Thursday, October 04, 2007

Fancy way of saying illegitimate child

I have been stuck on one of my family lines for history. It seemed like this insurmountable brick wall (of which I have so many) and I couldn't find out why or a way around. But I am good at digging and our family history centre where I volunteer has some new programs that are free sites for them but paid for at home. So awhile back I decided to search and see if I could find this ancestor and sure enough I finally got a copy of a baptismal certificate yesterday. Now you have to understand that to the French Catholic people, baptismal certificates hold more credence then birth certificate. I had to shake my head after I read it and though no bloody wonder I hit so many brick walls with my ancestors!!! This information was actually written on the certificate.

And I quote (the ancestor's name is Gabriel Lemieux by the way) "This Wednesday, tenth day of April 1630, was baptized the son of Anne Le Cornu, before Jean Le Cornu, her father, said Anne having had carnal relations, on the verbal promise of marrying Thomas Lemieux, now deceased, the infant being named Gabriel by Anne Le Cornu, widow of Jean Le Parent, aunt of said Anne, mother of the child and by Guillaume Baniguot, father of the second wife of said Jean Le Cornu, Godfather."

Then it continues by stating "In his marriage contact August 11, 1658 with Marguerite Leboeuf before notary public Audoart, Gabriel presented himself as the son of Louis Lenieux and Marie Luguan, widow of Pierre Lemieux. This was not the truth. Gabriel also lied about his age in various documents which added to the confusion." End of quote

No... ya think??? What confusion can there possibly be?? Note to self.. on Judgment day remember to ask God if it was so important that we do family history to record our families then why did He have to make it so difficult? I am going to frame this one on my wall cause after this one, all the rest of my work will seem so simple.


Heather Johnston said...

My feelings exactly! I've basically spent the weekend trying to reconstruct what happened there and I'm not even sure what that baptismal certificate says is the truth. Was it common to baptize illigitimate children back then? In one of the most important churches in town? This is the only mention of "Anne Cornu" I've found anywhere and the only mention of "Jean Cornu" as a "cartier". There was another Jean Le Cornu, a landowner, alive near Rouen at the same time. His son Laurent was the Treasurer of Rouen and all 3 sons are on a plaque in the city praising their gifts to the hospital and the poor. This Jean had six or eight children (depending on reports). Perhaps six with his first wife and two with a second someone Baniguot? Could two Jean le Cornu be alive in the same town at the same time with no overlap showing up in records?

Heather Johnston said...

Me feeligns exactly! Just spent most of a weekend trying to sort this out. Even then I'm not sure what's written on the baptismal certificate is the truth. Was it common to baptize bastard children back then? There are no further records of Anne or Jean the cardmaker, but there is another Jean le Cornu, a landowner living just outside Rouen at the same time adn his sons were prominent residents of hte city. One was the Treasurer. I guess we'll never know.