Lachine, apparently from French la Chine (China), is often said to have been named in 1667, in mockery of its then owner Robert Cavelier de La Salle, who explored the interior of North America, trying to find a passage to Asia. When he returned without success, he and his men were derisively named les Chinois (Chinese). The name was adopted when the parish of Saints-Anges-de-la-Chine was created in 1678, with the form Lachine appearing with the opening of a post office in 1829.
On August 4, 1689, more than 1500 Mohawk warriors raided the small village and burned it to the ground in retaliation for the ravaging of the Seneca lands by governor Denonville and his men. The Lachine massacre left 80 dead. Lachine was incorporated as a city in 1872. In 1999, it merged with the town of Saint-Pierre before being merged into Montreal in 2002. Its logo during its municipality days is still in use as of today.
The borough is located in the southwest portion of the island of Montreal, at the inlet of the Lachine Canal, between the borough of LaSalle, and the city of Dorval. It was a separate city until municipal mergers on January 1, 2002 and did not demerge on January 1, 2006 .
The borough is bordered to the northwest by the city of Dorval to the northeast by Saint-Laurent, to the east by Côte Saint-Luc, Montreal West and a narrow salient of Le Sud-Ouest, and to the south by LaSalle. Its western limit is the shore of Lac Saint-Louis and the Saint Lawrence River.
It has an area of 17.83 km² and a population of 41,391.
As of the November 3, 2013 Montreal municipal election, the current borough council consists of the following councillors:
The entire borough is located within the federal riding of Dorval-Lachine-LaSalle, and within the provincial electoral district of Marquette.
Autoroute 20 passes through Lachine, which is also served by the Lachine commuter train station.
Most noticeable of Lachine's features is the Lachine Canal and its recreational facilities, including the Lachine Canal National Historic Site. Around the canal's inlet, in the southern part of the borough, are located The Fur Trade at Lachine National Historic Site, René Lévesque Park (on a long peninsula extending into Lac Saint-Louis), and the Musée de Lachine, which has collections of modern outdoor sculpture both on its own grounds, in René Lévesque Park, and in other sites throughout the borough. Other historic buildings are also located near the canal's inlet.
A memorial to Air India Flight 182 is located in Monk Island, in Lachine. It was inaugurated in 2010.
The Commission scolaire Marguerite-Bourgeoys operates Francophone public schools.
Adult schools include:Centre d'éducation des adultes de LaSalle, Édifice Boileau
Professional development centres include:Centre de formation professionnelle de Lachine (CFP), Édifice Dalbé-Viau and Édifice de la Rive
Secondary schools include:École secondaire Dalbé-Viau
College Sainte-Anne de Lachine
Primary schools include:École Primaire Catherine-Soumillard
École Primaire Victor Therrien
École Primaire des Berges-de-Lachine
École Primaire Jardin-des-Saints-Anges
École Primaire Martin-Bélanger
École Primaire Paul-Jarry
École Primaire Philippe-Morin
École Primaire Très-Saint-Sacrement
The Lester B. Pearson School Board (LBPSB) operates Anglophone public schools.Lakeside Academy (a merger of Lachine High School and Bishop Whelan High School)
Maple Grove Elementary School in Lachine, a merger of the Meadowbrook School in Lachine and the Bishop-Whelan School in Dorval, opened in August 2010
The Pearson Electrotechnology Centre (PEC; Centre d'électrotechnologie Pearson), a public vocational school of the LBPSB, is in Lachine.
The Montreal Public Libraries Network operates the Saint-Pierre Branch and the Saul-Bellow Branch in Lachine.Shmuel Schecter (1915–2000), rabbi and Torah educator