Bourdon Residence

The residence of a former prisoner who became mayor of Farnham

St. Paul Street, 1881

Overview of rue Saint-Paul indicating the house and business of Louis Bourdon.

Text version of the audio

NARRATOR (female voice)
Before settling in Farnham, in 1849, at the age of 32, M. Louis Bourdon had already lived a very full life. Born in Montréal, at the age of 19, he married Césarie Papineau, the daughter of Major Louis Papineau of Saint-Césaire.

NARRATOR (male voice)
In 1837, he was imprisoned in Montréal because of his deep involvement with the Rébellions uprisings against the British Crown. Shortly after his imprisonment, he was released without bail. However, he was arrested for a second time, in December 1838 … this time he was tried for high treason before the Court-Martial and was sentenced to death by hanging!

NARRATOR (female voice)
But the story doesn’t end here! His sentence was commuted to a lifetime deportation to Australia. He left the country aboard a ship in 1839 along with 57 other political prisoners and arrived six months later at Longbottom Camp, a small penal settlement west of the city of Sydney.
NARRATOR (male voice)
Determined to return home, he escaped in the autumn of 1842 aboard a French whaling ship. After a ten-month-long journey, he arrived in the United States and settled with his family in Vermont. In 1844, after receiving a pardon from Her Majesty, he returned to Canada and lived a few years in Saint-Césaire, before moving to Farnham where he opened a business.

NARRATOR (female voice)
Besides becoming the owner of a general store, located on the corner of rue Yamaska Est and Saint-Paul (known at the time as Chemin de la Reine), he also instigated, along with a few other citizens, the founding of the West Farnham Bridge Co. This company was established with the purpose of building the city’s first bridge in 1851. Shortly thereafter, he was elected mayor of the West Farnham parish municipality. He held this office until the Village of West Farnham was incorporated on January 1, 1862, and for which he served as mayor less than two years, since he died in August 1863, at the age of 45.

Extract of
City of Farnham Historical Tour

City of Farnham Historical Tour image circuit

Presented by : Ville de Farnham

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