All posts by Jacques Gagné

Huguenot Refugees

On August 25, 1572, on the feast day of St Bartholomew, thousands of Huguenots were massacred by government forces in Paris and in other regions of France.

From the same year of 1572 a large-scale emigration from France by Protestant familiies began.

Over the next few weeks, I will post web site addresses which are known to many family researchers but perhaps some of you who might be beginners in the field of family searches, some of these web sites might open doors to your research endeavours.

As part of these overviews I will concentrate on web sites which are linked indirectly to Canada and especially to Québec.

Michel Barbeau in his precise and well researched web site Huguenots in Canada has identified 321 Huguenots who settled into Nouvelle France from about 1634 to 1763. You can find this important database online at

Unfortunately, Protestants were not welcomed to Nouvelle France. The majority of Protestant families during the period under the French Regime were forced to abjure (renounce) their Protestant faith, see:

On the subject of abjuration in Nouvelle France, I will address this issue at a later date and indicate where one can obtain copies of acts of abjuration in Québec during the period under the French authorities.

Following the British conquest at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham in Québec on September 13th 1759 by the Imperial Army under the command of General James Wolfe, French language Protestants were welcomed into the new British Colony of Québec.

And in future postings I will try to identify some of the families who were considered to be Huguenots in Québec.

A limited number of United Empire Loyalists who settled into Québec and Lower Canada were Huguenots, I will also address these immigrants to Québec and Lower Canada.

Subsequent postings to this blog will include shortly research guides dealing with the Huguenot emigration routes through France, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the Walloon region of modern-day Belgium from about 1596 onward.

For the time being I have selected a few web addresses which might shed lights on your research process of the Huguenot families who might have settled into Québec (British North America) and Lower Canada from 1759 onward.

> Huguenots of France and Elsewhere
> Huguenot & Walloon Genealogy  –
> Huguenot Surname Index  –
> Huguenots in the Channel Islands
> The Huguenots in France and the Atlantic Diaspora

Much more to follow over the next few weeks.

Jacques Gagné

Canada’s Forgotten Slaves: Two Centuries of Bondage – Marcel Trudel

Canada’s Forgotten Slaves: Two Centuries of Bondage

Author: Marcel Trudel

English translation by: George Tombs

The attached deals with a book at the QFHS Library in Pointe-Claire, Québec within theEstelle Brisson cabinet by Marcel Trudel entitled L’esclavage au Canada français“. This book of 324 pages has been translated into the English language by George Tombs and based from comments from reviewers, George Tombs did a well done translation.

Based on the writings of the late Marcel Trudel, there were 4,185 legally owned slaves in Nouvelle France from 1689 to 1759.

Governor Jacques-René de Brisay, Marquis de Denonville, governor of Nouvelle France from 1685 to 1689, had secured from King of France Louis XIV permission for some of the privileged “Seigneurs of Nouvelle France” to keep slaves in the French North American colony – France itself had abolished slavery but allowed the practice in its colonies.

Many family researchers in Québec are not aware of the content of Marcel Trudel’s book about slavery in New France, perhaps to be associated somehow with slavery might not be a subject we care to explore too deeply.

We might not like what we may find about our ancestors in Nouvelle France.

Book in question, English language version, translated by George Tombs, available at Véhicule Press

255 pages –

ISBN10: 155065327X

ISBN13:  9781550653274

CDN $27.95


In Consequence of Loyalty – A pioneer history – John and Kay Chesser

QFHS Library book # UEL-HG-157.9 C5 2002

Book donated by the authors in 2005

This book of 177 pages deals with a young Scottish soldier who fought with the British Army in 1757 during the Seven Years War.

The flight of his family from New York State to Canada.

A son of this Scottish soldier prospered and raised a large family in the bicultural surroundings of Lower Canada.

The authors describe the exodus routes taken by hundreds of Loyalists from 1783 onward from Albany, New York, through Saratoga, Fort George, Lake George, Fort Anne, Ticonderoga, Crown Point, Plattsburgh to Québec.

A second exodus route originated in Bennington, Vermont, through Fort Edward, Skenesborough, Burlington, Milton to Québec.

The authors describe the hamlets in which the Loyalists settled into; Hemmingford, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu (St. John’s), Chateauguay, Chambly, Sorel, Saint-Eustache, Pointe Fortune, L’Orignal, Papineauville.

Other books within the United Empire Loyalist section at QFHS describe the exodus routes taken by other families to regions such as Machiche (Yamachiche), Berthierville, Sorel, Brandon (Saint-Gabriel-de-Brandon), Three Rivers (Trois-Rivières)

Other books describe the exodus routes from Stanford County of the region of Fairfield in Connecticut.

Other books describe the exodus routes from Rhode Island to the Yamachiche (Machiche) region of Québec and subsequently to the Gaspé Peninsula.

Other books describe the exodus routes from a region described at the time as the Catskill State of New York, the latter group of Loyalists appear to have settled hamlets along the shores of the Richelieu River and Missisquoi Bay.

This precious collection of books within the United Empire Loyalist section contains dozens of books about the Loyalists of Québec.

W. Stanford Reid, An Evangelical Calvinist in the Academy

ReidMy copy of this 401 page-tome by A. Donald MacLeod has a few coffee stains and a few highlighted portions but overall it’s still in good shape.

Rev. W. Stanford Reid was a leading Presbyterian Minister in Montreal after World War 2 – He was a Professor at McGill University – He was associated with the Presbyterian College at McGill University.

He was the son of another Presbyterian Minister, he was the grandson of another Presbyterian Minister, the latter born in Scotland who settled with his family  in Compton County and opened a large Church of Scotland for the Hebridean Scots of the region.

He was a Pastor at some of the leading Presbyterian Churches in Montreal and Westmount after WWII.

At one point in time at the Presbyterian College in Montreal, he was influenced by the teachings on Calvinism by Rev. Donald Harvey MacVicar,  at the time, a leading Presbyterian Minister in Montreal and also a distinguished professor at the Presbyterian College at McGill University.

Pastor W. Stanford Reid as indicated above and for the rest of his life embraced the teachings of John Calvin (Huguenots) which was taught and promoted by Rev. Donald Harvey MacVicar and others in Québec and other parts of Canada, especially Ontario at the time.

Pastor W. Stanford Reid eventually opened one of the largest Presbyterian Churches in Montréal in the Town of Mount-Royal. It’s now a United Church of Canada parish.

This book is not for your average reader but if one wants to understand fully why there were so many variations to the Church of Scotland and later the Presbyterian Church in Québec and in the rest of Canada, this explains it.

A copy of the book is available for purchase at–stanford-reid-products-9780773528185.php.