Canada is the only country that marks the birthday of Queen Victoria with an official holiday, a practice that even predates the creation of Canada, going back to the 1840s.
However, to state the matter more accurately, not all of Canada marks the Queen's birthday in late May, as Quebec has gone its own way for nearly a century.
Starting in the 1920s, Victoria Day was marked in some quarters as the Fête de Dollard, thanks to the efforts of nationalist leaders such as Lionel Groulx, who viewed 17th-century figure Adam Dollard des Ormeaux as a role model to be emulated in the 20th century.
In order to paint Dollard heroically, it was necessary to ignore the fact that he had ambushed the Iroquois at Long Sault. By the late 20th century, this aspect of the Dollard story could no longer be swept aside due to the growing understanding of the role that settler colonialism played in dispossessing the Indigenous population of what became Canada The holiday was rebranded in Quebec as the Fête nationale des Patriotes starting in 2003.
The Patriotes told a very different story that harkened back to the early 19th century when there was a significant movement of Quebecers (or more accurately, Lower Canadians) — both French and English speaking — who were against arbitrary imperial rule and in favour of a more democratic government.
The best known Patriote was Louis-Joseph Papineau, who, with Edmund Bailey O'Callaghan, advanced this cause until they concluded that it could only succeed through the use of arms, leading to the failed rebellions of 1837-38.
Edmund Bailey O'Callaghan is the one with the beard. ...