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© McCord Museum
City of Montreal from the Mountain.
James Duncan (1806-1881)
Before 1854, 19th century
Watercolour, graphite and gouache on paper
45.1 x 63.5 cm
Gift of Mr. David Ross McCord
© McCord Museum


This view looks east from the western slopes of Mount Royal towards the city and St. Helen's Island. In fact, the watercolour was painted from the garden of Temple Grove, the home of the McCord family. A horse-drawn carriage can be seen travelling along the Côte-des-Neiges Road. The row of lombardy poplars on the right marks the boundary of the Priest's Farm, which eventually became the site of the Grand Séminaire. To the left of the trees, lined with a row of while buildings, is Sherbrooke Street, which became one of the most fashionable thoroughfares in Montreal during the second half of the nineteenth century, The developments that can be seen spreading towards the west provide clear evidence of the extent of the city's growth by this period. This watercolour was the basis for a lithograph by Gauci, printed by M. & H. Hanhart and published by John Armour in Montreal and E. Gambart & Co., in London, on August 1, 1854. (Excerpt from: GRAHAM, Conrad. Mont-Royal - Ville Marie : Early Plans and Views of Montreal, McCord Museum of Canadian History, p.137.)

© Musée McCord Museum