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Winter Carnival Medals of Montreal

Updated: Aug 9, 2021

by Barry Uman

Historical Background:

It was on March 3, 1875, that the first game of ice hockey, as we know it, was played at the Victoria Rink in Montreal. Thus unknowingly, the ancient myth of winter immobility, was finally dashed forever.

The first definite suggestion of a winter carnival, came from Robert McGibbon. At the annual meeting of Montreal Snowshoe Club (latter to become part of the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association) in February 1882, the members provided the support for McGibbon’s Idea. If all the clubs were to co-operate in such a venture, their united efforts would surely result in a mass celebration, that would attract many visitors and tourists to Montreal.

By autumn, the concrete plans had reached the point, where such powerful interests, as the Grand Trunk Railway and the new Windsor Hotel, (which was the largest in the Dominion at this time) indicated their willingness to contribute. Soon other commercial firms followed their example and it soon became apparent, that there would be no lack of sponsors and money.

The opening day of the Montreal Winter Carnival, was scheduled for January 24, 1883 and it was proclaimed a half holiday. The program was to be a spectacular event. There was to be a curling bonspiel with visiting rinks competing each night under the glare of “20” electric lights; a snowshoe steeplechase from Dominion Square to Mount Royal; trotting races on the ice of the St. Lawrence River; hockey matches at the Victoria Rink; many skating and snowshoeing races; a fancy dress carnival, and a concert at Queen’s Hall.

The great drawing card of the winter carnival was ice palace. It was a mammoth structure located on Dominion Square and it resembled a medieval castle with towers and turrets. The first one was 90 feet square with 30 foot towers at each corner and a large central column that rose 80 feet. The walls were composed of huge blocks of ice, each about 40 by 20 inches, ranging in thickness from 14 to 20 inches. They were shaped with an ax or adze, just if cut stone, except water took the place of mortar. The roof was composed of cedar branches and when it was sprayed with water, it hardened to a solid mass of ice. Latter ice palaces would be even larger and they would be built on the slopes of Mount Royal.

Dominion Square was illuminated with multi-coloured lamps and flags; the Tricolour (France); the Union Jack (U.K.); the Red Ensign (Canada); the Stars and Stripes (U.S.A.) and St. George Cross, all representing the multiculture of Montreal.

On the opening day, the great moment came with darkness, as 25000 people viewed this spectacle. At eight o'clock, thousands of snowshoers marched towards the square, with the glow of their torches, signalling their arrival. The noise was overwhelming, with Roman candles and rockets clashing with the firing of the Victoria Rifles.

The outstanding success of the first Montreal Winter Carnival in 1883, gave birth to a succession of continuous winter carnivals, not only in Montreal, but latter at Quebec City, Hamilton, Ottawa, St. Paul Minnesota, Burlington-Vermont, and Leadville-Colorado. Modern day winter carnivals are still celebrated across Canada, especially at Québec City and Montréal area.

The chief novelty of the 1884 and latter carnivals, was the mock battle and the storming of the ice palace. An army of snowshoers with lighted torches, would face a number of defenders, usually consisting of government troops. When the siege was to begin, both parties would fire their rockets, which would sound like rifle shots. Balls of fire, rockets and torches would add to the feeling of a real battle.

The golden years of the Montreal Winter Carnival, lasted from 1883 to 1887. It was terminated because of complaints, that it gave the impression that Montreal suffered from severe winters. There were attempts latter to resurrect the winter carnival in 1908-10.

At the same time, the ice palaces were built on Fletchers Field, which is located on the east side of Mount Royal Incline Railway (1885-1920). Fletcher’s Field, was a popular meeting place, especially for military parades. It was named after Colonel John Fletcher who supervised these marches.

Basically, the winter carnivals of 1908-10, were a duplication of the earlier ones of 1883-1887, where snowshoers from many clubs, were organized to make a massive assault on the ice castle. The members of each club, would wear their own distinctive coloured tuques and sash. With the different coloured lights from the torches and aided by the refraction from the blocks of ice, there was projected a thousand displays of miniature northern lights.


The main source of my information has been extracted from Joseph Leroux’s catalogue of 1892, “The Canadian Coin Cabinet (2nd edition)” and the 1897 supplement. Unfortunately, Leroux’s listing is incomplete, inaccurate and confusing. He lists only a few of the winter carnival medals and those that are listed, are not in proper sequence. Strangely, the Hamilton winter and summer carnivals are intermixed.

Leroux’s numbering system is not logical. He mixes different types and he assigns two medals with the same number 1146 obverse is incorrect. It is similar but not the same as the obverse of numbers 1147-1149. His supplemental listing of 1897 is also confusing, because it lacks both the picture and the complete inscription.

Despite all these problems, I thought it beat, that I should use the existing numbers of Leroux with added explanations and references. To clarify and show the many variaties of the winter carnival medals, I have used diagrams whenever possible.

My second source of information is taken from the “Tokens of Québec” by Fred Bowman. His listing is more complete and accurate, but there are a number of mistakes. Although I have examined a large number of the winter carnival medals, there are many that I have never seen, in other books, journals, catalogues or price lists. Needles to say, my listing is incomplete but a beginning to the listing of all winter carnival medals.

Descriptive Code:


A – Aluminum L – Lead

B – Brass S – Silver

BZ – Bronze

C – Copper

P – Pewter

WM –White Metal


) – Oval

R –Round

UR – Uneven Round


mm – Milimetre (the number refers to millimetres for the diameter)


Obv. – Obverse

Rev. – Reverse

S.L. – Suspension Loop

S. C. – Suspension Cleat

T.H. – Top Hole

? - Information incomplete or unknown

SERIES I: The 1883-1887 Winter Carnivals

General Description of Lymburner, Type I

Leroux 1145 obv. Ice Palace, Montreal Canada. / Erected January 1883/ 120/Feet High (Ice palace, no flags)

Leroux 1145 rev. The/ Winter Carnival / Held at Montreal, Canada./ January 1883. / Lymburner

Leroux 1150-1 obv. Ice Palace, Montreal, Canada. / Erected February 1884 M.E. Lymburner Mont

(ice palace, 4 flags)

Leroux 1150 rev. The Winter Carnival Held At Montreal. / February

1152 obv. 1884. (2 people on a toboggan)

Unlisted A (Same as above but dated 1885)

Leroux 1154 obv. Ice Condora Montreal. / Carnival / *1885*

(ice palace, 2 flags)

Leroux 1151-2 rev. Souvenir (snowshoer)

1154 rev.

Unlisted B Souvenir Of The Winter Carnival, 1885. / Ice Palace? M. E. Lymburner

(ice palace, 5 flags)

Leroux 1161e obv. Quebec Winter Carnival / Ice Palace / 1896

(Ice palace 6 flags)

Leroux 1635f obv. *Christian* Endeavor* Convention*/ July* 1893/

Montreal Canada / Drill Hall. (building)

Leroux 1635f rev. For*Christ*And*The*Church / Mizpah / C / Allan

(wreath of maple leaves & a beaver)

The above Medals are all from M.E. Lymburner, Montreal. The designs, engraving and workmanship are poor and inferior. There are many die breaks, flaws and imperfect strikes. Medals that are well struck and without any flaws, are difficult to find. There are also variations in the diameter but generally, it is about 27mm. The thickness varies also, even among a single specimen. Suspension loops occur often but not always. Generally, the pewter medals are most common, while the copper and brass are scarcer. Some varieties are scarce or rare, but it is difficult at this time to determine.

It is unknown at this time, why there are so many mules of the winter carnival medals. One can speculate that this was done for collectors of that day by Lymburner. Likewise, the dies could have been sold to collectors or speculators, who struck the many mules and varieties. The better the strikes may have been made by Lymburner, while the poorer ones, could have been produced at a latter date for collectors. Whatever the reason, this series is interesting to assemble. Completing this series, would be notable achievement and perhaps, a lifetime experience.

Varieties of Leroux 1145 obv.:

  1. Leroux 1145 rev P-R-27-S.L. B-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-thick

  2. Leroux 1150-1 obv P-R-27-S.L.

  3. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1884) P-R-27-S.L. 1152 obv. C-R-27-S.L.

  4. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1885) P-R-27-S.L. 1152 obv.

  5. Leroux 1151-2&4 rev. P-R-27-S.L.

  6. Leroux 1154 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  7. Leroux 1635 f obv. P-R-27

  8. Leroux 1635 f rev. P-R-27

  9. Unlisted B P-R-27-S.L.

Varieties of Leroux 1145 rev.:

  1. Leroux 1145 obv. P-R-27-S.L. B-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-thick

  2. Leroux 1150-1 obv. P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27

  3. Leroux1150-1 obv. (without Lymburner’s P-R-27 name on reverse side only) C-R-27-thick

  4. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1884) P-R-27-S.L. 1152 obv.

  5. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1885) P-R-27-S.L. 1152 obv. P-R-27-thin

  6. Leroux 1151-2&4 rev. P-R-27-S.L. P-R-27-S.L.-thin

  7. Leroux 1154 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  8. Leroux 1635f obv. P-R-27

  9. Unlisted B P-R-27

Varieties of Leroux 1150-1 obv.:

  1. Leroux 1145 rev/ P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27

  2. Leroux 1145 rev. (without Lymburger’s P-R-27 name on the obverse side only) C-R-thick

  3. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1884) P-R-27-S.L. 1152 obv.

  4. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1885) C-R-27 1152 obv.

  5. Leroux 1151-2&4 rev. P-R-27-S.L. P-R-27-S.L. –thick B-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-thick

  6. Leroux 1154 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  7. Leroux 1635f obv. P-R-27

  8. Leroux 1635f rev. P-R-27

  9. Unlisted B P-R-27-S.L. –thin

Varieties of Leroux 1150 rev. dated 1884:

1152 obv.

  1. Leroux 1145 obv. P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-S.L.

  2. Leroux 1145 rev. P-R-27-S.L.

  3. Leroux 1150-1 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  4. Leroux 1151-2&4 rev. P-R-27-S.L. B-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-S.L.

Varieties of Leroux 1150 rev. dated 1885 (Unlisted A):

1152 obv.

  1. Leroux 1145 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  2. Leroux 1145 rev. P-R-27-S.L. P-R-27-S.L.-thin

  3. Leroux 1150-1 obv. C-R-27

  4. Leroux 1151-2&4 rev. P-R-27 P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27 C-R-28-thick

  5. Leroux 1154 obv. P-R-27 P-R-27-S.L.

  6. Leroux 1161e obv. B-R-27

  7. Leroux 1635f obv. P-R-27

  8. Leroux 1635f rev. P-R-27

  9. Unlisted B P-R-27 P-R-27-S.L.-thin C-R-27

Varieties of Leroux 1151-2$4 rev.:

  1. Leroux 1145 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  2. Leroux 1145 rev. P-R-27-S.L. P-R-27-S.L.-thin

  3. Leroux 1150-1 obv. P-R-27-S.L. P-R-27-S.L.-thick B-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-thick

  4. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1884) P-R-27-S.L. 1152 rev. B-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-S.L.

  5. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1885) P-R-27 1152 obv. P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27 C-R-28-thick

  6. Leroux 1154 obv. P-R-27 P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-thick

  7. Leroux 1161e obv. P-R-27 C-R-26 to 27

  8. Leroux 1635f obv. P-R-27

  9. Untiltled B P-R-27 P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27 C-R-26-thick

Varieties of Leroux 1154 obv.:

  1. Leroux 1145 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  2. Leroux 1145 rev. P-R-27-S.L.

  3. Leroux 1150-1 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  4. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1885) P-R-27 1152 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  5. Leroux 1151- 2&4 rev. P-R-27 P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27-S.L.-thick

  6. Leroux 1635f obv. P-R-27 C-R-27

  7. Leroux 1635f rev. P-R-27

  8. Unlisted B P-R-27 P-R-27-S.L.

Varieties of Unlisted B dated 1885:

  1. Leroux 1145 obv. P-R-27-S.L.

  2. Leroux 1145 rev. P-R-27

  3. Leroux 1150-1 obv. P-R-27-S.L.-thin

  4. Leroux 1150 rev. (dated 1885) P-R-27 1152 obv. P-R-27-S.L.-thin C-R-27

  5. Leroux 1151- 2&4 rev. P-R-27 P-R-27-S.L. C-R-27 C-R-26-thick

  6. Leroux 1635f obv. P-R-27

  7. Leroux 1635f rev. P-R-27

General Description of Ellis, Type 1:

Leroux 1146 obv. Ice Palace / Ellis (ice palace, hanging icicles above, 4 square flags)

Leroux 1147-9 obv. (similar to Leroux 1146 but the flags are rectangular, palace & icicles differ slightly)

Leroux 1146 rev. 1 Souvenir/Montreal Carnival. / 1884 (beaver on branches, 3 maple leaves below, date between 2 stars, line above & below “Souvenir”)

Leroux 1146 rev. 2 (similar to rev. 1 but branches differ, no line above “Souvenir”)

Leroux 1147 rev. Souvenir/Montreal Carnival. /1844 (beaver on branch one maple leaf below, date on a rectangular plaque)

Leroux 1148 Rev. Souvenir/Montreal/Carnival/1884 (beaver on branch)

Leroux 1149 rev. Souvenir/Montreal/Winter Carnival/1884.

The obverse of Leroux 1146 differs from Leroux 1147-9. The picture in Leroux’s book is incorrect. All the medals listed are known in pewter only at this time. They are thick and vary from 3.5 to 4.0 mm. There are small top holes for suspension. They are 30 mm in diameter.

There is one exception to the general description. It is a Leroux 1146, which is not pierced and it is only 2.5 mm thick. This particular medal is very well struck and shows almost all of the detail. Generally, Ellis type 1, is much superior to Lymburner, type, 1 but not equal to some of the latter pieces.

At the completion of this article, another medal, Leroux 1149, has come to my attention. It is a copper, 3 mm thick and 30 mm in diameter. The obverse is not that of Leroux 1147-9, but that of Leroux 1146. From this evidence, it is quite possible that all Leroux 1146-9, might have both obverses and be made of copper also. The thickness would seem to vary as to the issue and metallic composition. The copper issue of Leroux 1149 does not have a top hole.

General Description of Ellis, Type 11:

Leroux 1157 obv. Canada’s Winter Carnival / Ice Castle / Montreal Feb. 1887 (ice palace with one flag)

Leroux 1159 obv. Souvenir De La / Carnival D’Hiver / Montreal (ice palace wi6th 8 flacgs)

Leroux 1157 rev. P.W. Ellis & Co. / Toronto (Tobaggon with 3 persons man at right, trees on left)

This type is far superior in design and striking in comparison to any other winter carnival medals. They are all 38 mm in diameter.

Leroux 1157 is known in pewter, copper, bronze and silver. The thickness varies from 4.0 to 4.5 mm.

Leroux 1159 is known in pewter only. The thickness varies from 3-4 mm. There is a variety where the location, “Montreal”, is obliterated. Leroux lists two medals for the same number. This on appears on page 216a.

General Description of Unidentified Types:

Leroux 1153 obv. Ice Palace, / Souvenir (ice palace with no flags) Leroux 1153 rev. Montreal Winter Carnival. / February / 1884

The workmanship on this piece is inferior. The letters and numbers are uneven. The V In “Souvenir” is really an inverted A. The medal is made of brass, 16.5 mm in diameter, 1 mm thick and there is a small top hole.

Leroux 1158 obv. Ice Palace (ice palace, 5 flags, 4 flag poles)

Leroux 1158 rev. Souvenir /Of The / 1887 / Ice / Carnival

This medal is well struck and engraved despite its small size. It is known in brass and copper, 15 mm in diameter and 1 mm thick.

Leroux 1159 obv. Carnaval D’Hiver Montreal (snake-like line of snowshoers with torches)

Leroux 1159 rev. Winter Carnival / Montreal (2 tobogganers going down hill)

This piece is listed also as number 1159, but is appears on page 216 of Leroux’s book. This medal is one of the worst ever made. It is crudely designed and poorly struck, with doubled letters and other defects. There also seems to be some unfilled spaces on both sides.

This medal is known in brass and white metal (pewter?). It is 32 mm in diameter, 2 mm thick with a suspension loop. Due to the poor quality, this medal could be an issue of Lymburner.

Leroux 1161 obv. Ice Palace (ice palace with 4 flags)

Leroux 1161 rev. Souvenir, Montreal Carnival 1884 (snowshoer)

This is another example of a crudely designed and struck piece. The obverse is similar to the reverse of Leroux 1151-2&4. The ice palace portrays an oversize flag that shows the Union Jack on the upper left hand portion. Some of the letters are doubled and there are die breaks. The spacing between the letters on the obverse is uneven.

The medal is known in pewter and copper. It is 24 mm in diameter, 2.5 mm thick and there is a small top hole. The piece that I have examined, is in poor condition. It appears that there is a name above “Ice Palace”, which may be “Ellis”, as this is listed in short narrative of the P.W|. Ellis Company.

SERIES II: the 1908-1910 Winter Carnivals

  1. Ice Palace / Montreal Carnival 1908 BZ-O-39X25

  2. Ice Palace / Montreal Carnival 1909 BZ-O-36X26 (4 flags, 6 flagpoles)

  3. Ice Palace / Montreal Carnival 1910 BZ-O-37X26 (7 flags, 6 flagpoles)

The first three pieces listed are elongated Canadian cents. They are one of the first Canadian elongated cents ever to be made and are rare. Because of the nature, the size and shape will vary. Their design is crude but effective. All picture a different ice palace. I have not as yet examined the 1908 elongated cent. The manufacturer is unknown.

  1. Winter Carnival / February 10-20 / 1909 / Montreal B-R-35.5-S.L. Schwaab, Milwaukee

  2. Winter Carnival / February 10-20 / 1909 / Montreal B-R-28.5-S.L. Schawaab, Milwaukee

  3. Winter Carnival / January 24 February / 1910 / Montreal B-R-19 Schwaab, Milwaukee

The next three Pieces are made by Schwaab Seal & Stamp Company of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I have examined numbers 4 and 5 only. It appears from a written inscription, that number 6 is a similar issue, as numbers 4 and 5.

Number 4 pictures and intricate and very large ice palace, having 8 turrets and flags. The date “1909” is level. Number 5 is similar but the letters differ and the date “1909” is curved. The reverse of both pieces, show a pre-1921 Canadian Shield with a crown above, but they differ slightly. Both medals are attached to a pin, shaped with a beaver on a log, which is inscribed “Sovenir”. I presume that number 6 would be similar to numbers 4 and 5.

  1. Ice Palace Montreal 1909 (ice palace) BZ-UR-34-S.C. (blank reverse)

  2. Ice Palace / Montreal (ice palace) WM-R-28-S.L. Souvenir / Winter / Carnival / Feb. 09 (maple branches at side)

The above two medals appear in Bowman’s catalogue. I have as yet to examine these pieces. The eight winter carnival medals listed above, are the only known pieces for the 1908-1910 winter carnival. From that date forward, there is no further information on any winter carnivals, except for some small local carnivals, such as the annual affaire, that is sponsored by McGill University. There does seem to be a renewal of this celebration on and around the island of Montrél, but as yet, no additional winter carnival medals have been struck.

Appendix 1: Other Canadian Winter Carnival Medals

Perhaps the most famous winter carnival today, is the one celebrated at Québec City. The first commemoratives were struck in 1894 and they appear intermittently until 1978, when they were struck consecutively as trade dollars. There are, no doubt, many more commemorative souvenirs from Québec City, that are as yet unlisted.

The other winter carnival medals are from locations, not known for their celebrations. These appear to be for one time celebrations, but they may be continuous or sporadic. With the popularity of souvenir trade dollars, we can expect more themes dedicated to a winter carnival. The winter carnival medals listed below, are just a preliminary listing of known issues. Leroux 1161b is known but is unavailable for listing.

Bracebridge, Ontario

Muskoka Winter Carnival / Skokie / Jan 23-Feb 1st 1976 N-R-35

(dancing seal)

Bracebridge Ontario Canada / Heart of The Muskoka

Lakes (bridge, fish, birds, man near log cabin)

Chibougamau, Québec

Souvenir / Winter / Carnaval / D’Hiver / 1965 BZ-R-25

Chibougamau/ Quebec (mine buildings)

(Struck by Canadian Artistic Dies)

Hamilton, Ontario

Leroux 1155 obv. – Hamilton / Carnival / Feb 1887 / P.W.E. & Co. WM-R-38

1156 (view of curlers & tobogganers) C-R-38

Leroux 1155 rev. - (view of Hamilton)

Leroux 1156 rev. - (similar view of Hamilton)

These medals are very detailed and beautiful, when they are uncirculated and well struck. Any wear or abrasion, will distort their beauty. The reverse of Leroux 1156 was later muled with the obverse of Leroux 1160, which commemorates a summer carnival in 1889.

Ottawa, Ontario

Ottawa Winter Carnival / 1895 (ice palace) A-R-38

Parliament Building / Ottawa (building) A-R-38 - thick

(Listed as Leroux 1161c) C-R-38 - thick


National Winter Crnival / 1922 (ice palace) A-R-38 (rev. same as above)

(Struck by Pritchard & Andrew)

The following winter carnival medals listed for Ottawa were made by Thomas Church. He began to experiment by cutting dies and later striking tokens. His early dies were very crude a shown by these winter carnival medals. There are die breaks and the thickness varies considerably. The letters, numbers and design appear grotesque. In 1900, the great Hull and Ottawa fire destroyed his premises. Thomas Church never resumed his hobby and therefore these meals are very rare. The following listing is extracted from Fed Bowman’s, “The Tokens of Thomas Church”.

14-50 Carnival / Ottawa -1895 (ice palace, 3 flags) B-R-26

(beaver on branch over water) C-R-26

(Overstrikes exist) C-R-26-thick

14-57 Ottawa / 1895 / Carnival (ice palace, 3 flags) WM-R-26

(rev. same as above)

15-49 Carnival 1895 (oce [a;ace. 4 flags B-R-27

Souvenir / Ottawa (beaver on branch, water) C-R-27


16-49 (obv. Same as above) C-R-27

Ottawa (beaver on branch over water)

17-49 (obv. Same as above) C-R-27

(beaver on branch)

18-49 (obv. Same as above) B-R-27

Souvenir / Ottawa (beaver on branch) C-R-27


49-52 (obv. same as above) B-R-27

(blank rev. ? ) C-R-27

50-58 (obv. same as 14-50) C-R-26

(beaver on branch over water)

In order to clarify this listing, I have shown the obverses, as that which pertains to the winter carnival. All the reverses, except 49-52, portray a beaver which may face left or right. The sizes indicated may vary by 1-2 mm for the same striking. Due to the rarity of these pieces, I have only examined a few. Some of this information is taken directly from photocopies and therefor is subject to mistakes. There may be other unlisted medals and varieties.

From a dealer’s price list, there appears to be another unlisted winter carnival medal. The inscription may be incomplete or incorrect.

Semi-Centennial & Carnival, Ottawa, 1907 B-R-21

(Parliament Building)

It appears to be another issue of Pritchard and Andrews, as the two previous medals listed above. It is quite possible, that there are other years in which this similar medal has been struck.

Québec City, Québec

Quebec Winter Carnival / 1894 (shield within wheat stems) S-UR-40

G. Seifelt / Sterling

Quebec Carnival / 1896 (ice palace, 3 large flags) B-R-27

Pritchard & Andrews, Ottawa B-R-27-WM plated

(similar to above but no towers at sides) A-R-25


WM-R-25 Leroux 1161g may be either piece for P & A, Ottawa.)

Carnaval de Québec / 1896 (ice palace similar to above) A-R-38

Amateurs De Raquette De L’Union Commerciale / Surcere

Tento / Ed. L. Capt. (union shield)

(This is Leroux 1161h. It is struck by P & A, Ottawa.

It may come with a silver plated brass clasp, on which appears, “RD 95/Souvenir”.)

Quebec Winter Carnival / Ice Palace / 1896 (ice palace, 6 flags)

(This is listed as Leroux 1161e and it is muled with the following.)

  1. Leroux 1151-2&4 rev. P-R-27 C-R-26 to 27

  2. Leroux 1150 rev. dated 1885 B-R-27 1152 obv.

(There is also a listing for Leroux 1161f which is similar but smaller. I have not examined this piece as yet.)

Carnaval Mardi – Gras Carnival Quebec / Nature Fortis A-R-43

Industrial Crisit / Du 16 Au 21 Fevrier / From The 16th To 21st Feb / 1912 (view of cliff, person sitting with shield, beehive, cornucopia, etc.)

The Maple Leaf For Ever-Je Me Souviens / Canada (crown on large maple leaf)

Carnaval de Québec (snowman’s face in red & white) C-R-32-S.L.

C. Lamond WM plated Carnavalons / A / L’Unisson / 10-22 Fevrier 1966/1966 C-R-38

Quebec / Porte St-Louis / Can. Art. Dies

(St. Louis gate and building)

Carnaval De Québec / Valeur De $1 / Non Valide Apres Le 17 Fevrier 1978 WM-R-34-reeded edge

Effigie Du Bonhomme Carnaval 1955 (snowman) La Ville De / Quebec / 1978 / Dollar Du Carnaval (sailing ship) (These medals were struck in large quantities by the Royal Canadian Mint.)

(same as above but 1956 Bonhomme Carnaval is portrayed)

(same as above but 1957 Bonhomme Carnaval is portrayed)

Carnaval De Québec / Valeur De $1 / Non Valide Apres Le 16 Fevrier 1979 WM-R-34 reeded edge

Effigie Du Bonhomme Carnaval 1958 (snowman) La Ville De Québec 1979

Dollar Du Carnabal (sailing ship)

(same as above but 1959 Bonhomme Carnaval is portrayed)

(same as above but 1960 Bonhomme Carnaval is portrayed)

Carnaval Du Québec/Valeur De $1 Non Valide Apres Le 15 Fevrier WM-R-34 reeded edge

1980/ Effigie Du Bonhomme Carnaval 1961 (snowman)

La Ville De / Québec / 1980 / Dollar Du Carnaval (sailing ship)

Carnaval De Québec / Valeur De $1 / Non Valide Apres Le 13 Fevrier WM-R-34 reeded edge

1981 / Effigie Du Bonhomme Carnaval 1964 (snowman)

La Ville De Québec / 1981 / Dollar Du Carnaval (sailing ship)

(same as above but 1965 Bonhomme Carnaval is portrayed)

(same as above but 1966 Bonhomme Carnaval is portrayed)

The 1982 winter carnival medals will portray 4 different views of Bonhomme. The reverse will differ from the previous issues by showing statues of Joan of Arc, Francois X. Garneau, Samuel de Champlain and Alexandre Taschereau. The Royal Canadian Mint will strike 35,000 of each type on 34 mm diameter copper nickel planchets. The white metal designation for the previous issues represent this alloy. It is to be expected that these souvenir dollars will be struck in future years.)

Labrador City, Newfoundland

At the time of this article, the 1974 Labrador City trade dollar, was not available. It is reported that a 1982 winter carnival trade dollar is been considered.

Appendix II: Non Canadian Winter Carnival Medals

Winter carnivals were not restricted to Canada, alone. We know that there were winter carnivals at Burlington, Vermont, St. Paul, Minnesota, and Leadville, Colorado. There are probably many more winter carnival medals from the United States. Those that are listed, represent a few of the many that were issued.

Burlington, Vermont

A souvenir of The Grand Winter Carnival Feb. 1887/G.R. P-R-35.5

Fownes N.Y. (winter scene with tobogganers & ice boat)

City of Burlington, Vt./Organized Feb. 21.1865 (building)

The winter scene is poorly portrayed and crudely engraved. The reverse is superior. Burlington is located just 75 miles south of Montréal. Perhaps they were influenced by the winter carnival held in Montréal.

St. Paul, Minnesota

St. Paul / North W. St. Works (ice palace with 7 flags) P-R-30.5

The Ice Palace & Winter Carnival / Souvenir. (two snowshoes & toboggans cris-crossed)

Winter Carnival / N.W. Stamp Works / St. Paul. (ice palace with one flag) WM-R-30.5

Saint Paul Winter Carnival / & Ice Palace. / Souvenir/ 1886

(ice palace with no flags) G-R-15

St. Paul Ice Carnival / Feb. 1886

All three medals have small top holes and they show different views of the ice palace. The last medal resembles Leroux 1153 in its design.

Leadville, Colorado

Souvenir / Crystal Carnival / Leadville, Colo. / 1896 (reverse not seen)

This inscription is taken from a picture. It shows an odd shaped shield fastened to a clasp. According to the accompanying article, the ice palace consumed 5,000 tons of ice, while 10,000 yards of canvas was required to cover the south wall. The palace was constructed in a Norman style and it was one twelfth of a mile long. It is portrayed as having six flags. The ice palace was started on November 1, 1895 and it lasted until July 1, 1896. It must have been one of the largest ice palaces over constructed.


  1. Bowman, Fred – Tokens of Québec, 1972

  2. Bowman, Fred – The Tokens of Thomas Church, in the Canadian Numismatic Journal, Volume 4, Number 10, Pages 353-360.

  3. Jenkins, Kathleen – Montréal, Island City of the St. Lawrence, 1966.

  4. Leroux, Dr. Joseph – The Canadian Coin Cabinet, 2nd Edition, 1892.

  5. Leroux, Dr. Joseph - Supplement to the 2nd Edition (1897 ?).

  6. Schenkman, David E. – A Survey of American Trade Tokens, 1975.

  7. Various articles from The Montréal Star and Scene magazine.


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