Speaking of churches and things that happened a hundred years ago, I also found in Massicotte some images of the 1911 fire at Saint-Jean-Baptiste church on Rachel. If you look at the existing building critically you see that the massive classical frontage visually overbalances the structure. It originally had a dome, shown at left, as a counterweight to the towers, pediment and portico, but the dome was lost in the fire and the roof was simplified to the current plain copper covering when it was rebuilt between 1912 and 1914.
Several papers covered the fire. I love the idea of an editor sending someone to wake up an artist to tell him to grab his sketchbook and rush to the scene, especially for a big story where multiple artists must have competed for a good spot.
It must have been an apocalyptic scene when the dome plunged down through the roof. La Patrie says: “Cédant sous la pression des ruines croulantes, les assises du dôme ont fléchi, la croix s’est penchée et le dôme tout entier, entraîné par sa propre pésanteur, s’écroule au milieu d’un fracas épouvantable” and La Presse: “Les flammes, après avoir envahi le jubé des orgues se propagèrent rapidement dans toute la partie supérieure du temple et l’édifice est voué à une destruction complète.” French is such a great language for describing epic events like this.