Travel 2017 | Day 7 | From Elizabeth I to Mick Jagger: A Walking Tour of Richmond

After four full days devoted to research at The National Archives in Kew, I thought I deserved a break. For the first time today, I woke up later than 5 AM (7:30 AM!), and while surfing on the Web, I read there was a walking tour of Richmond leading to 17th-century Ham House, once home to a friend of King Charles I. Deal! Continue reading

Travel 2017 | Day 4 | Finding Ol’ Blue Eyes

Hide in plain sight they say. That’s just what I have been doing. It was kind of entertaining to observe that old stubborn lady from Longueuil trying to catch me.

Well, well, well… Seems like she finally laid hands on that Description Book from the Glengarry Fencibles Regiment. Ain’t that funny! She was looking for it in the Canadian Archives, but it was here in England. Even worse, it’s available for everyone to review it on the UK’s National Archives Website. Continue reading

From the Archives: A Snapshot of Montréal’s Common Gaol in 1820

Prison commune de Montréal, Place Vauquelin, 19e siècle — Archives de Montréal, VM6,R3067-2_155E-1939-005

Life is full of surprises.

As I was doing research for the Bangle Files at the Archives nationales du Québec on Viger Street in Montréal, I unearthed a document among the criminal files shedding light on the appalling living conditions at Montréal’s Common Gaol, actually the same building where John Bangle and his wife, Marie-Louise Quevillon, were detained in September, October, November 1820 and beyond.

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Charles Huboux dit Tourville—Master Blacksmith

Going through the acts of Notary Public Toussaint Limoges, who practiced in Terrebonne during the period 1811-1832, I collected not fewer than 25 acts concerning Tourvilles or close family members.

Four of these were involving Charles Huboux dit Tourville.

Well, fine, but who’s who?

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From the Archives: Ellen Burley née Tourville (1833-1875)

I brought back a few nuggets from my Illinois and Missouri trip last fall and here is one of them.

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The Bangle Files: #20 | Murder She Wrote


Parish of Saint-Pierre of Sorel
Michel Flynn

On September Seventh, one thousand eight hundred and twenty, I, the undersigned vicar priest, have buried in the cemetery of this parish, the body of Michel Flynn, Roman Catholic, assassinated on the sixth instant, in one of this borough’s houses, according to the testimonies of several witnesses. The said Michel Flynn was about twenty-eight years old. Were present Thomas Pratt and William Pococh, people who have signed with us.

Thomas Pratt
William Pococh — M. Cusson, Priest

[Translation from French: Diane Tourville]

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From the Archives: Finding Your Ancestor in the 19th Century’s Election Polls for the District of Montréal

While perusing on Pistard, the Bibliothèque et Archives nationales Québec’s search engine, I came across something really helpful and thought I would share it with you.

If your ancestor was living in Lower Canada in the 1820s, 1830s and 1840s, you certainly know how challenging it can be to find him in the 1825 and 1831 Canadian Census. As only the head of the household is mentioned therein—besides the number of people living in the house broke down by age categories—there is not much you can extract from these censuses. Continue reading

40 Days | Day 14 | A Day At The Archives

fullsizerender-126Home Sweet Home! Just before leaving for St. Louis I had found in a notary’s repertoire numerous contracts concerning the Arpajou family—I’m working on the ancestors of Sophie Arpajou married to Charles Tourville. While perusing said documentation, I stumbled upon the name Bangle. Continue reading

From the Archives: A Portrait of Louis Tourville (1831-1896)

Tourville Louis 03Q_P1000S4D83PT0057

Louis Tourville (1831-1896) ~ Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec, cote P1000, S4, D83, PT57

Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec is always adding images to its Website. Everytime I check for Tourvilles, I find something new! Continue reading

The Shoemaker: Charles Tourville (1828-1879)

Anyone looking out for his ancestors having lived in the city of Montréal during the second half of the twentieth century cannot ignore the great resource that is the Lovell Directory (available online on the BANQ Website). This valuable research device helps us knowing people’s whereabouts between censuses. Continue reading