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Boer War Memorial, Montreal

4.0
#417 of 640 in Things to do in Montreal
The Boer War Memorial is a monument of sculptor George W. Hill located at Dorchester Square in downtown Montreal, in Quebec, Canada.
The Boer War Memorial, sculpted by George W. Hill (1862–1934), was unveiled at the Dominion Square (now known as Dorchester Square) on May 24, 1907. It is dedicated to the Montrealers who fought alongside the British during the Boer War. This statement on the dedication is not correct. The inscription on the memorial says 'In grateful recognition of the patriotism and public spirit shown by Lord Strathcona and Mount Royal in raising and equipping a regiment of horse for service in South Africa as evidence of his sympathy with the cause of imperial unity.' On the opposite side of the memorial is the inscription, 'To commemorate the heroic devotion of the Canadians who fell in the South African War and the valour of their comrades.' There is no mention of Montrealers.
It is the only equestrian statue in Montreal, and atypically, is not mounted, but restrained. The Boer War Memorial faces north, towards Mount Royal Cross, which would have been visible from the square up until 1929. Around the base of the statue, copper reliefs and the names of each battle. In 2014 the memorial was facing south-east. The Dorchester Square had been restored but the Place du Canada (containing Montreal's First World War cenotaph) was still fenced off.
The Boer War was widely unpopular in Quebec society, viewed as an imperial war. Prime Minister of Canada Wilfrid Laurier opposed the war, but ultimately compromised with the proposal for militia and volunteers en lieu of conscription.
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  • The Boer War Memorial is located in one of the parks in downtown Montreal and is a nice dedication. Certainly worth visiting.  more »
  • The 1900 Battle of Paardeberg (Horse Mountain) was the major battle that claimed the lives of 320 Brisith soldiers, leaving 942 wounded. The tide turned with the surrender of the Boer army...  more »

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