Irish immigrants to the province of Quebec arrived at the port of Quebec City from the earliest days of the 19th century. From there, the British authorities began the process of allocating lands to these mostly poor Irish settlers. Some went to Montreal, where many of the men were hired to work on big construction projects such as the Lachine Canal in the early 1820s. Others settled in small hamlets in Portneuf, Lotbinière, Drummond, Gaspé, Huntingdon, Chateauguay, Joliette, Maskinongé, Montcalm, Napierville, Richmond and Deux Montagnes counties, as well as in the Ottawa Valley region. Many Irish Protestants moved further west, to Upper Canada.
Marianna O’Gallagher (1929-2010) wrote numerous books about the Irish of Quebec, and one of her texts inspired Rev. John A. Gallagher to write St. Patrick’s Parish – Quebec. This article recalls the communal life of the Irish Catholic families of Quebec City before their final departures to various communities across the province. You can find this article online at http://www.umanitoba.ca/colleges/st_pauls/ccha/Back%20Issues/CCHA1947-48/Gallagher.pdf
The region of Frampton, in Dorchester County, was the site of one of the earliest rural settlements of Irish Catholic families in Quebec. Today, Frampton is in a beautiful area known as the Beauce, south of Quebec City, and the community is almost completely French-speaking, but 150 years ago things were very different. You will find a 62-page text entitled Irish Life in Rural Quebec: a history of Frampton, by Patrick M. Redmond, online at http://www.framptonirish.com/frampton/content/Irish_Life.pdf It includes the names of many individuals, as well as statistics, extensive footnotes and a bibliography.
The Frampton Irish Website, http://www.framptonirish.com/frampton/Whats_New.cfm, written by Dennis McLane, includes a database of more than 12,000 names. This database has also been posted to the public member trees section of Ancestry.com. Irish Needles, McLane’s three-volume history of the Frampton Irish, is available from http://www.Amazon.com. These three books are:
Volume I – Irish Needles: The History of the Frampton Irish – 245 pages – 3,600 families – 13,200 people > $20 US
Volume II – Genealogy Compendium of the Frampton Irish, A-K – 405 pages > $25 US
Volume III – Genealogy Compendium of the Frampton Irish. L-Z – 389 pages > $25 US