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Acadia ... 1632 to 1653
 
 
     Once France had regained Acadia in 1632, settlers ... male and female ... were brought to the colony to raise their families.  Most of the most populous Acadians families have roots that go back to settlers arriving in this time period.
1632 to 1653
Cardinal Richelieu
Cardinal Armand Du Plessis Richelieu
He was calling the shots for France in 1632.
1632 - TREATY OF ST. GERMAIN-EN-LAYE
    In 1632, France once again gained control of New France (including Acadia) under the Treaty of St. Germain-en-Laye. This time, they started recruiting sending men and women with the intent of raising families and settling down in Acadia. 
    The Company of New France, or Company of 100 Associates [Trading Companies, Biggar, p. 133-65], was formed in 1627 to work on the fur trade. [Clark, p. 91]  Cardinal Richelieu, who was in charge of France at the time, listened to the advice of his cousin, Isaac de Razilly, who thought that France should start colonizing Acadia.  Richelieu approved and Razilly left France on L’Esperance a Dieu on July 4, 1632 with 2 transports and 300 people (mostly men).  There may have been 12-15 women in this group. [Clark, p. 95] 
     In the French Gazette newspaper (July 16, 1632), we find mention of 2 vessels from Auray in lower Brittany that joined a third from La Rochelle in heading for Acadia.:

"The sorrow that there is to solve the difficulties which are in the large companies made differ two months, and opiniatreté of the wind of downstream two other months later than I had not told you the loading for the Company of New France.   But finally the loaded vessel from La Rochelle arrived to join two others from Morbihan that Commander de Razilly (having the commission of the King to control in the extent of the country in the absence of the Cardinal Duke de Richelieu, brought there at the beginning of this month, charged with all things and three hundred elite men. It carries the assent of the King of Great Britain to remove the Scots out of Port Royal and take of it possession in the name of the Company, which sends to it three Capuchins for the conversion of the people of Acadie, in addition to five Jesuits that it already sent in the other dwellings of Cap Breton, the Gulf and the St. Lawrence River.  The embarkment of this noble force returning there illustrates the beginning of colony which will make an easy passage to all the French, for the honor of their nation and their peace, that it will be from now on easy for them to comply with the King, that the great businesses of its kingdom do not prevent it from going across the seas the concepts to increase the Catholic faith, by a procedure quite distant from that which was practiced until now in the discovery of the Indies, where one was satisfied with spoils and to captivate the people." [D'Auray, lower Bretagne, 16 July 1632]

     Among the leadership were Razilly, his relative d’Aulnay de Charnisay, and Nicholas Denys de la Ronde.  They group was said to be French Catholic, but their exact place of origin is unknown. He left them and supplies (livestock, arms & ammunition, seeds, tools, etc.) at La Have on Sept. 8. 

Acadian section of Champlain's 1632 map
Acadian section of Champlain's 1632 map
[Click on the image for a larger view]

1635 - RAZILLY DIES ... D'AULNAY & LATOUR "AT WAR"
     When Razilly died in 1635, his assistant Charles de Menou d'Aulnay, de Charnisay was prepared to assume control of Acadia.  Charles LaTour, however, had his own plans for Acadia.       LaTour had forts at Cape Sable, Saint John River, and Pentagouet.  He moved his headquarters from Cape Sable to Saint John in 1635. [Clark, p. 92]
     D'Aulnay also moved his base of operations.  La Have, which was reported to have 44 inhabitants in 1635 [Denys, Description, p. 482], had been Razilly's base.  Sometime between 1635 and 1640, d'Aulnay moved his group to Port Royal.  There is some evidence that some of the men (especially those who had married Indian brides) stayed behind.  The fort at La Have was later (1653) burned down by LeBorgne. 
    Perhaps they moved from La Have to Port Royal for agricultural reasons.  No salt marsh conversion is known of before 1635, though there was some after.  North Mountain provided protection to the area from the NW winds of winter, though Port Royal is actually colder than the east coast.  But agriculture actually came second to trading & fishing (though Denys said agriculture came before fur trading; and Razilly had also considered lumbering important).  D’Aulnay was looking for the rapid profits of fur trading, and since more fur was on the mainland, perhaps he wanted to move closer.  LaTour was already there.  So, the fur trade is probably what led d’Aulnay to move to Port Royal. [Clark, p. 92]

1636
     In the year 1636, we find just about the only surviving passenger list of people going to Acadia.  Though most of the names on the passenger list are absent when the first census is taken (1671), we do find a few Acadian progenitors aboard the St. Jehan, which left for Acadia on April 1, 1636.  Some familiar names are: Isaac PESSELIN dit CHAMPAGNE, Pierre MARTIN, Guillaume TRAHAN.
    For a transcribed list, as well as a copy of the actual ship list, go to the St. Jehan page.

Charles de Menou, Sieur d'Aulnay, de Charnisay
Charles de Menou d'Aulnay
(1596-1650)
    D'Aulnay was a sea captain who was first cousin to Razilly.  Born around 1596 near Loches, Touraine, France, his father was Rene de Menou, counselor of state for Louis XIII.  His father was seigneur de Billy et de Charnisay; and his mother owned the seigneury of d'Aulnay ... hence his other names. 
     D'Aulnay had arrived in Acadia on July 4, 1632 with Razilly.  He made yearly trips back to France to bring back goods and to recruit settlers.  Around 1638, he married Jeanne Motin, daughter of Louis Motin de Corcelles and Marie de Salins.  His 7 children returned to France, where the 3 daughters entered religious orders and the 4 sons later died in the military.

1640s
     There may have been new colonists from 1635 to 1640, as the colony moved from La Have to Port Royal.  The notarial records of La Rochelle list plenty of contrats d’engagement for Acadia.  Most aren’t found there by the 1671 census.  Emmanuel LeBorgne recruited 5 sawyers in 1645 and a gunsmith in 1646.  Guillaume Desjardins, the intendant of Charles LaTour, also recruited engages.  These included: a joiner and a gunsmith (1640), a mason, a baker, a sawyer, and a nailmaker-blacksmith (1641), and 22 laborers and soldiers (for Saint John; 1642.  In 1640, 25 men and 5 women signed up.  [Massignon, Les Parlers Francais, 1, p. 38-39].  In the ship list [at Francois Roux's site] for the St. Francois in 1641 shows the names of Jacques Bourgeois and Jehan Poirier. In “Les Gouvernors” by Couillard-Despres, he quotes from a list of 63 men who arrived on the Saint Clement in 1642 to help LaTour.  It’s estimated that there were 45-50 households at Port Royal and La Have.  This would mean 300-350 people, including about 60 single men. [Clark, p. 100]
     For the next 15 years, both LaTour and d'Aulnay maintained that they were in charge of Acadia.  D'Aulnay, who moved the settlement at La Heve to Port Royal, cultivated his area of Acadia, while LaTour worked in the Cap Sable and St. John River areas.  There may have been 100+/- inhabitants at the Saint John River, Cape Sable, Pentagouet and other posts in Maine in the mid 1640s.  Some of them may have come with LaTour in 1633.   They were mainly interested in trading, not agriculture. [Clark, p. 95]
     Nicolas Denys tried settling up a post at Miscou in the 1640s, but d'Aulnay forced him out. 
     In 1647, d’Aulnay destroyed LaTour’s fort at the Saint John and was confirmed as governor of Acadia.  LaTour left for exile in Quebec. [Clark, p. 93]
     When d’Aulnay died in 1650, LaTour returned as governor of Acadia. LaTour’s wife died after defending the Saint John fort, and he married d’Aulnay’s widow in a mariage de convenance.  He brought Lieut. Philippe Mius d’Entremont with him.  LaTour had to contend with d’Aulnay’s main creditor, Emmanuel LeBorgne, who had been d’Aulnay’s procureur-generale at LaRochellle, loaning him large sums. 

     Nicolas Denys took advantage of d'Aulnay's death and set up posts at St. Ann and St. Peters.  But Jeanne Motin soon kicked him out.

Continue to Acadia ... 1654 to 1670

Acadia: 1632-1653 * 1654-1670 * 1671-1689 * 1690-1709 * 1710-1729 * 1730-1748 * 1749-1758
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Copyright © 1997-09 Tim Hebert