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© McCord Museum
Louis-Joseph Papineau, Montreal, QC, 1861
William Notman (1826-1891)
1935-1956, 20th century
Silver salts on paper - Gelatin silver process
25 x 17 cm
Purchase from Associated Screen News Ltd.
© McCord Museum

Keys to History:

The Papineau family, which was linked to the Viger and Cherrier families, was prominent among Montreal's elite families. Louis-Joseph Papineau was torn between the love of his seigneury, Montebello, and the active life of politics. As leader of the patriotes, Papineau would ensure that his name became synonymous with the nationalist movement in Lower Canada.

Source : The Aftermath of the Rebellions [Web tour], by Brian J. Young, McGill University (see Links)


Notman's success depended on taking photos of customers from all walks of Montreal society. Families, be they French or English, rich or poor, saw the importance of photographs. Soon young and old alike crowded into Notman's studio.


Although William Notman undoubtedly took this photograph in his studio, Papineau by the 1860s was an elder statesman in retirement on his estate at Montebello.


Notman opened his photographic studio in Montreal in 1856. The great success of photography meant that he had commercial success and was able to open studios in four other Canadian cities.


A patriote, Papineau came from a prominent family. He remains one of the most important figures in the history of French Canadian nationalism.

© Musée McCord Museum