More filles à marier and a witchcraft trial

Today I am going to write about two Girardin ancestors who were both filles à marier.

Marguerite Charlot was born around 1627 in Paris, France.  She came to New France in 1647 and married Louis Loisel in Montreal on January 13, 1648. Maisonneuve was a witness at their wedding, as was our ancestor Gilbert Barbier, and Charles LeMoyne, an important citizen who would eventually become a seigneur.

Louis Loisel was born in 1618 in the Normandy area of France. He was a locksmith, and as he arrived in 1647, I wonder if perhaps they traveled on the same ship.

They had eight children, three of whom died as infants. Their first child, daughter Jeanne is considered the first European child to be born in Montreal and survive to adulthood She was sent to live with Marguerite Bourgeoys and be educated in her school.

In the book Marguerite Bourgeoys and Montreal, 1640-1665 by Patricia Simpson, p. 156,

we read:


We can assume the several of our early Montreal ancestors would have been educated by Marguerite Bourgeoys, whose first school was actually set up in a stable.

Louis died in 1691 and Marguerite in 1706.

We descend from Louis and Marguerite’s son Joseph who was baptized  November 25, 1654 with Maissoneuve and Jeanne Mance as godparents.

Marie Pontonnier was also a fille à marier, born in 1643 in France.  She came to New France in 1656 and chose to marry Pierre Gadois in 1657.  She must have had many men who wished to make her their wife,  because one of them,  Rene Besnard dit Bourjoly, a corporal, and an obviously unhappy rejected suitor, swore to cast a spell on the couple to make them sterile.

The spell was called “nouer l’aiguillette” and involved tying knots in the type of cord men used to close the flap on their clothing that covers their privates.

After a year of a childless marriage, Marie and Pierre sought a second nuptial blessing from Bishop Laval. When that didn’t work, they accused Besnard of witchcraft, and on November 2, 1658 we see the first trial for witchcraft in New France.  Besnard was found guilty, imprisoned, and then banished from Montreal.

You can read about it here.

After a three-year waiting period, Marie and Pierre’s marriage was annulled in 1660.  Pierre went on to marry someone else and have 14 children.

As for Marie, she married again, this time to Pierre Martin dit La Rivière, an interpreter and surgeon.  However, her life was not about to get any easier. On March 24 1661 Pierre was killed in an Iroquois ambush. On November 9 Marie gave birth to their daughter.  All this drama, and Marie was only 18!

She wasted no time marrying again, this time to Honore Langlois dit Lachapelle on December 5, 1661. Honore was a hat maker from Paris. They went on to have ten children and settled in the Pointe-aux-Trembles area . Honore died in 1709 and Marie in 1718 at the age of 75.

We descend from Marie and Honore’s daughter Jeanne.

Joseph (Marguerite Charlot’s  son) and Jeanne (Marie Pontonnier’s son) married in 1682 and settled in Point aux Trembles, on the eastern end of the island of Montreal. At one point Joseph was involved in the fur trade.

In Edge of Empire: Documents of Michilimackinac, 1671-1716, edited by Joseph L. Peyser, José António Brandão we read on page 23:

Joseph Loisel

Joseph and Jeanne raised a family of 12, at least one of which married in Kaskaskia in what is now in Illinois, so there was possibly another fur trade connection.

Joseph had a sister, Barbe, whose third husband was Francois Fafard Delorme, the interpreter in Detroit. Francois had married into the Jobin family which I talked about here.

Jeanne Langlois died in 1719 and Joseph Loisel in 1724.

So here’s our descent from these two strong women:

First we have:

1-Marguerite CHARLOT (abt 1627-1706)
+Louis LOISELLE (1618-1691)
2-Joseph LOISELLE (1654-1724)

At the same time we have:

1-Marie PONTONNIER (1643-1718)
+Honore LANGLOIS LACHAPELLE (abt 1631-1709)
2-Jeanne LANGLOIS LACHAPELLE (1664-1719)

Those two ancestors marry and we get:

3-Marie Madeleine LOISELLE (1694-1748)
+Charles TRUDEAU (1684-1742)
4-Marie Josephe TRUDEAU (1717-1762)
+Paul LUSSIER (1711-1773)
5-Louis LUSSIER ( 1749-?)
+Marie Madeleine LANGEVIN (1749-1822)
6-Christophe LUSSIER (1773-?)
+Marie Charlotte BRUNEL (1774-1806)
7-Magdeleine LUSSIER (1795-1832)
+Charles ALLARD (1787-1862)
8-Joseph Pierre ALLARD (1826-1875)
+Marie BONIN (1827-?)
9-Onesime ALLARD (1852-1896)
+Napoleon GIRARDIN (1851-1929)
10-Marie Emma GIRARDIN (1878-1979)


2 thoughts on “More filles à marier and a witchcraft trial

  1. My family is Chartrand, apparently lived with Gilbert in Montreal. We come from very brave people.

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