Jeanne Mance #OnThisDay

On 8th of October 1645 the first hospital in Montreal, Quebec was developed, the Hôtel-Dieu de Montréal by nurse Jeanne Mance . Hôtel-Dieu is the name given to hospitals established by nursing orders of nuns. It was funded by Madame de Bullion, the widow of one of Louis XIII’s superintendents of finance.

statue of Anne Mance with her comforting a child
Jean Gagnon, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Jeanne Mance (c born 1606 in Langres, France; died 18 June 1673 Montreal, New France) was an extraordinary woman and one of the founders of Montreal.

She was the daughter of Catherine Émonnot and Charles Mance, a prosecutor for the king in Langres, an important diocese in the northern Burgundy. After her mother died, Jeanne cared for eleven brothers and sisters. She went on to care for victims of the Thirty Years War and the plague.

When she travelled to New France it was in the early stages of being colonised by France.

Jeanne Mance and Paul Chomedey de Maisonneuve arrived at the Island of Montreal in the spring of 1642. They founded the new city on May 17, 1642, on land granted by the Governor. That same year Mance began operating a hospital in her home.

Three years later (1645), with a donation of 6000 francs by Angélique Bullion, she opened a hospital on Rue Saint-Paul. She directed its operations for 17 years.

You can read more of her amazing story here: Jeanne Mance

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