Page 56 - Yvon LeBlanc, Architect Fortress of Louisbourg
ISSUE : Issue 34
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1983/8/1
The Lartigue House, below The Lartigue house is interesting, because there were quite a lot of people living in there. And at first glance, they could have been quite squeezed in. But it worked out that they could have had about 18 peo? ple in that, without being all that over? crowded. The way it was laid out. (Do you mean, the way you chose to lay it out?) No, the way I found out that it probably was, by following the indications. I chose be? cause I was being led--that there were the two fireplace bases, and all that. And al? so, led by a typical way that houses were at that time: houses of a certain size, where the rooms were in groups, in suites. You find that in elaborate townhouses, great big houses. Even in this rather small one, as far as townhouses go, you could have a group of three rooms on one side of the stair. And on the other side of the stair, you could have a group of three rooms. And often the rooms go one in? to the other. We had enough room to make a hallway; and they often had that. Because the sense of privacy at that time was a bit different from ours, since beds had curtains around--a room was a room, not necessarily a bedroom. A living room could easily have a bed in it. Or a bedroom could also be for living in, on account of the curtains. So, people travelling through a room was not that unheard of. And in this house, it would reflect that quite easily. Although, we knew something about the house: we found the, foundation and we had the elevation (a drawing of the face of the house). That's all we had. And the date that he died. And the number of his family, including a daughter who had married. As part of the dowry or wedding arrangement, we knew Lartigue was going to lodge them for a period of time. And with them in there, with a couple of children-- I think there were some servants--they could have fitted there quite easily, not more than two per room. Some of the rooms were smallish. And still leaving a big gen? eral area where they could have dined, where the stair came down--leaving a larg? ish room for him to conduct his business as a judge. (Do you ever have these people come to you in any way?) I dearly wish that they would! Oh, I dream of that! It's not that I dream of them as such--no, I haven't dreamt of them. But I find myself speaking in the present sometimes, of that time. People have a good laugh at me, that I speak of them as present, or speak of "us." For instance, about the _Royal Battery out there. It's a very sad s'tory about that, how it never was used. Because at the first siege, they were in the process of doing some repairs on it, and they felt they could not defend it. It had some weak? nesses; there were some hills around. But it had been made to shoot at the entrance to the harbour, to protect the harbour. So anyway, they decided to abandon it, when the English were coming, (Because they came by land.) Yes. That is a very sore point to me, because the engineer, Verrier (here from 1724 to 1745), he's really my predecessor here. When they decided that they could not de? fend the Royal Battery, and decided to give it up, they discussed the possibility of blowing it up completely. It was Ver? rier, the engineer, who was instrumental in stopping that decision, making the de? cision that they should spike the cannon to stop them from being fired. And then withdraw all the ammunition. Now, that was decided. Some people have looked very crossly at Verrier for doing that, that he did that because he was very proud of his Royal Battery, he didn't want to see it Jilgy''
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