Early History of Montreal

Sep 14, 1535 – Jacques Cartier first arrives in Quebec City – the Iroquoian capital of Stadacona. [He had sailed to Canadian Atlantic Provinced, Gulf of St Lawrence and Chaleur Bay the year before in 1534 thinking that he had reached the Asian coast. ]

Oct 2, 1535 – Jacques Cartier firsts arrives in Hochelaga (Montreal) on the smallest of the three ships of his fleet. At Hochela he climbs Mont-Royal the next day. He was stopped from proceeding further by the rapids, which were thought to be the passage to China and thats why they were named Lachine Rapids.  Cartier, though, was one of the first to formally acknowledge that the New World was a separate land mass from Europe/Asia.

Jul 3, 1608 was when the first  permanent European settlement was established in Canada by Samuel Champlain in Quebec City.  He had previously participated in the settlment of Port Royal, Acadia in 1605.

Jun 1641, Maisonneuve and Jeanne Mance, with three other women and about fifty men, set sail to Canada and arrive in Quebec by end of August.  The intent was to set up a mission in Montreal. 

Jan 1, 1642 – There are 7 inhabitants in Montreal, 107 years after Jacques Cartier first landed there.

May 5, 1642 – Paul de Chomdey de Maisonneuve leaves Quebec for Montreal, he and 50 others founded the post of Ville-Marie (Montreal).  On May 18, the first mass in Ville Marie was celebrated by Barthelemy Vimont, the superior of the Jesuits, with both French and Indians present.

Jun 9, 1643 – The Iroquois kill their first victims in Montreal. Forty Iroquis warriors suprise six frenchmen hewing timber within a gun shot of the fort, the Iroquis kill three of them and take the remaining three as prisoners.  For the next two years, the Iroquis continue to harass Montreal with attacks on March 16, 1644, and March 30th.    At this time, the inhabitants of Ville Marie were living for the most part communally in barracks within the fort, with only a few living on their own private means.

Jan 12, 1644  – Jeanne Mance opens the first hospital in Montreal within the fort.

In 1645,  Maisonneuve granted the first concession outside the fort to Jeanne Mance so that she could build Hotel Dieu de Montreal.

1646 – The Palisade of Fort Ville Marie was complete, after started in 1642.

Feb 27, 1647 – the first ball in Montreal.

Aug 1647 –  Louis Loisel first arrived in Montreal on Maisonneuve‘s second recruitment trip to France. Marguerite Charlot was on the same ship.   At that time, the situation in the colonies was becoming quite dangerous with the Agniers and the Iroquois, limiting movement outside the fort – not even able to go to collect firewood without armed guards.

Jan 4, 1648 – Pierre Gadois is awarded by Chomedey, then governor of the colony, the first land grant  outside  the fort and is the first farmer. But in 1645 his house is broken into on several occasions to steal food and he returns to Quebec city from 1646-1647.   [A map of the early land grants in Montreal are provided here.  My Louis Loisel got his first land grant in 1655.]

Jan 13, 1648 – Louis Loisel and Marguerite Charlot are married at the home of Jeanne Mance, with Paul de Chomedey, Gilbert Barbier and Charles le Moyne in attendence.

Nov 24, 1648 – Barbe Meusnier, daughter of Mathurin Meusnier and Francoise Fafart, is the first white child born  in Montreal -she died shortly thereafter [Dec 3, 1648].

Jul 24, 1649 – Jeanne Loiselle is born, she is the first white child born in Montreal to grow to school age and adult hood.

Jan 1, 1650 – Montreal has 196 inhabitants.  That is the year that Michel Chauvin is accused of bigamy.

1650 – Father Claude Pijart is appointed to Montreal, coming from Ste-Marie among the Algonquins.  He will later baptise Francoise and Joseph Loiselle.

1650 – Maisonneuve builds a house for himself of Rue Saint-Paul. Between 1650 and 1672, 94 houses were built in Montreal. Louis Loisel’s house being #51 on map of Montreal on 1672.

Jun 18, 1651 – Montreal battles 50 Iroquois and in July 26, 1651 – Iroquois attack the hospital.  

The start of the 1650s, Ville-Marie (Montreal) was in danger. The settlement was under constant attack by the Iroquois and there were only a few dozen men left to defend the colony. Some of the first to arrive here became discouraged and returned to France, their homeland. 1651 was a particularly difficult year. No one dared go out unarmed and no month went by without victims. Jeanne Mance had to abandon the Hôtel-Dieu and take refuge, like many others, in the Ville-Marie fort.

Feb 26, 1652 – Francoise Loiselle is born. She was baptised by Claude Pijart, her godparents were Lambert Closse and Francoise Gode

April 16, 1652 – “Le Cid” is performed in Montreal. Kind of fun to imagine Louis Loisel and Marguerite Charlot watching the play – although their second daughter Francoise is just about two months old at the time – would Marguerite have gone to the play?

Sep 22, 1653 – 100 soldiers arrive to defend Montreal against the Iroquois. They were recruited by Jeanne Mance, who used the money that was to be spent on the hospital, the Grande Recrue.

Nov 25, 1654 – Joseph Loisel is born, baptised by Father Claude Pijart.   The godparents were Paul de Chomedey, now governor,  and Jeanne Mance.

1655 – A treaty with the Iroquois is signed.

1655 – Louis Loisel is awarded his first land grant in Montreal. Louis Loisel’s house being #51 [on rue Saint-Paul] on map of Montreal on 1672. He earned his living as a locks smith.

1657 0- Notre Dame du Bonsecours is build in Montreal

Sep 3, 1657 – L’Abbee de Queylus is the first priest in Montreal, replacing Father Claude Pijart that baptised the Jeanne and Francois Loiselle.

Nov 25, 1657 – Marguerite Bourgeois opens the stable school in Montreal. Jeanne and Francoise Loiselle are two of the first seven first students.

Jun 2, 1658 – Charles Loiselle  is born. He dies less than a month later.

1658 –  Maisonneuve contracts Jacques Archambault to dig a well it the Fort Ville-Marie

Feb 6, 1662- Lambert Closse died fighing the Iroquois.

Aug 30, 1663 – Barbe Loiselle is born in Ville Marie – the day before the eclipse of the sun in New France. At the start of the year, there were 2,000 inhabitants of the town.  That was also the year of the Earthquake in Montreal. The earthquake last more than 6 months from February 5th to the month of September.

1666 – another Census is completed.

1666 – The boys school is opened in Montreal.  The boys of the colony at that time, were attending Marguerite Bourgeois’s school with the girls. Did Joseph Loiselle attend, he would have been abut 10 at that time?

1669 – Louis XIV institutes mandatory military service for all valide men of NewFrance between ages 16 and 60 with each parish having its militia.  Which is just at Joseph Loiselle turns 16.

1670 – the first map demonstrating that the Great Lakes were all connected, the year that the Hudson’s Bay Company is founded. 

1674 – Pointe-aux-Trembles is founded.  Laurent Archambault and Francois Bau were elected churchwarded for the construction of the church in Pointe-aux-Trembles.

1679 – The Brigantine Le Griffon, is towed to the southern end of Niagara River to become the first ship to sail the Upper Great Lakes.

1680-1685 – More and more voyageurs, coureurs des bois and missionaries exploring the regions upriver from Montreal toward the Great Lakes, impacting the fur fairs in Montreal.

In the Montreal census of 1681, Louis Loisel, locksmith, 64 years old, and Marguerite Charlot, 57 years old, had as neighbors Jean-Vincent Philippe, Sieur de Hautmesny, and Charles d’Ailleboust, Sieur des Mousseaux. Louis and Marguerite owned 1 gun, 2 head of cattle, and had 30 arpents under cultivation. A single son, Joseph, still lived with them.

Dec 9, 1681, Joseph Loisel bought land in Saint-Jean (later Pointe-aux-Trembles) from Francois Bau and his wife.

On 26 May 1682, Paul Aguenier was ordered to pay the damages that his animals had caused to the grains of Louis Loisel

1682 – Rene Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle, travelled all the way to the mouth of the Mississippi River. 

8 August 1684,  Loisel won his case against Marthe Autreux, wife of Pierre Chauvin, who had killed one of the plaintiff’s pigs after having surprised the animal in the act of ransacking his fields

18 June 1686, Loisel was ordered to do so because he had refused to ‘have thrashed les fredoches, which spoiled a homestead”.

On 2 August 1688, Louis Loisel (engageur ouest) with some partners, Antoine Bazinet, Jacques Chaperon, Pierre Janot and Robert Janot all invested in a trading journey to the West.  Bazinet, Chaperon and Janot would make the trading journey and return in the autumn of 1689 in order to pay the creditors in good beaver pelts and to share the profits.

3 March 1690, Louis Loisel liquidated all his property in Montreal with his daughter Barbe Loisel and her husband Frncois Langantier taking charge of supporting her parents.

Sep 4, 1691 – Louis Loisel, our Canadian ancester, dies in Montreal.

1692, Joseph Loiselle was engageur ouest, like his father Louis Loisel earlier in 1688.

Oct 3, 1706 – Margureite Charlot dies at Pointe-aux-Trembles , 15 years after her husband.


3 Responses to “Early History of Montreal”

  1. Andrea Hodges Says:

    I find it absolutely fascinating you have traced your family beginnings in Montreal (where I was born) to as early as 1535!
    I find Geanology fascinating, but I wouldn’t know where to start! I guess I should go and have a look at ancestry.com.
    Congratulations on your informative and amazing blog. I have a weight loss blog – I think by this time I have lost close to 50 pounds since March 4. You can find it at http://andrea-hodges.blogspot.com/ Have a look if that is of interest to you.
    In the meantime, I have been mentioning your film project (Tall Ships) to a couple of videographers to find a great fit for you.
    Get out there and enjoy today’s SUNSHINE!!!

  2. Marguerite Lord Loiselle l Says:

    Its truly wright That my husand truth story OF THE lOISELLE FAMELY
    SO MY CHILDREN will know.
    I been doing genealogie for about 80 years,

    Marguerite Lord Loiselle

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