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Family Histories

The origins of the Plante Family

According to historians the name Plante came from the work performed by this ancestor, he was a farmer and planted vegetables, in other words he was a farmer.

Records indicate that Jean Plante was the first to arrive in Québec form the La Rochelle area of France.  The date of his arrival is not determined.  It was easy to determine that he married Françoise Boucher in Québec's cathedral on September 1, 1650. 

Jean Plante's original dwelling is located in the Québec suburb of Chateau Richer, at 8294 avenue Royale.  This "Québecois style" house was built of wood in 1869 and an addition made in 1871 is clearly identified with a plaque as a historical site and that it was one of the first concessions of the province. 

The origins of the Bibeau family

At the origin bibauds were French foot soldiers that had a cross-bow or spear as weapon, or both.

François Bibeau (Bibaud) was born in La Rochelle, France, and baptized in Notre-Dame de Cogne church in 1642.  He arrived in Canada in the spring of 1660.  He established himself Trois-Rivières in 1672, moved on to St-François-du-Lac and Batiscan in 1700 and died in Trois-Rivières in 1717.

François Bibaud was a "courreur des bois"* from 1661 to 1671.  He traded, with the American Indians; glass beads, mirrors and other trinkets for pelts which he then sold to the Hudson Bay Company.

A short history lesson on the Meloche family

The first Meloche to come to Canadian soil was François Meloche.  He left La Rochelle, France, his place of origin sometime in 1793 to establish himself in the town of Lachine (a Montréal suburb).  Prior to immigrating to Canada, he had married Marguerite Mouflet, also from La Rochelle, France.  He and his immediate descendants remained in the Lachine area and were known to be merchants that had a general store.  They also specialized in imports and exports. 

Napoléon Meloche (1895-1961), his brothers and sisters became orphans at a very early age.  Their father Benjamin Meloche and their mother Valérie Éthier deceased at a very early age.  The family was taken in charge by an uncle, Wilfrid, who had been given, by testament the tutorship of the family.  All the children were raised in the strictest rules of the Roman Catholic Church and for the period given the best of education.  All of them received a university degree.

Napoléon Meloche was one of the first Québec electrical engineers and a pioneer in his domain.  He became the province's chief electrical inspector, engineered and supervised the installation of the first high tension electrical lines across the St-Laurent, writing the first Canadian electrical code, his services were leased to the Ontario government to establish national standards.  He remained in his job until the arrival in power of the anti-union Duplessis government.  Within 24 hours after the elections, he was fired by the prime minister elect. 

Wilfrid Meloche, Napoléon's brother became a teacher then a school principal for the Montréal Catholic School Board.  He was the founder of the Montréal Teacher's Alliance, the first teacher's union in the province and a promoter of the JEC, a student association.

Rose-Alma MelocheSister Sainte-Marie-Benjamin of the Congregation of Notre-Dame and Napoléon's sister was the founder of the JEC in miscellaneous schools.  With Simone Monnet-Chartrand and Senator Thérèse Casgrain, she fought for women's rights and for the worker to unionize.  During the last few years of her life, she was the chief accountant at the mother house of the Congregation. 

One of Rose-Alma's nieces, Jeanne Meloche, Sister Sainte Monique, joined the same religious order as her aunt.  The daugher of Wilfrid Meloche was also very active in establishing the JEC.  She was very active in her community and collaborated with the same persons as her aunt in order to establish certain rights now taken for granted.

The Bellemare ascendants. 

The surname 0f Bellmare is an alias.  The original name of this family was Jullineau, which become Gélinas, which became Gélineau prior to becoming Bellemare

The first ancestor of this branch was Jean-Baptiste Gélinas dit Bellmare.  He was the son Jean Gélinas and Françoise de Charminil.  The first of this branch to arrive in Canada was Étienne Gelineau, son of Joseph Jullineau.  He arrived in Québec in 1645. 

Jean-Baptiste was the first to take the name of Bellemare and all his descendants will keep his name.  Therefore, the surname of Bellemare is purely Québecois.  All those that carry this surname are his descendants. 

The information on the ascendants of Narcisse Bellemare is based on family legend.  There is little documented information on this branch. 

Narcisse Bellemare (1846-1949).  My great-grandfather was a kind old man, as a boy I sat on his lap and he would tell me all kinds of children's stories.  Among all the stories he told me was one which never changed, all others had several variants. 

The story goes somewhat like this:

"A few months after the death of your great grandma, God Bless her soul, I decided to re-make my life.  ...In those days we did not have much choice, furthermore I could barely read or write, although I did not have much schooling I knew my maths.  ...I decided to go to the states to make my fortune.  I left with only a backpack, a water jug, a wool blanket, my razor, my Winchester, ammunition, a few bucks and two horses. 

For days, weeks, not to say months, I travelled in a south-west direction, I wanted to go to the north of California. ...Occasionally I would stop in a village or on a farm ...Just for a few days to make myself some money to continue my trip. ...Everything was going fine until the day I started to cross the desert.  I had to guide myself on the sun.  During the day the temperature exceeded 100 degrees.  And at night I froze. ...While crossing the desert one of my horses fell sick and I had to put him away, the next day my other horse broke a leg and I had to put him away as well. ...I wandered for a while before passing out.  How long I don't know. 

When I came to, I was in an Indian hut.  The Navajo, had picked me up and treated me and brought me back to health.  While I was with the Navajo, I took part in typical male activities like hunting.  I was treated like one of theirs.

While living with the Indians, I met your great-grandmother  that I loved and married.  She gave me beautiful children.  ...After meeting her I quit searching the white man's treasure.

Several times I had to fight with the Indians, against the white man.  ... One spring day I had to fight Buffalo Bill Cody and his gang who had set fire to our house, barn and stable.  Most of my adopted brothers and sisters were killed.  All we were able to save was a wagon and a few horses.

We rebuilt the house, barn and stable, waited for the fall to put food stuff in storage.  And with the consent of the chief and that of your great-grandmother we left to return to Québec, a place where we could bring up our family and live in peace.  You live in a beautiful country, take good care of it."

by Robert Jacques

Where are the Laurendeau? 

The first Laurendeau to arrive in Québec was really called Rolandeau.  He established himself in Montréal in 1750.  Laurendeau is another name that is purely Québecois.  Little else is known of this branch.



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