Hi All, Written: May 28, 2009
We’re home as you can tell from the date this is being written and posted. In order to do Montreal justice I’m going to post three photo albums and two blogs. The first blog is this one and I’m going to call it “Montreal, Quebec – The Guertin’s”. As most of you are aware, the principal reason for taking this trip was to meet Dennis Guertin (pronounced by the Canadian’s “Guer – Ten”) with whom I have been communicating by internet for almost 25 years. Dennis some years ago put up the web site www.guertin.com/genealogy/guertin, (to go to the site just click your mouse on this address) which still today is the best source of information on our family. Dennis lives in Ottawa, so he drove up to Montreal with his brother, Marc and their wives Robin and Hillary to meet Susy and I and show us the city of Montreal.
Before I get into the photos let me tell you a little history which will put into perspective the significance of Montreal to the “Guertin’s”:
"Montreal was founded as a small French colony by Paul de Chomedey de Maisonneuve (1612-1676) and 50 settlers called “Ville-Marie” on May 17, 1642. After almost ten years, due to hardships, etc. the village still only had 50 settlers and the Iroquois Indians were becoming more dangerous. In November 1651 Maisonneuve set sail for France to recruit at least 100 more settlers to save the colony. He finally returned on November 16, 1653 with 103 soldiers, one of whom was “Louise Guertin dit Le Sabotier”. It is said that these 103 men saved Montreal and Canada from the Indians. Louise was contracted as one who clears bush and is a boot maker. Louise survived and married in 1659, all Guertin’s and a few other derivatives of that name (i.e. Yettaw) in North America descending directly from him and his wife. There is some property in the main port that belonged to Louise (Dennis had drawn it out on a map), but alas we have no hope of getting it back as a bridge covers a part of it, etc. etc..
Now you know why Susy and I ventured to Montreal, so why don’t we take a look at my cousin’s. In the first photo (see Montreal, Quebec – The Guertin’s photo album above) you see Marc on the left, yours truly in the center, and Dennis (in shorts) on the right getting ready for a formal shot. In the second photo you see the three of us posing formally. Does anyone see a family resemblence?? In the third photo you see the women getting ready for their formal shot, Robin on the left, Susy center, and Hillary on the right. In the fourth photo you see the formal shot of the three. As we walked the city (the first photos were taken near Notre Dame Basilica) we came across a statue of three ladies. Our girls couldn’t help but pose like the statue, the fifth photo showing the three getting ready to pose (again Robin on the left, Susy center, and Hillary on the right) and the sixth photo shows them posed. The seventh photo shows Dennis trudging along one of the streets in the old town, and the eighth shows Marc out in the lead on another street about ready to enter “Suzette’s” a nice little restaurant where we had lunch. The ninth photo shows the beautiful ladies (Hillary on the left, Robin in the center, and Susy on the right) sitting in front of a lovely tulip bed, and the tenth is the same shot, but a little more formal. We had walked and talked for most of the day, and the eleventh photo shows the three ladies walking toward our hotel, the downtown Holiday Inn, which is that building straight ahead with the Chinese Roofs (because the hotel sits on the corner of Montreal’s China Town).
I can’t express what a wonderful day Susy and I had with my cousins and their ladies. We all got along as if we had known each other for years and now we look forward to them visiting us in Florida someday soon. I’m going to post two more photo albums of the city itself and the views, plus one blog to explain them, but it make be a few days as we are still trying to get caught up with being gone for three weeks.
Love You All,