Saturday, August 15, 2009

Le Saint-Jean-Baptiste

A voyage across the ocean - The ship Le Saint-Jean-Baptiste captained by Pierre Guillebaud departed Dieppe on the end of June in 1671 with 120 girls. Yves Landry has listed 104 of the girls (Filles du roi) from the Paris area and in northern France.
Included in the passengers is our ancestor:
Catherine DUCHARME, de par. St-Benoît, rue des Poiriers, v. Paris, Île-de-France
Born 1637; daughter of Jean Ducharme & Anne LeLievre

On board was "The Passenger Sr Bouteillerie with two carpenters, two bricklayers, four labourers to clear land for up to 100 acres. The ship was also a hundred men, one hundred and twenty girls, fifty sheep and lamb, ten donkeys and their offspring, and draperies, blankets and much more for use of man. "

A normal crossing took two and a half months. They arrived in Montreal in August 1671.
Upon arrival the Filles du roi were entrusted to a woman, from France or the colony, who protected them and kept them under strict discipline until married where she would attend and sign as witness to the nuptial agreements.

Catherine married Pierre Roy on 12 Jan. 1672 in Montreal.

"The St-Jean Baptiste" was a 295-300 barrel vessel. The dimensions of a boat of 300 barrels would have been 76 feet in length, 27.33 feet in width and 10.5 feet in depth if using George Fournier’s method which he described in his book, Hydrographie, published in 1643. This type of boat was called a galleon and could be armed if needed.


On its return to Dieppe on 10 January 1672, the vessel brought back from Nouvelle-France beaver skins, moose, stone, wood, pitch, and other rare items.

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