In the 1760s, strange reports began to appear in a French-Canadian newspaper. There was, according to the Gazette de Québec, a vicious beast preying on the population of the colony: a werewolf was on the loose in New France.
It’s been called “The Horse of Steel” and “The Little Iron Horse.” It’s a distinctly Canadian breed, with roots stretching back more than 300 years to the early French-Canadian pioneers. It had to be a rugged breed to survive the rigours of the Canadian climate — but as strong as it is, the Canadian Horse has barely survived: more than once, the National Horse of Canada has nearly gone extinct.
It's Christmas Eve, 1781. And in the town of Sorel, Québec, the Riedesels are throwing a party. The family has a lot to celebrate: this is the first Christmas in four years they've been able to enjoy the holiday in freedom. They've been through a harrowing ordeal of horror and bloodshed. But now, it's finally over.
The fellow in the middle of this drawing — the one with the cross and his hand on his heart — is Jacques Cartier. He was a French explorer one of the very first Europeans to ever come to Canada. At the end of his first trip here, he erected a cross on the Gaspé Peninsula, as a way of claiming the land for France. They say that's how he met Donnacona.