#ThrowbackThursday: Charles Stanley Monck, 4th Viscount Monck

You’re thinking “Who?” At least to me, Lord Monck, Viscount Monck, or any other variation isn’t exactly a household name. With confirmation yesterday, however, that Julie Payette will be the next Governor General of Canada, I started looking at the history of that position, and who the first person to hold it was.

Charles Monck, 4th Viscount Monck, 1st Governor General of Canada, Winner of “Best Beard 1867” (One of those isn’t true.)

Charles Monck, later 4th Viscount Monck, later still Baron Monck, was born in Ireland, has the distinction of being both the last Governor General of the Province of Canada, and the first Governor General of Canada after Confederation. He was also a lawyer, having done law school at Trinity College in Dublin and called the bar at King’s Inn in 1841. According to the Canadian Encyclopedia, “Monck displayed considerable diplomatic skill in dealing with the serious Canadian-American tensions of the day. A keen advocate of the defence and political consolidation of BNA, Monck was one of the architects of the Great Coalition, devised to carry Confederation, and he worked assiduously to overcome opposition to Confederation in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.” Fun fact: Rideau Hall was purchased and established as official viceregal residence during his tenure. You can see here a picture of Lord Monck with his family and staff outside of the building in 1866:

When Lord Monck’s term was over, he returned to Ireland. He was succeeded by the second Governor General of Canada, with a name many of us are likely much more familiar with, at least in passing: John Young, 1st Baron Lisgar.


#ThrowbackThursday: Ottawa Electric Street Railway

As many of us eagerly await the new light rail service, we’re throwing it back 126 years today, to June 29, 1891, when the Ottawa Electric Railway Company first opened electric street railway service in Ottawa. The new trams replaced the horse-drawn streetcars that had been used previously. The city operated these new electric trams in a wide network, as can be seen in the map below.

So what happened to them? In the 1940s the company was purchased by the city and became the Ottawa Transportation Commission. By the late 1950s, it had fallen into financial trouble and was plagued with a fleet of aging streetcars. A consultant survey recommended replacing the fleet with diesel buses, and the OTC began removing the streetcar system. The last electric car ran on May 1, 1959, 68 years after they had first been introduced.


Credit: Library and Archives Canada/PA-176776


Ottawa Street Car System before it was removed, 1948. Source: http://www.nccwatch.org/blunders/sparks.htm


Sparks Street, circa 1909. Source: http://www.nccwatch.org/blunders/sparks.htm


#ThrowbackThursday: Pre-Place Bell

I think just about everyone who works downtown is anxiously awaiting the completion of the renovations to Place Bell. It feels like that scaffolding out front has been there forever! When I was doing research for a past Throwback Thursday on Cartier Square, I teased a future post on Place Bell. Today’s Throwback goes pre-never-ending renovations, pre-hot dog vendor out front, pre-“You Can’t Do That On Television” into,  pre-Place Bell entirely!

Would you look at that!? The gas station appears roughly where the Barrister House building is now (the south-west corner of the Elgin/Nepean intersection) and the squat five-storey building sits where Place Bell is now! Here’s a look at it from another angle:


These pictures are from the utterly fantastic blog Urbsite, and I highly suggest heading over there to check out this article on Place Bell.


#ThrowbackThursday: 25 Years Ago Today in Library News

Exactly 25 years ago today (June 1, 1992), the CCLA released a newsletter, and conveniently, had an entire page of excellent early-90s library news!


Hey, no smoking in the library, everyone! We don’t make the rules (we really don’t – the old non-smoking sign in the library references Ottawa By-Law 122/92 / 123/92!). I’d also like to note our fax prices have not changed in 25 years!

My favourite part of this newsletter is the final section on our new catalogue. Thank you to Steven Gaon, now former President of the CCLA, for being such an early adopter to our library technology!


#ThrowbackThursday: 2007 GCTC / CCLA Lawyer Play

With the 2017 GCTC / CCLA Lawyer Play just around the corner, this week’s Throwback Thursday is looking at the 2007 play!



Just in time for this year’s play, too, we are excited to announce that we’ve added a new Lawyer Play page to the CCLA website, with all the posters from years past. Also, if you still need tickets to this year’s performance – Macbeth – you can get those from the GCTC website.

ThrowbackThursday: Solicitors Conference 1993

The CCLA’s 23rd Annual East Region Solicitors Conference is coming up in a mere two weeks, so this week we’re throwing back to the first ever edition of this conference. The conference was held in November of 1993, with the educational sessions being held at the Manoir Papineau as opposed to the Château Montebello itself. The Solicitors Conference was held in the latter part of the year until 2002, which is the first year the conference was held in May. I’m quite partial to Montebello in the springtime, so I’d say that’s an excellent decision for this conference!



#ThrowbackThursday: Pre-Divorce Act Divorces

As I wrap up Throwback Thursday Family Law month, I had to include this little piece of history I learned about one day while going through old Statutes of Canada. This may be old news to many of you, but I thought it was quite interesting. As too did Library and Archives Canada, since I’m going to shamelessly steal text from them for this:

The first federal Divorce Act was passed by Parliament in 1968, establishing a uniform divorce law across Canada. Before that, there were different laws relating to divorce in different provinces.

From 1840 to 1968, many divorces in Canada were granted by private acts of the Parliament of Canada. Before 1867, only five divorce acts were passed and published either in the Statutes of the Province of Canada or in the Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Canada.

From 1867 to 1968, in some provinces a person wishing to obtain a divorce was first required to place a notice of intent to petition the government for an Act of Divorce in the Canada Gazette and in two newspapers in the district or county where the petitioner resided. It was to appear for a six-month period.

The petition would contain details such as the date and place of the marriage, and events surrounding the demise of the marriage. In the case of adultery or bigamy, a co-respondent was often named. If the petition was allowed, Parliament would pass an Act of Divorce nullifying the marriage.

Between 1867 and 1963, a transcript of the Act was published in the Statutes of Canada for the current year. Between 1964 and 1968, the transcript was published in the Journals of the Senate of Canada.

For more from Library and Archives Canada, click here.

#ThrowbackThursday: Family Law 1992

As mentioned last week, this month for Throwback Thursday, we’re looking at past family law conferences put on by the CCLA. This week’s entry is the program from our first official Annual Institute of Family Law. This seminar was held in May 1992, and though this schedule doesn’t indicate the location, it was held at the Faculty of Law at the University of Ottawa. Fun fact: this conference was actually jointly sponsored by the Faculty of Law at the University.