of the Provinces of
Many of Antoine Pilon's descendents became involved in the fur trade, primarily as paddlers in the canoe brigades which would fan out in the spring across the North American continent from Montréal, ladden with trade goods. Later in the year, just before freeze-up, many would return home with rich cargos of furs traded from distant lands. While away on these trips, these Pilons would learn many new customs and perhaps they also had a hand in inventing some new ones. For example, it is not unheard of for a voyageur to have a family at home on the island of Montréal, but to have another family thousands of kilometers away. And both unions could be blessed by the Church, albeit, unwittingly!
Such seems to the case with Antoine Pilon, born in 1789, the son of Pierre Pilon and Françoise Robidoux. Antoine, as a young man of barely 20 years of age married Archange Cuillerier dit Beaubien at Windsor, Ontario in 1809 (follow this link to learn about his Windsor, Ontario area family). Together they had 10 children and a rich descendence, among which I am included. However, it is also a certainty that Antoine continued to travel westward on trips that likely took more than a single season. One frequent destination appears to have been the Red River settlement of Winnipeg and the fur traders' community of St.Norbert, just south of Winnipeg. Beginning in 1821, Antoine is recorded to be the father of 11 children, the last of which is born in 1848, just two years before Antoine's death. The mother of these children, to whom he was married, was Angélique Lisette, a Saulteaux woman (the record of their marriage was lost in the great fire of the St.Boniface cathedral). Thus, Antoine's second family was Métis and like so many, they would eventually become tangled up in the whirlwind of events which defined the late XIXth century on the Canadian Prairies, especially in the struggles for Métis rights which came to be know as the Rebellions of 1870 and 1885 (see Christine Dumas Pilon's description of Louis Riel's last days of freedom).
It is thus with pride that Pilon International presents information on our "cousins from the second bed" or rather, the "other bed". We are all family. It was also with great joy that I met some of these distant cousins some years ago near Batoche, Saskatchewan (see the description of that Visit to Batoche in the Pilon Stories section).
As with any research, there are great gaps to be filled and you, the visitor, may be just the person to help fill some of them. the situation is particularly difficult with the Red River Métis following the fire. The information provided below is very much reconstructed from secondary documents. If you have information which would improve these pages, please contact us. We would be very happy to be able to include this new information and thus better help others who may be searching for links to this specific branch of the Pilon family.
Many thanks in advance.
Below are the children of Antoine Pilon (1789 - 1850) and Angélique Lisette (1805 -):
m. Cécile Harkness
m. Thomas Forbisher
(1837 - 1915)
m. Angélique Normand
|Élise (Lisette) Pilon
m. Baptiste Cadotte
m. Alexis Lamirande
(1845 - 1952)