52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: #10 Alexandra Forget (née Tourville) (1863-1891)

Have you ever heard of the well-renowned Montreal’s photographer, William Notman (1826-1891)? Thanks to the McCord Museum Website and its online database, you can take a look at the wonderful portraits taken by this great artist who has welcomed in his studio many famous people of the time.

If it hadn’t been for my passion for genealogy, would I have been able to identify “Mrs. R. Forget” as being Alexandra Tourville, wife of Rodolphe Forget?

1886 Tourville Alexandra

Source: http://www.mccord-museum.qc.ca/en/collection/artifacts/II-81633.1, Photograph | Mrs. R. Forget, Montreal, QC, 1886 | II-81633.1

Born in 1863, Alexandra was the daughter of Louis Tourville, co-founder of the Banque d’Hochelaga (known today as Banque Nationale du Canada or National Bank of Canada), and Célina St-Jean. Alexandra was married to Rodolphe Forget on October 12, 1885, in St. Jacques’ Catholic Church, in Montreal. This picture was taken one year after her wedding at the age of 23 years old. In 1889, she gave birth to a daughter, Marguerite Marie-Louise. Alexandra died at age 27 years and 11 months.

La Minerve, May 14, 1891 - TRANSLATION: Death- FORGET- At 86 Cherrier St. on the 12th, at age 27 years and 11 months, died Alexandra Tourville, wife of Mr. Rodolphe Forget, of L.J. Forget et Cie. The funeral will be held on Monday the 16th, at 8:45 am at the Gesu. Family members and friends are requested to attend.

La Minerve, May 14, 1891 – TRANSLATION: Death- FORGET- At 86 Cherrier St. on the 12th, at age 27 years and 11 months, died Alexandra Tourville, wife of Mr. Rodolphe Forget, of L.J. Forget et Cie. The funeral will be held on Monday the 16th, at 8:45 am at the Gesu. Family members and friends are requested to attend.

If the name of Rodolphe Forget rings a bell, well he’s the one! He married his second wife Blanche McDonald in 1894. One of their children was Thérèse Forget, more commonly known as Thérèse Casgrain.

I thought, what a shame I am not related to that great pioneer of the Women’s rights movement. Well, I was wrong, we are related. Rodolphe Forget’s direct ancestor is the brother of Élisabeth Forget, wife of Augustin Tourville. Aren’t we all cousins?

52ancestors-2015

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: #5 Célina St-Jean (1834-1894)

What I fear most is happening, my workload at the office is more than I wish at this time of year. I am finding difficulties to keep my promise.

I found this funeral notice (in French) in La Minerve newspaper from Montreal dated Saturday, February 17, 1894 for Célina St-Jean, wife of Louis Tourville, legislative counsel in Quebec at the time of his wife’s death. She died on February 12 and the funeral took place on Friday, February 16, one day before the newspaper was published.

We do not have legislative counsel anymore in Quebec. For those familiar with Canadian politics, this function was the equivalent of senator on the federal scene.

This list is quite impressive, with all people that count in that time period on Québec, federal or municipal political scenes.

If you have French-Canadian ancestors and feel a little bit adventurous, you might try to dive in and look in La Minerve which covers the years 1826-1899. While it is not indexed, if you have a date, you might try to take a look.

Also, this link will lead you to a searchable newspaper database (in French). You might try it, you never know.

If you need help with the interface, do not hesitate to contact me, I will be glad to help.

52 Ancestors / 52 Weeks is an idea proposed by Amy Johnson Crow. Link on the image for more details about it.

52 Ancestors / 52 Weeks is an idea proposed by Amy Johnson Crow. Link on the image for more details about it.