Date of Issue
December 5, 1980
Perforation or Dimension
Designed by Jean Morin.
Edmond Dyonnet, "Emmanuel-Persillier Lachapelle"
Emmanuel-Persillier Lachapelle was born at Sault-aux-Récollets on December 23, 1845. He was a descendant of one of Montreal's first colonists. Lachapelle excelled in science and studied medicine at the Montreal School of Medicine and Surgery, known as Victoria School. English Protestants had founded it in 1843, but over the years it had become French and Roman Catholic. It was affiliated with a Methodist institution, Victoria University of Cobourg, Ontario, for degree-granting purposes. An excellent physician, Dr. Lachapelle had a large and distinguished clientele, which included several religious orders. He was also one of the first French-Canadian medical examiners for an insurance company. His administrative talents were demonstrated after the Quebec College of Physicians and Surgeons named him its treasurer in 1878, when its treasury was empty. By the time he left, it had a surplus of $4,672.14. Lachapelle also took the initiative in reforming Quebec's laws governing medical practice. He was elected president of the Saint-Jean-Baptiste Society in 1887. Lachapelle's greatest accomplishment was the founding of Notre-Dame Hospital in Montreal in 1880. This occurred against the background of rivalry between ultramontanism and liberalism, and between the cities of Montreal and Quebec. Bishop Bourget of Montreal wanted to make Victoria School part of a Roman Catholic University he had hoped to set up in Montreal. However, because the Pope had forbidden affiliations between Roman Catholic professional schools and universities of other faiths, Dr. Lachapelle concluded that French Roman Catholic medical training in Montreal would have to be connected with Laval University at Quebec City. Thanks to Lachapelle's energy and initiative, Laval opened a medical school in Montreal in September 1879. Unfortunately, a prominent French hospital in Montreal closed its doors to the new school's students. In order that the students could have teaching facilities and that the residents of Montreal's rapidly growing east end could be served, Lachapelle and two others founded Notre-Dame Hospital. For years Lachapelle was administrator of the hospital, which he provided with the most modern facilities. Today it is the largest francophone medical centre in North America. Dr. Lachapelle also contributed greatly to public health in Quebec. He helped to reduce the incidence of diphtheria, typhoid fever, and tuberculosis. He strongly promoted vaccination against smallpox, a dangerous practice, since anti-vaccination riots regularly broke out. During the 1885 epidemic, for example, a mob wrecked the Montreal public health offices, beat the chief of police, and burned the house of a civic medical officer. Dr. Lachapelle died in Rochester, Minnesota, in 1918. The portrait of Dr. Emmanuel-Persillier Lachapelle on this commemorative stamp was taken from a painting that hangs in the Salon des Gouverneurs of the Notre-Dame Hospital. Printed in a rich duotone, the stamp was designed by Jean Morin Designers Limited, Montreal.
Canada. Post Office Department. [Postage Stamp Press Release], 1980.
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