Turcotte Family Celebration

The Country of Our Ancestor

Province of France, Poitou is one of thirty three (33) governments of the former regime. Bounded north by Brittany and Anjou in the Northeast by Touraine on the east by Berry and the Channel to the west by the Atlantic Ocean on the south by the Saintonge, and Angoumois Aunis.

Capital: Poitiers

Le Poitou

Former French province on the west coast, divided into two distinct parts: the upper and lower Poitou. The first expanded eastward and included in its main towns: Poitiers, Chatellerault, Montmorillon the Trimouille, Saint Savin, Loudin, Richelieu, Parthenay, Vivonne. The main cities of Lower Poitou, where the Vendée were: Niort, Saint-Maxent, Fontenay-le-Comte, Maillezais, Luzon, Beauce-sur-Mer, Les Sables d'Olonne, the Garnache, Mortagne-sur - weaned.

From time immemorial, this province does not sound much as the din of battle.

Poitou is the former country Pictave, whose role was almost zero during the conquest of Gaul by Julius Caesar, and even supplied the invaders relief against the Veneti. In the Middle Ages, crossing what region Poitou, between Aquitaine and the Paris basin, saw three decisive events: 1 - between Clovis and the Visigoths in Vouillé in the year 507; 2 - between Charles Martel and Arabs in 732, 3 - between the French and the English in 1356. Feudalism had grown up since the tenth century at the same time as church property.

With the arrival of Calvin (1534) and the success he had with this population increased to austerity, there knew the anguish of the Reformation and the authorities of religious wars of the late sixteenth century.

Under the seat of the absolutism of Louis XIV (1628-1715) ended the feudal system as a political power, which Louis XI (1423-1487) had struck the first blows.

The province, in the sixteenth century, was booming when it was ruined by the wars of religion (Battle of Moncontour) revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685, dealt a serious mistake cited what were Protestant and Niort Saint-Maxent. During the Revolution, in 1790, Poitou helped form the current three departments, Vienne, Deux-Sevres, and Vendee.

La Vendée

During the division of departmental France in 1790, the province of Poitou was subdivided to form the departments of Vendée, Western; Deux-Sevres, and the environment and the Vienna, Eastern. But for its inhabitants, who had more in ideas, there was still time for the Bocage and the Marais, as the country called the Vendee, whose name comes from the river that flows through and which takes its source in the ponds of savagery (Deux-Sèvres) and empties into the Sevre niortaise.

The department of Vendée is bathed in the west by the Atlantic, forming several islands. It is bounded by the following departments: Lower Loire, Maine-et-Loire, Deux-Sèvres and Charente-Lower.

Its area is 6.701 square kilometers. It comprises three districts: 1 - La Roche-sur-Yon 2 - The capital city: Fontenay-le-Comte, and 3 - Les Sables d'Olonne. It contains 304 municipalities with a population of 438.520 inhabitants almost exclusively of farmers.

The Vendée suffered cruelly under the hell of the Revolution. We know the heroic Vendée insurrection of 1793, following the Civil Constitution, this bloody episode when the country was only bruises, tears and prayers, Chou has felt great, the shoulder sewn jacket goat the heavy guns in their hands, singing the Te Deum victorious before the white flag fleur-de-lis, without bluster or meanness standing up to Hoche, Travot to Genet, at Valentine, Dupuis, despite the massacres of paths, d 'Fire and terror, until the last small cohort shatter and fall prey to the death of its brave leaders.2.

In the seventeenth century, when emigration to New France Vendée was part of Poitou.

Mouilleron-en-Pareds (Vendée)

At the foot of the famous Rocks in famous mills, with its curious fountain, its old tower of the eleventh century (carillon), Mouilleron-en-Pareds was formerly designated as the White City and keeps many traces of prehistoric times the period of Celtic and Gallo-Roman times.

It signals the transition to Mouilleron, August 28, 1206, John Lackland, king of England, going from Guyenne in Britain. Mouilleron depended then the Baronnerie Vouvant and thus had to the Lord, Dumais, "the Bastard of Orleans," Companion of Jeanne d'Arc. We still see the ruins, 3 km. Castle-Chalier Portault, whose most famous owner was Honorat Prevost, Huguenot gentleman, a confidant of Coligny, Vice-Admiral of the Fleet in La Rochelle, killed at Jarnac (1569).

Picture of Mills in Vendée

During the Wars of Religion, the church was devastated (1562-1565), many massacres and looting.

Photo – Private Archives of Pierre Turcotte (Québec)

During the Revolution, this town located near the boundaries of the insurgent Vendée, suffered many of the struggles of the Great War, the passage of the infernal columns. In his memoirs, Robespierre quotes the congratulatory letter he wrote to General Westermann following the battle and the burning of mills Mouilleron.

A member of the States General of 1789, Father Francis Mary Hilaire Jumilhac Chapel (1747-1833) was born in La Motte, emigrated, he was tutor to the Russian court for over twenty years and still be seen near the Place du Vieux Marché, the family home of the astronomer Charles-Louis Largeteau (1791-1857), member of the Academy of Sciences and peer of France.

Since 1846, Mouilleron has a Protestant church.

Mouilleron, however, is the best of his glory because it is the home of President Georges Clemenceau and Marshal of France Jean de Lattre de Tassigny.

The first, born in 1841 in the old Rue de la Chapelle (home Gautreau), was at the end of the 1914-1918 war, the "Father of Victory". The mayor has the bronze Tigre slaying the Eagle that the city of Paris offered him when he signed the Treaty of Versailles.

The second, born in 1889 in the family, for nearly 150 years, presides over the destinies of the town, was the signatory on behalf of France to the German surrender in Berlin, having been the commander of the First French army, the army of the Rhine and Danube, the first Commander in Chief Land of Western Europe, then High Commissioner and Commander in Chief in Indochina, he had the pain of losing his only son, Lieutenant Bernard de Lattre, May 30, 1951. Knocked himself in January 1952, appointed Marshal of France with the words: "A well deserved of the Fatherland." (Mention already attributed to Clemenceau), he sleeps his last sleep beside the young hero in the small parish cemetery.

And on the Hill of the Rocks, one of thirteen mills was converted into a chapel in their memory. He reminded everyone that we're here on a Mecca of Vendee.

Map of Mouilleron-en-Pareds

Photo – Private Archives of Pierre Turcotte Québec. The road of our ancestor.

In memory of Clemenceau and de Lattre was organized in 1959, next to City Hall, the Museum of Two Wins. Among the objects or documents gathered in this museum, we note the bust of Clemenceau - with the original mask - by Sicard, and that of Jean de Lattre by Collamarini; the flag of the Rhine and Danube and Marshal of France, the birth of Clemenceau and the statute "has deserved well of the Fatherland" book nut and various documents relating to the imprisonment of General de Lattre in Toulouse and its invasion of Riom, a photograph of the record Head of the First French Army General de Gaulle after the landing, the marshal's baton of the glorious leader; numerous autographs: Cardinal Roncalli (John XXIII), General de Gaulle, Cardinal Tisserand, General Weygand, the Marechal Juin, Paul Claude, François Mauriac, etc.. ... "This museum, around which there is already the enthusiasm of visitors, many, is more than the evocation of a glorious past: it was organized to create and nurture life expectancy" (L. Chaigne).

Currently, Mouilleron-in-Pareds, hosts numerous summer residents and tourists eager for rest and quiet.

Mouilleron industrialized, modernized, while faithfully preserving the memory of her glorious son.

Mouilleron-en-Pareds municipality composed of 1,800 souls, mostly employed in the cultivation of land, is located twenty-five kilometer (15.6 m) from Fontenay-le-Comte, the capital of the Department of Vendée, subdivision of the former province of France: Poitou.

Interesting places: Walled enclosure, called Le Chatelier-Portault, the ancient fortifications. In terms of religion, Mouilleron-en-Pareds was under the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Maillezais from 1317 to 1648, the year saw the bishopric moved to La Rochelle, and since then has remained under his égide.3.

La Rochelle crest

Private Archives of Pierre Turcotte (Québec)

Emblem of tremblade, Aunis diocese of La Rochelle, where Marie Giraud, wife of Abel Turcault, originated.