The name of this site originates from the Jackman brothers, three American loyalists who came north from Bradford, New Hampshire. Around 1820, Humphrey, Samuel and John Jackman settle with their families near the end of a country road (the future Route 112) that leads to Saint-Césaire.
During this period, the farms at this location go by the name of the Catfish Settlement. More American loyalists, including the Evans, Conn and Buckley families, will join the brothers in this settlement. John Jackman was the first postmaster in Abbotsford. Today, the stream that passes by this place carries the name of Barbue River. Rang Saint-Ours, which comes to an end at Route 112, received this name from the seigneur of the area, Pierre-Dominique Debartzch. The seigneur wished to commemorate the name of his new bride, Josephte de Saint-Ours, to whom he was married on July 25, 1815. This lady was the daughter of the seigneur Charles de Saint-Ours.
The Montreal & Southern Counties Railway designates a flag stop at this location to serve a group of houses at the corner of Rang Saint-Ours and Route 112. The French Canadians call this settlement Pauline, a corruption of the English words St.Paul’s Line. It is also the name of the local post office. However, to identify this stop, the railway company will use the name Jackman Road in reference to Rang Jackman, which is located close by. Here, from February 1, 1885, to August 31, 1914, there is a post office, a dairy and a general store owned by Joseph-Placide Rocheleau. Here is how Mrs. Estelle Angers Brodeur describes the old neighbourhood: “There was a butter and cheese dairy, and a general store which also served as a post office. My grandfather, Joseph-Placide Rocheleau (1866–1951), ran this business with help from his wife, Perpétue Larose, and their eight children. They received and weighed the milk brought by farmers from the neighbouring rangs, made butter and cheese, and served the store’s customers. People could obtain all their supplies there. Not just basic foodstuffs but oil for their lamps, sweets for their children, and so on. You could even purchase fabric there. Naturally this was the place for many lively meetings to exchange news, gossip and anecdotes of all kinds.” After November 24, 1951, the electric streetcars will no longer stop at Jackman Road (the Pauline stop).
Cadastral map showing the railway passing by Jackman Road.
An electric train stopping at Jackman Road on November 24, 1951. To the right is a service road and the complex of buildings for La Renardière.
Abbé Paul M.-J. Benoit, the parish priest of Saint-Césaire from 1917 to 1928, was eager to help the people of his congregation. He was among the founders of the Caisse Populaire de Saint-Césaire de Rouville, which opened on November 17, 1917. Ten years later, he was the main initiator and secretary-treasurer of La Renardière de Saint-Césaire Inc., a fox fur tannery. In his view, the breeding of fox fur had a promising future. Therefore, an investment was made to erect the necessary buildings close to the Jackman Road railway stop and alongside Route 112, which connected the cities of Montreal and Sherbrooke. At the start of the project, La Renardière and its operations cover 11 acres of land alongside the railway, with 78 iron enclosures built for maximum stability and in perfect symmetry, two houses two storeys tall for the breeders, a well-kept barn and stable, a modern-style poultry house, a 128-cage rabbit house, a grain shed, a slaughterhouse, and 75 pairs of silver foxes all carefully recorded. The Montreal & Southern Counties Railway has a flag stop and service track here which are linked to the tannery and allow freight cars to transport goods along the tram line. Unfortunately, La Renardière will not last long as a commercial enterprise, but fall victim to the Great Depression of the 1930s. A few years later, however, some private entrepreneurs revive operations here and continue to raise silver foxes and mink until the 1950s.
Cars 607 and 611 at Marieville Station in November 1955.
Utility car 302 is equipped with special brooms to brush snow from the tracks in winter.
Cars 504 and 605 waiting to depart from the McGill Street Terminal. This was an interurban streetcar station located in Old Montreal, at the corner of McGill and Marguerite-D’Youville.
Utility car 300 operated as a snowplow on the Montreal & Southern Counties Railway.
The winter season in Quebec is well known for its heavy snow storms. The Montreal & Southern Counties Railway prepares for extreme winter weather so it can maintain a regular service schedule for travellers and merchandise. When the cold season arrives, snowplows must be installed on the front of some streetcars. A utility car is also in service which is specially designed to carry snow brooms at each end. There is also a larger, more powerful utility car equipped with wide plows for removing heavy snow from the tracks. But when a large snowstorm hits, there is no substitute for human strength, as we can see from a photo of the railway taken near Marieville on the day after a blizzard has fallen.
Railroaders use shovels to remove snow from the Montreal & Southern Counties Railway near Marieville.
Location of the pannel on La Route des Champs
Research and text
Gilles Bachand, historian
Société d'histoire et de généalogie des Quatres Lieux
References and photographs (2020)
Archives of the Société d’histoire et de généalogie des Quatre Lieux
Archives of the Société d’histoire de la Seigneurie de Monnoir