Overlooked was this small oil painting of an anonymous "... Debartzch" girl.
Dominique Debartzch 1782-1846: Dominique Debartzch right was the Seigneur at St. Charles on the Richelieu River, south of St. Denis. During the Rebellion of 1837 his house became the center of one of the biggest battles.
Debartzch opposed the rebels; they used his house as a fortification against the British army as it advanced from Fort Chambly north to mop up rebel resistance. Some 100 French-Canadians were killed during the British attack, some said many more. The others fled. The Debartzch mansion was burned to the ground during the fighting.
Great Canadian Diary: During the rebel activities in her neighbourhood, the teenaged Rosalie-Caroline Debartzch kept a diary of what she saw and heard.
Diary Dollars: In January 2004, at a huge sale of 1837 Rebellion memorabilia in Montreal, Rosalie-Caroline Debartzch's Diary of those days fetched the largest price of any item sold - $14,000.
Rosalie-Caroline? How do we know the anonymous Debartzch is Caroline? Dominique above had four daughters; two married Polish gentlemen, the other a minor Anglophone.
But Caroline married Samuel Cornwallis Monk in 1844 at St. Marc. He became a judge and they moved to Montreal. The Monks were a highly prestigious early Canadian family.
The antique estate sale, where her picture and that of her father surfaced, was full of intermarried Monk, Gould, Delorme, and Debartzch family portraits and memorabilia.
How could it be any other Debartzch daughter than the one that married into this elite Canadian family? Could this captivating face be any other than that precocious authoress?
Caroline's daughter Louise Amelia Monk, 1850-1874, also became a teenage diarist of note (1867-1871) and a great source for Canadian historians who want to research life among the bourgeoisie in Montreal in the mid-nineteenth century. Sadly Louise died at only 24.
Right a later painting of Caroline c 1855.
|Great Canadian Heritage Treasure||
Rosalie-Caroline Debartzch - "Petite Caroline"
Right is a small painting, and one of the most enchanting portraits we have ever seen, which we discovered at a Toronto auction. It was labeled on the back "...... Debartzch, daughter of Dominique Debartzch, Born at St. Marc. Painted by Lockwood."
Boring you say, like most of the people who looked at it and passed it by. But behind the painting are several great Canadian stories!
At the same auction was an oil of her father, Pierre Dominique Debartzch (below right) who lived at St. Marc, on the Richelieu River, in Quebec. The oil on paper was very badly torn, yet still went for big dollars.
|Rosalie-Caroline Debartzch, c 1844 - Wm Lockwood|
|Orig. painted photo c. 1844 - Size - 5.5" x 6.5"
Found - Toronto, ON
Labeled on the back "...... Debartzch, daughter of Dominique Debartzch, Born at St. Marc. Painted by Lockwood." John Russell Estate
William Lockwood (1803-1866)
William Lockwood, to whom this painting is attributed, had links to early photographic pioneers.
In 1854, André Disdéri in France, patented the carte de visite, whereby small photo portraits were put on business cards. The idea caught on like wildfire around the world. Artists who feared that the photography craze would wipe out their livelihood, soon promoted the idea of painting over the photos to add colour and realism.
William Lockwood (1803-1866), was one of the earliest who painted over cartes de visite in Canada, in Quebec.
Above is a carte de visite photo taken in Paris - and so stamped on the back - by André Disdéri himself in 1862, and over painted by William Lockwood in Quebec City.
Judging by Caroline Debartzch's dress and hairstyle, Lockwood may very well have painted her portrait photo as early as the 1840s
William Notman & Painting Over Photos
In the 1860s and 70s, leading Canadian photographer William Notman 1826-1891, hired some of the leading painters of the time (FA Verner, O Jacobi, GH Russell, JH Sandham) to paint over his large photo portraits.
Rougemont Cider Farm
La Cidrerie Michel Jodoin traces its roots back to Pierre Debartzch.
In 1816, he named a serpentine path around a hill (Rougemont) on his estate, "Petite Caroline," in honour of his daughter Rosalie-Caroline.
Offering a magnificent view of his holdings, Pierre developed Rougemont into a huge apple orchard which, almost two hundred years later, is flourishing famously and producing cider which still bears Caroline's name (bottles above). The original footpath too - now a road - is still called "Petite Caroline."
Jean-Claude Gagnon, a gauche, vice-président de la SAQ, et Michel Jodoin, exhibent respectivement Fine Caroline et Pom de vie, dernières-nées de la cidrerie de Rougemont.
|Great Canadian Heritage Treasure||Canada's Lost Art Treasures:
Found at a recent Toronto auction of great Canadian antique art, was the picture left, modestly titled as Hyacinthe Simon Delorme, and listed as an early 19th century oil.
Jacques-Hyacinthe Simon-Delorme 1720-1776: In fact it is a picture of the second Seigneur of the Seigneurie of Saint Hyacinthe, Quebec. Simon-Delorme played a big role in developing the area and looking after his tenants. He was so fondly regarded that, in fact, it is after him that the town of Saint Hyacinthe is named.
The portrait is a huge 24 x 30" and is housed in a massive and ancient bird's eye maple frame. It has some very old "age cracks" in it. When one compares these with other frames of the early 19th century, it could very well be that this oil may actually date from the late 18th century, perhaps from when he was still alive...
This painting was part of a large collection of Monk, Gould, Debartzch, family paintings from the early and mid-nineteenth century that went up on the auction block from a famous Canadian antique collector's estate.
Jacques-Hyacinthe Simon-Delorme gave a large plot of land on the Richelieu River to a nephew, Pierre Dominique Debartzch (see above).
|Jacques-Hyacinthe Simon-Delorme, c 1770 - Wm Berczy|
|Orig. oil on canvas c. 1770s - Size - 24" x 30"
Found - Toronto, ON
In orig. c 1800 bird's-eye maple frame
Prov - John Russell Estate
The picture was also attributed to famous early Canadian painter William Berczy by Berczy biographer John Andre and so listed and illustrated in his book William Berczy, published in 1967.
One can also confirm it is the founder of Saint Hyacinthe, by comparing the oil with other pictures of him from other sources (right).
|Copyright Goldi Productions Ltd. - 2009|