Why I Keep Writing This Blog…

Why I keep writing this blog?


I continue to enjoy your blog. Your recent photos of Dennis’ and Amanda’s children have been of special interest. My aunt had the Memorial Book from my grandmother’s funeral in 1956 and it has the list of those who “Called to Express Sympathy”. As I had done my Bristol records search back in 2001-02 I knew that Levi Lagasse and Victor LaGasse were the children of Dennis and Amanda Menard. As both men had attended my grandmother’s wake it is nice to see photos of them as young men.

Dennis Lagasse III and some of his sons

When reading your blog I have a tendency to think of them as Dennis II’s children. Today I realized that they were 1st cousins. Amanda and Caroline Menard, my great grandmother, were sisters, daughters of Rosalie Therrien and Pierre Zephrin Menard.

Thanks to everyone who contributes information and all those precious photos.


This is what I wrote back…

Hi Fran,

I continue to enjoy your e-mails and writing on the blog. At first it’s a little complicated with Dennis III and Dennis II,  but you get use to it.

I was really amazed by Donna’s contribution with her pictures of the Ritchie family. This really grows on you and I feel they are all a part of my growing family.

Keep reading and I will keep writing.


There is always some new information out there just waiting to be found. You just have to open that little metal box.

Good evening.

Feeling a little overwhelmed with the recent discovery of a metal box I came across in my mother’s belongings. It’s rich in history and has me at a loss for words. The box contains a copy of my grandparents marriage license. I’ll scan and send you a copy if needed for your blog. It also includes letters from the military regarding my uncles’ death and their enlistment and my grandfather’s discharge papers. Boggles my mind. One thing that has me curious is there are 2 letters from Father Paul of the Cross, La Trappe, P.Q. Canada. One letter is dated 1947, the second is dated in 1948. In both letters Father Paul is acknowledging receipt of money from my grandmother requesting masses be said for her sons William and Robert. I wonder why my grandmother requested those masses in Canada. What the connection was for those masses. My grandfather was born in Greenfield, Massachusetts while my grandmother was born in Bristol, Connecticut. Both uncles where born, in New Britain.

Guess some things will never be known.

William Ritchie and Robert Ritchie

Hector Who?

Hector Lamothe married Ida Lagasse on April 23, 1919.

I believe this is their wedding picture.


Levi Napoleon Lagasse, Diane Dubé?, Hector Lamothe?, Ida Lagasse

I believe this is their wedding picture, but then again I could be proven wrong down the line…

What I am sure of is that Ida Lagasse married Hector Lamothe. I am almost sure Hector is the last one in this line…


I think Odna Lagasse is holding her baby girl Helena. Odna’s husband Frank is behind. Ida Lagasse is next in line, then a mysterious young woman, then another one teasing us to identify who she is, Levi Napoleon whose grandson Dennis IV shared this picture and so many others with us, Diane Dubé, but not sure if she really is Diane Dubé, and finally Hector Lamothe.

Hector is the same man in the top row on the right. Frank Ritchie is on the left with the bow tie.


Here again Hector is seen in front between Frank Ritchie and Levi Napoleon Lagasse.


Odna is holding Ida. They must have been very close to each other as Frank, Hector and Levi Napoleon probably were.

The mysterious young woman is still taunting us with her smile.

One day we will find out who she was.


The baby girl on that picture must be Helena Ritchie.


Helena married George Arel.

They had these children.

George Arel Junior
Janice Arel
Judith Arel
Roger Arel
William Arel

Helena Ritchie and her children are part of the Ritchie clan.

family tree

Antoinette Lagasse Perkins Redux

I am not sure anymore about Alice Rose Lagasse being on this picture taken around 1917…

Move Over Girl on the Left

Not sure anymore since Donna sent this picture.

Lagasse family

Antoinette is on the left next to Odna. Bertha is in the middle then Ida and finally Alice.

I thought I would have no problem identifying Antoinette who is my first cousin once removed. Antoinette is in front between Ida and Joseph on this picture sent in 2011 by Dennis Lagasse IV. Alice Rose is on the right with the big smile.

picture from Dennis 1.1

Antoinette is Toni according to Donna.

One of her sisters was named Mary and the youngest was Antoinette “Toni”.  Those are the two I remember knowing in my youth.

That was the only picture I had of “Toni” until Donna sent this one…

Lagasse family

Now I am not sure if Alice Rose is in front on this picture. She looks like Antoinette.


So many people begging to find their descendants like Hector Lamothe who I think is at the end of the line.


– Harold! Time to go to bed!
– Mother, I’m looking for Grandma…

Antoinette Lagasse 1960



Donna’s Still Reading the Blog…


– Harold, your supper is cold!
– Donna still reading the blog Mom!

I am glad she is still reading the blog.

I am also glad she sent me this message with a picture to go along.

Lagasse family

Antoinette, Odna, Bertha, Ida and Alice


I’m still reading your blogs when I can.  Wish I had more time to devote to all the ancestry things, it does fascinate me.  I was going through some files this morning and came across an interesting picture of my grandmother (Odna) and her surviving siblings.  There’s no date on the picture but it appears to have been taken in the late 50s early 60s.  The individuals I can identify are in the front, left to right (Antoinette, Odna, Bertha, Ida and Alice).  Not sure of the men in the back.  I know they’re brothers, but not sure who is who.

Most beautiful picture of eight of the eleven children of Dennis Lagasse III and Amanda Ménard: Antoinette, Odna, Bertha, Ida and Alice… and Levi Napoleon, Victor Philippe and Harvey.

You remember Harvey don’t you?

The little boy on that picture with his grandfather and his big sister Marie Rose Elmira taken around 1895.

picture from Dennis 2

Here he is again on the right on a picture sent my Marianne…

Harvey William Lagasse

I know Marianne will be glad to see this new picture of her great-grandfather!

I wonder if Marianne still reads this blog. I know Dennis IV does.

Lagasse family identification

But You Have to Know When to Stop

Genealogy can be time consuming.

So learning when to stop is all important.

Searching for ancestors is the same as playing video games.


– Harold, for the last time, your supper will be cold!
– I’ll be there soon Mother…

It’s all about getting a dopamine rush.

I just had one yesterday when someone wrote a comment on one of my other blogs.

It was about his uncle who was a Spitfire pilot in WWII.


Walter Neil Dove


Then click here


Guess what? Wes is also interested about his ancestors!

Christopher Dove

Christopher Romine Dove

Frère de grand-mère Ritchie

Just this caption on an old picture.

Frère de grand-mère Ritchie

I don’t make up these things.


Frère de grand-mère Ritchie (Mireault)

Frère de grand-mère Ritchie

I knew nothing about these people on that picture except what was written by someone probably 50 years ago…

zoom Frère de grand-mère Ritchie (Mireault)frère de grand-mère Ritchie (Grandma Ritchie’s brother)

Serge Ritchie sent it. He wanted my help to find who this family was. I can’t refuse anything to Donna’s distant cousin.

According to Serge, that picture was probably part of Maria Ritchie’s collection of old pictures. Maria is the woman on the left next to an uncle from the U.S.

She probably wrote the caption.

12- Un oncle USA, Maria Ritchie, Lawrence Ritchie, Frank Ritchie

Serge got most of his old pictures from a son of Maria. 

So what about this family we know so little about except that the man is the frère de grand-mère Ritchie?

Frère de grand-mère Ritchie (Mireault)

Serge Ritchie and I have been working hard to find out.

I think I have found who this family is. The man’s name has be to Mireault if he is Delphine Mireault’s brother.

These are Delphine’s siblings that we have found since last week…

Justine Mireault 1832 – 1908
Delphine Mireault 1833 – 1834
François Mireault 1835 – 1836
Delphine Mireault 1836 – 1916
Émilie Mireault 1838 –
Olive Mireault 1841 –
Domithilde Mireault 1843 – 1843
Joseph Hormidas Mireault 1844 –
Adéline (Célina) Mireau 1847 –
Julienne Mireault 1848 –
Ulric Mireault 1849 –
Elzéar 1852
Patrick Mireault 1853 –
François Delphise Mireault 1855 –
Eucher Ludger Mireault 1857 –

At first we had only Delphine to work with, but we started digging.

Delphine had two brothers when we started our search.

François Mireault 1835 – 1836
Joseph Hormidas Mireault 1844 –

I looked for Joseph born in 1844, but he probably died in 1898 according to Serge.

Joseph Mirault 1898-11-26

We hit a dead end.

Then Serge found one more brother in someone’s family tree on Ancestry.

Eucher Ludger Mireault 1857 –

Then I found another brother in the 1852 Canadian census.

Ulric Mireault 1849 –

1852 Chertsey Township

And two more… in the 1881 Canadian census in Mountain, Marquette, Manitoba, under the name of Miro.

Patrick Mireault 1853 –
François Delphise Mireault 1855 –

1881 frères Mero

Then Serge had a breakthrough! Someone on Ancestry had this information in his family tree…

Joseph Frederic Alonzo Mireault (1894-1963), son of Eucher Ludger (Edgar) Mireault and Angèle Poulin…

This clue led me to this 1901 census page in Treherne, Manitoba.

1901 recensement Manitoba famille Mero

Alonzo was there with a lot of siblings! 

1901 recensement Manitoba famille Mero zoomPatrick Mero (Mireault, Miro), a farmer, is the head of the family and he is single. His brother Edgar (Eucher Ludger) and his family are living with him.

Could it be this family?

frère de grand-mère identification

Are we certain we have the right people?

When searching for other people’s ancestors you are never certain…

But that’s the fun part because it never stops.

This, Will Never Stop!

Serge Ritchie is as much addicted to genealogy as I am!

That’s quite an understatement coming from me.

Serge and I are teaming up to look for descendants of William Ritchie

William Ritchie 1830-1894


Delphine Mireault zoom

Delphine Mireault.

I wonder if Donna is still reading this blog about her ancestors.

She is the one who sent this…

family treeShe sent it in five parts, and I pieced it up together using Paint.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

That document was made in 1980 by Clarence Hogan who was the son of Ida Ritchie.

Ida Ritchie

Clarence had done some great work with the Ritchie family!

In 1980, I had just started to have a faint interest in genealogy when my daughter was born in early December 1979. I had asked my mother for a few information about her ancestors.

This would become somewhat precious when in 2007 my brother brought me this picture.

Honoré Sauvé etJulie Leroux

This is how my addiction came to be.

I don’t drink, gamble, smoke or take drugs (only for my slight high blood pressure).

I have found so much since 2007, and so much more since September 2009 when I had this crazy idea of creating an English version of my blog Nos ancêtres to reach out down south of the border to find some relatives.

This is how Serge found me in March 2012 when I wrote about the Ritchie brothers who died in WWII.

William Ritchie and Robert Ritchie

So you see, this, will never stop! 

How all This Search Started in the First Place

All this search about the Ritchie family started with this picture.

scan0048It was file scan0048 from Robin on the West Coast.

At first I thought that scan0048 was Edna Lagasse the daughter of Dennis Lagasse III and Amanda Ménard. I had just a name in my databank. Edna became Odna Lagasse a Gold Star Mother, and then she became Odna Lagasse Ritchie seen on this picture next to Frank Ritchie, thanks to Donna who knew a lot about her and the Ritchie family.

Odna Lagasse with brother Levi Napoleon and Ida Lagasse

Here are some of the scanned pictures Robin scanned in 2010. The above picture was on it.

I always like to tell my readers that Robin and I are not related. Her husband is. He is probably not interested in genealogy. Robin never told me.

Anyway I am glad Robin scanned these…

Robin is addicted to old pictures like your hostblogger, and Serge Ritchie.

Want some proof?

I knew you would.

Six of the fourteen children of William Ritchie and Delphine Mireault.

Serge told me he has pictures of 12 out of the 14 children. He is still looking for the missing two.

As a footnote to this post, Serge sent me this picture last night.

Frère de grand-mère Ritchie (Mireault)

caption: frère de grand-mère Ritchie

The man could be Delphine Mireault’s brother.

This is how all searches start in the first place…

Delphine Mireault 1836-1916

Serge Ritchie has hundreds and hundreds of old pictures on his Ancestry site.

728 pictures to be exact!

But this is the only picture Serge Ritchie has of Delphine Mireault the wife of William Ritchie. 

Delphine Mireault zoom 1

Serge would really want someday to have a picture of his great-great-grandmother Delphine.

This is the reason why I am writing about the Ritchie family on this blog with Serge’s permission.

This is a zoom out of this picture…

Delphine Mireault zoom

which is a close-up of this one.

Delphine Mireault

The man is Eddy Ritchie who is a grandson of Delphine. Serge won’t probably never be able to find a picture of his great-great-grandmother Delphine, but we have got to try don’t we?

Donna probably does not have one.

Serge asked me to ask her. I have decided to ask her on this blog instead and to show her some interesting pictures from Serge’s collection of old pictures.

3- Oncle des USA, Frank Ritchie, Lawrence Ritchie petit enfant Claude Dupras

Visiting uncle from the U.S. on the left

12- Un oncle USA, Maria Ritchie, Lawrence Ritchie, Frank Ritchie

Visiting uncle from the U.S. on the left

o-8859-1-Q-8-_Herv=E9_Ritchie=2C_Philom=E8ne_Latendresse_Ritchie=2C_F-= rank Ritchie, une cousine Mariane

Visiting cousin from the U.S. on the right (Marian?)

I am sure Donna is going to keep reading this blog for quite sometime…