| || |
Baptiste - the Indian Pilot
Private collection of Steven Evans
Among the most exciting tourist attractions in Montreal during the 19th century was the stomach churning tour by steamboat of the turbulent Lachine Rapids in the St. Lawrence River. It took a special crew and pilot to navigate through all the pitch and roll and then deliver the passengers back to safety. Pictured above is Jean Baptiste Rice, a Mohawk from Kahnawake, who was legendary for his superior navigational skills.
Rice was featured in a few photographs produced by the Notman studio including an image almost identical to the one offered here. This image, however, is a scarce portrait taken by James Inglis, one of Notman's competitors in Montreal.