A Tradesman in Bretagne, France.
Guillaume Forcier and Sébastienne Gaultier were married around 1645 in Saint-Aubin, Nantes, Bretagne where he labored as a faiseur de toile or linen maker. For thousands of years mankind has used the long fibers from the stem of the flax plant to make textiles. The linen produced was somewhat coarse, but very durable.
The couple had a son, our ancestor Pierre, who was born about 1648. Sébastienne was 42 when she died in 1665. Pierre was seventeen.
Pierre left for Canada where he is found being confirmed in the Catholic faith in l'Île d'Orléans on 16 February 1669.
He was 22 when he entered into a contract for marriage with Marie-Claude Chamois, though that arrangement was annulled 16 October 1670.
The fille du roi Marguerite Girard arrived aboard the ship L'Éspérance three years later on 03 September 1673. Her journey from the port of La Rochelle lasted about two months. One of her companion travellers was our ancestor Anne Leper.
Pierre and Marguerite were married soon after and their first child, Marthe, was baptized in Sorel on 11 February 1675. The town was located on the south side of the Saint-Lawrence River, at the mouth of the Richelieu River.
By and large, their children were all baptized in Sorel, about 18 miles upriver of their home in Saint-François-du-lac. This may simply have occurred based on the availability of a priest. Typically babies were baptized as soon as they were born but in this family group there is a lag of a few days perhaps explained by the time it took them to travel. The new mother had to walk or paddle in a canoe or sail in a barge to the other settlement.
The Forcier family was noted in the 1681 census at Saint-François-du-lac. Pierre age 33, owned 1 fusil, 8 arpens terres en valeur in the seigneurie de Saint-François with wife Marguerite Girard, age 32. Their children included: Joseph, 5; Marie, 3; Pierre, 1. Their neighbor, René Abraham, age 36, was a widower with one son, René, age 3. Our ancestor Marguerite was born three years later in 1684.
Marguerite and Pierre lost two of their children in 1689: Pierre 9 yrs, Jean-Baptiste 23 months.
- René Jetté, Dictionnaire généalogique des familles du Quebec des origines à 1730
- https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Harfleur_-_Compagnons_duellistes_-_battage_du_lin.jpg By Pymouss [GFDL (https://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC BY-SA 3.0
- Histoire de Saint-François-du-Lac,by Sulte, Benjamin, 1886: Par les actes de bapteme de ses enfants, on voit Forcier etait a Sorel en 1675, mais cela peut tout aussi bien signifier qu'il habitant St Francois. C'est dans cette paroisse qu'il fut tue en 1690
- Recensement du Canada 1681, Recensement de 1681: Les premiers habitants de la seigneurie de la Rivière Saint-François