Archaeological Excavations – Des Braves Park

Archaeological Excavations – Des Braves Park

PRESS RELEASE – For immediate release
Archaeological excavations
Plunge into the past of Des Braves Park

Québec, July, 2011 – With archaeologists at your side, take part in the excavations due to take place at Des Braves Park from next July 18 to September 9. The National Battlefields Commission invites the public at large to immerse themselves for half a day into the park’s history, totally free of charge.

The excavations, started in 2010, will continue with the public in order to locate the tannery and, if possible, delimit the exact location of the Dumont Mill, an important site during the Battle of Sainte-Foy, in 1760. The exploration of the Henry Pinguet house remains will resume this summer. Under the supervision of archaeologist Philippe Picard and his group, amateurs will get the chance to experience real excavations on an authentic historic site. Please note that no pay will be offered to participants, no experience is necessary and the required tools will be put at their disposal.

History of the site:

In 1646, Henry Pinguet became the first known occupant of the land where Des Braves Park is currently located. Jean-Baptiste Dumont became its owner in 1741. At the time it held several buildings, including a house, a tannery and a tanning mill. During the Battle of Sainte-Foy considerable damage was caused to the buildings, so much so that the ruins gradually disappeared over the following years. In 1854, the Société Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Québec purchased a parcel of land to erect a monument dedicated to the victims of the battle. In 1910, the National Battlefields Commission became the owner of this land and of a few neighbouring parcels, which were later to make up Des Braves Park.

The first trial excavations on the site were led in 1993 to test an assumption concerning the location of the Dumont Mill. It has not been located to this day. However, household remains dating from the French regime have been discovered, from the home of Henry Pinguet.

Battlefields Park is the first national historic park in Canada, it includes Des Braves Park and the Plains of Abraham. The development of Des Braves Park, which covers five hectares, was based on the plans of landscape architect Frederick G. Todd and was completed in 1915.

Information and reservations:

Those interested in taking part in these excavations must register in advance. Places are limited to two people per half-day (from 9:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. and from 1:00 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.), from Monday afternoon to Friday. No training or previous experience required. This is a free activity not intended for children (13 years old and over, accompanied by an adult).
418 648-3506

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