2017: Montreal celebrates is 375th birthday!
2015: Justin Trudeau, the current prime minister of Canada, assumes office.
1995: In an incredibly close referendum on Quebec’s independence from Canada, 50.48% of the populace voted “no” compared to the 49.42% who voted “yes”.
1980: Montreal’s internationally famous jazz festival kicks off – it’s one of the city’s main events!
1976: The summer Olympic games are held in Montreal. Gold medal winners this year included Bruce Jenner for decathlon, Sugar Ray Leonard for boxing and Nadia Comăneci for all-around gymnastics, the first Olympian in history to score a perfect 10.
1969-70: Tensions over Quebec sovereignty elevate with the bombing of the Montreal Stock Exchange and kidnappings causing the
October Crisis, both committed by the Front de libération du Québec.
1968: Celine Dion, Montreal’s most famous daughter, is born. Wouldn’t you recognise that French Canadian accent anywhere?
1966: Star Trek: The Original Series debuts on TV. Did you know that William Shatner (aka Captain Kirk) is from Montreal?
1939: This year sees the introduction of the flag of Montreal, depicting a red cross with a blue fleur-de-lys, a red rose of Lancaster, a thistle and a shamrock (representing French, English, Scottish and Irish influence respectively).
1933: Two of Montreal’s most famous markets, Jean-Talon and Atwater, open. They’re just as popular today as they were when they opened.
1920: Americans flood into Montreal once the sun goes down for prohibition-free nightlife. Bet you didn’t know Montreal was a party capital!
1919: Montreal gets a little less hungry… Fairmount Bagel opens, introducing the Montreal-style bagel (sweeter, thinner and always made in wood-fire ovens).
1885: The city suffers a summer smallpox epidemic, wiping out over 3,000 Montrealers.
1879: This is the story of Montreal’s most famous ghost – in the seedy Griffintown neighbourhood of Montreal, two prostitutes compete for a client. In a fit of jealous rage, Susan Kennedy decapitates Mary Gallagher with an axe. Legend has it that Mary appears once every seven years to search for her head. (Sidebar: Griffintown, which was once unattractive and industrial, is now an up-and-coming gentrified neighbourhood full of art galleries, boutiques, restaurants and every seven years, ghost-hunters!)
1878: Montreal University is established, and today has a total enrolment of almost 50,000 students!
1852: The tragic Great Fire of 1852 wipes out more than half of Montreal’s homes, leaving upwards of 10,000 people homeless (roughly one-fifth of the population at the time).
1838: A steamboat called the Lord Sydenham tackles the Lachine Rapids.
1829: The stunning Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal is consecrated after five years of construction.
1763: The Treaty of Paris ends the Seven Years’ War between Great Britain and France.
1689: Construction begins on the famous Lachine Canal.
1646-53: War breaks out between the French settlers and the Iroquois.
1663: The newly settled area of Canada, known as New France, becomes a royal province of France.
1603: Samuel de Champlain visits Montreal for the first time. Eight years later, he would establish the fur trade here.
1535: Explorer Jacques Cartier dubs the river flowing through Montreal, the St Lawrence.
1000 (approx.): The area surrounding present-day Montreal is inhabited by the Iroquois, Algonquin and Huron tribes.