History, Logo, Flag and Coat of Arms

Source of the name Côte Saint-Luc

The name “Côte Saint-Luc” is, without a doubt, almost as old as the one of “Ville Marie” and dates to the 1660s or so.

The names “Côte Saint-Luc” and “Coteau Saint-Pierre” first appeared about that time in documents describing the land held by the “Seigneurs” (landowners) of the Island of Montreal. (Today Coteau Saint-Pierre is called Nôtre Dame de Grâce or NDG.)

Coteau Saint-Pierre bordered Côte Saint-Luc to the northwest and Côte des Neiges to the northeast.

It is clear that “Côte” — which is French for “slope” — referred to the slope that led from the northwest to Coteau Saint-Pierre (NDG). But historians are less certain about the origin of “Saint-Luc”.

The custom in the day was to use the land owner’s name when naming towns or roads and to add “Saint” to the place name. So, if the name of the owner was Luc, the name of the land might be named Saint-Luc.

The colonization of the Island of Montreal was progressively made, starting from the St. Lawrence River. It only reached “Coteau Saint-Pierre” at the end of the 1600s. The first grant of land on this “Coteau” was made in 1687 to Pierre Hurtubise. Up to 1700, only the forest and the prairie could be seen on “Côte Saint-Luc” and it was good hunting grounds. In fact, tradition has it that game was very plentiful there.

But the inhabitants of Montreal were not long in noticing how fertile the soil was on “Côte Saint-Luc” and the clearing and breaking up of land started there at the beginning of the 1700s. The land remained agricultural for 200 years. In 1900, farming was still the main activity in Côte Saint-Luc.

Interesting fact. Until 1964, the City Hall was housed in the former home of Pierre Lemieux, who was mayor from 1905 to 1909 and from 1912 to 1938. Today, Côte Saint-Luc City Hall is located at 5801 Cavendish Boulevard.

Symbolism of the Côte Saint-Luc logo

The Côte Saint-Luc logo represents nature including gardens, parks and green spaces. The overall logo illustrates a green leaf. But a bird is also visible. The S curve illustrates elevation, reflecting the city’s geography.

Flag of the City of Côte Saint-Luc

Symbolism of the Coat of Arms

A community’s coat of arms should be a “signature through pictures.” A coat of arms must include peculiar designs featuring the city’s individuality.

The City of Côte Saint-Luc was named after Saint Luke, whom Saint John saw in the form of a winged bull during his apocalyptic vision. Since then, a winged bull has always remained the symbolic beast of Saint Luke. On the escutcheon, or shield, the winged bull expresses the very name of the city.

The lower part of the shield illustrates the location of Côte Saint-Luc as a railroad junction. The base gyronny argent and sable — the heraldic tinctures for white and black, well-known as colours of railroad signals — whose disposition suggests the tracks of a marshalling yard, diverging in every direction.

The crest, formed of ears of wheat, recalls that Côte Saint-Luc owes its origin and growth to agricultural activities and was, until the end of the Second World War, almost exclusively a farming community.

The two banners, wavering over both sides of the shield, are symbolic of the double patriotism of Côte Saint-Luc, which is, with every right, proud of being both a modern Canadian city and an old Quebec community.

The motto “Civibus meis” offers a double and suggestive meaning, as it can be translated either as “For my Citizens” or as “By my Citizens.” Through its motto, the City of Côte Saint-Luc pays tribute to all of its citizens, whose civic mind made possible its splendid development, and also gives expression to its ideal, which is to work, in every way, for the welfare of all the citizens in the community.