Photographer: Jérôme Feeney
Source: Société d’histoire de la Rivière-du-Nord
After Antoine Labelle accepted the position of Deputy Minister of Colonisation, his duties required that he travel to Quebec City regularly. One of the places he stayed was a rooming house at 48 Rue Saint-Ursule, near the legislature, that was run by a Mrs. Flanagan. It is here that the curé, apparently, lived his final hours. After his health suddenly worsened, doctors recommended complete bed rest. He even underwent emergency surgery, probably in his room. A second procedure was attempted, but in vain. It was too late: nothing more could be done for the man, who passed away at 2:15 a.m. on January 4, 1891. Curé Labelle humbly asked his loyal friend Isidore Martin, who was at his bedside, to take care of his mother, whom he would not have the chance to embrace one last time before dying.
The house, built in 1847 to plans by architect Pierre Gauvreau, was first occupied by Laughlan T. McPherson, a notary. It then passed into the hands of private individuals, and was used as a rooming house several times. It underwent alterations and restorations over the years, but has retained much of its original built form, except for the coachway, which is now the front door. The ground floor is currently home to a gourmet restaurant.