April 21, 2015

“Coton jaune — Acadian Brown Cotton: A Love Story.”

Hand-woven blankets preserve Cajun culture

Cheré Coen| Special to The Advocate

April 20, 2015

Art projects are sometimes like puzzle pieces, waiting for someone to see the big picture and put the puzzle together.

Such was the case of Sharon Gordon Donnan, of Los Angeles, and Suzanne Chaillot Breaux, of Lafayette, when they discovered a hand-woven Acadian blanket made from brown cotton in a Washington antique store and ended up creating a documentary on Acadian weaving titled “Coton jaune — Acadian Brown Cotton: A Love Story.”

Cinema on the Bayou Film Society will present the film at 6 p.m. Wednesday, May 13, at Vermilionville, in recognition of the 250th anniversary of the arrival of the first Acadians in Louisiana.

April 11, 2015





1050. LaBauve, Eloise Elizabeth, born 08 Mar 1919, died 20 Dec 1997, Section WC, Block Q, Lot 8, Quadrant E, "Eloise Elizabeth LaBauve / March 8, 1919 / December 20, 1997

1051. LaBauve, Florence Mae, born 12 May 1916, died 22 Oct 1986, Section WC, Block Q, Lot 8, Quadrant E, "Florence Mae LaBauve / May 12, 1916 / October 22, 1986 / / WAC W W II"

1052. LaBauve, Irene Elise, born 08 Sep 1888, died 20 Aug 1985, Section WC, Block Q, Lot 8, Quadrant E, "Irene Elise LaBauve / September 8, 1888 / August 20, 1985"

1053. LaBauve, Mary Lucille. [See Mary Lucille LaBauve Frederick.]

1054. LaBauve, Raphael J., born 1898, died 1962, Section WC, Block Q, Lot 8, Quadrant E, "Raphael J. / LaBauve  1962

February 27, 2015

Acadians’ arrival in Louisiana 250 years ago Commemorated


An event commemorating the 250th anniversary of the arrival of the Acadians in Louisiana from Canada drew an overflow crowd to a room at the Old U.S. Mint in the French Quarter on Saturday.

It’s a saga that began in 1765, when a boatload of 200 Acadians who had been kicked out of Canada arrived at New Orleans, led by Joseph Beausoleil Broussard. The exact date of their arrival is unknown, but their presence is confirmed by records of the baptism of the first child of that group on Feb. 19, 1765.

The 250th anniversary ceremony was such a popular draw that even representatives of the French and Canadian consul-generals’ offices couldn’t get in at first because the room was filled to capacity with about 200 people.

Others who wanted to attend waited outside the room on the Mint’s third floor, watching a video feed of the proceedings.

“From Acadie to Louisiana in 1765 — the Birth of Cajun Culture 250 Years Ago” featured readings from documents and letters from the time of the arrival of the first Cajuns in Louisiana, Cajun music and dance, and talks by such scholars of Louisiana culture as Barry Ancelet, of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and Warren and Mary Perrin, of the Acadian Museum in Erath.

Mary Perrin said there’s a common misconception that “the entire population of Acadian exiles came to Louisiana.”

Mary Perrin, who co-authored “Acadie Then and Now” with her husband, said about a third of those who were exiled died of diseases or exposure or in shipwrecks. The two-thirds who survived “ended up strewn all along the margins of both the Old and New Worlds.”

She called the expulsion of the Acadians “a purposeful attempt to destroy the Acadian people by dispersing them across a sizable wedge of the earth,” even as far as the Falkland Islands off the coast of Argentina, 7,000 miles from their Nova Scotia homeland.

Mary Perrin quoted historian John Mack Faragher, who called the exile of the Acadians “the only episode of European state-sponsored ethnic cleansing against a European people in North American history.”

But the scheme to stamp out the Acadians “failed utterly,” she said.

Beausoleil, as he is known, was the leader of that first group of Acadians to reach Louisiana. He had taken part in a revolt against the British leaders in Canada and eventually negotiated a deal for the group to safely leave the area.
The British were happy to see them go, Warren Perrin said.

The arrival of the Acadians in New Orleans after a stop in what is now Haiti was “a transplantation of a culture that refused to bow down to the most powerful force on earth, the British government,” he said.

Warren Perrin was instrumental in securing a statement from Queen Elizabeth in 2003 declaring that the deportation of the Acadians was done contrary to British law.

“She established forever a day of remembrance of the suffering of these ancestors who fought and suffered so hard to make sure that this culture would not die,” he said.

Ancelet, an author and a professor of Creole folklore, said willingness to improvise is what helped Acadians survive and thrive in their new homeland.

Pointing to the Dauterive Compact, in which a group of Acadian settlers agreed to tend cattle for their owner, Ancelet said the Acadians probably didn’t know anything about cattle but agreed to do the job anyway.

He said Cajuns continued to do the same thing in later years as they went to work in the oilfields and the seafood industry with little to no experience.

The Acadians’ new surroundings in Louisiana were challenging, Ancelet said. They had moved to an area much warmer than the place they had lived in and had to put up with mosquitoes, heat, heavy rains and “prehistoric reptiles” — meaning alligators.

“Don’t think for one minute it was easy for them,” Ancelet said.

Co-sponsors of the event included the National Park Service; the Louisiana State Museum, which operates the Old Mint; CODOFIL; and the French American Chamber of Commerce.

Students from a French immersion charter school, Lycée Français de la Nouvelle-Orléans, sang during the ceremony, and Cajun musician Bruce Daigrepont, who once led a musical group named after Beausoleil, also performed. Performance artist Suzanne Leger and dancers in period costume by Renaissance Cadienne also took part.


As the Acadians were being deported during the period 1755 through 1765, they were determined to protect their families, to survive this difficult journey, to continue their Catholic faith and to keep their Acadian identity.  They lost everything during the deportations except for the scant few things they could bring onto the overcrowded ships.  As they disembarked along at ports along the eastern seaboard of the United States, among Atlantic ports in France and in England coastal towns, they had start their lives anew – having lost essentially all their possessions.   Some drowned as their ships sank; and others died of illness on board the ships – both forever sharing the sea as their final resting place.  Most that survived the wretched deportation voyages died poor and were buried in pauper graves – with at most a small wooden marker atop their grave.
A few Acadian deportees prospered later in life and could afford a stone marker as their memorial; however, most of these stones suffered from the weather over the years and became so worn that their inscriptions are no longer legible.  Vandals destroyed others.  The gravestones of a few Acadian deportees have survived the almost 200 years since they died and are still legible today.
For many years I have sought these in cemeteries across North America.  These tombstones mark the graves of Acadians who were born in Acadia before being deported or who were born in Acadia prior to 1764 and remained in Acadia successfully avoiding deportation.  Here are the few I have found.

by Marty Guidry

November 19, 2014


Edmundston (NB) – After the 17 days of celebration, reflection and meetings of the 5th Congrès mondial acadien, the time has come to show our first review and to express our sincere gratitude. Acadia of the world responded to the invitation from the 50 municipalities of Acadia of the Lands and Forests from August 8 to 24 – the CMA organizers couldn't be happier with the turnout.

"Thanks to the thousands of volunteers that have been passionately working for years, to the financial partners, and to the fantastic team, we can proudly say loud and clear that the Congrès mondial acadien 2014 was a true collaborative success!", said Mr. Émilien Nadeau, President of the CMA 2014
Whether it was for the 120 family gatherings, the 400 community activities and projects, the 3 great gatherings, the 7 symposiums and conferences, the Economic Summit or the 3 major events, there were thousands of visitors that came and discovered the new energy of the host territory, Acadia of the Lands and Forests.
"We are very happy to have welcomed as many people during the celebrations, but we are especially delighted to see the collaboration spirit between the communities of Acadia of the Lands and Forests which stemmed from the Congress. I would like to thank the local communities for their commitment and the Acadia of the world for coming in such large numbers to the CMA 2014", shared Mr. Léo Paul Charest, Executive Director of the CMA 2014.

The organizing committee of the Congrès mondial acadien would like to thank all of the people who contributed during the past years, the more than 5 000 field volunteers, the government and private partners, and the team of employees for their unconditional involvement and dedication.

Many indicators already demonstrate the success of this 5th Congrès mondial acadien. The following numbers speak for themselves.
• Opening ceremony and concert in Edmundston, NB: 8 000 people;
• Tintamarre, Acadian National Holiday ceremony and concert in Madawaska, ME: 12 000 people;
• New Beginning Ceremonies and concert in Témiscouata-sur-le-Lac, QC: 8 000 people;
• 20 000 participants at the family gatherings;
• More than 800 artists on the different CMA stages and more than 100 experts;
• More than 2 000 participants at the symposiums and conferences as well as the great gatherings;
• 45 leaders who commit to ensure the lasting legacy of the Congress through economic development;
• 50 000 visitors and 500 000 entrances during the 17 days of festivities.
- 30 -
To request more information or an interview:
France Le Moignan – Communications Coordinator - CMA 2014
France.le.moignan@cma2014.com ; Phone: (506) 737-2014 ext. 5436

June 22, 2014



Since our last contact (5 months ago), the big news is the forthcoming World Acadian Congress of 2014, which will be held at the borders of the state of Maine and the provinces of New Brunswick and Quebec. If you want more informations on that event in two years, you can check their web site: http://cma2014.com/en_accueil
I will attend the 2014 WAC and be able to meet all those who will come to the "Bro" reunion and will be able to give some genealogy workshops at least on the 18th (LA Day) and surely also during the "Bro" reunion. The "Bro" family reunion will be on August 17th - hope to see you all there !

BOOKS        If people are interested in buying either one of the three genealogy books "A Breau genealogy" at the World Acadian Congress, i'll be selling them at a special price of 50$ (rather than 60$) since I won't have to send them by mail. So, if you are attending the WAC2014 and wish to have a copy of the genealogy books, just tell me what volume you want and i'll bring them along with me (i'll be there between August 14th and 21st)

Au revoir,


Ceci est mon message de vérification semi-annuelle d'adresse de courrier électronique de tous mes contacts au fil des années. J'envoie ce courriél afin de vérifier si votre adresse de courriél est toujours valide (si ce n'est plus le cas, ce courriél devrait rebondir).

Si vous préférez que j'utilise une autre adresse de courrier électronique pour vous contacter, sentez-vous bien libre de me l'indiquer, sinon je continuerai à utiliser celle-ci.

Depuis notre dernier contact (il y a 5 mois), la grande nouvelle est la venue du prochain Congrès Mondial Acadien en 2014, qui se tiendra aux frontières de l'état du Maine et des provinces du Nouveau-Brunswick et du Québec. Si vous désirez plus d'informations sur cet événement à venir dans 2 ans, vous pouvez accéder à leur site internet au: http://cma2014.com/fr_accueil
Je participerai au CMA2014 afin de pouvoir rencontrer les participants à la réunion des "Bro" et j'offrirai des ateliers de généalogie au moins le 18 août (Journée de la Louisiane) et sûrement durant la réunion des "Bro" (17 août). La réunion de la famille "Bro" aura lieu le 17 août prochain - j'espère vous y voir tous !

LIVRES        Si des personnes étaient intéressées à acheter l'un ou l'autre des trois volumes de généalogie "Une généalogie Breau" au Congrès Mondial Acadien, je les vendrai au prix spécial de 50$ (au lieu de 60$) puisque je n'aurai pas besoin de vous l'envoyer par la poste. Alors si vous participer au CMA 2014 et que vous désirez une copie d'un des volumes de généalogie, indiquez-moi quel volume vous désirez avoir et je les apporterai avec moi (je serai sur place entre le 14 et le 21 août)

Au revoir,

                                  (   O   )

        Robert Brault
        Animateur de vie spirituelle et d'engagement communautaire
        Communauté éducative de Terrebonne
        Commission Scolaire des Affluents
        (450) 492-3619 poste 1931
        courriél: robert.brault@ens.csaffluents.qc.ca

April 24, 2014


Please join us Sunday afternoon April 27 at 2 p.m. for the film The Story of the Cajuns.  The film will be shown on the 2nd floor in the conference room.

Elaine Clément

 Acadian Memorial
121 S New Market St.
P.O. Box 379
St. Martinville, LA 70582
(337)394-2260 fax

April 21, 2014



Cajuns from all walks of life — from cattlemen and shrimpers, to scholars and artists — tell the tales of their ancestors, painting a picture of Acadian history in a new documentary, “The Story of the Cajuns Part I.”

The documentary is the work of filmmaker Brenda Jepson, a native of Maine, who said the film has its roots in her intrigue about why she grew up surrounded by Thibodeauxs, Robichauds and other surnames so closely tied to Cajun culture.

Maine, she said, was one of the earliest French settlements in the New World.
“This is the first place the Acadians settled in 1604,” Jepson said. “They were here before Jamestown, before the Pilgrims. They were master farmers and builders hand-picked to help settle North America.”

Jepson said she learned about the early settlements while working on a previous film, “The Story of the Acadians,” with her husband, Alan Jepson.

“The Story of the Acadians,” which came out in 2006, describes how the agrarian settlers got caught between two of what were then the world’s strongest powers, France and Great Britain, in a struggle to gain control of North America.

The British forcefully removed the Acadians from Nova Scotia in the mid-1700s, and many found themselves in Louisiana.

Jepson said this is where “The Story of the Cajuns” picks up.
“That’s where it takes off, with the Cajuns,” she said. “What happened after the expulsion?