Official launch of celebrations

Montréal, June 14, 2012 – Château Ramezay – Historic Site and Museum of Montréal is hosting a wine tasting fundraiser on Wednesday, June 20 at 5:30 p.m. to launch celebrations marking the 150th anniversary of the Antiquarian and Numismatic Society of Montréal (ANSM), owner and manager of the Museum. This event, presented as part of Château Ramezay’s fundraising campaign, promises to be an evening of flavours and refinement, with wine and culinary delights.

Alongside guest sommelier Véronique Rivest, compare the aromas, flavours and textures of various wines carefully selected for the occasion. Named “Best Sommelier of Canada” in 2006 and winner of the “Wine Woman Award” in Paris in 2007, Ms Rivest will accompany you on an evening of flavourful discoveries. Claude Pelletier, renowned chef of the restaurant Le Club Chasse & Pêche, will prepare hors d’oeuvres in perfect harmony with the selected wines. A gourmet experience, guaranteed!

The event will also feature door prizes and a silent auction. All of the profits raised during the evening will go to Château Ramezay’s educational programs and cultural activities.

For tickets, please contact Catherine Bussières at 514 861-3708, extension 223.


To this day, the ANSM continues to ensure the conservation, interpretation and dissemination of our heritage through exhibitions, activities and educational programs presented at Château Ramezay. The 150th anniversary of the Society is an opportunity to highlight the work accomplished by past Montrealers and to pay tribute to all those who have been committed to our institution.


Throughout 2012, several events will mark this historic anniversary, including an Open House Weekend. On August 25 and 26, visitors will have free access to all of the Museum’s exhibitions, with guided presentations and a variety of activities. And, of course, there will be cake, as is only fitting for the 150th anniversary of our Society!

Printable version


Montréal’s evolving heritage

Montréal, June 21, 2012 – As part of the celebrations marking the 150th anniversary of its founding Society, Château Ramezay – Historic Site and Museum of Montréal, in partnership with the Heritage Montreal Foundation, presents the exhibition 150 years of action: Montréal’s evolving heritage. This retrospective in images focuses on the theme of urban heritage and the actions taken to protect and enhance it.

The walls of Château Ramezay can still tell their story thanks to the citizens who saved the building from demolition in their quest to preserve and give voice to this testament of the past. This is a wonderful example of the many actions that have been taken in Montréal to protect our heritage. Without this spirit of commitment, a raised highway would have cut through the historic quarter of Old Montréal, Louis-Joseph Papineau’s house would still be a snack bar and Guaranteed Pure Milk Co.’s pint of milk would no longer punctuate the urban horizon.

Through a series of photographic reproductions backlit at night, the exhibition 150 years of action: Montréal’s evolving heritage presents all the wealth and diversity of Montréal’s built heritage. From the “Faubourg à m’lasse” to the Louis Cyr monument, silo no. 5, Habitat 67 and Place Ville Marie, this exhibition recounts what was, what still is and what could have been…

The examples selected for the exhibition tell the story of how dedicated citizens and their associations are to protecting and revitalizing our city’s very diverse heritage. It also captures a society’s evolving view of its heritage as well as the visionary and generous efforts of individuals to whom Montréal owes much of what it is today. In 2012, the goal is not so much to look back at the past as it is to draw lessons and inspiration in order to better imagine and create the Montréal that we wish to leave for future generations.

                               Dinu Bumbaru, Policy Director with the Heritage Montreal Foundation

The free exhibition 150 years of action: Montréal’s evolving heritage, located at Place De La Dauversière, between Château Ramezay and Place Jacques-Cartier, is presented from June 18 to October 8, 2012.

Printable version

In the Time of Smallpox : Physicians, Surgeons and Apothecaries in New France

Montréal, November 15, 2011 - The Château Ramezay – Historic Site and Museum of Montréal invites you to take the pulse of various aspects of 17th and 18th century health in its brand new exhibition In the Time of Smallpox, presented from November 16, 2011 to November 11, 2012. Physicians, surgeons and apothecaries, along with midwives, hospital nuns, healers and bonesetters are on duty for a very enriching consultation!

The opening of the exhibit will take place tonight at the Château Ramezay starting at 5:30 p.m. We will have the pleasure to welcome, as a special guest, Doctor Horacio Arruda, Director of Public Health Protection.

Epidemics regularly threatened the colony of New France. Smallpox was the most common and deadliest infectious disease. At the time, public health problems were rife and personal hygiene was basic at best.

Several treatment options were available to the population during epidemics or for various illnesses. To learn more, take a number! You will be paired up with a historical figure, like Governor de Ramezay, whose health woes you will assess as you move through the exhibition.

  • You be the doctor! Make a diagnosis based on the symptoms of your historical figure and prescribe the appropriate treatment… according to the theory of humours. Can you tell the difference between an imbalance in phlegm, blood, black bile or yellow bile?
  • Now walk in the shoes of a surgeon. A general practitioner at the time, he healed wounds, amputated limbs and performed bloodletting. Which instrument will you choose if your historical figure has a broken arm or tooth?
  • Get out your jars and become an apothecary! The precursor to pharmacies, apothecary shops supplied medicines to hospitals, surgeons and physicians. Ginseng, ipecacuanha, dragon’s blood… Which plant will heal your historical figure’s ailment?
  • Beyond official channels, patients had recourse to various alternative therapies, depending on their beliefs and financial means. Best to keep one’s options open! Why not try a bonesetter, a healer, a homemade remedy, a pilgrimage or advice from the priest? Who will your historical figure turn to for help?

In addition to these practitioners, there were midwives—chosen for their moral qualities and good reputation— as well as nuns who treated the body and soul of their patients.

The exhibition also takes a brief look at the 19th and 20th centuries, when various professions were organized into “colleges” and professional associations, which did not prevent the proliferation of “miracle cures” on the market. With time, major discoveries, such as anaesthesia and X-rays, led to great advances in the medical field.

A turning point in history, the 1885 smallpox epidemic hit Montréal hard, and led to the creation of a hygiene council for the entire province and the establishment of public baths.

Anecdote: Did you know that in 1878 Université Laval à Montréal’s faculty of medicine was housed in the Château Ramezay?

In the Time of Smallpox brings together 250 objects from various museums, including from the Stewart Museum collections. Thanks to a special collaboration with the Ville de Montréal and the Department of Anthropology of Université de Montréal, the public will get a rare glimpse of bones from the cemetery of the first Notre-Dame church. These relics open a window onto the lives of the first Montrealers and their ailments as well as the treatments and surgical procedures of the period.

Here’s to your health!

Printable version

Back to Press Room



Louise Brazeau, Head - Education and Promotion

Phone: 514-861-3708 ext. 229