houses-of-parliament-ottawa-canada-1892

HOUSES OF PARLIAMENT, OTTAWA, CANADA — In 1858 Queen Victoria selected Ottawa as the seat of the Canadian Government, and it is consequently the capital of the Dominion of Canada. It is a city of only about 40,000 inhabitants, but its Government Buildings would do honor to any capital. They form three sides of a quadrangle and are situated on an eminence 150 feet above the Ottawa River (Parliament Hill). Covering an area of nearly four acres, their cost was four million dollars. They are substantial and yet extremely ornamental in appearance. The general style of their architecture is Italian-Gothic. The arches of the doors and windows are of red sandstone, and the columns and arches of the legislative chambers are of marble. The roofs are rendered attractive by means of variously colored slates, and the towers and pinnacles are adorned with iron trellis-work. The interior decorations of this edifice are also very rich and tasteful, including the Viceregal canopy and throne, a marble statue and portrait of Queen Victoria, and full-length likenesses of George III and Queen Charlotte by Sir Joshua Reynolds. The Library of the Government is a very handsome and valuable portion of this structure, and contains more than 100,000 volumes. Ottawa has in addition to these Houses of Parliament, a fine Cathedral with lofty spires, and an imposing Catholic institution known as the Gray Nunnery. At one extremity of the town are the famous Chaudière Falls, in which the Ottawa River plunges over a rough precipice 40 feet high and 200 feet wide. The “Chaudière” itself (or cauldron) is of unknown depth. The sounding line has not found bottom even with a length of 300 feet. It may perhaps be added that down the Ottawa River, which is the chief tributary of the St. Lawrence, a steamboat makes a daily trip to Montreal (101 miles away) in about ten hours; a pleasant relief from railroad travel. (from John L. Stoddard, Glimpses of the world; a portfolio of photographs of the marvelous works of God and man – 1892)

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