VIEW-12777 | The Linton apartments, Sherbrooke Street, Montreal, QC, 1912-13

The Linton apartments, Sherbrooke Street, Montreal, QC, 1912-13
Wm. Notman & Son
1912-1913, 20th century
Silver salts on glass - Gelatin dry plate process
20 x 25 cm
Purchase from Associated Screen News Ltd.
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  Architecture (8646) , Photograph (77678) , residential (1255)
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Keys to History

Like Living in a Hotel

In the early 20th century, more and more apartment buildings were going up in Canadian cities. These big buildings were designed to meet the needs of a specific clientèle, and having all rooms on the same level simplified housekeeping. Attracted by the conveniences of this new type of dwelling, wealthier people also saw them as a substitute for the big houses that required a small army of domestics, who were becoming increasingly difficult to find.

Those who chose apartment living enjoyed a number of innovations and services in the buildings that made life very comfortable: elevator, central heating, garage, electric doorbell, telephone switchboard, janitor, dry cleaner and caterer, not to mention a dumbwaiter. It was like living in a hotel!

Where the telephone was concerned, the penetration rate in an apartment house like the Linton was much higher than the average for Montreal. In 1910 close to 75 percent of the building's residents had phones, while there were only 6 per 100 inhabitants in the entire city.

  • What

    Designed by architects Samuel Arnold Finley and David Jerome Spence, the Linton was built between 1906 and 1907. There are 90 apartments in the building. It was the biggest in the city when it was built.

  • Where

    Sherbrooke Street was a prestigious Montreal address and apartment houses were replacing private residences.

  • When

    Many apartment houses were built in Canadian cities before the First World War.

  • Who

    Many of the residents of the Linton, especially women, lived alone.