Mathurin Dubé Ancestor

MATHURIN DUBE was born 1631 in Vault-Themer of Fontenay-the-Count, eveche,Lucon, Poitou, France, and died December 28, 1695 in Riviere Ouelle, Quebec, Canada. He married MARIE CAMPION September 03, 1670 in Ste. Famille, Quebec, Canada, daughter of PIERRE CAMPION and MARGUERITE HENAUT. She was born 1654, and died Bef. December 30, 1703. Mathurin Dube originated in the Vault of May, Near to the town of Fontenay, eveche of Lucon. Came to Canada about 1667 & lived at St. Jean, Isle of Orleans.

It has been 3 1/4 centuries since the Poitevin, MATHURIN DUBE, left his native village of Chapelle-Themer to try his luck in New France. Since this time long ago, there have always been Dubes in Canada and there still remain some who perpetuate, from generation to generation, the ancestral line in this humble village in the Vendee.


MATHURIN DUBE, the pioneer of the Canadian families bearing this name, arrived in New France around 1660, maybe even 1659, at the same time as Msgr de Laval, for whom he worked for several years. Even if the ancestor was not listed in the census of 1666 and 1667, it is certain that he lived in the Quebec region. On 22 June 1667 an act by notary Paul Vachon reveals that the bishop of Petree conceded his servant a piece of land, 3 arpents in frontage by half that in width, on the Ile d'Orleans, within the boundaries of the parish of Saint-Jean, facing the south bank of the Saint-Lawrence River. His neighbors were Pierre Michaud and Jacques Jehan. Three years later Mathurin declared himself ready to take a wife. The time was propitious since the King had just sent to this new country one of the largest contingents of his "daughters," under the direction of Anne Gasnier and Elisabeth Estienne, Mathurin needed a strong wife and he found her in Marie Campion, a young girl of 16 years. She had all of the qualitites required to raise a family in the difficult conditions of that time, when one needed much courage to set up a home and to succeed in living with only the raw materials which are found in nature.

"The King's Daughters, like their predecessors, wrote Silvio Dumas, were courageous. It is true that they came to Canada to try to build a better future than the one they had in France, but that takes nothing away from their courageous actions. Emigration to faraway colonies was unsympathetically viewed in the mother country at that time. They knew from the Jesuit reports that Canada had a severe climate, was closed to all communications for six months of the year, and was subject to damage from the Iroquois. To emigrate to this new country, which was described at times as "a place of horror", was perhaps an adventure to tempt the men but not the women. Those who came during this time of emigration left a country where it was good to live and which was, in addition, the best organized country in Europe; they left it to go to a far off colony without hope of seeing their native land again. So, we cannot deny that these women possessed a strong measure of courage." More about The King's Daughters at: http://users.adelphia.net/~frenchcx/filleroi.htm And the listing of their names: http://www.fillesduroi.org/Daughters/Filles/filles.html


Therefore, on 28 August 1670, MATHURIN DUBE, having discovered this rare pearl, needed the services of an expert in marriage contracts, the notary Romain Becquet. The contract revealed that our pioneer lived on the Ile d'Orleans and that he was the son of the late Jean Dube and Renee Suzanne, his father and mother, from "la Chapelle de May, near the town of Fontenay, diocese of Lucon." For her part, Marie Campion was the daughter of Pierre and of the late Marguerite Esnau (Henaut), her father and mother, from the town of Saint-Malo in Brittany (Ille-et-Vilaine).

The future spouses agreed to live in joinder as to property following the Coutume de Paris. Marie was endowed with the sum of 200 livres, and Mathurin acknowledged that she brought to the future household a sum equal to his and that half would belong to the estate, plus a sum of 50 livres that His majesty gave her in consideration of her marriage. As usual several witnesses took part in concluding this type of agreement. There was Anne Gasnier, widow of Jean Bourdon, former seigneur of Saint-Jean and of Saint-Francois and former procurer-general of the Sovereign Council; Louis Rouer de villeray, first councillor of the same tribunal; Elisabeth Estienne, Jean-Baptiste Gosset, and Claude Morin. All signed with the notary, with the exception of the future spouses, who made their mark.

The nuptial ceremony took place six days later in the parish of MATHURIN DUBE, Sainte-Famille on the Ile d'Orleans. A copy of the parish registry indicates, however, that the parents of the bride were from Saint-Nicaise de Rouen. Why this different origin than the one indicated on her marriage contract? Was Marie born in Saint-Malo? Did her parents later move to Rouen? This could be a plausible explanation.

The first six children of Mathurin and Marie were born on the Ile d'Orleans: four of whom were baptized at Sainte-Famille and the other two at Saint-Jean. It was in this last parish that the family was listed in the census of 1681. The master of the house was said to be 50 years old, and his wife 27; five children were counted: Mathurin, Madeleine, Louis, Pierre and Charles. The ancestor still worked only 3 arpents of land and kept but 1 cow; his immediate neighbors were Jean Moirier (Amaury) and Rene Asseline (Ancelin).

A little later, Mathurin signed 2 farming leases whose contracts were initialed at the home of notary Gilles Rageot, One, on 26 September, 1684, on behalf of Francois Magdelaine Ruette d'Auteuil et de Monceaux, councillor and procurer-general to the Sovereign Council; the other on 20 October, from Eleanore de Grandmaison, widow of Jacques Cailhaut de la Tesserie, former councillor to the same Council; all of this is to say that Mathurin was the farmer for these two important people, after having been the farmer for Msgr de Laval; this would also explain why he hardly had the time to enlarge the cleared portion of his own land.


The contract of 26 September marked the departure of Mathurin and his family. On 10 October he sold his land at Saint-Jean to Julien Dumont dit Lafluer. By this time he had already crossed the river to work the land of the seigneur of Auteuil at Grand-Anse, in the seigneurie of la Pocatiere. Proud of his seven year lease, Dube housed his family near to the seigneurial manor where he could use the bakehouse, the barn, the stable, as well as work the land and the fields. He had as neighbors Guillaume Lizot to the northeast, and Monsieur de Saint-Denis to the southeast. The lease specified that the tenant was to cultivate the land, to seed half of it and to raise as many cows as he could.

MATHURIN DUBE was the farmer of the seigneur of Auteuil when LeRouge surveyed this seigneurie in 1692. In his official report the latter wrote: "I have measured all the lands of the aforementioned seigneurie, both those of the domain and the conceded dwellings and those not conceded, namely; first, the domain which begins at a boundary marker which I planted that seperates the aforementioned seigneurie from that of Monsieur de Saint-Denis, and from the above mentioned marker I measured 14 arpents to the river where the mill is built, and from the aforementioned river to the dwelling of Guillaume Lizot there are 9 arpents 9 perches, and at the end of this I drew a line from the northeast to the southeast to a small hill, the above mentioned line making a separation from the previously mentioned seigneurie of Monsieur Auteil from the dwelling of Guillaume Lizot, and on the aforementioned line I planted 2 stone markers under which are buried some pieces of brick."

MATHURIN DUBE had his last 2 children baptized at Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pocatiere, but they seem to have died in infancy. However, 5 of his 6 offspring had families of their own. "MATHURIN DUBE, wrote Leon Roy, had barely finished his lease with the seigneurs of Pocatiere when he died at about 64 years of age. He was buried at Riviere-Ouelle on 30 December 1695. Marie Campion, his spouse, died before 30 December, 1703. Their sons Mathurin, Laurent, and Pierre established themselves in the first row of the seigneurie of Aulnaies, but the last apparently gave up his land to his brother Laurent before 1714 (no. 13 des Aulnaies). In 1723, son Pierre Dube had some property in the seigneurie of Lauzon and in 1728 he lived in the Montreal region, while his brother Louis lived in the parish of Notre-Dame-de-Liesse (of Riviere-Ouelle). Their only sister, Madeleine, lived at Pocatiere until the death of her husband, Jean Miville. (1672-1711).


Even though ancestor Mathurin Dube had an average size family-at that time eight children was not considered large-the four sons who took wives did better in the respect than their father. Louis, the second son, was the champion with about 20 offspring. In 1719 at the age of 42, he married Marguerite Lebel in a second marriage, who was the same age as his eldest son, 19 years old. He began, so to speak, to raise a second family. Here are some details concerning the 8 children of Mathurin Dube and Marie Campion:

1. Mathurin (b. 27 Jan 1672-?), Riviere-Ouelle, Que, married Anne Miville in 1691, then to Marie Dunn. He had 13 children from his first marriage, none from the second.

2. Marie-Madeleine (b. 17 Sep 1673), married Charles Bouchard in 1690. He drowned at the end of several weeks of married life, then she was married to Jean Miville (5 children) and to Gregoire Ouellet (1 son).

3. Louis (b. 19 MAY 1676-?), in Rivierre Ouelle, Que, married Angelique Boucher in 1697 (11 children) and married again to Marguerite Lebel ( 8 children).

4. Pierre (b. 8 DEC 1678-died before 1747), married Marie Therese Boucher in 1704 (9 children).

5. Charles (1680-destiny unknown). Died after the census of 1681.

6. Laurent (1683-1768), married Genevieve Boucher in 1706 (9 children).

7. Marie-Anne (born and died in 1691).

8. Jean Bernard (1684-probably died in the cradle).


In 1928 J. A. Dube, bookkeeper for the J.A. Larochelle firm of Quebec, began to search for the place of origin of his ancestors. Thanks to the information provided by two highly esteemed genealogists of his time, Msgr Amedee Gosselin and Father Archange Godbout, the researcher succeeded in locating the small village which for a long time, he had dreamed of visiting. There, he was privileged to meet the last surviving relative from the French family of his Canadian ancestor: Jules Dube, son of Louis. Nine years later, J.A. Dube returned to Chapelle-Themer in order to renew his ties of friendship with his cousins from France. Alas! Jules had left for another world in 1934 at the age of 72, but his mother, the wife of Louis, still lived and the local population was getting ready to celebrate her 100th birthday. In reality the venerable ancestress had turned 100 on 28 September 1937, but the village celebration was on 3 October. On the road which leads to Sainte-Hermine a la Caillere, near Beau-Raisin, at the crest of the road going down to the village of Magnils, and arch of triumph carried these words: "Honor to our centenarian."

"The small road, reports the author of the article, was changed into a lane of greenery and flowers. The village party held in her honor, that evening, took place in the large yard of Madame Dube and was a big success. It was there that Monsieur the Mayor, surrounded by all the council members and speaking for all his administrators, offered the centenarian the warmest congratulations. The musicians from la Chapelle and from Thire played selections in her honor. It appeared that Madame Dube herself was a part of the melody." Born in the village fo Magnils on 28 September 1837, Madame Dube was baptized two days later, made her first communion in 1847, was married on 14 July 1856, her husband died in 1924 and her son in 1934. We do not know exactly when Madame Dube died, but there were still some Dubes who lived in the community of Chapelle-Themer, somewhere between Sainte-Hermine and Frontenay-le-Comte. Some Canadians who recently finished a pilgrimage to the land of their ancestors have confirmed this.