15,409 newspaper obituaries added and 30,424 Drouin Collection images re-digitized on Genealogy Quebec!

15,409 newspaper obituaries were added to Genealogy Quebec‘s obituary section this week. In addition to these new death notices, some 30,424 images from the Drouin Collection Records have been re-digitized to improve their readability.

Newspaper obituaries

15,409 obituaries, mainly from the Montreal and Quebec City regions, are now available in Genealogy Quebec’s Obituary section under the Newspaper obituaries category. Most of these death notices were published within the last 2 years.

The Newspaper obituaries section contains around 678,000 obituaries from various newspapers in Quebec, Ontario and New Brunswick. The notices date from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.

You may browse the Obituary section with a Genealogy Quebec subscription at this address, and you will find more information about this section on the Drouin Institute’s blog.

Drouin Collection re-digitization

In addition to our frequent content updates, the Drouin Institute is actively working on improving the quality of the collections already available on Genealogy Quebec.

With this in mind, we are currently re-digitizing many Drouin Collection parishes that were poorly digitized in the past. Some 30,424 images have been re-digitized in this update.


Old image


Re-digitzed image from the Drouin Collection

Here is a list of the parishes that have been re-digitized:

Montréal-Sud (St-Georges) Montréal (St-Georges) Montréal (Ste-Clotilde)
Montréal (St-Dominic) Montréal (St-Étienne) St-Michel (St-Bernardin-de-Sienne)
Longueuil (co-cathédrale St-Antoine-de-Pade) LeMoyne (St-Josaphat) Montréal (St-Jean-Baptiste-de-la-Salle)
Montréal (Très-St-Rédempteur) La Prairie (Notre-Dame-de-LaPrairie-de-la-Madeleine) Montréal (St-Henri)
Caughnawaga (St-François-Xavier-du-Sault-St-Louis) Montréal (St-Charles) Montréal (Saint Anthony of Padua)
Montréal (Notre-Dame-des-Victoires) Montréal (St-Thomas-Aquinas) Outremont (Ste-Madeleine)
Montréal (La Nativité-de-la-Bienheureuse-Vierge-Marie) Montréal (St-Irénée) Montréal (St-Joseph-de-Bordeaux)
Rivière-Beaudette St-Grégoire (Nicolet) St-Ignace-du-Lac
St-Joseph-de-Mékinac Hull (cathédrale Très-St-Rédempteur) Aylmer (St-Paul)
Buckingham Deschênes Fassett
Gatineau Hull (Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes) Hull (Servantes de Jésus-Marie)
Hull (Ste-Bernadette-Soubirous) Lac-Ste-Marie Papineauville
Pointe-Gatineau Amos (Ste-Thérèse) Campbell’s Bay
Fugèreville Guérin Guigues (St-Bruno)
Lac-Cayamant Nédelec Otter Lake (St-Charles-Borromée)
Taschereau Lac-St-Paul Montcerf
Notre-Dame-de-Laus Ste-Famille-d’Aumond Grande-Rivière
Grande-Vallée Chandler (St-Coeur-de-Marie)  

The Drouin Collection Records contain all of the parish registers (baptisms, marriages, burials) available on Genealogy Quebec, which represents over 5 million images.


Sherbrooke parish register image from the Drouin Collection Record available on GenealogyQuebec.com.

This collection is home to all of Quebec’s parish registers from 1621 to the 1940s, as well as numerous parish registers from Ontario, New Brunswick, the United States and Acadia.

You may browse the Drouin Collection Records with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec at this address.

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

New archival fonds available on Genealogy Quebec! 8,190 historical photos

A new archival fonds is now available in the Drouin Miscellaneous Collections, one of the 15 tools offered to GenealogyQuebec.com subscribers.

Roland-Maynard Fonds – Archives and historical photos

The Roland-Maynard Fonds is an archive containing some 8,190 photos and documents of historical and genealogical significance.

It can be browsed in the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections tool at this address (subscription required), under the “14 – Fonds d’archives/” folder.

The Drouin Miscellaneous Collections tool is also home to a variety of historical documents and archives such as old newspapers, judicial and municipal archives, digitized photos, and more! A true goldmine for those with a passion for history.

Drouin Institute blog

In case you missed it, here is Marielle Côté-Gendreau’s most recent article, which deals with the the impact of the calendar on the first names of your ancestors: From Pascal to Noël: The impact of the calendar on your ancestors’ names

Genealogy and history fans should find plenty to read on the Drouin Institute’s blog. Here are some of our best articles:

The Drouin Institute’s blog is also home to many tutorials and guides pertaining to GenealogyQuebec.com and PRDH-IGD.com, which are must-reads if you are to make the most of the websites.

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

From Pascal to Noël: The impact of the calendar on your ancestors’ names

In French Canada, the religious calendar punctuates daily life until the 20th century. This influence is also conspicuous in the first names given to children.

The baptisms recorded in Quebec between 1621 and 1849, available on PRDH-IGD, account for this phenomenon. Christmas babies named NoëlNoëlla or Marie-Noëlle are the best-known example. This blog post will track religious and other seasonal events in French Canada via baptismal records.

The year begins with a very appropriate name: unsurprisingly, half of baby boys named Janvier between 1621 and 1849 are baptized in January. The Three Kings’ Day, or Epiphany, also leaves its mark as 22% of children named Épiphane or Épiphanie are baptized within two days of January 6th.


A search for Épiphane / Épiphanie on PRDH-IGD.com, with the early January baptisms highlighted. 

Lent, which spans from Ash Wednesday to Holy Saturday, and Eastertide, which lasts until Pentecost, are of great importance in the catholic calendar. As a result, 43% of Pascals are born in March or April. It is customary that marriages are not allowed during Lent. “Dispensations from the prohibited time” have to be delivered by the bishop.

The analysis of French-Canadian baptisms highlights a few changes in the catholic calendar. For example, Saint Benedict’s Day is celebrated on July 11th since the Second Vatican Council. However, it is on March 21st that Benedict of Nursia is commemorated in French Canada, and 21% of Benoîts (French form of Benedict) are baptized within two days of this date.

The effect is also perceptible for very common names, like Jean-Baptiste, inherited from John the Baptist, who is the patron saint of French Canadians since 1908. However, the celebrations of the Saint-Jean-Baptiste, Saint John’s Day, which coincide with the summer solstice, date way further back. The Jesuit Relations report a ‘Saint John’s fire’ in Quebec as early as the night of June 23rd, 1636. This feast bears a political meaning in Quebec since at least the 19th century. On June 24th, 1834, the patriotic song Ô Canada! Mon pays, mes amours (‘O Canada! my country, my loves’) is performed for the first time. It should not be confused with current Canadian anthem O Canada, although it was also composed for Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day as a French-Canadian patriotic song a few decades later, in 1880. Jean-Baptiste is a common first name all year long, but a peak is observed in the days surrounding June 24th.

A more surprising finding is the concentration of Augustins in the month of August. This phenomenon, which is not of religious origin, rather arises from the etymological link between the month of August (août in French) and Augustin, which both derive from latin augustus. 12% of Augustins are born during that month. This proportion reaches 22% in the French-Canadian elite, such as seigneurs, lawyers, notaries, doctors as well as merchants, for example. The father’s profession can be found on most baptismal records. When provided, this information is generally indicated on the record certificates available on PRDH-IGD (What is PRDH-IGD?).


PRDH-IGD baptism certificate of an Augustin born in August. Note that the father is a judge.

All Saints’ Day, celebrated on November 1st, also yields a French name, Toussaint (literally ‘All saints’). The five-day period around this date groups one third of all 4279 Toussaints born in Quebec between 1621 and 1849. The influence of the religious calendar on first names is not specific to French Canada: it is also visible among French pioneers. For example, Toussaint Giroux, from whom most Giroux descend, was baptized on November 2nd, 1633 in Réveillon, in the Perche region.


Toussaint Giroux’s individual file on PRDH-IGD.com

All Saints’ Day paves the way for several major feasts during the months of November and December, which mark the end of the agricultural activities.

Martin is another fairly common first name that draws a large proportion of baptisms to its feast: 21%. Saint Martin’s Day, celebrated on November 11th, is indeed an important day in the religious as well as the agricultural calendar. Lionel Groulx, an important priest and historian, reports in Chez nos ancêtres (‘In our ancestors’ homes’, 1920) a custom that would take place on Saint Martin’s day in many seigneuries. As the harvest is over, land tenants must visit the seigneur in his manor house and pay their annual dues. The event is also described in Philippe Aubert de Gaspé’s Les anciens canadiens, known as one of the first novels of Quebec.

Just like Jean-BaptisteCatherine is a very popular first name influenced by the feast day of its patron saint: over 5% of baptisms are concentrated in a five-day period around November 25th, an important religious and cultural celebration since the time of New France. The famous St. Catherine’s Taffy, which is attributed to saint Marguerite Bourgeoys, a prominent figure in the early development of Montreal, is prepared on that day. This French-Canadian culinary tradition still persists today.

Noël and its derivatives are the archetype of calendar names: almost 40% of 3395 baptisms are celebrated within two days of Christmas. The year comes to an end with Saint Sylvester’s Day, or New Year’s Eve, which sees the birth of 43% of Sylvestres of the time.

Proportion of baptisms in the vicinity of the date associated with a few first names in the baptismal records on PRDH-IGD.com

 

Name Day Proportion of baptisms within a five-day interval (%) * Number of baptisms
Janvier January 49.3 452
Épiphan(i)e January 6th 22.0 162
Agathe February 5th 5.4 3 541
Scholastique February 10th 6.0 2 741
Valentin February 14th 29.3 165
Patrice March 17th 22.8 631
Patrick 6.5 1 981
Benoît March 21st 21.1 690
Pascal March and April 43.2 2 558
(Jean) Baptiste June 24th 2.9 53 506
Augustin August 12.0 11 371
Michel(le) September 29th 10.0 17 310
Rémi October 1st 7.2 1 445
Thérèse October 15th 3.1 9 222
Ursule October 21st 3.9 4 499
Toussaint November 1st 29.9 4 279
Martin November 11th 21.3 1 255
Cécile November 22nd 6.5 3 444
Catherine November 25th 5.4 20 718
André November 30th 4.0 7 645
(François) Xavier December 3rd 4.1 17 019
Noël and derivatives December 25th 38.9 3 395
Étienne December 26th 6.2 9 088
Sylvestre December 31st 42.6 295
* In the case of first names referring to a month, the number in this column indicates the percentage of baptisms recorded during that month.This exercise, conducted with the exceptionally well-preserved data of the Drouin Collection Records, indexed on Genealogy Quebec and PRDH-IGD, sheds light on the influence of the calendar on given names. By paying renewed attention to the link between names and dates of birth, you will probably also be able to make sense of the names of some of your ancestors.

Marielle Côté-Gendreau

102 000 new baptism, marriage and burial files from Quebec and Ontario on Genealogy Quebec!

New baptism, marriage and burial cards are now available under the “Fonds Fabien” folder in the BMD Cards collection, available to GenealogyQuebec.com subscribers.

This update adds some 102 000 cards from Ontario and the Outaouais region of Quebec to the collection.
They relate to baptism, marriage and burial records and generally include the name of the subject(s) and their parents as well as the date and the place of registration of the event.

The cards are sorted in a file tree structure under the surname of the subject (the baptized, the deceased, or the groom in the case of marriages).

In many cases, it is possible to find the original parish record on which a card is based using the Drouin Collection Records, also available on Genealogy Quebec.

To illustrate the process, let us find the original record related to this card, which pertains to Patrick Nagh and Albertine Ménard’s marriage :


In the Fonds Fabien cards, a lone “J.” is used in place of the name Joseph, as is the case here for Albertine’s father.

The Drouin Collection Records contain all of Quebec’s parish registers from 1621 to the 1940s as well as many parish registers from Ontario, with an emphasis on those near the border between Quebec and Ontario.

Patrick Nagh and Albertine Ménard’s marriage card indicates that the marriage was celebrated in St-François d’Assise Parish in Ottawa, which happens to be one of the Ontario parishes available in the Drouin Collection Records.

To browse this register, we must first make our way to the Drouin Collection Records (subscription required).

Once in the Drouin Collection Records, you will notice that the various registers are organized in a file tree structure. We begin by opening the Ontario folder, as the marriage we are interested in was recorded in that province. Following that, we must locate the St-François d’Assise parish.

Some parishes are listed under the name of the city they are located in, while others will be listed under the name of the parish itself. In the case of Ottawa’s parishes, they are listed under the city’s name.


St-François d’Assise is found under the Ottawa folder.

Once inside the correct folder, we must navigate to the right year, which will give us access to all the images associated with the register for that specific year. It is important to know that in general, the images are listed in chronological order.
This means that the first image in the folder will contain the first events recorded during that year, which are usually the ones from January. Similarly, the last few images in the folder will hold the records from the end of the year.

Since Patrick Nagh and Albertine Ménard’s marriage was celebrated on the 3rd of April, it’s likely that the marriage record will be found among the first few images.

And so, we were able to find the original document pertaining to a Fonds Fabien card using the tools available on GenealogyQuebec.com.

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

New records from New Brunswick and the State of New York now available on Genealogy Quebec!

New records are now available on GenealogyQuebec.com! These new documents, from the State of New York and the province of New Brunswick, can be browsed in the Drouin Collection Records.

American records

New American records can now be found in the Drouin Collection Records, a collection that contains over 5 million images of various records and registers from Canada and the United States.

Civil War Veterans 1890

These records from the State of New York are part of the 1890 American census. More specifically, the records are from the Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties.

The images contain a list of civil war veterans and their widows and include various informations such as the rank, company and the date of enlistment.

Here are the 157 locations covered in this collection :

Adams Adams Township Alexandria Alexandria Township
Altona Amanda Steamberge Antwerp Ausable
Bangor Beaver Falls Beekmantown Bellmont
Black Brook Brandon Brighton Brownville
Brownville Township Burke Cadyville Canton
Canton Township Cape Vincent Township Carthage Champion
Champlain Chateaugay Chateaugay Village Chazy
Chesterfield Clayton Clifton and Clare Clinton
Clintonville Colton Croghan Croghan Township
Crown Point Dannemora Dekall Denmark
Depeyster Diana Township Dickinson Duane
Edwards Elizabethtown Ellenburg Ellenburg Township
Ellisburgh Essex Fine Fort Covington
Fowler Fowler Township Franklin Gouverneur
Gouverneur Village Greig Hammond Harrietstown
Harrisburgh Township Henderson Hermon Highmarket
Hogansburgh Hopkinton Houndsfield Jay
Kenn Lawrence Leray Lewis
Lisbon Lisbon Township Lorraine Louisville
Lowville Lyme Township Lyon Mountain Lyonsdale
Macomb Macomb Township Madrid Maira
Malone Malone Township Malone Village Martinsburgh
Massena Montague Mooers Moriah
Morrisonville Morristown New Bremen Newcomb
Norfolk Norfolk Township North Elba North Hudson
Norwood Village Ogdensburg Olmstead Orleans
Osceola Oswegatchie Oswegatchie Township Pamelia
Parishville Peru Philadelphia Pierrepont
Pitcairn Pitcairn Township Plattsburgh Plattsburgh Township
Port Henry Potsdam Potsdam Township Potsdam Village
Présentation Puickney Richville Rodinan
Rosiere Rossie Russell Russell Township
Rutland Sacketts Harbor Santa Clara Saranac
Schoon Schuyler Falls St. Armand Stockholm
Theresa Theresa Township Ticonderoga Ticonderoga Village
Town of Lyme Township of Brasher Township of Constable Turin
Village of Lowville Waddington Watertown Watson
Waverly West Heyden West Turin Township Westport
Westville Willsboro Wilmington Wilna
Worth Township      

These documents can be viewed in the Drouin Collection Records under the Registres Divers / État de New York (State of New York) folder (subscription required).

More New York State records

 

3460 images covering the St. Lawrence and Clinton Counties (Canton, Hogansburg, Norfolk, Schuyler Falls and Postdam) in the State of New York are now available on Genealogy Quebec, under the “Registres Divers” folder in the Drouin Collection Records.

Source: Drouin Collection Records (Registres divers/État de New York (State of New York)/Schuyler Falls/Register of births/1931-1942/), GenealogyQuebec.com

These documents, which contain vital records as well as military archives, add to the numerous New York State records already available on Genealogy Quebec :

American Legion Births Brushton Burke
Canton (Military Records) Chasm Falls Chateaugay
Civil War Veterans 1890 Dickinson Edward (Military Records)
Edwards Fine Fine (Military Records)
Fort Covington Harrietstown Hermon
Hogansburg Hopkinton Lisbon
Lisbon Centre Macomb Madrid
Malone Massena Mineville
Morristown Norfolk Norwood
Ogdensburg Ogdensburgh Parishville
Piercefield Pierrepont Pitcairn
Port Henry Potsdam Rossie
Saranac Lake Schroon Lake Schuyler Falls
Shoen Family Bible St. Lawrence County St. Regis Falls
The Kalb Ticonderoga Trout River
Tupper Lake Waddington Westport

You can browse these documents in the Drouin Collection Records, under the Registres Divers / État de New York folder (subscription required).

New Brunswick parish registers

The St-André parish records from the second half of the 20th century have been added to the New Brunswick parish records available on Genealogy Quebec.

This register spans from 1903 to 1993 and can be found in the Drouin Collection Records, among many other New Brunswick parish registers :

Aroostook Baker-Brook Blue Bell
Clair Connors Drummond (Catholique)
Edmunston (Immaculée-Conception) Edmunston (Notre-Dame-des-Sept-Douleurs) Edmunston (Notre-Dame-du-Sacré-Coeur)
Fredericton (Ste-Anne) Grand-Sault Kedgwick
Lac-Baker Limestone Siding Maliseet
Perth-Andover Plaster Rock Red Rapids
Rivière-Verte Saint-André Saint-Basile
Sainte-Anne-de-Madawaska Saint-François-Xavier Saint-Georges
Saint-Hilaire Saint-Jacques Saint-Joseph
Saint-Léonard Saint-Léonard-Parent Saint-Léonard-Ville
Saint-Martin Saint-Quentin St-Jean-Baptiste
Tilley    

You can browse these registers in the Drouin Collection Records under the Registres paroissiaux du nord-ouest du Nouveau-Brunswick folder (subscription required).

 

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

23 historical newspapers and 30 000 memorial cards were added to Genealogy Quebec’s collections!

23 historical newspapers have been digitized and made available on GenealogyQuebec.com!

You may browse these 12 738 new images in the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections right now (subscription required).

Here are the newspapers that were added through this update.

The Quebec Gazette (1832 to 1836)
The Inquirer (Trois-Rivières) (1857 to 1863)
The Dominion Illustrated News (Montréal) (1888 to 1893)
The Canadian Jewish Review (1935 to 1939)
Paris-Canada (1884 to 1893)
Midi-Presse (Montréal) (1954)
L’Opinion Publique (Montréal) (1870 to 1874)
L’Obligation (Montréal) (1918 and 1919)
Le Semeur Canadien (Montréal) (1856 to 1861)
Le Trésor des Familles (Québec) (May 1883)
Le Progrès du Golfe (1948 to 1950)
Le National (Montréal) (1892)
Le Charivari (Québec) (1868)
Le Castor (Québec) (1879)
Le Carillon (Québec) (1879)
L’Action Canadienne (November 1915)
La Tribune Canadienne (Montréal)
La Vie Illustrée (Montréal) (1889)
La Semaine (Québec) (1895)
La Minerve (1868 and 1869)
La Chronique de la Vallée du St-Maurice (1929)
Daily Witness (Montréal) (1874 to 1879)
Commercial Gazette (Montréal) (1897)

 

To browse these papers, open the Drouin Institute Miscellaneous Collections and navigate to the “23 – Journaux anciens/” (23 – Historical newspapers/) folder.

Memorial cards

30 000 memorial cards were added to the Obituary section on GenealogyQuebec.com, adding to the 62 500 cards already available in the section.


Memorial cards search engine from GenealogyQuebec.com

Memorial cards can be searched by name, first name and date.

The Obituary section, one of 15 tools available to Genealogy Quebec subscribers, is home to most obituary, memorial card and headstone picture available on the website:

  • 2.3 million Canadian obituaries from various online sources, spanning from 1999 to today
  • 663 000 obituaries from Quebec newspapers published between 1860 and today
  • 611 000 indexed headstone pictures from 830 cemeteries located in Quebec and Ontario
  • 92 500 memorial cards from various locations in Quebec

The Obituary section can be browsed with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec at this address.

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

LAFRANCE update: Original church records for Quebec’s 1918 marriages and 4500 BMD records from Ontario!

New church records are now available in the LAFRANCE, one of 15 tools available to GenealogyQuebec.com subscribers.

Original church records for Quebec’s 1918 Catholic marriages now viewable in the LAFRANCE

In June 2019, all of Quebec’s Catholic marriages from 1918 were imported into the LAFRANCE. However, the link to the image of the parish document had yet to be added to the record certificates. Today’s update added this link, allowing you to view the original parish document with a single click.


Click on the link at the top right of the certificate to view the original parish document


Record certificate and original parish document from GenealogyQuebec.com‘s LAFRANCE

Ontario baptism, marriage and burial records in the LAFRANCE

We are happy to announce that we have begun indexing the parish registers of Ontario, more specifically the parishes that border the province of Quebec, as many French Canadian families settled in that region. These records will be added to the LAFRANCE gradually as they are indexed by our team.

The following parishes have been partially added as of now:

  • Alexandria: 1835 to 1861, 3135 records, mostly baptisms
  • Corkery: 1837 to 1861, 959 records, mostly baptisms
  • Embrun: 1858 to 1861, 194 records, mostly baptisms
  • LaPasse: 1851 to 1861, 408 records, baptisms, marriages and burials

What is the LAFRANCE?

The LAFRANCE, one of 15 tools available to GenealogyQuebec.com subscribers, is a detailed index with link to the original document of ALL Catholic marriages celebrated in Quebec between 1621 and 1918, ALL Catholic baptisms and burials recorded in Quebec between 1621 and 1861 as well as ALL Protestant marriages celebrated in Quebec between 1760 and 1849.


LAFRANCE search engine

You can learn more about the LAFRANCE in this blog article.

 

 

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

Understanding the linguistic variation in your ancestors’ names

Your genealogical research might have left you with the impression that your ancestors liked to change names quite often. The concept of “dit names”, which was the subject of a previous blog post, sheds light on a part of this variation, which can be obscure to a present-day observer.

Although baptism was the cornerstone of civil identity in French Canada for four centuries, this identity was not, until the beginning of the 20th century, as constraining as it is today. It was not usual for an individual to use different first and last names in the course of a lifetime. This phenomenon is fostered by the orthographic instability of proper names, the flexibility of the civil registration system as well as illiteracy.

This article offers some tips to keep in mind in order to locate all the occurrences of your ancestors in the archives.

Do not cross without looking both ways – A name may hide another! 

Do not rely on spelling

This tip may seem trivial to experienced genealogists, but it is a very handy one. For example, the ancestor of the Hétu family would spell his name Estur. The silent ‹ s › and ‹ r › were orthographic relics, for which the French language is renowned. The ‹ h › was added over the years as an ornamental letter.

Orthographic variation should not be systematically attributed to illiteracy, as evidenced by the Hénault family. Four members of this educated and wealthy family signed, in 1816, the marriage record of Honoré Hénault and Julienne Mailloux and spelled their last name three different ways: Hénault, Heneault and Eno. The priest chose the unaccented variant Henault.

Honoré Henault and Julienne Mailloux’s marriage record – Source: Record 2352319, LAFRANCE, GenealogyQuebec.com

Before standardization of proper names, their spelling would be determined to some extent by the whims of the priest, the notary and the individual him or herself.

Keep in mind that language changes

Most Dions are patronymic descendants of pioneer Jean Guyon. How is that possible? First, note that Guyon is pronounced Guee-yon and not Gu-yon. Nowadays, hard ‹ g › is articulated at the velum while ‹ d › is articulated behind the upper front teeth. However, in the past, ‹ g ›, when followed by a vowel pronounced from the front of the mouth like ‹ ee ›, tended to move forward. This linguistic process induced a shift from Guyon to Dion.

Guyot, which derives from the first name Guy just like Guyon, went through a parallel transformation and gave birth to Diotte. However, some names went the opposite way: Pierre Andiran is the ancestor of all Languirands.

Similarly, the Chiasson and Giasson families share the same origin. Only the vibration of the vocal folds in the onset of the word separates those two names. In the absence of a fixed spelling, this phonetic feature was likely to fluctuate across regions, time periods and individuals. Like Guyon and Dion, these two names are two sides of the same coin.

Vowels are also impacted by linguistic change. Maybe you will be surprised to learn that most Harveys from Quebec did not receive their name from an Anglo-Saxon immigrant. It rather comes from the name Hervé.

Be on the lookout for deleted or added sounds

The absence of a strict orthographic norm when it comes to proper nouns opens the door to oral variation. Certain sounds and syllables have a natural tendency to appear or disappear according to their position in the word.

One reason for adding segments is the introduction of definite articles lela and l’(the) in front of last names: it was usual to call people le Gagnonla Corriveau (a famous folkloric and historical figure) or l’Andiran. Reinterpretation of this structure in a merged form completes the shift from Andiran to Languirand.

Now, pronounce Reguindeau (Ruh-guin-do) out loud, then Reyindeau (Ruh-yin-do). You will probably notice the similarity between the two forms, and how easy it is to go from one to the other. The change from hard ‹ g › to ‹ y › is an example of palatalization. English yellow is linked to German gelb through the same process. You might have recognized the French-Canadian last name Riendeau (Ryin-do), inherited from Joachim Reguindeau from La Rochelle, France.

The pioneer François Amirault dit Tourangeau offers another example of deletion: most of his patronymic descendants use the name Mireault or an orthographic variant. The reverse phenomenon can also be found as the female first name Zélie produced Azélie.

The alternation between first names that are essentially distinguished by a few additional sounds can be found without regard for etymological cognateness. In French Canada, Élisabeth and its ancient derivative Isabelle behaved as two variants of the same name until the 19th century. However, Domitille & Mathilde, Jérémie & Rémi, Apolline & Pauline as well as Napoléon, Paul & Léon are not related.

Detect shared consonants, vowels and syllables

 Beyond truncated segments, some names share more subtle similarities that explain why they have often been mixed up, or even used interchangeably.

Apolline & Hippolyte, Jérémie & Germain, Mathilde & Martine as well as Alice & Élise illustrate this phenomenon. In other cases, the similarities seem even more tenuous. It is improbable that a present-day genealogist would spontaneously perceive a link between Angélique, Julie and Judith. Yet records show that these three first names have often been used alternately.

All of the appearances of Marie Angélique (Judith, Julie) Desgranges in the PRDH-IGD.com records, illustrating the interchangeability of these first names throughout the records.

Focus on the most distinctive part

 A first name with a rare ending is susceptible to be substituted with other names that share the same characteristic. It is the case of David & Ovide or Stanislas & Wenceslas.

The most distinctive part of a first name, or even a last name, sometimes acts as a nucleus that can be completed with a variety of prefixes and suffixes. Thus, Rose generates Rosalie, Rosanna, Rosina and Rosa. The female first names structured around the nucleus ‹ del › provide another example. By varying starts and endings, this group includes Adèle, Adélaïde, Adeline, Délie, Délina, Délia, Délima, Odeline and even Odile, which are not all etymologically related but came to sound alike and sometimes be used alike.

Similarly, it is not surprising that Brunet is occasionally substituted with Bruneau or Brunel, and Gendreau may alternate with Gendron.

Know the first name combinations inspired by the saints

 To shed light on this last type of variation, religion rather than linguistics comes in handy. Some saints’ and blesseds’ names are composed of several parts, with Jean Baptiste (John the Baptist) being the most well-known. An individual may use one part or another. Thus, Rose de Lima (Rose of Lima) paves the way for Rose and its sisters Rosalie, Rosanna, Rosa, as well as Délima and even Délina.

François Xavier (Francis Xavier), Jean François Régis (John Francis Regis), Jeanne Françoise Frémyot de Chantal (Jane Frances de Chantal) and Marie des Anges (Mary of the Angels), among others, also open the door to alternation between their parts.

The resemblance function in the LAFRANCE and on PRDH-IGD.com

 The resemblance (or likeliness) function available on the search engines of both PRDH-IGD and GenealogyQuebec.com‘s LAFRANCE will neutralize some of this variation, making genealogical research easier.

PRDH-IGD.com search engine with the Likeness function activated

For example, searching for “Mathilde” will generate a list containing women named Mathilde, Domitille, Martine, Donatille, Mélitime, Métheldée and Militilde, with their various spellings.

 

Marielle Côté-Gendreau

More additions to the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections and new LAFRANCE feature

Over 10 000 images of historical and genealogical significance have been added to the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections recently. These can be browsed with a subscription to GenealogyQuebec.com.

Archival fonds

You will find, in the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections (more information), a folder titled Fonds d’archives (Archival fonds), containing the genealogical and historical archives of several collaborators of the Drouin Institute. These archives contain documents of all kinds; family genealogies, photos of individuals, buildings and streets, digitizations of historical works, family histories, maps, as well as many other types of documents and archives.

It is truly a gold mine of information and documents for Quebec history and genealogy enthusiasts. This most recent update pertains to the André-Hurtubise, Gaston-Dupuis and Yvan-Beaulieu Fonds. You can consult them in the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections under the “14 – Fonds d’archives” folder.

Other documents

Some 2000 images were also added in the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections, under the “18 – Autres documents” (Other documents) folder.

These folders contain the archives of notary Joseph Dionne dating from between 1741 and 1779 (Dionne_Joseph_1741-1779 folder), as well as a book about the descendants of Guillaume Roux, authored by Sylvain Croteau and André Roux (ROUX_Descendants_of_Guillaume folder).

Comments on the LAFRANCE

A comment field has been added to the LAFRANCE certificates, in which you will find complementary information related to the record. These comments are added by our team during the indexing process of the records. The comment field may be used, for example, to highlight a mistake made by the priest in the record.

Example of a certificate with comment, from GenealogyQuebec.com’s LAFRANCE

The comment field may also be used to bring attention to various details in the record, such as an unusual cause of death.

The LAFRANCE is an index with a link to the original document of ALL Catholic baptisms and burials recorded in Quebec between 1621 and 1861, as well as ALL Catholic marriages celebrated in Quebec between 1621 and 1918. In addition, ALL Protestant marriages recorded in Quebec between 1760 and 1849 are also available on the LAFRANCE.
You can start using the LAFRANCE today by subscribing to Genealogy Quebec!

BMD Cards

In order to facilitate browsing and searching on GenealogyQuebec.com, the Kardex and Loiselle File have been merged into a single collection, BMD Cards, containing baptism, marriage and burial cards from Quebec, Ontario and the United States.

In addition to the Kardex and Loiselle files, this collection contains Ontario BMD cards, BMD cards sorted by cities or families, and death cards organized by family name, provided by the Quebec Family History Society.

You can browse this collection with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec at this address.

New articles on the Drouin Institute blog

The PRDH website is celebrating its 20th anniversary, by François and Bertrand Desjardins

 

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

BMD Cards (Baptisms, Marriages, Burials)

The BMD Cards tool is a repository of baptism, marriage and burial cards from Quebec, Ontario and the United States.

This tool contains the “Antonin Loiselle” and “Kardex” collections, as well as Ontario BMD cards, BMD cards sorted by cities or families, and death cards organized by family name, provided by the Quebec Family History Society.

The Loiselle File

The Loiselle File is a collection of marriage files produced by priest Antonin Loiselle as part of his personal research. In total, this collection contains 1 044 434 marriage files that pertain to about 100 different parishes.

The tool covers all of Quebec as well as Fall River, MA and Manchester, NH from 1621 to the mid 20th century.

The Loiselle File is navigated similarly to the Drouin Collection Records. The documents are organized in a file tree containing over 16 000 folders. Within these folders, the files are sorted by alphabetical order of the husband and wife’s first name. A search for Abraham will be conducted within the first few files, while a search for Zenophile should be done towards the end of the folder.

The marriage files contain the following information: first and last name of the husband and wife, last name of the parents or of the previous spouse. In most cases, a date and location will be given for the marriage. Additional information may also be present, such as the residence of the the spouses or the parents.

The Kardex

The Kardex is a directory of marriage files complementary to the Men and Women series. The files pertain to Catholic and Protestant marriages as well as to notarized documents.

The Kardex covers from 1621 to around 1950 for Quebec, Ontario as well as a small part of the United States.

The Kardex is navigated similarly to the Drouin Collection Records. The documents are organized in a file tree.

The Kardex marriage files contain the following information: the name and first name of the spouses, the name of the parents, or the name of the previous spouse.

In most cases, the date and location of the marriage may also be included. Additional information may also be present in the file.

To better understand the structure of the Kardex files, here is an example:

  1. Bertrand, Joseph Alfred Émile – Husband
  2. (Bertrand), Antoine Wilfrid – Father of the husband
  3. St-Aubin, Rose Anna – Mother of the husband
  4. Michaud, Marie Lise Irène – Wife
  5. (Michaud), Joseph Adolphe – Father of the wife
  6. Bernard, Marie Lise Elisa – Mother of the wife
  7. St Louis de France de Montréal – Parish in which the marriage was celebrated
  8. 12 Juin 1915 – Marriage date

 

You can use the Kardex with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec at this address.