The Hubou and the Neveu Dossiers – Part Two

How was the voting?

First poll on Our Ancestors…

Vote Our Ancestors

Vote same man

Then on my French version of Our Ancestors…

Vote Nos ancêtres II

Little to go on isn’t?

If the groom Wilfred Nevue was around 30 years-old in 1886, then it is quite possible Wilfred Nevue is the same man as Wilfrid Neveu, the son of Maxime Neveu and Scholastique Lauzon. If the groom is 20 or 25,  then I think we should let it go…

Michel Lauzon has been looking for Wilfrid Neveu at least since 2013, but he lost track of him after Wilfrid appeared in the 1861 Canadian census. After 1861 Wilfrid is nowhere to be found. Did he die when he was young or did he leave his family for the United States before the 1871 Canadian census?

Michel and I tried very hard to find out.

Wilfrid Neveu was born on February 14th, 1856 in Ste-Sophie, Quebec, Canada. Michel has found almost everything about the Neveu family and he even wrote a blog about it.

Someone else has been searching for Wilfred Nevue. Wilfred was her grandfather who had married Celina Delongchamp in 1886. Susan told me this was a shotgun wedding.

I had to check Wikipedia…

Celina and Wilfred's Wedding Photo.jpg

A shotgun wedding is a wedding that is arranged to avoid embarrassment due to premarital sex possibly leading to an unintended pregnancy, rather than out of the desire of the participants. (Wikipedia)

Wilfred Nevue would later leave her young wife and his baby son six months after his son’s birth. Susan has been searching for her grandfather’s parents, and her links to her Neveu ancestors.

Michel and I have been trying very hard to help Susan but to no avail.

Sometimes we should let it go…

Wilfred Nevue

Wilfred Nevue and Celina Delongchamp had only one son seen here second on the left in the first row. Wilfred is with his uncles John Lewis and Alfred Delongchamp, and his aunts Eloise and Nellie Delongchamp. The two girls on Wilfred’ right are Jennie and Victoria Blair.

Wilfred’s mother Celina would die in 1896.

This little boy will tell his story in a book written by his granddaughter Susan…

A Boy's Päradise

back cover

Book reviews

Fascinating book that provides an historical account of the hard life on the farm in the 19th Century. My life on the farm in the 1930s was somewhat the same

This is such a delightful and intriguing read. Being invited into the detail of life on farm in Up Michigan in the 1800s, and into a young boy/man’s view of the world in such detail is really a treat. Almost an answer to Laura Ingalls Wilder, but with a lot of detail paid to the day to day activities and how people get by. The writing is quick and moves between very specific step by step detail of chores and farm tasks to well placed anecdotes. A high point is the description of the French Canadian New Years celebration. Definitely a really lovely insight into a time gone by and a very specific time and place.

This book is a delightful read and a real look at what life was like on a farm at the start of the 20th century. A far cry from life today but an intriguing story of how it must have been for our ancestors. A valuable read for all of us.

A Boy’s Paradise lets the reader experience the tenderness and harshness of farm life in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula around the turn of the last century. From step by step accounts of harvesting and hunting to descriptive paragraphs about school days and French Canadian traditions, this book explains a culture and geography not understood by many.

About letting it go… 

Wilfrid Neveu’s brother Thomas Neveau had three sons: Thomas, James, and Joseph.

montage of Wilfred Nevue and sons of Thomas Neveau brother of Wilfrid Neveu

Time for another poll?


Yesterday’s Poll Disappeared!

See what I mean… (it’s back on again…)

One more time and we’ll quit.

Maybe Polldaddy has been hacked?

Please vote in the comment section instead.

The Hubou and the Neveu Dossiers – Part One

This is how the two dossiers started. A wedding photo of Wilfred Nevue and Celina Delongchamp.

Hercule Poirot

I will need some help with this mes amis.

Could the groom be the son of Maxime Neveu seen here with his wife Scholastique Lauzon, and their daughter Léocadie with her husband and their children?


Maxime Neveu and Scholastique Lauzon are posing for posterity with their daughter Léocadie and her husband Joseph Girard. I have made this montage for their children.

Neveu family

What help does our famous detective wants? He wants to know how old is the groom before proceeding further with the case.

Wilfred Nevue

Please vote…

The Hubou and the Neveu Dossiers – Introduction

Our detective friend has taken up a new case, in fact two cases.

Hercule Poirot

Dit names are so confusing mes amis…

Someone has asked me about dit names. Dit names are so confusing especially when French Canadians changed their names when they emigrated to the United States in the 1800s and early 1900s.

Maxime Neveu and Scholastique Lauzon
with their daughter Léocadie and her husband Joseph Girard
with their children

This was the case of some of Mathieu Hubou’s descendants who moved in the 1870s from St-Paul-l’Ermite in Quebec to Michigan. Most of them had not the faintest idea that their ancestor’s name was in fact Hubou and not Deslongchamps.

Our detective friend remembers very well the Robert Miller’s dossier on which he spent more than five years to solve.

Hercule Poirot

Ah oui! The Robert Miller dossier… How could I forget this dossier!

Robert Miller was the son of Joseph M Lagasse and Edwina Newcity. First I only had a name and a headstone to work it.

Who could this Edwina Newcity be?

My little brain cells began acting up. Could Newcity be the americanized name for Villeneuve?

Of course it was!

And the rest became crystal clear.

Joseph M Lagasse stood for Joseph Miller Lagasse. Miller was the americanized name for Meunier.

Lagasses or their real name Lagassés or Lagacés were all descendants of André Mignier dit l’Agacé a soldier in the Carignan Salières Regiment sent to New France to defend the colony against the Iroquois.

The name Mignier dit l’Agacé became Lagacé dit Mignier or Mignier dit Lagacé or Lagacé dit Meunier or Meunier dit Lagacé. Also to confuse even more, Mignier was sometimes written Minier…

Still confused mes amis? This is only an easy example.

So what about the names Hubou dit Delongchamp and Neveu also written Nepveu and Nevue or Neveau, etc…?

Stay tuned mes amis because this could take more than five years to solve and find out who really was Robert Miller…

More on the dit names on this Website…


dit name is essentially an alias, or alternate name, tacked on to a family name or surname. Dit (pronounced “dee”) is a French form of the word dire, which means “to say,” and in the case of dit names is translated loosely as “that is to say,” or “called.” Therefore, the first name is the family’s original surname, passed down to them by an ancestor, while the “dit” name is the name the person/family is actually “called” or known as.

Dit names are found primarily in New France (French-Canada, Louisiana, etc.), France, and sometimes Scotland. They are used by families, not specific individuals, and are usually passed down to future generations, either in place of the original surname, or in addition to it. After several generations, many families eventually settled on one surname or the other, although it isn’t uncommon to see some siblings within the same family using the original surname, while others carried on the dit name. The use of dit names slowed dramatically during the mid- to late-1800s, although they could still be found used by some families into the early twentieth century.


In April, Dennis Lagasse IV sent me 43 negatives that I turned into 43 positives. Some were too blurry to start figuring out who’s who even with a lot of imagination.  Little did I know back in April I would find who were some of them.

Four women on a road with two children playing in the background.

Men working in a factory…

A woman on the grass…

Amanda Ménard on a Monday morning?

Is that snow on the ground?

I had never seen this man before…

Looks to be an older Levi Napoleon Lagasse?

Irène Dubé ? and her cousin Ida Lagasse…

Five women and a little girl…

A young teenage girl…

A woman with a man with a handicap…

unknown couple 1

Two girls…

Levi Napoleon Lagasse in the back, his older brother Harry in front of him, other men unknown…



Two childdren…

Time for a swim?

Stuck in the mud…

Blandine Lamothe and probably her daughter Lucille…

Blandine Lamothe and Ida Lagasse…

Mae Cox and her son Harvey Lagasse Jr….

Marie-Louise Dubé, Dennis’ grandmother…

Marie-Louise Dubé with son Lionel, Dennis’ father…

Marie-Louise Dubé with son Lionel, Dennis’ father…


Levi Napoleon Lagasse?

Levi Napoleon and unknown man…


Levi Napoleon Lagasse…

Levi Napoleon Lagasse?

Levi Napoleon Lagasse…

Levi Napoleon Lagasse?


Ida Lagasse?

Ida Lagasse and Harvey Lagasse Jr.

Bertha Lagasse, one of Malvina Lagasse’s daughter? and two cousins? 





Ford Trimotor

Harvey Lagasse Jr.


Bertha Lagasse


Dennis told me in April he had more. One day I know he will find the time to scan the rest of the negatives and share them.

About Thanksgiving

I am sure many people think of their ancestors when it’s Thanksgiving Day. I know I do when it’s Thanksgiving Day in Canada on the second Monday of October. I have gotten a lot of thanks from readers since 2009 when I started Our Ancestors. I also thanked many people who have shared old pictures of their ancestors even if sometimes they did not know who they were.
Lucille Lestage’s mother was one of them.

Lucille Lestage

Lucille Lestage back

Lucille was 16 years-old on September 1st, 1925. She had sent her photo to her Aunty and Uncle Bleau.


I knew Lucille was the daughter of Flavie Alexandre and Charles Lestage, but that was all I knew. I had found everything about Flavie Alexandre whose photo was shared by a third cousin in 2010. At that time she did not know who these young ladies were and even thought of throwing their pictures away as well as other old pictures she had.

Phoebe Alexandre and Myra Alexandre - sisters

Then someone shared more than 100 photos. Most were about the Comes, the Bleaus, and the Alexanders, but there was this one with a caption on top. Aunt Phoebe and Aunt Myra

It was the photo of Flavie (Phoebe) and her sister Myra Alexander (Alexandre). This is how I was able to find everything about Myra’s descendants, but little about Flavie and her daughter Lucille.

about-late-1890s-bristol-conn - Phoebe Alexandre

Flavie Alexandre

Phoebe Alexandre

Flavie Alexandre

Undetered, I left no stones unturned. Later I found Flavie’s birth record, but I did not know when she had died until this Thanksgiving Day: she died on June 1st, 1922.

File Flavie Alexandre

The day before Thanksgiving I had just learned what had happened to Lucille.

File Lucille Lestage

Lucille died in 1943, and there were no descendants to write me about for her.


My cousin Dennis had shared some negatives last April from his father’s collection, and I had made positives out of them.

He had this one. Four lovely young women in winter in the late 1910s or early 1920s.

I think Bertha Lagasse was on it. She is in the back row on the left. I guess she was not yet married. On the right I believe is one of Malvina’s daughters. The young lady looks like her mother.

She also looks like someone else on this picture. She is in front of Napoleon Levi Lagasse. If this is Blandine in front with Lucille, then this photo can be dated and it was taken in 1930.

The young woman is either the same young woman or her sister. She is again seen here. Joseph Dewey is there with Blandine Lamothe in front.

I like to work with montages.

My grandaunt Malvina had 5 children, one boy and four daughters: Joseph Dewey (1898), Irene (1899), Alice (1901), Beatrice (1903), and Marie-Louise (1906). I had found them in the 1910 US census living with their mother and my great-grandfather Dennis Lagasse II.

In the 1930 US census, Irene, 30 years-old was still living with her mother Malvina. Irene was painting dials at the clock factory, and she is still unmarried. The census was done in April. Malvina would have just 8 months to live. She would die on December 20 which was on Irene’s 31st birthday.

When we look closely at the census page we see lots of information about the people and who were the neighbors. Joseph Dewey Dubé was there with Blandine and Lucille. Amanda Ménard was there with his son Levi and three lodgers. Below on the page was Malvina and Irene and the neighbors are Joseph Englert and Marie-Louise Dubé, Malvina’s youngest daughter.

My hypothesis is that Irene Dubé is on this photo with Bertha.

Irene would later marry John J Blanchette. I have not found when they were married or any of their children yet. Maybe Susan will have something to ask Lucille when she meets her next week.

Back to square one?

Back to square one with this photo I have written about a dozen times? 

Back to square one?

Well not quite. Four out of five is quite good. I even got the make of the car right.

I am more a World War II airplane expert than an expert on 1917 Ford Model T.

I am still wondering if Hector Lamothe seen here was the car owner. I know for sure we are in Connecticut in 1917. Hector Philias Lamothe emigrated with his parents and the whole family in 1915 from St-Guillaume d’Upton.

Old photos are addictive. Just see people’s reactions when they see some old photos and then try to figure out who’s who. Kind of funny sometimes with everyone’s theory.

I have been addicted to old pictures since 2007. I have thousands of them, several hundreds still waiting to tell their stories. I just want to know the story behind each photo like this one where a car is seen stuck in the mud.

Or what is the story behind this picture of a Ford Trimotor.

Old photos are like time machines but people won’t talk back. You have to make them talk. So what about this old photo?

I can’t ask these people who they are, and what they were doing in 1917… Right?

I am not 100% sure anymore if Rose Elmira Lagasse is really behind the wheel. It could well be her mother Amanda Ménard instead. I am 100% sure Bertha Lagasse is on the right rear fender, and since last week I am almost 100% sure my grandaunt Lillie is in front with her sister Malvina behind her.

But then who is behind the woman behind the wheel whom I thought all along was Malvina Lagasse? She is again seen here laughing at the “real” Malvina holding up her head in dispair while her brother Dennis is trying to tell her how to start the car.

Who could she be? She has to be a family member since she had been invited to Bertha’s wedding on November 16, 1921.

My only wild guess is that she might be my grandaunt Marguerite Lagasse, born in 1868, Malvina and Lillie’s sister. The only problem with that theory is that she was not living in Connecticut, but in St-Hyacinthe in the province of Quebec.

Maybe she hitched a ride to see her siblings…?

One clue is what my aunt Fleurette Lagacé once told me. She had seen Marguerite once as a child in the 1930s, and she said that Marguerite was a heavy-built woman.

So what options do I have? Is she or is she not Marguerite Lagasse who married Philippe Lord, and whose son Aldéi Lord sent an ashtray to his cousin Levi Napoleon Lagasse?

Next time, Susan will tell me more about her grandmother Blandine Lamothe and her daughter Lucille Dubé.

Don’t get me wrong…

I know you might get confused with my attempts to identify who were people on old photos shared by second and third cousins.


I know what I am doing on Our Ancestors. I had so many familiar faces on old photos, but they were without names.

Last week I finally found who they were. Well most of them.

I would not have been able to identify my grandaunt Malvina seen above, next to Anna Campbell, nor this young married couple below without Susan’s help. This lovely wedding picture opened the floodgates.

Genealogy is not a science even if you use hypotheses to figure out who’s who on old pictures. I have been proven wrong so many times when I was trying to identify your ancestors like all these people back in 2011.

Levi Napoleon and Ida Lagasse were no brainers, but others were unknown in 2011. I like the challenge and I will often stick my neck out. I also like to be challenged by my readers like Teresa Pease who had helped me with Bertha and her enigmatic Mona Lisa smile sitting on a Ford Model T right rear fender.

Move Over Girl on the Left

Case in point…?
Odna Lagasse, whom I first thought was Ida, is seen here with her husband Frank Ritchie.
Is this Odna with her first daughter Helena Ritchie?

Or is she Blandine Lamothe with her baby daughter? If she is Blandine, then who is the baby girl? Is she Lucille Dubé born in May 1929, Lillian Dubé born in October 1930, or Alice Dubé born in September 1935?

I would go out on a limb and say it is baby Lucille, that her father Joseph took the picture in the summer of 1930, and Blandine is soon expecting Lillian.

Still confused?

If you are, feel free to write a comment in the comment section. I always answer back.