The Mouillepied Historical Society

In Saint-Lambert the word Mouillepied has a familiar ring to it. Not only does it identify our Society, it is also part of the name of a popular day care center. But where does this name—which translates to feet-wetter—originate from? Well, one has to go back to 1686, to the Régime français, when a part of the La Prairie de la Magdeleine Seigneury was referred to as the coast of the Mouillepied. Most probably this piece of land, which in the Saint-Lambert of our days stretches from Victoria Avenue to the boundary with Brossard, received its toponym due to the presence of a very clayish soil. Since clay does not absorb water readily, the Chemin du roi in this part along the river was often inundated, especially in the springtime, and hence wetted many feet.

 

In December of 1974, a group of volunteers created the Cultural and Historical Society of Saint-Lambert. Emphasis was placed on the fine arts, represented by the Galerie du Centre, and on the history of Saint-Lambert, for which the Mouillepied Historical Committee was established and lodged in the Desaulniers House on the corner of Notre Dame and Webster. Its first president was Steve Parker.

At the beginning of 1980, the committee became autonomous under the name of Mouillepied Historical Society. It started publishing its first reviews pertaining to the local past and organized exhibitions and conferences. A book, illustrated by old photographs, commemorated the 125th anniversary of our community in 1982
Twenty five years later, in 2007, the Society, this time celebrating 150 years of our city, published a much appreciated book, Saint Lambert Through the Years. For the same occasion a historical walking circuit, with a starting point in Place du Village, was established.

 

Since its foundation 40 years ago, the Society has been constantly enlarging its collection of historical documents, research papers, photographs, media articles, books and artifacts. It continues its mission to make the history of our community known to a wider audience and shares through expositions and printed matter the latest findings of historical research. It also keeps an ever watchful eye on the preservation of our built heritage.

In order to go forward, the Society asks interested parties to share photographs—even images of the 1960s and 1970s are now history. Long time residents might want to give testimony of some hitherto unknown family stories, or donate newspaper clippings and small artifacts. When renovating an old house, one can obtain important information as to its original appearance from the Mouillepied Society, thus connecting the past of Saint-Lambert with future générations.

 

We would like to thank the deputy of Laporte, madame Nicole Ménard, and the City of Saint-Lambert, for their financial support, helping to make this web site possible.