Sunday, May 29, 2016

Sunday’s Obituary: David Venasse

David Venasse obituary

Great-uncle David was my grandmother Julie (Vanasse) Belair’s youngest brother. Some of the family spelled their last name Vanasse, others spelled it Venasse.

David, the eighth of nine children of Olivier and Elizabeth (Vanasse) Vanasse, was born on 3 May 1903 on Ile des Allumettes, Pontiac County, Quebec. He married Louise St-Martin in June 1929 and they adopted a son, Glen.

I don’t think I ever met David or Louise, but my Dad used to talk about his Uncle Dave to me.

A resident of Pembroke, Ontario, David passed away of cancer on 28 May 1979 in Queensway-Carleton Hospital in nearby Ottawa, Ontario. [1] His funeral took place three days later in Petawawa, just north of Pembroke, and he was interred in Chapeau on Ile des Allumettes. [2]

David’s death was a great blow to his wife Louise and to his surviving sisters Celia and Agnes, who were devoted to their brother.

Sources:

1. Agnes (Vanasse) Burchill (Ottawa, Ontario) to “Dear Joan”, letter, 1 June 1979; privately held by Yvonne (Belair) Demoskoff, British Columbia, 2016. Yvonne received assorted family memorabilia, including this letter, from her aunt Joan (Belair) Laneville when she visited her home in May 2014. Joan was Agnes’ niece.

2. “Venasse”, obituary, undated clipping, 1979, from unidentified newspaper; privately held by Yvonne (Belair) Demoskoff, British Columbia, 2016. Yvonne received assorted family memorabilia, including this obituary, from her aunt Joan (Belair) Laneville when she visited her home in May 2014. Joan, David’s niece, received it from his sister Agnes (Vanasse) Burchill in a letter to Joan dated 1 June 1979.

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun – Your Ancestor’s Occupations

It’s Saturday, and Randy over at Genea-Musings has issued his weekly challenge to his readers.

Tonight’s challenge is “Your Ancestor’s Occupations”. Randy explains that:

1) Geneablogger Diane Gould Hall posted WORKDAY WEDNESDAY – What kind of work did your ancestors do? on her Michigan Family Trails blog last year, and I thought the topic could be used as an SNGF post.
2) Please go back several generations (say parents or grandparents or great-grandparents) and list the occupations that they had in the records you've found for them. You could do this, say, by ancestor table number.
3) Tell us about it in your own blog post, in a comment on this blog post, or in a post on Facebook or Google+.

My ancestors had the following occupations:

My Parents

2. Maurice Belair (1927-1996):

• 1940s: bushworker

ca 1952-1979: welder
• 1954: pipefitter (his marriage registration)
• 1979-1996: trucker (road builder)

3. Jacqueline Desgroseilliers (living):

• 1948, 1950s, 1980s: waitress

ca 1967: meat clerk at A&P
ca 1970: Avon sales rep

My Grandparents

3. Fred Belair (1889-1991):

• 1910s: laborer
ca 1921-1922: railroad work (perhaps as fireman)
• 1926: bridge builder (his marriage registration)
• 1927: iron worker (his son’s birth registration)
ca 1931: construction worker
ca 1932: garage owner
ca 1933: grocery store operator
• 1935: farmer
• 1930s-1950s: bushworker
ca 1942: mine painter

4. Julie Vanasse (1896-1967):

• 1920s, 1950s: domestic in private homes
• 1940s: cook in lumber camps

5. Eugène Desgroseilliers (1900-1960):

• 1925: farmer (his marriage registration)
ca 1927-1940: chief of police
• 1940: guard at Nobel dynamite factory
• 1940s-1950s: carpenter

6. Juliette Beauvais (1901-1948):

• housework (life)

My Great-Grandparents

8. Pierre Belair (1851-1941):

• farmer (life)
• 1884: landowner (his godchild’s baptism record)

9. Angélina Meunier (1855-1896):

• housework (life)

10. Olivier Vanasse (1863-1944):

• farmer (life) (his obituary)

11. Elisabeth Vanasse (1862-1947):

• housework (life)

12. Albert Desgroseilliers (1879-1957):

• farmer (life)

13. Clémentine Léveillé (1878-1969):

• housework (life)

14. Joseph Beauvais (1877-1937):

• 1901: lumberjack (1901 census)
• 1911: farmer and lumberjack (1911 census)
• 1937: farmer (his death registration)

15. Olivine Hotte (1877-1926):

• housework (life)

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Friday’s Faces from the Past: Madeleine and Jacqueline Desgroseilliers

Madeleine and Jacqueline Desgroseilliers

This lovely, if somewhat damaged, photo is of my mother Jacqueline (left) and her elder sister Madeleine (sitting, centre).

Both girls were tall for their age. Mom appears to be 7-8 years old, while Madeleine is about 11-12 years old. If so, then the picture is from 1940-1941.

The location is a mystery, but since the Desgroseilliers family lived in Parry Sound, Sudbury, and Blue Water (near Sarnia), Ontario, in the early 1940s, it’s likely to be one of those places.

I don’t know who the three little ones are; could they be cousins or are they neighbors’ children?

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Workday Wednesday: Maurice Belair, Bushworker

1945 List of Electors
Rural Preliminary List of Electors, 1945 (Ancestry)

I knew that my late father, Maurice Belair, worked in bush camps as a young man, but I didn’t know the details. I recently called my Aunt Joan (Dad’s younger sister) to see if she could fill in the blanks for me. We had a nice, long chat that lasted about an hour. Aunt Joan remembered how, during the summer school holidays, Dad used to follow his father Fred into the camps to work. When Dad left school (I think it was grade 7 or 8) about 1940-1941, he started to work full-time in the bush. Before he left home, his mother Julie prepared him a ‘goodie’ bag (sort of like what a hobo carries on a stick) to take with him. Dad was only 13 years old.

In the spring of 1945, Dad appeared on a voters’ list as “M. Belair”. He was a bushworker in Camp 49 in the township of Cumming near Kapuskasing, in northern Ontario, Canada. [1] He’s no. 3 on the list of mostly French-Canadian men. (Dad was only 17½ years old at the time, so I’m not sure if he should have been on that voting list.) I had a vague idea of what ‘bushworker’ meant, but Aunt Joan told me that Dad did a young man’s work: he drove horses and cut wood.


Maurice Belair in 1945
Maurice Belair (1945)

Dad must have been a thrifty fellow when he worked in the bush camps. In the above photo, taken in the winter of 1945, he’s dressed in good winter clothes that he bought with his wages.


For the next few years, Dad worked in logging camps, in mills and in mines in places like Matheson, Kirkland Lake and Haileybury in northeastern Ontario. He eventually became a welder after he moved to Blue Water, near Sarnia in southwestern Ontario in the early 1950s. (I’ve written about that occupation in Workday Wednesday: Maurice Belair, Welder.)

Source:

1. “Voters Lists, 1935-1980”, digital images, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 3 March 2016), entry for M. Belair (written as M. Belair, indexed as M Bushworkcr Belair), bushworker, 1945 Rural Preliminary List of Electors, Electoral District of Cochrane, Rural Polling Division No. 210, Camp 35 [and] 49, Township of Cumming, stamped p. 1228; citing Voters Lists, Federal Elections, 1935–1980, R1003-6-3-E (RG113-B), Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Church Record Sunday: Françoise Paquet’s 1731 Burial Record

Two hundred and eighty-five years ago, my 7x maternal great-grandmother Françoise Paquet dite Lavallée died on or about 22 February 1731. [1] A pious and Christian woman, according to her parish priest, she died in peculiar circumstances.

Francoise Paquet 1731 burial record
Françoise Paquet burial record (Ancestry)

First, some background. One of fourteen children of Isaac (Etienne) Paquet dit Lavallée, a French-born soldier, by his wife Elisabeth (Isabelle) Meunier, Françoise was born on 23 November 1682 in St-Laurent on Ile d’Orléans. [2]

Shortly before her twenty-first birthday, Françoise married Charles Lacasse on 12 September 1703 in Beaumont, a village on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River across from Quebec City. [3] The couple had ten children, including Jean Baptiste (1713-1792), my ancestor.

In early December 1730, Charles and Françoise’s 19-year-old son Charles died. [4] His burial record does not state the cause of death, but his passing must have been a great loss to his parents.

On 22 February 1731, Françoise flees from her home in an impaired mental state. The nearby woods are searched, but Françoise is not located. Could her son’s death have precipitated an emotional crisis and led her to lose her reason?

A few weeks later, a young girl looking for domestic animals that had wandered into the forest happened across Françoise’s body. She appeared to have succumbed to the cold weather or from lack of food. Her funeral took place on 23 May 1731 in St-Etienne parish church in Beaumont.

Françoise’s burial record (above) reads in French:

Le ving et trois de may de l’an mil sept cent trente / et un a eté inhumé le corps de françoise paquet dit / Lavallée agée d’environ cinquante cinq ans morte le / vingt et deux du mois de février a ce que nous présumons / qui est le jour que [la dite] femme de Charles Lacasse de / cette paroisse s’est enfuie de chez elle étant privée / de l’usage de ses sens, et qu’on a lieu de croire quelle est / morte ce jour la du froid ou de la faim; elle a été / trouvée par une fille cherchant des bestiaux La vie / quelle a menée nous fait esperaie que Le Seigneur Luy / a fait misericorde ayant vécû en bon exemple et / piété; [La dite] inhumation a eté faite en presence de Jacques / Fournier et de Joachim moleur qui ont declaré ne / savoir signer de ce enquis Suivant l’ordonnance
[signed J. Chasle ptre]

My English translation:

The twenty and three of may of the year one thousand seven hundred thirty / and one was interred the body of françoise paquet dit / Lavallée aged about fifty five years died the / twenty and two of the month of February to which we presume / was the day when the said spouse of Charles Lacasse of / this parish had run away from home being deprived / of the use of her senses, and we are led to believe that she / died that day of frost or of starvation; she was found by a girl looking for farm animals The life / that she led leads us to hope that The Lord has / show mercy [for she] had lived in good example and / piety; The said interrement was done in the presence of Jacques / Fournier and of Joachim moleur who declared they / could not sign [their names] [burial record read aloud for approval] according to regulations
[signed J. Chasle priest]

Parish priests do not ordinarily give so much information about a parishioner’s demise in a burial record. Father Chasle obviously felt compelled to document as fully as possible the circumstances of Françoise’s death. I am grateful for his attention to detail.

Sources:

1. St-Etienne (Beaumont, Quebec), parish register, 1731, p. 4 recto, no entry no., Françoise Paquet burial, 23 May 1731; St-Etienne parish; digital images, “Quebec, Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967”, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 19 April 2016).

2. “Dictionnaire”, database, Programme de recherche en démographie historique (PRDH) (http://www.genealogie.umontreal.ca : accessed 20 April 2016), Isaac Etienne Paquet Lavallee – Elisabeth Isabelle Meunier, Famille no. 3173.

3. Cyprien Tanguay, Dictionnaire généalogique des familles canadiennes, 7 vols (1871–1890, reprint, Montréal: Editions Elysée, 1991), II: 575.

4. “Dictionnaire”, database, Programme de recherche en démographie historique (PRDH) (http://www.genealogie.umontreal.ca : accessed 19 April 2016), Charles Lacasse – Marie Francoise Paquet Lavallee, Famille no. 85852.

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun – Your Genealogy Life

It’s Saturday, and Randy over at Genea-Musings has issued his weekly challenge to his readers.

Tonight’s challenge is “Your Genealogy Life”. Randy asks us to:

1) Tell us about your "genealogy life." How much genealogy and family history work do you do, on average, each week? What tasks do you routinely perform every day, every month, every year?
2) Share your genealogy life in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or on Facebook or google+.

Here’s what my genealogy life looks like.

During the week, I spend about 8-10 hours daily on genealogy. For example, I

• read genealogy blogs;
• research and write articles for my blog;
• sort and file paperwork;
• scan and identify family photos and documents;
• read genealogy magazines (like Family Tree Magazine) and membership publications (I belong to three Canadian genealogical societies);
• research my ancestry and those of my relatives;
• standardize and add citation sources to my ancestry databases (in MS Word);
• post to and read updates on favorite groups in Facebook;
• watch webinars (like those at Legacy Family Tree) and weekly hangouts (like Mondays with Myrt).

I attend genealogy seminars in the Lower Mainland (hosted by the LDS in Abbotsford in the spring and in Surrey in the fall) and in the Okanagan (hosted every two years by the KDGS in Kelowna in September). I like to listen to live-streamed sessions of yearly genealogy conferences like RootsTech, NGS and SCGS Jamboree.

Now and then, I research at public libraries that have large genealogical collections like the Cloverdale branch of the Surrey Public Library and the Main branch of the Vancouver Public Library. Less often, I research at the Koerner Library at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

What does your genealogy life look like, dear readers?

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Sibling Saturday: The Children of Jean-Baptiste Bouchard (1698-1755)

My 6x maternal great-grandfather Jean-Baptiste Bouchard was the father of ten children: five sons, four daughters, and one child of unknown gender. At least three survived, but only two of them married – my ancestor Joseph Prosper (b. 1743) and his sister Marie-Louise (b. 1752).
Repentigny, St. Lawrence River
Repentigny, fleuve Saint-Laurent

Jean-Baptiste was born on 17 January 1698 in Montreal. [1] He was a younger son of Jean-Baptiste Bouchard and Marie-Antoinette Chouart, daughter of the famed explorer Médard Chouart, sieur des Groseilliers.

When Jean-Baptiste was 36 years old, he married Marie-Josèphe de Chavigny on 26 September 1734 in Beauport. [2] Marie-Josèphe, who was 17 years old when she married, was a younger daughter of François de Chavigny, sieur de La Chevrotière by his second wife Geneviève Guyon.

Jean-Baptiste worked as a commis (agent) at several fur trading posts of the Domaine du roi (King’s Domain), like Mistassini, Ashuapmouchouan and Ilets de Jérémie. [3]

He died on 11 October 1755 [4]. His wife Marie-Josèphe survived him and died on 19 July 1762. [5]

Jean-Baptiste’s surname varied during his lifetime. For example, he was:
Bouchard at his baptism in 1698,
Dorval Degroseliers at his marriage in 1734 (he signed J. b: dorval),
Dorval Des Groselier at a son’s baptism in 1740 (he signed desgroselier),
Dorval Desgrosellier at a son’s burial in 1741,
Dorval at a son’s baptism in 1742, 
Desgroseliers and Desgrozeliers at a son’s baptism and burial in 1746, and
• Desgroseliers at his burial in 1755.

The children of Jean-Baptiste Bouchard and Marie-Josèphe de Chavigny

Note: All locations are in the present-day province of Quebec, Canada. “Quebec” refers to the city of Quebec. The children’s surnames appear in parentheses.

1. (f) – Marie Joseph (Desgroseliers, 1775) [6]
• born about 1736 (age (39) at death)
• died on 25 April 1775
• buried on 27 April 1775 in Repentigny.

2. (m) – Jean Baptiste Ambroise (Dorval, 1739) [7]
• born [not stated in his baptism record]
• baptised on 11 July 1739 in [Ilets de Jérémie] Tadoussac (Postes du Domaine du roi)
• died [unknown].

3. (m) – Joseph Louis (Dorval, 1740, 1741) [8]
• born on 2 September 1740 in Quebec
• baptised on 3 September 1740 in Quebec
• died [not stated in his burial record] (age (four months old) at death)
• buried on 4 January 1741 in Quebec.

4. (f) – Marie-Louise (Dorval, 1742) [9]
• born on 11 May 1742 in Deschambault
• baptised on 12 May 1742 in Deschambault
• died on 7 July 1742 in Deschambault
• buried on 8 July 1742 in Deschambault.

5. (m) – Joseph Prosper (Dorval, 1743; Desgroseliers, 1772, Desgrosier [Desgrosillier], 1795, Desgrosellier, 1800) [10]
• born on 19 May 1743 in Deschambault
• baptised on 19 May 1743 in Deschambault*
• died between 1 February 1795 (he was present at his daughter Léonor’s baptism) and 28 July 1800 (he was described as deceased at his son Ambroise’s marriage)
• married on 17 February 1772 in Châteauguay, Charlotte Nunegand dite Beaurosier, daughter of François Lunégand dit Beaurosier and Marie Louise Ouimet.

* I've transcribed and translated Joseph Prosper's baptism record here.

6. (m) – Joseph Eléonord (Eleonard) (Desgroseliers, 1746, Desgrozeliers, 1746) [11]
• born on 23 May 1746 in Deschambault
• baptised on 23 May 1746 in Deschambault
• died on 20 June 1746 in Deschambault
• buried on 20 June 1746 in Deschambault.

7. (m) – François Eléonord (Eleonard) (Desgroseliers, 1748, Desgrozeliers, 1748) [12]
• born on 12 May 1748 in Deschambault
• baptised on 12 May 1748 in Deschambault
• died on 11 July 1748 in Deschambault
• buried on 12 July 1748 in Deschambault.

8. (f) – Marie Françoise (Desgroseliers, 1750) [13]
• born on 31 July 1750 in Deschambault
• baptised on 31 July 1750 in Deschambault
• died 22 August 1750 in Deschambault
• buried on 23 August 1750 in Deschambault.

9. (f) – Marie Louise (Desgroseliers, 1752 and 1772, Dégroseillier, 1795) [14]
• born on 7 November 1752 in Deschambault
• baptised on 7 November 1752 in Deschambault
• died on 11 April 1795 in St-Paul-de-Lavaltrie
• buried 12 April 1795 in St-Paul-de-Lavaltrie
• married on 2 March 1772 in Repentigny, Pierre Euphrosine Arnaud (Renaud), son of Henri Arnaud (Renaud) and Marie Marguerite de Chavigny and widower of Marie-Josephe Desjardins.

10. [unnamed child of unspecified gender] (Desgrozeliers, 1755) [15]
• born on 13 April 1755 in Deschambault
• died on 13 April 1755 in Deschambault
• buried on 13 April 1755 in Deschambault.

Note: No child named Marguerite, born and baptised on 2 November 1748 in Quebec, appears in the list of children at PRDH. Tanguay is in error when he places Marguerite among the (incomplete) list of Jean-Baptiste and Marie-Josèphe’s children. According to her baptism record, Marguerite was the daughter of Jean Marie Dorceval and Marie Joseph [last name omitted]. [16]

Sources:

Image credit: “Repentigny, fleuve Saint-Laurent”, by George Heriot (1759-1839), Library and Archives Canada, Acc. No. 1989-470-14.


1. Notre-Dame (Montreal, Quebec), parish register, 1695-1699, page no. illegible, no entry no. (1698), Jean Baptiste Bouchard baptism, 18 January 1698; Notre-Dame parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 11 May 2016).


2. Notre-Dame (Beauport, Quebec), parish register, 1720-1778, no page no., no entry no. (1734), Jean Baptiste Dorval de Groselier – Marie Joseph de Chevigny marriage, 26 September 1734; Notre-Dame parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


3. J.-Allan Burgesse, “Les Registres du Postes du Roi”, Mémoires de la Société généalogique canadienne-française 3 (juin 1949): 211-216, specifically p. 213; DVD edition (Montreal, QC: SGCF, 2013). According to Jetté, he was a “marchand de fourrures”. (René Jetté, Dictionnaire généalogique des familles du Québec (Montréal: Les Presses de l’Université de Montréal, 1983), 134.) According to Tanguay, he was an “agent de la compagnie d’Occident”. (Cyprien Tanguay, Dictionnaire généalogique des familles canadiennes, 7 vols (1871–1890, reprint, Montréal: Editions Elysée, 1991), II: 367, note 4.)


4. St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 56 verso, no entry no. (1755), Jean Baptiste Desgroseliers (written as Jean Baptiste Desgroseliers, indexed as Jean Desgroseliers) burial, 12 October 1755; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Quebec Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967”, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 10 October 2015).


5. St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, page no. illegible, no entry no. (1762), Josette Lachevrotieres burial, 20 July 1762; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


6. “Dictionnaire”, database, Programme de recherche en démographie historique (PRDH) (http://www.genealogie.umontreal.ca : accessed 13 January 2012), Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, La-Purification-de-la-Bienheureuse-Vierge-Marie (Repentigny, Quebec), parish register, 1746-1775, p. 264 verso, no entry no. (1775), Marie Joseph Desgroseliers burial, [27] April 1775; Purification de la Bienheureuse-Vierge-Marie parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


7. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, Burgesse, “Les Registres du Postes du Roi”, 213.


8. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, Notre-Dame (Quebec, Quebec), parish register, 1738-1743, p. 9 penned recto (p. 109 stamped), no entry no. (1740), Joseph Louis Dorval baptism, 3 September 1740; Notre-Dame parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016). And, Notre-Dame (Quebec, Quebec), parish register, 1738-1743, p. 27 penned recto (p. 127 stamped), no entry no. (1741), [first name omitted] Dorval burial, 4 January 1741; Notre-Dame parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


9. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 8 recto, no entry no. (1742), Marie Louise Dorval baptism, 12 May 1742; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016). And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 9 verso, no entry no. (1742), Marie Louise Dorval burial, 8 July 1742; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


10. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 10 verso, no entry no. (1743), Joseph Prosper Dorval baptism, 19 May 1743; St-Joseph parish; digital images,  “Quebec Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967", Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 17 May 2016). And, St-Joachim (Châteauguay, Quebec), parish register, 1768-1775, pp. 36-37, no entry no. (1772), Joseph Prosper Desgroseliers – Charlotte Nunegand marriage, 17 February 1772; St-Joachim parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 30 June 2015).


11. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 20 recto, no entry no. (1746), Joseph Eleonard Desgroseliers baptism, 23 May 1746; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016). And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 20 verso, no entry no. (1746), Joseph Eleonard Desgrozeliers burial, 20 June 1746; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


12. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 25 recto, no entry no. (1748), François Eleonord Desgroseliers baptism, 12 May 1748; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016). And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1740-1748, p. 26 recto, no entry no. (1748), François Eleonore Desgrozeliers burial, 12 July 1748; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


13. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 34 verso, no entry no. (1750), Marie Françoise Desgroseliers baptism, 31 July 1750; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016). And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 35 recto, no entry no. (1750), Marie Françoise Desgroseliers burial, 23 August 1750; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


14. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 44 recto, no entry no. (1752), Marie Louise Desgroseliers baptism, 7 November 1752; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016). And, St-Paul (St-Paul-de-Lavaltrie, Quebec), parish register, 1786-1795, page no. illegible, entry no. S.12 (1795), Marie Louise Dégroseillier burial, 12 April 1795; St-Paul parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016). And, La-Purification-de-la-Bienheureuse-Vierge-Marie (Repentigny, Quebec), parish register, 1746-1775, p. 232 recto, no entry no. (1772), Pierre Arnaud – Marie Louise Desgroseliers marriage, 2 March 1772; Purification de la Bienheureuse-Vierge-Marie parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016). Although Marie Louise and Pierre were first cousins (their mothers were sisters), their marriage record does not mention if they received a dispensation to marry.


15. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 54 verso, no entry no. (1755), [unnamed child of unspecified gender] Desgrozeliers burial, 7 November 1752; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


16. “Dictionnaire”, PRDH, Jean Baptiste Bouchard Dorval Desgroseliers – Marie Josephe Dechavigny Lachevrotieres, Famille no. 19093. And, Cyprien Tanguay, Dictionnaire généalogique des familles canadiennes, 7 vols (1871–1890, reprint, Montréal: Editions Elysée, 1991), II: 367. And, Notre-Dame (Quebec, Quebec), parish register, 1743-1748, p. 70 verso stamped, no entry no. (1748), Marguerite Dorceval baptism, 2 November 1748; Notre-Dame parish; digital images, “Le LAFRANCE”, Généalogie Québec (http://www.genealogiequebec.com : accessed 10 May 2016).


Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Happy Birthday, Brother!

Yvonne Belair holding her brother Raymond Belair

When I was a little girl, I used to wish I had a big brother. For the first years of my life, there was just me and my younger sister, Marianne, at home. I don’t know why I wanted a big brother. I think it was because if I had an older brother, he could be the ‘big’ one, someone who could set an example for us two young ones.


When Mom was expecting in late 1969, I hoped my new sibling would be a girl. I told myself that a new sister would be fun to have around, to play with, to shop with, and to giggle with. Then, one night in the spring of 1970, Dad took Mom to the hospital. The nurse told Dad it would be hours before anything would happen, so he came home and went to bed. When the telephone rang a few hours later, my sister and I didn’t notice. Suddenly, we heard Dad hollering at the top of his lungs, “I have a son! I have a son!”

Dad immediately got me to telephone friends, family and relatives. (I think he was too excited to speak calmly.) I can still see myself at the phone table in the living room (we had the metal kind with an attached padded seat and little tabletop for the phone) calling people. I kept telling Dad it was too late to be waking our relatives, especially the out-of-province ones, but he insisted that it was OK to do so.

When Marianne and I went to see Mom later that day at the hospital, we only got a glimpse of our little brother. We couldn’t see much of his features, thanks to his being all wrapped up in his baby blankets as he lay asleep in his cot, along with the other newborns in the nursery.

That unforgettable day was 19 May 1970 – the day my brother was born. Happy birthday, Raymond!

Raymond Belair

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Joseph Prosper Desgroseilliers’ 1743 Baptism Record

Two hundred and seventy-three years ago today, my maternal 5x great-grandfather, Joseph Prosper Desgroseilliers, was born.

Joseph Prosper Desgroseilliers baptism record
Joseph Prosper Desgroseilliers baptism record (Ancestry)

Joseph Prosper was the fifth child and third son of Jean-Baptiste Bouchard (aka Dorval, Desgroseliers) and Marie-Josèphe de Chavigny. Born on 19 May 1743, he was baptised that day at St-Joseph church in the seigneurie d'Eschambault (Deschambault). [1] The seigneurie, located on the north shore of the St. Lawrence River between Trois-Rivières and Québec, belonged to Joseph Prosper’s maternal grandfather François de Chavigny, sieur de la Chevrotière.

My transcription of his baptism record, above:

Le dix neuvieme jour de mois de may de l’année mil sept cent quarante trois / dans leglise de St. Joseph sur le Cap Lauzon seigneurie d’Eschambaux a été / baptisé Joseph Prosper né de ce même jour du légitime mariage de Sieur Jean baptiste Dorval et de [demoiselle] marie Joseph Lachevrotieres ses pere et mere / residans de temps en temps dans la seigneurie delachevrotieres paroisse de / Saint Joseph. Le parrain a été Joseph Chapelin et la marraine marguerite lesot / lesquels ont déclaré ne scavoir écrire ni signer de ce enquois suivant [l’ordonnance] / lequel bapteme a été fait par nous prêtre soussigné curé de la ditte paroisse / de Saint-Joseph En foy de quoi nous avons signé au dit lieu dans nôtre maison [presbêtitalle?] le jour et an que de [mai?][signed Menage ptre]

My English translation:

The nineteenth day of month of may of the year one thousand seven hundred forty three / in the church St. Joseph on the Cap Lauzon seigniory of d’Eschambaux was / baptised Joseph Prosper born of this same day of the legitimate marriage of Sieur Jean baptiste Dorval and of [young lady] marie Joseph Lachevrotieres his father and mother / residing from time to time in the seigniory delachevrotieres parish of / Saint Joseph. The godfather was Joseph Chapelin and the godmother marguerite lesot / who declared could not write nor sign [their names] as inquired following the [ordinance] / said baptism was made by us undersigned priest of the said parish / of Saint-Joseph In faith we have signed at said place in our [presbyterial?] house the day and year of [May?][signed Menage priest]

In February 1772, Joseph Prosper married Charlotte Nunegand dite Beaurosier in Châteauguay. The couple had 13 children, including my ancestor François.

Joseph Prosper died at an unknown date and location. However, the event occurred between 1 February 1795, when he was present at his daughter Léonor’s baptism, and 28 July 1800, when he was described as deceased at his son Ambroise’s marriage.

Source:

1. St-Joseph (Deschambault, Quebec), parish register, 1713-1791, p. 10 verso, no entry no. (1743), Joseph Prosper Dorval baptism, 19 May 1743; St-Joseph parish; digital images, “Quebec Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967”, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 17 May 2016).

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Mount St. Helens Eruption – 36th anniversary

Mount St. Helens, one day before the devastating eruption
“Mount St. Helens, one day before the devastating eruption” [1]

18 May 1980 was a Sunday. I was working the morning shift as a kitchen helper at the Kettle Valley Restaurant in downtown Hope. The telephone rang and Lee, the owner-manager, answered. The call lasted maybe a minute or two. As he hung up the phone, he said something about a Mount St. Helens. It had erupted at 8:32 a.m. I had no idea where Mount St. Helens was, because I was new to the area, having only recently moved to British Columbia. (I later found out that Mount St. Helens, a volcano, is about 417 km south of Hope in Skamania County, Washington State, USA.) When I got home that afternoon, I learned from TV news reports just how catastrophic the eruption had been.

MSH80 eruption mount st helens 05-18-80
“MSH80 eruption mount st helens 05-18-80” [2]

Photo sources:

1. Wikipedia contributors, "Mount St. Helens", Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_St._Helens : accessed 8 May. 2016).

2. Wikipedia contributors, "Mount St. Helens", Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_St._Helens : accessed 8 May. 2016).

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Maurice Belair and the Coquihalla Highway

2016 marks the 30th anniversary of the completion of the first phase of the Coquihalla Highway in British Columbia, Canada. The new highway was “carved out of some of the toughest, most daunting terrain in British Columbia”. [1] It cost $375,000,000 and took nearly two years to build. [2]

View of the unfinished Coquihalla Highway
View of the unfinished Coquihalla Highway from Maurice's truck (ca 1985)

My late father Maurice Belair was one of the 1000s of men and women who worked on that project from 1984 to 1986. He and his trusty Mack dump truck worked on Phase 1 (Hope to Merritt) of the 120 km (about 74.5 miles) toll highway. [3]

Mack dump truck on unfinished Coquihalla Highway
Maurice's dump truck on the unfinished Coquihalla Highway (ca 1985)

In early May 1986, Dad received a letter from the Ministry of Transportation and Highways (MOTH) to thank him for his “contribution in helping build the Coquihalla Highway”.

MOTH letter to Maurice Belair

We still have the letter, but the pin seems to be missing. I know that I didn’t attend the official opening on 16 May 1986, but I can’t remember if Dad did.

Sources:

1. “Coquihalla: more than just a new highway”, The Hope (British Columbia) Standard, 14 May 1986, p. 4.

2. “Paving starts in spring”, The Hope (British Columbia) Standard, 8 January 1986, p. 3.

3. “Paving starts in spring”, The Hope Standard, 8 January 1986.

Copyright (c) 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Church Record Sunday: Marie Elisabeth Martel’s 1816 Burial Record

Two hundred years ago this month, my paternal 4x great-grandmother, Marie Elisabeth Martel, died.

1816 burial record of Marie Elisabeth Martel
Marie Elisabeth Martel burial record (Ancestry)

Marie Elisabeth was born on 16 August 1733 in St-Antoine-de-Tilly, located on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River, near Quebec City. She was the eldest child of Joseph (Louis) Martel by his first wife Marie Légaré.

When she was 16½ years old, Marie Elisabeth married Pierre Jean Boileau (Bouleau) on 7 January 1750 in Ste-Geneviève (now Pierrefonds), just west of Montreal. The couple had four children (the two youngest died when infants) before Pierre died in June 1760.

Widow Marie Elisabeth remarried on 7 January 1761 in Ste-Geneviève. Her second husband, François Janvry dit Belair, was a French-born soldier. Their six children, including my ancestor Pierre (1772-1848), were born in Ste-Geneviève.

Marie Elisabeth died on 13 May 1816. [1] She was buried the next day in Ste-Geneviève. The priest recorded her age as 86, but she was three months shy of her 83rd birthday.

The burial record (above) reads in French:

L’an mil huit cent seize quatorze mai je soussigné ai inhumé dans le / cimetière le corps de marie elisabeth martel femme d [blank space] janvry / habitant de cette paroisse décédé d’hier agée de quatre vingt six / ans munie des Sacrements furent presents pierre [pilon?] forcier louis / lalonde et antoine Demers qui n’ont su signer [signed Dumouchelle ptre]

My English translation:

The year one thousand eight hundred sixteen fourteen may I undersigned have interred in the / cemetery the boy of marie elisabeth martel wife of [blank space] janvry / settler of this parish died of yesterday aged eighty six / years provided with the Sacraments were present pierre [pilon?] forcier louis / lalonde et antoine Demers who did not know how to sign [their names] [signed Dumouchelle priest]

Source:

1. Ste-Geneviève (Pierrefonds, Quebec), parish register, 1812-1823, p. 90 verso, no entry no. (1816), Marie Elisabeth Martel burial, 14 May 1816; Ste-Geneviève parish; digital images, “Quebec, Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967”, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 28 April 2008).

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Friday’s Faces from the Past: The Card Players

Maurice Belair with Fred Belair and Ray Belair

Here’s my Dad (in the centre) with his father Fred (on the right) and his brother Ray (on the left).

The picture was taken at our townhouse on Willow Street in Hope in May 1981.

We were playing cards – the hands in the lower right corner shuffle a deck of cards and the yellow pot in the centre of the table holds the money.

It was probably a game like “Chase the Ace”, because I see single dimes on the table.

Dad, Pépère Fred, and Uncle Ray have all passed away, but time has not erased the memories of those fun, family games.

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Monday, May 09, 2016

Charlotte Beaurosier’s 1835 Burial Record

One hundred and eighty-one years ago today, 9 May 1835, my maternal 5x great-grandmother, Charlotte Nunegand dite Beaurosier, died.

Charlotte Beaurosier 1835 burial record
Charlotte Beaurosier burial record (FamilySearch)

Born in July 1754, Charlotte was one of six children of François Lunegent (aka Lunegant, Nunegand) dit Beaurosier and his wife Marie Louise Ouimet. In February 1772, Charlotte married Joseph Prosper Desgroseilliers, by whom she had thirteen children, including younger son François (born in 1783), my ancestor.

Joseph Prosper died at an unknown location and unknown date between 1795 and 1800. Charlotte, who survived him, died on 9 May 1835. [1] Their eldest son Ambroise (1774-1860) was present at her burial the next day in the cemetery of St-Joachim parish in Châteauguay, Quebec.

The burial record (above) reads in French:

Le dix mai mil huit cent trente-cinq / par nous Pretre soussigné a été inhumée dans le cime- / tière Charlotte Beaurosier veuve de Joseph Desgros- / eillers de cette paroisse, décédé la veille, agée d’environ / quatre-vingt-deux ans. Présents Ambroise Desgroseil- / lers, Louis Giroux, Augustin Plante et plusieurs / autres qui n’ont su signer.[signed JB Labelle Ptre]

My English translation:

The ten May one thousand thirty five / by us undersigned Priest was interred in the ceme- / tery Charlotte Beaurosier widow of Joseph Desgros- / eillers of this parish, died the previous [day], aged about / eighty-two years. Present Ambroise Desgroseil- / lers, Louis Giroux, Augustin Plante and several / others who knew not how to sign [their names].[signed JB Labelle Prst]

Source:

1. St-Joachim (Châteauguay, Quebec), parish register, p. 13 recto, entry no. S. 29, Charlotte Beaurosier burial, 10 May 1835; St-Joachim parish; digital images, "Québec, registres paroissiaux catholiques, 1621-1979", FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 3 May 2016). Note: To access this browsable-only image, follow this path from the FamilySearch homepage: Search > Records > Canada > Quebec, Catholic Parish Registers, 1621-1979 > [Browse] > Châteauguay > Saint-Joachim-de-Châteauguay > Baptêmes, mariages, sépultures 1829-1839 > image 342 of 535.

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Maritime Monday: S/S Lake Superior and the May 1899 Doukhobors

S/S Lake Superior
S/S Lake Superior

It was 117 years ago today – 9 May 1899 – that the Lake Superior arrived at Quebec City. The steamship left Larnaca, a port in Cyprus, on 18 April 1899. On board were 1,036 Doukhobors. They were originally from the province of Tiflis in the Russian Empire, but left there in 1898 for Cyprus. [1]


These men, women and children were the third group of exiled Doukhobors to arrive in Canada. They were accompanied by a ‘voyage organizer’, medical personnel (a doctor and two nurses), and five ‘Doukhobor sympathizers’. [2]

Seventy-three different Doukhobor surnames appear on the manifest. [3] I don’t believe that any of my husband’s ancestors were part of this May contingent.


Sources:

Image credit: Photo of S/S Lake Superior (built 1884), digital image, Norway – Heritage (http://www.norwayheritage.com : accessed 8 January 2014).

1. Steve Lapshinoff & Jonathan Kalmakoff, Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists 1898-1928 (Crescent Valley: self-published, 2001), 24; citing National Archives of Canada, microfilm reel #C-4542.

2. Lapshinoff, Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists 1898-1928, 24.

3. Lapshinoff, Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists 1898-1928, 24-48.

Copyright © 2015, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Sunday, May 08, 2016

Church Record Sunday: Pierre Belair’s 1941 Burial Record

Seventy-five years ago, my paternal great-grandfather Pierre Belair died on 6 May 1941.[1] He was 89½ years old, the father of 16 children (ten predeceased him), and outlived three wives.

Pierre Belair burial record

I first saw Pierre’s burial record when I visited Ste-Cécile-de-Masham (now La Pêche), Gatineau County, Quebec in the 1980s. The parish church secretary allowed me to look at and photocopy family records from Ste-Cécile’s sacramental registers. Years later, I got the opportunity to re-view my great-grandfather’s burial record after I got a subscription to Ancestry.ca. The image, my transcription and my translation are from that site.

Pierre’s burial record (above) reads in French:

Le huit mai mil neuf cent quarante et un, nous soussigné / curé avons inhumé dans le cimétière de cette paroisse / le corps de Pierre Bélair époux de feues Anna Meunier / Mathilde Cloutier et de Rosalie Lavictoire, décédé en / cette paroisse, muni des derniers Sacrements de l’Eglise / le six du courant mois à l’âge de quatre-vingt-dix / ans et cinq mois. Furent présents Joseph Bélair, Paul / Bélair et autres qui ont signé. Lecture faite.
[signed Paul Bélair / Joseph Bélair / J.R.X. Filiatreault ptre curé]

My English translation:

The eight May one thousand one hundred forty one, we undersigned / [parish priest] have interred in the cemetery of this parish / the body of Pierre Bélair spouse of the late Anna Meunier / Mathilde Cloutier and of Rosalie Lavictoire, died / in this parish, provided with the last Sacrements of the Church / the six of the current month at the age of ninety / years and five months. Were present Joseph Bélair, Paul / Bélair and others who signed. Reading [of this record] done.
[signed Paul Bélair / Joseph Bélair / J.R.X. Filiatreault parish priest]

Most of my CRS posts end about here, but today I’m adding something else: a summary of what I learned about Pierre from this record.

Summary of Pierre Belair burial record

One thing I didn’t learn, though, was if my grandfather Fred, Pierre’s younger son, attended his father’s funeral. His name is not recorded as being present, but I suspect that he wasn’t there. Fred, who lived in the small village of Fauquier in northern Ontario, might not have received the sad news in time to make the journey to Masham.

Source:

1. Ste-Cécile (Ste-Cécile-de-Masham, Quebec), parish register, 1930-1943, p. 326 (stamped), entry no. S.7 (1941), Pierre Bélair burial, 8 May 1941; Ste-Cécile-de-Masham parish; digital images, “Quebec Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967”, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 1 March 2012).

Copyright © 2016, Yvonne Demoskoff.