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Trois-Pistoles, Quebec (Canada)

Ville de Trois-Pistoles

Last modified: 2017-01-24 by rob raeside
Keywords: quebec | trois-pistoles |
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[Cap-Saint-Ignace] image by Marc Pasquin, 5 December 2016
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Ville de Trois-Pistoles

The municipality of Trois-Pistoles (3,739 inhabitants in 2002; 7.74 sq. km) is located on river Saint-Laurent, in the region known as the Basque district (also, administratively, MRC Les Basques). Basque whalers settled the area in the XVIth-XVIIth centuries; they used to cut up whales on a small island located 5 km off Trois-Pistoles, subsequently named Îles aux Basques. Today an ornithological reserve, the island has kept remains of Basque ovens. The Basque heritage is recalled by the "Basque Adventure Park", including the only pelota front wall in Canada.

In 1621, a Basque ship moored off Trois-Pistoles and sailor landed to resupply in freshwater. An officer lost his tumbler in the river and said: "Three pistols lost." The story is the origin of the name of the river, subsequently given to the village founded in 1693 and incorporated as a municipality on 9 March 1916. "Pistole" was the generic name given to golden coins whose value carried form country to country. The Spanish pistoles (10 pounds) were massively introduced in France after the marriage of Louis XIV with the Spanish Infant Maria-Theresa in 1659.

Source: Presentation of Trois-Pistoles (in French)
Ivan Sache, 30 September 2008


InfoDimanche, 12 September 2008, shows a photograph of the Mayors of Rimouski and Trois-Pistoles holding the flag of Trois-Pistoles. the flag was hoisted over the town hall of Rimouski following the victory of Trois-Pistoles over Rimouski in base-ball.

The flag of Trois-Pistoles is white with the municipal coat of arms in the middle, surmounting "Ville de Trois-Pistoles" written in Gothic- like black letters.

Images: photograph (clickable for a larger image)

direct link to the larger image
Ivan Sache, 30 September 2008

Image here is based on the picture found by Ivan Sache. The visual identity page of the municipality's website confirms that the mural crown is indeed red and not the usual gold seen on other municipalities' arms in Quebec:
Marc Pasquin, 5 December 2016


The arms of Trois-Pistoles are:

D’azur à une nef d’argent, habillée du deuxième, voguante sur une mer de même, ombrée du premier, sur le tout, une bande de gueules, chargée de trois besants d’or.

Azure a nave argent with sails of the second, sailing on a sea of the same traced of the first, overall a bend gules three bezants or.

The nave recalls the historic times, when the boats moored at Trois- Pistoles.

The wavy fess recalls the maritime situation of Trois-Pistoles. The three bezants represent the three pistols that gave their name to the town.

The cross fleurdelisée on the mural crown recalls the French Canadian ancestors and the current population of Trois-Pistoles, which has been Catholic since the early beginnings. The first parish in the village was a French Canadian Catholic parish.

The Latin motto "Crescam", (I will grow), represents the constant aspiration to an ideal of honour. The motto seems to be written in black letters on the golden scroll placed below the shield.

The maple leaves flanking the shield recall that Trois-Pistoles is located in Canada.

Source: Municipal website (in French)
Ivan Sache, 30 September 2008