M979.87.188 | Obsequies of Sir Geo. E. Cartier.-The Funeral Service in the Parish Church of Notre Dame

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Obsequies of Sir Geo. E. Cartier.-The Funeral Service in the Parish Church of Notre Dame
1873, 19th century
Ink on paper - Photolithography
40 x 55.5 cm
Gift of Mr. Charles deVolpi
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  Architecture (8646) , Print (10661) , religious (1331)
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Keys to History

On May 20, 1873, a transatlantic telegraph arrived in Montreal from London, England, announcing that Sir George-Etienne Cartier had died that morning. News of the death of Cartier, a former prime minister of the Province of Canada, was very sadly received, especially among French Canadians.

Preparations began at once for Cartier's funeral, to be held in the national monument of French Canada, Notre-Dame Basilica. The basilica had hosted many important ceremonies since its construction in 1829, but the funeral of Sir George-Etienne Cartier was perhaps the most splendid. For it, the church was draped in black and 500 tapers burned atop an immense catafalque.

This print depicting the event was published in the magazine "L'Opinion publique" in June 1873.

  • What

    Notre-Dame Basilica could seat 10,000 people in its nave and galleries. On the occasion of Cartier's funeral, every available seat was filled, judging from this souvenir print.

  • Where

    This image shows the interior of Notre-Dame Basilica before the redecoration undertaken by Victor Bourgeau (1809-1888) in the mid-1870s.

  • When

    After the arrival of the coffin of Sir George-Étienne Cartier in Quebec City on June 8, 1873, a short funeral ceremony was held in that city. The coffin was then transported to Montreal for the official funeral service.

  • Who

    Sir George-Etienne Cartier (1814-1873) was a lawyer, politician and prime minister of the Province of Canada.