Tuesday, January 1, 2013

More Discoveries on the Family Tree

Hola darlings!  Happy New Year to all of you, and Goddess Blessings!  May 2013 be better for all of us than 2012.

Today was a domestic day.  It's cold as Hell out there, wind chills below zero (dropped like a rock yesterday from a balmy 34 degrees F during my morning walk to the bus stop yesterday to go to the office, to a very uncomfortable walk home last night in brisk winds and wind chills hovering around 5 degrees F, brrrrrrr!) 

I didn't venture out.  Instead, I've been been putzing around the greater part of the day.  First I touched up nicked furniture legs on my bedroom furniture; then I dusted the cold air returns and heat registers, then I re-framed various prints for my bedroom and worked on plans for finally refinishing the family room re-do.  Yes, it has been torn-apart since March of 2012!  In between times, I was working on the family tree.  I have been busy since Christmas Day (on and off) printing it out and adding updates, including printing out interesting stories about our venerable ancestors and cleaning-up lines of descent. 

Today I came across an ancestor who has sometimes been called "the Father of Wisconsin."  HOLY HATHOR!  Along the way, I also confirmed suspicions that developed early-on in my research a couple years ago that in my mostly French paternal side of the family on both sides of the Canadian-USA border, there is plenty of mixed French-Native American ancestry.  Of course, back then, borders were a much more fluid concept and the French traders and fur trappers who ventured far into the Great Lakes region didn't care that the land around La Baye (eventually became the city of Green Bay) was in territory that would eventually become the state of Wisconsin, or that Mackinaw/Mackinac was in territory that would eventually become the state of Michigan.  The French traders, trappers and soldiers garrisoned in Detroit and at Mackinac had much friendlier relations (for sure!) with the Native Americans than most of the Anglaise, who looked down their noses at the Native Americans as "savages."  Those Anglaise later on became known as the Yankees.  No wonder I hate those damn Yankees!

I digress, ahem.  Direct line of descent going back in time --numbers in brackets [--] are for convenience to denote generations:

[1] Me
[2] Dad, Francis John Newton (1922 - 2002)
[3] Ida Newton nee Belanger (1893 - 1962)
[4] Mathilde A. Belanger nee Forsyth/Forsythe (1861 - 1943)
(Before around this time, the French tradition that married women kept their "maiden" names held sway in settlements primarily French, before the Anglaise tradition of erasing a woman's prior identity after she got married took root.  I employ that naming tradition going back:)
[5] Theotiste Marie Susane Brunette (1824 - 1904)
[6] Domitelle Grignon (1787 - 1847)
[7] Louise Domitilde de Langlade (1759 - 1823), daughter of Charles Michel de Langlade (1729 - 1800, or 1801 or 1802) and Charlotte Ambroisine (Ambroisie) Bourassa (1735 - 1817)

It is [8] Charles Michel De Langlade who has been sometimes called "the Father of Wisconsin."  We have a county in Wisconsin named after us, har :)  It's true! 

Going back one more generation, to the parents of Charles Michel de Langlade, his father was [9] Augustin Mouet de Moras dit Langlade, a French trader from Quebec, and his mother was Domitilde, a Native American of the Ottawa people.  Domitilde's brother was Nissowaquet (spelled phonetically), who became a Chief of the Ottawa.  The French called him "La Fourche." 

When Charles was about 10 years old, his Uncle, Nissowaquet a/k/a La Fourche, had a dream of great significance.  He dreamt that young Charles would be fighting at his side when they conquered a distant enemy.  And thus, Charles was called forth from his family to go fight with La Fourche and his warriors.  Despite propaganda that indicates otherwise, the battle ended in a stalemate and a peace treaty was entered into between the two tribes.  Nonetheless, Charles was designated a hero from the battle, and this experience was to color his life for decades to come. 

Here is a Wikipedia entry about my venerable ancestor. Also noted at the Wisconsin Historical Society's website. And for further history on the subject of French and Indian marriages with information about the Langlades and the Grignon families, see The Founders of Green Bay: A Marriage of Indian and White. 

Okay, so my question is this:  With my family background, why aren't I now governor of Wisconsin???  Hmmm....

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