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The Fougère Genealogy

Coat of Arms: Fougère

Please note: All of the html code has not yet been entered on this page which means that it may be a little difficult to read. As time permits it will be cleaned-up. Please also note that what I am showing here are my direct line ancestors, down to my great-grandfather's generation, with the siblings included. I have not attempted to go beyond that at this time, on this page; however, I do have thousands of additional Fougere/Frazier descendants in another data base.


Although the Chinese had hereditary surnames 2000 years ago, in Europe until 1100 AD, most people had only one name. In fact, this is still true today in scattered parts of the world. As small towns and villages became more populated it became extremely awkward to have three John's, four Robert's and six William's all in one town without any additional designation. So very gradually one of the John's who was known for his long legs became known as John the long fellow, and eventually John Longfellow. John, the village carpenter became known as John Carpenter. William lived near a small stream that was narrow and shallow enough that the villagers could cross along with their animals. He was called William Ford. The William who was Robert's son became, of course, William Robertson.

So we find that surnames evolved from four general sources: a man's occupation; where he lived or had come from; his father's name; or from a personal characteristic or physical feature.

The French surname Fougères (pronounced Foozhair) originated from the town of Fougeres, now capital of an arrondissement in the Department of Ille-et-Vilaine in Brittany, formerly one of the strongest fortified places in Brittany, and named from its ferns (fougeres). Fougere is a comparitively rare name, therefore, meaning, "dweller at or near a place where fern grew." (Ref: Americana, 1930, 24, page 240.)

Knowing that different spellings of the same original surname are a common occurrence, it is not surprising that dictionaries of surnames indicate the actual spelling variations of the Fougere surname to be Fougeres, Fougerat, Fougeray and Fougeron, Forshee, Fouseer, Fousee, Fouse, Fouseur, Forseur; and the author has found Fouchey, Faucher, Foughey, Fougire, etc., used in the United States. Although bearers of the old Fougere name comprise a small percentage of individuals living in Canada and the United States, there are a large number of direct relatives who are using one of the Fougere name variations. Of course, as explained in the "Foreword" of this book, most Fougeres who came to the United States changed the name to Frazier or in some cases one of its variations.

A word about the "Frazier" name. Though it, or its variations, today, are considered to be of Scottish origin, in fact, the name was originally Norman. The arms of the family are strawberry leaves, "fraises" in French, with strawberry bush being "fraisier." In 749 A.D., Pierre Fraser, Seigneur de Troile, was sent by Charlemagne as an ambassador to Adiaius, King of Scotland, and he married Euphemia, daughter of Adiaius Rahan. In addition, Lords Lovat, head of the Clan of Fraser, were related to Marquis de la Frezelier of France. (Ref: Jelke and Frazier and Allied Families by L. Effington DeForest, 1931) But, again, other than its adopted use, the Frazier name has no relation to the Fougere name.

While there are a wealth of first names available, the actual selection process has been somewhat limited. It is necessary to remember that in 1545 the Catholic Church made the use of a saint's name mandatory for baptism, so for centuries first names have been confined to the John-and-Mary tradition. In fact, in all Western Countries, during the Middle Ages, there were only about 20 common names for infant boys and girls. And, then as now, John and Mary were most frequently used. Fougere's and Frazier's into the Twentieth Century are no exception to this rule. However, even though an ancestors name was Mary Elizabeth, or Mary Frances (within the same family), they may never have been known as anything but Elizabeth or Frances. In the case of a man who gave his son his name, in many cases the son would be known by his middle name. This makes research difficult if you do not have a complete name, or in some cases where you have the proper first name, but the commonly-used name has been forgotten, or vice versa.


Since the early 13th Century, Coats of Arms and Heraldry have been a source of great fascination as well as a subject of true historical importance. More than half a million Coats of Arms have been recorded.

Under most heraldic rules, only first sons of first sons of the recipient of a Coat of Arms are permitted to bear their ancestor's arms. Younger sons may use a version of their father's arms, but the rules of heraldry say that they must be changed ("differenced") somewhat. This rule, of course, in today's society has been abandoned in the United States, and frequently a coat of arms is used if it has anything to do with the name. A Fougere Coat of Arms is associated with European medieval culture and has been recorded in the heraldic archives. There were more than one Fougere Coat of Arms; however, the earliest which has been found is described as follows: "De gu. au chev. d'arg., acc. en p. d'une branche de fougere d'or; au chef du meme, ch. de sept mouch. d'herm. de sin." When translated the blazon also describes the original colors of the Fougere arms as: "Red; a silver chevron accompanied at the base by a gold fern branch; a gold upper third charged with seven green ermine spots." While clear definitions of the symbolism on a Coat of Arms is not available, today, generally the following is accepted and represents a clue about the bearer: gold denotes generosity, valour or perserverence; silver represents serenity and nobility; red represents fortitude and creative power; green means loyalty and splendor; ermine represents dignity and nobility; and of course, the fern is simply an English translation of the French word "fougere," and is uncommon in heraldry.

The source for the Fougere Coat of Arms shown in this book is RIETSTAP ARMORIAL GENERAL.


The First Generation, In France

The first record of the Fougere's in North America is that of the marriage of Jean Fougere to Marie Bourg in Port Royal on 27 November 1713. It is not known precisely when Jean Fougere came to Port Royal, though it was after 1698, and the first time his signature appears on a register is at Port Royal on 5 February 1709. He moved to Port Toulouse between 1720 and 1722, where he was a navigator and fisherman. The marriage record does indicate that he was born in Poupry, (Chateaudun, Eure-et-Loir) France, the son of Jean Fougere and Marie Barre (Baroi), daughter of Robert (Nilhouard) Barre and Marie Bideault, who were married at Pourpry in 1665. Marie was baptized 15 March 1667 at Pourpry. She died in 1689, age 22, in Pourpry. Pourpry is a small town about fifteen miles northwest of Orleans, France. It is about one hundred miles south of Paris. Jean Fougere and Marie Barre's children were:

1. Female (name illegible), born 12 July 1688 at Pourpry.

2. Jean, born between 1685 and 1689 at Pourpry, died 1750 at Port Toulouse, Nova Scotia, married (1) 27 November 1713, to Marie Bourg, at St. Jean Baptiste, Port Royal (now Annapolis Royal) Nova Scotia, born 1688-1690 at Port Royal, died c. 1730 -1 at Pourt Toulouse (St. Peter's, Cape Breton) daughter of Abraham Bourg and Marie Brun. (2) 1733, Marie-Madeline Belliveau, daughter of Charles, and Marie Cecile Melanson. She was married at age 14 at Port Toulouse.

3. Marguerite, married Abraham Dugas.

4. Son (name unknown) who settled in Quebec and changed his family name to "Fugere."

5. Son (name unknown) who settled in an unknown locality.

The Treaty of Utrect was signed between France and England in 1713. Under the terms of that Treaty, France ceded Acadia, Newfoundland and Hudson Bay to England, while France kept Cape Breton (Ile Royale) and Prince Edward Island (Ile Saint Jean). However, the Acadians who remained did not consider themselves to be British subjects and they would not swear their allegiance to the King of England. This lead to the expulsion of nearly 7,000 Acadians by the British in 1755. There were no Fougeres included in the dispersion.

Construction of the fortress at Louisbourg began in 1714, following the Treaty of Utrecht. The French king began encouraging the Acadians to move to Ile Royale to either live and work at the fortress or to provide agricultural and fishing support to the garrison. Jean Fougere moved to the Port Toulouse (St. Peter's) area of Cape Breton with his family between 1720 and 1722, where he was a navigator and fisherman.

After the fall of Louisburg in 1758 the Fougere family managed to stay in Cape Breton and eventually established itself between Petit de Grat and Pondville (Barachois Espagnol) on Isle Madame. In 1800 George III, granted five of the Fougere brothers (descendants in the line about which this book is written) a total of 300 to 500 acres, each, in the area now known as Harbour Boucher and Frankville, in Antigonish County.

The Second Generation

About 1721 Jean Fougere and Marie Bourg made a decision to emegrate to Royal Island. From there they went to Port Toulouse in 1722. At Port Toulouse, Jean Fougere became a navigator where he employed three men in 1724 and eight in 1726. The children of Jean Fougere (second generation), born c. 1685, died between 1744 and 1749, and Marie Bourg, born c. 1691 at Port Royal, (daughter of Abraham and Marie Brun), died c. 1727 at Port Toulouse, Ile Royal (now St. Peters, C.B.), married 27 November 1713, (all born at Port Royal) were as follows:

1. Marguerite, born 2 February 1715, died 4 March 1715.

2. Marie-Josephe, born 2 February 1715, died 15 May 1715.

3. Marguerite, born 25 April 1716, died 1752, married c. 1735 to Abraham Dugas, son of Marin Abraham and Marie Madeline Landry.

4. Jean, born 4 October 1718, died before 1734 (possibly c. 1727).

5. Joseph, born 25 April 1720, one hour after midnight, baptized on 27th (Godparents were Joseph Bourg and Judith Guerin), died after 1790, married Marguerite Coste, daughter of Jacques and Francoise Petitpas, c. 1747, born c. 1727 at Port Toulouse, died 1788.

6. Marie-Josephe, born c. 1723, died 1752, married c. 1740, Charles Boudrot, born 1713, son of Charles and Marie Josephe Landry.

7. Anne (or Jeanne), born c.1725, married 1751, Michel Boudrot, born 1716 at Port Toulouse, son of Michel and Anne Landry.

8. Charles F., born 1726, died before 10 December 1768 (this is the date his wife settled his debts with Charles Robin as noted in Robin's Journal), married c.1755, Madeline Dugas, daughter of Claude and Marguerite Coste. (Another source indicates she was the daughter of Joseph Dugas and Marguerite Coste.)

The children of Jean Fougere and Marie-Madeline Belliveau, born c. 1711 (though her age of 34 in the 1952 census is in error, probably as the result of a deliberate attempt to make her appear nearer to her second husband in age), died after 1771, (a native of Port Royal, daughter of Jean and Cecile Melanson), married c.1728:

9. Louison, born c.1728, died c.1776-80.

10. Isabeau, born c.1729 (this individual is shown on the 1752 census, though not in other records, and is possibly the same person as Louise, number "14", these names sometimes being interchangeable).

11. Madeline, born c.1730, died 1730.

12. Madeline, born c.1731, died 1750 at Port Toulouse, married c.1748, Francois Bonin, born 7 September 1726 at Port Lajoie, son of Pierre and Marguerite Guyon (Dion).

13. Judith, born c.1733, married c.1750, Joseph Boudrot, born c.1721, son of Joseph and Marguerite Dugas.

14. Louise (Isabeau), born c.1735, married 1754, Joseph Petitpas, b. 1731. son of Claude and Francoise Lavergne (see "10", above).

15. Barbe, born c.1736, married, 1755, Louis Boudrot, son of Joseph and Marguerite Dugas.

16. Marie, born c.1737, died before 1752.

17. Jean, born c.1742, married c.1767 at Petit Degrat, Marguerite Landry, born 1750, daughter of Jean Baptiste and Josephine LeBlanc. Marriage blessed 25 October 1771 by the Abbe Bailly.

18. Michel (Boniface), born c.1743, died before 1811, married c.1766, Appoline Martel, born c.1743, died after 1811, daughter of Jean Baptiste and Marie Josephe Pouget. Marriage blessed 25 October 1771.

19. Marie Gervaise, born c.1744, died 1752.

After Jean Fougere died, c.1744, his second wife then married Claude Dugas, c.1750. The 1752 census shows her at age 34, Claude at age 26, with Jean's children, numbers 9, 10, 15, 17, and 18, living with them, along with a Dugas daughter, aged two months.

After the fall of Louisbourg, in 1758, the Fougere-Dugas clan managed to stay in Cape Breton and eventually established itself between Petit de Grat and Pondville (Barachois Espagnol) on Isle Madame.

The Ronald F. Frazier family of Braintree is descended at least seven times from Jean Fougere and his first wife, and three times from Jean Fougere and his second wife. They are also descended twice from his son Joseph, and Marguerite Coste, as well as from other brothers and sisters.

The Third Generation

Joseph Fougere (third generation), born 25 April 1720, married Marguerite Coste in 1747 and was living in Port Toulouse (St. Peter's) at the time of a census taken in 1752 for the French government by Sieur deLaRoque. The census reads as follows in respect to Joseph Fougere:

"Joseph Fougere, coaster, native of Port Royal, aged 36 years; married to Marguerite Coste, native of Port Toulouse, aged 32 years. They are in the colony 28 years. They have one child, Modeste Fougere, aged 4 years. They have Marie Madeleine, aged 12 years, native of Acadia, as a domestic. They have one ox, one cow, one heifer, two geese, four fowls and a share in a vessel. The dwelling in which he is settled was sold to him by Claude Dugas."

Joseph was, in fact, 32 years old at the time of LaRoque's census because the record of his baptism in April 1720 has survived. It is also interesting to note the Joseph purchased his dwelling from Claude Dugas. Claude Dugas married Joseph's step mother, Madeline, in 1750. Joseph's father, Jean, died around 1744.

Joseph's, wife, Marguerite Coste, was one-quarter Indian. Marguerite's mother, Francoise Petitpas, was one-half Indian and Marguerite's grandmother, Marie Therese, was a full blooded Mic Mac Indian (one of the Algonquin tribes) who married Claude Petitpas, the son of the village clerk at Port Royal. (Marie Therese was one of two Mic Mac Indians from whom the Braintree Fraziers are descended. Marie Aubois was another. From Ronald F. Frazier, Marie Therese can be found twice in the tenth and three times in the nineth generation. Marie Aubois is found once in the tenth generation. This means that R.F.F. is exactly 9/512, or almost 1/57 Mic Mac Indian. How's that for a drop of Indian blood? Of course, if more Indians are found, the percentage will rise.)

While Joseph Fougere and Marguerite Coste had only one child at the time of LaRoque's census, they went on to have eleven more children. Joseph and his family were living in Petit de Grat at the time of a census taken by the British government in 1771. The fortress at Louisbourg fell to the British in 1758, but it does not appear that the Fougeres were involved in the hostilities. However, the French settlers at Port Toulouse did lose Louisbourg as a commercial trading center. The settlers had been able to exchange dried fish, firewood and props at Louisbourg for food and clothing. After the fall of Louisbourg, the Jersey Island traders moved into the Ile Madame area to fill the void left by the collapse of Louisbourg.

Joseph Fougere and Marguerite Coste had seven sons (four of whom settled in Havre Boucher) and five daughters:

1. Modeste Fougere, born c.1748, married c.1773, Jean Forest, son of Simon and Marguerite Gauterot (seventh generation ancestors of R.F.F. on his mother's side), born December 1750).

2. Joseph Fougere, born c.1750, died before 1752.

3. Jean (John) Baptiste Fougere, born c.1753, died 9

February 1819, married Marguerite Deslauriers (born 24 December 1756, died 19 May 1818, daughter of Thomas and Marguerite Seguin).

4. Theotiste Fougere, born c.1754, married Joseph Forgeron (son of Pierre Forgeron and Marie Jeanne Pinet).

5. Louis Fougere, born c.1756, married c.1776, Charlotte Forgeron (daughter of Pierre Forgeron & Marie Jeanne Pinet).

6. Jacques (James) Fougere, born c.1759, married Madeline Petitpas, c.1787. They and their children settled near Guysborough County, Nova Scotia.

7. Joseph Fougere, born c.1759, married Appoline Boucher (daughter of Honore Boucher and Marie Anne Lasorde, born 25 December 1763.

8. Charles Fougere, born 30 November 1760, baptized 26 July 1771, married c.1790, Marie Modeste Richard, (born 12 June 1765, daughter of Charles and Anne Bonnevie.

In the 1817 census, there was one person over 50, 3 persons 16-49, 3 boys, 5 women, 0 girls, a total of 12 Acadians.

In the 1827 census, Charles was listed as head of household for 3 males and 1 female, with a total of 4 in the family. He was listed as a mariner, Roman Catholic, with 18 acres of cultivated land (cleared as opposed to wooded, with wooded not being listed), 3 tons of hay, 4 horned cattle, 13 sheep, 5 swine, and 140 bushels of potatoes.

9. Agathe Fougere, born 23 August 1764.

10. (Therese) Marguerite Fougere, born 15 October 1768, married Charles Lavandier (son of Abraham and Genevieve Bernard).

11. Marcel (Marshall) Fougere, born 9 September 1770, died after 1833, married c.1792, Ann Charlotte Richard (born 10 March 1767, daughter of Charles and Anne Bonnevie.

12. Marthe Fougere, born after 1771, married c.1790, Pierre Paul Lavandier (son of Abraham and Genevieve Benard).

John Fougere died in 1819, without leaving any children. The other three brothers, Jacques, Charles, and Marcel, all had families and these three brothers are the ancestors of all the Fougeres in Havre Boucher, as well as most of the Fraziers who settled in Braintree, Massachusetts, and the surrounding area.

Jean Fougere and Jacques Fougere were each granted 200 acres of land from George III, king of England, in the Barrio Beach area of East Tracadie, in 1787. In 1809, Marcel Fougere and Charles Fougere were each granted 500 acres in the Frankville area, and Jacques (James) Fougere was granted 300 acres. A map of the Havre Boucher area included in this book shows who the initial recipients of the crown grants were. As a point of reference, Marcel Fougere was granted 100 acres which includes the area where Andrew Fougere lives today and extending back through the lands that were owned by Edward (Ned) Fougere and actually extending back almost all the way to the railroad tracks to the area where Tom Fougere lives. Charles' land was to the left of Marcel's.

A council meeting of the government of Cape Breton on 15 February 1790, dealt with a petition of Julien Hamel for a lot of land at Arachat formerly occupied by Joseph Fougere and his son Jean but abandoned by them. Jean Forest, the son in law and agent for Joseph Fougere appeared before the council and testified approbation for Hamel. The grant was accordingly approved. Jean Forest had married Joseph's oldest daughter, Modeste, in 1773.

The "Census of Nova Scotia Poll Taxes" in 1791 for the Tracadie and Havre Boucher area reveals the following Fougeres in the Havre Boucher area:

Name Property Description Shillings Pence
Joseph Fougere Shallop 5 0
John Fougere 1 0
James Fougere Shallop 1 0
Charles Fougere 5 0
Marcel Fougere 1 0

The Fourth Generation

Charles Fougere (fourth generation) and Marie Modeste Richard had at least seven children:

1. Toussaint Fougere, born c.1795, died 19 January 1871, Charlotte Coste.

2. Dominique Fougere, born c.1800, died 26 May 1867, married first, before 1832, Marguerite Boucher; and secondly c. 1836, Adelaide Coste, born 17 February 1814, died 21 May 1867, daughter of Jacques and Marguerite Petitpas. In the "Assessment Rate for Polling District 49 for 1865" Dominic was listed as having real estate with a value of $200, personal property worth $58, and whole taxable property of $258. This was probably considered average for property owners of that time.

Dominique and his wife died of "consumption" (T.B.).

3. Barbe Fougere, born 25 November 1811, married Pierre Boucher.

4. Celeste Fougere, married 25 November 1813, Joseph Boucher.

5. Alexander Fougere, married 26 January 1831, Divine Coste, Daughter of Jean Baptiste and Ozite Lavandier.

6. Bonniface Fougere, born 4 March 1761, d. 16 March 1861, married 21 January 1833, Henriette Coste, born 10 July 1815, daughter of Philistin and Marie Langlois.

7. Francois Fougere, married before 1854, Geneveive Boucher died November 1862.

8. Charles, married Euphrosine Manet.

The Fifth Generation

Dominique Fougere (fifth generation), son of Charles Fougere and Marie Richard, married twice. His first wife was Marguerite Boucher, by whom he had two children:

1. Henriette, born 9 October 1832, at Havre Boucher.

2. Marie-Marguerite, born 8 January 1835, at Havre Boucher, married 10 November 1856, at River Bourgeois (RB), Charles Samson, son of Jean Samson (le jeune) and Marguerite Landry (disp. 4/4 cons.) (born about 1830). Charles Samson was a fisherman in 1871. Children, sur- name Samson:

a. Vitalien-Honre, baptized 21 December 1858, RB.

b. Jean-Edward, baptized 27 April 1862, RB.

c. Daniel-Dominique, baptized 6 August 1863, RB.

d. Charles-Alexandre, baptized 14 November 1864, RB.

e. Guillaume-S., baptized 15 September 1867, RB.

f. Joseph-Simon, baptized 13 October 1869, RB.

g. Marguerite-A, baptized 14 February 1872, RB.

h. Joseph-N., baptized 24 October 1873, RB.

i. Marie-Helene, baptized 10 October 1877, RB.

Dominique Fougere (fifth generation) married a second time, to Adelaide (Eliza) Coste (DeCoste), daughter of Jacques Coste and Marguerite Petitpas. Their children were:

3. Adelaide, born 2 January 1839 at Havre Boucher (HB).

4. Henriette, born 28 July 1841, HB, married 16 November 1863, RB, Fidele LeBlanc, son of Simon LeBlanc and Victoire Fougere, born about 1837, buried 21 September 1877, RB. Fidele LeBlanc was a fisherman in 1871. Children, surname LeBlanc:

a. Eliza, born about 1866.

b. Victoire, baptized 26 February 1868, died young.

c. Fidele-D., baptized 26 September 1869, RB.

d. Anne, baptized 25 July 1871, RB.

e. Elizabeth, baptized 9 October 1872, RB.

f. Charles-E., baptized 13 November 1875, RB.

g. Celeste (posthumous), baptized 6 May 1878, RB, buried 27 June 1884, RB.

5. Augustin, baptized 1 October 1843, HB.

6. Celeste, born 25 December 1846, HB.

7. Pascal (Paul Frazier), born c. 1848, HB, died 3 November 1912 HB. In 1871 he was listed as a servant in the household of Honre DeCoste (age 23, along with Henry DeCoste, age 26, and Lisan, age 19). He married 7 January 1874 HB, Marie Roy, born c.1852 HB, daughter of Firmin Roy and Elizabeth Gautreau. Pascal and Mary's marriage was officiated by Father P. Fiset, at HB, and listed him as age 25, a fisherman, bachelor, son of Dominick Fougere and Adda Coste, with their profession as "farmer." Mary "King" was listed as age 20, and a spinster, with parents names as Firmain King and Isabella Gotro, with their profession being farming. Witnesses were Edward Lavandier and Elias Fougere. All signed with an "+". Pascal was said to have had red hair. He died when he fell off of the roof of his barn while reparing it at about age 64 (his death came several months after that of his daughter--a situation which repeated itself with his son Isaac and Isaac's daughter). (Though some records indicate he was older, his marriage record and the 1871 census both place his birth at 1848. Pascal refers to Easter, and often children were named Pascal because of their close proximity of birth to Eastertime. Birth records remain unfound.)

The 1881 Census listed the family as follows:

Pascal D. Fougere M 50 Farmer [s/b 43]
Mary F 29 His Wife [s/b 39]
Mary E. F 16 Dtr. Servant
Harriet F 14
Isaac M 11
Adelaide F 8
Tracy F 7
Sarah A. F 4

"NOTICE:You may copy for your own use with this notice attached but not distribute electronically or in print or by any other means without written permission." Copyright 2001

Go to Ron Frazier's entire Page de la Maison! which includes early family photographs from the mid 1800's in Nova Scotia as well as many other items of possible interest.