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80 years of history & archives at the Botanical Garden >> Chronology Français

Chronology of the Montréal Botanical Garden

1929 Brother Marie-Victorin, a brother of the Christian Schools and President of the Société de Biologie de Montréal, gives a speech in which he proposes that a Botanical Garden should be created in Montréal. In the audience is Camilien Houde, the city's forward-thinking mayor and one of his former students.

1930 The Association du Jardin Botanique de Montréal is founded by the Société de Biologie de Montréal.

1931 9 juin Official date for the foundation of the Montréal Botanical Garden.

1932 March 12 Work starts on the Garden, enabling Camilien Houde to provide jobs for unemployed workers in Montréal hit hard by the Great Depression.

Architect Lucien F. Kéroack designs the administration building in the Art Deco style.

A small administration pavilion (which today fronts the administration building), service greenhouse and heating plant are built.

1933 January 16 Camilien Houde is ousted as mayor and work on the Garden stals for the next four years. The site is left in disorder and the greenhouses are even turned into a rabbit hutch!

1935 Brother Marie-Victorin's book Flore Laurentienne, is officially launched. Taking advantage of the fact that Camilien Houde, recently re-elected mayor of Montréal, is in the audience, Marie-Victorin reiterates the City's need for a Botanical Garden. One passage from his speech remains famous:
We will soon be celebrating Montréal's three hundredth anniversary. You need to give a gift, a royal gift, to the City, our city. But Montréal is Ville-Marie, a woman...and you certainly can't give her a storm sewer or a police station...It's obvious what you must do! Give her a corsage for her lapel. Fill her arms to overflowing with all the roses and lilies of the field!

1936 May 6 The Botanical Garden springs to life once again! Brother Marie-Victorin is appointed Director. Henry Teuscher, a famous American botanist, horticulturalist and landscape architect, with whom Marie-Victorin had been working on the plans for the Garden by correspondence for several years already, is appointed Chief Horticulturalist. If Marie-Victorin is the founder of the Garden, Teuscher is its first designer. Work recommences and 2,000 men are hired.

1937 The main building goes up, according to the original plans drawn by architect Lucien F. Kéroack.

1938 Greenhouses for growing and maintaining the Garden's collections are built.

1944 July 15 Death of Marie-Victorin, who dies from injuries suffered in a car crash.

1954 A statue of Marie-Victorin is unveiled.

1958 The exhhibition greenhouses are built.

1970 The Arboretum is created.

1975 The Société d'animation du Jardin et de l'Institut botaniques (now the Friends of the Garden) is founded.

1976 The Rose Garden is built.

1980 Montréal City hosts the Floralies Internationales de Montréal.

Mr. Pierre Bourque becomes director of the Montréal Botanical Garden.

1988 The Japanese Garden is built and open.

1989 The Japanese Pavilion is built and open.

1990 The Insectarium is open.

The Chinese Garden is built

1991 The Chinese Garden is open.

1992 The Forest of the Montréals of France is created amd the Butterfly tent opens.
Note These spaces were later closed.

1994 Mr. Pierre Bourque retires as director of the Botanical Garden. He becomes mayor of Montréal in the Fall of 1994.

1995 The Reception Centre and the Molson Hospitality Greenhouse open.

1996 The Chlorophyll Room opens.
The Tree House opens.
Fuji Pavilion opens.
The Administration Building is renovated.

1999 The Courtyard of the Senses opens.

The Botanical Garden website is online.

2001 The First-Nations Garden opens.

2002 The Tea Garden at the Japanese Garden opens.

2006 The Botanical Garden celebrates its 75th anniversary.

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Last Update: 2014-06-18
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