CULTURAL TUESDAYS IN SPRING 2015 The Canadian horse, also known as The Little Iron Horse




Montréal, March 2 – Maison Saint-Gabriel has planned a series of conferences for the 350th anniversary of the arrival of the first horses in New France. Formerly a farmhouse owning Canadian Horses, Maison Saint-Gabriel will highlight this anniversary with many events.


Tuesday, March 10, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.


with Pearl Duval, historian and equestrian journalist

When we think about our ancestors and their way of life, one of the most persistent images that comes to mind is that of compact and dashing little horses determinedly pulling sleighs filled with joyful party-goers, racing over frozen landscapes or arriving at a house filled with celebration. This mental image comes to us from Canadian painter Cornelius Krieghoff (1815-1872), who was able to accurately portray the world surrounding this little horse and, above all, its characteristics: strength, hardiness and speed. But where exactly did these qualities, which were so beneficial for the settlers in New France, come from? And why did France have to send horses to its colonies?


Tuesday, March 24, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.


with Charles Etienne Ménard, equestrian instructor/trainer

To familiarize ourselves with the Canadian horse, we must begin by understanding its psychology. This will help us understand why “it is what it is and does what it does”; why these character traits make it such a versatile horse; why for 350 out of 400 years it was used for pulling carts before it was mounted; what made it a true asset for the living conditions here. Weather permitting, the equestrian instructor/trainer, Charles Etienne Ménard, will give a presentation near the Marguerite Bourgeoys Park with his Canadian horse first unbridled and then mounted with neither saddle nor bridle.


Tuesday, April 14, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.


with Richard Blackburn and Gus Cothran

In 2009, Richard Blackburn rode 4000 km on his Canadian horse from Québec City to Texas. His goal was to demonstrate the endurance and robustness of the little iron horse and to deliver 50 samples of DNA of the breed to the Dr. Gus Cothran, an equine geneticist at Texas A&M University. This incredible adventure, documented in a film entitled The Legend of the Canadian Horse, had a historic conclusion when Dr. Cothran made the scientific demonstration, using the DNA, that the Canadian horse is the ancestor of the famous Morgan horse, and the first horse breed of North America. Richard Blackburn and Gus Cothran will be reunited for the first time in order to explain the results of this important study.


These conferences will be held at the Catherine-Crolo pavilion

Reservations required: 514 935-8136


Entrance Fees: $15.00 and $10.00 for Friends of Maison Saint-Gabriel (taxes included)


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