Announcing the contest winners and 60% off the Drouin Institute online boutique!

It is now time to announce the 10 winners of the genealogy raffle launched on February 22, 2021, in which you could win an annual subscription to Genealogy Quebec1,000 hits on or $ 200 on our online boutique!

The winners are:

Lisa Guindon
Michel Néron
André Coulombe
Sylvie Houle
Jean Leclerc
Guillaume Boissonneault
Nathalie Lagassé
Gaston Moore
Audrey Champagne
Rachel Bouffard

A big thank you to our 4,410 participants!

60% off on the Drouin Institute online boutique

If you aren’t one of our 10 lucky winners, we still want to give you an opportunity to save money! Enjoy 60% off all purchases on the Drouin Institute boutique with the code DROUIN2021! This offer is valid until March 15th, 2021.

To benefit from this promotion, simply enter the code DROUIN2021 on checkout.

The Drouin Institute online boutique includes all the books and CD-ROMs produced by the Drouin Institute, more than 4,000 items. The boutique is also home to various directories and books from historical and genealogical societies across Quebec, Ontario and the United States.

You may use the search function to find books pertaining to a specific region, family, individual or subject.

Here are some of the collections available on the boutique.

Patrimoine familial (Family Heritage)

This collection presents some of Quebec’s most notable historical figures and details their genealogy and family history.

Patrimoine national (National Heritage)

The Patrimoine national (National Heritage) collection contains various directories of parish records, cemeteries, death notices, memorial cards, censuses and more.

Livres divers (Miscellaneous books)

Contains various books and directories from the Drouin Institute as well as genealogical societies from Quebec, Ontario and New England.

Again, thank you for your participation and your confidence.

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

Getting started guide

Welcome to Genealogy Quebec!

On the site, you will find over 47 million images and files that will allow you to retrace the history of your family in Quebec and the surrounding area. These documents are divided into several tools. In order to get the most out of the website, it is important to know which tool to refer to depending on the nature of your research.

Your first search on Genealogy Quebec

Whether you are looking for a particular individual or want to trace an entire line, your first search on the site will probably be on the LAFRANCE.

The LAFRANCE contains millions of births, marriages and deaths from Quebec, Ontario and Acadia from 1621 to the present day. It is with these records, and especially marriages, that you will be able to trace your ancestry.

Tracing a lineage on Genealogy Quebec

You will begin by finding a marriage belonging to the lineage on the LAFRANCE. If you are looking for your own lineage, your parents, grandparents or great-grandparents’ marriage is a good place to start.

In a marriage record, you will generally find the names of the parents of the spouses. By searching for the parents’ names in the LAFRANCE, you should be able to find their marriage and, as such, go back one generation in the line. Thus, you can trace an entire lineage through the chain of marriages of the individuals forming it.

The names of the groom’s parents are listed in the marriage on the left. Searching for them in the LAFRANCE allows us to find their marriage. By repeating the process, we can go back to the first immigrant of a lineage in Quebec.

You will find a guide detailing this process at this address.

Tip: Can’t find the marriage you are looking for? Try limiting your search queries to the last names of the spouses, or try different variations of the search such as the first name of the husband and the last name of the wife, or the last name of the husband and the first name of the wife. By doing so, you limit the risk of the record being excluded from the results of your search, which can occur when one of the search queries does not match the information contained in the document.

Advanced search and other types of documents

In addition to its collections of births, marriages and deaths, Genealogy Quebec offers a multitude of tools containing documents of all sorts.

For example, all obituaries, tombstones and memorial cards on the site can be found in the Obituary collection.

Genealogy Quebec also allows you to search for births, marriages and deaths that may not be listed in LAFRANCE by using the Connolly File, NBMDS, and BMD Cards collections.

You can find a detailed list of the tools and their content on the Tools page.

Tip: We recommend that you keep your searches vague, and refine them if necessary by adding one piece of information at a time. When the first or last name you are looking for is unusual, it is seldom necessary to add more information to a search.

The more detailed a search, the more likely it is to omit the result you are looking for, as all the search queries must match the document. For example, your first search could start with the last names of the spouses. If the number of results is too high, you may add an additional variable such as a first name or a year.

Additional documentation and tutorials

Genealogy Quebec user guide

Establishing your ancestry using Genealogy Quebec

Tool specific guides

Using the LAFRANCE
Using the Marriages and Deaths 1926-1997
Using the Obituary section
Using the Drouin Institute’s Great Collections
Using the Petit NBMDS tool
Using the Connolly File
Using the Drouin Family Genealogies
Using the Census tool
Using the Notarized documents tool
Using the Post cards tool
Using the Acadia – Families tool
Using the Drouin Collection Records
Using the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections
Using the BMD cards
Using the City Directories

Research help

For questions regarding the use of the site, you can contact us at

For research questions, you can also call on our community on the Genealogy Quebec Forum*.

* Please note that you will need to create an account directly on the forum in order to participate.

Best of luck in your research and enjoy the website!

The omission of women in family trees – Part 2

(This is a 3 part article. Click to read: Part 1, Part 3)

In my previous article, I demonstrated that women are often forgotten in genealogical research: patrilineal lineages are prevalent (Jetté, 1991: 110 ; Drouin, 2015) and women’s presence is often  made invisible through the vocabulary used (Cousteau Serdongs, 2008 : 133). This problem is anchored in the patriarchal organization of our society as well as in the reproduction of sexism in genealogical practices. We will now detail the consequences of this omission and the reasons why this problem deserves our attention.

The omission of women in the construction of genealogical lineages is part of a system of erasure and devaluation of women’s accomplishments, as well as appropriation and control of their work and bodies. The consequences are very concrete. Francine Cousteau Serdongs points out that “the lack of knowledge of women’s history from women of one’s own lineage makes it impossible to identify with them [1](2008: 138). It might also make it more difficult to identify what shaped one’s family and the role gender played in its formation. Patriarchal values (such as imperatives imposed on women’s appearances or behaviors) are reproduced not only in the public space, but also in the private space as they are often transmitted to children from an early age.

Not knowing about the history of women in our family can prevent us from understanding generational traumas or gendered perspectives as an essential part of our familial dynamic and culture. A better understanding of those issues would certainly play an important role in the deconstruction of patriarchal schemes transmitted in the family and in the consolidation of solidarity between women (Cousteau Serdongs, 2008: 138).

Four generations in one picture, Wikimedia Commons.

The erasure of women in genealogy also tends to go hand in hand with their erasure in the great History. Francine Cousteau Serdongs gives many examples of that phenomenon (2008: 135-136). She mentions the women on the Grande recrue ship and the spouses of famous men, like Charles Le Moyne. This invisibility certainly plays a role in the devaluation of women’s roles and work that is still going on today in our society: if we can’t recognize women’s past realizations, why would we be able to recognize present ones?

Charles Le Moyne and Catherine Primot’s marriage. Source: Record 47196, LAFRANCE,

When we neglect mothers in genealogical research, we also devalue their role and we negate their implication in passing on the heritage, while men, because they pass on their last name, are an obvious part of one’s lineage (Cousteau Serdongs, 2008: 132). To quote Francine Cousteau Serdongs: “In the second generation, women are ignored, allegedly because they don’t have the same last name. Everything happens as if women didn’t have a lineage of their own but were simply helping their spouse have one” (2008: 133). Symbolically, this perpetuates a representation of women as “objects” with no agency (Cousteau Serdongs, 2008: 139-140), when in reality, women were playing an essential and active role in their family and their society.

It is true that women have historically been relegated to reproduction and the private sphere. They were kept out of the public space: the places where decisions were made and power was held. We can find traces of this private/public division since ancient Greece and despite the recent feminist progress, in some ways, it is still accurate today (see Bereni and Revillard, 2009). But even if women were locked up in the private sphere, it was not really a place for them to lead either. Patriarchal values continually dictated how women should act, even in private spaces. Medicalization of pregnancy and childbirth, the imperatives about how they should raise their children and clean their houses and the restrictions concerning abortion are all glaring examples of the way women’s work (including their work with children) is controlled and appropriated by men (see Cousteau Serdongs, 2008: 141-142 or Guillaumin, 1978).

Painting of a woman doing laundry

As if it wasn’t enough, the private sphere has also been devalued (see Robert, 2017). The fact that women have been prohibited from giving their last names to their children for a very long time and that even today, we rarely allow them to appear in familial histories contribute to this appropriation of women’s work by men as well as in the patriarchal control and devaluation of the private sphere.

These consequences are even more important for racialized women, who are at the intersection of multiple oppression systems such as racism and sexism. For indigenous women, the erasure of their role in familial history meant the loss of their “Indian status” when they married a non-indigenous man. Their children couldn’t get the status either. This often meant being deprived of certain political, cultural, and social rights and often losing access to their community (see Arnaud, 2014: 213-217). The C-31 law, voted in 1985, allowed women who lost their status because of their marriage to a non-indigenous person to get it back, but their children could only get a non-transmissible status, unlike the children of indigenous fathers. It would take 25 years for this disposition of the law to be changed (Arnaud, 2014: 216). These simple changes in the law were not even enough to give their communities back to these women and children: the communities were lacking space and money and received no support at all to welcome back these people. Women were perceived badly, as if they were upsetting the established order and forcing the hand of their communities: this issue has yet to be resolved.

Native women with their children, Vancouver, 1901, Wikimedia Commons

(Trigger warning: mention of rape in the next paragraph.)

This conception of women as carriers of men’s lineages also contributed to the imposition of chastity and fidelity standards which were used to ensure the identity of a child’s father (Knibiehler, 2012). Outside of Quebec, rape has been used as a weapon of war in many contexts. Women’s bodies were used to “tarnish genealogical lineages” and punish certain peoples. To quote Véronique Nahoum-Grappe, talking about ex-Yugoslavia “rape became, some sort of a victory on war’s front against the collective identity of the enemy, a victorious invasion of their reproductive space” (1996, 153). While, to my knowledge, events of this sort have not been documented during Quebec’s colonization, it is still very possible they happened. In 2014, Statistics Canada reported that indigenous women were three times more likely to be a victim of sexual assault than non-indigenous women (Boyce, 2014).

In conclusion, the omission of women in genealogy contributes to a patriarchal culture which erases and devalues women’s accomplishments as well as the oppression they live under within their societies and families. It also contributes to the appropriation and control of their work and bodies. It is urgent that we find ways to change this situation and work towards a society in which we can all be equals: my next article will detail how we can achieve this in the field of genealogy.

Audrey Pepin


[1] Quotes which were originally in French have been translated by the author of this article


Arnaud, Aurélie. (2014). Féminisme autochtone militant : quel féminisme pour quelle militance? Nouvelles pratiques sociales, vol. 27, no. 1, p.211-222.

Baillargeon, Denyse. Compte-rendu de Yvonne Knibiehler, La virginité féminine. Mythes, fantasmes, émancipation. Paris , Odile Jacob, 2012 221 p. Recherches féministes, vol. 25, no. 2, p.191-193.

Bereni, Laure et Revillard Anne. (2009). La dichotomie “Public-Privé» à l’épreuve des critiques féministes: de la théorie à l’action publique. Dans Genre et action publique : la frontière public-privé en questions, Muller, P. et Sénac-Slawinski, R (dir.). Paris : L’Harmattan. p. 27-55.

Boyce, Jillian. (2014). La victimisation chez les Autochtones au Canada, 2014. Statistiques Canada :

Cousteau Serdongs, Francine. (2008). Le Québec, paradis de la généalogie et « re-père » du patriarcat : où sont les féministes? De l’importance d’aborder la généalogie avec les outils de la réflexion féministe. Recherches féministes vol. 21, no. 1, p.131-147.

Drouin, Mathieu. (2015). Patrilinéaire, mitochondriale et agnatique : trois façons de faire votre généalogie! Histoire Canada. Récupéré de,-mitochondriale-et-agnatique-trois-facons-de-faire-votre-genealogie!

Guillaumin, Colette. (1978). Pratique du pouvoir et idée de nature : 1- L’appropriation des femmes. Questions féministes, no.2, p.58-74.

Jetté, René. (1991). Traité de Généalogie. Montréal : Les Presses de l’Université de Montréal, 716 p.

Knibiehler, Yvonne (2012). La virginité féminine. Mythes, fantasmes, émancipation. Paris : Odile Jacob, 221 p.

Nahoum-Grappe, Véronique (1996). Purifier le lien de filiation : Les viols systématiques en ex-Yougoslavie, 1991-1995. Esprit, no. 227 (12), p.150-163.

Robert, Camille. (2017). Toutes les femmes sont d’abord ménagères. Histoire d’un combat féministe pour la reconnaissance du travail ménager. Montréal : Éditions Somme toute, Coll. « économie politique », 178 p.

Win a yearly subscription to Genealogy Quebec, 1000 PRDH-IGD hits, or $200 to spend on our online boutique! – Second edition

The Drouin Institute, in collaboration with the Fédération québécoise des sociétés de généalogie, is happy to announce the second edition of its yearly contest, in which you can win a yearly subscription to Genealogy Quebec, 1000 PRDH-IGD hits, or $200 to spend on our online boutique. Participating is free, quick and easy!

How to participate

To enter the contest, simply create or log in to a Genealogy Quebec account between February 22nd 2021 and March 8th 2021, 3:00 PM EST. You do NOT need to purchase or have an active subscription on the account to be eligible for the contest.

If you do not have an account on Genealogy Quebec, create one (no credit card required). This should take you no more than a minute.

If you already own a Genealogy Quebec account, log in to it between February 22nd 2021 and March 8th 2021, 3:00 PM EST to ensure your participation in the draw. That’s all!

10 winners will be drawn at random on March 8th 2021 at 3:00 PM EST.

Make sure the email address associated with your Genealogy Quebec account is valid!
If you are drawn as a winner, you will be contacted via that email address. You will then have 48h to claim your prize. If necessary, a second draw will take place on March 10th at 4:00 PM EST in order to allocate unclaimed prizes to new winners.

The prizes

Yearly Genealogy Quebec subscription (Can$100 value) 

An annual subscription to Genealogy Quebec gives you access to the entire website and all its tools and collections for a period of 365 days.
Genealogy Quebec is a subscription-based research website regrouping all the collections and tools developed by the Drouin Institute over the course of its existence.

The website’s 15 tools and collections amount to over 47 million images and files covering all of Quebec as well as parts of the United States, Ontario and Acadia from 1621 to this day. Genealogy Quebec is by far the largest collection of Quebec genealogical and historical documents on the Web.
You will find more information about the website on the Drouin Institute blog.

1000 PRDH-IGD hits (Can$79.99 value)

PRDH-IGD is a directory of ALL vital events (baptisms, marriages and burials) recorded by the Catholic church in Quebec and French Canada from 1621 to 1849, as well as a genealogical dictionary of families. The PRDH-IGD database contains over 2,500,000 records.

What makes PRDH-IGD unique is how these records are connected to one another through genealogical links, which we refer to as Family Reconstructions. In addition to baptism, marriage and burial files, the PRDH-IGD contains individual and family files.

Any individual mentioned in a BMD record from the database is attributed an individual file. Similarly, any married couple mentioned in a BMD record gets their own family file.

PRDH-IGD subscriptions work by using “hits”.
A “hit” is used every time a record certificate, an individual file, a family file or a couple file is viewed. The original search that leads to the result list is free. You will find more information about the structure of the database at this address.

$200 to spend on our online boutique (Can$200 value)

The Drouin Institute online boutique includes all the books and CD-ROMs produced by the Drouin Institute, more than 4,000 items. It also offers directories and books from various historical and genealogical societies in Quebec, Ontario and the United States. If you choose this prize, you will receive a credit of $200 to spend on any item(s) in the boutique.


  1. To be eligible for the draw, you must own a Genealogy Quebec account that was either created or logged in to between February 22nd 2021 and March 8th 2021, 3:00 PM EST.
  2. This contest ends on March 8th 2021, 3:00 PM EST, at which time the winners will be chosen at random.
  3. The 10 winners will be contacted by email one hour after the draw (March 8th 2021, 4:00 PM EST), and will have until March 10th 2021, 4:00 PM EST to claim their prize. Once this date has passed, the unclaimed prizes will be subject to a new draw, and can no longer be claimed by the original winners.
  4. 48 hours after the initial draw, if necessary, a new draw will be done to award the unclaimed prizes to new winners. They will also have 48 hours to claim their prize. This process will be repeated until the 10 winners have been selected and have received their prizes.
  5. The 10 winners will be announced publicly on our Facebook page and via our newsletter once the 10 prizes have been distributed.
  6. Are excluded from this contest: Any employee or representative of the Drouin Genealogical Institute and the people with whom they are domiciled. Any institutional account (library, society, museum, school, etc.).
  7. Any litigation respecting the conduct or organization of a publicity contest may be submitted to the Régie des alcools, des courses et des jeux for a ruling. Any litigation respecting the awarding of a prize may be submitted to the board only for the purpose of helping the parties reach a settlement
  8. It is prohibited to create multiple Genealogy Quebec accounts in order to increase your chances of winning the draw. Individuals creating more than one account for this purpose will be disqualified.
  9. In order to select the 10 winners, a list will be produced from those eligible for the draw. Each individual in this list will be assigned a specific number (1, 2, 3, and so on). A random number generator will be used to generate a list of 10 numbers, and the individuals associated with these numbers will be the winners of the contest.
  10. A paid subscription to Genealogy Quebec, either current or previously active, is NOT necessary to participate in this contest.

If you have any questions or need help, please contact us at


Good luck!

The Drouin team

500,000 new obituaries on Genealogy Quebec!

Over 500,000 newspaper obituaries from Ontario, Quebec and the United States have been added to the Obituary Section, one of 15 collections available to Genealogy Quebec subscribers.

Here is a list of the sources (place or publication) of these new death notices:

  • Brockville, Ontario
  • Chesterville, Morrisburg and Winchester, Ontario (mostly 2003 to 2007)
  • Evening Citizen, Ottawa, Ontario (1949)
  • Journal de Montréal, Quebec
  • Journaux de Tampa Bay, Florida (2000s)
  • Valleyfield, Quebec (2000s)
  • La Nouvelle, Ontario (2001)
  • Le Carillon d’Hawkesbury, Ontario (1980s and 1990s)
  • Le Droit d’Ottawa, Ontario (21st century)
  • Le Quotidien de Chicoutimi, Quebec (1999 to 2006)
  • Le Reflet, Lachute, Quebec
  • Massena Observer, New York (2002 to 2005)
  • Northern Times, Kapuskasing, Ontario (1990s and 2000s)
  • Ogdensburg and Watertown, New York
  • Ottawa Citizen, Ontario (1990 to 2018)
  • Cornwall Standard Freeholder, Ontario (1904 to 2017)
  • Sudbury Voyageur, Ontario (1980s, 1990s and 2000s)
  • The Glengarry News, Ontario
  • The Vision, Prescott Russell County, Ontario
  • Women Dixon Institute, Cornwall, Ontario.
  • Ontario death notices from the Cayer Collection (1960 to 2010)

These death notices are indexed by the first and last name of the subject as well as the date of death. You may browse them with a subscription to Genealogy Quebec at this address.

Please note that the original document is missing for some obituaries. The missing images will be added as soon as possible.

The Obituary section

This section contains most of the obituaries, memorial cards and headstones available on Genealogy Quebec. It is divided in 4 sub-sections:

  • Internet obituaries, which contains over 2.5 million obituaries published online from 1999 to today.
  • Newspaper obituaries, which now contains 1,250,000 newspaper obituaries published between 1860 and today.
  • Tombstones, which contains more than 710,000 pictures of headstones from hundreds of cemeteries in Quebec and Ontario.
  • Memorial cards, which contains tens of thousands of memorial cards published between 1860 and today.

These collections are indexed and can be explored using a search engine.

You may browse these documents as well as tens of millions images and files of genealogical and historical relevance by subscribing to Genealogy Quebec.

To conclude, we would like to thank Généalogie et Archives St-Laurent and particularly Norbert Lussier, who is to thank for this incredible collection of obituaries.

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

1 700 000 marriages added to Genealogy Quebec’s LAFRANCE

Over 1.7 million marriages dating from 1850 to today have been added to the LAFRANCE, one of the 15 tools available to Genealogy Quebec subscribers. These marriages were transferred from the NBMDS and Connolly File collections.

Search results from the LAFRANCE showing some of the new records

Here are the locations and periods covered by these marriages:

  • 1,450,000 Quebec Catholic marriages from 1919 to today
  • 80,926 Quebec civil marriages from 1969 to today
  • 140,000 Ontario marriages from 1850 to today
  • 38,000 marriages from the United States
  • 3,000 Quebec Protestant marriages from 1850 to 1941
  • 17,002 miscellaneous Quebec marriages from 2018 and 2019

Name standardisation and the resemblance function

The LAFRANCE has a significative advantage over the other tools available on Genealogy Quebec, as its search engine is equipped with name standardisation and the resemblance function

When searching in the LAFRANCE, name standardisation ensures that a name is associated with all of its variants. For example, a query for an individual with the surname Gauthier will prompt the search engine to look through the database for any mention of the name Gauthier as well as any of its variations, such as Gautier, Gaulthier, Gotier, etc. Thus, it isn’t necessary to manually search for multiple variants of a name when using the LAFRANCE, unlike on the NBMDS and Connolly tools.

Standardisation of the Lavoie surname in the LAFRANCE

In addition to name standardisation, the LAFRANCE is equipped with the resemblance function, which allows you to search for a name and any other name that resembles it with a single query. The resemblance function differs from name standardisation because it not only includes all of the variants of a name, but also all of the names that are similar to it in terms of pronunciation and spelling. For example, a search for Gauthier, which will include all of the variants listed earlier, will also include the names Gonthier, Vauthier, Gouthier, Authier as well as their numerous variations.


A fairly obvious benefit of adding these records to the LAFRANCE is having more documents centralized in a single tool. This allows our subscribers to carry out more efficient and rapid searches on the site, without having to jump around between collections. With that in mind, we plan to transfer a large number of documents to the LAFRANCE in the months to come.


We took the opportunity presented by this transfer of records to systematically correct them. As such, the names of the parishes associated with the records have been standardized, numerous name entry errors have been corrected, and all duplicated records have been deleted. Therefore, the copy of these records which is currently in the LAFRANCE is of much better quality than the one previously available on the website.

In conclusion, the standardisation of names, the resemblance function, and the correction and centralization of these records has made them much easier to search and access on the site.

More about the LAFRANCE

In addition to these newly added records, the LAFRANCE contains ALL of Quebec’s Catholic marriages from 1621 to 1918, ALL of Quebec’s Catholic baptisms and burials from 1621 to 1861, ALL of Quebec’s Protestant marriages from 1760 to 1849 as well as over 68 000 additional BMD records from 1861 to 2008.
You will find more information about the LAFRANCE on the Drouin Institute’s blog.

You may browse the LAFRANCE as well as tens of millions of documents of genealogical and historical significance by subscribing to Genealogy Quebec today!

Finding the original document associated with a record

For now, the marriages added to the LAFRANCE through this update are not linked to the original document from which they are sourced.
However, as a Genealogy Quebec subscriber, you have access to all of Quebec’s parish registers up to the 1940s in the Drouin Collection Records.
Therefore, you can find the original document associated with a record if it dates from before the mid-1940s.

To illustrate the process of finding a document in the Drouin Collection, we will use the marriage record of Clovis Desjardins and Corinne Dufour, celebrated in St-Sauveur-Des-Monts on February 4th, 1925.

Clovis and Corinne’s marriage as presented on the LAFRANCE

First, we head over to the Drouin Collection Records tool, where Quebec’s parish registers are located. You will notice that the registers are sorted by location. As the document we are trying to find was recorded in Quebec, it is in that folder that we will carry out our research. The collection that interests us, that is, the civil copy of all of Quebec’s parish registers up to the 1940s, is found under the Fonds Drouin folder.

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 St-Sauveur-Des-Monts, the parish and the city bear the same name.

Once inside the parish’s folder, we must navigate to the correct year, which will give us access to all the images associated with that 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 the year, which are usually the ones from January. Similarly, the last few images in the folder will be those from the end of the year.
As Clovis Desjardins and Corinne Dufour’s marriage took place early in the year in February, we can expect to find it among the first images of 1925.

And with that, we were able to find the source document associated with one of the newly added LAFRANCE marriages.

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

What connects the names Routhier and Lavallée?

There are many examples of two people teaming up to achieve something that connects their names forever : Watson and Crick (discoverers of the double helix structure of DNA), Boyle and Mariotte (co-discoverers of one of the fundamental laws of Physics which bears their names), Banting and Best (two Canadian scientists who discovered insulin), Lewis and Clark (explorers of the American frontier), Stanley and Livingstone…

Such a conjunction exists in French-Canada between Basile Routhier and Calixa Lavallée which is not all that known, although it is underlyingly present in almost every major sport event in Canada.

Calixa Lavallée (left) in 1873 and Basile Routhier (right) in 1890

Adolphe-Basile Routhier was born in St-Benoît in 1839. 9th child of a family of 12 children, he married in 1862 and died in 1920.

Family file of Charles Routhier St-Onge and Angélique Biroleau Lafleur, Basile’s parents, as seen on

His paternal ancestor, Jean-Baptiste Routhier, came from the Saint-Onge region of France as a soldier in the early 1700s.

Individual File of Jean Baptiste Routhier St-Onge, Basile’s paternal ancestor,

Lawyer, judge, professor and author, Basile Routhier was a fervent Catholic, a staunch conservative (he was twice candidate in federal elections, losing to his Liberal rival) and an ardent nationalist. During his long life, he was a prolific writer of poems, essays and journals. His career was brilliant. From 1883 to his death, he was Professor of international law at Laval University, chief justice of the Superior Court of Quebec for two years, and President of the Royal Society of Canada of which he was one of the founding members.


Calixa Lavallée was born in Verchères in 1842 and died in Boston in 1891.

His mother, Caroline Valentine, was the daughter of a Protestant Scottish trader who married a French-canadian woman.

His family name is actually a “Dit” name (a nickname); his ancestor, originating from the Luçon diocese in the Poitou region of France, Isaac-Etienne Paquet “dit” Lavallée, was a soldier of the famous Carignan regiment who fought the Iroquois from 1665 to 1668.

Individual File of Isaac Paquet, Calixa’s paternal ancestor, as seen on

Calixa Lavallée was a man of ideals and of dreams who suffered greatly from his lack of business sense; he died aged 49, away from his native land, mostly unknown and forgotten. But his great talent would prevail to insure his place in Canadian history.

It is in 1880 that fate brought together these two men of such different destinies. Both were members of the organizing committee of the National convention of the French Canadians organized by the Société St-Jean-Baptiste of the city of Quebec when the idea came up to have a sort of “national song” for the occasion, a music to which a patriotic poem could be fitted. Routhier and Lavallée immediately volunteered and eight days later, the O Canada had been created. It was first performed publicly on June 24 1880 and instantly became a great success.

When reading the complete text of Routhier, one realizes it was written as an hymn to the French-Canadians (the term “Canadien” at the time was used to designate the French-Canadians, as opposed to “Les Anglais”). Notwithstanding, an English version (not a translation but rather a completely different text fitted to the music) written in 1908 by another judge, Robert Stanley Weir, to mark the 300th anniversary of the founding of the city of Quebec, also became well known.

And the rest is history. In 1980, O Canada became the National anthem of the land, one century after its creation as a French Canadian patriotic song that brought together the names of Basile Routhier and Calixa Lavallée forever.


Bertrand Desjardins

The omission of women in family trees – Part 1

(This is a 3 part article. Click to read: Part 2, Part 3)

When starting this articles project about feminism and genealogy, I first asked myself what I could have to say about it. I had developed a certain expertise in feminist theory through my studies and activism, but I only knew genealogy from afar. Therefore, I started by doing some research in the library of my university, the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQÀM), and on the internet. I tried different keyword combinations with “genealogy”, both in English and in French: “women”, “feminism”, “patriarchy”, “sexism” …

Jean Talon, Bishop François de Laval and several settlers welcome the King’s Daughters upon their arrival, Painting by Eleanor Fortescue-Brickdale – before 1927, Library and Archives Canada

The first thing I noticed was that women, in genealogical research as in many other fields, were often left aside.

Several specialists confirmed that Quebec wasn’t an exception: according to Francine Cousteau Serdongs, who was a lecturer at UQÀM in social work and a genealogy graduate and practitioner, very few genealogists know the name of their uterine pioneer (the woman at the origin of a women lineage, traced from mother to daughter) (Cousteau Serdongs, 2008: 131). She also stressed that the terms that are used in genealogical research seem to forget about women: for example, an ancestry is rarely called patrilineal because it is considered so by default. Another example would be the French word “fratrie”, which means a group of siblings and is directly derived from “frère” which means brother.

Quebec historian Mathieu Drouin pointed out that patrilineal genealogy is the “most known – and generally the easiest way – to rebuild one’s ancestry”[1] (Drouin, 2015) and that matrilineal genealogy is rather “counterintuitive”. Quebec historian, demographer and genealogist René Jetté made the same observation in his Traité de généalogie (Genealogy Treatise) in asserting that patrilineal genealogy is the “most ancient and most popular form” (Jetté, 1991: 110).

Finally, Pierre-Yves Dionne, genealogist and author of De mère en fille. Comment faire ressortir la lignée maternelle de votre arbre généalogique (From Mother to Daughter: How to bring out the maternal line of your family tree) (2004), insists on the fact that in Quebec as in most Western societies, women’s last names almost always come from a man (their husband or their father). He therefore uses genealogy to develop the basis of an eventual transmission of the name of a common female ancestor to subsequent generations of girls. That is exactly what Francine Cousteau Serdongs did: Cousteau is the last name of her uterine pioneer, the first woman in her matrilineage to set foot in New France (Cousteau Serdongs, 2008: 145).

Although the role played by women in history are increasingly emphasized (for example, see Yves Landry’s book on the King’s Daughters, 1992) and some concrete efforts are made to facilitate genealogical research about women (for example, the Drouin Genealogical Institute includes in its Great Collections the Féminine (or Women series), an alphabetical directory of marriages sorted by the bride’s name), I will show in this article that we are not done working on the women’s place in genealogy. Genealogy, like the rest of our society, is based on a patriarchal foundation that we can only deconstruct on the long term. With this first series of articles, I will look into the situation of women in genealogical research in Quebec. I will first explain why women are less present than men in genealogical research. I will then show, in the next articles, what are the consequences of this absence and what possible solutions we can put forward.

As mentioned earlier, our society, genealogical practices included, is a patriarchal society. As underlined by Geneviève Pagé, professor of political science at UQÀM, “patriarchy doesn’t mean that all women are submitted to all men, but that the men’s group, in general, is dominating the women’s group. Therefore, it is not because one woman has had a lot of power […] that we are no longer living in a patriarchal society” (Pagé, 2017: 354). Even though a lot of progress was made by women and feminists in history, in genealogy and in the rest of society, we are still living in a patriarchal system. In genealogy, the marginality of matrilineal lineages that many experts have put forward confirms it. In the rest of our society, it is well shown by the wage inequality, the underrepresentation of women in places of power (such as political institutions) and their overrepresentation in statistics of domestic violence and sexual assault (Pagé, 2017: 353-354).

Patriarchy has forged, through history, a sexist heritage that we didn’t actively construct but that we need to deal with. This heritage partially explains why women’s lineages are invisible in our research. Researchers can indeed have a hard time because of the way last names are passed on. First of all, the fact that women’s last names change every generation, while men pass on their last name to their progeny, makes matrilineal lineages less obvious.

Second, marriage sometimes muddies the waters when it comes to researching women. In Catholic records, women would keep their maiden name in any event that concerned them directly (marriage(s) and death) and even in records that concerned their spouse (remarriage and death) or their children (births, marriages and deaths), but in Protestant registers and historical Canadian censuses until the beginning of the 20th century, women were generally only referred to by the last name of their husband as long as he was alive, and even after (Jetté, 1991 : 436).

Catholic marriage: the bride is identified under her maiden name in the record. Source: Record 345331, LAFRANCE,
Protestant marriage; the bride is identified under her husband’s surname in the record. Source: Record 4778127, LAFRANCE,

Judy Russell, an American genealogist and law graduate, specifies that, in her country, other factors may make it difficult to retrace women in a genealogical research. The fact that they rarely received any inheritance, that they couldn’t take legal action in their name, own land or even open a bank account erased their names from many registers (Clyde, 2017). Those are additional sources: in general, we use marriages, deaths and births records to construct a family tree. Fortunately, Quebec archives are pretty exhaustive in that matter (Jetté, 1991 : 432), but there are always a couple of forgotten individuals and when those are women, they are more difficult to retrace.

Although we didn’t actively construct this patriarchal heritage, I believe it is the responsibility of each and every one of us to work toward a world where we are all equals. After all, these practices that put forward men’s lineages, we reproduce them day after day and we have the power to change them. Thus, Francine Cousteau Serdongs questions the way genealogy is organised as a science as well as how individuals themselves perpetuate these ideas in their own practice of genealogy (2008: 132). In the next two articles, I will detail the consequences of this erasure on the lives of women and I will explore some potential solutions.

Audrey Pepin

[1] Quotes which were originally in French have been translated by the author of this article



Clyde, Linda. (2017, April 26th). Ever Wonder Why It’s So Hard to Trace Your Female Ancestry? Rootstech [Blog].

Cousteau Serdongs, Francine. (2008). Le Québec, paradis de la généalogie et « re-père » du patriarcat : où sont les féministes? De l’importance d’aborder la généalogie avec les outils de la réflexion féministe. Recherches féministes vol. 21, no. 1, p.131-147.

Dionne, Pierre-Yves. (2004). De mère en fille : comment faire ressortir la lignée maternelle de votre arbre généalogique. Sainte-Foy : MultiMondes Editions ; Montreal : Remue-Ménage Editions, 79 p.

Drouin, Mathieu. (2015). Patrilinéaire, mitochondriale et agnatique : trois façons de faire votre généalogie! Histoire Canada.,-mitochondriale-et-agnatique-trois-facons-de-faire-votre-genealogie!

Jetté, René. (1991). Traité de Généalogie. Montreal : Les Presses de l’Université de Montréal, 716 p.

Landry, Yves. (1992). Orphelines en France, pionnières au Canada. Les Filles du roi au XVIIe siècle suivi d’un répertoire biographique des Filles du roi. Montreal : Bibliothèque Québécoise Editions, 280 p.

Pagé, Geneviève. (2017). La démocratie et les femmes au Québec et au Canada in La politique québécoise et canadienne, Gagnon et Sanschagrin (dir.), 2nd Edition. Quebec : Presses de l’Université du Québec, p.353 à 374.

Reny, Paule and des Rivières, Marie-José. (2005). Compte-rendu de Pierre-Yves Dionne De mère en fille. Comment faire ressortir la lignée maternelle de votre arbre généalogique. Montréal, Les Éditions Multimondes et les éditions du remue-ménage, 2004, 79 p. Recherches féministes, vol. 18, no. 1, p.153-154.

Over 500 000 new images and files – A look back at 2020

2020, as difficult as it was, will have been a productive year for the Drouin Institute, with the continuation of our efforts to digitize, index and democratize historical and genealogical data in Quebec and beyond. Over the past 12 months, more than 500,000 new files and images were made available on Genealogy Quebec. Here is an overview of these additions.


Last year, we completed the addition to the LAFRANCE of all of Quebec’s Catholic baptisms and burials up to 1861. Our focus this year shifted to Ontario and Acadia, as well as the Protestant baptisms and burials of Quebec.
In addition, our indexing efforts included parish records pertaining to Indigenous peoples of Quebec, a particularly complex task given the variety of surnames used in these records.

Record 6218959,

In total, 60,526 records were added to the LAFRANCE in 2020.

More information on the LAFRANCE

Browse the LAFRANCE (subscription required)

Connolly File

63,356 baptisms, 51,900 marriages and 32,418 burials were added to the Connolly File in 2020, bringing the total number of records in the collection to over 6.7 million.

The Connolly File is an index of Catholic and Protestant baptisms, marriages and burials from Quebec and part of the United States covering a period extending from 1621 to 2019.

More information on the Connolly File

Browse the Connolly File (subscription required)

Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections

Seven historical newspapers and 5000 wedding photos were added to the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections in 2020.
Here are the papers that were added:

  • Écho d’Iberville (1880 to 1882 and 1919 – 1920)
  • La Voix du Peuple (1880)
  • L’Alliance (1893 – 1894)
  • L’Essor (1968 to 1970)
  • Le Protectionniste (1882 – 1883)
  • Le Courrier de St-Jean (1887 and 1896 to 1909)
  • The Chesterville Record (1894 to 1939 and 1978)

You may browse them in the Miscellaneous Collections under the 23 – Journaux anciens folderAs for the wedding photos, they can be found under the 26 – Généalogie Saint-Laurent – Cornwall, Ontario folder.

The Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections contain a mix of images, documents, books, pictures and directories of historical and genealogical significance.

More information on the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections

Browse the Drouin Institute’s Miscellaneous Collections (subscription required)

Drouin Collection Records

26,392 parish register images were added to the Drouin Collection Records this year. These images are from the register of Notre-Dame-de-Montréal (church copy), which can be found under the Registres paroissiaux 1621-1876 folder in the Drouin Collection, and from 73 protestant parishes of the Montreal region, this time under the Registres non-catholiques 1760-1885 folder.

The Drouin Collection Records contain 5,208,563 images of parish registers from Quebec, Ontario, Acadia, New Brunswick and the Northeast of the United States.

More information on the Drouin Collection Records

Browse the Drouin Collection Records (subscription required)

Obituary Section

Internet obituaries

The weekly addition of internet obituaries continued throughout 2020, with now more than 2,550,000 obituaries from across Canada available in this collection.

These cover a period extending from 1999 to today.


Newspaper obituaries

25,000 death notices sourced from Quebec newspapers were added to Genealogy Quebec in May 2020.


These new obituaries date, for the most part, from the 21st century and more specifically the year 2019.



Finally, some 98,433 new tombstones were made available on the website in 2020.


This collection now contains over 710,000 headstones. A search engine allows browsing via the names and text inscribed on the stone.

More information on the Obituary section

Browse the Obituary section (subscription required)

Acadia – Families

35,000 family files were added to the Acadia – Families tool during the year, which contains 130,342 files pertaining to Acadian individuals.

The files contain the names and first names of the parents, the name of the child, the dates of birth and/or baptism, death and/or burial, and marriage, as well as the parish. Links to the original documents of baptism, marriage and burial mentioned are usually available.

More information on the Acadia – Families tool

Browse the Acadia – Families tool (subscription required)

Browse these collections – and many more – by subscribing to Genealogy Quebec today!


Genealogy Quebec Forum

Got questions about or genealogy in general? Want to share your research findings with other genealogy enthusiasts?

Look no further! Subscribe to the recently launched Genealogy Quebec forum today. It is free and open to all!

Drouin Institute’s blog

Here are the articles that were published on the Drouin Institute’s blog in 2020! If you’ve missed them, now is the time to catch up!

To conclude, we would like to wish you good health and a lot of success in your genealogical endeavors for the year 2021.

Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team

LAFRANCE update: 24,283 new records from Quebec, Ontario and Acadia

24,283 new baptism, marriage and burial records are now available on the LAFRANCE, one of the 15 tools offered to Genealogy Quebec subscribers.

These new parish records are from Quebec, Acadia and Ontario.

Sault-St-Louis (Kahnawake) and St-Régis (First nations)

6,714 baptism and burial records from the missions of Sault-St-Louis and St-Régis have been added to the LAFRANCE. These records pertain to individuals from the First Nations and date from 1769 to 1861.

Record 6217257,

Quebec (Protestant)

The addition of Quebec Protestant records continues on the LAFRANCE with 6,079 new baptism, marriage and burial records dated between 1768 and 1861.

Record 6228993,

The table below shows the number of records added by parish, type of record and date range.

Parish Type of record Min year Max year Added records
Ascot (Universalist Church) b 1833 1855 64
Ascot (Universalist Church) m 1850 1859 151
Ascot (Universalist Church) s 1845 1859 109
Frelighsburg (Anglican Church, Holy Trinity) m 1850 1861 28
Granby (Anglican Church) b 1844 1861 430
Granby (Anglican Church) m 1850 1861 53
Granby (Anglican Church) s 1844 1861 113
Granby (Congregational Church) b 1842 1854 87
Granby (Congregational Church) m 1850 1854 29
Granby (Congregational Church) s 1842 1853 41
Granby (Granby & Milton) (Anglican Church) b 1850 1852 64
Granby (Granby & Milton) (Anglican Church) m 1850 1852 21
Granby (Granby & Milton) (Anglican Church) s 1850 1852 15
Granby (Granby & Milton) (Methodist Church) b 1843 1843 15
Granby (Granby & Milton) (Methodist Church) s 1843 1843 2
Granby (Methodist Church) b 1857 1861 50
Granby (Methodist Church) m 1857 1861 28
Granby (Methodist Church) s 1857 1861 13
Lennoxville (Church of England) b 1827 1861 299
Lennoxville (Church of England) m 1850 1861 46
Lennoxville (Church of England) s 1827 1861 85
Roxton (Roxton & Milton) (Anglican Church) b 1853 1861 89
Roxton (Roxton & Milton) (Anglican Church) m 1853 1861 24
Roxton (Roxton & Milton) (Anglican Church) s 1853 1861 22
Sherbrooke (Congregational Church) b 1838 1861 137
Sherbrooke (Congregational Church) m 1851 1861 60
Sherbrooke (Congregational Church) s 1838 1861 11
Sorel (Anglican, Christ Church) b 1796 1861 1268
Sorel (Anglican, Christ Church) m 1839 1861 59
Sorel (Anglican, Christ Church) s 1796 1861 904
Trois-Rivières (Congrégation protestante) b 1768 1861 945
Trois-Rivières (Congrégation protestante) m 1850 1861 33
Trois-Rivières (Congrégation protestante) s 1769 1861 784

b = baptism, m = marriage, s = burial


On to Acadia, where 11,605 baptism, marriage and burial records dating from 1721 to 1861 have been added to the LAFRANCE. These are from Caraquet, Memramcook, Petit-Rocher and Ile-St-Jean.

Record 6207364,

Chatham (Ontario)

Finally, it is in Chatham, Ontario that we conclude the overview of this update, with the addition of 1,503 baptism, marriage and burial records dated 1850 to 1861.

Record 6227420,

These records can be browsed in the LAFRANCE, which also contains ALL of Quebec’s Catholic marriages from 1621 to 1918, ALL of Quebec’s Catholic baptisms and burials from 1621 to 1861, ALL of Quebec’s Protestant marriages from 1760 to 1849 as well as over 68 000 additional BMD records from 1861 to 2008.
You will find more information about the LAFRANCE on the Drouin Institute’s blog.



Genealogically yours,

The Drouin team