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In 1849, three valorous pioneers, Narcisse Ménard, Olivier and Jean-Baptiste Dufresne, set themselves up on the shores of Lac à la Truite, a place known to be frequented by the Weskarinis. Then, little by little, other « country openers » come to join them to eventually form a parish and finally a village. With the arrival of the first train, the population grows rapidly, going from 1 700 to 4 500, between 1892 and 1921. Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts then becomes Montreal’s rich business people’s favourite destination. During the 1927-1928 winter season, more than 11 000 skiers arrive by train, also the means by which forestry products are transported to Montreal.
As early as 1898, Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts is known as the best lit community in Québec. Around 1910, the village becomes self-sufficient as far as its electricity needs are concerned, and begins to provide electricity to surrounding villages, this service continues until 1965 when the nationalisation of electricity comes into effect. Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts’ calling as a town and service center is established and has continued to thrive up until today.
The particular type of architecture of some of the larger homes of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts, equipped with large covered balconies and solariums, is a reminder of days when the fresher air and the sun warmed days attracted sickly or convalescing people afflicted by tuberculoses to the outdoors. D. Lorne McGibbon authorized the construction of the Laurentian Sanatorium whose architectural traits were similar to those of the sanatorium of Saranac Lake. The Jewish community had the Mount Sanaï Sanatorium built and it offered free services to people of all religious beliefs until 1920.
Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts also maintains strong Anglophone roots. The still active churches and the school which remain on its territory are proof of that. Summer like winter, each time nature calls vacationers out to the heart of the beautiful Laurentians, the number of Anglophones increases.
The merge with the municipalities of Sainte-Agathe-Sud and, more recently, with Sainte-Agathe-Nord, enrich the history of the new town of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts.
Once known as a health oasis and sought after vacation area, Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts remains unique, with the magnificent lac des Sables and its enchanting décor at the centre of its town.
At the heart of the Laurentians and in close proximity to Montreal, Mont Tremblant and Saint-Sauveur, Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts is also a center filled with activities. The quality of the services offered, notably for health and for education, the revitalisation of the downtown area and Place Lagny and the will to put into value its patrimonial legacy represent the corner stones for its vision for future development.