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Women may be useful in some departments of medicine but in difficult work, they would not have the nerve. And can you think of a patient in a critical case, waiting for half an hour while the medical lady fixes her bonnet or adjusts her bustle?

This was the type of comment that could be heard when Maude Abbott first entered the Faculty of Medicine at Bishop’s College, Montreal in 1890. As the only woman in her class, she faced the sexist barriers and attitudes common at the time. Determined to succeed, she graduated with honours in 1894. A rigorous scientist, she is internationally renowned for her medical research into congenital heart disease.

Maude Abbott was born in St. Andrews in Argenteuil County, and was a second cousin of Sir John Joseph Caldwell Abbott (1821-1893), Canada’s third prime minister. She was highly involved in her community, co-founding the Argenteuil County Historical Society in 1934 and its Museum (now the Argenteuil Regional Museum) in 1938.

This exhibit takes a walk in the footsteps of Maude Abbott. It includes three treasures that are sure to inspire: short videos on this exceptional woman’s unique journey, featuring the students of L’envol du colibri alternative elementary school in Lachute.