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Saint-Louis Forts and Châteaux
National Historic Site

Yvon Desloges, Historian

Location and Recognition

For more than 200 years of French and then English rule in Quebec, the Saint-Louis forts and châteaux served as the official residence and seat of power for most governors.

Founded in 1608 by Samuel de Champlain, Quebec City was the capital of the French colony until 1759, when British troops conquered it. The city and the colony were brought into the British empire in 1763 by the treatise of Paris. Canada and the city of Quebec remained an English colony until the confederation of Canada in 1867.

Location of the forts and châteaux

Remnants of the Saint-Louis forts and châteaux are located at the top of the cliff overlooking the Saint Lawrence River, immediately beneath the Dufferin Terrace and next to the Fairmont Château Frontenac hotel. This is the heart of the historic district of Old Quebec, which was included on UNESCO's list of world heritage sites in 1985.

The location of the forts and Châteaux The location of the forts and châteaux is indicated in yellow and the upper and lower gardens in red.
© Parks Canada

The current boundaries of the Château Frontenac The boundaries of the Château Frontenac hotel appear in green, while the blue outline shows the location of the Saint-Louis forts and châteaux. The bounds of the actual national historic site are shown in red.
© Parks Canada
Recognition of the forts and châteaux

In November 2001, the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada recognized the national historic significance of the Saint-Louis forts and châteaux.


The Forts , The Châteaux , The Gardens, and The Terraces

French Period 1608 to 1759
Champlain founds Quebec 1608  
  1620 First fort and corps de logis (Champlain)
  1626 Second fort (Champlain)
The English occupy Quebec until 1632 1629  
  1636 Third fort (Huault de Montmagny)
  1648 First château (Huault de Montmagny)
The upper garden is established
New France becomes a royal colony 1663  
Quebec is attacked by the English 1690  
  1692 Fourth fort (Frontenac)
  1694 Second château (Frontenac)
  1719 Expansion of the second château
Expansion of the second château 1755  
Military Regime 1759 to 1763
The English take Quebec 1759  
Capitulation of New France 1760  
British Period 1763 to 1867
The Treaty of Paris :France loses Canada and the Mississippi
Royal Proclamation
  1766 Major repairs to the second château (Murray)
Québec Act 1774  
  1784 Château Haldimand (Haldimand)
The Constitutional Act, 1791 created Upper and Lower Canada 1791  
  1808 Repairs and upward expansion of the 2nd château (Craig)
  1834 Château Saint-Louis burns
Patriotes uprising 1837  
  1838 Upper garden opened to the public
First Durham Terrace
Act of Union, Upper and Lower Canada 1840  
  1854 Second Durham Terrace
Canadian period 1867 up to present
Canadian confederation 1867  
  1879 Dufferin Terrace