On 17 May 1642, a group of French settlers led by Paul de Chomedey de Maisonneuve and Jeanne Mance established the missionary colony of Ville-Marie on the Island of Montréal. Today, this modest settlement founded in the middle of the St. Lawrence River is Canada’s second largest city and home to nearly half of the province of Québec’s population. A centre of francophone culture in North America, Montréal also enjoys international renown. Through exhibits, images and articles — as well as several Heritage Minutes about influential Montrealers — this collection celebrates the 375-year heritage and history of this important cultural and economic centre.
Formerly known as Barrachois (from barachois, meaning small port, lagoon or pond), its present name is likely derived from the Irish seaport and shire town of Waterford, from which many early settlers came. Coal mining in the vicinity began as early as 1854 at Lingan and later at Low Point in 1865.
Watson Lake became an important communication centre after the construction of a major airport (1943), and remains a transportation hub, linking roads from BC with main routes to the interior and to the Northwest Territories. The town is also the centre for forestry and mining in the region.
The town is a service and administrative centre for the surrounding area. Grain growing and the raising of livestock are the main activities. The town lies in close proximity to a number of lakes and parks, with many recreational opportunities including fishing, snowmobiling, hunting and golfing.