Monday, March 19, 2018

Re-examining the History of La Prairie-de-la-Madeleine



First Iroquois onneyout arriving at the mission of de Laprairie.
Drawing of Father Cauchetièr

SOURCE: LA PRAIRIE TIMELINE FROM AN ARTICLE FROM THE MÉMOIRE DU QUÉBEC (2018)[EDITED]

1647 
(April 1, 1647 ) Concession of a seigniory (part of the lordship of La Citière, 2 leagues front on the St. Lawrence to begin "from Île Sainte-Hélène to a quarter of a league beyond a meadow called the Magdalen, vis-à-vis the islands that are close to the jump of the island of Montreal 4 leagues deep) "by the owner of the lordship of Citière, François de Lauson Jacques de La Ferte Abbe de la Madeleine (Paris), one of the members of the Company of the Hundred Associates, who cedes it to the Jesuits; the territory of the lordship is crossed by the rivers La Tortue, Saint-Lambert and Portage (Saint-Régis); the Jesuits name their seigniory Prairie-de-la-Madeleine .

1667  
Foundation by the Jesuit Father Pierre Raffeix of the Iroquois mission Saint-François-Xavier-des-Prés in the seigniory of La Prairie-de-la-Madeleine; his parishioners are Onneiouts he brought back from the south. 

1670
(November 19, 1670 ) CELEBRATION OF THE FIRST MARRIAGE IN THE PARISH, THAT OF PIERRE GAGNÉ TO CATHERINE DAUBIGEON.
The village has 5 cabins housing 18 to 20 families from different sources (Agniers, Huron, Onnontagués, Andastogués, Andastes). 

1671 
The censitaires are obliged to grind their grain at the seigneurial mill built by the Jesuits on the way from the village to the Saint-Jacques river.

1673
THE POPULATION OF THE SEIGNEURY IS 99 INHABITANTS (51 MEN INCLUDING 36 SINGLES, 15 WOMEN AND 33 CHILDREN).

Forty Mohawks brought by the Jesuits from Kaghnuwage Village (Gandeouagué) arrived on the Mohawk River in present-day New York State, United States. 

(April 9) The Jesuits concede a site (6 poles per 3 poles) in the village to PIERRE GAGNE OR GAIGNIER.

1675
(June 27, 1675 ) Concession of a fief (2 leagues front x 2 leagues of depth) by the King of France and Minister Colbert to the Jesuits for the Iroquois who call it Sault-Saint-Louis; this fief is bounded on the east by the seigniory of La Prairie-de-la-Madeleine; the act of concession states that the territory will return to the Crown when the Iroquois abandon it. 

1676
(July) The Iroquois mission moved to the mouth of the Portage River (Saint-Régis) on the site of the current Sainte-Catherine City Hall and adopted the name of Kahnawake. 

1677
There are 52 censuses in the seigneury.

1683
Opening of a school.

1685
There are 682 Indians on the territory of the Sault-Saint-Louis establishment.

1687 - 1689
The village is surrounded by a palisade standing upright so that the inhabitants and their animals can find refuge in case of attack Iroquois .

1689 - 1697
Intercolonial war; the English and Iroquois against the French and other Native American nations; There were several bloody battles in the seigniory.

1690
(4 September) A SURPRISE ATTACK BY THE IROQUOIS AT A PLACE CALLED THE FORKS KILLED 25 PEOPLE (11 MEN, 3 WOMEN, A GIRL AND 10 SOLDIERS); THE IROQUOIS BURN HOUSES AND KILL HORNED ANIMALS.

1691 
(August 11) A troop led by British Major Peter Schuyler killed 14 people in the seigneury.

1692
THE POPULATION OF THE LORDSHIP IS 181 INHABITANTS.

1695
There are 682 Indians on the territory of the Sault-Saint-Louis establishment.
(June 20) The Jesuits concede a site (79 toises) to FRANÇOIS LEBER.
(February 26) The Jesuits concede a site (46 toises) in the village to JACQUES DENIAU. 

1697
(June 2) The Jesuits concede locations in the village: one to JACQUES DENIAU (450 toises outside the palisade) and one to PIERRE GAGNÉ (225 toises outside the palisade.

1698
There are 790 Indians on the territory of the establishment of Sault-Saint-Louis. 

1773
The seigniory is seized by the Crown like all the property of the Jesuits in Canada.

1821
Opening of a post office under the name of La Prairie. 

The savages going to settle in the Prairie of the Magdeleine with the French.
Drawing of Father Cauchetièr

SOME OF MY EARLY LA PRAIRIE FAMILIES FROM “PRAIRIE EN NOUVELLE-FRANCE, 1647-1760” BY LOUIS LAVALLÉE

Barette, Barrois, Bourassa, Boyer, Caron, Cusson, Deneau, Denot, Desrochers, Diel, Dupuis, Dupuy, Duquet, Gagne, Leber, Lemaistre (Denise), LeMoyne, Lemieux, Marie dit Sainte-Marie (Lamarie), Moreau, Perras, Pinsonneau, Poupart (Poupard), Robidou, Roy, Testard

French mission to the Iroquois at Sault-Saint-Louis
(present-day Caughnawaga or Kahnawake, near La Prairie) c1680

FROM: “KAHNAWAKE MOHAWK TERRITORY: FROM SEIGNEURY TO INDIAN RESERVE,” PAPER BY JOAN HOLMES, 2006

The Jesuits had been granted the Seigneury of La Prairie de la Madeleine on the south shore of the St. Lawrence across from Montreal in 1647. La Prairie was granted to the Jesuits to enable them to found a mission for First Nations and establish a retreat for missionaries working with First Nations. The terms of the grant also gave the Jesuits the right to settle whomever they pleased on the land.

The 1667 treaty between the French and Iroquois quelled open hostilities, which allowed the Jesuits to establish a mission and attract French settlers to La Prairie. By 1670, the Jesuits claimed to have brought 18 to 20 christianized families to the mission, which they named St. Xavier des Praiz (de Près); the Iroquois called the mission village Kentake (today’s La Prairie). There were reportedly about sixty French settlers on the seigneury by that time. Over the next few years, the mission attracted many Iroquois.

As early as 1674, the Jesuits petitioned Governor Frontenac for an additional tract of land on which the Indians of the mission could cultivate corn. Thus, the first steps were taken to establish the Seigneury of Sault St. Louis. While Frontenac was suspicious of the Jesuits’ motives, the newly-installed Intendant, Jacques Duchesneau, gave permission in January 1676 for the Iroquois to work on a tract measuring two leagues by two leagues adjacent to La Prairie on its upstream or western boundary. That summer, Iroquois families from the La Prairie mission moved upriver, established the village of Kanawake, and began cultivating the land. The Jesuits called this new mission St. François Xavier du Sault. Within a few years, the Iroquois had cultivated 200 arpents (about 170 acres) at the new location.

It was in 1679 that Frontenac for the first time lamented in his correspondence the fact that “the Natives who are among us, and principally those of the Mission of la Prairie de la Magdelaine” “ordinarily” “carried their furs there [to Albany]”.

In October of 1680, a second grant of one and a half leagues by two leagues was issued jointly by the Governor and Intendant. The second grant was intended to include all of the vacant land between the first grant and Chateauguay, a seigneury that had been established further upstream in 1673. The second grant contained the same conditions as the first grant.8 Together the two grants created a seigneury three and a half leagues by two leagues situated on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River between the Seigneury of La Prairie de la Madeleine and the Seigneury of Chateauguay.

The Iroquois had been living and cultivating land at Kanawake on the most easterly portion of the new grant for four years by the time the seigneurial grant was made in 1680. As was the practice with Iroquois horticulturists, they shifted their village several times over the ensuing years always moving upstream towards Chateauguay. In 1690, they established a village called Kahnawakon. Six years later, in 1696, they moved to Kanatakwenke, and finally, in 1716, they founded the village of Caughnawaga, now known as Kahnawake. Each time they moved they left cleared land behind.

Prince Edward's Canoes passing Caughnawaga, 29 August 1860,
by Frances Ann Hopkins

NOTES: Seigneury Sault du St. Louis, aka: Caughnawaga and 17 European spelling variations of the Mohawk Kahnawake 

The Kahnawake Mohawk Territory is a reserve of the traditionally Iroquoian-speaking Mohawk nation on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River in Quebec, Canada, across from Montreal. Recorded by French Canadians in 1719 as a Jesuit mission, it has also been known as Seigneury Sault du St. Louis, Caughnawaga and 17 European spelling variations of the Mohawk Kahnawake...

In the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, the community was historically considered one of the Seven Nations of Canada...

The name is derived from the Mohawk word kahnawà:ke, meaning "place of the rapids", referring to their major village Caughnawaga near the rapids of the Mohawk River in New York. When converted Catholic Mohawk moved to the Montreal area, they named the new settlement after their former one...

Many Kahnawake people are of mixed ethnicity, of Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Seneca, French, English, Anglo-American, Scots and Irish descent but identifying as Mohawk.Wikipedia

FROM: THE GREAT PEACE OF MONTREAL (WIKIPEDIA)

The Great Peace of Montreal (French: La Grande paix de Montréal) was a peace treaty between New France and 39 First Nations of North America. It was signed on August 4, 1701, by Louis-Hector de Callière, governor of New France, and 13 hundred representatives of 39 aboriginal nations.
The French, allied to the Hurons and the Algonquians, provided 16 years of peaceful relations and trade before war started again.  Present for the diplomatic event were the various peoples; part of the Iroquois confederacy, the Huron peoples, and the Algonquian peoples.

During this era, the French were particularly anxious to draw the Five Nations Iroquois, including the Mohawks, away from the British and bind them in alliance. The Jesuits, and other religious orders, played a role by establishing missions to attract First Nations to settle, convert to Catholicism, and remain in political, military and economic alliance with the French. Establishing and maintaining a friendly Iroquois presence around Montreal was perceived as being necessary for French colonial security; the missions were integral to that purpose. The Jesuits used the Crown’s anxiety about security of the colony to justify another seigneurial grant that would give the Iroquois more land on which to support themselves.


FROM: "THE PRICE OF EMPIRE: SMUGGLING BETWEEN NEW YORK AND NEW FRANCE, 1700-1754," BY EUGENE RICHARD HENRY TESDAHL

The 1667 treaty with the French revealed deep rifts among the Five Nations. Many Seneca already favored the French, even as many Mohawk who had favored the Dutch were disposed to accept the English as allies. Still others saw any involvement with Europeans as a dangerous weakening of the Great League of Peace and Power. At the same time English authorities struggled with a lack of consolidated power in New York and New England. These divisions combined with the Catholic influence Huron wives had brought into Mohawk families and proved too much for the Mohawk. In 1667 several Mohawk clans moved to the St. Lawrence River, in Nouvelle France, closer to Catholic priests, French trade goods, and Huron homelands. The first Mohawk settlement near the French was called La Prairie de la Magdeleine, or simply, La Prairie.

1681 census Prairie De La Magdelaine

Ripples from La Prairie Voyageur Canoes -- My Voyageur Ancestry








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