Saint-Ours Canal National Historic Site of Canada
Canal de Saint-Ours
Links and documents
1830/01/01 to 1833/01/01
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Saint-Ours Canal National Historic Site of Canada is situated on the east bank of the Richelieu River, 52 km from Chambly and 23 km from Sorel Québec. It is located in a 5-hectare park and primarily consists of one enclosed lock between the east bank of the Richelieu River and Darvard Island, as well as a dam.
Saint-Ours Canal was designated a national historic site because:
- it is one of Canada's national canals,
- situated on the Richelieu River, it commemorates, together with the Chambly Canal, the role played by this navigation route in the 19th and 20th centuries as an inland system of canals linking Montréal to New York through the Richelieu River, Lake Champlain and the Hudson River.
The heritage value of Saint-Ours Canal lies in the inter-relationships of the components of its cultural landscape which have survived to this day: the Richelieu River, Darvard Island, the canal route, the dam, the buildings and archaeological remnants of canal activity. The Saint-Ours Canal was constructed by the Board of Works of the United Canadas as a commercial canal in 1844-1849, although the current lock dates from renovations in 1930-1933. Additional alterations occurred in 1960-1969 and 1974.
Source: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, June 1987.
Key elements contributing to the heritage value of this site include:
- the completeness of the canal's historic cultural landscape (which includes a portion of the Richelieu River, Darvard Island, the canal route, a dam, buildings and archaeological remnants of canal activity) and the historical inter-relationships between these components,
- features of the present canal that provide tangible evidence of its historical use and evolution over time, particularly:
- the present lock situated between Darvard Island and the east bank,
- the canal route which forms a channel between the footprint of the lock, its walls, and its leading coffer dam,
- the regulating dam connecting the west bank of the river to Darvard Island,
- the parallelism existing between the footprints of the original canal and the present canal,
- the fabric and forms of earlier canal and canal-related components that witness its route, technology and composition in earlier times, particularly:
- the footprint of the earlier canal,
- the remains of the first lock from which the historic lower entry to the canal is still visible,
- the relationship between early canal buildings (and their remains) and the canal itself.
Government of Canada
Historic Sites and Monuments Act
National Historic Site of Canada
1844/01/01 to 1849/01/01
1960/01/01 to 1969/01/01
1974/01/01 to 1974/01/01
Theme - Category and Type
- Developing Economies
- Technology and Engineering
- Developing Economies
- Communications and Transportation
Function - Category and Type
- Canal or Canal Works
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec
Cross-Reference to Collection