Saturday, October 14, 2006

Canadian History Moment

If you google the words "first permanent settler in Canada" you will get several references to a man called Louis Hebert. The address below will take you to a concise essay on our friend Louis. I would take you there myself, but I haven't learned that skill yet. Louis Hebert is well-established in Canadian history as the first permanent "Canadian" resident, despite the fact that the country was not called that at the time. Canadians do not quibble on the point.

No, I am not a direct descendent of Monsieur Hebert, but I am a direct descendent of a family that came from France later in the 1600's, along with Samuel Champlain and his gang. I am, in a straight line of descent, in the fourteenth generation. My children represent the fifteenth generation. My family tree intersects with Louis Hebert's family tree in the second or third generation, so there is some overlap. I have been to Quebec, but not to the Isle d'Orleans where there are tombstones of some of my old ancestors dating back to the mid-1600's. My dad has been there. We have a beautiful document of our family history that was done by a priest in the Catholic church sometime in the last century. My grandmother updated it and had it translated into English. My dad has since added to it, and we all have a copy. It is called 'Nos Familles" (our families). My ancestors were all artisans. They worked with their hands as silver smiths and cutlers.

My dad's French-Canadian family married within French, Roman Catholic families in all branches until his mother married an English Irish Protestant. That made a wave! They lived in Rural Saskatchewan and worked as teachers and in the county clerk's office. My dad was the first in his entire family tree to get a university education. My mom's family is more recent to Canada. Her grandparents came from England and Ireland. My dad used to say my mom's people were all Irish horse thieves just to make her mad. We only know a little bit about my mom's family -- only back to her grandparents. They were farmers.

My mom's dad was an alderman (sort of like a mayor) in Regina in the 1950's. We have a picture of him meeting and shaking hands with the Queen of England. I have not served a beer to up-Chuck, but my friend Laura did when Expo was here in 1986.

That makes CBM the winner of round 2.

Round 3 (obviously you'll stop if you're tired of playing, but I give out decent prizes)

1. I have never smoked marijuana
2. I have never had a hangover
3. I have never broken a bone


SooZ said...

Jayne, its enjoyable to read about your family history. My late father kept track of the family tree and reading of yours makes me want to follow more closely mine.

Thanks for sharing.

(I vote that you've never broken a bone.)


Having a Knit Fitt said...

I vote that you have smoked marijuana - but, of course, didn't inhale.

Rosie Perera said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Rosie Perera said...

[reposted now that I've got my profile set up with my picture]

I vote for #1 (never smoked marijuana) as the lie. I bet you've never had a hangover. Miss goodie two-shoes all her life. And only recently beginning to explore the wild and crazy side. You're old and wise enough by now not to get so drunk that you'd have a hangover (um, I can't say as much for myself; it took me four times, once a year in college, drinking so much that I threw up, to learn my lesson). But I bet you've tried pot in the past four years. Have no idea whether you've ever broken a bone, but it's quite likely that you haven't. I never have.

I wonder if my recent email to you with the link to the hysterical story about Canadian troops battling 10-foot marijuana plants in Afghanistan was why that weed was on your mind lately?

jayne said...

Ha, Rosie! You know me too well. I think you're right about that link and weed on my mind. I also recently had my birthday, so that might have been an extra reminder.

Fair's you get a point and so does Cate.

I am up at such a shameful hour. I have a friend over tonight, and we've been talking all night. Can you picture it? :)

Oh -- love the picture, BTW!!

Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed the family history! How wonderful that you are able to trace it. I say that you have never broken a bone.

Karin said...

Loved reading your family history Jayne. I am a huge history buff (esp. Canadian) and have a neat family tree - fodder for one of my future posts? Will have to get braver about non-knitting content. I vote for never breaking a bone - cause I'm the same (touch wood).