During his first decade in Canada, Louis did not marry. While his friend Adrien Sénécal was growing a family, Louis remained single, paying (one presumes) the bachelor tax. In the early 1670s, Louis moved from one settlement to another, but, by the end of the decade, he had become an habitant in Varennes where he would spend the rest of his life.
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There was never any talk of money in our household. Never.
We had a roof over our heads. We had clothes. And we had enough to eat. And there were never any childhood requests for the “trinkets of youth”.
We weren’t poor. And weren’t rich. Let’s say: “It was just right.”
Excerpted from Business Boy to Business Man, by Robert Verreault (with Denis Ledoux).
On October 29, 1929, the stock market crashed. Of course, I didn’t know that, as I was only six. Soon though, my parents, although they didn’t have stocks to crash, were beginning to feel the effect. By 1930, everyone was slipping into the Depression.
The “daughters of the king” were introduced to prospective husbands at the Ursuline convent in the Upper Town of Québec
My suitcase was packed and ready for our trip to Syracuse, NY, the day after the wedding ceremony because Albert would have to report to base Monday night. That trip would be the only honeymoon we would have because we were having a World War 2 wedding!
Among the eight filles du roi aboard the Marie-Thérèse who were coming to find husbands was a woman from Normandy, Marthe Quittel, a Protestant from Rouen.
We had already witnessed the demolition derby over the snowy weekend between Christmas and New Year’s. We figured the upcoming motorcycle party couldn’t top that. The demolition derby started with the arrival of large trucks bearing strange cargo.
Gunnar was mowing his field. This was odd. He never mowed his field. He was making ever-tightening circles around the knobby acre, the sweet grass and raggedy weeds falling in neat windrows behind him.
When I was ten, I ran away. I packed everything that was important into my sturdy cardboard suitcase. I left a note on the kitchen table warning my parents not to look for me at the high-tension wires, those metal electrical towers that marked the back border of our property and which were in fact my destination.
Life during the war went on as usual, in some ways. I enjoyed working at Benoit’s Clothing Store. I liked dressing up to go to work. We were always meeting …