by Gérard Lebel
Thursday, the 24 On the day of January 1664, the members of the Conseil Souverain de Québec were considering a complaint lodged by one of their members, Charles LeGardeur, Sieur de Tilly. And here is their judgment:
"On what was represented by Charles LeGardeur ... that the name Louis le Page his domestic servant, to the detriment of the Ordinances of this Council published and displayed or needed was, had without any leave quitting his service having withdrawn in the Coste and Seigneuripe de Beaupré. And where on the King's Attorney General The Council has ordered and orders that the said le Page will be taken and apprehended to the body and made prisoner in the royal prisons of that city for the sake of the law.
Charles LeGardeur (1614-1695) was navigator, governor of Trois-Rivières, member of the Community of the Inhabitants, merchant, caterer, one of the first advisers of the Sovereign Council, a good and honest man. Does he regret having brought such an accusation against his servant? Does this condemnation remain a dead letter? It seems.
Louis Lepage was finishing, it seems, his 36 months of engagement. He had to come to the country in 1661, with his brother Germain. This last one, 25 years of age, 3 June 1664, received in Quebec the sacrament of Confirmation with 68 other confirmands and confirms.
Germain had left his wife Reine Lory and his son René in France. Louis and Germain had come here as scouts with the caution of certain migratory birds. Both will stay in New France. Germain will bring here his wife and his son Rene, who will become Lord of Rimouski, St. Clair, Pachot and Anse-aux-Coques. Even their sister Constance Lepage will join them in eight years.
From Lower Burgundy
Louis, Germain and Constance Lepage came from Lower Burgundy, where the conquering Romans once passed. One of the common 12 of Courson-les-Carrières, chief town of the canton of Yonne, in the Nivernais, is called Ouanne. This is where the members of the Lepage family were born. The church of the fifteenth century, dedicated to Notre-Dame, still offers religious services to over a thousand inhabitants. The archbishopric of Auxerre is located about twenty kilometers. This country of hills and valleys always presents visitors with fields of cereals and market gardening prosperous.
According to our Canadian documents, Louis was born between 1640 and 1642. His parents were named: Étienne Lepage and Nicole Berthelot. Louis and Germain had some education since they signed with ease. Constance Lepage, their sister, born to 1648, arrived later in the Colony, probably in 1672. Indeed, the 12 February 1673, she was godmother of Constance Duchesne, Saint-François, Île d'Orléans.
A question is worth asking about Marie-Rogère Lepage, born to 1631, widow of Paul Bellefontaine, daughter of René Lepage, sieur of the Cross, and Catherine Millot. Marie-Rogère was born in Saint-Martin, city of Clamecy, in Burgundy. Was she related to Louis, Germain and Constance? Perhaps! She came here under the auspices of the institution of the king's daughters. On 5 December 1667, at Quebec, she married Roch Thoéry, Sieur de l'Ormeau, a soldier in the Carignan regiment. Finally, the 16 October 1681, she was again convolent with Jean-Baptiste Peuvret, owner of the back-fief of Mesnu on the island of Orleans. Those who are alike come together, says the saying.
On the island of Orleans
9 July 1664, Germain and Louis Lepage are full-fledged inhabitants in the Colony; they can become owners, Barbe de Boulogne, widow of Louis d'Ailleboust, sieur de Coulonges, owner of the back-fief of Argentenay on the island of Orleans, grants to the brothers Lepage 4 arpents of land abreast in the territory of the current parish of Saint-François. The 7 June 1665, Louis, with Marie Perreault, was godfather of Anne Lereau, daughter of Simon.
At the census of 1666, Louis and Germain live well on the island. The following year, the enumerators indicate that they own 15 arpents in culture and that they live between the neighbors Pierre Loignon and Gabriel Rouleau, said Sanssoucy. Queen Lory and the son Rene have not yet arrived in the Colony.
Louis and Germain work together on the same farm, in the same island.
Louis gets married
By the summer of 1667, Lepage had a home and furniture that could be used as a springboard for a new home. The happy future wife elected Louis was named Sebastienne Loignon or Aloignon (onion!).
The ancestor Pierre Loignon had engaged in the service of Noël Juchereau, the 4 March 1647. This pioneer married in Quebec, 8 October 1652, Françoise Roussin. As early as 2 April 1656, Charles de Lauzon-Charny granted him 3 arpents of land abreast on the island of Orleans, parish of Sainte-Famille. The eldest in the family, Sebastienne, was born on 27 August 1653. The following September 7, she was featured on the baptismal font of Notre-Dame de Quebec by François Badeau and Sébastien Veillon. Father Jerome Lalemant poured the water of baptism on the forehead of the little one.
Wednesday 24 August 1667, a clerk in the company of the royal usher Jean Levasseur had traveled to the island of Orleans by the north channel, to initial the marriage contract of Louis Lepage and Sebastienne Loignon aged 14 years.
On the side of the future bride, grandfather Jean Roussin, Uncle Nicolas, the aunts Madeleine and her husband Michel Huppé, Louise and Jacques Asselin, the captain of the company of Maximy in the Carignan regiment, shone by their presence. Lieutenant Sixte Charrier of Mignarde, Gabriel Rouleau and Mathurine Leroux, finally the usher Jean Levasseur. On the side of Louis Lepage, stood his brother Germain, Simon Lereau and Suzanne Jaroussel, his wife.
The clauses of the matrimonial convention, written according to the norms of the custom of Paris, possess nothing very new. Louis offers Sébastienne the customary dynasty of 300 tournament books. Is it a clerk's tool? No word is said about the precipitate.
The Buttocks bleed to white to help their eldest daughter. They promise to give him 2 milk cows, 2 young oxen and 20 wheat wheat berries. For keychain, they offer their daughter 2 covered, 1 dozens of brand new shirts, 1 dozen towels, 3 tablecloths, 6 sheets, 3 dishes, 6 plates, 1 suit suitable for nuptials, 1 other suit "honneste", 2 dozens of handkerchiefs, 24 headdresses. The text of the contract was paid to the minutier of the notary Duquet, of Quebec. Louis and Sebastian, 30 January 1669, gave a general discharge to Pierre Loignon and his wife for all they had received.
Alas! the act of the nuptial blessing can not be found in our records. Lost! But Sebastianne and Louis remained united to life and death.
The Lepage lived together for a few years. Sebastienne took care of keeping the house: Germain and Louis, to keep the farm. The 1672 year seems to have brought the first major changes in the life of the Lepage family.
Queen Lory, Rene Lepage, 13 and Constance Lepage arrived in New France that year. It was a very long wait for Germain. 12 February 1673, René was godfather of Constance Duchesne with his aunt Constance. Then, the 11 September 1673, Queen Lory presents herself as godmother of the third child of Louis and Sebastian.
The family, reunited to the full, had to reorganize. On 24 October 1672, the brothers decided to share their farm in two parts. Louis took the 2 arpents on the side of the widow Chartier, with the house at the bottom of the coast, near the beach, the one they had built together on the 2 arpents belonging to Germain. That's why Louis kept half an acre more. Germain's neighbor was Pierre Mailloux, dit Desmoulins.
Did the Lepage organization have irritating constraints? 14 August 1673, the brothers sold their land to the Hospitalières de Québec, through Nicolas Huot, known as Saint-Laurent, their attorney. The surveyor Jean Guyon measured the 4 arpents "of the passage of the north of the said isle on which met six arpents and half ... of net land and an acre and half of felled wood ... withq a body of house". The nuns will take possession of everything at their convenience. Price of this sale assignment: 415 books tournaments.
The nuns had verbally promised another concession to Louis. In any case, the 1er August 1677, at the monastery of the Hotel-Dieu of Quebec, they conceded to Louis Lepage 3 arpents of land abreast on the St. Lawrence River, parish Saint-François, seigneury of Argentenay, south side of the island. These 3 arpents front were added to as many arpents conceded to an earlier date which is unknown to us. The named neighbors are Simon Chamberland and Germain Lepage. Gilles Roger, bailiff, Etienne Marandeau sign the act of concession as witnesses. Louis thus possessed 6 arpents of land abreast.
At the 1681 census, Louis, 40 years old and Sebastien Loignon, his wife, 30 years, own 1 rifle, 11 horned beasts, 12 arpents of land in cultivation. Pierre Labbé and François Garinet are mentioned as their peaceful neighbors.
It is not always easy to understand the travels of Louis Lepage and his family. An act of the notary Paul Vachon, the 4 February 1682, brings us some light. Simon Chamberland and Marie Boisseau, his wife, give a receipt to Louis Lepage for a sum of 360 pounds "for cause and act of delivery of the housing unit in the ditte seigneurie dargentenay" ... The master surgeon of Beaupré, Louis Moreau , and Nicolas Métru, royal usher, sign this receipt with the notary.
However, the land in question had not yet been officially sold. It is only the 22 August 1686 that Chamberland admits in front of notary to have sold, the 9 January 1678, to Louis Lepage, a concession of 3 arpents front on the St. Lawrence River, passage of the south. Jean Guyon, sworn surveyor, the 25 August 1678, had drawn up a report of survey of the said concession. In addition, Simon acknowledges having received in 1682 in addition to 360 books, 10 books for pins in favor of his wife Marie Boisseau.
The engineer and cartographer Robert de Villeneuve during the year 1688, it seems, had represented on paper the area around Quebec, especially the island of Orleans. This map shows in the parish of Saint-François-de-Sales the barn and the house of Louis Lepage numbers 44 and 46, south side of the island, a few acres west of the church.
Thousand books in a cassette
Françoise Roussin, mother of Sébastienne and mother-in-law of Louis, died 3 December 1691 at the Hôtel-Dieu de Québec. Her husband Pierre Loignon had preceded her in the grave for about a year. But before dying, something strange and mysterious had happened about Françoise Roussin.
A few days before the death of the grandmother, brothers-in-law Louis Lepage, Etienne and Nicolas Drouin, Jean Gagnon and Antoine Paulet had delegated Pierre Roberge to try to make light. The 28 February 1692, the notary Claude Auber had written a request in due form. The pot with the roses had been discovered by the son Charles Loignon, Paul Dupuis, prosecutor of the king, had received the last wishes of the deceased. The cassette containing 1 000 books, Paul Dupuis asserted, is in the hands of a known person. Thunderclap! The wishes of the deceased are that 1 000 books go to his son Charles, but in secret. If the news comes out, this portion of inheritance will have to be shared equally between all the heirs. The son Charles, magnanimous, declared that he deserved no more than the others. The pearls of the cassette were thus shared with equity ...
The ancestral land Loignon, located at Sainte-Famille, owned 6 & frac12; arpents head on the river. It was Charles Loignon who acquired this paternal farm by buying the share of the other heirs. Louis Lepage and his wife accepted the sum of 800 books besides 50 pin books from Charles and tutor Jacques Asselin. This sale was signed on 19 October 1695. Louis received cash 300 books. This legacy provided a helpful contribution to the Lepage home.
The book of life of the family of Louis Lepage and Sébastienne Loignon consists of 14 chapters of unequal lengths. Here are the titles: Étienne, Marie-Madeleine, Renée, Pierre, Joseph, François, Marguerite, Elizabeth, Rose, Jean, Germain, Angélique, René-Louis and Marie-Madeleine. They were written with love between the 8 April 1669 and the 12 January 1699, the 30 space years.
The godchildren of Uncle Germain: Étienne and Germain did not survive. Renée, Aunt Reine Lory's goddaughter, only lived for a few weeks. The registers of St. Francis Parish on the island were opened in the summer of 1679. François Lepage was the first of the family to receive baptism at the church of Saint-François. This son, the November 6 1704, made donation for cause of death to Joseph Lepage, his brother. Was he sick? Had he decided to become a coureur de bois? Then we lose track of this 6 child of Louis and Sebastian.
Marie-Madeleine, the eldest of the Lepage daughters, unites her life to Gabriel Thibierge, son, widower of Anne Perrault, father of 6 children; she gave him a dozen others to secure his descendants.
Pierre Lepage loved Marie-Madeleine Turcot. They got married at the Holy Family Church on 3 May 1700 and became responsible for 7 offspring.
Claire Racine, of Sainte-Anne du Petit-Cap, conquered the heart of Joseph Lepage: nuptial blessing the 21 February 1707. This brave woman, mother of 8 children, died at St. François, IO, the 11 March 1728. Joseph remarried at Montmagny, the 1er August 1729, with Marie Fournier.
Angélique Lepage allied herself with the Bilodeau family by marrying Antoine the 10 July 1713, in Saint-François. Alas! his man was killed by thunder at Berthier on June 19. Widow and mother of 1728 children, Angélique, married in the same place, the 5 April 24, with Joseph Daniau or Dagneau, son of Jean and Françoise Rondeau.
The younger Marie-Madeleine Lepage entered the family Guérard accepting for his man Charles, the 13 April 1722. The couple was stumped by his 9 children.
Louis Turcot conquered the heart of Marguerite Lepage, 15 March 1706; Marc Beaudoin, that of Elizabeth, the 13 April 1711; Antoine Pépin, dit Lachance, November 12 1709, that of Rose.
Baptized 2 June 1689, Jean Lepage only married 15 July 1723 with Marie Gagnon, daughter of Jean Gagnon and Anne Mesny.
René-Louis becomes captain of a ship. He was the only one to get married in Quebec City. 6 July 1725, he married Marie-Thérèse Bisson, born of Antoine and Ursule Tru. The genealogist Tanguay attributes to them 6 children, all born in Quebec. After the death of René-Louis, Thérèse Bisson married the widower Jean Vallée, 12 January 1739, in Quebec City.
These 14 chapters summarize the second volume of the Lepage collection, The Page or Page, a living collection, never ending.
Page at the King's Court
The pioneers Lepage and associates changed one day to become pages at the court of the celestial king. Constance, wife of François Garinet, left first. She was buried on 18 August 1688. Reine Lory, after 1696, no longer appears in our registers here below.
Sébastienne Loignon, 49 years, died 2 December 1702 in Saint-François, perhaps victim of the famous epidemic that began to wreak havoc in the region of Quebec. Jacques Beaudoin and Louis Juchereau, sieur of Saint-Denis, were the witnesses of his funeral, on Sunday 3 December. She left orphaned a toddler aged 3 years, Mary Magdalene.
Louis Lepage survived his wife for about 8 years. His body was buried in the cemetery of Saint-François, November 27 1710. The visiting priest Pierre-Joseph-Thierry Hazeur only signed his name in the register after the deceased. This is a summary burial act!
The third generation, almost half of whom had not yet reached adulthood, managed to survive, thanks to mutual aid and fraternity, which the well-known modern security systems have difficulty achieving.
Jean Lepage, called Jean-Baptiste by the Clerk of the Conseil Souverain the 15 February 1712, asks that he be given his legacies and affirms that he wants "To enjoy the income of his property and his furniture" ... The judges promise him "letters of benefit of age".
Then, more than a month later, the 5 April 1712, the Sieur de la Martinière reports that Louis Dallaire, first Warden of the Fabrique de Saint-François, opposes the execution of a judgment stating the 13 November 1710 by Intendant Jacques Raudot and wanting that the said Louis Lepage, son, can enjoy the use of a bench other than the one he currently uses. The church warden Dallaire was right.
To the confession and enumeration of the fief of the island of Orleans written in 1725, we read this: "That above (Louis Marsault) are the heirs of Louis Lepage who have seven arpents of land in front of lade deepr loaded of four livres fifteen sols of France and five capons of rent and two sols three deniers of Cens aussy de France which have house, barn, stable, and about one hundred and twenty arpens of land Labourable ".
"Culture," writes Paul Savard, "can be defined by the memory of those who came and what they left better. It is a set of values that are inspired by the past, but may be intended to improve our own condition and quality of life. To reconstitute the life of an ancestor is to try to embrace a story that is not entirely foreign to us.
The descendants of Louis Lepage and Sébastien Loignon are today a multitude. Good simplicity and noble pride seem to be their specific characteristics. The living environment of the heir generations has changed, but the genetic, intellectual and spiritual heritage is infinitely more valuable than the framework that supports the picture.