Gérard Landry

In genealogy, all is about sharing.

When I went to see Antonio Lamdry, I also met this man… who wanted to meet me also.

Gérard Landry

Gérard had some photos of his ancestors and he wanted to share them  with me.

Only a few though.

He told me Louis Landry had a lot of pictures of his family. These pictures were in the possession of one of Gérard’s aunt when Louis Landry died. She gave them away to someone who liked old pictures and he did not want to give them back to the family…

Here are some of Gérard’s pictures. He made some photocopies just for me.

Louis-Jacques Landry and Alexina Grenier

The man is Louis Landry with his second wife Alexina Grenier. Alexina is the sister of Oliva Grenier, Louis’ first wife…

It happened a lot in those days where the widower would marry his first wife’s sister.

Louis or Louis-Jacques Landry had four children with Oliva: Maria, Omer, Louisa and Rénalda. He had seven children with Alexina: Lauria, Lauza,  Lauziana, Philippe, Philiza, George and Dorilla.

All the children appear in this picture…

The youngest daughter was Dorilla born in 1923.

Gérard invited me again to Acton Vale because he wanted to show me the cemetery where Maria was buried. He also wanted to meet someone…

I will talk about it next time.

Before leaving here is one picture that Gérard gave me.

Georges Landry and Appoline Poissant, Louis-Jacques’ parents

Georges and Appoline were married in 1853. They are Maria Landry’s grandparents.

Antonio Landry

Antonio Landry wanted to see me and I wanted to see him.

I phoned him around 10:45 and after a two-hour drive I arrived in Acton Vale.

Omer Landry, Antonio’s father, was Maria Landry’s brother.

Omer is in the medaillon on the bottom left. Above him is his father Louis Landry. Maria Landry is the woman on the extreme left.

She was my grandfather’s first wife. Léo Lagacé and Maria Landry were married in 1912.

mariage leo et maria 1912

1912 marriage 2

What Antonio told me was that my grandfather was quite someone: a singer, a dancer, a comedian. He was a real party guy.

Antonio never saw my grandfather, but he had heard a lot about him. He told me everybody liked him… and then he disappeard in an around 1920-1925. His father Omer Landry threw him out of the house because of the way he was behaving… drinking and gambling.

He and Maria were living at the hotel in St-Hyacinthe. They had a textile manufacture, but Leo lost everything to gambling. Maria’s father who had lend him money lost his farm.

They never saw him after Omer chased him away.

Almost 90 years later, Léo Lagacé’s grandson met Maria Landry’s nephew.

But I also met someone else…

I know a lot for someone who did not know a lot about his ancestors…

Two years ago I knew very little about my ancestors.

I wanted to know the reasons that led my father to cut all ties with his immediate family and also with his children.

While I won’t go into that subject, I can say that I now understand why my father acted the way he did.

His father Leo Lagacé Senior married Marie Landry in 1912. I thought she had died and that he had remarried Juliette Métayer in on around 1926 since my father was born in August 1927.

I tried desperately to find this marriage in several data banks but to no avail…

Guess what?

They never married… And this was in 1927!

How did I came across this information?

I met the nephew of Maria Landry this spring.

How did I contact him?

Since I entered Maria Landry’s file and all her ancestors on my Heritage genealogy site, I got a Smart Match. Someone had the file of one of Maria’s family members. I wrote this person and she gave me a phone number to call.

I picked up the phone and talked to a 84 years old man.

This man wanted to see me so he could tell me what he knew of my grandfather Leo Senior though he had never met him in person.

Next time, you will meet Antonio Landry, Maria Landry’s nephew.

Just to tease you, here is a picture of Antonio Landry.

Antonio Landry

Eugène Dubé

Maria Landry is my grandfather’s first wife. What’s the connection with Eugène Dubé?

Leo Lagace Senior and Maria Landry Landry were married on September 16, 1912.

In this page of the parish registers of Saint-Hyacinthe-le-Confesseur church it is said that Leo Lagace was the son of Stanislas Lagacé and Henriette Alexandre.

This is the bottom part of the page…

Stanislas is said to be a contractor living in Bristol, Connecticut, and Henriette Alexandre is deceased.

What about Eugène Dubé?

Now take a look at the other page…

The witness is Eugène Dubé.

At that time I did not know about the 1900 U.S. census available on the Mormons’ site. It’s only after that I connected the dots. Eugène Dubé led me to the U.S. censuses and this is how I found my grandfather…

Eugène is my grandfather’s brother-in-law. He married Lilie Lagacé one of Henriette Alexandre’s 13 children.

I managed to find 12 of her children. The one I did not find probably was born in the U.S. like Antoine and Stanislas II because I could not find any information in Notre-Dame des Neiges’ parish register where most of her children were baptized.

In the 1911 Canadian census I found both Eugène and Léo. Eugène was living with his wife and kids while Léo was a boarder in Léandre Gervais’ house.

Who is Léandre Gervais? Well we won’t get into that. Let’s just say he was living in the parish of Notre-Dame-des-Anges in 1881.

Next time who is Marie Landry? This is quite a story.

Is your name Lagacé, Lagasse, Lagace, Lagassi or Legacy…?

Is your name Lagacé, Lagasse, Lagace, Lagassi or Legacy…? Would your great-grandfather be Antoine or Anthony Lagacé or Tony Lagasse, Lagace, Lagassi or Legacy…?

Then this might be your lucky day.

Do you live in New England or know someone who lived in Bristol, Connecticut in 1900?

Then you might have ancestors who knew my great-grandfather or you might be a descendant of André Mignier dit La Gâchette, a French soldier who came to New France to defend the colony against the Iroquois…

My great-grandfather’s name is Stanislas Lagacé, but when he moved to Bristol Town, in Hartford county, Connecticut with his family, he changed his name to Dennis Lagassee. His wife Henriette Alexandre became Harriett and his two sons became Adlore and Leo.

This is an image of the 1900 U.S. census.

I came upon this image while I was searching for Eugène Dubé, Lili Lagacé’s husband… and lo and behold, I looked down and found a Leo Lagassee with the same birthdate as my grandfather, June 1888.

The rest is history. Adlore was in reality Adélard Lagacé, my grandfather’s brother born in 1880 with Dennis being Stanislas and Harriett being Henriette. All the dates correspond. Harriett (Henriette) had 13 children, 6 were still living in 1900.

How I found Eugène Dubé’s name in the first place?

And who is this Antoine Lagacé, Lagasse, Lagace, Lagassi, Lagassee or Legacy…?

Come back next time. This is a very long story.

More pictures of Édouard and also his family

These pictures were sent to me by Thérèse Métayer, my father’s cousin.

I met her through the person who sent me an e-mail about his great-grandfather he saw on my genealogy site.

Édouard Métayer

Édouard Métayer probably around 1927

Édouard devant la caserne 39

Édouard Métayer probably around 1920

She sent me more pictures.

This one…

enfants d'Édouard Métayer

some of Édouard Métayer’s children

My grandmother is the little girl in the middle. Her brother Paul is beside her. Since she was born in 1905 and Paul in 1907 we would be around 1913.

Malvina and Jeanne are in the back. Malvina was born in 1902 and Jeanne in 1903. Malvina had a twin sister who died at birth.

Paul died in 1928, four days after his father. He died from pneunomia. He was working in a garage and he was a chauffeur.

This woman is my great-grandmother Angélina Renaud.

Angélina Renaud

Angélina Renaud

We saw her in this picture.

famille Métayer

She died in 1940. Thérèse told me she was quite a character…

Thérèse had also this picture…

mère d'Angelina Renaud

Cordélia Monette

That woman is Angélina’s mother. Her name is Cordélia Monette. Her husband was Joseph Renaud. Joseph Renaud was a fire captain when Édouard became a fireman. When he first saw  him, he knew he had found a great husband for his daughter.

Cordélia Monette is one of eight great-great-grandmothers. And I know all their names.

Genealogy is a passion.

Next time I will talk about my Lagacé’s ancestors. I am the first amateur genealogist to link my Lagacé’s family branch to André Mignier dit La Gâchette. No one could find anything about my father’s parents because they never married…

My father was born out of wedlock so did all his brothers and sisters. Today this is common but in 1926 that was quite another story.

For someone who knew little about his family it seems now I know a lot…

This is Édouard’s genealogy file…

Click here…

This is Édouard’s file. Édouard is my great-grandfather, a man I never met but that I admire a lot…

The only thing I knew about him was that he died in 1928.

With Mister Courtemanche’s information, I looked for Édouard’s ancestors and this is what I found out…

His father was Édouard Elzéar Métayer.

Here is a picture of Édouard and his family in Montreal. I think it was taken around 1912.

famille Métayer

The person who sent me this picture is Édouard’s granddaughter. Her name is Thérèse Métayer.

She did not know me but someone she knows stumbled on my genealogy site and saw his great-grandfather’s file.

He wrote me an e-mail and the flood gate opened.

Édouard is in the second row on the right. His wife Angélina Renaud is beside him. His son Joseph is on the left.

In front are people Thérèse did not know, but I believe the old man in the middle is Édouard’s father who came to visit him.

Édouard Elzéar Métayer lived in the quartier Saint-Roch in Québec City. He married Philomène Dupont in Ste-Famille in l’Île d’Orléans on April 13, 1869. Édouard was born on October 5, 1869. If you count well there is a six month difference between the marriage and Édouard’s birth. Either Édouard was a premature baby or he was born out of wedlock…

When his father remarried in 1878, Delphine Chalifour, his new wife, did not care that much about his son-in-law so she told Édouard to go and live with his uncle in Montreal.

I believe this uncle is the man on the right in the first row. He would be François-Xavier Métayer but I don’t have a clue. The same is true about the identity of the man on the left. He looks like a Métayer, but Édouard did not have a brother, so he might be a cousin.

Next time when you come back to visit me, I will have more pictures that were sent to me by Thérèse Métayer about a man I knew almost nothing before I got hooked on genealogy.

How I found information about Édouard…

I never could understand why my father acted the way he did with his children and with his family.

When his father died on January 1, 1964, the whole Lagacé family died with him.

Leo Lagacé Senior was my grandfather. Here is his picture.

Léo Lagacé and two of his sons in 1933

Montreal 1933

Léo Lagacé Senior is with two sons, Léo Junior and Marcel. Marcel is in the wheelchair.

My father is in the back.

I believe my father loved his father a lot though he never told me.

I loved my father a lot though I never told him…

This is why I write a lot and don’t talk to much about how I feel.

Leo Senior married once in 1912. I thought his first wife died and that he had remarried with Juliette Métayer, Édouard’s daughter.

That’s what I thought.

Let’s go back to Édouard Métayer the man responsible for my quest about my ancestors.

I knew he was a fire captain in Montreal so I contacted someone in the fire department.

The man who contacted me was Mister Courtemanche, a retired fireman, working for le Centre d’histoire du Service incendie de Montréal.

He found the precious information I needed:  when and where Édouard was christened.

With that information the flood gate opened.

Next time, what I learned about Édouard.

But before I leave, I will tease you with this picture…

55 Concorde Ste-Thérèse vers 1940

1940

Searching for my father… through his family tree

Well this is it…

This is the picture of my father…

Léo Lagacé

May 10, 1950

After spending two years searching for answers, I finally found peace with my father, and Édouard Métayer was the one who help me without knowing…

Before I talk about my father, I will talk about Édouard Métayer, the great-grandfather I never knew and I never met, and who never thought he was going to help his daughter’s grandson finding his father.

Édouard Métayer was born in l’Île d’Orléans in 1869.

For those not familiar with the province of Québec, l’île d’Orléans is near Quebec City.

I had never been there before, but, in a way, Édouard made me go there.

My wife and I were travelling to Quebec City two years ago and I decided to take a long boat to China and cross the bridge between Québec City and l’île d’Orléans.

I went to Sainte-Famille and took this picture of the church my great-grandfather was christened.

église Ste-Famille

Sainte-Famille Church

Édouard was the child of Édouard-Elzéar Métayer and Philomène Dupont.

How did I manage to find those information?

I will tell you next time.

It’s a beautiful story.

How it all started…

This is the picture that is hanging on the wall of my office.

Edouard

Édouard Métayer

It is the picture of Édouard Métayer. He was a fireman and made captain in 1911.

Édouard is the father of my paternal grandmother Juliette Métayer.

Édouard died on April 2, 1928, on the eve of his 34th anniversary as a Montreal fireman.

The only memory I had as a child was a framed picture of this fireman in an old apartment on Mentana Street in Montreal back in the 1950′s.

My grandparents were living there. My grandsparents were poor and I knew little about them.

My grandmother Juliette had told me that her father, Édouard Métayer, had died when he tried to stop the horses while responding to a fire alarm. The horses were scared by a train that was coming.

Édouard died a month later.

That is all I knew. At that time, I was around seven or eight years old.

Fifty years later, after a lot of research, I know a bit more… well quite a lot more…

Édouard Métayer 022

1928

And everyday now Édouard Métayer is smiling at me in my office.

Edouard

This man is the reason I started looking for my ancestors.

Next time, I will show you another picture.