Sunday, December 28, 2008

Last Duel in Canada

On an early morning in Montreal in 1838, major Henry Warde of the Royals Regiment, one of the most distinguished of the Montreal garrison was killed in a duel. The reason for the duel was that major Warde sent a bouquet of flowers supposedly to the wrong address and the lady showed it to her husband a named Robert Sweeney who was from a most respected Montreal family but known to be tempermental. Sweeney then challenged Warde to a duel who accepted. The duel was held in the early hours of the morning at the new race track situated nearby just west of de l'Église in Verdun. Warde was mortally wounded and this was the last fatal duel held in Canada.The duel was held in front of 50 witnesses. James Macdonald, labourer, a witness at the trial, helped carry the body to the "Pavillon", an hotel near the race track. M.H. Loverock, who lived in the "Pavillon", opened the door to let the men bring in the body. Robert Sweeney fled to Burlington Vermont where he died on the 15th of December 1840.

The "Pavillon" is a house where the city of Verdun was founded in 1876 and was situated near the corner of LaSalle and de L'Église (Church). Another interesting fact is that the same year (1838) a race track was founded in that area as I have previously related wich was then converted to a velodrome in 1899. Also, on a period map, de l'Église st. (Church) is named Pavillon, no doubt after this renowned house.


ARCHIVES SHGV (Translated, condensed version)

This house was demolished in 1954 and replaced by a garage. The Knights of Colombus also lodged there, you can see their Insignia on top of the door.



Ken McLaughlin said...

that s great! Keep this stuff coming!!!

Stephen Redmond said...

Thanks Guy