An Ethnographic Report on the Acadian-Métis (Sang-Mêlés) People of Southwest Nova Scotia

First Authored by:

                                                        Christian Boudreau BSW, BSc. Psychology

                

Second Authors:

Jo-Anne Muise Lawless, M.A.

Sébastien Malette, Ph.D.

March, 2018

 

© Christian Boudreau All Rights Reserved


 

For Amelia


Acknowledgement

As the first author of this report, I wish to acknowledge the support of my wife, Kim, and my family, as well as the assistance of the following archives in the creation of this work: Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, Québec, Centre d’Études Acadiennes Anselme-Chiasson Moncton, New Brunswick, Le Centre de Recherche Les Archives père Clarence d’Entremont, Middle-West Pubnico, Nova Scotia, Library and Archives Canada/Public Archives of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, The Nova Scotia Archives, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Province of Nova Scotia online Historical Vital Statistics, Massachusetts Archives, Boston, Massachusetts, and the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center, Boston Library, Boston Massachusetts. I also wish to thank the Association Acadien-Métis Souriquois (AAMS) for their support. I am also most thankful to Gérald C. Boudreau, Marie Rundquist and the late Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont. Finally, a special thanks to Jo-Anne Muise Lawless, Law and Legal Studies PhD candidate, and Law and Legal Studies professor Sébastien Malette (Carleton University) for their close collaboration in researching and writing this report.

The cover illustration used for this report is from Pound, Thomas, and Gay, Frederick Lewis. "A new mapp of New England from Cape Codd to Cape Sables." Map. 1912. Norman B. Leventhal Map Center, https://collections.leventhalmap.org/search/commonwealth:7h149w95d (accessed March 24, 2018).

How to cite: Boudreau, Christian, Jo-Anne Muise Lawless, and Sebastien Malette. An Ethnographic Report on the Acadian-Métis (Sang-Mêlés) People of Southwest Nova Scotia (Middle-West Pubnico, Nova Scotia, 2018).

Copyright © 2018 by Christian Boudreau

All rights reserved. This report or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the authors, except for the use of brief quotations in a book review. 

The authors allow the public distribution of this report in its entirety for non-commercial usage by using the following link of its PDF download:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1BASZgpvgEkdphdMnvyns9GNZjyyLwe2ryIyh4gtS0Rk/edit?usp=sharing

A section of “A sermon, Pénitence Imposée.[1]


Table of Contents

1. Executive Summary        5

2. Considerations        8

2.1 Cultural Impact        8

2.2 Labels Ascribed to the Acadian-Métis, or the Sang-Mêlés people        8

2.3 The Question of Blood Quantum        9

2.4 The Need for Accurate Research        9

2.5 Acknowledgment of the Eastern Métis        9

3. Context        11

4. The Works of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne        12

5. Prejudice Against the Sang-Mêlés (Acadian-Métis) People        16

6. Genealogical Misconceptions        20

7. Racial Divisions        22

8. Early Acadian Métis Ancestry        26

9. The Caste System in Southwest Nova Scotia        37

10. The Bois-Brûlés of Southwest Nova Scotia        50

11. Marriage Patterns        56

12. Post-Deportation Settlement        61

13. Offspring of the Acadian-Métis        71

14. The Métis of Port La Tour        77

15. Issues of Blood Quantum and the Powley Case        91

16. Conclusion        101

References Cited        107

Archival Documents        107

Published Sources        110

Jurisprudence        114

List of Illustrations        115

Appendices        116

1. Executive Summary

European colonizers from France, England, and Scotland settled in what is now known as Southwest Nova Scotia in the early part of the 17th century. They intermarried with the original inhabitants of the area, the Mi’kmaq and Maliseet, creating a distinct mixed-heritage people (sometimes described as a “caste” of people) who subsequently endured prejudice and denigration from Acadians and others who considered themselves to be of pure blood—a prejudice which continues to the present day.

Archival data demonstrates the existence of a caste system in Nova Scotia which arose as a result of the existence of these Métis families—also commonly known as Sang-Mêlés, or “mixed-bloods.” Marriage records indicate that intermarriages took place with the very first settlers, irrespective of their status, but as the community of Métis, or Sang-Mêlés, grew, there was a reluctance to marry outside of one’s caste. As time passed, the perceived taint of Indigenous blood still affected the treatment of these original Métis peoples, regardless of the fact that the Indigenous “blood quantum” could be deemed negligible by some, in many of the families experiencing denigration. In fact, the Métis descendants of these peoples are now facing the double prejudice that some are considered too Indigenous to be “White,” while,  for others, their indigeneity is denigrated as insignificant by a recast of a “blood quantum” argument, making their Indigenous origin too distant. 

This report outlines the genealogical history of several of these families—their origins as Sang-Mêlés, and the experience of their descendents as a separate caste of maligned people. The author corrects some of the most recent errors in genealogical data, and addresses concerns that the Acadian Métis—the original mixed-heritage peoples—do not meet the criteria for a legitimate Métis historical community. In both cases of prejudice, the authors show that we are in the presence of a distinct Indigenous culture, whose history is tied to different ethonyms, including Métis, Sang-Mêlés and Bois-Brûlés. Although their history includes the presence of Indigenous ancestry, it is important to understand that their history and culture cannot be reduced to that phenomenon alone.

The key points of this report can be summarized as follows:

  • Context. The Acadian-Métis of Southwest Nova Scotia currently reside in the region and across North America; they and their descendants have been perceived as an inferior caste of people, distinct from the Acadians and First Nations peoples of the area, from before the time of Deportation.
  • The Works of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne. Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne, a Catholic priest sent to live among the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia around the turn of the 19th century, provides valuable written evidence of the denigration practiced against the group known as the Sang-Mêlés, or mixed-blood people, within his two primary parishes.
  • Prejudice Against the Sang-Mêlés (Acadian-Métis) people. According to archival data, discrimination against the Acadian-Métis may have begun slightly before the Deportation of the Acadians, in the mid-1700s; ethnonyms such as “part Indian” and “Mulatto” were used to describe a group who appeared to inspire fear in their European counterparts.
  • Genealogical Misconceptions. Amateur genealogists frequently ascribed false names to First Nations women married to European settlers—women who were customarily recorded in historical documents as “unknown”— leading researchers to the erroneous conclusion that fabricated names such as “Marie Coyoteblanc” and “Marie Kjipuktuk” were legitimate and accurate.
  • Racial Divisions. Archival evidence clearly demonstrates racial divisions among three distinct groups of people in Southwest Nova Scotia after the Deportation of the Acadians in 1755; the First Nations people (called “Sauvages”, or “Indians”), the Sang-Mêlés (Métis or mixed-bloods), and the French.
  • Early Acadian-Métis Ancestry. The early genealogical data regarding the Acadian-Métis people of Southwest Nova Scotia provides a rich history of mixed marriages between European settlers, First Nations people, and the Sang-Mêlés (Métis), particularly in the area of Cape Sable, and indicates long-standing community occupation of this part of the province, as well as fishing traditions as ancestral practices.
  • The Caste System in Southwest Nova Scotia. There were two castes of Acadians among Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s flock of parishioners in Southwest Nova Scotia, as determined by the presence or absence of indigenous heritage in one’s ancestry; the Purs, (or Whites) and the “caste dêtestée des gens mêlés,” or detested caste of mixed people. These findings show the contour of a distinct people from the Acadian of strict European descent and the “Indians,” segregated on the basis of their indigeneity.
  • The Bois-Brûlés. Historian François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père referred to the Mius and Doucet descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Germain Doucet (1641) living in Tusket Forks/Quinan Nova Scotia as “Bois-Brûlés” and “Métis;” not as “Acadians,” illustrating the clear use of a particular ethnonym to refer to a distinct people.
  • Marriage Patterns. The tendency of Acadians and Acadian-Métis to marry among their own people was likely the direct result of the vilification of the members of the Sang-Mêlé people by the members of the Pur caste: parents of Pur children would rather their children marry even within the prohibited degrees of consanguinity to keep their bloodlines pure and untainted, than to have their children to marry one of the Sang-Mêlé people.                
  • Post-Deportation Settlement. Settlement patterns of returning deportees demonstrate not only complex yet discernable endogamic practices between Acadian-Métis families—that is, the custom of marrying within one’s own group— but they also allow researchers to track the presence of long-standing Acadian-Métis historical settlements.  
  • Offspring of the Acadian-Métis. Some of the children produced by marriages of Métis people with those outside the existing caste system ended up marrying non-mixed blood spouses and having families with them; however, an examination of the registers of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau in Argyle, Nova Scotia shows that many children produced by the outsider/Métis blood group did, in fact, marry other children resulting from outsider/Métis marriages, thus adding even more Métis heritage to the family lines.
  • The Métis of Port La Tour. Documentation regarding Port La Tour and Fort-Saint Louis in Cape Sable in Acadia indicates that this was a region with a high frequency of métissage (intermarriage) between the First Nations people and Acadian settlers, from the earliest period of Acadian history.
  • Issues of Blood Quantum and the Powley Case. The evidence provided within this report demonstrates that the Acadian-Métis people of Southwest Nova Scotia meet the criterion of ancestral connection associated with the Powley Test associated with section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982. It ties previous analysis to show that the Acadian-Métis are distinctive peoples who, in addition to their mixed ancestry, developed their own customs, and recognizable group identity separate from their “Indian” and European forebears. It moreover provides a comparative analysis between the Lesage line (i.e. Powley) and the Mius line, examining the arguments made by the Crown that were rejected by the Supreme Court of Canada.  
  • Conclusion. Louis Riel himself acknowledged the existence of the Métis in the Eastern provinces of Canada, encouraging equal treatment and standing for these Métis. The Acadian-Métis are not the Red River Métis. However, evidence indicates that the ethnonyms Métis, Bois-Brûlés, and Half-breeds were used historically in relation to this people, hence justifying the usage of that specific term by their descendants. This report echoes the sentiment of Riel, providing concrete evidence of the long-standing existence of a historical Métis community in the Southwest region of Nova Scotia (in the region of Cape Sable).

2. Considerations

2.1 Cultural Impact

There was an established caste system among the people living in South West Nova Scotia in the early 18th century. According to this caste system, those people without “Sauvage” bloodthat is, without First Nations blood—were classified as the “Purs;” the pure Blancs, or Whites, and those who were of mixed Acadian French and “Sauvage” ancestry, regardless of how far back their last “full-blooded” First Nations ancestor was, were identified as “Sang-Mêlés.” The Sang-Mêlés, or the Métis, were often considered to be inferior to their Pur neighbours, and were viewed as constituting their own “race.” They experienced prejudice and discrimination as a result, which had a significant impact on them, and on future generations, to the present day.

2.2 Labels Ascribed to the Acadian-Métis, or the Sang-Mêlés people

The use of the name “Métis,” as applied to the Sang-Mêlés people of Nova Scotia, can be considered a correct historic usage of the term to refer to a distinct group of mixed-blooded people who were biologically related to, yet different from both their Acadian relatives, and their First Nations relatives. The contours of this Métis people can be seen as a result of distinctive cultural practices inherited by these two groups of people, generating a distinct culture and people. Historically, ethnonyms including Métis, Acadian-Métis, Acadian-Micmac, Mitchif, Bois-Brûlés, Sang-Mêlés, Mulatto and semi-Indians, or part-Indians have been used by various observers to describe the Métis population of the Maritimes over a period of at least 150 years (including by historians, priests and colonial officials). The historian François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père, for instance, referred to the Mius and Doucet descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Germain Doucet (1641) respectively, as “Bois-Brûlés” and “Métis,” not as “Acadians.” The term “Mulatto” was also used for those mixed-blood people living in the area of Grand Pré, River Canard, and Pizziquid. Because most of the Acadian-Métis people did not write their own history (most of whom were illiterate, and participated in events such as the Deportation or the scalp proclamation), most of these ethnonyms were ascribed by outsiders who noticed their distinctiveness. Yet, evidence shows that the terms “Acadian-Métis” and “Métis” have been used by descendants of these families from the 1970s onward, marking a degree of continuity during the 1960s pan-indigenous awakening movement.[2]  For these reasons, this report will use the ethnonyms Acadian-Métis, Métis, and Sang-Mêlés people as interchangeable.    

2.3 The Question of Blood Quantum

Given the genealogical data provided here, it could be argued that the Acadian-Métis people had far too much European or other non-Indigenous ancestry/heritage to make them legitimate Indigenous people; the challenge has been made that they are too watered down in terms of percentage of their “Sauvage” blood. Blood quantum, however, does not factor into this situation at all, and had no impact on the formation of Métis identity for someone like Louis David Riel, for example, who stated in his poetry that almost all of his heritage was “French.”[3] Moreover, the notion of blood quantum has been completely discredited by the Supreme Court of Canada in the Powley decision, despite the attempts by the Crown to allude to the low blood quotient of the Powley family (1/64 and 1/28, respectively).

2.4 The Need for Accurate Research

There have been some instances of inaccurate genealogical research, and the assignment of false names to women who were listed as “unidentified” in parish and archival records. These errors are subsequently accepted as fact, and are then perpetuated both online, and in physical format. Unfortunately, this improper practice seriously impacts the legitimacy and integrity of Acadian-Métis genealogy.

2.5 Acknowledgment of the Eastern Métis

Currently, there is contention and academic debate over who qualifies as an authentic Métis person. Louis Riel himself acknowledged the Métis in Eastern Canada, writing:

Quant aux provinces Canadiennes de l’Est, beaucoup de Métis y vivent méprisés sous le Costume indienne. Leurs villages sont des villages d’indigence. Leur titre indien au sol est pourtant aussi bon que le titre indien des Métis du Manitoba.

Translated, this reads:

“When it comes to the Eastern provinces of Canada, many Métis live there persecuted in the attire of the Indian costume. Their villages are villages of indigence. Their Indian title to the land is, however, as good as the Indian title of the Métis of Manitoba.”[4] 

The Mius family, who are long-standing Acadian-Métis (Sang-Mêlés people) from the Cape Sable area, were signatories to the 1726 Ratification of the 1725 Peace and Friendship Treaty between colonizers and Indigenous leaders. Their descendants were part of this distinct Métis population (or caste) per evidence that will be reviewed in this report.

 


3. Context

Who are the Acadian-Métis of Southwest Nova Scotia, and how does their history demonstrate the existence of a maligned mixed-race people? The Acadian-Métis of Southwest Nova Scotia were, and still are, a group of people residing in the region, and across North America. As stated earlier, the ethnonyms used to refer to the Acadian-Métis of Southwest Nova Scotia and their descendants have known many variations historically, and were often closely related to issues of “race,” “caste,” and “impurities,” by which the Métis of the Maritime provinces were portrayed as a lower people. The writings of Père André-Thomas Bourque are significant in that regard, where we find the following remark: "Il y a quelques années, la plus grande insulte quon eût pu faire à un Acadien, aurait été de lui dire quil avait du sang indien dans les veines"[5] (A few years ago, the greatest insult one could have made to an Acadian would have been to tell him that he had Indian blood in his veins). This excerpt is central to understanding the tragic, yet often untold history of the Sang-Mêlés or “mixed bloods” of Southwest Nova Scotia.

In order to fully understand who the Sang-Mêlés of Southwest Nova Scotia were, and are, one must first become familiar with Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne, a Catholic priest who was sent to live among the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia, around the turn of the 19th century. Père Sigogne was a man of great influence who oversaw two parishes in Southwest Nova Scotia; the parish of Baie-Sainte-Marie in Clare, Nova Scotia, and the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, in Argyle, Nova Scotia.


4. The Works of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne

To help portray who exactly the Sang-Mêlés people of Southwest Nova Scotia were, and the acts of denigration they endured in the early-1800s, this report relies on letters and sermons written by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne during that time period, as they provide raw insight into an often untold history of the severe prejudice, ostracization, and hatred inflicted by the general Acadian population of Southwest Nova Scotia upon a less-numerous population of those who were different from the general  population of the region; namely, the mixed-heritage people of the Acadian-Métis. This prejudice ultimately resulted in the parishioners of the parish of Baie-Sainte-Marie and the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau becoming segregated into castes, based on their ancestries and cultural differences.

     

According to this caste system, those people without “Sauvage” bloodthat is, savage or First Nations kinship ties—who attended the parishes, were classified as the Purs; the pure Blancs, or Whites, and those who were of mixed Acadian-French and Indigenous heritage, regardless of how far back their last “full-blooded” First Nations ancestor was, were classified as the Sang-Mêlés (also as “Métis” and “Bois-Brulés” by François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père, see section 10) . The Sang-Mêlés were, in essence, Métis people who were considered to be inferior to their Pur neighbours, and were viewed as their own race” or “caste.” They thus formed a distinct people, viewed as different from a collective standpoint, because of their Indigeneity, considered by “Whites” as a lower status. Pur parents would rather their children marry within the proscribed degrees of consanguinity, or not marry at all, instead of having their children marry someone from the detested Sang-Mêlé or Métis caste. This pattern of marriage was a direct result of attitudes of prejudice, which was more pronounced from generation to generation of Pur families than in those who came from outside Acadia, post-Deportation.  

     

This denigration resulted in many problems for Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne, which he often spoke of throughout his many surviving writings. One such problem was that Père Sigogne was often required to request dispensations in order to marry members of both castes, as close cousins were frequently forced to marry each other, as a result of the segregation. Père Sigogne wrote to the Archbishop of Québec, Monseigneur Pierre Denaut, and to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis, on multiple occasions between the year 1800 and the year 1826, expressing his frustration with this segregation, and the actions of those people who belonged to the Sang-Mêlé caste (the Acadian-Métis). Père Sigogne acknowledged that the Indigenous ”blood” among the members of the Sang-Mêlé caste was very diluted in terms of blood quantum; however, the Sang-Mêlés were still considered to have been almost equivalent to, and often equivalent to the “Sauvages,” or First Nations peoples, and were treated as such by the Pur families. In essence, the Sang-Mêlés were considered to be a people caught somewhere between the Purs and the “Sauvages,” despite having more European blood than “Sauvage.” The Sang-Mêlés were understood as a hybrid and quite distinct people. Even more accurately, they were, by all historical standards of the time, a Métis people, quite similar in their experience of discrimination and description by outsiders to the Métis of Sault-Ste-Marie, Manitoba, or the Northwest.

   

To continue the discussion regarding the true extent of the denigration of the Sang-Mêlés people of Southwest Nova Scotia during Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s time spent among the Acadians, we may consider an excerpt from a letter written by Père Sigogne to Monseigneur Pierre Denaut, dated October 15, 1802;

Car quoique jevous ai déja écrit Sur cela je n’ai cependant aucune assurance que vous ayer recu mes lettres. (?) arrêter Dans mon monde la grande demangeaison de le marier (?) demangeaison dans laquelle l’orgueil des familles à beaucoup depart, car ils meprisent à mérit égale & même Superieur des familles tant Soit peu entachées dece qu’ils appellers Sang-mêlé c. à d. qui viennant originairement du commence des francois avec les Sauvages (on gêne fort les jeunes gens sur ce point & ils veulent qu’on passe et passer eux mêmes (?) les regles de l’eglise pour respecter leur préjugé, auquel je fais la guerre, mais avec prudence, car le point est delicat & glissant (c’est le seul point où leur Systême d’égalité n’a pas lieu).[6]

Translated, this reads:

 

For although I have already written to you about this, I have no assurance that you have received my letters. (?) stop. In my world the great urge to marry (?) urging in which the pride of families a great deal departs, because they dislike me to give equal & even Superior to the families that are a little tainted with what they call Sang-mêlé; that is to say, who come originally at the beginning of the French with the Savages (we strongly upset the young people on this point & they wish that we pass and pass themselves (?) the rules of the church to respect their prejudice, with which I make war, but with caution, because the point is delicate & slippery (this is the only point where their System of Equality does not apply).

Based on this information, it is evident that Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne was still fighting a war against the prejudice inflicted upon the Sang-Mêlés people of Southwest Nova Scotia by their Pur neighbours in 1802, just a few years after his arrival to the area. Père Sigogne realized that this war had to be fought in a delicate manner, as the denigration of the Sang-Mêlés people had become a widely accepted practice in the Acadian communities of Southwest Nova Scotia by 1802. Despite having to tread lightly in working toward accomplishing his goal of eliminating this prejudice, Père Sigogne vowed to continue to wage war upon it. This excerpt also demonstrates that the Pur Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia had developed so much hatred and prejudice toward the Sang-Mêlés families of the region by 1802, that they went so far as to try and have the rules of the Church bent to accommodate the denigration of the ancestors of the Acadian-Métis.

If the Sang-Mêlés people had a greater amount of European blood than they had “Sauvage” blood, when exactly did the initial intermarriages by their European and Indigenous ancestors occur? To answer that question, we turn to the writings of an English soldier named Captain William Moorsom. Captain Moorsom toured Nova Scotia in the 1820s and recorded his observations in a series of letters which were eventually published in 1830 in the form of an anthology entitled, Letters from Nova Scotia; Comprising Sketches of a Young Country. Captain Moorsom’s writings from his time spent in Clare, Nova Scotia are especially important, as he provides an exact time period of the original intermarriages of the ancestors of the members of the Sang-Mêlé caste in a letter written about his time spent among the Acadians of Clare. Moorsom states that, “A few families of semi-Indian extraction are to be found in this settlement: their origin must be referred to the commencement of the eighteenth century,”[7] and further, that “These families are looked upon as rather without the pale of social brotherhood.”[8] Once again, we see denigration of the mixed-blooded Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia by their “pureneighbours. The semi-Indians  to whom Captain William Moorsom makes reference were actually the Sang-Mêlés or Métis people who attended Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s parish at Baie-Sainte-Marie, in Clare, Nova Scotia, while Père Sigogne was stationed there.

There are really only two significant differences between the writings of Captain William Moorsom and the writings of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne. The first difference is that Captain Moorsom referred to the mixed-blooded Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia as semi-Indians,” while Père Sigogne referred to them as “Sang-Mêlés.” A second significant variance between the writings of the two authors is that that Captain William Moorsom was an outsider to the region of Southwest Nova Scotia when he made his observations, and he did not actually reside in the region, whereas Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne was born an outsider to the region but lived among the local Acadian population for a large part of his lifetime. Therefore, we have evidence of similar observations being made by someone who had briefly visited Southwest Nova Scotia and by someone who had lived in the region for quite some time, although neither man was native to the region. Clearly, this indicates the contour of ethnological difference attributed on a collective and distinctive basis to the people from which the ancestors of the Acadian-Métis descend.

If, then, the original inter-mixing of the European and “Sauvage” ancestors of the Sang-Mêlés was stated by Captain William Moorsom to have occurred, with good intention on both sides, around the turn of the 18th century, when did the Acadian-Métis people become a denigrated group? According to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis, in response to Abbé Thomas Cooke’s October 12, 1826 letter, expressing similar frustration and discrimination against his own mixed-blooded parishioners to that felt by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne during the same time period: “Vous demandez une lettre Pastorale pour faire cesser les reproches qu’attire à une partie de vos paroissiens le sang mêlé qui coule dans leurs veines. Ce désordre est très ancien parmi les Acadiens orgueilleux.[9] [10] This translates to: “You are asking for a Pastoral letter to put an end to the reproaches which a part of your parishioners draw with the mixed blood that flows in their veins. This disorder is long-standing among the proud Acadians.”


5. Prejudice Against the Sang-Mêlés (Acadian-Métis) People

It appears that the discrimination against the Acadians-Métis was not something that developed in Southwest Nova Scotia after the return of the Acadians, post-Deportation, but had been in place for quite some time. When did this discrimination begin? According to archival data, it may have begun slightly before the Deportation of the Acadians, in the mid-1700s. It is possible that the discrimination may have developed from fear on the part of the British that they could be scalped or otherwise assaulted, as is mentioned in a Nova Scotia Council Minutes recording, given by Lieutenant-Governor Paul Mascarene on January 04, 1745:

Another letter from the inhabitants of Grand Pré, river Canard and Pizziquid, in conjunction, assuring him of their intention to continue faithful subjects to His Majesty King George, and having that confidence in him as children towards their father, they have a favor to ask, having learnt by indirect means that several armed vessels were arrived from New England, and that they had pressed by violence several inhabitants of Annapolis Royal to go against the Indians and serve them as pilots, and hearing they were coming up the Bay to do the same, and to destroy all the inhabitants that had any Indian blood in them, and scalp them, that as there was a great number of Mulattoes amongst them, who had taken the Oath, and who were allied to the greatest families, it had caused a terrible alarm, which made many put themselves on their guard, being very much frightened, for which reason all the inhabitants being assembled of each district, had sent to him to submit themselves to his mercy, and to represent that in case they were obliged to make any Sorties or go against the Indians, that barbarous and inhuman nation would assassinate them every day, while they were at their work and separated from one another without being able to have any succour from the Government as it was so remote, which they had well foreseen when they reserved in taking the Oath of fidelity a dispensation from every thing that related to war; the favor therefore that they demand is to know whether the people of Boston have a right to force them, and expose them to such danger…”[11]

What is especially interesting to note about the Mulattos—a term used by Mascarene to refer to mixed-blood Acadians or Métis of the areas of Grand Pré, River Canard, and Pizziquidis that the Métis family of Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josephe Préjean were residing in the general area where the Mulattos were said to live in Les Mines, pre-Deportation.[12] Joseph II was the son of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Marie Amirault of Port La Tour/Baccaro/Cape Sable, in present-day Shelburne County, Nova Scotia. Again, Joseph I was recorded as a “part Indian who dwelt at Port Le Tore, in English cartographer and colonial naval commander Captain Cyprian Southack’s January 22, 1718 memorial concerning “Fishing Losses” in Acadia.[13]

Excerpt from the Memorial of Captain Cyprian Southack, 1718/1719.[14] 

January 04, 1745 Nova Scotia Council minutes. Lieutenant-Governor Paul Mascarene.[15]


6. Genealogical Misconceptions

Joseph Mius d’Azy I was the son of Philippe Mius d’Entremont II—whose birth year varies from 1660 to 1662, depending on the census—and an “unknown” First Nations woman. According to Père Joseph Clarence d’Entremont, this unknown First Nations woman was from the eastern shore of what is now known as Barrington.[16] Regardless of Philippe II’s actual birth year, archival data indicates that he fathered Joseph I at a very young age.[17] It is important to note that a common error exists concerning Philippe Mius d’Entremont II’s First Nations wife, and this error has been repeatedly perpetuated by members of online genealogy communities. The misconception is that Philippe II’s first wife, who was also the mother of Joseph Mius d’Azy I, was named “Marie Coyoteblanc.” Nowhere in any legitimate record does the name of Philippe II’s first wife appear; however, according to a Wikitree profile for this unknown”[18] First Nations woman,

In 2015, ‘Unknown Amerindien’ was given the beautiful name Marie Coyoteblanc. This name honors her Mikmaq culture, honors her place in Acadian history as helping establish the Mius lineage, and honors the fact she was an individual who deserves recognition…[19]

It is likely that this name was invented by amateur genealogists on the Internet. It seems certain that the creation of this name and its attribution to the “unknown” First Nations spouse of Philippe Mius d’Entremont II was driven by good intent. However, the authors of this report would qualify this as an improper genealogical practice, which significantly harms the legitimacy of Acadian-Métis genealogy. It is important to emphasize that, for direct descendants of this unknown First Nations woman, it is not only false, but disrespectful to invent a name and attach it to someone who is listed as unknown” in terms of a primary source record. The golden rule, in such occurrences, is best to simply leave people as unknown if no legitimate primary written record exists to positively identify them.

In fact, Philippe Mius d’Entremont II had two wives, for whom there are written records. His second wife, who was a First Nations woman, was simply known as “Marie.” As with Philippe II’s unknown first wife, the online amateur genealogy community has falsely given an invented surname to Marie. This invented surname is “Kjipuktuk” and again, a Wikitree online profile has been created for her;

Marie Amerindien; in 2016, was renamed Marie Kjipuktuk. This name honors her Mikmaq culture, honors her place in Acadian history as one who helped continue the lineages of the Guidry family through her daughters Madeleine and Anne, and honors her as an individual that deserves recognition.[20]

What can be said for certain about the second wife of Philippe Mius d’Entremont II is that her name was simply “Marie,” that she was a First Nations woman, and that she was recorded on the 1708 census of Acadia[21] as having been 38 years old; therefore, born circa 1670, and residing in the settlement of  La Hève with Philippe II and their six children.[22] [23]


7. Racial Divisions     

There were clear race divisions evident in the archival records of families living in Cape Sable at this time. In one instance, Joseph Mius d’Azy I received a donation of land at the Passage of Cape Sable on the coast of Port La Tour from Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour fils (Junior) on April 26, 1713.[24] This land was for Joseph I and his heirs.[25] The following excerpt summarizes a July 11, 1715 encounter that Captain Southack had with Joseph I and his father-in-law, François Amirault dit Tourangeau, on the coast of Port Roseway, Nova Scotia:

That on the eleventh day of July 1715 your Memost under Governour Dudley’s Warrant being a Shoar at Cape Rosaway on the Coast of Nova Scotia with Three fishing Vessells Vizt two Sloops and a Scooner whereof he was the sole Owner at which Place he landed all his Stores and built two Houses a Shoar for carrying on his Fishery And after your Memost had been some time at Port Rosaway aforesaid and had made some considerable Advances in his Fishery one Tauranguer a Frenchman & Jo. Muse part Indian who dwelt at Port Le Tore aforesaid came to your Memost and told him they would head one hundred Indians to Destroy all the English Fishery on that Coast, the said Taranguer and Muse having some time before Sworne Allegiance to the Crown of Great Britain at Annapolis Royall…”[26]

     

Three races of people are mentioned in this excerpt; the first appears in Captain Southack’s reference to Tauranguer—that is, François Amirault dit Tourangeau—as “a Frenchman.” Jo. Muse is referred to as “part Indian,” and the Indigenous people who were being recruited to attack the English fishery were called “Indians.” The document also indicates that the land donation was being made to Josephe mieuse, genre a Touranjot (Josephe mieuse, son-in-law of Tourangeau.)[27] This record of land transfer allows us to conclude that the “Jo. Muse part Indian who dwelt at Port Le Tore,” mentioned by Captain Southack, was, in fact, Joseph I, given that Joseph I received the land donation for land at the Passage of Cape Sable on the coast of Port La Tour on April 26, 1713, and the incident described by Captain Southack in his Memorial occurred on July 11, 1715.

Land donation to Joseph Mius D’Azy 1. [28]

Further evidence to support this conclusion can be found in the September 02, 1715 entry of the Commissary of Annapolis Royal Lieutenant Peter Capon’s journal, from his 1715 voyage to various parts of Acadia, undertaken so that he could inquire about the recent seizures of New England fishing vessels by the Mi’kmaq. Capon records that on that date, he

Anchored at Bachareau and there went ashore, and the inhabitants told me yt ye Indians had restored all ye Vessells, and that Mons: Touranjeau and his son in law (2 inhabitants) were gone to Boston, and they told me that one Captn Wright had been cast away on ye Island of Mackadome, in ye Month of July last, and ye Indians had killed ye Doctor of ye ship.[29]

A comparison of the date of Lieutenant Peter Capon’s journal entry of September 02, 1715 with  that of the incident mentioned by Captain Cyprian Southack in his memorial on July 11, 1715, indicates that it was less than two months after their encounter with Captain Southack on the coast of Port Roseway, Nova Scotia that François Amirault dit Tourangeau and Joseph Mius d’Azy I had gone to Boston. In relation to Lieutenant Peter Capon’s journal, Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont suggests in “Volume 4” of his 1981 book entitled, Histoire du Cap-Sable De lAn Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763) that the likely reason why François Amirault dit Tourangeau and Joseph Mius d’Azy I had gone to Boston in the summer of 1715 was to discuss the hostilities between the “Indians” of Cape Sable and Captain Cyprian Southack.

Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont further suggests that François Amirault dit Touranger and Joseph Mius d’Azy I likely travelled to Boston on one of the two sloops that were noted by Lieutenant Peter Capon in his August 31, 1715 journal entry, recorded at “Pubmacoup” (present-day Pubnico, Nova Scotia), who had ventured to Cape Sable to retrieve the New England fishing vessels that had been captured by the “Indians” of Cape Sable.[30] [31] This is further evidence to suggest that Joseph I and François served as intermediaries in relation to the strained relations between the Mi’kmaq of Cape Sable and the New Englanders, another distinctive occupation or function often associated with Métis cultures across the continent (see Foxcurran, Bouchard, Malette 2016, 217, 220, 320).

A comparison of the date of Lieutenant Peter Capon’s journal entry of September 02, 1715 with  that of the incident mentioned by Captain Cyprian Southack in his memorial on July 11, 1715, indicates that it was less than two months after their encounter with Captain Southack on the coast of Port Roseway, Nova Scotia that François Amirault dit Touranger and Joseph Mius d’Azy I had gone to Boston. It is important to focus attention on Captain Southack’s memorial once more, and the fact that he referred to Joseph I as “Jo. Muse part Indian who dwelt at Port Le Tore,” in contrast to the statement regarding François and Joseph l, who had “told him they would head one hundred Indians to Destroy all the English Fishery on that Coast.” This additional quotation is especially important, as it demonstrates that Joseph I was not considered to have been a full “Indian.” As well, when Captain Southack referred to François as “a Frenchman” it is evident that Joseph I was not considered to have been fully French, either. Captain Southack saw Joseph I as a “part Indian;” a person between “French” and “Indian.” In essence, Captain Southack saw Joseph I as a Métis person.

 


8. Early Acadian Métis Ancestry    

Having examined documents concerning Joseph Mius d’Azy I, and his Métis origins, it is worth returning to the above-mentioned Nova Scotia Council Minutes record given by Lieutenant-Governor Paul Mascarene on January 04, 1744.

These minutes are especially relevant to the family of Joseph I’s son, Joseph Mius d’Azy II, given his ancestry and the fact that mixed-blooded Acadians who were residing where he was in 1744 were referred to collectively and distinctively as Mulattos. These facts concerning the background of Joseph Mius d’Azy II are especially important when combined with an excerpt taken from a letter written by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne on April 29, 1809 to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis, concerning five couples who required dispensations to marry.

This excerpt is significant in the identification of Acadian-Metis people, as Père Sigogne identifies the five couples by name and specifically states that the last four couples he mentioned in the letter were members of the “caste dêtestée des gens mêlés,” or “of the detested caste of mixed people.[32] All five couples were eventually granted the dispensations required and all were married on November 22, 1809 at the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau in Argyle, Nova Scotia.

Correspondence between Père Sigogne and Monseigneur Plessis, 1809.[33]

The four couples who belonged to the “caste dêtestée des gens mêlés” and their parents, according to the four marriage records dated November 22, 1809, are all found in the registers of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau in Argyle, Nova Scotia and are listed as follows: 

  1. Joseph O’Burd and Osithes Doucet: Joseph’s parents were Jean O’Burd and Magdelene Modeste Mius, while Osithes’ parents were Joseph Doucet and Ludivine Mius.
  2. Isaac Mius and Marguerite Moulaison: Isaac’s parents were Paul Mius” and Marie Leblanc, while Marguerite’s parents were Joseph Moulaison and Osithes Doucet.
  3. Louis Mius and Théoiste Doucet: Louis’ parents were Louis Mius and Anne Corporon, while Théoiste’s parents were Charles Doucet and Felicité Mius.
  4. Dominique Mius and Anne Mius: Dominique’s parents were also the previously-mentioned Paul Mius and Marie Leblanc, while Anne’s parents were Jean Mius and Anne Doucet.[34]

 

All four of these couples have Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Germain Doucet (1641) as the root source of their “Sauvage blood”. According to Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont, Louis Mius I was the son of Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josephe Préjean.[35] Significantly, Joseph II’s grandson was recorded as a Sang-Mêlé in 1809, as Joseph II was Louis Mius II’s paternal grandfather. Louis I died on January 09, 1826 at the age of 80 years, according to the registers of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau; therefore, he was born circa 1744.

According to the register of the parish of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Port Royal, Acadia, Joseph Mius d’Azy II was married to Marie-Josephe Préjean at Port Royal, Acadia on September 9, 1726. Joseph II’s father was Joseph Mius d’Azy I and his mother was Marie Amirault of Cape Sable. The register of the parish of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Port Royal, Acadia also advises us that Joseph II was baptized on October 23, 1705 by Récollet (Recollect) missionary, Père Félix Pain of the Mission à la Coté du Sud et de l’Est (Mission to the South and East Coast) but was initially baptized on his date of birth on June 27, 1700 at Cape Sable by Jean Mathieu. This record also notes that Joseph I and Marie were residents of Cape Sable. Something interesting in relation to Jean Mathieu, although not significant from a genealogical standpoint, is the fact that he was one of the Flibustiers (Filibusters/Buccaneers) associated with the famous sea captain and privateer, Pierre Maisonnat.[36]

     

The register of the parish of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Port Royal, Acadia tells us that Joseph Mius d’Azy I was buried at Port Royal on December 13, 1729 at the age of approximately 55 years. This indicates that he was born circa 1674. However, the 1708 census of Acadia states that Joseph I was 35 years old in 1708, which would mean that he was born circa 1673. So, if Joseph I was born circa 1673/74, this would mean that the Indigenous heritage in that Mius lineage was relatively distant by the time Louis II and Théoiste married in 1809.

According to the register of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, Felicité Mius, wife of Charles Doucet, died on February 07, 1828 at the age of approximately 71 years, and was buried on February 09, 1828. Therefore, Felicité was born circa 1757. As documented in the burial record, Felicité’s death was declared to Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne by her daughter Théoiste Doucet.

     

Interestingly, if we turn our attention to a February 28, 1757 record of indenture of a Charles-Amand Mius and his son-in-law, Paul Clermon, who were indentured to a man named Nathaniel Ray Thomas while in exile in Marshfield in Plymouth County (Massachusetts), we see that Charles-Amand had a daughter named Felicité Mius.[37] [38] According to the Indenture, Charles-Amand and Paul were originally from Cape Sable in Acadia, and Charles-Amand’s wife was named Marie Marthe Mius. It is also worth noting that Paul was Métis himself, as he was a descendant of Anne-Marie (Unknown surname) Pinet/Rimbault, who is discussed elsewhere in this report. According to Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont,  the “Felicité” recorded on the February 28, 1757 petition made by Charles-Amand Mius and his son-in-law, Paul Clermon in Marshfield in Plymouth County (Massachusetts), was the wife of the previously-mentioned Charles Doucet.[39] [40] 

Also worth noting in relation to this document is that Charles-Amand Mius and Paul Clermont are both said to have been residents of Cap Sable dans la nouvelle Écosse de Mistiguette Dans Le passage De L’est (Cape Sable in Nova Scotia of Mistiguette in the eastern passage), prior to their exile to Massachusetts. According to Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont, “Mistiguette” is actually the village of “Ministiguesche.”[41] According to Thomas J. Brown, “Ministiguesche” means, “he has gone for it" in the Mi’kmaq language; this community is now known as Barrington, Nova Scotia.[42] 

Now that we know Felicité Mius, wife of Charles Doucet, was the daughter of Charles-Amand Mius and his wife, Marie Marthe, who exactly was this Charles-Amand? The register of the parish of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Port Royal, Acadia notes that Charles-Amand was married to Marie Marthe Hébert on January 21, 1731. Charles-Amand is recorded to have been the son of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Marie Amirault, while Marie Marthe is stated to have been the daughter of Antoine Hébert and Jeanne Corporon. In addition, according to the Saint-Jean-Baptiste parish register, Charles-Amand Mius was born on December 17, 1702 and baptized on May 22, 1705, by the Récollet (Recollect) missionary, Père Félix Pain of the Mission à la Coté du Sud et de l’Est de la Province de l’Acadie (Mission to the South and East Coast of the Province of Acadia) providing evidence of another Sang-Mêlé family descending from the “part Indian” named Joseph Mius d’Azy I.[43]

     

Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis states that Anne Mius—who wished to marry Dominique Mius—was the daughter of Jean Mius and Anne Doucet.[44] If we turn to the registers of the parish of Sainte-Anne-Du-Ruisseau, we see that Jean Mius, husband of Anne Doucet, was buried on February 08, 1825 and died on February 07, 1825 at the age of approximately 82 years and five days. Therefore, Jean was born circa February 02, 1743. Jean Mius was also known as Jean-Pierre Mius and was the son of François Mius and Jeanne Duon.[45]

     

In Volume 24: French Neutrals, 1758–1769 collection of the Massachusetts Archives, we find mention of a family of “French Neutrals” removed by the townspeople of Tewksbury in Middlesex County, Massachusetts to the town of Reading in Middlesex County (Massachusetts). The family recorded in this document is that of Francis Mears and Jane his wife. Francis and Jane were stated to have had a son named John. A November 16, 1757 petition for relief found in the same document shows that Francis Mears was actually “Francis Miuse” (François Mius) of “Cape Sables, in Nova Scotia.[46]

     

A census taken at Reading in Middlesex County, Massachusetts indicates that Francis and Jane’s son, John, was 15 years old on April 16, 1760.[47] Therefore, John was born circa 1745. Francis was stated to have been 57 years old and was, therefore, born circa 1703. Père d’Entremont notes that Francis was actually “François Mius D’Azy,” son of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Marie Amirault, and Jane was “Jeanne Duon,” daughter of Jean-Baptiste Duon and Agnès Hébert.[48] 

If we consult the register of the parish of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Port Royal, Acadia, we find that François and Jeanne were married on February 14, 1735. This register also informs us that François Mius d’Azy was baptized on October 23, 1705, also by Père Félix Pain, the Récollet missionary, but was initially baptized on his date of birth on March 19, 1703 by François Amirault (dit Tourangeau), François’ maternal grandfather. François’ parents, Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Marie Amirault, are recorded as residents of Cape Sable. Based on the information regarding the ancestry of Anne Mius—daughter of Jean Mius and Anne Doucet—who was referred to by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne as a Sang-Mêlé, we find another Sang-Mêlé family to have descended from the part Indian” named Joseph Mius d’Azy I.[49] To briefly summarize the findings in relation to the Métis couples recorded by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne in his April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis; each of these Sang-Mêlé couples’ roots lie with either one, or multiple, sons of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and/or Germain Doucet (1641).

One final note in relation to the families of Charles-Amand Mius, François Mius, Jean-Baptiste Mius, and Joseph Mius d’Azy I is that we find all four families recorded on a list of Inhabitant-Acadians” who wished to go to Canada (Québec), written at Boston, Massachusetts and dated June 02, 1766.[50] Charles-Amand is recorded as having six people in his family, François is recorded as having thirteen family members, Jean-Baptiste is recorded as having ten family members, and Joseph II was recorded as having seven family members.[51]

We also find the families of Charles Mieus and Marie (Charles-Amand Mius and Marie Marthe Hébert), Jean Baptist Mieus (Jean-Baptiste Mius), Joseph Mieus and Marie (Joseph Mius and Marie Vincent), and Francois Mieus and Jaune (François Mius and Jeanne Duon), enumerated on a  list of “French Who Desire to Go To Old France” dated August 24, 1763.[52]  According to this list, Joseph II’s family consisted of seven people (3 sons and two daughters), Charles-Amand’s family consisted of six people (two sons and two daughters), Jean-Baptiste’s family consisted of eleven people (six sons and four daughters), and François’ family consisted of twelve people (five sons and five daughters).

     

We therefore have evidence to demonstrate that strong family ties continued to develop among the families of Charles-Amand Mius, Joseph Mius d’Azy II, Jean-Baptiste Mius, and François Mius, when the four families were living in exile in Massachusetts in the 1760s, after the family of Joseph II relocated to Massachusetts from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. These family ties would remain well into the 19th century, upon the return of the families to Southwest Nova Scotia, and would ultimately result in Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne having to request dispensations to marry four very closely-related Sang-Mêlé couples who claimed descent from one or more of these Mius families.[53] Moreover, we have evidence that members of the Mius family were tied to the ancestral practice of fishing, preferred over agricultural pursuits. This evidence comes by way of a petition submitted by Jean-Baptiste Mius when he was residing in exile in Methuen, Massachusetts, dated March 22, 1760. In this petition, Jean-Baptiste requests permission to return to Cape Ann, Massachusetts, where he had lived in previous years during the Deportation with his wife and ten children in order to make better wages fishing, a livelihood he claims to have pursued prior to deportation, when he and his family were living at Cape Sable, Acadia.[54] 

   

It is also worth noting that Louis Mius II also descended from Anne-Marie (Unknown surname) Pinet/Rimbault through his mother, Anne Corporon. Although we remain extremely cautious with DNA analysis and of the current manipulations by some to claim Indigeneity outside any existing cultural framework, Anne-Marie has been found, through mt-DNA testing, to have been of First Nations origin.[55] However, the sources of Indigenous heritage found in Louis Mius II and Théoiste Doucet’s November 22, 1809 marriage continues to accumulate when one considers the fact that Théoiste’s direct paternal ancestor was Germain Doucet (1641), as Germain has been also proven through Y-DNA testing to have been of First Nations origin.[56] We remain extremely careful of any misuse of DNA to conclude Indigeneity, but in our case at hand, DNA results offer additional indications within what is primarily a cultural demonstration about the kinship connections between Acadian-Métis families, especially through the Mius family. In addition, other clues are provided in various historical records, such as the March 09, 1767 deposition given by Pierre Doucet—Germain’s great great-grandson—in the Déclarations de Belle-Île-en-Mer, in which Doucet states that Germain had “venu du Canada”—come from Canada—and not France, as Pierre’s other ancestors had. For the most part, the phrase“venu du Canada” historically meant “originating from New France;” that is, most likely from the region of Quebec, but in some historical records pertaining to Acadia, it also meant that the person was of First Nations origin, such as in the case of the 1632 baptismal record of André Lasnier.[57] 

 André Lasnier was baptized on December 27, 1632 in Libourne, France.[58]

What is especially important about André’s baptismal record is that he was the son of Loys (Louis) Lasnier and une femme Canadienne—a First Nations woman—that he was approximately 12 years old at the time of his baptism, and that he was born at Port de La Tour in Acadia. Therefore, he was born circa 1620 in Acadia in the same region of origin as the Sang-Mêlé Mius descendants of Southwest Nova Scotia.

Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont asserts that, in the case of André’s baptismal record, the term “une femme Canadienne” means that she was a First Nations woman, and therefore, André was the first Métis child recorded to have been born in Acadia, although he was brought back to France to be baptized at age 12 years.[59] In addition, Y-DNA testing has confirmed, in the case of Germain Doucet (1641), that having “venu du Canada” demonstrates that Germain was of First Nations origin, at least paternally, supporting here the information provided by Père d'Entremont.

     

As in the case of the wives of Philippe Mius d’Entremont II, the online community of amateur genealogists have taken it upon themselves to invent a name for Germain Doucet’s mother. According to the Wikitree profile for Doucet’s mother,[60] her name was given as “Marie Jeanne (Kjipuktuk) Unknown,” and she is also alleged to have been born circa 1610. This information has proven to be false. Until the recent Y-DNA results of Doucet’s direct male descendants came back as First Nations in origin, it was common belief among most professional genealogists that he was the son of Germain Doucet, Sieur de La Verdure.[61] This is simply a case of problematic genealogical work done by amateur genealogists, as these errors are taken by them as fact, and are then perpetuated online, and in physical format.  

 

It is at this point that this report returns to a discussion of Théoiste Doucet’s paternal ancestry.

Théoiste’s father, Charles Doucet, was the son of Joseph Doucet and Anne Surette. Although no record of Charles’ marriage to Felicité Mius has yet been found in the archival data, based on the fact that Joseph and Anne re-settled in the Cape Sable region after Deportation, and the knowledge that their children attended Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s parish at Saint-Anne-du-Ruisseau, it is evident that Charles was the son of Joseph and Anne. This relationship is affirmed by Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont: Charles was approximately 80 years old when he was buried on March 03, 1817, which confirms that he was born circa 1737.[62] Joseph and Anne’s son, Charles Doucet, was born on December 21, 1735 and baptized on January 22, 1736 at Port Royal, Acadia. The evidence shows that the two Charles Doucets mentioned here are one and the same.

 

Joseph Doucet and Anne Surette married on December 08, 1730 at Port Royal, Acadia. Joseph was born on March 12, 1706 and baptized on March 13, 1706. Joseph’s father was Claude Doucet dit Maître Jean and his mother was Anne Comeau. Claude Doucet dit Maître Jean, was 78 years old on December 06, 1754 and was therefore, born circa 1676. According to various censuses of Acadia taken in the late 1600s and early 1700s, Germain Doucet (1641) and Marie Landry had a son named Claude Doucet, born circa 1674. Therefore, Claude Doucet dit Maître Jean was the son of Germain (1641).[63]

     

When this genealogical information is combined with the above-mentioned excerpts from the writings of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne and Captain William Moorsom, it is apparent that the Indigenous heritage found in Théoiste Doucet’s paternal ancestry was very distant in terms of generations, yet she and her husband, Louis Mius II, belonged to the Sang-Mêlé caste and were considered inferior to their Pur neighbours for that reason, nevertheless. The Sang-Mêlés people were not considered to be regular Acadians, nor were they considered to be full “Sauvages”; they were in between the two cultures, described by various actors on a collective and distinctive basis using different ethnonyms also used across Canada and the United States to identify diverse Métis populations. In this particular case, per their unique history, kinship ties, and geographical location, they were the Acadian-Métis people.


9. The Caste System in Southwest Nova Scotia       

In addition to the genealogical contributions of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne and Captain William Moorsom, some select excerpts from various letters and sermons of Père Sigogne allow the reader to fully grasp the extent of the hatred and prejudice inflicted upon the Métis of Southwest Nova Scotia by their Pur neighbours, in the early 1800s. The first of these excerpts comes from a letter written by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne to Monseigneur Pierre Denaut on January 26, 1800 at Baie Sainte-Marie: 

Il règne ici un préjugé qui me semble contraire à la charité & à l’esprit de la religion & même de l’église parce qu’on le porte trop loin et on l’appuie de lautorité de la coutume du pays, & même de celle du clergé. C’est le mariage contracté ou à contracter entre des gens qu’ils appellent Blancs & d’autres qui ont ce qu’ils appellent du sang mêlé, qui n’est pas du goût de bien du monde ici, malgré l’égalité de la condition d’ailleurs, la supériorité de la fortune, même de la vertu & des talens. Quelques-uns aiment mieux voir leurs enfans non mariés que de les voir alliés avec des familles même tant soit peu entachées, et la plupart préfèrent les marier à des degrés prohibés par l’église: de sorte qu’ils ont plus d’égard pour leur vain préjugé que de soumission pour l’ordre & la règle dans l’église. On va ici jusqu’à dire qu’on refuseroit au sacrament de l’ordre un jeune homme qui auroit la moindre tache de sang sauvage. Cela me paroît nouveau & ridicule, je n’ai jamais entendu parler de semblables irrégularités. On ne trouve aucun canon que je sache de l’ancienne église d’Afrique qui fasse mention d’un pareil cas; cependant il me semble qu’il y devoit bien avoir des familles romaines alliées avec les familles africaines. Le préjugé me paroît difficile à détruire; j’en ai dit quelque chose en public, mais avec précaution pour ne point offenser les esprits; mais je l’ai bien tourné en ridicule en particulier dans l’occasion; il me fâche qu’il faille ici les Marier parens au mépris des loix de l’église parce que l’ayeul du trisayeul des personnes à marier étoit un sauvage, peut-être plus Chrétien qu’eux. J’attens avec soumission & respect l’opinion de Votre Grandeur sur ce préjugé.” [64] 

Translated, this reads:

There reigns here a prejudice that seems to be contradictory to the charity and the spirit of the religion and also of the church because it has been carried too far and it is supported by authority and the custom of the area, and even by the clergy. It is the marriage that is contracted or to be contracted between those who are called Whites and others who they call sang mêlé [i.e. the Mixed-Blood], which is not accepted by people here, despite the equality of conditions to others, superiority in wealth, and of virtue and talent. Some people prefer to see their children unmarried than to see them married into the families that are even slightly tainted, and most prefer that they marry to the degrees that are prohibited by the church: so that they have more respect for their vain prejudice than for order and rule in the church. We can see here that there is a refusal to marry any young man with any drop of Savage blood. This is new and ridiculous to me, I have never heard of such irregularities. I have found no canon from the ancient church of Africa that mentions similar; there seems to have been Roman families that were allied with the African families. This prejudice seems difficult to destroy; I said something in public, but with precaution so I would not offend the spirits; but I have been ridiculed for this on occasion; It makes me angry that to Marry couples is in violation of the laws of the church because one of the ancestors of their great-grandfathers married a Savage, perhaps more Christian than them. I wait with submission and respect for your opinion on this prejudice, your Greatness.

This letter was written only a short while into Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s time spent among the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia and the prejudice against the Sang-Mêlés people clearly came as a shock to him, so much so that he made the observation that the “Sauvage” might have been more Christian than a member of his own parish. A further excerpt comes from Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis, mentioned in Gérald C. Boudreau’s 1992 work entitled, Le père Sigogne et les Acadiens du sud-ouest de la Nouvelle-Écosse:

Il existe […] ici un préjugé que je crois peu chrétien, peu charitable et peu juste en lui-même. Mon monde a une répugnance horrible pour s’entr’allier avec ceux qui ont ce qu’ils appellent le sang mêlé. Je veux dire avec ceux dont les familles proviennent originairement du mariage d’un français avec une sauvagesse et vice versa; ils ont même un souverain mépris pour ceux-là avec mérite et même supérieur. J’ai ouvertement attaqué ce sot préjugé par rapport aux dispenses et j’ai beaucoup déplu aux gens qui ont, disent-ils, le sang pur. Je le combats encore quoiqu’avec plus de réserve. Mais les gens au sang mêlé, pour la plus grande partie, se conduisent si mal qu’ils me couvrent de confusion d’avoir pris leur défense, et se rendent en vérité dignes du mépris qu’on fait d’eux. Ils se livrent sans discrétion à toutes sortes de vices. Les désordres de tout genre règnent parmi eux dans un degré éminent. Ils ont, à ce qu’il semble, les passions plus fortes que les autres, ou bien, le mépris qu’on fait d’eux les réduit au point de n’avoir aucun sentiment de vertu ni d’honneur. Si j’étais aux pieds de Votre Grandeur j’entrerais plus dans le détail.”[65]

This translates to: 

There exists [...] here a prejudice that I believe to be unchristian, not very charitable and little just in itself. [Those in] my world have a horrible repugnance to unite with those who have what they call mixed-blood. I mean with those whose families come originally from the marriage of a Frenchman with a savage woman and vice versa; they even have a sovereign contempt for those with merit and even superior. I openly attacked this foolish prejudice to the exemptions and I have much displeased the people who have, they say, pure blood. I still fight it, though with more reserve. But people with mixed-blood, for the most part, behave so badly that they cover me with confusion for having defended them, and are truly worthy of the contempt of them. They indulge without discretion all sorts of vices. Disorders of every kind reign among them in an eminent degree. They have, it seems, passions stronger than the others, or the contempt of them reduces them to the point of having no sense of virtue or honor. If I were at the feet of Your Greatness, I would go into more detail.

The above passage illustrates that a similar situation existed among Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s flock in 1809 as that he was faced with in 1800. Within the same letter from April 29, 1809, he writes: 

Je suis obligé de revenir aux dispenses. Je crois devant Dieu qu’en raison de la religion, de la nation et du langage, il est nécessaire d’en accorder. Si je voyais quelqu’inclination aux Anglais de se faire catholiques, j’encouragerais les mariages avec eux, mais je vois tout le contraire. (j’ai cependant reçu trois ou quatre abjurations à Sainte-Marie). Je supplie donc Votre Grandeur d’accorder dispense pour le mariage aux personnes suivantes : premièrement, à Charles Amirault, veuf, avec Scolastique Surette, parents au troisième degré de consanguinité et alliés au troisième mêlé du second. Ces deux personnes appartiennant aux meilleures familles à Sainte-Anne. Deuxièmement, à Joseph O’Burd avec Osithes Douset, parents au troisième degré. Troisièmement à Isaac Miuce avec N. Moulaisons (Je suis éloigné et je ne sais pas positivement le nom de baptême de la fille.), parents aussi au troisième degré. Quatrièmement, à Louis Miuce avec Théoiste Doucet, parents au même degré. Cinquièmement, à Dominique Miuce avec Anne Miuce, également parents au troisième degré. Ce dernier couple, après s’être promis foi de mariage, a eu un commerce criminel dont est provenu un enfant déja âgé de deux mois. Ces quatres derniers couples sont de la caste dêtestée des gens mêlés…” [66]

The English translation of this reads;

I am obligated to return to the exemptions. I believe before God that because of religion, nation and language, it is necessary to give them. If I saw any inclination for the English to become Catholics, I would encourage marriages with them, but I see quite the opposite. (I did, however, receive three or four abjurations at Sainte-Marie). I beg your Grandeur to grant the marriage exemption to: firstly, to Charles Amirault, widower, with Scholastic Surette, relatives in the third degree of consanguinity, and allied in the third mixed with the second. These two people belong to the best families in Sainte-Anne. Secondly, to Joseph OBurd with Osithes Douset, relatives to the third degree. Thirdly to Isaac Miuce with N. Moulaisons (I am distant from them and I do not know positively the baptismal name of the girl), relatives also in the third degree. Fourthly, to Louis Miuce with Théoiste Doucet, relatives to the same degree. Fifthly, to Dominique Miuce with Anne Miuce, also relatives to the third degree. This last couple, having promised themselves of marriage, had a criminal business from which a child already two months old has come. These last four couples are of the detested caste of mixed people.

This last excerpt refers to the previously-mentioned marriage of Louis Mius and Théoiste Doucet of the caste dêtestée des gens mêlés,” or detested caste of mixed people. Most significantly, it is also worth mentioning that all of the families of the Sang-Mêlés people mentioned in this excerpt descended from Joseph Mius d’Azy I and/or from Germain Doucet (1641).[67] [68] 

Let us return to the writings of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne. Père Sigogne did lose patience with  the Acadian-Métis people over time and debated leaving his post shortly after he arrived in Southwest Nova Scotia, largely because of his dismay over the scandals in the Sang-Mêlé caste. We further witness Père Sigogne’s frustration and hopelessness in the following excerpt from page 05 of his June 28, 1804 letter (“Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 51”) written to Monseigneur Pierre Denaut:[69] 

Je suis réduit à ce point-là parce que jai voulu me ménager entre les partis, et ne rebuter personne. Jai réussi à la vérité sous ce rapport, car tous viennent à léglise et au tribunal de la pénitence. Depuis la visite, ceux qui ne sen étaient point approchés auparavant y sont venus. En ce point je crois gagner. Périsse le temporel, pourvu que le diable y perde ! Jen ferai le sacrifice, sil le faut, afin que Dieu en soit mieux servi. Libentissime impendam et super impendar ipse. Peut-être le temps amènera-t-il une fin à ma misère ! Et verrai-je par la grâce de Dieu de meilleurs jours ! Coarctor autem e duobus desiderium habens dissolvii; je veux dire dêtre délivré de ma charge ici. Permanere autem necessarium, parce quautrement les brebis ségareraient ici sans pasteur. Consultant donc le besoin et la nécessité, si tel est le bon plaisir de Votre Grandeur, je continuerai ici, au moins pour quelque temps, cédant aux circonstances. Jai cependant déclaré au peuple que puisque je ne pouvais être assuré de ma subsistance avec eux, je la chercherais ailleurs sils ne voulaient pas mieux agir, que je ne me considérais plus obligé à leur égard, refusant les premiers de tenir leurs promesses. Jaurai à souffrir il est vrai, mais je men consolerai, espérant ma récompense dailleurs, et je me croirai toujours assez satisfait ici pourvu que je puisse mériter lapprobation et lestime de Votre Grandeur dont je me dis avec le plus profond respect,

Le très humble et très obéissant serviteur,

Sigogne, prêtre…”[70]

The translation of this reads;

I am reduced to this point because I wanted to spare myself between the parties, and not put off anyone. I have succeeded in truth in this respect, for all come to the church and the penitence court. Since the visit, those who had not come near before came there. At this point I think I win. Perish the temporal, provided the devil loses there! I will make the sacrifice, if necessary, so that God may be better served. Libertissime impendam et super impendar ipse. Perhaps time will bring an end to my misery! And will I see by the grace of God better days! Coarctor autem e duobus desiderium habens dissolvii; I mean to be delivered from my charge here. Permanere autem necessarium, because otherwise the sheep would go astray here without a pastor. Consult therefore the need and the necessity, if this is the pleasure of Your Greatness; I will continue here, at least for some time, yielding to the circumstances. I told the people, however, that since I could not be assured of my sustenance with them, I would seek it elsewhere if they did not wish to act better, that I no longer considered myself obliged to them, refusing the first to hold their promises. I will have to suffer, it is true, but I will console myself, hoping for my reward elsewhere, and I will always believe myself satisfied enough, so long as I can merit the approbation and esteem of Your Greatness, of which I say to myself with the utmost respect,

The most humble and obedient servant,

Sigogne, Priest[71]

Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne ultimately chose to continue working with the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia, despite his obvious frustrations with his parishioners. It is fortunate that Père Sigogne remained in Southwest Nova Scotia to tend to his flock, as he left many additional, highly-detailed writings. One such contribution is the following excerpt from a sermon that he presented to the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau on October 20, 1826, entitled, “Remontrances au sujet du Mariage;”[72]

Aussi l’ai-je remarqué devant vous à ma dernière [visite; &] n’ai-je pas manqué de vous le déclarer lorsque je vous ai parlé au sujet de l’entreprise de faire venir un autre Prêtre. & s’il n’en étoit pas ainsi, comm[en]t un jeune étourdi auroit-il pu avoir l’audace de désobéir aussi publiquem[en]t à son père & de violer les loix de l’église qui lui interdisent le Mariage avec ses parentes, & comm[en]t se soit-il trouvé des gens aussi lâches pour le soutenir & applauder dans son forfeit, comme j’apprens malheureusem[en]t qu’il n’y en a eu que trop qui l’ont fait & ce qu’il y a de plus triste ce sont les discours audacieux et les propos insultans tenus tout haut & publiquem[en]t qu’on m’a rapport[s] & qui m’ont fait frémir, parce que j’ai tout lieu de les croire par les témoignages réitérés qu’on m’en a donné[s] depuis cette maudite & exécrable action. & plus encore, c’est qu’il y en a d’autres, m’assure-t-on, qui sont dans la disposition de faire de même, s’ils trouvent la même opposition à leurs désirs déraisonnables & à leurs passions sans frein. Hélas, hélas, où en sommes-nous? Je me vois forcé de vous le dire ici, ô gens dont le sang est mêlé, si on vous fuit, si on vous dédaigne, si on refuse d’allier avec vous, n’est-ce pas à cause de votre mauvaise conduit, [4] de scandales & de désordres qui règnent ouvertem[en]t parmi ceux de cette caste plus que parmi les autres? En effet, n’a-t-on pas vu & ne voit-on pas encore de tems en tems des actions qui nous font rougir & éloignent nos voisins de notre église, en y voyant régner les adultères & les concubinages publics? & cela parmi vous ô race dégénérée, race corrompue & incestueuse. Il faut vous dire la vérité; à mon arrive, croyant sincèrem[en]t devant Dieu que le mépris que je m’appercevois qu’on faisoit de vous étoit peu charitable, j’ai pris votre parti parce que la charité couvroit à mes yeux la multitude de vos péchés & que je désirois qu’on oubliât le passé, & qu’en formant de nouveaux établissem[en]ts pour le civil & la religion, j’espérois pas mes soins & mon ministère voir régner parmi vous l’union, la foi, l’harmonie conjugale, la pureté des mœurs, la probité, la tempérance & la sobriété; c’est là le fruit que j’attendois de mes travaux en faisant les catechisms avec soin & les premières communions avec solemnité. J’attendois, oui j’attendois tout cela & non moins que cela de vous; & tel est le principe de l’indulgence & de la faveur que je vous ai montrée au scandale & aux reproches des autres qui m’en ont assez témoignés[sic] leur mécontentem[en]t. Mais hélas, à mon [5] grand chagrin, j’ai bientôt vu par le ridem[en]t des promesses faites, par les terribles scandales qui ont paru, qu’il falloit en rougissant de votre conduite que je changeasse de manière de penser sur votre compte. Aussi me suis-je bien promis de ne plus ni encourager ni soutenir des unions contestées pour la raison de la tache du sang mêlé, laissant le reste à Dieu. Voilà devant Dieu, ô Xens, la simple exposition de mon cœur. Vous pouvez maintenant voir à qui vous en prendre; c’est mon malheur mais ce n’est pas ma faute. Il est pourtant vrai qu’il y a des familles dans la caste mêlée à qui je ne puis faire de reproches; aussi me fais-je un devoir de leur rendre justice & de les respecter, mais la justice & le respect que je leur dois & que je suis disposé de leur rendre ne doit [doivent] pas aller au point de laisser le vice impuni; c’est pour eux un accident d’être au rang de ces familles-là mais je n’y peux rien; ainsi je prie ceux-là de prendre en bonne part ce que j’ai fait & ce que je dis. J’ai mesuré et pesé devant Dieu mes parole. C’est aux vices, c’est aux désordres, c’est aux scandales que je fais la gue[r]re, c’est aux yvrognes, aux rebelles, aux vitieux[sic], aux adultères, aux concubinaires publics et aucun qui les approuvent & les soutiennant, [6] qu’ils soient des familles blanches ou entachées, pures ou mêlées, que mes reproches s’adressent & non pas à ceux qui vivent en Xens, quels qu’ils soient? Que les égarés & les vitieux, que les incestueux & les adultères reviennent au vrai chemin, à la vertu & au bon ordre, en un mot à la pénitence, mes reproches ne les regarderont plus…”[73]

Translated, this reads: 

So did I notice it In front of you at my last [visit; &] did I not fail to tell you when I spoke to you about the initiative to bring another Priest. & if it was not so, how could a dazed young man have the audacity to also publicly disobey his father and to violate the laws of the church who forbid his Marriage with his relatives, how could anyone have been so cowardly to support him & applaud in his forfeit, as I unfortunately learned that there were only too many who did, and the saddest thing in the daring speeches and the insulting words spoken aloud and publicly told to me & that made me shudder, because I have every reason to believe them by the repeated testimonies that were given to me since that accursed & execrable action. & what is more, there are others, I am assured, who are in the disposition to do the same, if they find the same opposition to their unreasonable desires and their passions without restraint. Alas, alas, where are we? I am forced to tell you here, O people whose blood is mixed, if you are fleeing, if you disdain, if we refuse to ally with you, is it not because of your bad conduct, [4] scandals & disorders that reign openly among those of this caste, more than among the others? Indeed, have we not seen & not seen yet from time to time actions that make us blush & move our neighbors away from our church, seeing in it the reign of adulterers and public concubinages? & that among you, degenerate race, corrupt and incestuous race. It is necessary to tell you the truth; upon my arrival, sincerely believing before God that the contempt which I perceived they were making of you was not very charitable, I took your side because charity covered in my eyes the multitude of your sins & that I wished that the past be forgotten, and that by forming new establishments for the civil and the religion, I did not expect my care and my ministry to see reign among your union, faith, marital harmony, purity of morals, probity, temperance, and sobriety; this is the fruit that I expected from my labours by doing catechisms carefully & the first communions with solemnity. I was waiting, yes, I was waiting for all this, and not less than that of you; and that is the principle of indulgence and favour that I showed you to the scandal and reproaches of others who have given me enough testimony [sic] of their dissatisfaction. But alas, to my great sorrow, I soon saw by the wrinkle of the promises made, by the terrible scandals which have appeared, that it is necessary, by blushing at your conduct, that I change my manner of thinking about you. So I promised myself that I would no longer encourage or support disputed unions because of the stain of mixed blood, leaving the rest to God. This is before God, oh Christians, the simple exposition of my heart. You can now see who you are going to; it is my misfortune but it is not my fault. It is true, however, that there are families in the mixed caste whom I cannot reproach; so I make it a point to do them justice and to respect them, but the justice and respect which I owe them, and which I am, disposes of their render must not go to the point of leaving vice unpunished; it is an accident for them to be among those families, but I cannot help it; so I pray those to take in good part what I did & what I say. I measured and weighed my words before God. It is with vices, it is with the disorders, it is with scandals that I make war, it is to drunkards, rebels, old [sic], adulterers, public concubinaries and none who approve and support them, whether they are white or tainted families, pure or mixed, that my reproaches are directed & not to those who live as Christians, whatever they are. May the misguided and the vicious, the incestuous, and the adulterers return to the true path, to virtue and good order, in a word to penance, my reproaches will no longer look at them…”

This passage indicates that Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne made another attempt to help the Sang-Mêlés people  (the Acadian-Métis) a full 26 years after his initial recorded reaction to this discrimination and segregation into castes among the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia based on the presence of “Sauvage” ancestry. Why is the mention of a caste system so important? Its relevance lies in the definition of the word “caste.” Caste is defined variously as:

1: one of the hereditary social classes in Hinduism that restrict the occupation of their members and their association with the members of other castes

2: (a) a division of society based on differences of wealth, inherited rank or privilege, profession, occupation, or race; (b) the position conferred by caste standing: prestige art and religion have lost caste—F. L. Baumer

3: a system of rigid social stratification characterized by hereditary status, endogamy, and social barriers sanctioned by custom, law, or religion

4: a specialized form (such as the worker of an ant or bee) of a polymorphic social insect that carries out a particular function in the colony soldier castes for fighting enemy ants—casteism play \ˈkas-ˌti-zəm\ noun”[74]

The state of Acadian-Métis people in that area is thus most closely characterized by “a system of rigid social stratification characterized by hereditary status, endogamy, and social barriers sanctioned by custom, law, or religion.[75] Based on this definition of caste, it is appropriate to conclude that there were two castes of Acadians among Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s flock of parishioners in Southwest Nova Scotia, determined by the presence or absence of Indigenous heritage in one’s family ancestry. This caste system is significant, as it was created by the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia themselves, and not by Père Sigogne, who simply witnessed it. This clearly demonstrates that the Acadian-Métis were not simply assimilated by either the First Nations or the Acadian peoples in Nova Scotia. On the contrary, we have historical evidence showing that a distinct Acadian-Métis people emerged, and were perceived collectively and distinctively by both outsiders and the Acadians Purs themselves as a different people and caste, this on the basis of their relation to Indigeneity.[76] 

 Sigogne’s sermon to the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, 1826.[77]

A final excerpt from Père Sigogne appears in his November 05, 1826 sermon, presented to the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, which is entitled, “Pénitence Imposée:

Nous avons à gémir du mauvais ex(ample), à nous donner de garde d’en causé(r) & à prier Dieu qu’il nous en préserve pour la suite. J’entens & je m’apperçois qu’il (règne) à cette occasion beaucoup d’animosité & que même la haine, la rancune a (ont) passé jusqu’aux enfans & que ceux d’entre vous qui ont cette tache infortunée de sang mêlé son traités de sauvages ou au moins appellés par ce nom; l’idée que porte ce mot est insultante; il me semble, Xens, que puisque cette tache est prise & considérée comme une dégradation parmi vous, qu’on devrait se contenter d’arrêter les alliances quand elles déplaisent, mais non pas faire un sujet de reproche d’une chose qu’on ne peut ni(sic) prévenir. Quant à moi je suis af(f)ligé de cette distinction, je la regarde comme un préjugé du monde dont je ne fais aucun cas devant Dieu lorsque les personnes de cette classe dénigrée sont des personnes de vertu & de religion. Mais comme ce préjugé n’est pas particulier à ces pays-ci, il n’est pas dans mon pouvoir de larrêter...”[78]

In English, this translates as: 

We complain about bad examples that cause us to not care and ask God to preserve us for the future. I listen and I see much animosity and even hatred, the discrimination that has been passed down to the children and those of you who have mixed-blood are treated as Savages or at least labelled with this name; The idea behind this word is insulting; it seems to me, Christians, that if this drop of blood is taken and considered by you as a degradation, then we should be content to stop these alliances when it displeases you, but to make this a subject of disapproval is not preventable. When I am afflicted by this distinction, I see it as a prejudice of the world that makes no case before God whenever people of this denigrated class are people of virtue and religion. However, this prejudice is not something unique to this area, it is not in my power to stop it…”      

Once again, there is an air of hopelessness in Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s writings pertaining to the Métis people of Southwest Nova Scotia in the early 1800s. Père Sigogne again gave up trying to help members of the Sang-Mêlé caste by November 05, 1826. His valuable historical contributions, however,  through sermons and correspondence, clearly illustrate the existence of Acadian-Metis people in the area.

A sermon, Pénitence Imposée, given by Sigogne to parishioners of of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, 1826.[79]


10. The Bois-Brûlés of Southwest Nova Scotia  

Considerable research has been undertaken regarding the descendants of the Sang-Mêlé caste. We know that François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père did provide his personal observations of the Mius and Doucet families of Tusket Forks, now known as Quinan, Nova Scotia, in his contribution to Henri-Raymond Casgrain’s 1890 anthology entitled, Collection des Documents Inédits sur le Canada et l’Amérique Publiés par le Canada-Français —– Tome Troisième.[80] [81] Rameau de Saint-Père made two voyages to Nova Scotia to conduct fieldwork in relation to his writings about the Acadians. The first voyage occurred in 1860, and the second voyage to Acadia in 1888. [82] Rameau de Saint-Père’s observations in “Documents Inédits du Canada-Français: Documents sur l’Acadie: CII: Remarques sur les Registres de Belle-Isle-en-Mer, par Mr E. Rameau de Saint-Père” serve here as primary evidence.

François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père published an account of his 1860 voyage to Acadia in the Parisian newspaper, L’economiste Français.[83] [84] The following excerpt from “Documents Inédits du Canada-Français: Documents sur l’Acadie: CII: Remarques sur les Registres de Belle-Isle-en-Mer, par Mr E. Rameau de Saint-Père” tells of his observations of the Mius and Doucet families whom he studied at Tusket Forks, Nova Scotia during one of his two voyages to Acadia:[85]

Ces Métis ont pu être légitimes, parce que Doucet a pu devenir veuf après son arrivée, mais ils ont pu aussi être le résultat de quelque libertinage, comme il advint pour Mius d’Entremont. Ce dernier vint en Acadie dans une situation analogue à celle de Doucet, étant l’un et lautre chefs de ces bandes armées qui se disputèrent l’Acadie; or Mius a laissé plusieurs enfants naturels métis, et il se trouve aujourd’hui, fait assez bizarre, que lon rencontre aux Forkes de Tousquet, comté de Yarmouth, un grand nombre de familles métisses portent précisément les noms de Doucet et de Mius, de sorte que les Bois Brûlés, issus de ces deux chefs militaires de l’Acadie primitive, sont présentement réunis et agglomérés dans la même canton entre Pomkou (Pubnico) et Port-Royal.[86]

Translated, this reads: 

These Métis could be legitimate, as Doucet became a widower after his arrival, but they could also be resultant of some freedom, as is the case for the Mius d’Entremonts. The latter came to Acadia in a different situation to that of Doucet, one and another commanders of the military bands that protected Acadia; Mius left many natural métis children, and we see today, something very strange, we see at Tusket Forks (Quinan), Yarmouth county, a large number of métis families with precisely the surnames of Doucet and Mius, a sort of Bois-Brûlés (“Burnt Woods”), descended from these two military commanders of early Acadia, currently reunited and clustered in the same community between Pubnico and Port Royal.[87]

 

As with the Sang-Mêlés who Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne encountered during his time spent among the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia in the early 1800s, the common Indigenous heritage ties of these Bois-Brûlés and Métis were Germain Doucet (1641) and Joseph Mius d’Azy I. The key message of this excerpt is that François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père referred to these Mius and Doucet descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Germain Doucet (1641) collectively and distinctively, as “Bois-Brûlés” and “Métis;” not as “Acadians.”[88] 

     

Further evidence to support the assertion that François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père came to the region of Southwest Nova Scotia in the latter half of the 19th century lies in l’Université de Moncton’s Centre d’Études Acadiennes Anselme-Chiasson collection of original copies of his personal correspondences and manuscripts from that time period.[89] Many of these documents were written during Rameau de Saint-Père’s time spent in Southwest Nova Scotia, or are personal correspondence between him and residents of the region, primarily with a Southwest Nova Scotia native living in Boston, named Louis-Athanase Surette.[90] [91] [92] It is significant that Rameau de Saint-Père makes frequent mention of the mixed-blood people of the area, using the word “Métis” to describe them over thirty times in his work, Une colonie féodale en Amérique: l’Acadie (1604-1710) Edition 1. This particular volume was published long before the word “Métis” was used by Louis Riel in Western Canada.[93]                 

     

In his correspondence with Joseph Alphonse Deveau regarding the mixed-blooded Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia, Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont notes,

Lorsque vous parles des acadiens de la region, je suppose qu’il s’agit des comtes de Digby et de Yarmouth. Il y a quelques familles dans ces deux comtes qui ont du sang indien acquis au debut de la colonisation, ou au moins avant la dispersion. Meme apres la Dispersion, apres l’etablissement des Acadiens dans ces comtes, il y a eu des alliances avec les sauvages pur sang. Mais ce qui est arrive surtout c’est que des Acadiens, pur sang ont contracte vers le temps de la Dispersion ou apres des mariages avec des Acadiens “teintes”, meme de loin, de sang indien, en sorte que nombreux sont les familles actuellement, surtout dans le comte de Yarmouth, qui comptent parmi leurs ancestres des Indiens.

Le sang indien qui cule dans les veines des Acadiens du sud-ouest de la Nouvelle-Ecosse a pour source presque unique la famille Mius…”

[94]

 Translated, this reads: 

When you talk about Acadians in the area, I suppose it means the counties of Digby and Yarmouth. There are some families in these two counties who have Indian blood acquired at the beginning of colonization, or at least before the dispersion. Even after the Dispersion, after the establishment of the Acadians in these counties, there were alliances with the pure blood savages. But what has happened is that Acadians, pure blood, have contracted, towards the time of the Dispersion or after, marriages with "tainted" Acadians. Even by far, Indian blood, so that many families nowadays, especially in the county of Yarmouth, count Indians among their ancestors.

The Indian blood that flows through the veins of the Acadians of southwestern Nova Scotia is almost unique to the Mius family…”

We know that the “Bois-Brûlés” and “Métis” of “Mius” and “Doucet” descent who were mentioned  by François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père were, in fact, descendants of, or quite possibly even some of the same people who were labelled as “Sang-Mêlés,” during Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s time spent among the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia.[95] The evidence to support this can be found in an excerpt from Rameau de Saint-Père’s manuscript from his 1860 voyage to Acadia. As mentioned elsewhere in this report, Rameau de Saint-Père’s manuscript was transcribed and published by retired archivist and historian, Ronnie-Gilles Leblanc, in February of 2018, in a book entitled, Le Voyage de Rameau de Saint-Père en Acadie: 1860. This very important excerpt relates to Rameau de Saint-Père’s time spent at Tusket Forks/Quinan, Nova Scotia, and  can be found on page 151 of Leblanc’s transcription:

 

 

Il y a des Anglais mêlés, quoiqu’en petit nombre, avec ceux des Forkes, et il y en a aussi en avant des Forkes. Réflexions de Pothier en route sur les goûts de dépense et de fanfreluche des Acadiens de Ste Anne qui n’existent pas à Pomcoup. Serait-ce donc partout la même différence entre ce qu’ils appellant les sang purs et les sangs mêlés, comme entre Bonaventure et Pasbébiac.[96]

 

 

This translates in English to:

 

 

There are English mixed, although in small numbers, with those of the Forks, and there are some ahead of the Forks too. Reflections of Pothier on the way to the tastes of expense and fanfreluche of the Acadians from Ste Anne who do not exist in Pomcoup. Would this be the same difference everywhere between what they call pure-bloods and mixed-bloods as between Bonaventure and Pasbébiac.

 

 

This excerpt ties the writings of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne with those of François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père and allows us to conclude with certainty that the ethnonyms “Bois-Brûlés” and “Métis” associated with the Mius and Doucet Métis families (noted by Rameau de Saint-Père in 1890, who resided at Tusket Forks/Quinan, Nova Scotia), were of the same ancestry as the Sang-Mêlés of Southwest Nova Scotia discussed by Père Sigogne in his writings 64 to 90 years prior, also confirming a collective description of these Sang-Mêlés people in distinctive terms.

This overlap of such descriptions between the work of Jean-Mandé Sigogne and François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père is key: it suggests that the presence of a similar division between the Sang-Mêlé Acadians (Métis) and the Pur Acadians (the Acadians strictly from European descent) existed elsewhere in Eastern Canada at that time, as it is mentioned by François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père that he observed a similar ethnic division in Bonaventure and Pasbébiac in the Baie-des-Chaleurs region of Québec.[97] 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


11. Marriage Patterns

As the previous passage mentions, marriages between the Acadiens teintes—tainted Acadians, or mixed-bloodsand the Purs did occasionally occur during or upon their return from the Deportation. However, an examination of the registers of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau for the first half of the 19th century reveals that these mixed marriages tended to take place between the Acadiens teintes and newcomers from other countries like France and Ireland, rather than between the Sang-Mêlés and people from families of Pur origin.[98] 

This pattern of marriage was likely the direct result of the vilification of the members of the Sang-Mêlé caste by the members of the Pur caste. The parents of the Pur children would rather their children marry within the prohibited degrees of consanguinity to keep their bloodlines pure and untainted, than for their children to marry members of the Sang-Mêlé people. If a marriage between their children and another Pur person was not possible, the Pur parents would rather their children go unmarried than allow them to marry someone from the Sang-Mêlé.[99]

Outsiders to the Acadian population, during Deportation, and upon return from the Deportation, especially those who settled among the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia after Deportation, would not have had the same inherited prejudice against the Sang-Mêlés that an Acadian who belonged to the Purs would have inherited from their parents. This begs the question; who would not be considered to have been a better choice for potential spouse than an outsider to the community? And who was unaware of the caste system that existed and had oppressed members of one’s own group for generations?

The first example of an outsider marrying an Acadian-Métis is the September 30, 1799 marriage re-validation of the July 08, 1795 marriage of the first author’s ancestors, Jean Marie Cottreau and Marie Hinard. Jean Marie was from Saint-Pair, Normandy, the son of Charles Cottreau and Jeanne Beux. He was born on March 15, 1773 in Saint-Pair-Sur-Mer in Normandy, France and baptized the following day at the parish of Saint-Pair-Sur-Mer in Normandy. Marie’s birth and/or baptismal records are non-existent, or have yet to be found. Marie, however, for the purposes of this report, is the more important person involved in this marriage, as she was the daughter of a fellow Norman named Pierre Hinard and a Métis woman named Anne-Rosalie Mius.

Anne-Rosalie Mius is an especially important ancestor in the first author’s own genealogy and in supporting multiple conclusions made in this report, because of her parentage and because of whom she married.

Although no marriage record has been found, to date, for Pierre and Anne-Rosalie, it is asserted by Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont that Anne-Rosalie was the daughter of the previously-mentioned Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josèphe Préjean.[100] Anne-Rosalie was therefore the full sister of the previously-discussed Louis Mius I, whose son, Louis Mius II, was stated to have been a Sang-Mêlé in a letter written on April 29, 1809 by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis, concerning five couples who required dispensations to marry.[101] No date of birth exists for Anne-Rosalie, but we know that she was buried on March 17, 1807 at approximately the age of 78 years. It is therefore possible to estimate that Anne-Rosalie was born circa 1729. As previously mentioned, no marriage record has yet been found for Pierre Hinard and Anne-Rosalie Mius. Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont attributes an approximate year and place of marriage to Pierre and Anne-Rosalie—circa 1764, while they were in exile in Salem, Massachusetts.[102] Père d’Entremont, moreover, states that Pierre was a widower when he married Anne-Rosalie, and was previously married to an Acadian woman named Marie-Josèphte Bodard.[103] In short, Pierre Hinard and Anne-Rosalie Mius’ marriage is especially important to us because it is a prime example of an outsider to the Acadian community marrying an Acadian-Métis during the Deportation, and settling in the region of Southwest Nova Scotia when it was re-settled by the Acadians, once they were permitted to return.[104]

A second example of an outsider marrying an Acadian-Métis during the early post-Deportation years is that of Jean Marie Cottreau and Pierre Hinard’s fellow Normans, Antoine François Richard and Cécile Doucet. Antoine and Cécile are also the first author’s ancestors (twice) and had their marriage re-validated by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne on September 30, 1799, having been previously married on October 30, 1797. According to their marriage record, Antoine was the son of Charles Richard and Marguerite Allain, and was also originally from Saint-Pair-Sur-Mer in Normandy, France. The marriage record also states that Cécile was the daughter of (Jean) Magloire Doucet and Hélène Amirault. No baptismal record has been found to date for Cécile, nor is the authors aware of a burial record for her. Antoine was, however, buried on July 20, 1813, having died on June 08, 1813 at approximately 43 years old. Therefore, we estimate that Antoine was born circa 1770.[105]     

Now , if we turn to the registers of the parish of Port Royal, we find that Jean Magloire was born and baptized on July 22, 1745 at Port Royal, Acadia. Joseph Doucet and Anne Surette were indeed his parents; therefore, Jean Magloire was the full brother to the Charles Doucet who was previously discussed in this report. As stated before, Charles and Felicité Mius’ daughter, Théoiste Doucet, was stated to have been a Métis (Sang-Mêlé), in the letter written on April 29, 1809 by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis concerning five couples who required dispensations to marry.[106] Felicité was Métis as well, and she was a descendant of Joseph Mius d’Azy I.

 To further demonstrate the strong ties to the outsider families of Pierre Hinard, Jean Marie Cottreau, and Antoine François Richard, we now turn to a letter written by the sister of Jean Marie, Jeanne Cottreau’s, grandson, on June 21, 1879 at the Palais de Versailles in France. Jeanne’s grandson relates in the letter that correspondence was received by Jeanne; a letter which was stated to have been written in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia in Canada by Jean Marie on May 16, 1847. The letter further states that Jean Marie had advised Jeanne that he had been fishing off of Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, was taken prisoner by the English in 1791, and then taken to Halifax, Nova Scotia.

The letter goes on to relate that Jean Marie told Jeanne that he married the daughter of a Frenchman named Pierre Hinard and that they had twelve children together; four daughters and eight sons. Jeanne’s grandson mentions that Jean Marie had written to Jeanne in 1847 requesting vegetable seeds to plant on his land, as he had a lot of land to cultivate.[107] This letter indicates that Jean Marie was a native of Saint-Pair-sur-Mer in Normandy, France. Moreover, it demonstrates how he ended up in Wedgeport, Nova Scotia, that he married Pierre’s daughter, and that Pierre was from France.

Jean Marie Cottreau and Marie Hinard appear to have remained quite close with Marie’s parents, Pierre Hinard and Anne-Rosalie Mius, after their marriage. Indeed,  Jean Marie and Marie resided with Pierre and Anne-Rosalie for a very long time. Evidence to support this conclusion can be found in the enumeration for Pierre’s household on Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s “1816 to 1824 Census; Registre des Familles de la Paroisse de Ste Anne & de Saint Pierre D’Argyle listing the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau” in Argyle, Nova Scotia, and those of the parish of Saint-Pierre in West Pubnico, Nova Scotia. We can easily take from this record that the Hinard household was quite a full one, as Pierre (Anne-Rosalie was deceased by the time the enumeration was made), Jean Marie, Marie, Jean Marie, and Marie’s eleven children, a girl named Marie Anne Mius, and a Joseph Mius, vieux garçon (bachelor) are recorded as being inhabitants of the home when the enumeration was made.

The bachelor, Joseph Mius, who was recorded as residing in the Hinard household on the 1816 to 1824 census, plays a key role when tracing Anne-Rosalie Mius’ ancestry, especially when combined with information found in the July 27, 1806 baptismal record of Jean Marie Cottreau and Marie Hinard’s son, Thomas Eusebe Cottreau. According to Thomas’s baptismal record, he was born on August 14, 1805 and was originally baptized by “Joseph Muice, leur oncle qui demeure avec eux” (Joseph Mius, their uncle who lives with them). Therefore, we now know that the Joseph Mius, vieux garçon recorded in the Hinard household on the 1816 to 1824 census was their uncle, which would mean that Joseph was brother to Pierre Hinard’s wife, Anne-Rosalie Mius. According to Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, Joseph Mius, vieux garcon, was Joseph Mius d’Azy III, who was the son of Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josèphe Préjean; and, as such, Joseph III was born on June 14, 1732, and baptized at Port Royal, Acadia on October 19, 1732.[108]

Further documentation used by Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont to support his conclusion that Pierre Hinard’s wife, Anne-Rosalie Mius, was the daughter of Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josèphe Préjean is that Joseph II and Marie-Josèphe’s son, Pierre Mius, is stated in Anne-Rosalie’s burial record to have been her brother.[109] According to the register of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau in Argyle Nova Scotia, Anne-Rosalie died on March 16, 1807 and was buried on March 17, 1807 at the age of approximately 78 years; therefore, we can estimate that she was born circa 1729. As previously mentioned, Pierre is stated to have been Anne-Rosalie’s brother in the burial record.

Interestingly, Pierre Mius, son of Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josèphe Préjean, was married to Cécile Amirault, daughter of Charles Amirault and Clair Dugas on August 16, 1769 at Cape Sable, Acadia. The ceremony was performed by missionary Charles-François Bailly, and the marriage record can be found in Père Bailly’s “Caraquet Register (the register of Saint-Pierre-aux-Liens in Caraquet, New Brunswick). Connecting Pierre Mius, Joseph Mius d’Azy III, and Anne-Rosalie Mius to Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josèphe Préjean is essential in relation to the previously-discussed letter written on April 29, 1809 by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis concerning five couples who required dispensations to marry.[110] 

This is significant because Pierre, Joseph III, and Anne-Rosalie’s nephew, through their brother, Louis Mius I, was stated in Père Sigogne’s letter to have been a Métis (Sang-Mêlé). Therefore, we can safely assume that Pierre, Joseph III, and Anne-Rosalie were also members of the Sang-Mêlé caste described in the evidence reviewed earlier.[111] [112] The descriptions of these complex family relations are also important, as they show a clear kinship pattern in unions between Acadian-Métis families; even if an outsider married a Métis, their offspring would often marry into other Acadian-Métis families, giving rise to complex, open, yet trackable endogamic practices among the Acadian-Métis people, even after the Deportation.


12. Post-Deportation Settlement  

Having considered the important genealogy of Anne-Rosalie Mius, we return to the discussion regarding outsiders to the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia who married into Métis families of the region, both during the Deportation and in the early years post-Deportation.

The connection between Jean Marie Cottreau and Pierre Hinard should be fairly obvious, but do they connect to Antoine François Richard, the husband of another Acadian-Métis, Cécile Doucet? And why is this important for the reader? Because, slowly and painstakingly for the researcher,  a clearer image is gradually surfacing through the study of the complex family ties that unite the Acadian-Métis people of Nova Scotia. What we see are outsiders, both from Norman fisherman extraction (Richard and Cottreau) and elsewhere, joining in other Acadian-Métis families through marriages post-Deportation; families that have lived in Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau (in the region of Cape Sable), where Père Sigogne preached to the Acadian-Métis population. Not only are we witnessing the contours of complex yet discernable endogamic practices between Acadian-Métis families, but we are able to track the presence of Acadian-Métis historical settlements.  

Going back to the connection between Norman fisherman Cottreau and Richard, we must turn to the manuscript of another outsider who came to Southwest Nova Scotia post-Deportation; a well-to-do Frenchman named François-Lambert Bourneuf. Bourneuf’s manuscript, which is a diary of his life, appeared as a published transcription in Volume 27 of the Collections of the Nova Scotia Historical Society, published in 1947.[113] Now, we know that this published transcription of François-Lambert’s manuscript is incomplete. It was written by his great-grandson, the Honourable Joseph William Comeau, and was presented before the Historical Society of Nova Scotia on January 07, 1947.

The manuscript largely focuses on the life of its author, François-Lambert Bourneuf, who was a native of Renneville in Normandy, France. He was taken prisoner by the English while on a voyage in 1809, and brought to Melville Island near Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he escaped from prison in 1812 and made his way down to Southwest Nova Scotia. It also provides somewhat detailed glimpses into the lives and backgrounds of certain people he met while in Southwest Nova Scotia, such as Pierre, Jean Marie, and Antoine François. The following excerpt, which can be found in the Honourable Joseph William Comeau’s transcription of François-Lambert’s manuscript, provides the “origins stories” told to François-Lambert by Jean Marie and Pierre:

Monsieur Pierre Hinard me raconta qu’il etait parti de France pour aller a St-Dominique. Il etait tout jeune et bien beau. En revenant de St-Dominique, le navire sur lequel il etait avait ete six semaines dans la calme latitude, et en sortant de la il se trouva sur les cotes du Labrador. Les esquimeaux s’emparerent de l‘equipage et tuerent tout le monde excepte lui parce qu’ils l’avaient trouve si jeune et si joli. Hinard resta six mois avec eux et un jour qu’il etait sur la cote il apercut un grig (brig?) anglais qui venait dans la Nouvelle Ecosse. Il fit des signaux et on vint le chercher. On le debarqua a Halifax et de la il vint a Tousquet ou il epousa une Acadienne.

M. Jean Cotreau m’apprit qu’il avait ete fait prisonnier de guerre a St-Pierre Miquelon et amene a Halifax d’ou il deserta avec M. Antonine Richard. Ils vinrent au Cap Sable ou ils se marierent quelque temps apres; le premier avec Marie Hinard, et l’autre avec Cecile Doucet. Ils ne sont jamais retournes en France.

Je suis alle en France en 1846. Je suis alle a St-Pair, pres de Granville, endroit de la naissance d’Antoine Richard et de Jean Cotreau…”[114]

Translated, this reads: 

Mister Pierre Hinard told me that he had left France to go to St-Dominique. He was very young and handsome. Returning from St. Dominic, the vessel on which he had been on had been six weeks in the calm latitude, and upon leaving there found himself on the coasts of Labrador. The Eskimos seized the crew and killed everyone except him because they had found him so young and so handsome. Hinard stayed with them for six months, and one day when he was on the coast he saw an English grig (brig?) who came to Nova Scotia. He signalled and it went to get him. He landed at Halifax and from there he came to Tousquet where he married an Acadian woman.

Mr. Jean Cotreau informed me that he had been taken prisoner of war at St-Pierre Miquelon and brought to Halifax where he deserted with Mr. Antonine Richard. They came to Cape Sable where they got married some time later; the first with Marie Hinard, and the other with Cecile Doucet.

I went to France in 1846. I went to St-Pair, near Granville, place of the birth of Antoine Richard and Jean Cotreau.

This excerpt provides details in relation to how Antoine François Richard, Jean Marie Cottreau, and Pierre Hinard ended up in Southwest Nova Scotia. It is important to note that this version of events for Pierre’s “origins story” is not completely true. As previously discussed, Pierre had first been married to an Acadian woman named Marie-Josèphte Bodard and lived with her and their family in Philadelphia during the early Deportation years.[115] Marie-Josèphte died and Pierre was re-married to Anne-Rosalie Mius, circa 1764, in Salem, Massachusetts, after moving there from Philadelphia, while still in exile. Pierre and Anne-Rosalie finally settled in Wedgeport, Nova Scotia, post-Deportation, with their family.[116] 

This slight inaccuracy in relation to how Pierre Hinard ended up in Southwest Nova Scotia is surely disturbing, and leaves us puzzled as to why such violent actions were attributed to the Inuit people in the first place.  In relation to our narrative, however, the key point of François-Lambert’s manuscript is the documented confirmation concerning Pierre, Jean Marie Cottreau, and Antoine François Richard, that they were all outsiders to the Acadian community, and all three married into Acadian-Métis families.

Highlighting the importance of attentive research cross-examining different sources, there appears to be another inaccuracy in François-Lambert Bourneuf’s retelling of how Pierre Hinard arrived in the region of Tusket, Nova Scotia. Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont also had a similar belief, noting that Pierre married his first wife, Marie-Josèphte Bodard, either in Acadia prior to the Deportation, or that he married her during the Deportation.[117] What we do know for certain is that Pierre did not first arrive at Tusket and marry Marie-Josèphte there, as her family was residing at Piziquid, Acadia, pre-Deportation.[118] Therefore, it is more accurate to conclude that Pierre had landed at Piziquid, not Tusket, after leaving Halifax, Nova Scotia. It is also possible that he made his “origins story” to compete with that of Jean Marie Cottreau and Antoine François Richard; however, it is more likely that the first explanation is the correct one.

These histories demonstrate the mobility of the people who were often experiencing terrible circumstances, forcing them to flee. It is suggested that Pierre Hinard was initially residing in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with his first wife, Marie-Josèphte Bodard during the Deportation years. But again, is there any evidence to support this? To begin with, Petrus Hiner (Pierre Hinard) and his wife, Maria Josepha (Marie-Josèphte Bodard) brought a son named Johannes Gulielmus Hiner (Jean-Guillaume Hinard) to be baptized at Saint Joseph’s Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on June 01, 1762. Guillaume’s godfather was stated to have been Joanne Leprince (Jean LePrince) and his godmother was Magdalene Corperon (Madeleine Corporon). The baptism was performed by Father Ferdinand Farmer, a record of which can be found in the register of Saint Joseph’s Church.[119] According to Père d’Entremont’s Histoire de Wedgeport de 1767 à Nos Jours (1995), Pierre Hinard and Marie-Josèphte Bodard left Philadelphia in 1763 and went to Maryland, where she died shortly after their arrival there.[120] Subsequent to her death, Pierre left his and Marie-Josèphte’s three children in Maryland with her mother, Marie Bodard, and he fled Maryland aboard a cargo ship that became shipwrecked at Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Père d’Entremont suggests that his future father-in-law, Joseph Mius d’Azy II, could have arrived in Massachusetts at the same time as Pierre, but this cannot be substantiated.[121] We do know, however, that Pierre later married Joseph II’s daughter, Anne-Rosalie Mius, in Salem, Massachusetts, circa 1765.

We also know that Joseph Mius d’Azy II was in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania during the first part of the Deportation years, at the same time that Pierre Hinard and Marie-Josèphte Bodard were living there because, according to the register of Saint Joseph’s Church, Joseph Diezy (Joseph Mius d’Azy II), a widower, married Marià Vincent (Marie Vincent), a widow, there on October 20, 1761.[122] Archival data also indicates that, prior to the time Joseph Mius II and his family spent at Piziquid, Acadia, he and his family were still residing in Baccaro, Acadia as late as 1732; this knowledge is based on the baptismal record of Joseph II and his first wife, Marie-Josèphe Préjean’s son, Joseph Mius d’Azy III, in which the family is stated to have been residents of “Bascareo Cap de Sable” (Baccaro, Cape Sable).[123] 

Showing the proximity of these Métis families, Joseph Mius d’Azy III eventually died celibate and was recorded as “Joseph Mius, vieux garcon” (bachelor) when he was residing in the household of his sister, Anne-Rosalie Mius and her husband, Pierre Hinard.[124] He was recorded as “Joseph Muice, leur oncle qui demeure avec eux” (their uncle who lives with them) when he was residing in the household of his niece, Marie Hinard, and her husband, Jean Marie Cottreau.[125] 

But when exactly did Joseph Mius d’Azy II move his first wife, Marie-Josèphe Préjean and their family to the region of Piziquid, Acadia? It is hard to know for certain. All we really know is that they had to have been living there before 1755, as, according to Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, this was the year when three ships arrived in the region of des Mines to transport the Acadians residing there to Philadelphia.[126] The ship called the Three Friends transported the residents of Piziquid to Philadelphia, while the residents of Grand-Pré and those of the Village des Gaspareaux were transported there on the Hannah and the Swan. Needless to say, the Three Friends and its crew were not very friendly toward the Acadians of Piziquid, Acadia. Given the information concerning the Deportation of the Acadians of the region of des Mines, we know that many of the Mulattos, or Acadian-Métis, of the regions of Grand Pré, River Canard and Pizziquid who were mentioned by Lieutenant-Governor Paul Mascarene, in the January 04, 1744-5 Nova Scotia Council Minutes recording, either hid in the woods with their Mi’kmaq relatives, or were deported to Philadelphia, like the family of Joseph Mius d’Azy II.[127]

According to Père d’Entremont, Joseph Mius d’Azy II settled in Tusket Wedge/Wedgeport, Nova Scotia, circa 1767, with his second wife, Marie Vincent and his children from his first marriage to Marie-Josèphe Préjean.[128] Also settling here with Joseph II and his family were Pierre Hinard and a man named Pierre Guilbeau, who was the husband of Joseph II’s daughter, Théoiste Mius. Did the families of Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Pierre Hinard know each other prior to their time in Massachusetts, when they were in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania? Or did they know each other even prior to Deportation in the region of Grand Pré, River Canard and Pizziquid? Unfortunately, we may never know the answer to this question, because the information regarding exiled families during the Deportation is sparse. We do, however, know for certain that the Frenchman Pierre Hinard married the Métis Joseph Mius d’Azy II’s daughter, Anne-Rosalie Mius, during the Deportation, and that they re-settled in Wedgeport, Nova Scotia in 1767, after the Acadians were permitted to return to what was once called “Acadia.”

It is impossible to say with certainty which families and individuals were considered to be the “Mulattos” of the areas of Grand Pré, River Canard, and Pizziquid mentioned by Lieutenant-Governor Paul Mascarene in the January 04, 1744-5 Nova Scotia Council Minutes recording.[129] According to well-respected historian and genealogist, Placide Gaudet:

A l’époque de leur expulsion, les Acadiens emportèrent à la Louisiane les registres de l’église Saint-Charles de la Grand-Prée qui formaient cinq volumes commençant en 1687 et se terminant en 1755. Ils furent confiés au curé de la paroisse Saint-Gabriel d’Iberville qui ne paraît pas en avoir pris grand soin. Dans l’automne de 1893, une inondation du presbytère de Saint-Gabriel détruisit entièrement deux volumes de ces registres et une partie des autres. Deux ans après, Sa Grandeur feu Mgr O’Brien, archevêque d’Halifax, fit copier ce qui restait et au printemps de 1899 je fus chargé d’en faire un duplicata pour le bureau des archives du Dominion. Ces registres commencent en 1707 pour se terminer en 1748. Il y manque plusieurs baptêmes, mariages et sépultures.[130]

Translated, this reads:

At the time of their expulsion, the Acadians carried the register of the parish of Saint-Charles de la Grand-Prée to Louisiana which formed five volumes beginning in 1687 and ending in 1755. They were entrusted to the Priest of the parish of Saint-Gabriel D’Iberville who did not seem to have taken great care of it. In the fall of 1893, a flood of the Presbytery of Saint-Gabriel completely destroyed two volumes of these registers and a part of the others. Two years later, his Greatness the late Mgr. O’Brien, Archbishop of Halifax, copied what was left and in the spring of 1899 I was tasked with making a duplicate for the Dominion Archives office. These registers began in 1707 and ended in 1748. There are several baptisms, marriages and burials missing.

This excerpt demonstrates that a large number of the registers of the parish of Saint-Charles de la Grand-Prée from Grand-Pré, Acadia were, in fact, destroyed in the late 1800s by a flood. Only portions of the records from 1707 to 1748 survived the flood, including parts of the original five-volume set, comprising the years 1687 to 1755. These lost registers contained extremely valuable information in relation to positively identifying who the “Mulattos,” or Acadian-Métis, of the areas of Grand Pré, River Canard and Pizziquid were, in 1744. The destruction of a large portion of the 1687 to 1755 register of the parish of Saint-Charles de la Grand-Prée in 1893 can be considered an especially significant loss to the Acadian-Métis people.[131]

Despite the fact that many of the birth, marriage, and burial records that were once found in the register of the parish of Saint-Charles de la Grand-Prée were destroyed by a flood in 1893, including the years that Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont claims the family of the mixed-blooded Joseph Mius d’Azy II and his family were residing there, we can safely suggest that Joseph II and his family were some of those people Lieutenant-Governor Paul Mascarene mentioned, in the January 04, 1744-5 “Nova Scotia Council Minutes” recording, to have been Mulattos of the areas of Grand Pré, River Canard and Pizziquid, “allied to the greatest families.”[132] We can build this conclusion on the fact that Joseph Mius II was described as one of the Sang-Mêlé people, the fact that he is known to have been residing in the region of des Mines up until he and his family were deported to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1755, and the fact that the Mius d’Entremont family was one of the most prominent families in Acadia pre-Deportation, especially in the Cape Sable region.[133]

One final example of an outsider marrying a Métis along similar marriage patterns, and in the same geographical area during the early post-Deportation years, is the case of Philibert-Sylvestre Jacquard and Marie Elizabeth Mius. No marriage record has been found, to date, for Philibert-Sylvestre and Marie Elizabeth; however, Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont states that Philibert-Sylvestre was a soldier in Napoleon’s army and was a native of Metz, France.[134] Père d’Entremont further declares that Marie Elizabeth was the daughter of Paul Mius and Marie Leblanc, in addition to making the assertion that Philibert-Sylvestre and Marie Elizabeth married toward the end of 1820 or the beginning of 1821.[135] 

Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont’s claims that Philibert-Sylvestre Jacquard came from Metz, France and that he married a daughter of Paul Mius of Tusket Forks/Quinan, Nova Scotia are supported by the 1884–1885 logbook of Captain Hilarie Valentin Pothier of Wedgeport, Nova Scotia. Captain Pothier’s logbook was transcribed and published by Père d’Entremont with notes and commentary included in 1986, under the title, Historique de Saint-Michel de Wedgeport, Nouvelle-Écosse: Par Le Capitaine Hilaire-Valentin Pothier, 1884-1885: Notes et Commentaires par Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, Prêtre.[136] Confirmation of Père d’Entremont’s claims in the words of Captain Pothier can be found on page 54 of Père d’Entremont’s transcription. According to his civil death record, Philibert-Sylvestre Jacquard was indeed a native of France.[137] Philibert-Sylvestre died in March of 1868, in Tusket Wedge/Wedgeport, Nova Scotia at the age of approximately 67 years; therefore, he was born circa 1801. Although a  marriage record does not exist or has yet to be found for Phylibert-Sylvestre Jacquard and Marie Elizabeth Mius, we know with great certainty that she was the daughter of Paul Mius and Marie Leblanc, because of her civil death record.[138] 

Finally, connecting Philibert-Sylvestre Jacquard’s wife, Marie Elizabeth Mius to Paul Mius and Marie Leblanc is the enumeration of the family of Paul and Marie in Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s 1816 to 1824 Census (Registre des Familles dela Paroisse de Ste Anne & de Saint Pierre D’Argyle) of the parishioners of Acadian-Métis historical communities of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, in Argyle, Nova Scotia, and those of the parish of Saint-Pierre in West Pubnico, Nova Scotia. According to this census, Paul and Marie’s daughter, Marie (Elizabeth) Mius, was married to Philibert-Sylvestre Jacquard. Philibert-Sylvestre and Marie Elizabeth’s oldest child enumerated on this census was their son, (Jean) Benjamin Jacquard, who, according to this enumeration, was born on November 04, 1821. The authors assume that Benjamin’s reported date of birth is the reason behind Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont’s assertion that Philibert-Sylvestre and Marie Elizabeth were married toward the end of 1820 or the beginning of 1821.[139]

In a letter written on April 29, 1809 by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne to Monseigneur Plessis,  concerning five couples who required dispensations to marry, Marie Elizabeth Mius’ full brothers, Isaac Mius and Dominique Mius, were both said to have been Sang-Mêlés by Père Sigogne.[140] Therefore, it is appropriate to conclude that Marie Elizabeth was from the Sang-Mêlé caste, or the Acadian-Métis people, as well.

According to Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, Paul Mius, husband of Marie Leblanc, was the son of Jean-Baptiste Mius and Marie Josèphe Surette.[141] Père d’Entremont bases his conclusion largely on the fact that none of the sons of Joseph Mius d’Azy I—Charles-Amand Mius I, François Mius, and Joseph Mius d’Azy II—was recorded having a son named Paul, during the Deportation years.[142] A list of French inhabitants, taken during the Deportation in Essex County, Massachusetts on July 20, 1760, mentions a Paul Mius, aged four years, who was residing with his parents, John Meuse (Jean-Baptiste Mius) and Mary (Marie-Josèphe Surette) in Salem.[143] Therefore, we can estimate that Paul was born circa 1756.

An additional document worth mentioning was written during the Deportation years concerning the family of John Mewis (Jean-Baptiste Mius) and his wife (Marie-Josèphe Surette), on September 24, 1757 by the Selectmen of Methuen, Massachusetts. This document is a list of costs associated with keeping and supporting Jean-Baptiste and his family up to that point in the Deportation, and is addressed to His Excellency, Thomas Pownal Esquire. This document is very important, as it lists Jean-Baptiste and Marie-Josèphe’s children, one being a son named Paul (Paul Mius). Paul is the last child recorded for this family and it is noted in the document, in relation to the children, that the youngest was about one year and a half old. Therefore, it is reasonable to conclude that the youngest child in this family was Paul and that he was born circa 1756.[144]

A glimpse into the registers of the parish of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Port Royal, Acadia informs us that Jean-Baptiste Mius d’Azy and Marie-Josèphe Surette were married at Port Royal, Acadia on October 03, 1735. The parish record states that Jean-Baptiste’s parents were Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Marie Amirault, while Marie-Josèphe’s parents were recorded as Pierre Surette and Jeanne Pellerin. According to his marriage record, Jean-Baptiste was approximately 22 years old in 1735; therefore, he was born circa 1713. According to the register of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, Jean-Baptiste Mius d’Azy was buried July 10, 1806 and died at approximately 92 years old; therefore, he was born circa 1714. Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne performed the burial ceremony. Jean-Baptiste’s baptismal record does not exist or has yet to be discovered; however, based on Jean-Baptiste’s marriage and burial records, it is safe to conclude that he was born between 1713 and 1714, likely at Cape Sable; again, in the vicinity of the Acadian-Métis historical community.

The archival data indicates that the previously-discussed Isaac Mius and Dominique Mius, whom Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne noted to have been Sang-Mêlés in his April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis, concerning five couples who required dispensations to marry, were, in fact, the great-grandsons of the “part Indian” named Joseph Mius d’Azy I and his French wife, Marie Amirault.[145] Not only are we seeing endogamic marriage patterns emerging through the examination of these complex genealogies, pinpointing a rich sample of who the Acadian-Métis people or Sang-Mêlés caste are (as described in Sigogne’s letters and other historical documents), but we can, moreover, trace the movement of these peoples across events such as the Deportation, to significant clusters of Métis families we can now identify with particular historical settlements, such as Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau or Argyle.

As we shall explore in greater detail in the next section, what is particularly important in relation to Isaac Mius and Dominique Mius is that their last, and only, First Nations ancestor was their paternal great-grandfather, Joseph Mius d’Azy I’s mother, whose name has been unfortunately lost to history. Isaac and Dominique were, therefore, many generations removed from their last Indigenous ancestor, and yet, were still considered to have been from the Sang-Mêlés caste or the Acadian-Métis people, by both their neighbours and the Catholic Church, in 1809. This helps to show that that their Acadian-Métis identity had nothing to do with the amount of Indigenous blood or how many generations back we find their Indigenous ancestors. Their identity was, rather, unique to how they were perceived, and how they no doubt perceived themselves; as a people  distinct from the Purs, or “White” Acadians by virtue of their connection to Indigeneity, while being different also from the other Indigenous peoples; these kinship connections arose from the fact that they constituted their own people.  


13. Offspring of the Acadian-Métis

Another example of the distance in generations that did not affect the attribution of an Indigenous identity is the case of two Acadian-Métis men in Southwest Nova Scotia, Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Germain Doucet (1641). Again, their descendants were considered in 1809 to have been Métis (Sang-Mêlés), at least five generations removed from their last First Nations ancestor. Therefore, the Acadian-Métis of Southwest Nova Scotia were still considered to have been different from the Pur Acadian neighbours, despite having, even by the standard of this era, a very low quantum of “Indian blood,” and being many generations removed from their last known Indigenous ancestor. These cases help to demonstrate that the concept of blood quantum has no place in determining who can legitimately label themselves as Métis,” especially in Southwest Nova Scotia.

Having examined a few examples of outsiders to the Acadian population marrying into the denigrated Acadian-Métis families of Southwest Nova Scotia during the Deportation and in the early Post-Deportation years, it is worth looking at the subsequent marriages of the offspring produced by these mixed-marriages. Some of the children produced by the outsider/Métis marriages ended up marrying non-mixed blood spouses and reproducing with them. However, an in-depth examination of the registers of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau in Argyle, Nova Scotia shows that many children produced by the outsider/Métis blood group did, in fact, marry other children resulting from outsider/Métis marriages, thus adding even more Métis heritage  to the family lines.[146]

As discussed in the previous section, two families displaying this marriage pattern along such ancestry are those of Jean Marie Cottreau and Marie Hinard, and Antoine François Richard and Cécile Doucet. Many of Jean Marie and Marie’s children married children of Antoine and Cécile. For example, according to the registers of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau:

  1.  Jean-François Cottreau (born April 01, 1804 and baptized April 02, 1804) married Elizabeth Richard (born May 19, 1802 and baptized July 04, 1802) on October 27, 1828.[147] 
  2.  Charles Cottreau (born October 10, 1797 and baptized July 09, 1799) married Françoise Richard (born February 09, 1806 and baptized July 06, 1806) on April 11, 1825.
  3. Pierre Cottreau (born March 23, 1799 and baptized July 09, 1799) married Marguerite Richard (born January 30, 1804 and baptized April 09, 1804) on April 11, 1825.[148] [149]

As was often the case with many unions between Métis individuals in Southwest Nova Scotia, especially in the region of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau post-Deportation, many children resulting from the initial outsider/Métis unions during the same time period and in the same region also tended to marry people of their own ethnicity. In other words, we often see outsider/Métis offspring marrying other outsider/Métis offspring, as we also see many Acadian-Métis offspring from both Métis parents marrying other Acadian-Métis offspring from both Métis parents, offering a significant concentration of Acadian-Métis families connected through their open, yet tightly-woven kinship system. 

Was the same level of denigration experienced by the children produced by the outsider/Métis marriages as those produced by the  marriages with two Métis parents? Further research will have to be done in order to uncover the answer to this question; however, the data uncovered thus far appears to indicate that this is so. In joining a culture and specific geographical locations associated with the Sang-Mêlé people, it appears that children from outsider/Métis couples are growing the Acadian-Métis population noticed by Rameau de Saint-Père. 

In his Documents Inédits du Canada-Français: Documents sur l’Acadie: CII: Remarques sur les Registres de Belle-Isle-en-Mer”, Rameau de Saint-Père,” Rameau de Saint-Père provides important insight into his definition of the term “Métis” as applied to the mixed-blooded Acadian people of historic Acadia, within the present-day Maritime provinces of Canada. This definition implies more than someone having simply mixed First Nations and Acadian heritage: it reveals a way of life, geographical proximity, and a distinctiveness from both populations of strict European extraction, and the Mi'kmaq. The true intent behind Rameau de Saint-Père’s utilization of the term “Métis” in his various writings about the mixed-blooded Acadians becomes apparent in the following excerpt, also taken from Documents Inédits du Canada-Français: Documents sur l’Acadie: CII: Remarques sur les Registres de Belle-Isle-en-Mer, par Mr E. Rameau de Saint-Père:

4o On voit d’autre part que, s’il y eut des métis en Acadie, le groupement et la progression de leurs familles se maintint cantonné, généralement d’une manière distincte de la population purement européenne, et forma un courant particulier distinct des groupes exclusivement agricoles, mais distinct aussi des peuplades Micmaques.”[150]

This excerpt translates as:

4o On the other hand, if there were métis in Acadia, the grouping and the progression of their families remained quartered, generally in a distinct manner from the purely European population, and formed a particular way of life that was distinct from the groups that were exclusively agricultural, but also distinct from the Mi’kmaq people.

Based on his observations, it becomes apparent that François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père perceived the mixed-blooded Acadian people, whom he referred to as “Métis” throughout his many writings, as a people who formed distinct little communities, distinct in their ways of life from their First Nations relatives, and distinct from their Acadian relatives due to their customs, practices, and unique ethnicity. The fact that Rameau de Saint-Père perceived the mixed-blooded Acadians—the Métis of Acadia—to be a distinct people is especially significant when one factors in that “Documents Inédits du Canada-Français: Documents sur l’Acadie: CII: Remarques sur les Registres de Belle-Isle-en-Mer, par Mr E. Rameau de Saint-Père” was published in 1890. Therefore, his definition of the term “Métis,” as applied to the mixed-blooded Acadian people, can be considered historic usage to refer to distinct communities of mixed-blooded families who were ethnically related to, yet completely different from their Acadian relatives, and from their First Nations relatives, as a result of an original synthesis of the cultures and practices of these two other groups of people.

One additional point worth noting in relation to Rameau de Saint-Père’s work is its connection to that of Parisian linguist and ethnographer, Geneviève Massignon, who also studied the Mius descendants of Southwest Nova Scotia in person in the mid-1900s, and came to the following conclusions;[151]

Why do the Mieux or Mius d’Entremont only go by the name of D’Entremont since the Great Return to Acadia? Rameau de St-Père gives us something to go by, in his study on the half-breed families of old Acadia, observing the following: “The Mius d’Entremont left many illegitimate children in different parts of Acadia; they are never found to be using the name of D’Entremont, but only Mius.”[152]

Massignon continues:

“I was able to verify that this assertion is still valid in present-day Acadia; in the region of Yarmouth, Tusket, and Belleville, a few kilometers to the north-west of Pubnico, there are some Mius or Miousse families in whom the strain of Indian blood is visible.”[153]

Although this is not a prerequisite to Métis-Acadian identity, there was clearly something still ethnically different, per noticeable phenotypes associated with Indigeneity, about the Mius descendants of Southwest Nova Scotia when Geneviève Massignon conducted her own study of the Mius descendants of Southwest Nova Scotia in the mid-1900s. Such visible traits perhaps explain, in part, the historical segregation endured by Acadian-families families. It is also worth noting that the ancestors of the Mius descendants of the area have been continuously residing there as mixed-blood people since the birth of their Acadian-Métis progenitor, Joseph Mius d’Azy I, at Cape Sable, circa 1673/1674,  apart from the time during which they were deported to Philadelphia and New England, (depending on which of Joseph I’s children is in question).

Most fascinatingly, the deported Acadian-Métis Mius families maintained their connections with each other and with other French Métis and Neutral families, including the communication with Doucet descendants of Germain Doucet (1641), as outlined by his grandson, Joseph Doucet.[154] According to Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont, in response to a June 22, 1965 letter he received from Joseph Alphonse Deveau regarding the Métis descendants of Joseph I in Middle-West Pubnico, Nova Scotia, the following families of Southwest Nova Scotia of Acadian descent definitely descend from Joseph Mius d’Azy I and therefore, can be considered to be part of the Sang-Mêlé caste of the Acadian-Métis people:[155]

  1. Blanchard dit Merry
  2. Boutier dit Boucher
  3. Christiern dit Castin
  4. Clermont dit Clements
  5. Cottreau
  6. Corporon
  7. D’Auteuil dit Doty
  8. DeVeau
  9. DeVillers
  10. Dulin dit Dulong
  11. Frontain dit Frotten
  12. Harris dit Ayers
  13. Hatfield
  14. Jacquard
  15. Landry
  16. LeFevre dit Lefave
  17. Melanson
  18. Morris
  19. Moulaison
  20. O’Bird dit Hubbard
  21. Robichaud
  22. Vacon

In regard to where the mixed-blooded descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I settled after their return from Deportation, Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont notes the following:

C’est le comte de Yarmouth qui en a ete le point de depart: Quinan, Springhave, Belleville, la Pointe-a-Rocco, Hubbard’s Point, le Butte Amirault, la Pointe-du-Sault, la Pointe-de-Ben (appelee ‘mius Point’ par les auteurs), l’Ile Surette, Ile Morris, Wedgeport. Dans la premiere partie du 19me siecle, ils se sont installes a la Baie-Ste-Marie; et un peu plus tard a la Butte-de-Comeau, a Tusket et a Yarmouth.[156]

This translates to:

It is Yarmouth County that was the starting point: Quinan, Springhaven, Belleville, Rocco Point, Hubbard’s Point, Amirault’s Hill, Sluice Point, Ben’s Point (called “Mius Point” by the authors), Surette’s Island, Morris’ Island, Wedgeport. In the first part of the 19th century (1800s), they were living at Saint Mary’s Bay; and a little later at Comeau’s Hill, at Tusket and at Yarmouth.

The Métis descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I were dispersed throughout Southwest Nova Scotia following their return from deportation, after the Seven Year War. Interestingly, the archival data indicates that the descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I, the “part Indian who dwelt at Port Le Tore,” have always been perceived as Métis rather than “Acadians,” beginning with him, and especially among those descendants who returned to Southwest Nova Scotia after the Deportation. As stated before, the descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Germain Doucet (1641) who resettled in Southwest Nova Scotia, despite the distance of their Indian ancestors in generations, were discriminated against and segregated into the Sang-Mêlé caste upon their return, post-Deportation. Their descendants, as well as the descendants of their relatives, were described as Métis, and even Bois-Brûlés, a term used across North America to identify this unique French-Indigenous population, and famously adopted by Pierre Falcon in his song, “La chanson de la Grenouillère,” celebrating the victory of the Western Métis against les Anglais.[157]


14. The Métis of Port La Tour

Several Métis families originated in the Port La Tour area. To understand why the region of Port La Tour in Cape Sable was and is so important to the history of Acadia, we must first gain an understanding of where Port La Tour was located, and provide some of its history.

When we review the following documents concerning Port La Tour and Fort-Saint Louis in Cape Sable, (Acadia), in conjunction with other documentation concerning the Cape Sable region discussed earlier, we can see the region of Cape Sable was a region with a high frequency of métissage between the First Nations people and Acadian settlers from the earliest period of Acadian history.

Evidence also demonstrates that not all of their children were either brought back to France, or simply assimilated into  the nations of their Indigenous indigenous mothers. A people in-between was rather given roots in the region of Cape Sable, grounding the family lines that we reviewed in earlier sections. According to Henri Léander d’Entremont, uncle of Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, in his 1938 book entitled, The Forts of Cape Sable of the Seventeenth Century:

Port La Tour was at first called Port Lomeron as mentioned in the earlier note under page 62 of this volume of our author’s work. It was occupied by Charles de La Tour at least as early as 1627, and there he was living, as our author states (a) during the war of La Rochelle in 1628. It was of course located primarily as a centre for trade with the Indians of both the east and west coasts. It was no doubt placed here instead of Barrington Bay, because the harbor was very much better (a). At the same time it was easily accessible, without an outside passage, by short portages from Barrington Bay and Cape Negro Harbour. La Tour left the place in 1635 and went to occupy his new and more famous fort at the mouth of the River Saint John. He probably left Fort Saint Louis in charge of his father, who no doubt ended his days there, for he does not again appear in Acadian history. The place is still mentioned in a document of 1643 as Vieux Logis (old residence)[158]

Based on this excerpt, we know that Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour occupied Fort Saint-Louis at Port La Tour prior to 1635; Fort Lomeron, also known as Fort La Tour, was where La Tour wrote his 1627 letter to the King of France, according to d’Entremont.[159] [160] This area is significant to our topic when we consider the fact that the mixed-blood son of Loys Lasnier (Louis Lasnier) and une femme Canadienne was said to have been born circa 1620 at Port de La Tour in Acadia, according to his December 27, 1632 baptismal record from Libourne, France.[161] Archival records from this source, and from Loizeau De Grandmaison’s 1877 work, entitled “Chronique de l’Abbaye de Beaumont-Lez-Tours: Publiée Pour La Première Fois, D’Après Un Manuscrit Des Archives D’Indre-Et-Loire,” confirm that Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour had his own mixed-blood children (at least three daughters) during his time spent at Fort Saint Louis at Port La Tour.[162]  These documents do not only suggest the presence of Métis union early on in the history of the historic community of Cape Sable, but also reveal the presence of Métis children.

The fact that First Nations women are sometimes referred to as “Canadiennes,” or some variant of this term, is especially important when applied to the previously-discussed March 09, 1767 deposition given by Pierre Doucet, Germain Doucet (1641)’s great-great-grandson, in the “Déclarations de Belle-Île-en-Mer,” in which Pierre states that Germain had venu du Canada” (come from Canada), not France, where Pierre’s other ancestors were said to have originated. The fact that this deposition was recorded in France is very significant, as the records concerning Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour and his men that refer to someone as being ”from Canada,” a Canadienne,” or the like, were also written in France.[163]

Interestingly, the birth of André Lasnier is mentioned in the 1644 Mémoire of Sieur Charles de Menou d’Aulnay. The highly relevant excerpt taken from Sieur d’Aulnay’s 1644 Mémoire is as follows:

        

Ledit de la Tour depuis le decedez dud Sr. de Biancourt arivé en l’‘An 1624. demeura dans le Païs  & dans les biens dud Sr. de Biancourt courant par les bois avec 18 ou 20 homes se meslant avec les sauvages & vivant une vie libertine, & infame comme bestes bruttes sans aucun exercise de religion n’ayant pas mémes le soing de faire baptiser les enfants procréez d’eulx & de ces pauvres miserables femmes, au contraire les abandonnait a leurs Meres comme encores a present Ilz font durant lequel temps les Anglois usurpent toute l’estendüe de la nouvelle France, & sur luy lesdictes Côtes d’Acadie.”[164]

This translates to :

The said de la Tour since the death of Sr. de Biancourt arrived in the year 1624, remained in the land & in the property of said Sr. de Biancourt, ran the wood with 18 or 20 men mixed with the savages & lived a libertine life, & infamous as crude beasts without exercise of religion similarly not having the care to baptize the children procreated by them & these poor miserable women, on the contrary, abandoned them to their mothers as at present they do during which time the English usurp the whole extent of New France, & on said Coasts of Acadia.”

     

This excerpt is often disregarded by some professional researchers and historians and deemed to be simply slander directed toward Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour by Sieur Charles de Menou d’Aulnay. This passage is, however, key, as it reveals a condition similar to that of the Coureurs des bois elsewhere in New France, which often precedes the emergence of many Métis communities across North America, highlighting a similar lifestyle characterised by proximity with the Indigenous peoples, adopting habits considered too liberated and outside the confines of their religion, from the standpoint of colonial authorities. This is unfortunate, as there exists other documentation to support Sieur d’Aulnay’s claims. One such document is Richard Guthry’s 1629 writing entitled, “A Relation of the Voyage and plantation of the Scotts Colony in New Scotland under the conduct of Sr Wm Alexr Younger 1629.” This document is essentially a journal kept by Scotsman Richard Guthry during his time spent in Nova Scotia—otherwise known as New Scotland—during the Scottish occupation of Acadia in the 1620s, led by Sir William Alexander, the Younger. The date of the document is August 13, 1629.[165] 

     

According to Griffiths et al,  the original manuscript of “A Relation of the Voyage and plantation of the Scotts Colony in New Scotland under the conduct of Sr Wm Alexr Younger 1629” was discovered at the Scottish Records Office in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1988, loosely placed in the back of a bound volume entitled, Nova Scotia Baronets.[166] An important excerpt from this document can be found in “New Evidence on New Scotland, 1629” and reads as follows:

Seeking a sure place to fortify our selves, we saw the ruins of tuo forts, the one built by Monsieur PoutrinCourt, who was driven out by Sr Samuel Argall ane English Captane,55 another built by Monsieur Latour his sonne, driven out there by his awn country men,56 who live in the Country a salvage kinde of life travelling trucking and marying with the Salvages, and disliking both we Sailed higher, and found a place fortified by nature, by sea and by land, rising in ascent one the maine ryver, having on the east of it running a small river portable for shipps of 300 tunns a league up…”[167]

   

This is evidence by a Scotsman who was present in Acadia/New Scotland/Nova Scotia as part of Sir William Alexander, the Younger’s crew in the 1629s to support Sieur Charles de Menou d’Aulnay’s 1644 claim that  Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour and his 18 ou 20 homes” (18 or 20 men) had se meslant avec les sauvages & vivant une vie libertine , & infame comme bestes bruttes sans aucun exercise de religion n’ayant pas mémes le soing de faire baptiser les enfants procréez d’eulx” (translated as: “mixed with the savages & lived a libertine life, & infamous as crude beasts without exercise of religion similarly not having the care to baptize the children procreated by them & these poor miserable women”) during the Scottish occupation of the 1620s.

     

Further supporting these allegations is a letter written to the King of France by Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour himself on July 25, 1627. This letter details the lifestyle that Sieur de La Tour and his men had to adopt during the Scottish occupation. A facsimile of the original letter can be found found in Abbé Azarie Couillard-Després’ 1930 book entitled, Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour, gouverneur, lieutenant-général en Acadie, et son temps : 1593-1666. The relevant part of this letter is as follows:

           Sire,

Depuis l’âge de quatorze ans (1) que le sieur de La Tour mon Père mena en ce pays de vostre nouvelle France ou j’ay séjourné jusques à pnt (présent) que j’ai atteint l’âge de trente-quatre ans et que j’ai été constraint par le mauvais traitement que nous avons reçeu des Anglais de vivre ainsy que les peuples du pays et vêstus comme eux-chasser et forcer les bestes et pescher les poisons pour vivre attendans quelques secours de France.[168]

Translated, this reads:

            Sire,

Since my father the Sieur de La Tour brought me to this land of your New France at the age of fourteen years where I have stayed to the pnt (present) that I have reached the age of thirty-four years and that I was constrained by the ill-treatment we have received by the English to live as the people of the land and dress like them-hunt and track animals and fish the fish to survive awaiting some help from France.

     

So, in the words of Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour himself, he and his “18 ou 20 homes” were forced to vivre ainsy que les peuples du pays et vêstus comme eux-chasser et forcer les bestes et pescher les poisons pour vivre attendans quelques secours de France” (live as the people of the land and dress like them-hunt and track animals and fish the fish to survive, awaiting some help from France) during the occupation of Acadia/Nova Scotia. It is important to note that les peuples du pays is the term Sieur de La Tour used to refer to the “Sauvages”, or First Nations people.[169] This means that Sieur de La Tour and his men did, in fact, live among the First Nations peoples of Acadia, especially in Cape Sable, during the Scottish occupation of the 1620s, which would have given them ample opportunity to intermarry with the First Nations women and produce mixed-blooded children. Based on these excerpts, it is safe to conclude that André Lasnier’s father, Loys (Louis) Lasnier was one of Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour’s “18 ou 20 homes.”

     

Also supporting Sieur Charles de Menou d’Aulnay’s 1644 claims, and the 1629 claims of Richard Guthry, is that fact that Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour produced mixed-blooded children of his own. It is well-documented in the literature that Sieur de La Tour’s first mixed-blooded child was a daughter named Jeanne Saint-Étienne de La Tour and that she was married to a Basque named Martin D’'Aprendestiguy, Sieur de Martignon.[170] Jeanne is recorded on the 1686 census of Acadia as being 60 years old; therefore, born circa 1626, during the Scottish occupation of Acadia, and residing at the Rivière Saint-Jean with Sieur de Martignon and their 24 year old daughter, Marianne. According to Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, on pages 403 to 412 of “Volume 2” of his 1981 book entitled, Histoire du Cap-Sable De l’'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763), Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour had fathered at least two more mixed-blooded children, who were daughters, and possibly had mixed-blooded sons as well. Père d’Entremont identifies the first additional daughter as Antoinette de Saint-Étienne de La Tour and the second simply as La Cadette (The Younger) Saint-Étienne de La Tour.

     

Although La Cadette Saint-Étienne de La Tour is not mentioned by name in any documentation, both she and Antoinette de Saint-Étienne de La Tour are mentioned in a manuscript written by Abbé de Beaumont-Lez-Tours.[171] According to this manuscript, Antoinette de Saint-Étienne de La Tour and La Cadette were brought to France from Acadia/Canada and were sent to live in different locations. La Cadette was first summoned from the Convent of Val de Grâce in Paris, France by the Queen of France to become an opera performer, but she was unable to fulfill this request, as she was already promised to become a nun and so Antoinette took her place.

Loizeau De Grandmaison notes of La Cadette:

 qu’elle fust menée dans le couvent de Val-de-Grace, où elle désiroit qu’elle fust, ayant ouy faire récit de sa voix ; c’estoit une fille qui, depuis huit ans estoit en ceste maison, par une occasion. M. de Laulnay-Razilly, qui avoit une seur eu ceste abbaye, qui se nommoit la Mère Louyse de Razilly, laquelle décéda le 22e novembre 1645, amena une petite sauvage, venue depuis peu en France de Canada, pour la mettre en quelque religion ; ledit sieur s’en estant chargé, Madame la luy demanda ; il luy dist qu’il l'a voit promise aux Ursulines de ceste ville (elle y décéda peu d’années après) ; mais que si elle avoit tant de charité, elle la pouvoit mieux employer envers une de ses seurs, qui estait un peu plus àgée, laquelle estoit à la Rochelle, chez une dame huguenote, nommée de Sainct-Hilaire.[172]

This translates to:

that she was led to the convent of Val-de-Grace, where she desired her to be, having had a chance to recite her voice ; she was a girl who had been in this house for eight years, by an opportunity. M. de Laulnay-Razilly, who had a sister who had this abbey, whose name was Mother Louyse de Razilly, who died on November 22nd, 1645, brought a little savage, recently arrived in France from Canada, to put it in some religion; the said gentleman took charge of it, Madame asked him; He told him that he had seen her promised to the Ursulines of that city (she died there a few years later); but if she had so much charity, she could use it better towards one of her sisters, who was a little older, who was at La Rochelle, with a Huguenot lady, named de Saint-Hilaire…”

Loizeau De Grandmaison continues:

 …et fut amenée en ceste maison au mois de juin, un sahmedy, 13e de juin 1636, agée de neuf  à  dix ans. Elle estoit née en Canada, fille d’'un gentilhomme français de nation, nourry dès l’'âge de cinq ans audit pays, lequel se nomme Eléazar, seigneur de la Tour, et d’'une sauvage du pays d’'Acadie, de la nouvelle France, autrement Canada. C’este petite fille avoit esté baptisée audit pays par les Pères Capucins, qui y estoient allés en mission, et fut nommée Anthoinette, et son surnom est de St-Etienne.[173]

The translation of this reads :

…and was brought to this house in the month of June, a Saturday, 13th of June 1636, aged nine to ten years. She was born in Canada, the daughter of a gentleman of the French Nation, raised from the age of five years in said land, who is named Eléazar, Seigneur of La Tour, and of a savage of the land of Acadia, in the New France, also called Canada. This little girl was baptized in the said land by the Capuchin Fathers, who went there on a mission, and was named Anthoinette and her surname is de St-Etienne.

Based on these excerpts from Charles Loizeau De Grandmaison’s 1877 work, which is, in essence, a published transcription of Abbé de Beaumont-Lez-Tours’ much older manuscript, we note that Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour had a daughter named Antoinette de Saint-Étienne de La Tour, and another daughter whose name has been lost to history. These daughters were produced through a union between Sieur de La Tour and a Canadienne or “Sauvage” woman in Acadia. Antoinette was born circa 1626 or 1627 in Acadia during the Scottish occupation and the unknown daughter, also known as La Cadette (The Younger) Saint-Étienne de La Tour was a little bit younger than her sister. Both daughters were sent back to France. La Cadette became an Ursuline nun, while Antoinette became an opera singer.    

According to Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, La Cadette Saint-Étienne de La Tour, Antoinette de Saint-Étienne de La Tour, and Jeanne Saint-Étienne de La Tour were born at  Cape Sable and brought back to France in 1632 at the same time as their fellow Cape Sable mixed-blood, André Lasnier, was brought to France.[174] However, Jeanne later returned to Acadia and started a family with Martin D’'Aprendestiguy, Sieur de Martignon, if she actually left Acadia before her marriage. What we can take from the excerpts relating to the mixed-blood children born to Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour, and to his “18 ou 20 homes,” with the Sauvagesses during the Scottish occupation of Acadia in the 1620s, is that some of them were brought to France and raised there, others were absorbed into First Nations tribes of their mothers, and others eventually made their way into the Acadian communities that later developed in Acadia. There is, therefore, no definitive answer to what happened to all the children produced by this initial wave of inter-marriage between Frenchmen and First Nations women, especially in the region of Cape Sable.

What we know for certain is that Cape Sable is noted as a location where early practices of métissage occured, with European men adopting a lifestyle similar to Indigenous peoples’, and fathering children; some of whom would go back to France, some of whom would be absorbed by the nation of their mothers, and some of whom would remain in Acadia. What is further acknowledged by evidence is that the location of Cape Sable will remain, as time goes on, a place where practices of métissage were noticed as prevalent by various historical actors, to the point that distinctive and collective descriptions were made about the Métis of that region, setting them apart from European-descent Acadians and the “Indians,” and identifying them  by ethnonyms such as “Bois-Brûlés” and “Métis.”    

One more detail worth noting in relation to the work of Henri Léander d’Entremont is that it mentions the Vieux Logis (old residence), which is a reference to Fort Saint-Louis.[175] The inclusion of the Vieux Logis is particularly interesting when combined with the previously-discussed donation of land at the Passage of Cape Sable on the coast of Port La Tour given by Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour’s son, Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour fils (Junior) to Josephe mieuse, genre a Touranjot (Josephe mieuse, son-in-law of Touranjot) —that is, Joseph Mius d’Azy I— and his heirs on April 26, 1713.[176] The importance of this lies in the fact that the land donated to Joseph I was situated “au lieu Du chateaux Passage Du cap De sable; Du coté Du Port de LaTour et son etablissement” (at the Chateaux at the Passage of Cape Sable; on the site of Port La Tour and his establishment).[177] Père d’Entremont notes that this “chateaux” was at Fort Saint-Louis.[178]

   

The fact that Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour fils donated this land to Joseph Mius d’Azy I and his heirs is of note, because of Joseph I’s ancestry. Joseph I was of mixed First Nations and French ancestry and was referred to by Captain Cyprian Southack as “Jo. Muse part Indian who dwelt at Port Le Tore.”[179] When all of these documents concerning Port La Tour and Fort-Saint Louis in Cape Sable (Acadia) are used in concert, along with other documentation concerning the Cape Sable region discussed in this report, it confirms that the region of Cape Sable was a place with a high frequency of métissage between the First Nations people and Acadian settlers.

 

It is also important to note that a second wave of documented intermarriages between François (Frenchmen) and Sauvagesses occurred in the region of Cape Sable toward the end of the 17th century. Based on the information recorded on the various censuses taken during this time period, it was at this point where we start to see more people of First Nations descent (so-called full-blooded, and mixed-blooded), mingling with the Acadian population. One example of such an intermarriage occurring in Acadia toward the end of the 17th century between a François and an Indigenous woman is the union of Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his unknown First Nations wife.[180] An additional well-known Métis marriage which occurred toward the end of the 17th century is that of a fisherman from Saint-Malo, France named Jean Roy dit Laliberté and his First Nations wife, Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois. Not much is known about Jean and Marie’s early years due to the loss or destruction of records of significant events; possibly this information was unrecorded, due to the absence of a religious authority in the area when a significant event occurred, such as a marriage. We are aware, however, of a deposition made against a pirate from Boston named Gemmes Tailer (James Taylor) by Jean Roy dit Laliberté, on July 30, 1684, alleging that James had come to Acadia to steal the fishing boats of Jean and other settlers in the area.[181] According to the deposition, Jean was working in an area of Acadia called Chepatagan for Sieur Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour, Jacques Mius d’Entremont, and others at the time. This document also advises us that Jean had been in Acadia as early as September of 1683.

     

In relation to the region of Cape Sable, we know from the 1686 census of Acadia that Jean Roy dit Laliberté was residing in the region of Cape Sable, as “La Liberte Le Neigre” and was recorded as residing in the region unmarried, and without children. The addition of “Le Neigre” to Jean’s name on this census suggests that he was residing at Cap Nègre (Cape Negro) in Cape Sable, rather than referring to Jean’s race. Jean Roy dit Laliberté had married his wife, Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois, sometime between 1686 and 1693, as we find him, and his wife, Christine, residing with four children at Cape Sable. Jean was recorded as being 40 years old and was therefore, born circa 1653. Christine was stated to have been 35 years old on this census and, therefore, was born circa 1658.

Jean Roy dit Laliberté and his wife had moved to Port Royal, Acadia by 1698, as we find Jean Roy and Marie, sa femme (his wife), residing there with their four children (Anne, Marie, Jean, and François). Jean and Marie-Christine’s oldest child was recorded as their 13 year old daughter, Anne. Anne was born circa 1685/1686; therefore, we know that Jean and Marie-Christine were likely married around 1686, especially given the fact that Jean was recorded without a wife or children on the 1686 census of Acadia. Jean was stated on this census to have been born circa 1648 (50 years old) and Marie-Christine was stated to have been born circa 1665 (33 years old).[182]

   

In order to shed light on this migration between Cape Sable and Port Royal, it is important to briefly explore the documentation pertaining to the marriage of Jean Roy dit Laliberté and Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois’ daughter, and then Anne Roy dit Laliberté to a Frenchman, Jean Clemençeau dit Beaulieu. Anne and Jean Clemençeau dit Beaulieu, two of the first author’s ancestors, were originally married in Boston; however, their marriage was re-validated at Port Royal, Acadia on March 03, 1706. Jean Clemençeau dit Beaulieu is stated to have been a native of Bordeaux, France and the son of Martin Clemençeau and Anne Duranteau. The importance of this marriage record lies in who Anne’s parents are recorded to have been; Jean Roy, Natif de St. Malo (native of Saint-Malo, France) and Marie, Sauvagesse de l’Acadie (“Marie, savage woman, or First Nations woman, of Acadia).

     

According to Père Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, the reason that Jean Clemençeau dit Beaulieu and Anne Roy dit Laliberté were married in Boston in 1705 was that they were taken prisoner by Colonel Benjamin Church during the summer of 1704, when he came to Acadia and took prisoners from the coast of Maine, Minas, and Port Royal.[183] Père d’Entremont further asserts that, although another expedition to Acadia made in 1705 took prisoners from La Hève and Port-Razoir in the Cape Sable region, the family of Jean Roy dit Laliberté and Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois had moved to Port Royal a few years prior, and therefore, Anne and Jean Clemençeau dit Beaulieu[184] were likely taken to Boston during Colonel Church’s excursion in the summer of 1704.[185]

     

This illustrates that men of importance, or their children, often married Métis or sometimes First Nations women in Acadia, as in the case of the previously-discussed Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his two First Nations wives. Philippe II was the son of Philippe Mius d’Entremont I, who was the first Baron of Pubnico.[186] Clemençeau dit Beaulieu’s wife, Anne Roy dit Laliberté, was buried at Port Royal, Acadia at approximately 35 years old on October 16, 1717. Anne, according to this record, was born circa 1682. Therefore, the fact that Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois is stated to have been a Sauvagesse, de l’Acadie in the marriage record of her daughter, Anne Roy dit Laliberté, proves that the descendants of Jean Roy dit Laliberté and Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois are Métis.[187] An additional document in relation to Jean Roy dit Laliberté and Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois, is the record of the November 24, 1710 marriage of Jean and Marie-Christine’s daughter, Marie Roy to Joseph Comeau, son of Pierre Comeau L’'Aine dit L’'estourgeon and Jeanne Bourg. The marriage took place at Port Royal, Acadia and, according to the 1698 census of Acadia, Marie was born circa 1687. Marie and Joseph’s marriage record is important because on it, Marie-Christine is referred to as “Marie Aubois/Dubois.” This is proof of Marie-Christine’s surname. A variant of Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois’ surname can be found in the record of the January 18, 1717 marriage of Jean dit Laliberté and Marie-Christine’s son, Jean Roy dit Laliberté to Marie Bergeron, daughter of Barthelemé Bergeron and Geneviève Sero. Marie-Christine is referred to as “Marie Dubois” in this record.

     

As evidence shows, we see documented waves of intermarriage occurring in the Cape Sable region of Acadia. Intermarriages initially occurred between Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour and his Indigenous wife, and with his “18 ou 20 homes” with First Nations women.[188] A second wave of documented intermarriage in the Cape Sable region can be seen throughout the late-1600s, such as that of Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his first wife, who was recorded as an “unknown First Nations woman. According to Père Joseph Clarence d’Entremont, this unknown First Nations woman was from “the eastern shore of what is now known as Barrington Bay.”[189] This union largely contributed to the mixed-blooded roots of the Sang-Mêlés of Southwest Nova Scotia. A second mixed-blooded family born of this second wave of métissage (intermarriage) in the Cape Sable region is that of Jean Roy dit Laliberté and his First Nations wife, Marie-Christine Aubois/Dubois. However, this family had relocated to Port Royal, Acadia by the time the 1698 census of Acadia was enumerated and had less impact on the family trees of those who eventually became known as the Sang-Mêlés of Southwest Nova Scotia.

To summarize, the region of Cape Sable, Acadia/Southwest Nova Scotia, especially at Fort Saint-Louis and Port La Tour, has been an area which many Sang-Mêlés have called home, from the early days of what was once known as Acadia to the present day. Moreover, the donation of land at the Passage of Cape Sable on the coast of Port La Tour given by Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour’s son, Charles de Saint-Étienne de La Tour fils (Junior) to Josephe mieuse (Joseph Mius D’Azy) and his heirs in April 1713  indicates precisely the ancestral lands of the Mius family—the same geographic area in which the initial wave of métissage took place. 

Location of the first wave of métissage at Port La Tour[190]


15. Issues of Blood Quantum and the Powley Case    

Given the genealogical data provided here, it could be argued that the Acadian-Métis people of Southwest Acadia had far too much European or other non-Indigenous ancestry to make them a legitimate Indigenous people; too watered down in terms of percentage of their Indian blood, as some would suggest. We must remember, however, that blood quantum does not factor into this appreciation of Métis identity, both from a cultural and juridical standpoint. From a cultural standpoint, blood quantum was completely rejected by historic Métis leader Louis Riel as an invalid argument to evaluate Métis identity. From a juridical perspective, the question of blood quantum was also denied by the Supreme Court of Canada in the Powley decision in 2003, at paragraph 32:

32.  Second, the claimant must present evidence of an ancestral connection to a historic Métis community.  This objective requirement ensures that beneficiaries of s. 35  rights have a real link to the historic community whose practices ground the right being claimed.  We would not require a minimum “blood quantum”, but we would require some proof that the claimant’s ancestors belonged to the historic Métis community by birth, adoption, or other means.  Like the trial judge, we would abstain from further defining this requirement in the absence of more extensive argument by the parties in a case where this issue is determinative.  In this case, the Powleys’ Métis ancestry is not disputed.[191]

To better understand the context in which this information is provided, let us present briefly the facts associated with this important decision of the Supreme Court of Canada. The Powley test arose from the Supreme Court case against Steve Powley and Roddy Charles Powley, who killed a bull moose close to Sault Sainte-Marie, Ontario without a license on October 22, 1993. The moose was tagged with a Métis card and a note that read, harvesting my meat for winter.” The pair were subsequently charged with hunting moose without a license and unlawful possession of moose. It was ruled in 1998 that the Powleys had a Métis right to hunt, protected under Section 35 of the Canadian Constitution. The charges against the Powleys were dismissed; however, the Crown chose to appeal the decision. The case was repeatedly confirmed and appealed at each stage of the legal system until it made its way to the Supreme Court of Canada. The battle ended on September 19, 2003, when the Supreme Court confirmed that the Powleys had a Métis right to hunt, as members of the Sault Sainte-Marie Métis community, under Section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982. This marked a step forward for the Métis people, and set the gold standard for future Métis rights cases, but not, it should be noted, for identity.

Would Steve Powley and Roddy Charles Powley have still been considered “legitimate” Métis if they had lost their case, with their Indigenous roots originating outside of the Red River Settlement?

While considering this question, it is important to remember that the Crown attempted multiple arguments to challenge the Métis identity of the Powleys, including that the Powley family had no connection to the Red River Métis communities. In their factum to appeal the Appeal Court of Ontario, the Crown attempted once again to argue that the historical community ceased to exist due to its assimilation to either European peoples or Indian bands. The Crown attempted to ridicule the Métis Nation of Ontario as an ad hoc organization with unacceptable identity criterion. In fact, the Powley family was forced to admit on the stand that they only began using the term “Métis” in the 1990s. Finally, the Crown played on the fact that Métis of that region had married with non-Indigenous people for too long, and evoked the blood quantum logic in an attempt to discredit the Powleys. The Crown, in their Appeal Factum to the Ontario Court of Appeal, stated:

The position of the Crown is that the respondents are not members of a community in continuity with the historic Métis community for several reasons. First, the Powleys’ Métis ancestor, Eustache Lesage, left Sault Ste. Marie with many other Métis in the 1850’s and joined the Batchewana Band, with the result that his descendants’ membership in the band community was thereafter controlled by Indian Act rules. In 1918, Steve Powley’s grandmother Eva Lesage, lost her band membership by "marrying out," with the result that her descendants are not band members. Since the respondents (who, as a result of further intermarriage are of 1/64 and 1/128 native ancestry respectively) are not members of the Batchewana band, they cannot benefit from the band’s community rights.”[192]

Per the argument stated by the Crown, Steve Powley and Roddy Charles Powley’s aboriginal ancestries are 1/64 and 1/128, which, as stated, would be the equivalent to one full-blooded First Nations great-, great-, great-, great-grandparent, and one full-blooded First Nations great-, great-, great-, great-, great-grandparent. It is noted in the same excerpt that the Powleys’ Métis ancestor, Eustache Lesage, left Sault Ste. Marie with many other Métis in the 1850s.[193] In consequence, the Crown attempted to argue, Sault-Ste-Marie would not have constituted a “continuous Métis community,” which is one of the requirements in line with previous Aboriginal jurisprudence that became part of the Powley Test emerging from the Powley decision.[194] As we now know, all of these arguments made by the Crown against the Powleys were rejected by the Supreme Court of Canada.

     

On a comparative basis, a brief discussion about the Powley requirements is useful to help us to illustrate differences and similarities between the Métis of Sault-Ste-Marie (i.e. the Lesage line) and the Acadian-Métis people of Southwest Nova Scotia (i.e the Mius line).

The Mius have indeed resided in the Cape Sable, Acadia region since the birth of their mixed-blooded progenitor, Joseph Mius d’Azy I, circa 1673, until the present day (aside from the brief period that they were living in exile during the Deportation). Joseph I’s children resided in the Cape Sable area once they were permitted to return to their homeland. Hence, contrary to the Métis line claimed by the Powley family (the Lesage line), in which family members resided in Old Michigan, Detroit and then present-day Ontario, one of the differences between the Lesage line and the Acadian-Métis Mius descendants is that the latter family have been residing in the Cape Sable region as Sang-Mêlés and Métis almost continuously for 345 years. In doing so, the Mius descendants respond not only to the criterion of geographical proximity as the basis of what constitutes, arguably, an Acadian-Métis historical regional community, but it moreover reveals, along with the evidence examined in this report, open yet recognizable endogamic patterns of kinship and marriage, this across many generations of the Acadian-Métis lines; hence, a significant phenomenon when it comes to assessing the contours of a Indigenous people--a circumstance we do not find in the Powley case.

Similarly to Steve Powley and Roddy Charles Powley, the Acadian-Métis families of Southwest Nova Scotia also  bear distant aboriginal ancestry; that is, if we consider the arguments formulated by the Crown in its attempt to refute the aboriginality of  the Powleys. As stated above, the Acadian-Métis families often married amongst themselves; however, as a result of the severe discrimination and prejudice inflicted upon them by their Pur Acadian neighbours because of their Indigeneity (as noted by Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne in his various letters and sermons), there is a significant difference between the history of the Mius family and that  of Steven Powley and Roddy Charles Powley, as we know from Court documents:

The ancestors of the Powleys married and had children with non-aboriginal persons of German/English, English and Irish descent. In particular, Steven Powley’s grandmother (through whom his aboriginal ancestry is traced) married a man of Irish descent by the name of Ancel Micks in 1918, and, as a result, was excluded from the Batchewana band. His mother, Alberta Micks, married David Powley, who was also not of aboriginal origin. Mr. Steven Powley married Ms. Brenda Konawalchuk, who also is not of aboriginal ancestry. Their son, the respondent Roddy Powley, is of 1/128 aboriginal ancestry. This means that one of his grandparents seven generations back was aboriginal.[195]

This raises the question of how someone like Roddy Charles Powley, seven generations removed from his last full-blooded Indigenous ancestor, and having no additional Indigenous lineages (i.e. no endogamic unions), could still be considered a legitimate s. 35 rights-bearing Métis person by the Supreme Court of Canada. To answer this question, we must remember the en-criteria Powley test included three criteria when it comes to the identification of s. 35 right-bearing Métis:

  1.  Self-identification;
  2.  Ancestral connection;
  3.  Community acceptance.  

In line with jurisprudence about Aboriginal law (most significantly, the Van der Peet[196] decision), a Powley demonstration requires evidence of a historical Métis community (either a settlement or regional type[197]) that existed post-contact due to the particularity of the Métis peoples and cultures, yet pre-effective control (before the Crown asserted effective control of the territory in question). Crucial to the Powley demonstration was the evidence presented about the historical Métis community of Sault-Sainte-Marie. It should be noted that that community was not purely ethnically Métis, and that its population also included Canadians and “Indians” as well (as most Métis communities do, across Canada). Pinpointing the requirement to demonstrate the existence of a Métis “community,” the Court in Powley stipulates the following criterion, at paragraph 12: that they,

a. Formed a 'distinctive' collective social identity;

b. Lived together in the same geographic area; and,

c. Shared a common way of life.[198]

It should also be remembered that, in the Powley case, the Crown presented evidence that the population ratio became very sparse for the Métis population of Sault-Ste-Marie, which was reputed completely dispersed by 1900, most Métis having  joined “Indian” bands and treaty annuities or the Euro-Canadian communities of the vicinities (which was the case with Powley’s descendants). These arguments suggesting the vanishing of the Métis community in Sault-Ste-Marie were all rejected by the Supreme Court of Canada, at paragraph 24:

24   Aboriginal rights are communal rights: They must be grounded in the existence of a historic and present community, and they may only be exercised by virtue of an individual’s ancestrally based membership in the present community. The trial judge found that a Métis community has persisted in and around Sault Ste. Marie despite its decrease in visibility after the signing of the Robinson-Huron Treaty in 1850.  While we take note of the trial judge’s determination that the Sault Ste. Marie Métis community was to a large extent an “invisible entity” ([1999] 1 C.N.L.R. 153, at para. 80) from the mid-19th century to the 1970s, we do not take this to mean that the community ceased to exist or disappeared entirely. (our emphasis)

Along with the evidence retained by the Court, it should be noted that the Métis peoples of Sault-Ste-Marie  signed a petition as “Half-breeds” in 1850 where the Lesage family appears as signatory (thus establishing their connection with the territory of the community in question). At the time, however, authorities for the Robinson Treaty refused to deal with the “Half-breeds” of Sault-Ste-Marie, asking the Half-breeds to chose to be either “Indians” or “White.” On a comparative basis, the Mius family were signatories of the 1726 Friendship Treaty, which Mathieu Mius (from the family of Francois Mius) signed as one of representatives of the many “Indian tribes;” the Treaty offering the extra indication that he was from Cape Sable, thus establishing the crucial geographical connection with the community of Sang-Mêlés people of that region, as evidenced in this report.    

Besides the signing of official documents establishing a connection to both the criterion of ancestral connection and a geographically-located historical community, we should also note that the Métis of Sault-Ste-Marie, just like the Acadian-Métis people of Cape Sable, were mostly described by outsiders using various terms such as “Half-breeds,” “Métis,” and  “half-savage,”[199] while the term “sang-mêlés” was also used to describe the Métis population in Sault-Ste-Marie and other regions of the Great Lakes such as Michilimackinac[200] and Red River.[201] There is therefore no valid reason to exclude the identification of the Acadian-Métis people on the basis of the different ethnonyms used historically to describe them, a fortiori if the same ethnonyms were used to describe other Métis communities across Canada. The same argument extends to the historical usage of the term “Indian,” as we found it in the Treaty of 1726 signed by the Mius family of Cape Sable, as ample evidence produced in the case, and in Daniels (2016), demonstrates that the historical usage of the term “Indian” and/or “Sauvage” often included, respectively, the Inuit and the Métis peoples, thus allowing the declaration by the Court that both the Métis and Inuit (although distinct peoples) be considered as “Indians” per section 91(24) of the Constitution Act of 1867.

The fact that François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père considered the Métis of Acadia, the Sang-Mêlés, to have been a distinct people who were more than merely mixed-blooded people is especially important when one takes into account the Powley rationale, on a comparative basis. Based on the work of Rameau de Saint-Père, the Métis of Acadia-- the Sang-Mêlés of Southwest Nova Scotia-- fulfill this requirement, particularly if one takes into account the fact that Rameau de Saint-Père considered the Métis of Acadia to be a people distinct from the people of pure European descent, and from the Mi'kmaq, with their own customs, practices, and ethnicity, referring to the Mius and Doucet as the Sang-Mêlés of Tusket Forks/Quinan (Nova Scotia), as “Bois-Brûlés” and “Métis,” after having spent significant time in person among these communities.[202]   

It is important to note that François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père’s definition of the Métis of Acadia, found in his 1890 work, Documents Inédits du Canada-Français: Documents sur l’Acadie: CII: Remarques sur les Registres de Belle-Isle-en-Mer, was published 113 years before every aspect of the official requirements of the Powley Test become authoritative; that is, as demonstrated by the evidence, the Acadian-Métis formed a distinctive collective social identity, lived together in the same geographic area, and shared a common way of life. The Acadian-Métis of Southwest Nova Scotia were clearly more than simply a group of mixed-blooded Acadians. This is affirmed by the fact that the Sang-Mêlés were forced to marry among themselves for generations because of the denigration they endured from the Pur Acadian parishioners of Baie-Sainte-Marie, and of the parish of Saint-Anne-du-Ruisseau, during Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s time spent among the Acadians in the first half of the 1800s.

   

The negative reaction to intermarriage between Acadians and Indigenous people had a significant cultural impact at the time. According to Tours, France native Père Guy-Marie Oury:

Parmi les familles françaises du Cap-Sable, il s’en trouve de sang-mêlé; les Acadiens de pure race vivent en paix avec elles, mais les méprisent extrêmement et se croiraient déshonorés si leurs enfants venaient à contracter avec eux une mésalliance. M. Sigogne s’étonne et s’indigne de ce racisme latent qui lui paraît renverser les principes chrétiens fondamentaux.[203]

This translates as: 

Among the French families of Cape Sable, there are mixed-bloods; Acadians of pure race live in peace with them, but despise them extremely, and would think themselves dishonored if their children come into contract with them; a misalliance. M. Sigogne is astonished and indignant at this latent racism which seems to him to overthrow the fundamental Christian principles.[204]

Père Guy-Marie Oury asserts the following regarding Southwest Nova Scotia during the time that Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne spent there:

Le problème des métis était propre au Cap-Sable; à la Baie point de familles au sang mêlé, au moins de notoriété publique; cela pourrait indiquer une différence dans l’origine, encore mal connue, des deux groupes acadiens; la Baie serait peuplée de familles revenues de la Nouvelle-Angleterre une dizaine d’années après la déportation; au Cap les Acadiens descendraient surtout de familles réfugiées dans les bois auprès des Indiens, vivant à l’orée de la forêt, en des sortes de caches à demi enfouies dans le sol.[205]

Translated, this reads: 

The métis problem was unique to Cape Sable; at the Bay there are no families of mixed blood, at least of public notoriety; this could indicate a difference in origin, still poorly known, of the two Acadian groups; the Bay would be populated by families returning from New England about ten years after the deportation; At the Cape the Acadians would descend mainly from refugee families in the woods near the Indians, living on the edge of the forest, in sorts of caches half-buried in the soil.

     

Père Guy-Marie Oury observes here that “Le problème des métis était propre au Cap-Sable; à la Baie point de familles au sang mêlé, au moins de notoriété publique” (which translates as: The métis problem was unique to Cape Sable; at the Bay there are no families of mixed blood, at least of public notoriety), which is especially important because the surviving registers of Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne, especially those of his parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau in the area of Cape Sable,  tend to display such a trend in terms of the frequency of Purs marrying Sang-Mêlés.

Based on what the data indicates so far, the one group of people who tended to marry Sang-Mêlés were what the authors refer to herein as the “outsiders.” Otherwise, Sang-Mêlés tended to marry other Sang-Mêlés, while Purs married other Purs. As seen throughout this report, the strong preference for parents of Pur children to have their children marry other Purs instead of Sang-Mêlés created many frustrations for Père Sigogne, even after only a few years of living among the Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia.[206]

   

         

The Acadians of the area, moreover, acquired bits and pieces of the Mi’kmaq language. John MacLean writes: 

There are extant numerous vocabularies of the native languages. Our first published vocabulary was that of Jacques Cartier, in 1545, who left us some specimens of the language of the extinct Hochelagans. Some of these vocabularies are to be found in books of travel and scientific magazines, but the greater part of them remain in manuscript deposited in the archives of churches, colleges, public libraries, historical societies and private persons. Vocabularies of the following languages spoken in the Dominion are known to exist: Mohawk, Micmac, Seneca, Cayuga, Oneida, Onondaga, Tuscarora, Algonquin, Nanticoke, Shawnee, Abnaki, Mississauga, Ottawa, Acadian, Munsee, Nipissing, Penobscot and Pottawotomi…”[207]

This excerpt is important, as MacLean asserts that Acadian is a Native language and is, therefore, not classified as French from France. Although this excerpt does not specifically concern the Sang-Mêlés of Southwest Nova Scotia, it clearly demonstrates that the Acadian language was considered as a Native language of the Dominion of Canada from an ethnological perspective as early as 1896.[208] This observation about the existence of a distinct language reinforces the cultural markers already examined, including the exclusionary prejudices targeting the Métis of Nova Scotia, significant endogamic marriage patterns, a geographical proximity over 350 years, the signature of a Friendship Treaty by a member of the Muis family from Cape Sable, and an Acadian people identified by numerous collective and distinctive ethnonyms used across Canada to identify other Métis peoples. Taken together, the evidence presented in this report reveals the contour of a Métis people that cannot be reduced to simply the presence of their Indigenous ancestry (although central to their identity). Rather, it constitutes an enduring culture, whose descendants are still asking for proper recognition. As such, the evidence in this report echoes the warning given by the 2016 decision of Supreme Court of Canada in Daniels about the diversity of Métis peoples, quoting at paragraph 17:

There is no one exclusive Metis people in Canada, any more than there is no one exclusive Indian people in Canada. The Metis of eastern Canada and northern Canada are as distinct from Red River Metis as any two peoples can be. . . . As early as 1650, a distinct Metis community developed in LeHeve [sic], Nova Scotia, separate from Acadians and Micmac Indians. All Metis are aboriginal people. All have Indian ancestry.[209] 


16. Conclusion    

The Métis peoples need to return to the true meaning behind the word “Métis” and to refer to themselves in the way envisioned by Louis David Riel. Riel meant for the term “Métis” to be inclusive, not exclusive, when he first decided to use it to refer to his people. Riel’s intention is evident in the following excerpt from his May 10, 1877 letter to Paul Proulx:

C’est un nom qui signifie mélange. Jusqu’ici il a servi à désigner la race issue de sang mêlé des européens et des Sauvages, mais il est également propre à dénommer une race d’hommes, qui se recruterait du mélange de tous les sangs, entr’eux ; et qui, tout en passant dans la moule canadien-français, conserverait le souvenir de son origine, en s’appelant métisse. Le nom métis serait agréable à tout le monde, parce qu’il n’est pas exclusif et qu’il a l’avantage de mentionner d’une manière convenable, le contingent pour lequel chaque nation contribuerait à fonder le peuple nouveau…”[210]

Translated, this reads:

It is a name that signifies mixture. So far, it has served to designate the race issued from the mixed-blood of the Europeans and the savages, but it is equally proper to denominate a race of men, which is recruited from a mixture of all bloods, among them; and who, while passing through the French-Canadian mold, would retain the memory of its origin, by calling them métisse. The name métis would be agreeable to all, because it is not exclusive and that it has the advantage of mentioning in a suitable manner, the contingent for which each nation would help to found the new people.

   

Cleary, Louis Riel envisioned the meaning of the the term “Métis” in an inclusive fashion, and as evidence suggests, Riel has been a source of inspiration for the Métis of the Maritime provinces since at least 1975 (The Citizen, November 16, 1975, p. 2), when they were not directly compared to the Métis of the North-West by the New York Times in 1886 following the agitation of the Acadian Métis of Paspébiac.[211] Although the term “Métis” had been in use in Acadia for quite some time by the time François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père referred to these Mius and Doucet descendants as Bois-Brûlés and Métis in 1890, it appears that Rameau de Saint-Père felt the term was applicable to the mixed-blooded Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia, because of the similarities he observed between the Métis of the Western provinces of Canada and the mixed-blooded Mius and Doucets in Southwest Nova Scotia.[212] Both groups were, for the most part, far removed from their closest full-blooded First Nations ancestors by the 1880/1890s, and Riel acknowledged this fact himself, in relation to the Métis of the Western provinces, in a work from 1885:  

Le nom de métis rend bien l’idée du mélange du [sang.] Le nom français, métis convient mieux à cette race d’homme que le mot anglais Halfbreed. Car tout approprié que ce nom fût à la première génération du mélange du sang, maintenant que le sang indien et européen sont mêlés à tous les degrés, l’idée qu’elle rend n’est pas assez général.

Ce mot métis, qui semble être un dérivé du mot latin mixtus, exprime ce mélange d’une manière aussi générale que possible, et devient un nom convenable de race.

Qu’on me permette ici de faire une petite remarque. Il y a beaucoup de gens très polis et très gentils qui souvent diront à un métis, mais vous n’avez pas l’air d’avoir grand sang sauvage; on dirait que vous êtes blanc. oh! vous n’avez pas de sang sauvage. – ces personnes parlent sous l’influence des préjuges qu’ils ont vis-à-vis des indiens, et leurs compliments semblent partir de l’idée qu’un métis devrait rougir de ses ancêtres indiens et c’est probablement partir pour lui aider à porter le poids de sa honte qu’on se dépêche de lui dire: oh! vous n’avez pas presque pas de sang sauvage.

Les métis sont chrétiens. Quand même leur origine indienne est humble, ils tiennent à honorer leurs mères autant que leurs pères. Le métis s’en tient à son nom de race. Il ne s’occupe à quel degré, de mélange ils possèdent son [sang] indien et son sang Européen. Pour peu qu’il ait de l’un a l’autre, il dit, je suis métis, et c’est fini, ses enfants le sont jusqu’à …[213]

This translates to:

The name métis gives the idea of a mixture of [blood.] the french name, métis, is better suited to this race of men than the english word Halfbreed. For it is appropriate that this name should be for the first generation of the mixing of blood, now the indian and european blood are mixed to all degrees, the idea it gives is not general enough.

The word métis, which seems to be derived from the latin word mixtus, expresses this mixture in a manner that is as general as possible, and becomes a proper name of race.

Allow me to make a small remark here. There are many very polite and gentle people who will often say to a métis, but you do not seem to have a lot of savage blood; it looks like you’re white. oh! you do not have savage blood.—these people speak under the influence of the prejudices that they have toward the Indians, and their compliments seem to stem from the idea that a métis should redden from their indian ancestors and it is probably going to help him to carry the weight of his shame; we hurry to tell him: oh! you do not have close to any savage blood.

The métis are Christians. Even if their indian origin is humble, they take it to honour their mothers and their fathers. The métis holds to his name of race. He does not occupy himself with what degree, of mixture he possesses of his [blood] indian and his European blood. As long as he has from one and the other, he says, I am métis, and it is finished, his children are so…

     

Riel also relates the following, in regard to his Métis ancestry; “22 Mai 1876. Connaissez-moi, presque tout mon sang vient de la France; j’en ai de l’Irlande; et j’ai du sang sauvage,”[214] which translates to: “May 22 1876: Know me: close to all my blood comes from France; I have blood from Ireland; and I have savage blood.”

     

It is evident from these passage that the First Nations heritage of the Métis of the Western provinces of Canada was very diverse, and that their latest Métis or indigenous ancestor often stretched far back in terms of generations by the late 1800s, as Louis Riel himself acknowledges. But, we suggest, this changes nothing in relation to the cultural emergence of Métis cultures across Canada, which cannot be reduced to that fact alone, albeit an important one when it comes to prove ancestral connections to element of Indigeneity. Métis cultures are diverse and evolved differently through time across Canada, and they should not be ridiculed by the distance that separates Acadian Métis from their Indigenous ancestors.

Also worth noting is that Riel himself recognized the presence of Métis people in Atlantic Canada. This acknowledgement appears in the following excerpt from a July 06, 1885 letter written in a Regina prison by Riel to Captain R.B. Dean, the Honourable Edgar Dewdney, and Sir John A. MacDonald; “Quant aux provinces Canadiennes de l’Est, beaucoup de Métis y vivent méprisés sous le Costume indienne. Leurs villages sont des villages d’indigence. Leur titre indien au sol est pourtant aussi bon que le titre indien des Métis du Manitoba.”[215] Translated, this reads: “When it comes to the Eastern provinces of Canada, many Métis live there persecuted in the attire of the Indian costume. Their villages are villages of indigence. Their Indian title to the land is, however, as good as the Indian title of the Métis of Manitoba.”

     

Riel also acknowledges the presence of the Métis people in the Eastern provinces of Canada in the following excerpt:

J’ai dit aussi que si le principe de donner un septième des terres aux Métis dans le Nord-Ouest est bon, il devrait être bon dans l’Est aussi, et si notre voix ne peut se faire entendre, en ma qualité de citoyen américain, j’inviterai les Allemands des Etats et je leur dirai : “Si vous avez jamais l’occasion de traverser la frontière, faites-le, et aidez aux Métis et aux sauvages de l’Est à avoir un revenu équivalant au septième.”…[216]

This translates to:

I also said that if the principle of giving one seventh of the land to the Métis in the North-West is good, it should also be good in the East, and if our voice cannot be heard, as an American citizen, I will invite the Germans from the States and I will say to them: “If you ever have the opportunity to cross the border, do it, and help the Métis and the Savages of the East to have an income equivalent to the seventh...

     

From these passages, we can witness that Métis leader Louis Riel did recognize the existence of Métis with equivalent rights and standing as peoples (and not as merely “mixed”), even in the Eastern provinces of Canada. This should come as a fair warning to those who attempt to prevent Eastern Métis from using the ethnonym “Métis,” which has also been part of their culture, per the evidence reviewed in this report. As demonstrated in this work, we know that François Edme Rameau de Saint-Père referred to the Mius and Doucet descendants of Tusket Forks/Quinan, Nova Scotia as “Bois-Brûlés” and “Métis” in 1890, because he most likely felt those terms applied to the mixed-blooded Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia, having observed similarities between the Métis of the East, and those of the Western provinces of Canada.

Rameau’s usage of these ethnonyms to refer collectively and distinctively to the mixed-blooded Acadians of Southwest Nova Scotia in 1890 provides further proof that the mixed-blooded Mius and Doucet descendants of Southwest Nova Scotia, particularly the descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I, have always been considered distinct from the general population of the Acadians of that region. Other ethnonyms were used by various observers; ethnonyms also used to describe different Métis peoples across Canada, from Sault-Ste-Marie to the Red River Valley. The Acadian-Métis people were considered distinct from the “Sauvages” and the Pur Acadians and were of a “caste” of their own. The Sang-Mêlé (Métis) caste was then considered the lowest of the low, and the families of this caste were the recipients of extreme prejudice and discrimination, based on what was sometimes the presence of Indigenous-mixed heritage, often stretching many generations back. This fact alone did not preclude the Métis-Acadien from being recognized as sharing a common way of life and living in the same geographical region, in this case Cape Sable, as a group that was distinct from both Acadians of European descent, and the First Nations.

     

In conclusion, on the strength of the evidence reviewed, it is clear that the Acadian-Métis (the Sang-Mêlés people) of Southwest Nova Scotia, especially the descendants of Joseph Mius d’Azy I and Germain Doucet (1641), are “Métis” people in every historical sense of the word.

Signed,

Christian Boudreau BSW, BSc. Psychology


References Cited

Archival Documents

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Achidiocèse de Québec Archives. Sigogne, J.M. A letter written to Monseigneur Pierre Denaut on October 15, 1802 at Baie-Sainte-Marie. 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, Vol. 41. pg. 4.

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Boudreau, G.C. Sigogne Par Les Sources. Moncton, New Brunswick: Les Éditions d’Acadie. 1997.

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d’Entremont. C.J. A Brief History of Pubnico: Third Edition. West-Pubnico, Nova Scotia: La Société historique acadienne de Pubnico-Ouest. October, 2000.

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d’Entremont. C.J. Histoire de Wedgeport de 1767 à Nos Jours: Deuxième Édition.  Wedgeport, Nova Scotia: Les Éditions Lescarbot. 1995.

d’Entremont. C.J. Histoire de Quinan, Nouvelle-Écosse. Middle West Pubnico, Nova Scotia: Self-published. 1984.

d’Entremont. C.J. Histoire de Wedgeport de 1767-1967. Yarmouth, Nova Scotia: Self-Published. 1967.

d’Entremont, H.L. The Forts of Cape Sable of the Seventeenth Century. Yarmouth, Nova Scotia: R. H. Davis and Co., Limited. 1938.

d’Entremont, C.J. Historique de Saint-Michel de Wedgeport, Nouvelle-Écosse: Par Le Capitaine Hilaire-Valentin Pothier, 1884-1885: Notes et Commentaires par Clarence-Joseph d’Entremont, Prêtre. Yarmouth, Nova Scotia: l’Imprimerie Lescarbot Ltée. 1986.

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DNAeXplained—”Genetic Genealogy. Germain Doucet and Haplogroup C3b.” September 18, 2012. Web. Accessed February 22, 2018.

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Foxcurran, R., S. Malette, and M. Bouchard. Songs Upon the Rivers: The Buried History of the French-Speaking Canadiens and Métis from the Great Lakes and the Mississippi Across to the Pacific. Baraka Books, 2016.

Gaudet, P. Généalogie des Familles Acadiennes: Avec Documents: Rapport Concernant les Archives Canadiennes Pour l’Année 1905. En Trois Volumes. Volume II. Appendice A: 3ième Partie. Ottawa, Ontario: National Archives of Canada. 1906. p. iv.

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Her Majesty the Queen. Factum of Appellant, Her Majesty the Queen. November 27, 2000. p. 3 and p. 20. University of Saskatchewan: Native Law Legal Pleadings Search database. Web. http://www.usask.ca/nativelaw/factums/view.php?id=15. Accessed February 25, 2018.

Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. “Métis Rights.” Web. Undated. https://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/eng/1100100014413/1100100014414. Accessed February 25, 2018.

Leblanc, R. G. Le Voyage de Rameau de Saint-Père en Acadie: 1860. Québec City, Québec: Les éditions du Septentrion. 2018.

MacLean, J. Canadian Savage Folk: The Native Tribes of Canada. Toronto, Ontario: William Briggs, Wesley Buildings. 1896.

Malette, S., and G. Marcotte. “Marie-Louise: Protector of Louis Riel in Québec.” Media Tropes 7(1): 2017; 26-74.

Massignon, G. “Genealogy and Family Names: Family Names in Acadia.”  Volume VI: Nos. 3, 4,  French Canadian and Acadian Genealogical Review. 1978.

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Moorsom, W. Letters From Nova Scotia; comprising Sketches of a Young Country. London: Henry Colburn and Richard Bently, New Burlington Street, 1830.

Nashua Telegraph. “Claim.” Nashua Telegraph, Wednesday, January 12, 1977, p. 8.

Oury, G. “Les débuts du missionnaire Sigogne en Acadie.” Les Cahiers des dix, (40), 43–86. doi:10.7202/1016208ar. 1975.

Paulin, S. “Des Métis convergent vers Burnt Church.” L’Acadie Nouvelle, October 12, 1999, p. 4.

Province of Nova Scotia. Historical Vital Statistics online database entry for the death of Fibbean Jaquard (Filbert Jacquard), Registration Year: 1868— Book: 1818— Page: 32— Number: 120. Web. https://www.novascotiagenealogy.com/ItemView.aspx?ImageFile=1818-32&Event=death&ID=52076. Accessed February 27, 2018.

Province of Nova Scotia. Historical Vital Statistics online database entry for the death of Mary E. Jacquard (Marie Elizabeth Jacquard [Mius]), Registration Year: 1875— Book: 1818— Page: 107— Number: 95. Web. https://www.novascotiagenealogy.com/ItemView.aspx?ImageFile=1818-107&Event=death&ID=53467. Accessed February 27, 2018.

Rameau de Saint-Père, F.E. Documents Inédits du Canada-Français: Documents sur l’Acadie: CII: Remarques sur les Registres de Belle-Isle-en-Mer, par Mr E. Rameau de Saint-Père. Québec: J.-J. Demers & Frère. 1890.

Rameau de Saint-Père, F.E. Un Voyage en Acadie. Paris, France: L'économiste Français. Circa 1860. Digital copy; “Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec’s (BAnQ)” online collection entitled, “Numérique Patrimoine québécois”. http://numerique.banq.qc.ca/patrimoine/details/52327/1987153. Accessed January 15, 2018.

Rameau de Saint-Père, F.E. Une colonie féodale en Amérique : l’Acadie (1604-1881) – Tome Premier. Paris, France: Libraire Plon. 1889.

Riel, Louis. La Reine vs. Louis Riel accusé et convaincu du crime de haute trahison: Rapport; procès à Régina.-Appel à la Cour du Banc de la Reine, Manitoba.-Appel au Conseil Privé, Angleterre.-Pétition pour lexamen du condamné par des médecins-experts.-Liste des pétitions pour la commutation de la sentence. Ottawa: l’Imprimeur de la Reine. 1886.

Rundquist, M.A. “Finding Anne Marie: The Hidden History of Our Acadian Ancestors.” 2006. Web. https://www.cbu.ca/indigenous-affairs/unamaki-college/mikmaq-resource-centre/essays/finding-anne-marie-the-hidden-history-of-our-acadian-ancestors/. Accessed February 22, 2018.

Saundaus Griffiths, N.E. and J.G. Reid. “New Evidence on New Scotland, 1629.” The William and Mary Quarterly Vol. 49, No. 3. 1992, 492–508.

Stanley, G.F.G., Huel, R.J.A., Martel, G., Flanagan, T., and Campbell, G. The Collected Writings of Louis Riel/Les Ecrits Complets de Louis Riel: Vol. 2. Edmonton, Alberta: The University of Alberta Press. 1985.

Stanley, G.F.G., Huel, R.J.A., Martel, G., Flanagan, T., and Campbell, G. The Collected Writings of Louis Riel/Les Ecrits Complets de Louis Riel: Vol. 3. Edmonton, Alberta: The University of Alberta Press. 1985.

Teillet, J. “R. v. Powley: A Summary of the Supreme Court of Canada Reasons for Judgment.” Web. Undated. http://www.pstlaw.ca/resources/Powley%20summary-final.pdf. Accessed February 25, 2018.

The Citizen. “Louis Riel Remembered.” The Ottawa Citizen, October 15, 1975, p. 2.

The Nova Scotia Archives. “An Acadian Parish Reborn: Post–Deportation Argyle—First 50 Years of Catholic Parish Records 1799–1849.” Online database. Web. https://novascotia.ca/archives/acadian/reborn/. Accessed February 5, 2018.

The Nova Scotia Archives. “An Acadian Parish Remembered: The Registers of St. Jean-Baptiste, Annapolis Royal, 1702–1755” Online database. Web. https://novascotia.ca/archives/acadian/. Accessed February 5, 2018.

Wikitree. “Profile for Germain Doucet II (abt. 1641 - bef. 1698).” Web. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Doucet-19. Accessed February 26, 2018.

Wikitree. “Profile for Marie (Cayote-Blanc) Coyoteblanc (abt. 1660 - aft. 1682).” Web. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Cayote-Blanc-1. Accessed February 26, 2018.

Wikitree. “Profile for Marie Jeanne (Kjipuktuk) Unknown (abt. 1610).” Web. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Kjipuktuk-3. Accessed February 26, 2018.

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Jurisprudence

Daniels v. Canada (Indian Affairs and Northern Development), 2016 SCC 12, [2016] 1 S.C.R. 99.

R. v. Laviolette, [2005] SKPC 70.

R. v. Powley, [2003] 2 S.C.R. 207, 2003 SCC 43.

R v Powley, [2003], 2 S.C.R. 207, (Factum of the Appellant, Her Majesty the Queen) C34065.

R. v. Van der Peet, [1996] 2 S.C.R. 507.

List of Illustrations

Illustration 1: A section of “A sermon, Pénitence Imposée” …….……………….….………………3

Illustration 2: Excerpt from the Memorial of Captain Cyprian Southack, 1718……..………….... 18

Illustration 3: January 04, 1745 Nova Scotia Council minutes. Paul Mascarene..…………....…19

Illustration 4: Land donation to Joseph Mius D’Azy l………………..………………………………23

Illustration 5: Correspondence between Père Sigogne and Monseigneur Plessis,1809.….……27          

Illustration 6:  André Lasnier was baptized on December 27, 1632 in Libourne, France…….... 34

Illustration 7: Sigogne’s sermon to the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, 1826……… 47    

Illustration 8:  A sermon, Pénitence Imposée, Sigogne to the parishioners, 1826………...…… 49

Illustration 9: Location of the first wave of métissage……………………………...………………..90


Appendices

Appendix I

There are multiple First Nations roots present in the ancestries of Joseph O’Burd and Osithes Doucet, whom Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne included in the “caste dêtestée des gens mêlés,” in his April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis (see Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61). However, I have chosen to focus on Osithes’ direct paternal “Doucet” ancestry.

According to the registers of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau, Joseph Doucet (Joseph Doucet II), husband of Ludivine Mius, died in November of 1809 and was buried on November 18, 1809 in the absence of a priest. Joseph is stated in his burial record to have been approximately 76 years old when he died; therefore, he was born circa 1733.

If we turn to the registers of the parish of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Port Royal, Acadia, we see that Joseph Doucet (Joseph Doucet I) and his wife, Anne Surette baptized a child named Joseph (Joseph Doucet II) on December 09, 1731. Joseph II was stated to have been born on December 06, 1731.

Appendix ll

Outsiders/Métis: 

Three Children of “Outsiders,” Antoine François Richard and of Jean Marie Cottreau to Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his Unknown First Nations Wife

1.       A. Jean François Cottreau and Marie Elizabeth Richard

B. Charles Cottreau and Françoise Richard

C. Pierre Cottreau and Marguerite Richard

Children of

2.           Jean Marie Cottreau and Marie Hinard

Daughter of

3.           Pierre Hinard (“Outsider”) and Anne-Rosalie Mius (Louis Mius II, son of Anne-Rosalie’s brother, Louis Mius II was recorded as a “Sang-Mêlé” in 1809)

Daughter of

4.       Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josephe Préjean

Son of

5.           Joseph Mius d’Azy I (“Part Indian”) and Marie Amirault dit Tourangeau

Son of

6.       Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and Unknown First Nations Woman  

 

Three Children of “Outsiders,” Antoine François Richard and of Jean Marie Cottreau to Germain Doucet (1641) 

1.  A. Jean François Cottreau and Marie Elizabeth Richard

         B. Charles Cottreau and Françoise Richard

         C. Pierre Cottreau and Marguerite Richard

Children of

2. Antoine François Richard (Outsider) and Cécile Doucet

Daughter of

3.       Jean Magloire Doucet and Hélène Amirault

Son of

4.       Joseph Doucet (Descendants are recorded as “Sang-Mêlés,” “Bois-Brûlés,” and “Métis”) and Anne Agnès Surette

Son of

5.       Claude Doucet (dit Maître Jean) and Marie Comeau

Son of

6.       Germain Doucet (1641) (“Venu du Canada”/DNA Haplogroup C-P39) and Marie Marguerite Landry 

 

Marie Elizabeth Mius, wife of “Outsider,” Philibert-Sylvestre Jacquard to Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his Unknown First Nations Wife 

1.       Philibert-Sylvestre Jacquard (“Outsider”) and Marie Elizabeth Mius

Daughter of 

2.       Paul Mius (Two of Paul’s children are recorded as “Sang-Mêlés” in 1809) and Marie Leblanc

Son of

3.       Jean-Baptiste Mius d’Azy l and Marie Josèphe Surette

Son of

4.           Joseph Mius d’Azy I (“Part Indian”) and Marie Amirault dit Tourangeau

Son of

5.       Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and Unknown First Nations Woman 

 

Sang-Mêlés  (Métis) from 1809 letter 

Sang-Mêlé (Métis) Osithes Doucet to Germain Doucet (1641) 

1.       Joseph O’Burd and Osithes Doucet

Daughter of

3.       Joseph Doucet ll and Ludivine Mius

Son of

4.       Joseph Doucet l (Descendants are recorded as “Sang-Mêlés,” “Bois-Brûlés,” and “Métis”) and Anne Agnès Surette

Son of

5.       Claude Doucet (dit Maître Jean) and Marie Comeau

Son of

6.       Germain Doucet (1641) (“Venu du Canada”/DNA Haplogroup C-P39) and Marie Marguerite Landry

Sang-Mêlé (Métis) Isaac Mius to Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his Unknown First Nations Wife

1.       Isaac Mius and Marguerite Moulaison

Son of

2.       Paul Mius and Marie Leblanc

Son of

3.       Jean-Baptiste Mius d’Azy and Marie Josèphe Surette

Son of

4.           Joseph Mius d’Azy I (“Part Indian”) and Marie Amirault dit Tourangeau

Son of

5.       Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and Unknown First Nations Woman

   

Sang-Mêlé (Métis) Louis Mius II to Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his Unknown First Nations Wife 

1.       Louis Mius II and Théoiste Doucet

Son of

2.       Louis Mius I and Anne Corporon

Son of

3.       Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Marie-Josephe Préjean

Son of

4.           Joseph Mius d’Azy I (“Part Indian”) and Marie Amirault dit Tourangeau

Son of

5.       Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and Unknown First Nations Woman

 

 Sang-Mêlé (Métis) Dominique Mius to Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his Unknown First Nations Wife 

1.       Dominique Mius and Anne Mius

Son of

2.       Paul Mius and Marie Leblanc

Son of

3.       Jean-Baptiste Mius d’Azy and Marie Josèphe Surette

Son of

4.           Joseph Mius d’Azy I (“Part Indian”) and Marie Amirault dit Tourangeau

Son of

5.       Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and Unknown First Nations Woman

 

Sang-Mêlé (Métis) Anne Mius to Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his Unknown First Nations Wife 

1.           Dominique Mius and Anne Mius

Daughter of

2.           Jean-Pierre Mius and Anne Doucet

Son of

3.           François Mius d’Azy and Jeanne Duon

Son of

4.           Joseph Mius d’Azy I (“Part Indian”) and Marie Amirault dit Tourangeau

Son of

5.       Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and Unknown First Nations Woman

 

Sang-Mêlé  (Métis) Théoiste Doucet to Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his Unknown First Nations Wife 

 1.       Louis Mius II and Théoiste Doucet

Daughter of

2.       Charles Doucet and Felicité Mius

Daughter of

3.       Charles-Amand Mius and Marie Marthe Hébert

Son of

4.           Joseph Mius d’Azy I (“Part Indian”) and Marie Amirault dit Tourangeau

Son of

5.       Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and Unknown First Nations Woman

 

Sang-Mêlé  (Métis) Théoiste Doucet to Germain Doucet (1641) 

1.       Louis Mius II and Théoiste Doucet

Daughter of

2.       Charles Doucet and Felicité Mius

Son of

3.       Joseph Doucet and Anne Agnès Surette

Son of

4.       Claude Doucet (dit Maître Jean) and Marie Comeau

Son of

5.       Germain Doucet (1641) (“Venu du Canada”/DNA Haplogroup C-P39) and Marie Marguerite Landry


Appendix lll

There is another well-known Métis Mius whose origins lie in the region of Cape Sable. This was Mathieu Mius and, according to Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont, Mathieu was the full-brother of Joseph Mius d’Azy I. [1] Père d’Entremont asserts that Mathieu and Joseph I were both sons of Philippe Mius d’Entremont II and his unnamed first wife, a First Nations woman from the eastern shore of what is now known as the Bay of Barrington, Nova Scotia. [2]

Although no primary source document exists to conclusively prove the connection between Mathieu Mius and Joseph Mius d’Azy I, a few circumstantial pieces of primary source evidence exist to support the claim that these two mixed-blooded men were brothers, and the connection has become well-accepted among genealogists and historians alike. The first piece of circumstantial evidence to connect Joseph Mius d’Azy I to Mathieu Mius is the fact that both men were stated to have been residents of Cape Sable at the same time on many occasions, both men had “Mius” as a surname, and both men were of First Nations descent.

We know that Joseph Mius d’Azy I was of First Nations descent because, as previously mentioned, he was stated to have been a part Indian who dwelt at Port Le Tore in Captain Cyprian Southack’s January 22, 1718 memorial concerning “Fishing Losses” in Acadia. [3] Mathieu Mius was demonstrated to be of First Nations descent in two key documents that provide us with this information. The first document is the enumeration of Mathieu’s family on the 1708 census of Acadia.[4]  Mathieu is listed under the “Sauvage” section of Cape Sable. Mathieu is stated to have been 26 years old on this enumeration and was, therefore, born circa 1682. Mathieu is also stated to have had a 20-year-old wife named Madeleine (born circa 1688)   (no surname) and a son named Joachim, aged one year (born circa 1707).

Joseph Mius d’Azy I and his family were enumerated on the same census as residents of Cape Sable; however, they were recorded as residing in the “François” (French) section. Joseph I was recorded as having been 35 years old on this census and was, therefore, born circa 1673. It is, important to note that the ages given for Mathieu and Joseph I on this census are close enough for them to have been brothers.

A second piece of primary source documentation that demonstrates Mathieu’s First Nations ancestry can be found in the registers of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Port Royal, Acadia. This second record is the June 18, 1728 baptismal record of the daughter of Mathieu Mius and his wife, Marie Magdelaine, Marie, who was stated to have been about four months old when baptized. This record is important, as Mathieu is stated within it to have been a “Sauvage du Cap Sable” (Savage of Cape Sable). So, Mathieu was clearly considered to have been a “Sauvage,” and not a part Indian” like his full brother, Joseph Mius d’Azy I.

Although this particular section regarding Mathieu Mius contains a few pieces of circumstantial information, many additional documents have been used throughout this report to demonstrate that Joseph Mius d’Azy I and his descendants were, and have been, long-time residents of the Cape Sable Region and that his descendants who returned to the region post-Deportation were considered to have been Sang-Mêlés, Métis, and Bois-Brûlés. A compelling piece of evidence to support his identity lies in the fact that Mathieu Mius signed the 1726 Ratification of the Peace of 1725 Treaty as a Chief of the Indians of Cape Sable.”[5]

 

 


[1] Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763): Vol. 3. Louisiana: Hebert Publications. 1981, pp. 96, 1009.

[2] d’Entremont. C.J. A Brief History of Pubnico: Third Edition. West-Pubnico, Nova Scotia: La Société historique acadienne de Pubnico-Ouest. October, 2000.

[3] see Public Archives Canada. Captain Cyprian Southack’s January 22, 1718/9 Memorial. Colonial Office, Nova Scotia “A”, Phillips and Doucett 1719. Microfilm #C-9120 (MG 11, CO 217, N.S. “A”, Vol. 10.), pg. 9

[4] Properly titled, “Recensement gen[er]al : fait au mois de novembre mile sept cent huit de tous les sauviages de lAcadie qui resident dans la coste de l'est et de ceux de Pintagouet et de Canibeky famille par famille, leurs ages, celuy de leurs femmes et enfants: avec une recapitulation a la fin de la quantite d'hommes et de garcons capables d'aler a la guerre: comme aussy le recensement des francois establis a la ditte coste de l'Es, 1708 Nov.” (“General Census: made in the month of November mile seven hundred and eight of all the savages of the Acadia who reside on the east coast and those of Pintagouet and Canibeky family by family, their ages, that of their wives and children: with a recapitulation at the end of the quantity of men and boys able to war: as also does the census of the French established at the said cost of the East, 1708 Nov.).

[5] See “A Ratification of the Peace of 1725 at Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia by the Chiefs and Headmen of the Eastern Indians, June 4, 1726. B. Ratification of the Peace of 1725 at Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia with a different configuration of Indian signatures, June 4, 1726.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   


[1] Sigogne, J.M. Pénitence Imposée: A Sermon presented to the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau on November 05, 1826. Centre d’études acadiennes in Moncton, New Brunswick, 1.88-3, CN-2-53.

[2] See The Citizen. “Louis Riel Remembered.” The Citizen, October 15, 1975, p. 2, Nashua Telegraph. “Claim.” Nashua Telegraph, Wednesday, January 12, 1977, p. 8, and Paulin, S. “Des Métis convergent vers Burnt Church.” L’Acadie Nouvelle, October 12, 1999, p. 4.

[3] See the correspondence found in transcription format on page 72 of “Volume 2: 8 December / décembre 1875 – 4 June / juin 1884” of “The Collected Writings of Louis Riel/Les Écrits Complets de Louis Riel,” which is from a letter entitled, “2-019. Révélation contre Beauport. [Beauport]. 76/05/22.1.

[4] This document can be found on page 07/1238 of “Library and Archives Canada Microfilm #C-1229. Original translation in English provided by Sebastien Malette.

[5] Refer to Père André-Thomas Bourque’s 1911 book entitled, Chez les Anciens Acadiens: Causeries du Grand Père Antoine. P 59.

[6] Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, Vol. 41, p 4. 

[7] Moorsom, William. Letters from Nova Scotia: Comprising Sketches of a Young Country. Letter VII. H. Colburn and R. Bentley, Publishers. 1830. P 263.

[8] Ibid at 263.

[9] Plessis, Joseph-Octave Personal correspondence. Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 210 A, Registre des lettres, vol. X1: p. 30-31, 21 October, 1822.” p 2.

[10]Cooke, Thomas.  Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 311 CN, Nouveau-Brunswick, vol. VI: 80.

[11] Mascarene, Lieutenant-Governor Paul. January 04, 1745 Nova Scotia Council minutes.  Public Archives Canada. Library and Archives Canada Microfilm #H-1979 p 121-23.

[12] d’Entremont, Père Joseph Clarence. Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763). Hebert Publications, 1981, p 972.

[13] Public Archives Canada. Captain Cyprian Southack’s January 22, 1718/9 Memorial. Colonial Office, Nova Scotia “A”, Phillips and Doucett 1719. Microfilm #C-9120 (MG 11, CO 217, N.S. “A”, Vol. 10.), pg. 9.

[14] Public Archives Canada. Captain Cyprian Southack’s January 22, 1718/1719 Memorial. Colonial Office, Nova Scotia “A”, Phillips and Doucett 1719. Microfilm #C-9120 (MG 11, CO 217, N.S. “A”, Vol. 10.), pg. 9.

[15] Mascarene, Lieutenant-Governor Paul. January 04, 1745 Nova Scotia Council minutes.  Public Archives Canada. Library and Archives Canada Microfilm #H-1979 p 121-23.

[16] d’Entremont. C.J. A Brief History of Pubnico: Third Edition. West-Pubnico, Nova Scotia: La Société historique acadienne de Pubnico-Ouest. October, 2000. pg. 11.

[17] Joseph was born circa 1673/74 according to various documents, such as the 1708 census of Acadia, and Joseph I’s burial record.

[18] First Nation spouses’ names were frequently not provided in parish records in Canada from the time of first contact.

[19] Wikitree Profile for Marie (Cayote-Blanc) Coyoteblanc (abt. 1660 - aft. 1682). Web. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Cayote-Blanc-1. Accessed February 26, 2018.

[20] Wikitree Profile for Marie Jeanne (Kjipuktuk) Unknown (abt. 1610). Web. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Kjipuktuk-3. Accessed February 26, 2018.

[21] Improperly referred to as the “1708 Indian Census” by many amateur genealogists, as the census enumerates both “François” or, French people,  and “Sauvages.”

[22] The full title of the 1708 census of Acadia is “Recensement gen[er]al : fait au mois de novembre mile sept cent huit de tous les sauviages de lAcadie qui resident dans la coste de l'est et de ceux de Pintagouet et de Canibeky famille par famille, leurs ages, celuy de leurs femmes et enfants: avec une recapitulation a la fin de la quantite d'hommes et de garcons capables d'aler a la guerre: comme aussy le recensement des francois establis a la ditte coste de l'Es, 1708 Nov.” (“General Census: made in the month of November mile seven hundred and eight of all the savages of the Acadia who reside on the east coast and those of Pintagouet and Canibeky family by family, their ages, that of their wives and children: with a recapitulation at the end of the quantity of men and boys able to war: as also does the census of the French established at the said cost of the East, 1708 Nov.”). The census is unsigned and is part of the Edward E. Ayer Manuscript Collection of the Newbury Library in Chicago Illinois.

[23] It is reasonable to conclude that “Marie” (unknown surname) was likely a member of the Mi’kmaq tribe of La Hève, and that this is the “Sauvage settlement” referred to here.

[24] It is because of this document that we know for certain that it was Joseph Mius d’Azy I to whom Captain Cyprian Southack referred in his January 22, 1718 Memorial.

[25] Library and Archives Canada. Contrat temporaire dressé par Charles Saint-Étienne de La Tour (fils) à Joseph Mieuse, gendre de Touranjot, pour la vente d'un terrain mesurant un quart de lieue de front par une demie lieue de profondeur, situé au passage du Cap-Sable, 26 avril 1713 (MG18-F3). Collection de la famille Saint-Étienne de La Tour.

[26] Public Archives Canada. Captain Cyprian Southack’s January 22, 1718/9 Memorial. Colonial Office, Nova Scotia “A”, Phillips and Doucett 1719. Microfilm #C-9120 (MG 11, CO 217, N.S. “A”, Vol. 10.), pg. 9.

[27] Note that the spelling of surnames in this area varied, depending upon the writer, and family choices made to distinguish one group from another.

[28]  Le Centre de Recherche "Les Archives père Clarence d’'Entremont.” d’Entremont, C.J. Land donation to Joseph Mius D’Azy 1.  1998.3-F11-D#13.

[29]Refer to  Journall of a Voyage to Cape Britton on ye Kings Accot, by Mr Peter Capon, Commisary in one of his Sloops, from ye Fort of Annapolis Royall, on ye accot of Diverse Hoitillitys Committed by ye Indians, and Seizures made of diverse Vessells belonging to ye Subjects of ye Crown of Great Brittain, Commencing Augi 15th 1715, for to Enquire into, and demand Satisfaction for ye sd depredations, by order of ye Honble Majr Thos Caulfeild Lt Govr: of ye Majties Garrison of Annapolis Royall).

[30] Ibid.

[31] See page 1590 of Volume 4 of d'Entremont’s 1981 book entitled, Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763).

[32] Sigogne, J.M. A June 28, 1804 letter written to Monseigneur Pierre Denaut. Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61.

[33] Sigogne, J.M. An April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis. Achidiocèse de Québec Archives. 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61.

[34]  Of these couples, the couple especially worth mentioning in relation to the author’s own ancestry is Louis Mius and Théoiste Doucet. Their importance lies in the fact that Louis was the son of Louis Mius I and Anne Corporon, while Théoiste’s parents were Charles Doucet and Felicité Mius. The significance of these genealogies will be revealed further on in the report.

[35] d’Entremont. C.J. Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763): Vol. 3. Louisiana: Hebert Publications. 1981. p 974.

[36] Also known as “Baptiste.” See page 971 of “Volume 3” of Père Clarence Joseph d’Entremont’s 1981 book entitled, Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763).

[37] Paul Clermon was also known as Pierre Paul Le Marquis de Clermon, and was married to Marie Josephe Mius.

[38] See pages 08 to 10 of the “Volume 24: French Neutrals, 1758-1769” collection of the Massachusetts Archives.

[39] Refer to pages 981 and 982 of “Volume 3” of his 1981 book entitled, Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763).

[40] See pages 08 to 10 of the “Volume 24: French Neutrals, 1758-1769” collection of the  Massachusetts Archives.

[41] Refer to page 976 of “Volume 3” of his 1981 book entitled, Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763).

[42]  See page 16 of his 1922 book entitled, Place-Names of the Province of Nova Scotia,

[43] From Père Jean-Mandé Sigogne’s April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis (“Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61”).

[44] Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61.

[45] d’Entremont C.J.. Volume 3 Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763). 1981. P 986-7.

[46] See page  372 of the “Volume 23: French Neutrals, 1755-1758” collection of the Massachusetts Archives.

[47] Found on page 465 of “Volume 24: French Neutrals, 1758-1769” collection of the Massachusetts Archives.

[48] Refer to pages 983 and 984 of “Volume 3” of his 1981 book entitled, Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763).

[49] In his April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis (“Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61”).

[50] See pages 562 to 566 of the “Volume 24: French Neutrals, 1758-1769” collection of the Massachusetts Archives.

[51] See a detailed description of the lineage of Mathieu Mius in Appendix lV.

[52] Ibid at 486 to 491.

[53] Found in an April 29, 1809 letter (“Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61”).

[54] Massachusetts Archives. French Neutrals, 1758–-1769. A collection of the Massachusetts Archives. Volumes 23 and 24, p 283.  

[55] Haplogroup A”; according to the “Acadian AmerIndian Ancestry: Acadian and Amerindian Ancestry DNA Project’s” database of the mtDNA testing results of its participants, further testing revealed a more precise haplogroup of “A2f1a” (see https://www.familytreedna.com/public/AcadianAmerIndian?iframe=mtresults)), at least maternally (see Marie Rundquist’s 2006 book/article entitled, “Finding Anne Marie: The Hidden History of Our Acadian Ancestors” at https://www.cbu.ca/indigenous-affairs/unamaki-college/mikmaq-resource-centre/essays/finding-anne-marie-the-hidden-history-of-our-acadian-ancestors/).

[56] (“Haplogroup C3b”), at least paternally (see the “DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy” website’s September 18, 2012 article entitled, “Germain Doucet and Haplogroup C3b” at https://dna-explained.com/2012/09/18/germain-doucet-and-haplogroup-c3b/ (according to the “Acadian AmerIndian Ancestry: Acadian and Amerindian Ancestry DNA Project’s” database of the y-DNA testing results of its participants, further testing revealed a more precise haplogroup of “C-P39” (see https://www.familytreedna.com/public/AcadianAmerIndian?iframe=yresults)

[57] A copy of the original baptismal record can be found in “Folder # 1998.3-f11-F#59” at “Le Centre de Recherche "Les Archives père Clarence d'Entremont"” in Middle-West Pubnico, Nova Scotia.

[58] A copy of the original baptismal record can be found in Folder # 1998.3-f11-F#59; p 48,  at Le Centre de Recherche "Les Archives père Clarence d'Entremont" in Middle-West Pubnico, Nova Scotia.

[59] d’Entremont. C.J. Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763): Vol. 2. Louisiana: Hebert Publications. 1981. pgs. 402-403.

[60] See https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Kjipuktuk-3

[61] We now know that it is impossible for Doucet to have been the biological son of Germain Doucet, Sieur de La Verdure, yet the “Wikitree” profile for “Germain Doucet II” still has Germain 1641 (aka “Germain Doucet II” in this case) recorded as the son of “Germain  Doucet aka Sieur de Laverdure” (see https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Doucet-19).

[62] d’Entremont. C.J. Histoire du Cap-Sable De l'An Mil Au Traité de Paris (1763): Vol. 3. Louisiana: Hebert Publications. 1981. p 981.

[63] See “Public Archives Canada Microfilm #C-2572”

[64] Sigogne, J.M. A letter written to Monseigneur Pierre Denaut on January 26, 1800 at Baie Sainte-Marie. Achidiocèse de Québec Archives, 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 30.

[65] Sigogne, J.M. An April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis. Achidiocèse de Québec Archives. 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61.

[66] Ibid.

[67] This report will not provide details regarding the remaining three Sang-Mêlé (Mixed-Blooded) couples because the scope of this report is on the first author’s ancestors, Joseph Mius d’Azy II and Joseph Doucet, who are also ancestors of Louis II and/or Théoiste. Louis II is therefore, the nephew (once) of the first author’s ancestor, Anne-Rosalie Mius, and Théoiste is the niece (twice) of his ancestor, Jean-Magloire Doucet. Therefore, the first author descends from the Sang-Mêlé families of Southwest Nova Scotia as well.

[68] A more complete explanation of the Doucet Sang-Mêlé connection can be found in the Appendices.

        

[69] A transcription of this excerpt can be found in Gérald C. Boudreau’s 1997 book entitled, Sigogne par les sources.

[70] Sigogne, J.M. An April 29, 1809 letter to Monseigneur Joseph-Octave Plessis. Achidiocèse de Québec Archives. 312 CN, Nouvelle-Écosse, vol. 61.

[71] Gérald C. Boudreau’s footnotes relating to the Latin phrases in this excerpt can also be found on page 35 of “Sigogne par les sources” and are as follows, in sequential order for this passage: « Je sacrifierai cela très volontiers et de plus, je me sacrifierai moi-même. » . « Pressé de part et d'autre, j'ai renoncé cependant â mon désir. » . « Il est nécessaire, donc, de persévérer. »  Translated, this reads;  "I will sacrifice it very willingly and moreover, I will sacrifice myself. " "Pressed on both sides, I have given up my desire." "It is necessary, therefore, to persevere."

[72] A transcription of this excerpt can be found on pages 74 to 76 of Gérald C. Boudreau’s 1987 book entitled, Les écrits du père Sigogne: Volume 1.

[73] Sigogne, J.M. Remontrances au sujet du Mariage: A sermon presented to the parishioners of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau on October 20, 1826. Centre d’études acadiennes in Moncton, New Brunswick, 1.88-3, CN-2-52.

[74] Merriam Webster Dictionary website. Definition of the word, Caste. Web. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/caste. Accessed February 22, 2018.

[75] Ibid.

[76] The author uses the term “outsider” to denote those coming from outside the Acadian population.

[77] Sigogne, J.M. Remontrances au sujet du Mariage: A sermon presented to the parishioners of the parish of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau on October 20, 1826. Centre d’études acadiennes, Moncton, New Brunswick, 1.88-3, CN-2-52

[78] Sigogne, J.M. Pénitence Imposée: A Sermon presented to the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau on November 05, 1826. Centre d’études acadiennes in Moncton, New Brunswick, 1.88-3, CN-2-53.

[79] Sigogne, J.M. Pénitence Imposée: A Sermon presented to the parishioners of Sainte-Anne-du-Ruisseau on November 05, 1826. Centre d’études acadiennes in Moncton, New Brunswick, 1.88-3, CN-2-53.

[80] Casgrain, H.R. Collection des Documents Inédits sur le Canada et l’Amérique Publiés par le Canada-Français – Tome Troisième. Québec: J.-J. Demers & Frère. 1890.

[81] Rameau de Saint-Père’s chapter in this anthology is entitled, “Documents Inédits du Canada-Français: Documents sur l’Acadie: CII: Remarques sur les Registres de Belle-Isle-en-Mer, par Mr E. Rameau de Saint-Père.”

[82] See Culture et Communications Québec’s” online article entitled, “Rameau de Saint-Père, Edme” as part of their “Répertoire du patrimoine culturel du Québec” online collection at http://www.patrimoine-culturel.gouv.qc.ca/rpcq/detail.do?methode=consulter&id=16310&type=pge#.Wo7nIcuWx1s

[83] Brown, G.S. Yarmouth, Nova Scotia: A Sequel to Campbell's History. Boston: Rand Avery Company, Printers. 1888. pg. 456.

[84] A complete copy of this published account, “Un Voyage en Acadie,” can be found in the