The first Montreal History Festival retraces the history of the city

The inaugural edition of this new festival traces the history of the city through the roots and rhythms of the settlers and colonizers of New France.

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Given the city’s pride and care for its historic sites and museums (except maybe once), some Montrealers may Montreal History Festival marks the city’s first crack during a history festival.

From May 14 to 16, free activities will take place on site and virtually in 14 participating museums and other venues. Rather than a simple series of lectures and exhibitions, the festival approaches history with a different tact, offering activities and themes that deviate from the usual history lessons taught by men in tricorns.

The combined efforts of Montreal’s history museums are fully exposed. While there is a program of sporting events like walking tours of Old Montreal, sights of the city before 1940s and 50s photography and music, there are some approaches that broaden the appeal: New France are one, a video activity that follows the king’s quarters in the kitchen and teaches the origin of local culinary traditions, or there is the history of beer in Quebec, where participants can learn how Montrealers have been brewing beer since the beginning of the colony of New France – and it is followed by a guided tasting of Quebec beers.


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The event was long overdue, as the idea of ​​a trans-insular celebration of Montreal’s history had been brewing since 2014, but was put on hold in 2017 when Montreal’s history museums turned. towards Montreal’s 375th anniversary in 2017.

Inspired and partially modeled on the annual model Rendezvous in history festival in Blois, France, this inaugural edition is supported by the Regroupement des Musées d’histoire de Montréal, a voluntary association of 14 history, archeology and ethnology museums, in addition to other history and of heritage.

Together, the goal is to provide a space for exploration and training to as many experts and history buffs as there are members of the general public.


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“Our goal is to offer programming that interests Montrealers from all walks of life, programming that will excite and entertain while helping them make connections between the history of the city and that of their own family or community,” said Jean-François Leclerc, festival programming consultant in a statement.

The Montreal History Festival takes place from May 14 to 16; the full program of activities in English and / or French can be viewed on the festival website here.

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  1. The vegetable garden behind the Château de Ramezay museum, July 1, 2009.

    Château Ramezay: celebrating a Montreal icon

  2. The old Wellington Tunnel, at the foot of the Wellington Bridge in Montreal on Friday October 10, 2014.

    Montreal is a city of ghosts


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