Several LeBlanc immigrants came to settle in New France
(Québec). The first, but not the least, was a
Normand with the first name of JEAN; at Québec on
21 November 1643, he married Madeleine NICOLET with
whom he had 5 children; only their daughter Madeleine had a family.
Jean LEBLANC was killed by the Iroquois on the
Ile d'Orléans on 11 September 1662.
Then came the Limousin, Léonard LeBlanc, master mason,
married to Marie RITON on 23 August 1650, at Beauport,
Quebec; Nicolas LEBLANC dit LABRIE, who married Madeleine
DUTEAU on 2 November 1664, at Cap-de-la-Madeleine;
Jacques LEBLANC, married to Suzanne ROUSSELIN on
6 June 1660, at Montréal. This couple raised
9 children at Charlesbourg.
Elisabeth ROY, widow of Pierre PAILLEREAU, accepted Antoine LEBLANC,
dit Jolicoeur as her husband on 26 January 1670, at Sainte-Famille on the Ile d'Orleans.
They had five children.
A breton named Pierre LEBLANC, dit GRANDMAISON, allied himself with the
DOMINGO family by marrying Elisabeth, at Québec in 1720.
Their children were raised
Should it still be necessary to extend the list by
mentioning another Antoine LEBLANC, soldier in the
LaRonde company, married to Marguerite LÉGER
at Québec in 1729? The cook André LEBLANC, born about
1731, son of André and of Marie-Josephte RÉAUME, from Saint-Nizier, diocese of Lyon,
was married at Québec on 12 November 1766, to Marie-Josèphte BEAUGIS; then in a second marriage on 15 November 1773
at Rivière-Ouelle, to Geneviève BOUCHARD, daughter
and of Marie-Dorothée OUELLET.
Finally, Georges LEBLANC, son of Jean and of Marie-Thérèse AVISSE, from Cahagnolles, diocese of Bayeux in Normandy, went to l'Islet on 31 January he married Charlotte BÉLANGER, daughter of Charles and of Jeanne ÉMOND. We know that Georges was ceded a piece of land on 15 May 1750 on the eleventh range of Saint-Jean-Port-Joli. This couple had a son Joseph, who established his own family.
Such was the great Leblanc river which flowed and still flows in
America, beginning from New France.(Québec)
THE ACADIAN LEBLANC ANCESTOR
The roots of the LEBLANC families are diverse in New France. (Québec) In Acadia, there was only ONE, but its numerous derivations stretch across all of Canada, the United States and into Louisiana. The LEBLANCS are to the land of Evangeline what the Smiths are to the United
States or the Tremblays are to the land of Dollard, the Sieur des Orneaux.
Daniel LEBLANC is held responsible for this respectable Acadian line. Unfortunately, the French origins of the father of this small group of people are difficult to specify. There are many hypotheses as to where Daniel came from but none of them can be proven today. The Great Deportation of the Acadians carried away with it many important documents, records and registers.
In 1605, François GRAVÉ, Sieur du Pont, and Samuel de CHAMPLAIN founded Port-Royal located at the mouth of the Annapolis River. The settlement was made up of buildings grouped around a central court yard. In the summer of 1607, the site was abandoned and l'ordre du bon temps, abolished. Biencourt de POUTRINCOURT, in 1610, re-established the colony; but, three years later, the English pirate Samuel ARGALL destroyed this settlement from top to bottom.
Finally, Port-Royal was returned to French jurisdiction. Inspite of its crude buildings, Port-Royal appeared as the first lasting European settlement in North America, north of Saint Augustine, Florida. It was Isaac de RAZILLY, a ship's captain and chevalier of Malta, who in 1632 led about 300 soldiers and colonists who settled at La Hève and in the neighboring area.
Less than 20 years later, it was at Port-Royal that Daniel LEBLANC wanted to put down the foundation of his house. He was about 24 years old at the time and quite audacious. He decided to establish his residence on the north bank of the Port-Royal river, called today the Annapolis River, northeast of marais-a-Belisle, about 13 kilometers above the fort of Port-Royal and nearly a little less than a kilometer
below the chapel of Saint-Laurent.
Father Archange GODBOUT, O.F.M., the very respected genealogist,
believes that Daniel LeBlanc went to Acadia before 1650. Françoise Gaudet, his wife, belonged to a well-established family at Port-royal; its head, Jean Gaudet, had been known in the region since 1636. Françoise was the widow of a husband named Mercier and the mother of a daughter named Marie.
AT WORK AND IN ORDEAL?
The founders of the Acadian people were valiant and brave, but also they were a people stricken, disturbed and troubled by various allegiances.
The colonists of Port-Royal had barely begun to reorganize themselves when in 1654 the place was again taken by the English. At that time there were about 200 inhabitants. From 1654 to 1664, there was no resident missionary at Port-Royal. The nearest Jesuits lived at Miscou. The Treaty of Breda, signed in 1667, granted territorial and commercial advanted to France and Acadia back to France. According to Placide GAUDET, it was only in 1670 that the French authorities truly began their duties.
May we imagine the frustration and the anguish which the Acadian
colonists endured? The climate of the area was certainly, clement. One could easily live from fishing, hunting, trading, and farming. However, it was in this disturbed and divided land, that Daniel LeBlanc and his family lived. At the end of their life, in 1690, PHIPS reconquered Acadia in the name of Albion. It was only returned to France in 1697 by the Treaty of Ryswick. During the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1713), other set-backs awaited this beautiful land. It finally passed to England in 1713, on the occasion of the Treaty of Utrecht.
Port-Royal was renamed Annapolis Royal. All members of the LEBLANC line remember it.
CENSUS of 1671
After the Treaty of Breda and the return of French authority, the
Acadian population began to scatter. There was a census.
In 1671, Port-royal counted 68 families: 63 men and as many women, 5 widows and 227 children. The livestock was made up of 829 head of cattle and 399 sheep. It seems that there were 417 arpents of workable land.
Daniel LEBLANC, 45 years old, and his 48 year old wife, Françoise
GAUDET, were listed in the census under the category of workers. They owned 18 head of cattle and 26 sheep. Their cleared lands were 10 arpents "in two places". The neighbors named: Michel POIRIER and Vincent BRAULT. The list of the inhabitants was drawn up by Laurent MOLINS, a Franciscan priest. On 8 November 1671, Hughes RANDIN (1628-1680(, from Québec, drew up the summary of this work before sending it to Jean-Baptiste COLBERT, Secretary of State and Navy Secretary, at the residence of the king.
Is it possible to obtain other details on this LeBlanc family?
THE LEBLANC FAMILY
The census of 1671 provides us with the names of the SEVEN children of Daniel and Françoise: Jacques, Françoise, Étienne, René, André, Antoine and the youngest, Pierre. They were between the ages of 20 and 7. Were there other children who had died in infancy? There is no way to know. The historians have noted, however, that the infant mortality rate was very low in Acadian. There were no epidemics as in New France.(Québec)
Jacques LEBLANC, the eldest, was born about 1651. At Port-Royal abt 1673, he married Catherine HÉBERT, daugther of Antoine and Geneviève LEFRANC. This family settled at Grand-Pré, Saint-Charles-des-Mines, where they saw 13 children born, including the youngest Bernard who became a royal notary.
The eldest of the daughters, and the only daugther, Françoise, was the first to enter the state of matrimony by marrying Martin BLANCHARD, son of Jean and Radegonde LAMBERT, in 1671.. Françoise died rather young since her husband was married a second time about 1686, to Marguerite GUILLEBEAULT, daughter of Pierre and of Catherine TÉRRIOT. Martin BLANCHARD was a hardworking and an enterprising man. In 1701, he sold his property to his son René, issue of Françoise LeBlanc. He left Port-Royal to join in the fortune of Mathieu MARTIN, provisional seigneur of Wecobequit.
As for Étienne LEBLANC, he was involved in navigation. His destiny is unknown. His brother René was allied to the great Bourgeois family by marrying Anne, daughter of Jacques and of Jeanne TRAHAN. The historian Adrien BERGERON reports that the couple brought 6 children into the world, including René, junior, who became a notary. René LEBLANC, a notary immortalized by Henry Wadsworth LONGFELLOW in his poem Evangeline, (can be found on this web site) had 3 children himself from his first wife and 17 from his second, including triplets born in 1721.
André, also born at Port-Royal about 1659, became the husband of Marie DUGAS, daughter of Abraham and of Marguerite DOUCET. This family settled at Grand-Pré where ten children were born.
His brother Antoine LEBLANC was also married to a BOURGEOIS, Marie, sister of Anne, wife of René LEBLANC. They had ten children.
The six sons of Daniel LEBLANC and Françoise GAUDET had 46 known
children [35 grandSONS]...a researcher has counted 52 of them.. who produced 200
others. And thus was the beginning of the birth of a people very
widespread today in Canada and in the United States. There were but two at the starting line; they became a multitude at the finish.
AT THE END OF THE CENTURY
Daniel LEBLANC was the wise and venerable ancestor who knew how to win the respect and gratitude of his compatriots.
"When on 24 May 1690 Sir William PHIPS, who had just taken possession of the place, required that some habitants of Port-Royal and those of the river by the same name chose six among them to form a Council in order to keep peace among them and to administer the court, Daniel LEBLANC was one who was chosen."
Father Adrien BERGERON continued his eulogy when he reported that the most important document that they had concerning Daniel LEBLANC was that of the statement of the work carried out in Acadia by Sieur d'Aulnay; the report was drawn up on 15 October 1684 by the notable people of Port-Royal, recorded and certified at Parish on 27 December 1688. the signers of the document were Louis-Alexandré Des FRICHES de Meneval, then governor for the King of all Acadia, and Father Louis PETIT, grand vicar of the diocese of Quebec, curate of Port-Royal.
Ancestor Daniel LEBLANC died between 1693 and 1698. History, sometimes cruel, has not even remembered the day of his death at Port-Royal. Françoise GAUDET, widow in a first marriage to a man named MERCIER, responsible for a daughter Marie MERCIER, was a mother 7 times with Daniel LEBLANC, She died at the home of her son Pierre, between 1698 and 1700.
The measurement of the life of men is neither material accumulated nor money in the bank, but the value of his acts, his heart and soul. DANIEL and FRANÇOISE, you were good and generous, without measure.
Acadian LEBLANCS have made themselves notable in several professions such as medicine, journalism, law, government, etc. Their sons and daughters are found in several religious communites. Among the priests, three reached episcopate. The first, Msgr Edouard-Alfred LEBLANC occupied the episcopal seat of Saint John, New Brunswick, from 1912 to 1935, as fifth bishop of this diocese founded on 4 May 1842. He was born at Saint-Bernard in Nova Scotia on 15 October 1870. His parents were Luc LEBLANC, farmer and Julie BELLIVEAU.
His Excellence Msgr Albini LEBLANC was first named Bishop of Hearst, Ontario, in 1940, then of Gaspé where he exercised his episcopal authority from 1945 until 1957, the year of his accidental death.
Msgr Camille-André LEBLANC was named Bishop of Bathurst, New Brunswick, on 25 July 1942, and inducted into his function on 8 September of the same year, the birthday of the Virgin Mary. He retired on 8 January 1969.
The LEBLANCS are more than a name; they are an admirable people!
SOURCES: French Canadian Ancestors by Thomas J. Forest (English version of Nos Ancêtres. This is a series that is also available in French. There are many volumes to this series.