Friday, March 9, 2012

A Seigneur (Feudal Lord) in Quebec – Noël Morin

B. about 1609 in St-Etienne de Brie, France
M. 9 Jan 1640 in Quebec City, New France
Wife: Hélène Desportes
D. 10 Jan 1680 in Montgamy, New France
Emigrated: before 1640

Noël Morin was born in about 1609 in St-Etienne de Brie, France which is near Paris. His parents were Claude Morin and Jeanne Moreau. Noël had some education and was trained as a wheelwright. Nothing else is known of his early years or whether he had any siblings. His mother died before his migration to New France, as it is described that he inherited a house from her "located at Brie-Comte-Robert where hangs a sign with the blue horse in the parish of St-Etienne.”

Noël first appeared on the records in Quebec City when he contracted to marry Hélène (Desportes) Hébert, a 19 year-old widow on December 27, 1639. She was the daughter of two very early settlers in Quebec, Pierre Desportes and Françoise Langlois, and was credited with being the first European child born in Canada. The wedding took place on January 9, 1640, and was attended by many important colonists, including Robert Giffard, Jean Jolliet, Jean Bourdon, Father Jean Lasueur, and Guillaume and Louis Couillard. Noël gave his bride a dowry of 200 livres. She also had a house of her own near the church of Notre-Dame in Quebec City. Noël and Hélène had 12 children together, born between 1641 and 1656.

In 1645, Noël bought 50 arpents of land in Côteau Sainte-Geneviève, an area in Quebec City. Within 20 years, he built several structures on the land including a house, a shop and a barn. In 1650, he hired someone to help build his house for 250 livres; the finished building was 20 by 30 feet. In 1653, Governor Lauzon of New France ceded a large piece of land to Noël, making him a seigneur, meaning he was a feudal lord, which in Quebec meant he collected taxes from his tenants, but didn't have the power to impose fines on them. He called his fiefdom Saint-Luc, and gave himself the title Sieur de Saint-Luc. This property was eventually divided among his family.

On May 17, 1655, Noël and Hélene were “granted a pew by the Fabrique of Quebec.” In return, Noël gave up 2 arpents of land, which later became the site of the Citadel of Quebec. In 1673, Noël was given the commision to make wooden mountings for 24 canons in Quebec City. He was paid 960 livres for the project. As he began the work, Noël wrote, "I am familiar with these cannons in the Upper and Lower town."

After Hélène died in 1675, Noël turned to his son Jean-Baptiste to take care of him in his old age, giving him 1,500 livres in return. Noël died on January 10, 1680 at the home of his son Alphonse in Montmagny. He was buried in a crypt at St-Thomas.

Famous descendants of Noël Morin include Céline Dion.

1. Agnes-Marie Morin – B. 21 Jan 1641, Quebec City, New France; D. 30 Aug 1687, Quebec City, New France; M. (1) Nicolas Gaudry dit Bourbonniere (1621-1669), 17 Nov 1653, Quebec City, Quebec; (2) Ignace dit Beaupre Bonhomme (1647-1711)

2. Germain Morin – B. 15 Jan 1642, Quebec City, New France; D. 20 Aug 1702, Quebec City, New France

3. Louise Morin – B. 27 Apr 1643, Quebec City, New France; D. 28 Apr 1713, Quebec City, New France; M. Charles Cloutier (1629-1709), 20 Apr 1659, New France

4. Nicolas Morin – B. 26 Apr 1644, Quebec City, New France; D. 1667, Quebec City, New France

5. Jean-Baptiste Morin – B. 25 May 1645, Quebec City, New France; D. 12 Dec 1694, Quebec City, New France; M. Catherine Belleau (1639-?), 22 Nov 1667

6. Marguerite Morin – B. 29 Sep 1646, Quebec City, New France; D. 17 Oct 1646, Quebec City, New France

7. Helene Morin – B. 30 Sep 1647, Quebec City, New France; D. 20 May 1661

8. Marie Morin – B. 19 Mar 1649, Quebec City, New France; D. 8 Apr 1730, Quebec City, New France

9. Alphonse Valcour Morin – B. 13 Dec 1650, Quebec City, New France; D. 30 Aug 1711, St-Thomas, New France; M. (1) Marie-Madeleine Normand (1651-1690), 10 Feb 1670, Quebec City, New France; (2) Angelique Destroismaisons (1670-1744), 1700

10. Noël Morin – B. 12 Oct 1652, Quebec City, New France; D. 1718, New France

11. Charles Morin – B. 30 Aug 1654, Quebec City, New France; D. 4 Oct 1671, Quebec City, New France

12. Marie-Madeleine Morin – B. 29 Dec 1656, Quebec City, New France; D. 22 Jul 1720, Quebec City, New France; M. Gilles Rageot (1642-1692), 29 May 1673, Quebec City, New France

Our French-Canadian Ancestors, Gerard Lebel (translated by Thomas J. Laforest), 1990
Wikipedia article on the Seigneurial system of New France
GeneaStar: Famous Family Tree and Genealogy [website]

1 comment:

  1. Noel is my 8th great grandfather Thank you for sharing