The Tweed area of Ontario, in Hungerford Township, Hastings County, is home to a number of families originally named Cournoyer. Four families and one single man by that name came to the Tweed area in the period from the late 1840s to the early 1860s from the Sorel area of Quebec. These people could not read or write, and as a result the spelling of the name was changed to the various forms listed in the title (and likely others). The name Cournoyer is often seen in the early Quebec records with the prefix "Hus".  Paul Hus came to Quebec from France in the 1660s.  He married Jeanne Baillargeon in Cap-de-la-Madeleine in 1669, and they settled in the Sorel area.  They had a large family.  Their sons took on different surnames, with "Hus" as prefix.  (Eventually, the "Hus" was dropped.)  One son, Pierre, took the name Cournoyer.  Pierre married Jeanne Vanet in 1700 in St. Francois du Lac, in the Sorel area.  These two are ancestors of most, if not all, of the Cournoyers of Canada. 

Use of the place name Tweed in this work should be understood to mean Tweed and the surrounding area. Catholic church records for the Tweed area are found in the registers of St. Michael the Archangel, in Belleville, until 1851 (LDS film 1298739).  I haven't been able to find the records from 1851 to 1869.  From 1869, Tweed records are in the registers of Sacred Heart of Mary, in Madoc (LDS film 1298801).  The registers of St. Carthaghs in Tweed begin about 1884 (LDS film 1298805). Other local records appear on LDS film 2032030. The birth, marriage and death records quoted here come from these registers as well as those of St. Pierre-de-Sorel in Quebec (LDS films 1294706 through 1294711).

Jean Baptiste Cournoyer was the first of that name to arrive in Tweed, and he was there by the late 1840s. The church records of St. Michael the Archangel, in Belleville, tell us that he was present at least as early as Feb. 19, 1848.  On that date, Jean Baptiste Cournoyer and Louise Palmer, his future wife, appeared in the register as witnesses to the wedding of Baptiste Lebarge and Harriet Robis (spelling uncertain).  According to the same records, Louise Palmer was baptized in the Catholic church on Jan. 21, 1851.  Her age was 17 years, 9 months, and her parents were John and Sophia (Walsh) Palmer.  It is likely that Jean Baptiste and Louise were married later that year.  However, the marriage must have been recorded in the registers that I have not been able to find.  This is unfortunate as the marriage record might have given the names of the parents of Jean Baptiste. For a long time his background was a mystery, until one of his descendants made contact with a priest in Quebec who was related to Jean Baptiste and who told her that the parents were Louis and Francoise (Cournoyer) Cournoyer of Sorel.  Note that Louis Cournoyer’s parents were listed as Emmanuel and Marie (Plante) Cournoyer on his marriage record to Francoise Cournoyer.  However, it appears that no couple with these names ever existed.  Apparently a marriage contract for Louis and Francoise exists, and that makes it clear that his parents were Jean Baptiste and Marie Francoise (Badaillac-Laplante) Cournoyer. 

The other Cournoyers who came to Tweed were four couples from the Sorel area, who arrived in the late 1850s/early 1860s.  They were:

Antoine and Angele (Latraverse) Cournoyer

Noel and Catherine (Cournoyer) Cournoyer

Joachim and Theotiste (Paulhus) Cournoyer

Paul and Catherine (Ethier) Cournoyer

The marriage records of the four couples appear in the registers of St. Pierre-de-Sorel, along with the baptisms of their children.

Some sources state that the four men were brothers.  This was not the case.  Noel and Paul were brothers.  Joachim, though not much older than Noel, was their uncle.  Antoine was a distant cousin of the other three, but was more closely related to Noel; they were brothers-in-law.  Noel's wife Catherine was Antoine's sister.  Jean Baptiste, who had arrived earlier, was Joachim’s nephew and Noel’s and Paul’s first cousin. There were other connections among them as well.  Angele Latraverse and Theotiste Paulhus were related to the other five, as both were also descended from Paul and Jeanne (Baillargeon) Hus, through sons who took names other than Cournoyer.  It is likely that Catherine Ethier was also related to the others; just about everyone in Sorel was related to everyone else.  The marriage records in the church registers make it clear that the church was careful about relatives marrying each other though.  The record will state whether a man and woman being married were second or third cousins, and if so, a dispensation from the church was needed.  I have never seen a case where first cousins married, and I expect it wasn't allowed, though I have seen a few cases where first cousins once removed married each other.

The following diagram illustrates some of the connections among these people:

See also http://www.carensecord.ca/families/Cournoyer.html for additional information.

At the time of the 1825 head-of-household census in Quebec, the families of Jean Baptiste, Noel, Paul, and Antoine, and possibly also that of Joachim were living on a small island in the St. Lawrence River, just off Sorel.  It was called Isle Madame, and was in the same group of islands as Ile Dupas and Isle de Grace.  Pierre and Basilice (Cournoyer) Rashotte, who moved to Tweed about 1855, came from Isle de Grace.  Basilice was a distant cousin of the other Cournoyers. The Rashottes are said to have moved because of the springtime floods which had become quite severe.  Assuming that these Cournoyer families continued to live on Isle Madame after 1825, the flooding is likely at least part of the reason for their move.  The Tweed area is supposed to have been familiar to the men of Sorel through their work in lumber camps there in the winters.

Other people besides the Cournoyers and Rashottes who came to Tweed from Sorel include the Bergerons.  Athanase (Tenos) Bergeron was married to Catherine Cournoyer, a cousin of Noel and Paul.  Catherine's father, Benoni, was a brother of Noel's and Paul's father, Pascal.  Also, Jean Baptiste Lavallee was Antoine's nephew. Jean Baptiste's parents were Patrice and Sophie (Cournoyer) Lavallee.  Sophie was a sister of Antoine. There must have been other relatives there as well.

It appears that the four couples did not make the move at the same time.  Their last appearances in the registers in Sorel that I have been able to find are as follows:

Paul and Catherine         Apr. 17, 1855

Noel and Catherine        Sept. 4, 1855

Antoine and Angele        Aug. 3, 1858

Joachim and Theotiste    Aug. 23, 1859

The first two couples above had more children after the dates listed above.  As the baptisms of these children do not appear in the Sorel registers, it must be assumed that the children were born and baptized in Tweed, during the time period for which I have not been able to find records.  In any case, all four couples were in Tweed by the time of the 1861 census.  The oldest daughter of Joachim and Theotiste, Marie Anne, was married to Alexis Bibaud in Sorel on Aug. 23, 1859.  (The register states that her parents were "of this parish", and that her father was present, so I assume that they were still living there at that time.)  It appears that this daughter stayed in Sorel.  Though the 1861 census shows her with her parents in Tweed, her husband was not present.  If she was there for a visit in 1861, she was back in Sorel in 1862, when the register shows the baptism of her child.  All of the rest of the children of the four couples made the move to Tweed with their parents.  In addition, the 1861 census shows Noel's and Paul's parents, Pascal and Marguerite, living in Tweed with Paul's family. I have been unable to find any of the Tweed Cournoyer families in Quebec in the 1851 census for the Sorel area, but it looks as if parts of it have not survived.

All four of these men were farmers.  As noted above, their last name was misspelled in a variety of ways. The same thing often happened with their first names. Joachim and Theotiste were "Joisent" and "Talis" or "Tatis" for the 1871 census.   There was also a tendency to anglicize names.  Noel became Christmas; Pierre, Peter; Michel, Mitchel; Angele, Angeline; and so on. As a number of first names were used more than once in the children and grandchildren of these families, it became difficult to distinguish one person from another with the same name. From my own observations, I believe that there was a tendency to give a man a middle initial that corresponded to the first letter of his father's name. I have seen Jean Baptiste Cournoyer, the son of Noel, referred to as John C. Courneya, with the "C." presumably standing for Christmas. Similarly, Antoine's son Denis had a son baptized John Alexander, but he was always called John D. Courneya.

The following lists are based on information found in the church registers noted above, supplemented by census information. They certainly contain some mistakes in the names and dates, due to error on my part, or gaps or mistakes in the church and census records. It should be remembered that after the families made the move to Tweed, the clergymen and enumerators were English-speaking men who often were not familiar with the French names and who may have attempted to anglicize them, and who certainly misspelled them at times. All of the family members who were born in what is now Quebec were baptized with the last name Cournoyer, but after the move to what is now Ontario, it was spelled in a variety of ways by the officials, and as most if not all of these Cournoyers could not read or write, it is difficult to say when the last name actually changed to Courneya and other variations as far as they were concerned. In short, the names listed here may not be exactly what these people called themselves.

As these names were so often misspelled, they aren't easy to find so I have indicated the spelling of the names in the index for the 1880 US and 1881 Canada censuses.

Jean Baptiste Cournoyer [Louis and Francoise (Cournoyer) Cournoyer] and Louise Palmer [John and Sophia (Walsh) Palmer]
Married about 1851, Tweed, ON
Spelling of names in the 1881 Canadian census index: Baptus and Louisa Courynier
Children: Born: Spouse:
Mary ~1852, Tweed, ON Louis Tardif [moved to Minnesota]
Gilbert ~1853, Tweed, ON Jennie Courneya [moved to Minnesota]
Sophie ~1854, Tweed, ON  
Jean Baptiste ~1858, Tweed, ON  
Louis ~1865, Tweed, ON  
Sophie ~1867  
Francoise Nov. 16, 1869, Tweed, ON  
Josephine Nov. 12, 1872, Tweed, ON  
Joseph Benjamin Feb. 24, 1874, Tweed, ON  
Pierre Nelson Apr. 17, 1876, Tweed, ON Catherine Prevost

Some descendants of Jean Baptiste and Louise (Palmer) Cournoyer


Antoine Cournoyer [Antoine and Veronique (Tessier) Cournoyer] and Angele Latraverse [Pierre and Catherine (Gauthier-Delisle) Latraverse]
Married Oct. 27, 1835, St. Pierre-de-Sorel
Spelling of names in the 1881 Canadian census index: Antoin and Anjail Corynier
Children: Born: Spouse:
Pierre Aug. 18, 1836, Sorel, QC Angele Letendre
Antoine Feb. 23, 1838, Sorel, QC Eva Genore
Philomene Jan. 21, 1840, Sorel, QC Alexander Genore
Odile Dec. 29, 1841, Sorel, QC Paul Rashotte
Narcisse Apr. 25, 1844, Sorel, QC  
Simon Jan. 19, 1846, Sorel, QC Mary Goulah [daughter of Joseph and Angelique (Desilets) Goulah]
Charles Sep. 27, 1847, Sorel, QC 1) Marie Clement 2) Margaret Foley
Paul May 14, 1849, Sorel, QC  
Remi Aug. 17, 1851, Sorel, QC Mary Foley [moved to Standish, Michigan]
Angele Sept. 15, 1853, Sorel, QC Eliazim Clement
Dieudonne (Denis) Aug. 22, 1857, Sorel, QC Marie Lajoie

Some descendants of Antoine and Angele (Latraverse) Cournoyer


Noel Cournoyer [Pascal and Marguerite (Salvaille) Cournoyer] and Catherine Cournoyer [Antoine and Veronique (Tessier) Cournoyer]
Married Aug. 16, 1836, St. Pierre-de-Sorel
Spelling of names in the 1881 Canadian census index: Chrismas and Cathorine Comayer
Children: Born: Spouse:
Henriette Sept. 22, 1837, Sorel, QC Michel Lesage
Odile Feb. 14, 1840, Sorel, QC died Oct. 4, 1840
Philomene Sept. 5, 1841, Sorel, QC Antoine Lamoureux [moved to Standish, Michigan]
Marie Jul. 30, 1843, Sorel, QC Xavier Gouin [moved to Monitor, Michigan]
Edwige Jul. 9, 1845, Sorel, QC Moses Lamoureux [moved to Standish, Michigan]
Pierre Mar. 9, 1847, Sorel, QC  
Catherine Apr. 6, 1849, Sorel, QC Pierre Rashotte
Paul May 20, 1851, Sorel, QC Clarice Valois
Bruno Mar. 18, 1853, Sorel, QC Clemence Bergeron
Jean Baptiste Sep. 3, 1855, Sorel, QC 1) Agnes Demarsh 2) Catherine Caul
Odile 1858?, Tweed, ON Israel (Slim) Goulah [son of Joseph and Angelique (Desilets) Goulah] [moved to Standish, Michigan]
Felix 1860?, Tweed, ON died before 1871

Some descendants of Noel and Catherine (Cournoyer) Cournoyer


Joachim Cournoyer [Joseph and Francoise (Cournoyer) Cournoyer] and Theotiste Paulhus [Jean Baptiste and Pelagie (Millet) Paulhus]
Married Aug. 23, 1836, St. Pierre-de-Sorel
Spelling of names in the 1881 Canadian census index: Whicham and Loutice Cornnier
Children: Born: Spouse:
Joachim Jul. 4, 1837, Sorel, QC died Dec. 4, 1837
Joachim Sept. 12, 1838, Sorel, QC died May 12, 1839
Pierre Sept. 12, 1838, Sorel, QC died May 12, 1839
Marie Anne Jun. 28, 1840, Sorel, QC Alexis Bibaud (Sorel)
Catherine Oct. 29, 1841, Sorel, QC Levi Letendre
Pierre Jun. 5, 1843, Sorel, QC Marie Cournoyer [daughter of Paul and Catherine (Ethier) Cournoyer - see below]
Paul Nov. 7, 1844, Sorel, QC Delima Letendre
Joachim Aug. 27, 1846, Sorel, QC Louisa Genereux
Simon Feb. 10, 1848, Sorel, QC Anne Wilcott [moved to Wisconsin]
Louis Sep. 3, 1850, Sorel, QC Sophie Rashotte
Marie Theotiste [believed to have used Charlotte/Lottie] Mar. 28, 1852, Sorel, QC believed to have married Joseph Wilcott and lived in Wisconsin
Marguerite Jan. 17, 1854, Sorel, QC  
Denis Feb. 17, 1856, Sorel, QC Lucille Wilcott [moved to Wisconsin]
Jean Baptiste May 5, 1857, Sorel, QC Vitelline (Ellen) Cournoyer [daughter of Paul and Catherine (Ethier) Cournoyer - see below]

Some descendants of Joachim and Theotiste (Paulhus) Cournoyer


Paul Cournoyer[Joseph and Francoise (Cournoyer) Cournoyer] and Catherine Ethier [Pierre and Marguerite (Tessier) Ethier]
Married Feb. 7, 1843, St. Pierre-de-Sorel
Spelling of names in the 1881 Canadian census index: Paul and Cathorine Cornoyer
Children: Born: Spouse:
Marie Jul. 3, 1845, Sorel, QC Pierre Cournoyer [son of Joachim and Theotiste (Paulhus) Cournoyer - see above]
Catherine 1847?, Sorel, QC Joseph Goulah [son of Joseph and Angelique (Desilets) Goulah]
Paul Jun. 21, 1849, Sorel, QC died Sept. 2, 1849
Pierre Feb. 18, 1851, Sorel, QC Marie Langevin
Paul Jan. 20, 1853, Sorel, QC Monique Lesage
Delima/Mary/Minnie Nov. 26, 1854, Sorel, QC Simon Goulah [son of Joseph and Angelique (Desilets) Goulah]
Vitelline (Ellen) 1857?, Tweed, ON Jean Baptiste Cournoyer [son of Joachim and Theotiste (Paulhus) Cournoyer - see above]
Albert 1861?, Tweed, ON Matilda Beausoleil
Felix 1863?, Tweed, ON Marie Lebarge
Joseph 1865?, Tweed, ON Clemence Lebarge

Some descendants of Paul and Catherine (Ethier) Cournoyer


Family of Antoine Cournoyer, husband of Angele Latraverse, and Catherine Cournoyer, wife of Noel Cournoyer:

Antoine Cournoyer [Joseph and Louise (Couturier) Cournoyer] and Veronique Tessier [Joseph and Catherine (Cournoyer) Tessier]
Married Nov. 5, 1810, St. Pierre-de-Sorel
Children: Born: Spouse:
Antoine Oct. 10, 1811 Angele Latraverse
Suzanne Jan. 26, 1813 Benoni Salvaille
Marie Aug. 28, 1814 Godefroid Ethier
Esther early 1816? Gilbert Erart
Catherine June 29, 1817 Noel Cournoyer
Tersile Apr. 27, 1819 Joseph Erart
Basilice Oct. 24, 1820 Olivier Valois
Henriette Mar. 10, 1822 died Mar. 22, 1822
Pierre Michel May 13, 1823 Catherine Ethier
Sophie early 1825? Patrice Lavallee
Henriette Oct. 7, 1826 died Feb. 27, 1827
Edwige Feb. 10, 1828 Charles DeBlois
Jean Baptiste Nov. 15, 1829  
Rose de Lima Jan. 29, 1834 Bruno Ethier
Paul Apr. 10, 1837 Marie Bibaud


Family of Noel Cournoyer, husband of Catherine Cournoyer, and Paul Cournoyer, husband of Catherine Ethier:

Pascal Cournoyer [Joseph and Francoise (Cournoyer) Cournoyer] and Marguerite Salvaille [Joseph and Catherine (Antaya) Salvaille]
Married Jul. 25, 1814, St. Pierre-de-Sorel
Children: Born: Spouse:
Noel Oct. 28, 1814 Catherine Cournoyer
Marie Anne Mar. 16, 1816 Pierre Fortier
Gilbert Apr. 8, 1818 died Jun. 21, 1820
Henriette Apr. 2, 1820 Pierre Ethier
Francois Paul Apr. 15, 1822 Catherine Ethier
Marguerite May 31, 1824 died Jun. 22, 1825
Marguerite May 3, 1826 Pierre Paulhus
Des Anges Jul. 10, 1830 died May 5, 1832
Louis Sept. 30, 1832  
Marie Des Anges Sept. 14, 1834 Alexis Brisset
Cyrille Apr. 19, 1837 died Apr. 25, 1837
Marie Odile May 4, 1838 died Nov. 7, 1838
Catherine 1840? died Dec. 28, 1840


Family of Angele Latraverse, wife of Antoine Cournoyer:

Pierre Latraverse [Pierre and Exupere (Couturier) Latraverse] and Catherine Gauthier-Delisle [Michel and Catherine (Cournoyer) Gauthier-Delisle]
Married Sep. 26, 1806, St. Pierre-de-Sorel
Children: Born: Spouse:
Catherine Nov. 9, 1807 Louis Bibeau
Francoise May 25, 1809 Hippolyte Peloquin
Marguerite Mar. 7, 1811  
Angele Mar. 9, 1813 Antoine Cournoyer
Adelaide Feb. 26, 1815 died Mar. 29, 1815
Pierre Mar. 22, 1816 Sophie Millet
Olivier Aug. 1, 1818 Angele Lavallee
Regis Jul. 16, 1820 Sophie Lavallee
Scholastique Sep. 14, 1823 Bruno Rajotte


This family tree information was compiled by Caren (Courneya) Secord, daughter of Gordon and Doris (Webster) Courneya, granddaughter of Felix and Matilda (Brioux) Courneya, great-granddaughter of Simon and Mary (Goulah) Cournoyer, great-great-granddaughter of Antoine and Angele (Latraverse) Cournoyer.