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Chapter 4 Images

A Notman composite of the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association Bicycle Club, 1885. Notice the common uniforms complete with winged wheel caps, breeches with long stockings, the para-military medals of riding distances awards, and the height of the bicycles compared to the riders. The bicycles are penny-farthings and the safer adult tricycles of the era. Notman Photographic Archives, view-26273.0, courtesy of the McCord Museum of Canadian History, Montreal (p. 51)

Curling on the St Lawrence River, Montreal, 1878—a Notman composite showing the Governor General, the Marquis of Lorne, and his wife in the middle foreground, and seated across the ice, wearing a top hat, Sir John A. MacDonald. This is a very staged photograph, typical of the period and a reflection of the technology; however, it provides a good glimpse into the nature of curling on outdoor ice and the interest of Montreal’s elite. Notman Photographic Archives II-48781, courtesy of the McCord Museum of Canadian History, Montreal (p. 53)

Skating on the Harbour Ice, Montreal, c. 1850. The European style of Montreal buildings juxtaposed with the bustle of winter life on the harbour are well represented in this sketch. The date precedes British North America’s skating mania by about a decade. Notice the long skate blades. Artist: John Henry Walker (1831–1899). Gift of Mr David Ross McCord no. M330. © McCord Museum (p. 54)

A snowshoe outing, c. 1878. The city of Montreal and Mount Royal in particular were alive in the winter months of the last half of the nineteenth century with snowshoe club members adorned in blanket coats with club-coloured sashes and tuques. Though another studio-staged photo, the single-file array of snowshoers does mirror how the “tramps” or long treks were done. Library and Archives Canada/Credit: Henderson, Alexander/Alexander Henderson fonds/C-022233 (p. 57)

A drawing of a mile-long snowshoe race for the Worthington Cup, Montreal, c. 1879. Racing on snowshoes was a very popular winter sport in many Canadian cities. Most races were done on iced horseracing tracks to accommodate spectators and facilitate gambling on the outcome. Note the streamlined, narrow snowshoes (likely “spiked” with nails for traction) and the racing tights, jerseys, and shorts. From the Scrapbook of the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association, volume 14. Courtesy of Don Morrow (p. 59)

A Notman composite of a skating carnival in the Victoria Rink, Montreal, 1870. This is one of the most famous Notman photographs from the nineteenth century. Artists coloured the carnival-esque outfits of the skaters and sold smaller versions of the picture to the skaters. As was the case with this photograph, the picture would very often be published on the front page (in black and white) of the local newspapers. Library and Archives Canada/Credit: William Notman/C-15302 (p. 61)

Starting a bicycle race, 1895. Bicycle racing was a very popular summer sport in Canadian towns and cities, especially when the two wheels were rendered to the modern equal size. Note the drop handlebars, single-speed nature of the bikes, and the riders’ outfits. Library and Archives Canada/Credit: H.J. Woodside/Henry Joseph Woodside fonds/ PA-016114 (p. 63)

Ice Palace for the 1884 Montreal Winter Carnival. The palaces were huge, elaborate structures built in Dominion Square in downtown Montreal every winter, coincident with the world-famous winter carnivals of the 1880s. The public could wander through and along the castellated walls during the days surrounding the carnivals. The mock “attacks” on the ice castles that featured hundreds of snowshoers, fireworks, and thousands of spectators were the highlight of the annual festivals. Library and Archives Canada/Canadian Intellectual Property Office fonds/PA-028746 (p. 66)

St John, New Brunswick’s “Paris Crew,” 1871; a quartette of oarsmen who became Canada’s first-ever international sport¬ing champions when they won the World Rowing Championship at the 1867 Paris, France, International Exposition. Rowing, along with cricket and lacrosse, was one of the most popular sports of the last third of the nineteenth century. It is fitting that a Maritimes’ crew ushered in Canada’s international rowing prowess. This crew won both the inrigged (oar locks on the gunnels) and outrigged (oar locks on extended riggers) events in the Paris events. Library and Archives Canada/Credit: G.P. Roberts/Canadian Intellectual Property Office fonds/C-014065 (p. 70)

Tom Longboat, 1907. Without question, Longboat was one of Canada’s foremost athletes who dominated long-distance running nationally and internationally during his era. Very likely because of his superlative talent and his Native status, he was also one of the most victimized athletes of his time. Gambling on long-distance races was common, certainly a feature and factor in his collapse during the 1908 Olympic Games. Longboat’s handlers had his legs insured for $25,000 with the prestigious Lloyd’s of London firm. Library and Archives Canada/Credit: Charles Aylett/C-014065 (p. 75)