June 22, 2016

COMBINED FAMILY REUNION

‎Kathy Kraemer Hebert‎ to Cajun Family Association The Breaux, Guidry and Hebert Family Associations are having a combined family reunion this Saturday, June 25 at the Woodman of the World building in Maurice, LA. Registration begins at 9:00 AM. There is no charge to attend. Jambalaya, black eyed peas and drinks will be provided. There will be no formal program but we will have some Cajun music provided by young musicians after lunch. Bring your lineage if you know it, pictures and stories to share. Contact me for more information

June 19, 2016

LOUISIANA'S FRANCOPHONE COMMUNITIES

Historically, Louisiana's Francophone communities have consisted of three primary groups: the Acadians (better known today as the Cajuns), the Creoles, and the Colonial French. The Acadians were Frenchmen who moved to and settled in the eastern most provinces of Canada, mainly in the Nova Scotia area during the early 17th century. Although the Acadians thrived in this area, they were expelled from their land by the British Government beginning in 1755. Some Acadians returned to France while others settled along the United States’ east coast and in Louisiana. Creole communities in Louisiana historically came from the State's slave population. Louisiana's slaves mainly come from the Senegambian region of Africa, and Louisiana Creole arose from their communication with their French-speaking masters. Colonial French is a variety of French that arrived with French colonists throughout the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. Colonial French has been spoken by a wide variety of groups in Louisiana, from free people of color, to plantation owners, to Native American tribes.

June 02, 2016

ACADIAN MEMORIAL CELEBRATION!

CELEBRATING 20 YEARS OF THE ACADIAN MEMORIAL Wednesday, June 15, 2016 121 South New Market St. St. Martinville, LA 4pm – Annual Membership Meeting 4:30pm – 6:30pm – Presentations and Reception RefreshmentsServed Acadian Memorial 121 S New Market St. P.O. Box 379 St. Martinville, LA 70582 (337)394-2258 (337)394-2260 fax www.acadianmemorial.org

May 15, 2016

KREATIVE GENEALOGY AWARD

LaBauve Genealogy Lynn Labauve of Gainesville, Florida shares fascinating tidbits of Acadian religious and secular traditions and foklore. Always a pleasure to read.

November 21, 2015

LOUISIANA ACADIAN (cAJUNS) HOMES

The Acadians (French: Acadiens, IPA: [akadjɛ̃]) are the descendants of the seventeenth-century French colonists who settled in Acadia (located in the Canadian Maritime provinces — Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island, Quebec, and in the US state of Maine). The settlers whose descendants became Acadians did not all come from the same region in France.

In the Great Expulsion of 1755-1763, mostly during the Seven Years' War, British colonial officers and New England legislators and militia deported more than 14,000 Acadians from the maritime region in what could be called an ethnic cleansing . Approximately one third perished. Gradually, some managed to make their way to Louisiana, creating the Cajun population and culture after mixing with others

When the Acadians first arrrived in Louisiana, some put up quick, temporary shelters made of wood and palmetto leaves. The Native Americans had been building such dwellings for years. Built upon a pole frame, palmettos would be uses on the roof (as was straw in France and Acadia). Many also used palmetto for walls until wood could be cut. When they had the time to build a more substantial structure, they often built homes by putting wood vertically into the ground for walls. These 2nd generation Acadian homes (1766-1827) were either poteaux en terre (post in ground) or planche debout (upright planks). The easiest of the two, poteaux en terre, was to cut logs, strip off the bark, and place it in a hole in the ground. The gaps between the logs would be filled with a mud and straw/moss mixture (bousillage). If they had the time and manpower, they might cut planks from the logs and place the planks vertically in the ground (planche debout) to make the walls (again, filling the gaps with bousillage). Roofs were covered with shingles or wood. These homes were built directly on the ground . The Acadians soon learned that to build a wooden home on the ground was not the way to go. The occasional flooding and insect damage was terrible to these kinds of homes. Upon arriving in Louisiana, they noted that Creole homes were often built off the ground. This kept the home from water & insects and helped provide better ventilation. The 3rd generation Acadian home (1790-1850) was built on pillars of wood or brick. It was small, averaging about fifteen by twenty-five feet in size. Many had galleries in front. The chimney - made of bousillage at first, later of brick - was on one end of a one-room home. Two-room homes often had the chimney in-between the rooms. The 4th generation Acadian home (1790-1920) was often larger that previous versions. By the mid-1800s, it was the common type of Acadian house. It has a gallery (porche on the front (and sometimes the back). This served two purposes. It gave them a place to sit to cool off and to socialize. It also allowed for a taller roof to provide room for storage and sleeping quarters. There were stairs to the atttic, usually located on the inside of homes in east Acadiana and outside the homes in west Acadiana. The upstairs sleeping area for the boys was called the garçonniere. The roof was covered with wood shingles at the beginning of this time period, but these were often replaced by corrugated tin roofing later in the 1800s. As the family grew, a separate but connected building was often built to the rear for kitchenspace or a bedroom. The windows had no glass, but were covered by wooden shutters. Some had two rooms side-by-side, with a front door opening up to each. One room was the common family room and kitchen, while the other room was a bedroom for the parents and daughters. As some Acadian families grew in size and wealth, larger homes with multiple rooms would be built.

As the 20th century progressed, most Cajuns began occupying contemporary housing styles, though some still have similar features to the old Acadian homes. Though there are a few 18th century Acadian homes scattered around south Louisiana, they are disappearing. This video of still pics represents only a portion of the snapshots I have collected of old Cajun homes. If you have old pics your are willing to share, please email them to rdezo@aol.com Thanks, Richard DesHotels

July 23, 2015

THE ACADIAN FLAG

To symbolize the French origin of the Acadians, a portion of the arms of their mother country, their fleurs de lis, silver on a blue field, is used as part of the flag. To symbolize Spain, the nation which controlled Louisiana at the time of the Acadian migration to Louisiana and under whom they prospered after years of exile, the old arms of Castille, a gold tower on a red field, appears in one section of the flag. The gold star on the white field represents Our Lady of the Assumption, Maris Stella, Patroness of the Acadians. The star also symbolizes the active participation of the Acadians in the American Revolution as soldiers under Galvez. [Marie Louise is descended from Vincent Brault’s eighth child Jean Breau, and she also has lineage from Firmin Breaux who was descended from Vincent’s seventh child Franocis. Marie Louise Braud Gerac grew up in Gonzales. She and her husband Lyle live in The Woodlands, TX.]

ACADIANS OF ST GABRIEL

On August 17, 1767, about fifty Acadian families -- more than two hundred people -- landed at Fort St. Gabriel on Bayou Manchac and the Mississippi River. On August 18th, they began dividing the lands given them by Antonio de Ulloa, first Spanish Governor of Louisiana. Wandering for years after being exiled from their homes in Acadia, these families settled in, built homes, worked their land, and became our Acadian ancestors. Hear about the deportation of the Acadians, the Acadian landing in St. Gabriel, the Spanish land grants, and the building and establishment of the old St. Gabriel Church as local historian, John A. Hebert, speaks about the Acadians of St Gabriel on Tuesday, August 4th, at 6:30 p.m. in Gonzales. For more information or to register, call the library at 647-3955.

July 21, 2015

This year, we celebrate the 250th anniversary of a significant event in the history of America and of Louisiana. The year was 1765. To the great surprise of the French officers in charge of the colony of La Louisiane, a ship arrived at the port of New Orleans carrying nearly 200 French-speaking, Roman Catholic men, women and children. They were exiles from a place called Acadie, the present-day maritime provinces of Canada: Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. They called themselves Acadians, and they were looking for a home./ For the better part of a decade, most of the men on this ship had been resistance fighters. They had waged a guerilla campaign against the British Empire. The latter, with overwhelming military power, was engaged in the forced ethnic cleansing of the Acadians from the lands first settled by their ancestors in 1604. (Yes, the Acadians predate the Pilgrims.) Thousands of Acadians perished. In Acadian history, this struggle is known as Le Grand Derangement, The Great Upheaval.