Mountain Hill, Quebec.
Still, Quebec has not prospered relatively as much as many other cities of the Dominion. Its population in 1891 was only a trifle over 63,000; while Montreal had then 216,000, and in the last decade has added to this number probably 50,000 more. Times and conditions change, and towns change with them.
Thus, to Quebec the Wooden Age was far more beneficial than the present one of Iron. Before the use of iron-plated vessels, it was famous for its ship-building. As early as 1731 a number of men-of-war and transports were constructed here for the French government; and just a century later it gained the memorable distinction of building and launching the first vessel that ever crossed the Atlantic propelled by steam. This primitive transatlantic liner bore the title of the "Royal William," and had a length of one hundred and seventy-six feet, and engines of two hundred horse-power. Leaving Quebec on the 5th of August, 1833, and Nova Scotia on the 18th, this pioneer of steam traffic between Europe and America reached London after a voyage of nineteen days. It is interesting also to learn that among the stockholders of the company which built the vessel was Mr. Samuel Cunard, who, encouraged by this success, soon went to Glasgow, where, in 1840, he founded the Cunard Line of steamers, now known throughout the world by the name of its Quebec promoter. As Montreal has grown to be an important manufacturing and railway centre, Quebec has seen much of the commerce which she once enjoyed move past her toward the West. In former years, almost the entire export trade in timber went by way of Quebec. Now most of it is handled elsewhere. Timber is no longer brought to Quebec on rafts; but, as a rule, the lumber is sent directly from the mills by rail to the nearest shipping port. Even the lumber intended for Great Britain is not always loaded at Quebec, but frequently at Montreal and sometimes at Three Rivers. Nevertheless, most of the trade of the lower St. Lawrence and the eastern districts must always centre at Quebec; and as these provinces develop their resources and increase in population, the fortress city will undoubtedly recover much that she has lost.
Steamer "Montkeal" At Quebec.
It is, however, the Upper Town that most excites the interest and admiration of the visitor to Quebec. There are its finest buildings, threeofwhich - the noble architectural pile of Laval University, the imposing Chateau Frontenac, and, above all, the historic, cannon-belted citadel, which covers an extent of forty acres, and makes the cliff the Ehrenbreitstein of the western hemisphere - would crown with honor any city in the world. There also is the famous esplanade, known as the Dufferin Terrace, which will forever linger in the memory of any one who has beheld the glorious panorama visible from its pavilions.
Loading Square Timber.
Terraces, faced and flanked with masonry and bordered by a massive parapet, have always had for me a singular attraction. To walk upon their broad and level surfaces, and look off on some beautiful expanse of river, lake, or ocean scenery, gives me perhaps a calmer, but certainly a more enduring pleasure than that acquired by standing on a lofty mountain peak, however vast may be the view which it commands. Hence, I recall few more delightful hours than those which I have passed upon the terraces of Kronborg Castle (Hamlet's home) beside the Danish Oeresund; of Heidelberg, commanding from its forest height the lovely valley of the Neckar; of Pau, confronting forty miles of Pyrenees; of Lausanne, looking down upon the mirror of Lake Leman; and of Voltaire's old home at Ferney, opposite Mont Blanc. With these, too, must be ranked the moments spent upon the Dufferin Terrace at Quebec. At any time the prospect there disclosed is wonderful; but when at night we stand midway between the city and the citadel, sufficiently above the town to lose all sight and sound of its details, yet near enough to see its shrouded form lying beneath in almost total darkness; or better still, when, leaning on the parapet, we look down on the moonlit river, crossed by a floating bridge of gold, and see beyond its glittering terminus the rounded outlines of Mount Levis, upon the slopes of which a score of lighted villages seem constellations rising from the sea: such is the solemn beauty of the scene that we can think there only serious and lofty thoughts. Historic memories sweep over us; and, since all history is little more than magnified biography, we call to mind the mighty dead connected with the place: Frontenac, greatest of Canadian governors, under whose rule a chain of military outposts linked the St. Lawrence with the Gulf of Mexico, making it seem quite probable that France would dominate the American continent; and Francois de Laval, first bishop of the colony, who founded here in 1663 a seminary, the successor to which, the celebrated Laval University, is not only the most conspicuous building in Quebec, but occupies an equally high position in the estimation of Canadian citizens. We think, too, of the priests who, burning with religious zeal, gladly endured the loneliness of exile, companionship with loathsome savages, torture and even agonizing death, if they could but accomplish the conversion, as others would the conquest, of the continent; and who, in 1637, a year after the founding of Harvard College, built here a modest wooden edifice, intended as a school alike for Indian pupils and the children of the French.