20 May 2020   Click here to View this email in your browser 
Annual General Meeting


Date: Thursday, 11 June 2020
Time: 20:00 p.m. EDT
Where: Wherever you are! Connect with us through GoToWebinar.
Chairperson: Michael Laekas

Go to our Upcoming Webinars page on our website to register.

New Member Orientation


Date and Time: Monday, 8 June 2020 - 19:00 EDT

Presenter: Johanne Gervais

This webinar is scheduled for the second Monday of every month. Join us to help familiarize yourself with all the features of the eSociety including using the Resource Links, Members' Forum, and the PRDH, BMS2000, and Fichier Origine databases.

To register for this webinar, go to our Upcoming Webinars page on our Website.

RESEARCH, DNA AND SERENDIPITY: How I discovered who my ancestors really were


Date and Time: Wednesday, 17 June 2020 - 19:30 EDT

Presenter: Debbie Dee

Debbie Dee used to think that she had a good understanding of her family’s culture, history and ethnicity, until she started to research her family tree. She found out that her family’s information was mostly right about who they thought they were, but she also learned so much more about their heritage, including details that the family never knew about. She will talk about how traditional research got the ball rolling, DNA testing brought some new discoveries, and serendipity stepped in with some unexpected findings then literally delivered them to her doorstep.

Click here to register

Don't forget our Past Webinars page on our website has recorded webinars that you can view at your leisure. 

If you would like to share your genealogical interests or expertise in a webinar, please contact us. We are looking for speakers for our 2020 webinar series.
Members' Forum
Looking for help in breaking down your brick walls?

Don't forget to list your brick wall on our
 Members' Forum page on our website.
Resource Links
General Resource Links

Our General Resource Links section on our website consists of resource links that do not fit in one of Quebec’s 17 administrative regions. This section includes resources to help you with your research on Acadians, Quebec adoptees, your ancestors in France, Métis, Quebec land records, Quebec military records, Quebec cemetery transcriptions, New France census records and much more.

To access this superb set of Quebec resources, on our website click on the Resources main menu then click on the Resource Links sub-menu. Scroll to the very bottom and click on the General Resource Links tab.

The following links have recently been added to our General Resource Links section of our website:

Acadian Genealogy

Plenty of free information on this website including a list of surnames and families. Clicking on a surname or a family will provide further genealogical data.


Huguenots of France and Elsewhere
  • This website includes several regions in France that you could click on. You could then select various links related to Huguenots in that region, including an alphabetical list of names.
The National Huguenot Society
  • This website has plenty of educational material on the Huguenots as well as other resources to help you research your Huguenot ancestors.

Our Huguenot Ancestors
  • Michel Barbeau has a series of presentation slides that explain the important role the Huguenots played in the discovery and colonization of America.


The military of New France consisted of a mix of regular soldiers from the French Army (Carignan-Salières Regiment) and French Navy (Troupes de la marine and Compagnies Franches de la Marine) supported by small local volunteer militia units. Most early troops were sent from France, but localization after the growth of the colony meant that, by the 1690s, many were volunteers from the settlers of New France, and by the 1750s most troops were descendants of the original French inhabitants. 

Compagnies franches de la Marine 1750-1760

The Compagnies Franches de la Marine (previously known as Troupes de la marine, and later renamed and reorganized as the Troupes de Marine) were an ensemble of autonomous infantry units attached to the French Royal Navy bound to serve both on land and sea. These troops constituted the principal military force of France capable of intervening in actions and holding garrisons overseas from 1690 to 1761. In New France, these were the only regular soldiers stationed by the Crown from 1685 to 1755; that year several army battalions were dispatched to North America during the Seven Years' War between France and Great Britain.
  • The Compagnies Franches de la Marine database has been added to our website. 
  • To look for a soldier you could search by: Surname or nickname, First name, Status (soldier, rank, etc.), Company, Place of origin, or Spouse's surname

Meuron Regiment

Four companies of the Meuron Regiment took part in the siege of Plattsburg in 1814. These troops were also present at the battle on Lake Champlain, which ended in a defeat for the English army. The Régiment de Meuron withdrew to Chambly, then went to winter in Montreal. The soldiers were dismissed on July 26, 1816.

This regiment is said to have left about 504 men in Canada, to whom the government would have offered land to settle there. Many nationalities are represented in the regiment: Swiss, French, Italian, German, Belgian, British, Austrian, Spanish, Russian, Hungarian, etc. A few of them chose to marry and settle in the Chambly, Quebec area, including Antime (Antoine) Forti and Pietro (Pierre) Tenaglio, Italians by birth. There was also the innkeeper Paul Milliard and the tailor François Arnould and others who left descendants.

Ninety of these demobilized soldiers enlisted as militiamen in 1816-1817 joining the Scotsman Lord Selkirk for his expedition to the Red River Colony. In St. Boniface, Manitoba, a de Meuron Street honours this regiment.

Two database links have been added to the General Resource Section of our website:

1. List of soldiers and officers of the Meuron Regiment who came to defend Lower Canada in 1813 against the American invasion
  • This database has an alphabetical list of soldiers, including the origin of the soldier

2. The Meuron Regiment
  • The Société d'histoire de la seigneurie de Chambly created a list of officers and soldiers who married or settled in the Chambly area.

We will continue with the General Resource Links section in our next eNewsletter

If you have found an interesting resource link that is not on our website, please let us know and we will add it.
Contact us
Did You Know?

BAnQ Archives
Finding Aid


Did you know we now have a BAnQ Finding Aid on the Databases page of our website? 

The website of the Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec/Library and National Archives of Quebec (BAnQ) has a tremendous amount of genealogical information free for everyone to access; however, their website can sometimes be confusing and difficult to navigate.

To help you with your research, this Finding Aid lists all the BAnQ database links related to genealogy, including births, marriages, burials, coroners’ investigations, notarial documents, guardianships and much more. Since most of the BAnQ database search screens are in French, this Finding Aid also provides you with the English translations of the database name and its search criteria.

We realize improvements are ongoing with the BAnQ’s website, including links to genealogy related databases. If you find a link that is no longer working or an interesting link not included on the Finding Aid, please let us know and we will update the Finding Aid..

To access the Finding Aid, click on the Resources main menu tab of our website, then click on the Databases sub-menu. Click on the BAnQ Archives icon and the Finding Aid will appear.

Below is an example of what you can expect to see in this 14-page Finding Aid:

In the News

7 Journal Ideas to Help You Record Your Story 

FamilySearch Blog
May 12, 2020  - by  Sally Odekirk


We live in momentous times! As we experience what life brings, keeping a record of our activities and current events will help us, as well as our descendants, understand our experiences. These days, the ways to keep a journal have increased dramatically. Consider some of the following journal ideas, and try one for yourself!

1. Paper Journals—A Conventional Method

If you prefer a more traditional journaling experience, use a regular journal or notebook to write down your story. Even if you write just one or two sentences at a time, your contributions will make a difference to your ancestors and to your personal well-being.

You could also include calendars, to-do lists, newspaper clippings, and snippets from letters and emails to add interest—almost like a scrapbook! Keep mementos from special occasions, such as tickets from concerts or plays. Not only will these mementos make your journal vibrant, but the artifacts along with a few sentences about the event will keep your memories fresh!

2. Digital Journaling: A Journal on the Go

A journal doesn’t just have to be pen and paper—thanks to mobile devices, your journal can always be in in your pocket. One advantage of keeping a digital journal is that you can journal on the go, chronicling events as they happen using either your cell phone or laptop.

Digital journaling can be as simple as opening a document and writing your thoughts. Consider adding lists, lessons learned, goals, and photos to make your journal come to life. You can also make specialized journals that focus on one topic, such as a gratitude journal or a travel journal.

Be sure to back up and save your files regularly and print them occasionally. These steps will prevent your journal from being lost.

Digital journal apps are available that allow you to add weather and location information, recordings, videos, and other features. Try using goal tracking apps, blogs, and social media accounts to keep a record of your life. Be creative and have fun; the possibilities of making a digital journal unique to you are endless.

3. Geo-Journaling: Where Do You Go, and What Do You Like to Do?

Studies show that the rising generation often relates more to experiences than they do to physical items. If you like to hike, bike, walk, or jog, try recording your experiences. Keeping a geo-journal is a journal idea that will keep you active and help you preserve treasured memories!

Experts believe that tracking these events and leaving them behind for future generations to recreate enables you to create a stronger bond than would come from someone simply reading your words.

As your family members go to the same places you went, read your words, and see your photos, they will have a powerful connection with you that can’t be had in any other way. You can share these activities on social media apps you are already using in a way that encourages others to go and do what you did. You might even consider retracing your ancestors’ travels and writing about your experiences.

4. Photo Journals: A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

There are dozens of ways to keep a photo journal—and, as always, the best way is the way that works for you! Using a traditional photo album is one method; creating a printed photo book is another. You can also make a digital photo journal by making online albums! The best part? Everything you need is on your phone.

Digital photography makes it easy to keep track of when and where a photo was taken. You can also add a sentence or two to explain the story behind it.

5. Doodle Journals: Combining Words and Drawings

If you enjoy drawing, why not use your doodles as a form of journal keeping? Becky Christensen, a mother and grandmother who teaches school in Japan, enjoys keeping her family up to date with her adventures through her doodle journal.

Sketch important things that happened throughout the day, make little comics of events that happened, or just draw out your thoughts. Whatever you do, make your journal personal and unique to you!

6. Online Journaling Logs: The Possibilities Are Endless

A journal doesn’t necessarily need to use written words. There are dozens of other ways to capture your memories, many of which are made free and easily accessible through the internet. Try making a private Pinterest board or a YouTube playlist that captures small moments in your life.

Don’t be afraid to record the silly things, such as memes or family jokes! Although they may not seem profound, they are important parts of your life that capture your personality, your interests, and a slice of what the world was like during your life!

7. Ancestors’ Journals: Catching a Glimpse of the Past

Do you have an ancestor’s journal in your possession? Read it and find yourself transported back in time. Then learn about the period when it was written to help you understand the context of what was happening. You might just get some journal ideas from the experiences your ancestors share!

Consider digitizing your ancestors’ journals and adding them to FamilySearch Memories to preserve them and to share them with relatives.

However you decide to keep a journal, the important thing is that you record your experiences. Oprah Winfrey once wrote, “Keeping a journal will change your life in ways that you’d never imagine.” Try one of these journal ideas for yourself and for those who come after you.

How a Family Crest or Coat of Arms Leads to Family Discover
FamilySearch Blog
May 7, 2020  - by  Alison Ensign


Family crests and coats of arms are powerful family symbols passed down through generations. They were commonly used throughout the 11–17th centuries, and they can still be meaningful reminders for families past, present, and future.

The symbolism in the design of a family crest or coat of arms can tell you about your ancestors’ achievements and status in society—a real testament to a family’s legacy. Here’s everything you need to know to understand, find, or create your family’s coat of arms. 

What Is Heraldry?

Heraldry is a system used to design, display, and record coats of arms and family crests. These symbols were often used to differentiate knights in tournaments—picture the brightly emblazoned shields carried by medieval knights in shining armor. But heraldry was used for more than just tournaments. It allowed people to recognize opposing sides on battlefields, family lineages, alliances, and more.

Today, heraldry is still used by some individuals, companies, and cities to display their heritage and achievements. In modern uses, it can also be used to portray family values and ambitions.

What Is a Coat of Arms?

A coat of arms is a symbol used to identify families or individuals. It is a detailed design that often includes a shield, crest, helmet, motto, and more. The image could be used as a whole, or the crest can be used as a simplified symbol.

Going back to the medieval knight, remember the brightly emblazoned shield? The design on the knight’s shield was often the knight’s coat of arms. 

Coats of arms can help you learn a lot about your ancestry. They were intended to recognize achievements and family heritage, so the design can provide insight into your family’s legacy. They’re also passed down through generations and carry the history of the family with them.

What Is a Family Crest?

In a full coat of arms, the crest literally crests the design—that is to say that it is often located at the top of the image. The family crest is a smaller part of the design that can be used on its own when the entire coat of arms is too complex. Once again going back to the knight in shining armor, the crest may have been attached to the knight’s helmet.

Common family crests include a lion, cross, tiger, or horse, but there are many others out there. Some even use unicorns or monsters. Sounds like a fun conversation starter if you’re lucky enough to have one of them in your family tree!

Alternatively, the term family crest can refer to the overall design. Over time, family crest became interchangeable with coat of arms, but the distinction is still important to understand, particularly if you’re searching for your family crest.

How to Find Your Coat of Arms

If you have European heritage, you may have a coat of arms or family crest. Unfortunately, they’re rarer than you might think. Most commonly, only nobility or high-class families in medieval Europe had them because they were granted by kings to recognize achievements.

That rarity just makes it all the more exciting if you find one in your family tree! Search for coats of arms associated with your last name using 4crestsHouse of NamesAll Family Crests, or other resources. If you find one, trace your family tree to find out if you can find a link or reference to the coat of arms. While you’re at it, take the opportunity to discover more about your heritage.

Some families choose to adopt a coat of arms based only on a last name without an ancestral link, but this practice can hinder the significance and meaning behind the coat of arms. This guide can help you find out if a crest is associated with your family. An alternative is to create one that is unique and meaningful to your family!

How to Design a Coat of Arms

Designing your own coat of arms can be fun and insightful. Think about your family’s achievements and how you can incorporate them into your design. If you’re looking for inspiration, explore the stories your relatives have shared on FamilySearch Memories.

Parts of a Coat of Arms 

A coat of arms can be very detailed, and it often includes many elements. Although not every coat of arms has every piece, the following parts are often incorporated in the design.

Shield: The shield is the center of the design; it is the only necessary piece when designing a coat of arms.

Crest: This symbolic object sits atop of the coat of arms.

Helm: A helmet rests below the crest but above the shield. It reflects the origins of heraldry. A crown could replace or accompany the helmet. 

Wreath: The wreath is a rope or twisted cloth, a literal representation of the silk or rope used to tie a crest to a knight’s helmet.

Mantling: The mantling is a piece of cloth that flows out from the helmet. Originally, the cloth protected a knight’s armor.

Supporters: A pair of people or animals stand on either side of the shield and support it. They’re typically a local or hereditary figure, and they were traditionally used for nobility.

Compartment: The compartment is a base design (usually a landscape) on which the shield and supporters rest.

Motto: The motto is a saying displayed on a ribbon either below or above the rest of the design.


These resources explain meanings behind different items and colors you can use in your family crest and coat of arms. Remember that the family crest can be used on its own, so choose something significant to you!

Of course, if you’re making your own, the most important thing is that it is meaningful to you and your family. Work together to include elements that speak to you personally and your heritage.

Regardless of whether you find a family crest that has been around for generations or you create a coat of arms yourself, crests and coats of arms are powerful symbols that can unify a family. How do you plan to use yours moving forward? Record the image and the meaning behind it to keep the memory alive in your family.

All of our archived newsletters are located on our website under the About Us main menu tab.

We want to hear from you, contact us with your suggestions for future newsletters.
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