The road leading to Saint-Martin-de-Fraigneau
Photo : © Pascal Pelletier private collection.


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The warm seasons, favorable to navigation, have seen more than one Pelletier sail from their native provinces of Perche, Beauce, Aunis, Franche-Comté, Poitou, Orléanais, and Normandie to the colony in New France. Among these Pelletiers, was Pierre, who set sail from the port of La Rochelle sometime around 1665. Pierre Pelletier, son of Jehan Pelletier and Andrée Pouvereau, was born on August 24, 1634, in Saint-Martin-de-Fraigneau in Poitou.

Land Concession in New France

On December 9, 1671, the day before his wedding, Pierre Pelletier acquired from Lord Denis-Joseph Ruette d’Auteuil the parcel of land on which he and his new bride, Françoise Trochet dit Richard, would make their home. Situated in the Seigneury of Dombourg, in what is today Neuville, this land measured two arpents along the Saint Lawrence River and forty arpents inland, and on one side bordered Etienne Magnan, and on the other, Noël Merlin. The Seigneury itself belonged to Lord Jean Bourdon, who had granted a portion of it to d’Auteuil; the concession that d’Auteuil granted to Pierre Pelletier was subject to the following conditions: “To wit, the said party [Pierre Pelletier], or his heirs, must pay to Lord d’Auteuil, or to his heirs, each year at his home in the Seigneury of Dombourg, a rent of twenty sols for each arpent of frontage, as well as a quitrent of two live roosters and six deniers for the entire acreage of the said concession, the said rent and quitrent bearing fines of alienation and seisin, per the common law of the provost-ship and viscountship of Paris; the said party must construct a habitation on the said land, to be occupied by him or by another within a year from the date of this presentation; the said party must execute equally and to the fullest extent all clauses, conditions, and submissions borne and expressed in the titles of concession for the residents and habitants of the said Seigneury of Dom-bourg, of which the party is fully aware, with which the party is satisfied, and which the said party promises to execute to the fullest degree for the profit of the said Lord d’Auteuil or his heirs, in the event of the death of the said Lord….”

As d’Auteuil had himself already cleared some of the land on this concession, Pierre agreed to pay him the sum of 150 pounds, and this via two promissory notes, one with a Monsieur de Villeray for forty pounds, and a second, with Nicolas Peltier, for another forty pounds; the balance of seventy pounds remained for Pierre to pay to d’Auteuil on or before the next feast day of Saint-Rémi, October 1.

It is noteworthy that Pierre knew Nicolas Peltier, originally of Gallardon, in the province of Beauce, who had arrived in New France in 1636. Notary public Romain Becquet, in the presence of witnesses Claude de la Serre and Martin Bouffard, drew up the contract of con-cession; Pierre, not knowing how to sign his name, initialed only PIP on its pages. Today, the land of Pierre Pelletier belongs to Jean-Paul Côté.



Following his arrival in New France, Pierre settled on a concession of land measuring two arpents along the Saint Lawrence by forty arpents inland, in the Seigneury of Pointe-aux-Trembles, in what is today Neuville, which belonged to Lord Jean Bourdon.

On December 10, 1671, per the contract they signed before notary public Romain Becquet, Pierre Pelletier married Françoise Trochet dit Richard, a “fille du Roi”; born about 1641 in Saint-Agnan, commune of Grivesnes, district of Mondidier, diocese of Amiens in the province of Picarie (today the Somme), she was the widow of François Matoret, a master-cooper. We should note that in this contract, Pierre stated that he was the son of the late Jehan Pelletier, meaning that his father had died sometime before 1671. Having settled in Saint-François-de-Sales (Neuville), Pierre and Françoise bore two sons there, Pierre, born in 1672, and Noël, born three years later.

Among the friends and family present at the nuptials were Anne Gasnier, widow of Jean Bourdon, in charge of the “filles du Roy” once they had arrived from France; there was also Marie-Anne de Saussaye, and Lord Michel du Parquet, as well as the witnesses previously mentioned, Claude de la Serre and Martin Bouffard.

On her wedding day, Françoise Trochet dit Richard owned three hundred fifty French pounds. Of this, she had received fifty from the King of France as a “fille du Roi,” the other three hundred most likely having come from the estate of her late husband, François Matoret, whom she had married while still in Picardie. Pierre Pelletier therefore married a relatively wealthy woman – perhaps the reason for her byname, “Richard” –, and it was because of her wealth that Pierre was able to afford the concession in the Seigneury of Dombourg (Neuville).

In fact, according to common law of Paris, which was the sole legal code enforced in the colony, those property and wealth that either newlywed brought to the union, they shared as one “community.” Per their marriage contract, this community ensured that Pierre and Françoise were liable “all together and one for all” for all contracted debts made by either spouse before and after their nuptials. Moreover, by entering into this community, Pierre and Françoise shared each other’s household goods – furniture, linen, utensils, etc. – as well as any real estate acquired in relation to his profession or craft. Finally, the family goods, designated “property” by the common law of Paris, included any real estate due to either the husband or the wife by direct or indirect inheritance or by donation.



Pierre Pelletier and Noël Jérémie.

The census of 1666 reports that Pierre Pelletier worked as a servant for Lord Noël Jérémie, who had acquired a 638-arpent seigneury of his own on the Isle of Patience in 1662.

Noël Jérémie, known also as Lamontange, son of Claude Jérémie and Hélène Macart, was born in Mareuil-sur-Ay, in Champagne (France). His ages at the different censuses of New France (1666,1667, 1681) indicate that he was born some time about 1628 to 1636; he died in the area of Quebec City sometime around 1696. An interpreter and fur trader in the vast Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region, based in Tadoussac, he traveled and traded with area Indians accompanied by his wife’s brother, François Pelletier-Antaya; on January 29, 1659, in Quebec City, shortly after his arrival in New France, Jérémie had married François’ sister, Jeanne, daughter of Nicolas Peltier, of Gallardon in Beauce (France).

Pierre Pelletier died in Pointe-aux-Trembles (Neuville) on December 30, 1694, and was buried in the cemetery there the following day. His widow, Françoise Trochet dit Richard, was buried in Neuville on May 15, 1706. Nothing remains of this original cemetery today; in its place, there is a tennis court.


Noël Pelletier, his second son.

Noël was born in Neuville on December 5, 1675, and baptized at Notre-Dame-de-Québec the next day. He would go on to become Captain of the Militia in Neuville.

On February 8, 1700, at the parish church of Saint-François-de-Sales of Neuville, Noël wed Marie-Angélique Garnier, daughter of François Garnier dit Pellerin and Jacqueline Freslon. Marie-Angélique was born in 1679 and died in 1703 at the age of twenty-four. She and Noël had two children, Noël in 1700 and Marie-Madeleine in 1702.

On August 13, 1703, Noël married Marie-Madeleine Matte, daughter of Nicolas Matte and Madeleine Auvray, also from the parish of Neuville.

Noël Pelletier was buried in Neuville on May 23, 1748.


L'ancêtre Pierre Pelletier


Author : Jean-Denis Pelletier
Publish in french in La Pelleterie, volume 5, no 1 - été 1991.
To order this issue : formulaire de commande.


Latest Discoveries about our Ancestors :

After reading the Origin Files (“fichier Origine”) about the different baptisms found in France, I set myself to finding a copy of a document proving that Pierre Pelletier had a brother, forgotten until now for some three hundred years. After vain efforts at the Société de généalogie Canadienne-Française (SGCF) to obtain the address of the French researcher who had indicated the existence of this document, I decided to place an advertisement in the forum of the Association de généalogie française (AGF) in Vendée (France). I wanted to see if any fellow genealogists might be able to go to the Departmental Archives (AD) in Roche-sur-Yon to locate a baptismal certificate dated June 24, 1640. Different colleagues replied via e-mail, confirming the existence of this document, but no one was able to produce a copy of it as proof because, it seems, the Departmental Archives were not equipped with a photocopy machine.

In 2002, the Departmental Archives digitized, via CD-Rom, the majority of the registers for the towns and communes in Vendée, and Mr. George Paquet and his wife were able to produce copies of the baptismal certificates for not only Pierre Pelletier, but also for his brother, Louys. In the case of Pierre, the Association had known about his baptism since 1982, when Jean-Denis Pelletier brought back a copy after his visit to Saint-Martin-de-Fraigneau. As for Louys, however, it was only at the end of 2002 that his existence became known. Although this copy came from the registers preserved at the Departmental Archives, there are two registers available, one at the town hall, the other at the AD.


« L’an de grâce mil six cent trente quatre le 24e jour d’août à été baptisé Pierre Pelletier fils de Jehan Pelletier et de Andrée Pouvereau Et a été parrain Pierre Guillon et marraine Élizabeth Lalie.

                                               Barranger (paraphe)
_______ Pelletier Mil six cent quz  ________
_______ ______ Pelletier »

Translation: “In the year of our Lord 1634, on the twenty-fourth day of August, was baptized Pierre Pelletier, son of Jehan Pelletier and of Andrée Pouvereau, godfather being Pierre Guillon, and godmother, Elizabeth Lalie.”

                                              Barranger (paraphe)


« Le vingt quatrième jour de juin mil six cent quarante ... battizé Louys Pelletier fils de Jehan Pelletier .... Andrée Poumelle [le parrain a été] Louys Bourit et la marraine Catherine Phellipeau par moi Barrangier curé de Saint Martin de Fraigneau »

Translation: “On the twenty-fourth day of June, 1640, [was] baptized Louys Pelletier, son of Jehan Pelletier … Andrée Poumelle [godfather being] Louys Bourit, and godmother, Catherine Phellipeau, by me, Barrangier, rector of Saint-Martin-de-Fraigneau.”

Please note that reading the photocopied document is relatively easier than reading these digitized versions.


©Association des Familles Pelletier Inc.