Quebec, a fortified city and port of entry of the Dominion of Canada, capital of the province of Quebec, situated on the N. W. bank of the river St. Lawrence, at its confluence with the St. Charles, nearly 400 m. from the gulf of St. Lawrence, and 140 m. (in a direct line) N. E. of Montreal, in lat. 46° 49' 6" N., lon. 71° 13' 45" W.; pop. in 1861, 59,990; in 1871, 59,699 (the decrease being attributed to the withdrawal of the British regiments forming the garrison). Of the latter number, 40,890 were of French, 12,345 of Irish, 3,974 of English, and 1,861 of Scotch origin', and 52,357 were Roman Catholics. Quebec is built on the northern extremity of an elevated tongue of land which forms the left bank of the St. Lawrence for several miles. Cape Diamond, so called from the numerous quartz crystals formerly found there, is the loftiest part of the headland, 333 ft. above the stream, and crowned with the vast fortifications of the citadel. These occupy about 40 acres, and with their outlying works obtained for Quebec the appellation of the "Gibraltar of America." From the citadel a line of wall runs westward toward the cliffs overhanging the valley of the St. Charles, and is thence continued around the brow of the promontory till it connects once more with Cape Diamond near the governor's garden.
This circuit is about 2 3/4 m. in extent, and is pierced by five gates, now dismantled. The Avails and ramparts outside of the citadel proper, though still mounted with cannon, are no longer kept in repair. The modern changes in artillery have necessitated the construction at enormous cost of a vast system of defensive works on the heights beyond Point Levi, and others are contemplated. Cape Diamond, Durham terrace, the grand battery, and the vast balcony on the university building, on the east and north, and the ramparts between St. Louis and St. John gates, on the south and west, afford prospects rivalled by few in America. The city is divided into the upper and the lower town. The former comprises the walled city with the two suburbs of St. Louis and St. John, between the Walls and the plains of Abraham. The lower town is the portion which encircles the base of the promontory from beneath Cape Diamond to the mouth of the St. Charles, together with the suburbs of St. Roch, St. Sau-veur, and Boisseauville. A very large part of the city within the walls, or the upper town proper, is taken up with the buildings and grounds of great religious corporations, the seminary and Laval university, the Ursulines and the Hôtel-Dieu, and the ancient Jesuit college, founded in 1633, and occupied as a barrack after 1812. It is now proposed (1875) to erect a building for the provincial legislature on its site.
Over the remaining irregular surface, not covered by military works, are crowded the quaint mediaeval streets and dwellings, built generally of stone, two or three stories high, and roofed, like the public buildings, with shining tin. Here are situated the parliament house, post office, court house, city hall, the residences of the officers of the provincial government and of the wealthy capitalists, the principal hotels, finest stores, and chief places of amusement. The suburbs of St. Louis and St. John extend southward and westward along the plateau; the former along the foot of the citadel to that part of the plains of Abraham where Wolfe conquered, and where a modest column stands with the inscription: "Here Wolfe died victorious, Sept. 13, 1759;" the latter lower down on the slope, skirting the verge of the acclivity. A handsome iron column, surmounted by a bronze statue of Bellona, in memory of the victory of the chevalier de Lévis over Gen. Murray in 1760, was erected here in 1854, the statue being presented by Prince Napoleon Bonaparte. These suburbs, which are constantly encroaching on the historic plains, contain many beautiful private residences, and several large conventual establishments and churches. - The lower town proper was the most ancient part of Quebec, surrounding the old church of Notre Dame des Victoires on the east, built on the site of Champlain's residence, and comprising chiefly what is now the Champlain ward.
It communicates with the upper town by the Champlain steps and the steep and winding Côte de la Montagne or Mountain street. Here, around Notre Dame des Victoires and the Champlain market, are the principal wharves and steamboat and ferry landings. It is the busiest and most crowded mart of the city, and a conglomeration of irregular streets. St. Peter street leads northward from this quarter to the custom house, on the very apex of the beach formed by the confluent waters. Here, beneath the guns of the grand battery 200 ft. above, are the great commercial establishments, the merchants' exchange, the banking houses, wholesale stores, and bonded warehouses. St. Paul's street connects with St. Peter's before the custom house, and stretches westward on the narrow strand between the cliff and the bay, amid breweries, distilleries, manufactories, and gas works, till it meets, near the mouth of the St. Charles, St. Joseph street, the main artery of the large suburb St. Roch. On the banks of the St. Charles are the principal ship yards. St. Roch and Boisseauville are the home of the laboring classes.
The chief institutions here are the large convent and schools of the sisters of Notre Dame near the church of St. Roch, and the general hospital on the banks of the St. Charles. - From Près-de-ville, at the foot of Cape Diamond, proceeding S. W. as far as Sillery, the shore of the St. Lawrence is indented with 17 coves, all filled with lumber rafts. The opposite shore of the St. Lawrence, from New Liverpool to and beyond Point Levi, presents a scene of activity scarcely surpassed by the" city itself. New Liverpool is connected with Quebec by a steam ferry, has several factories and mills, a large trade in lumber, and the church of St. Romuald, the finest on the lower St. Lawrence. Adjoining New Liverpool is South Quebec, with a population of 3,000 (increasing rapidly), and immense lumber yards from which large yearly shipments are made. It is the stopping place of the transatlantic steamers from Liverpool. St. Joseph, between South Quebec and Levis, has as large a business as the former. The town of Lévis or Point Levi, situated on the right bank opposite the island of Orleans, just where the main branch of the St. Lawrence turns eastward, is the terminus of the Grand Trunk railway and of the Lévis and Kennebec railway.
It has several churches, a thriving college, a succursal of the seminary of Quebec, a convent with a large female academy, several other flourishing schools, hotels, telegraph offices, extensive lumber and ship yards, and a considerable trade. - Quebec has many fine buildings. The custom house, on the bank of the river, is an imposing Doric edifice with a dome and a façade of noble columns, approached by a long flight of steps. Of the church edifices, the cathedral of Notre Dame is the most remarkable. It was elevated in October, 1874, to the rank of a basilica, on the occasion of the second centenary of the erection of the see of Quebec. It is a plain edifice externally, with a cut stone front added to it in 1844, and unpleasantly contrasting with the remainder of the structure. It is 216 ft. long, 180 wide, and about 80 in interior elevation, capable of seating 4,000 persons, with a spacious sanctuary, a richly decorated high altar, and several original paintings of great value. The Protestant cathedral, a plain gray edifice surmounted by a tall spire, stands in the centre of a large square, enclosed with an iron fence. S. E. of it is the parade ground, a central point, adorned with a fine fountain.
The garden of the fortress, another fine promenade, has an obelisk erected in 1828 to the memory of Wolfe and Montcalm. The Chalmers church, the Wesleyan church (in the flamboyant style), and the chapel of the gray sisters are good specimens of Gothic church architecture. The marine hospital, built after the model of the temple of the Muses on the banks of the Ilissus, the archbishop's palace, the parliament buildings, the theatre, the city hall, and the university buildings are worthy of notice. - The St. Lawrence is about three quarters of a mile (1,314 yards) wide opposite Cape Diamond, but the mouth of the St. Charles forms with it a magnificent basin nearly 4 m. long and 3 m. wide. The beautiful island of Orleans and the shores of Point Levi shut in this basin on the northeast and east. The depth of the water is about 28 fathoms. The ordinary tide is 17 or 18 ft. at new and full moon; but the spring tides attain a height of 23 or 24 ft. The harbor is safe and commodious, and the largest vessels can lie at the wharves. In the latter part of December the river is closed by ice, and navigation ceases till the latter part of April, when the ice usually disappears very suddenly.
There are two regular lines of transatlantic steamers, running weekly between Quebec, Liverpool, and Glasgow, and one fortnightly line between Quebec and London. There are also weekly steamers for the gulf ports, steamers for the Saguenay almost daily in the summer months, and semi-weekly for the stations intermediate between Quebec and Three Rivers, besides several ferries. - Quebec, next to Montreal, is the most important centre of maritime commerce in British North America. It is one of the largest lumber and timber markets on the American continent. The principal imports are woollen, cotton, and silk goods, iron, hardware, coal, and salt. The exports consist chiefly of ships, lumber, and grain. The ships built at Quebec are renowned for their beauty, solidity, and sailing qualities. Much the larger portion of the commerce is with Great Britain. The value of imports in 1860 was $3,358,676; of exports, $7,271,959. The value of imports and exports for the four years ending June 30, 1874, was as follows:
Quebec, from Point Levi.
The number of entrances during the last named year was 983, tonnage 790,361, of which 533, tonnage 381,032, were in ballast; of clearances, 846, tonnage 671,386; number of vessels built, 52, tonnage 21,065. The number of vessels belonging to the port on June 1, 1874, was 801, with an aggregate tonnage of 100,564. According to the census of 1871, the amount of capital invested in manufactures was $2,870,-638; number of hands employed, 7,250; amount of yearly wages, $1,459,279; value of raw materials, $4,771,459; total value of products, $8,449,752. The principal articles of manufacture are boots and shoes, saw-mill products, ships, bakery products, furniture, foundery products and machinery, refined sugar, India-rubber goods, rope and twine, clothing, cooperage, carriages, ale and beer, furs and hats, sash, doors, and blinds, soap and candles, and tobacco. There are three banks with an aggregate paid-up capital on Sept. 30, 1874, of $6,307,-205; circulation, $3,044,719; deposits, $8,614,-438; specie and Dominion notes, $1,623,750; discount, $14,603,747. - Quebec returns three members to the "Dominion house of commons, and three to the provincial legislature. It is divided into eight wards, and is governed by a mayor, eight aldermen, and 18 councillors.
It is the seat of a Protestant bishop and a Roman Catholic archbishop, and has 19 churches and a synagogue. The chief benevolent institutions are: the Hôtel-Dieu, with its convent and hospital, founded in 1639 by the duchess d'Aiguillon, and in 1875 comprising 45 sisters of the Sacred Blood of Dieppe, 80 beds for patients of every creed and nationality, and ministering gratuitously to 10,000 patients yearly; the general hospital, with convent and halls for incurable patients, founded at a personal expense of 100,000 crowns by Bishop de Saint-Valier in 1693; the hospital of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, a branch of the general hospital, opened Sept. 8, 1873; the convent of the sisters of charity, or gray sisters, founded in 1848 by Archbishop Turgeon, combining an asylum for the aged and infirm poor, an orphanage, and a free industrial school for 1,000 pupils, the whole supported by private industry and charity; the house of the Good Shepherd, a reformatory for the fallen, a conservatory for exposed girls, and a school for 500 pupils, established in 1850, supported during the first year by the guild of St. Vincent de Paul, and at present almost entirely self-supporting with the aid of private charity.
Connected with the medical school of the Laval university are the maternity hospital and the dispensary, the former founded in 1852 by the Rev. Joseph Auclair, aided by Mlle. Méthivier, a poor seamstress (who has also opened a private lying-in asylum, now governed by herself); the latter established in February, 1866, also by Father Auclair and the seminary of Quebec, and exclusively supported by them with the aid of private charity, and a grant of $500 from the legislature toward the hospital. Both afford assistance to all applicants without exception. The maternity hospital is under the charge of the sisters of the Good Shepherd, and the dispensary under that of the sisters of charity. There are also the St. Bridget's asylum, connected with St. Patrick's Roman Catholic church, and the ladies' Protestant home, the latter providing for old men and young unprotected girls. The marine hospital, on the bank of the St. Charles, near the general hospital, and the Canada military asylum for the widows and orphans of British soldiers, are maintained at the public expense. - The most important educational institution is the "Seminary of Quebec," with its offshoot and dependent the Laval university.
The seminary was founded in 1663 by François de Montmorency-Laval, first bishop of Quebec, who bestowed upon it at his death in 1708 all the personal property in Canada which he had purchased by the sale of his patrimonial estates in France. The grand séminaire or theological school was opened in 1666, and the petit séminaire or collegiate school in 1668. The first building for the special use of these schools, of stone, on the site of the present middle seminary building, was erected in 1678; it was burned in 1701, rebuilt, and again burned in 1705, when it was built larger. It was originally designed only for clerical students; but when the Jesuit college, founded in 1637, was closed after the conquest, the seminary courses were thrown open to all classes. The whole community of professors and pupils numbered 54 persons in 1704, and 110 in 1800. Within the present century two new wings have been added to the original building, each far exceeding it in size and costliness. The institution was raised to the rank of a university by a charter signed by Queen Victoria Dec. 8, 1852, the power of conferring the canonical degrees in theology being granted by Pius IX., March 6, 1853. The corner stone of the principal university building was laid Sept. 20, 1854. The three buildings erected are 576 ft. long (the main building being 286 ft.), five stories high, and of cut stone; the whole has been completed at a cost of $238,-787, without counting the sums expended for museums, library, apparatus, and picture gallery, amounting to about $500,000. In 1865 the whole of the new wing of the theological seminary and a portion of the old were burned down; but the directors rebuilt and enlarged these portions, giving a total length of 684 ft. for the seminary buildings alone.
The buildings connected with the main university edifice are a separate school of medicine and a boarders' hall for students in law and medicine. In thus founding the university and providing it with all that was needful, the directors declined all aid from the government or the city. The large hall of convocation has seats for 1,200 persons, besides galleries for ladies; the chemical laboratory is spacious, fire-proof, and provided with complete apparatus. The mineralogical and geological collections were first prepared under the direction of the Rev. John Holmes, and afterward, with several large subsequent additions, arranged systematically by Prof. T. Sterry Hunt. The museum of botany is equally complete. That of zoology contains upward of 1,300 different birds and over 7,000 insects. The ethnological collection is chiefly made up of the remains of Canadian Indians, and is mainly due to the labors of Dr. J. C. Taché. The museum of the medical department is especially complete. The gallery of paintings, lately thrown open to the public, contains 150 originals, duplicates, and copies, sent from France after the revolution of 1791, and repurchased from various owners in Canada, by the Hon. Joseph Légaré. The university library contains upward of 55,000 volumes, independently of the libraries belonging to the theological and preparatory departments, amounting to about 20,000 volumes more.
The nine directors of the seminary are by right members of the university council, the superior of the seminary being ex officio rector of the university. The other members of the council are the three senior professors in each of the faculties of divinity, law, medicine, and arts. The Roman Catholic archbishop of Quebec is ex officio visitor of the university; to him belongs the appointment of the professors of divinity and canon law, and the conferring of all degrees in the same. In 1875 there were five titular professors in divinity and its kindred sciences, six in law, nine in medicine, and five titular and six associate professors in arts, and one honorary professor and three tutors or professors chargés de cours. The divinity course embraces four years, the law course three years, and the medical course four years. There are six affiliated colleges: the college or preparatory seminary of Quebec, the college of Nicolet, the college of Ste. Anne de la Pocatière, the college of Ste. Thérèse de Blainville, the college of St. Joseph, Three Rivers, and that of St. Germain, Rimouski. The affiliated theological seminaries are those of Quebec, Ste. Anne de la Pocatière, and St. Germain de Rimouski. About 40 priests and theological students are employed in various capacities: of these the board of directors, or the corporation of the seminary, receive no salary, being provided with all necessaries at an annual expense of about $250 for each.
The auxiliary priests receive, besides their board, a salary of $100; the tutors or disciplinarians who are theological students have each a yearly salary of $55; and the whole amount of salaries is considerably less than $2,000. In 1874 there were in all 2.90 university students, of whom 55 were in the divinity school, 36 in the law school, 93 in the medical school, and 106 in the junior and senior classes of philosophy. - Besides the university, Quebec has the Laval normal and model school, founded in January, 1857, under the superintendence of the Hon. Pierre J. O. Chauveau; the Morrin college, the only non-episcopal Protestant one in the province; and the Quebec high school. Morrin college occupies the old prison in the centre of the upper town; it has 10 professors, but is inadequately patronized. The high school has been always very successful, and has 200 students, with a large staff of professors and a handsome library. The other principal schools are: the Ursuline convent, founded in 1639, having in 1875 89 nuns, and educating 260 boarders, 140 half boarders, and 400 day scholars, together with 55 pupil teachers and 200 pupils belonging to the female department of the Laval normal school; the congregation of Notre Dame, with their chief convent and school near St. Koch's church, established in 1843 by the Rev. Z. Charest, and having two schools in the city with 2,100 pupils in 1875, most of whom are educated without cost to the parents; and the "Brothers of the Christian Schools," founded in 1842 by the late Archbishop Baillargeon, with three residences and six schools and a commercial academy founded by the Rev. Joseph Auclair, educating gratuitously 2,500 pupils, and receiving in return the bare necessaries of life from the free bounty of the citizens.
There are several flourishing literary societies, foremost among which is the Quebec literary and historical society, the oldest chartered institution of the kind in Canada, founded in 1824. It still has a valuable library, though a great portion of its most precious books and manuscripts were destroyed with the parliament buildings in 1854. The Canadian institute, the entomological society, and the St. Patrick's literary institute possess valuable libraries, as well as the society of advocates, the board of trade, and the merchants' exchange. There are five daily newspapers (three of which are in the French language), one tri-weekly, four weekly, and three monthly periodicals. - The site of Quebec was visited by Cartier in 1534-'5, and the city was founded by Champlain in 1608. It was taken by the English in 1629, and restored to France by the treaty of 1632. In 1636 it had 100 inhabitants. It was the colony of a concessionary company, who did not fulfil their promises to the settlers, and hence its growth was slow. The magistrate, named by the company, was called a syndic, and had powers similar to those of a mayor.
The king, dissatisfied with the management of the company, took the colony into his own hands, and in 1663 appointed a governor and created the sovereign council of Quebec, who were charged with its government. In 1690 the neighboring English colonies made an unsuccessful maritime expedition against it. In 1711 the attempt was renewed, with no better success. The first attempt at erecting stone fortifications was made after the first of these attacks, the place having been previously protected only by palisades. In 1734 it had, including its suburbs, only 4,603 inhabitants. In 1759, during the seven years' war, the English Gen. James Wolfe attacked the city and bombarded it. On Sept. 13 took place the first battle of the plains of Abraham, in which both the contending generals fell, and England gained at one blow an American empire. On Sept. 18 Quebec capitulated after a siege of 69 days. The French attempted its recapture, and in the following spring the second battle of the plains of Abraham was fought, and victory sided with the French colonists; but at the treaty of peace in 1763
Louis XV. ceded the whole of New France to the English. Quebec, ruined by Wolfe's bombardment, rose slowly from its ashes, though its commerce increased. In 1764 the first newspaper, the "Quebec Gazette," published in two languages, made its appearance. In 1775 the city had only 5,000 inhabitants. In December, 1775, a small American force under Gen. Montgomery attempted its capture, but failed, with the loss of about 700 men and their commander (Dec. 31). In 1792, the year after the inauguration of the representative system in Canada, the first Lower Canadian parliament was convoked at Quebec, and the city remained the seat of government for the lower province till the union of the Canadas in 1841. During this period its growth was steady and moderately rapid; in 1844 its population was 32,876, besides 2,797 in the suburbs. Two terrible fires occurred in 1845, at a month's interval, in the faubourgs of St. Roch and St. John; nearly 3,000 houses were burned, and property to the amount of more than $8,000,000 was destroyed. Large conflagrations also occurred in 1862 and 1866; and great improvements have since been made in the fire department and a more secure style of building adopted.
In 1851 Quebec again became the capital for four years under the arrangement for alternating capitals adopted in 1849, and kept up till 1858, when Ottawa became the seat of government. After the erection of the Dominion of Canada in 1867, Quebec became the capital of the province of Quebec.