Archiver > ACADIAN-CAJUN > 2001-03 > 0984254095

Subject: Re: Rene Landry Lines
Date: Sat, 10 Mar 2001 14:54:55 EST

In a message dated 3/10/01 10:05:13 AM Central Standard Time,

A couple of questions . . . were Rene Landry l'aine and Rene Landry Le Jeune
related??? Did Rene (l'aine) marry Perrine Bourg? And - what year were both
Rene's born and are parents known for either of them???


I am sending you what I have on this controversy.
Don Landry


According Stephen A. White, genealogist at the University of Moncton's
Centre d'Etudes Acadiennes in Moncton New Brunswick, "regarding the origin
and the parents of the two rené Landrys, there is probably no other Acadian
family about whose background there has been so much speculation and wishful
thinking. The result is that what we actually know about the Landry families
who immigrated from France to Acadia, has come to be regrettably enshrouded
in a dense fog of error and confusion.

Four individuals named Landry, who were born in France, appear in the
Acadian censuses of 1671, 1678, 1686, and 1693. Two of these were men, both
named René, and two were women, named Perrine and Antoinette. Many
researchers have presumed that these four Landrys were all closely related,
but such is not the case. In fact, while it is possible to prove that
Antoinette Landry was the sister of one of the Renés and permissible to
believe that Perrine Landry was his sister as well. But after a study of the
dispensations granted upon the marriages of the descendants of the Landrys,
it appears that the first two René Landrys in Acadia could not have bee been
any more nearly related to the other René Landry than as cousins in the
second or third degree.

The proofs to which I have just alluded repose in the presence or absence
of dispensations for consanguinity in the records of the marriages of the
descendants of the Landrys. As you may know, until the first world war, the
Catholic Church required dispensations of relationships, whether by blood or
by marriage, as remote as the fourth degree, that is as distant as those
between third cousins, or persons whose great-grandparents included siblings.
In the case of Antoinette Landry and the elder René Landry, we find, for
example, that when Antoinette's great-grandson Francois Brun married the
elder René's great-granddaughter Madeleine Dupuis, October 24, 1735, at Port
Royal, there was a dispensation granted the young couple for the fourth
degree consanguinity. I can refer you to at least eight more marriage records
in which like dispensations are marked down, all involving
great-grandchildren of Antoinette Landry, who wed great grandchildren of the
elder René Landry. Two among these eight are mentioned in an article on the
Landrys that the late Father Patrice Gallant published in the Cahiers de la
Societe historique acadienne in 1972 (Vol. IV, pp. 271-273), Unfortunately,
Father Gallant confused the question of the relationships among the Landrys,
despite his good intentions, by misidentifying the parents of Madeleine
Dupuis' parents, Jean Dupuis and Anne Richard. He confounded and Anne with
another couple, Jean Dupuis and Marguerite Richard, who were the other Jean's
nephew and Ann's first cousin. By chance, both Dupuis couples descended from
Landrys, while the Jean Dupuis who married Marguerite Richard was a grandson
of the younger René Landry.

Father Gallant thus got the two Rene Landrys mixed up, which gave him the
impression that both René Landrys were Antoinette Landry's brothers, and thus
brothers one to the other. As you can see, however, the dispensations to
which Father Gallant referred to, when properly worked out, only have the
potential to connect the elder René Landry to Antoinette.

As both Antoinette Landry and the elder René Landry married Bourgs, it
would appear that one could explain the relationship between their respective
descendants equally well by supposing that Antoine Bourg and Perrine Bourg
were siblings. Fortunately, there is an easy way to resolve this apparent
dilemma. Perrine Bourg had first married Simon Pelleret, and their two
daughters had numerous descendants, at least seven of whom married
descendants of Antoine Bourg who would have been their third cousins, if
Perrine and Antoine had in fact been sister and brother. Not one of the
records of these seven marriages includes a dispensation for any degree of
consanguinity whatsoever. The possibility that Perrine and Antoine were
siblings can thus be eliminated, leaving only the possibility, which may
thereby be considered amply proved, that Antoinette Landry was a sister to
the elder René Landry.

The widow Perrine Landry, who had married Jacques Joffriau but is not
known to have had any children, is listed in the censuses of 1671 and 1678 as
residing beside or with Laurent Granger and Marie Landry. As Marie Landry
was the daughter of the elder René Landry, it may be supposed that Perrine
was very nearly related to him too. Given that Perrine was sixty years old in
1671, when the elder René Landry was himself fifty-three, it seems quite
likely that Perrine was this René's sister.

On the other hand, your ancestor, the younger René Landry, was not nearly
related to any of these other Landrys. We can be sure of this from the
absence of dispensations in the records of the marriages of his descendants
to descendants of either the elder René Landry or Antoinette Landry. The
younger Rene's grandson Germain Dupuis, for example, married the elder Rene's
granddaughter Marie Granger, November 3, 1717, at Grand-Pré, without any
dispensation for kindred. Had the two Renés been even first cousins, there
would have had to have been a dispensation for consanguinity in the fourth
degree in this record. Regarding Antoinette Landry and the younger René, I
would point out the absence of dispensations in the marriages of Joseph
Landry and Marie-Joseph Bourg, Jan 11, 1745 at Grand Pré, of François Landry
and Dorothée Bourg, November 21, 1731, at Grand Pré and of Jean Daigre and
Madeleine Landry, November 6, 1721 at Grand Pré. In all three of these
instances the Landrys were grandchildren of the younger René, and their three
spouses were all great-grandchildren of Antoinette Landry. We can thus rule
out any possibility of the younger René being the brother, or even the nephew
of Antoinette.

And about the mysterious "Jean-Claude Landry", Stephen A. White,
Genealogist, Centre d'etudes Acadiennes writes: "What can I tell you about
"Jean-Claude Landry" that I have not already said? Not much, I can assure
you. No one has brought forward any new information to show that two
different census takers, at two separate times, both forgot to put the name
Landry in the entries pertaining to the widow Marie Salé. No one has
discovered a cache of passenger lists for any of the vessels mentioned by
Father Lanctot to show, as he maintains, that "Jean-Claude Landry" arrived in
Acadia on a certain date, at the head of a group of a specific number of
family members, In these circumstances, serious researchers must agree that
nothing supports the contention that there ever was a "Jean-Claude Landry" in
early Acadia." "No one really knows how the Landrys came to Acadia, how many
of them came together, if indeed they did come in a group, or if and how they
were related, beyond the simple fact that Rene Landry l'aine and Antoinette
Landry were brother and sister. We certainly have no documentation to show
that Rene and Antoinette were twins! Even though Rene and Antoinette are said
to have both been fifty-three years old in the 1671 census, no experienced
genealogist would read that as meaning that they necessarily born at the same
time, because such records are rarely strictly accurate. After all, fifteen
years later, in 1686. Antoinette is said to have been eighty! And by 1693 she
had regressed to seventy-six. Such records are merely guides; they do not
admit strict interpretation. To go further, without additional proofs, is to
indulge in the creation of romantic fiction". "It is most regrettable that
Father Lanctot chose to present his account of the history of our early
Acadian families as though all of his points were based on documented facts.
And it is reprehensible that a publisher saw fit to distribute such an
admixture of truth and fantasy, as though it were serious history. The result
is particularly invidious insofar as those people who have little or no means
to consult the original records are concerned. They are left to suppose that
Lanctot's work is a reliable piece of research, where as it is in fact
treacherously misleading, because there are some extremely good information
mixed in with the bad."

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