Monday, January 23, 2012

In Search Of: The Burial of Joseph Robillard

Who, according to the article below, drowned in the St-Lawrence River on 14 May, 1937.
MONTREAL. MAY 14 (INS) -- Two members of the crew of the S.S. Maple Branch dived into the icy waters of the St. Lawrence river today to rescue Joseph Labrecque, clinging to an overturned skiff for six hours.
With Eugene Tremblay and Joseph Robillard, Labrecque had left the home of a friend on the south shore to row back to Montreal.  Their skiff was capsized in the heavy waters and Tremblay and Robillard perished.
The water was so rough when the crew of the freighter perceived Labrecque's plight, a lifeboat could not be lowered and two of the crew went over the side to drag him to safety.

Published in the Lowell Sun 14 May, 1937 p.1.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

La Gazette de Joliette: Necrologie de Jerome Robillard - Publie 21 Novembre, 1884

The obituary of my paternal 2nd great-grandfather, Jerome Robillard, as it appeared published in "La Gazette de Joliette", Joliette, Quebec, on 21 Nov., 1884.

À Lowell, Mass., le 16 du courant
à l'âge de 59 ans, 3 mois et 27 jours,
est décédé Jérôme Robillard Écuyer
Ex-Agent Seigneurial des Seigneuries
de D'Aillebout et Ramsay. Le
défunt a passé sa vie dans l'enseignement
de la jeunesse et apres 27
années, de dévouement dans cette
carrière il fut nommé Agent pour
les Seigneuries de D'Aillebout et
Atteint peu après d'une maladie
qui l'obligea à donner sa démission
l'automne dernier; animé du zèle
de l'education de ses enfants, il partit
pour Lowell avec sa famille, le 17
janvier dernier, espérant revenir
bientôt dans sa paroisse. "Le Seigneur
en décide autrement," disait-il
dans les dernier jours de sa vie.
" Eh bien que sa sainte volonté soit
faite." Il montra une résignation
admirable en face de la mort,
et il s'endormit paisiblement dans le Seigneur.

Il laisse pour déplorer sa perte une
épouse cherie et inconsolable et 14 enfants dont 8 qui sont mariés et 6 en bas age.

R. I. P.

Thank you, Ruth! The above text was extracted and transcribed by Arielle Major over at La compagnie des arbres. I did attempt to extract and transcribe the text myself,  as you can see below. However, there were quite a few words that I didn't know. Those words have been marked with a question mark. All I can say is that it helps to have friends in those northern places! Thanks again, Ruth!

A Lowell, Mass., le 16 du courant
a l'age de 59 ans, 3 mois et 27 jours,
est decede Jerome Robillard. ?
Ex-Agent Seigneurial des Seigneuries
de D'Aillebout et Ramsay, Le
defunt a passe sa vie dans l'ensei-gnement
de la jeunesse et apres 27
annes, de devenement dans cette
carriere il fut nomme Agent pour
les Seigneur de D'Aillebout et
Atteint ? apres d'une maladie
qui l'? a ? sa demission
l'? dernier ? du ?
de l'education de ses enfants, il par
? pour Lowell avec sa famille, le 17
janvier dernier, esperant revenir
? ? dans sa paroisse. ? "Le Seigneur
decide autrement." disait il
dans les dernier jours de sa vie.
" Eh bien que sa sainte? volonte son
faite." Il montra une resignation
admirable en face de la mort, et il ? ? paisiblement dans le Seigneur.

Il laisse pour deplorer sa perte une
epouse cherie elle inconsolable et 14 
enfants ? 8 qui sont maries et 6 en ? age.

R. I. P.

Monday, January 02, 2012

Mappy Monday: 12 West Street, Lowell MA

Happy New Year, everyone!

I've had this little ancestor mapping project on the back burner for a while now. On the back burner I say, mainly because most of the buildings and or addresses that I'm looking for within Lowell don't exist any more. Ideally, I wanted to start with my first known Robillard ancestor to come to the city and map where he or she lived and then climb the ladder, but... that isn't working out too well. So, I guess I'll just go at it all willy nilly like... Who cares, anyway?

12 West St. was the address of the home that my Pepere Robillard and his family lived at in 1930. April 10th, 1930, to be exact. West St. is in Centralville, right off of Lakeview and runs all the way up to Colburn. According to the 1930 census, my Pepere, Joe, was 32 years old that year, as was my Memere, Louise (Wright). Pepere, who was naturalized in 1898, rented his home for $18.00 (is that per week?), and worked as a loomfixer in a silkmill. Memere was home with the kids. The kids, all 5 of them, were between the ages of 2 and half and 13 years. Uncle Jim was the oldest, Uncle Bob the youngest, and, I just have to mention this, Aunt Joan, well... She was on her way. As my Memere was abt 8 months pregnant at this time. What about Uncle Richard and my Dad, you ask? They weren't even a thought in 1930.  Pepere & Memere's neighbors were the Gilbride family at, what appears to be, 14 West St. and the Grotton (or is it Grafton) family at 10 West.

If you look at the map below, you'll see that I marked the current address location.  The house is a very modest one, maybe a starter home, or would you call it a cottage? I do believe the house that is there may be the same house that was there in 1930, although I'm not sure. I keep thinking about the flood of 36 and the more I do the more I doubt that this is the same house. What about the development of the VFW Highway? How did that change the landscape? Shit, I don't even know when it was put in, so I don't know. I tried to do a history of the address at the Middlesex North Registry of Deeds website to figure that out, but I was unsuccessful.

The house at the current address in the map below looks white, but I can tell you it's now 2 shades of a really ugly blue. Yes, I went and hunted it down, even took a few photographs early one weekday morning. Uhuh, that was me standing in the middle of your street with the camera. Can you say wackado?

I wonder how long my Pepere & Memere lived on West St, and if my Uncle Bob remembers it. I kinda doubt he does though, he was, after all, only 2 years old and I know my Pepere & Memere moved around a lot. I mean a lot, always following the work I was told... I could, I suppose, revisit the directories to find this out. Someday.

Anyway, I guess I'm going to try and go backwards from here (then forward again, think 1940 census). In 1920 my Pepere lived at 299 Moody, I doubt the actual building still exists and that the street has been renumbered many times? Do they do that? Renumber streets? Of course they do... I'll go see what I can find.

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