Sunday, 29 June 2014

52 Ancestors: Hilaire Pitre (1817/8-1902) Farmer, Carpenter and Store Merchant

Hilaire Pitre is my Great Great Grandfather. He is the father of Victor Pitre.

Hilaire was the 6th child of Jean Baptiste Pitre and Marie Hache. He was baptized April 6, 1818 in the Ste. Famille parish, Nipisiguit (Bathurst), New Brunswick. This was the first time the missionary priest had visited since November 1817 and was one of many children baptized that day. The only time that Hilaire's actual birthday is recorded anywhere is on the 1901 census, it is listed as Jan 8, 1817. It is unlikely that the year of his birth is 1817 since it would have been unusual for a family to wait a year to have their child baptized if they had the opportunity to do so sooner. However, the ages listed for Hilaire on most census records do match with an 1817 birth year. He at least believed that he was born in 1817!

Hilaire married Tarsille (Teresa?) Boudreau on September 1, 1835 in the St. Polycarpe parish in Petit Rocher, New Brunswick. They settled in Beresford, New Brunswick, which is about halfway between Bathurst and Petit Rocher. It is here that Hilaire raised his family of 10 (5 boys and 5 girls) working as a farmer, carpenter and finally as a general store merchant. Hilaire must have worked until the day he died as he is listed as a general store merchant on the 1901 census at the age of 84. As his family married and started families of their own they did not move far away. In 1901, Hilaire was living surrounded by 1 daughter, 3 sons and 20 grandchildren! It must have been wonderful to have his family so close by. Hilaire deeded his land to 4 of his 5 sons (one must have died), I wonder if some of this land is still within the family.

Hilaire died about 2 months after his wife on October 24, 1902 in Petit Rocher, New Brunswick at the age of 84/85, no cause of death listed. Was it old age or a broken heart at the loss of his wife?

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