Queens and Duchesses

From 1955 to 1996

Each year, at the Québec Winter Carnival, 7 duchesses were chosen to represent the 7 sectors of the Quebec region. Women who wanted to become a Carnival duchess had to write a letter explaining why. The process took several months and duchesses were appointed just before the holidays.

Becoming a duchess involved several steps. The candidates had to take classes and attend fitting sessions. Throughout their mandate, they were also asked to participate in conferences, television and radio interviews, and more.

Despite the many tasks assigned to them, we must not forget that the duchesses were first and foremost the Carnival’s Ambassadors. They participated in various activities and events during the festivities. They were an integral part of the great winter celebration!

At the beginning of the Carnival, one of them had the chance to become Queen. The Queen was elected randomly based on the number of candles sold in different areas of the city. Both the duchesses and the population eagerly awaited the Queen’s coronation.

Did you know…

Over the last 42 years, more than 12,000 women have applied to become a duchess and possibly the Queen of the Carnival?

Queens, Duchesses and Duchies

Duchies Years Total
Cartier 1964, 1965, 1970, 1971, 1976, 1977, 1990 7
Champlain 1957, 1961, 1984, 1989 4
Frontenac 1966, 1967, 1974, 1980, 1986, 1995, 1996 7
Laval 1963, 1979 2
Lévis 1969, 1972, 1975, 1982, 1991, 1993 6
Montcalm 1962, 1968, 1981, 1983, 1985 5
Montmorency 1955, 1956, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1973, 1978, 1987, 1988, 1992, 1994 11

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