French names in the 1833 NB Census of Madawaska

Last or family names | First names
One of the challenges of using censuses to find people in Madawaska, where the vast majority of people were French-speaking, is the spelling of the names. This is a problem in the 1833 NB Census of Madawaska because the census taker was a native English-speakers who was not familiar with the correct spelling of many of the French names; since many of the people were not literate, he had to guess at the spelling.

Another thing to keep in mind is that in 1833 there was no single, standardized way to spell many names, so even if people could read and write they may have spelled their name differently from others with the same name.

This is only a guide to deciphering the names. For those names for which I have definite information, I have included the correct spellings of the names in italics and brackets [..] right under the name.

This page is meant to be a guide, that is, to suggest possible ways that some common names were spelled; and to suggest possible correct spellings for some of the more common names found in the census to help point you in a direction for further research. Before you assume that the equivalents given here are correct for a specific individual, you should find other evidence for that spelling of his/her name.

If you have any other examples, or know specific names in the census, please . Thanks.

Please note: This is only a guide. You should always check other sources to confirm the actual spelling of names.

Last or Family names

Please note: This is only a guide. You should always check other sources to confirm the actual spelling of names.

"Real names" ---> 1833 census version

Belzile = Belselle

Chamberland = Chambalaine

Comeau = Como

Cyr = Cir, Crock

Daigle = Deagle

Dionne = Yon

Dominique dit Rau = DeRoe

Dubé = DeBay

Fournier = Fourgner, Fourgnier

Gagnon = Gagione, Gagion, Gagnion

Mazerolle = Muzoroll, Muzorole

Michaud = Micheod, Michoed, Misheau

Moreau = Morrow

Ouellet = Oulette, Ouillette

Nadeau = Naddeau, Neddeau, Nedo

Pelletier = Piltier, Peltier

Ringuette = Ranket

Sansfaçon = Sonfasson

Saucier = Sorsier

Sirois =Cirois

Soucy = Soucis

Tardif = Tardy

Thériault = Terrio

Thibedeau = Thibbadoe, Tibbado, Tibido

Vaillancourt = Viancour

1833 census version ---> "real names"

Belselle = Belzile

Chambalaine = Chamberland

Cir = Cyr

Cirois = Sirois

Como = Comeau

Crock = Cyr

Deagle = Daigle

DeBay = Dubé

DeRoe = Dominique dit Rau

Fourgner, Fourgnier = Fournier

Gagione, Gagion, Gagnion = Gagnon

Micheod, Michoed, Misheau = Michaud

Morrow = Moreau

Muzoroll, Muzorole = Mazerolle

Naddeau, Neddeau, Nedo = Nadeau

Oulette, Ouillette - Ouellet

Piltier, Peltier = Pelletier

Ranket = Ringuette

Sonfasson = Sansfaçon

Sorsier = Saucier

Soucis = Soucy

Tardy = Tardif

Terrio = Thériault

Thibbadoe, Tibbado, Tibido = Thibedeau

Viancour = Vaillancourt

Yon = Dionne

First Names

First names, if they were common ones, were put down in their English equivalents. Thus Jean became John (and the common name Jean-Baptiste was often written down as John B., or just Baptist), Edouard - Edward, François - Francis, Michel - Michael, Antoine - Anthony, Henri - Henry, Pierre - Peter, Olivier - Oliver, Marie - Mary, etc. Others were written down phonetically according to how the census taker heard them.

Please note: This is only a guide. You should always check other sources to confirm the actual spelling of names.

1833 census version ---> "real names"

Alexr. = abbreviation for Alexandre

Augustus = Augustin

Babtist = Baptiste, short for Jean-Baptiste

Furmond, Fiermond, Firmond = Firmin

Ignus = Ignace

Jn. = abbreviation for John (Jean)

Junr. = abbreviation for Junior

Larion = Hilarion

Salastin is most likely Celestin

Sapriean = Cyprien

Senr. = abbreviation for Senior

Return to the 1833 NB Census of Madawaska
Return to Upper St.John Valley Communities Page

Last revised 14 Jun 2006
©2004-2006 C. Gagnon