History pieces of the weekend

Radio-Canada did a piece (text and audio) on the cobblestones in Old Montreal this week, although I’m slightly nettled by the statement “La ruelle est très montréalaise dans notre esprit, mais c’est une invention anglaise qui date du 19e siècle” – you know, it can be both.

(I learned during a Mois de l’archéologie event a couple of summers ago that the old blue-grey cobbles are not made of stone, but of slag from iron foundries. This tailed with my mother’s observation once that broken cobbles smell bad – an iron and sulfur compound, I’d guess. The new reddish or grayish street stones in Old Montreal are definitely stone, though.)

The Journal history piece this weekend is about the blessing of bicycles and motorcycles that used to take place at an east-end sanctuary back in the day. The sanctuary is still there.