March 4, 2018 4:52 pm
Updated: March 4, 2018 7:14 pm

Saint-Laurent borough celebrates 125th anniversary

WATCH ABOVE: The Saint-Laurent borough is celebrating its 125th anniversary. What began as a tiny farming community has become one of Montreal's most vibrant and diverse neighborhoods. As Global's Dan Spector reports, city councillors from the area invited residents to a party, to honour their home.

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The Saint-Laurent borough turned their council chamber into a birthday party on Sunday, in celebration of their 125th anniversary.

“Today is a day for our citizens, our residents,” said longtime borough mayor Alan DeSousa.

Residents got a chance to take a photo in the mayor’s council chair and get tours of his and other area politicians’ offices.

Borough councilors were on hand to greet citizens and show them around.

Some people took the opportunity to reminisce about the long history of the area.

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“Apparently our home used to be a rhubarb field,” said Anne Romanowski, who grew up in Saint-Laurent and is now raising two sons there. Romanowski said she has no intention of leaving, and that one of her sons will even attend the same high school she did.

“I grew up going to Sir Winston Churchill, which turned into Lauren Hill Academy, and my son is going next year. We have long standing roots in Saint-Laurent and plan to stay,” she told Global News.

When it was founded in 1893, Saint-Laurent was a small, religious, farming community.

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“It was a small, homogenous community,” DeSousa said of Saint-Laurent’s early days.

“The people who lived here a long time were called the ‘dos blancs,’ the ‘white shirts,’ because when you were up on Mount-Royal you could see them working the fields with their white jackets on.”

Now, the area is one of the most diverse in Montreal.

“Today, we have over 166 nationalities that make up our community,” DeSousa said.

People Global News spoke to agreed that it was one of the area’s greatest strengths.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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