b: 1634 St. Martin-de-Louin, Parthenay, Lucon, Poitiers, Poitou, France
d: 22 June 1699 Champlain, Quebec, Canada
b: 22 June 1699 Champlain on the shores of the St. Lawrence River
m: 9 June 1663 Trois Rivieres, St. Maurice, Quebec, Canada

Coming to America

Louis Tetreau, the son of Mathurin and Marie Bernard, he was b. ca: 1635 in a small French locality called Louin and of which is the parish church under the jurisdiction of St. Martin. Today, Louin is part of the township of Saint-Loup-Lemaire, Parthenay, in the department of Deux-Sevres. Louin is still in the diocese of Poitiers, ancient capital of Poitou.

Louis decided to try an adventure to the New World. He appears in our history about the age of 24. He was illiterate and sometimes called "Dittereau".

The arrival of Louis Tetreau to Trois-Rivieres did not go unnoticed, as he had red hair and his tongue hung out.

Jean Buissoneau, a miller who lived at Cap-de-la-Madeleine, presented himself, on 23-01-1662, before Pierre Boucher, to declare under oath, that in the middle of 1660, one of his friends, named Jacques, a relative of Louis Tetreau, had declared that the latter had been married in France, and that he was the father of a daughter and that he had even worked with him at La Rochelle, etc. Was this just gossip, jealousy, or a joke? This silly text had no follow ups, but it does help to show the date of arrival of Louis Tetreau in Canada, ca. 1660.

In the summer of 1662, the 12th of Sept. Jean Lemoyne, inhabitant of Trois-Rivieres, since six years, and Louis Tetreau, his farmer, found themselves before the notary Louis Laurent. The accuser declared that his employer made him a bunch of nice promises and laughed at him and made him work for no pay. Two arbitrators evaluated the work accomplished by Louis Tetreau on the land of Lemoyne at the sum of 30 livres.

Naturally, the tenacity of the reclamation by Louis Tetreau did not help to preserve his job. He then turned toward the Jesuits. The brother Francois Malherbe, missionary procurator, permitted this experienced farmer to exploit 100 acres of land which was contingent to the property of its company installed at Trois-Rivieres. The lease was for 4 years and obliged Louis to sow half the farm in wheat, without mentioning 6 bushels of peas, etc. The lease furnished 4 oxen, 2 cows, 2 calves, 3 sows, 1 pig, 18 chickens, half the grain to be sowed and a worker during the harvest and threshing season. So Louis had half the harvest and many other advantages. He also agreed to deliver each year, 30 cord of maple to the Jesuit Monastery, for the price of 4 livres per cord. Louis Tetreau made his mark, a sort of capital <> on the bottom of the lease.

Noelle Landeau

Jean Beaudoin, baptized 27-5-1635 at Courcival, in the Maine, arrived in this country in 1658. He married, 12-8-1659, at Trois-Rivieres, Noelle Landeau, daughter of the late Jean & Marie Aubert. The bride had received the baptism 2-11-1638 at Jauze, also in the province of Maine. Jean died prematurely, leaving to his wife a son, Louis, and a daughter born posthumously, Madeleine, baptized 22-4-1662.

Louis Tetreau met the widow Beaudoin and proposed her marriage. She accepted in their contract, passed in the presence of the Notary Severin Ameau 23-1-1663. We find that Noelle & Louis put all their belongings together. It was stipulated that Madeleine Beaudoin shall be fed and taken care of and she will share the rights of the future children born of this marriage. The older child, Louis, died young.

Claude-Jean Allouez, S.J. declared them married on Saturday, 9-6-1663 in the presence of Masse Besnier, Pierre Lefebvre and Severin Ameau, husband of Madeleine Beaudoin and brother-in-law to the bride.
Buying and Selling of Land

Louis Tetreau did not seem to be lazy. He was not afraid to buy and sell land. It is not always easy to find the precise place that he had settled.

In 17-03-1665, Louis officially obtained two pieces of land measuring 2x40 arpents on the channel of the Riviere Ste-Anne, in the Champlain Seigneurie, owned by Etienne Pezard. He cut the value of 5 square arpents of wood. Louis & Noelle, in 26-02-1670 sold these lands to Jean Baril, who laid out a sum of 300 livres in three equal payments to acquire the land.

At the 1666 census, the Tetreau couple were living on the Jesuit farm. Two domestics: Jacques Bissonet and Jean Monet lived under their roof. The following year, we find the Tetreaus at Petit-Cap-de-la-Magdeleine, where they own 1 horned animal and 5 arpents of developed land.

For 80 livres, in 30-06-1668, he became the owner of 2 arpents of frontage in the Champlain seigneurie. The seller is named Jean Bellet dit LaChaussee. On the following Oct. 4, Louis sold it to Jacques Lafontaine.

Louis Pinard, in 19-02-1670 conceded 7 arpents of frontage by 20 deep to Louis Tetreau. This property is found to be in the Hertel fief, in the estate of Madeleine Hertel, wife of Pinard. This acquisition then raised Louis Tetreau to the status of [small seigneur], as this part of the fief had a house and 45 planks ready to use. Besides, Pierre Disy and Martin Foisy, settled below the creek l'Arbre-a-la-Croix, became taxpayers to Tetreau. It is to him that they will pay, now, the seigneurial taxes. What did he pay for the deal? Pinard was asking 642 livres, but as he, Pinard already owed 342 livres for the balance of a payment of a dwelling place in Champlain, he will receive only 300 livres, [in beaver or moose hides], before 24-06-1671.

The Tetreaus wanted still yet more land. Good land. Severin Ameau, Noelle's brother-in-law, conceded, in 15-02-1671, 9 arpents of frontage by 40 deep, in the fief of Nicholas Marsolet. As it happily turns out, this royal grant is near the Hertel fief. Louis only had to pay an annual rent of a bushel and a half of wheat, three chickens, and 3 deniers in cash. It was a princely gift.

In 26 September 1671, Louis Pinard gave Louis a receipt for 642 livres for the sale of his habitation at l'Arbre-a-la-Croix. But, in 28-10-1673, Pinard, the clear-seeing businessman, wanted to obtain the best lands from his Hertel fief, which extended at two lieus back (deep). By selling the land on the riverside, he remained left with a poor portion of the property. Tetreau and his wife surveyed the deal, and took advantage of it to ask 660 livres for the land, 593 livres for the house and barn, and a rent of 25 bushel of wheat. Jacques Brisset, son, and Antoine Desrosiers signed as witnesses.

Pinard liked doing business with Louis Tetreau. Again, on 15-4-1674, he offered him a habitation of 6 arpents by 40 situated between the property of Foisy and Martin Brunet, at the Marsolet Prairie, which was very near the property of Tetreau. The latter agreed to pay the rent and annual taxes to Nicolas Marsolet: 1 bushel of wheat, 10 chickens, 2 deniers, etc., and to Pinard, 200 livres, the value [of the house which is built there].

Louis and Noelle did quit their hard work. In 1681 they were at Champlain with eight hungry mouths to feed. They owned one gun, 18 arpents of farmland and 9 horned animals. Rene Beaudoin, husband of Marie Racios, and Michel Destosiers are their neighbors.
Judicial Prudence

In Nouvelle-France, marriage contracts were drawn up in the [Paris Custom] when one of the partners died, the survivor conserved half of the wealth, buildings, etc.. The widow or widower must divide up, in equal parts, half of the land amongst the children. This system often caused conflicts among members of the family instead of protecting them.

Louis Tetreau and Noelle Landeau wanted to sidestep this situation. By notorial act in 25-02-1685, Louis and Noelle, [living in the Marsolet fief], made a mutual gift from one to the other of all their belongings, without exception. These [gifts] blocked all judicial procedures. Also, an inventory, often costly, was eliminated, as there was now no reason to divide.


Tetreault Family Tree

My Familys Heart Genealogy

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