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Did You Know? What is a 'dit/dite' name?  When the first settlers came to Canada from France it was a custom to add a 'dit' nickname to the surname. The English translation of 'dit' is 'said'. The Colonists of Nouvelle France added 'dit' names as distinguishers. A settler might have wanted to differentiate their family from their siblings by taking a 'dit' name that described the locale to which they had relocated. The acquiring of a 'dit' name might also be the result of a casual adoption, whereby the person wanted to honor the family who had raised them. Another reason was also to distinguish themselves by taking as a 'dit' name the town or village in France from which they originated. This custom ended around 1900 when people began using only one name, either the 'dit' nickname or their original surname.

Source: American-French Genealogical Society, Woonsocket, Rhode Island (

Did You Know?Quebec - Did you know? Habitants spent the wintertime cleaning and repairing tools and tending the animals. In spring they planted crops, took animals to pasture, and fixed fences. They ploughed the land with a team of oxen, then seeded it. They also cultivated a vegetable garden. In summer the entire family worked in the fields from sunrise until sunset. In late summer, they harvested grain crops and took them to the seigneur’s mill for grinding. In the autumn, they put up preserves, chopped and stacked firewood, brought in animals, butchered and salted the meat, which they put into barrels, and prepared the soil for next season’s crop.

Source: Elspeth Deir et al., Canada: The story of our heritage, Grade 7 (Whitby, ON: McGraw-Hill Ryerson, 2000)

Over time, Quebec has gone through a series of name changes.

From its inception in the early 1600s until 1760, it was called Canada, New France
1760 to 1763, it was simply Canada
1763 to 1791 - Province of Quebec
1791 to 1867 - Lower Canada
1867 to present - Quebec, Canada

Thanks to Micheline MacDonald for providing this information.

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immigrant France  Michel-Masson  Theodore dit Gilles

  (b. 24 March 1631, France   d. 4 May 1664Montréal, Canada, New France )  

Michel-Masson Theodore dit Gilles was born 24 March 1631 in , France. Michel-Masson Theodore dit Gilles was the child of

Michel-Masson was an immigrant to Canada, arriving by 1658.

He married  Jacqueline Lagrange 16 September 1658 in Montréal, Canada, New France .  The couple had (at least) 2 children. Jacqueline Lagrange  was born 1 July 1641 in , France .  She died 3 August 1688 in Montréal, Québec, Canada . 

Michel-Masson Theodore dit Gilles died 4 May 1664 in Montréal, Canada, New France .

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Marriage / Partner(s) and Child(ren)

Michel-Masson Theodore dit Gilles married immigrant Fille a Marier France Jacqueline Lagrange-- Date: 16 September 1658 Place: Montréal, Canada, New France Quebec Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection) [database on-line]. Original data: Gabriel Drouin, comp. Drouin Collection. Montreal, Quebec, Canada: Institut Généalogique Drouin. 

Marriage record found at Notre-Dame de Montreal, Quebec in Drouin Collection

Michel Theodore and Jacqueline Lagrange
Updated: 4/23/2009

Canada/New France Marie-Barbe Theodore dite Gilles (b.04 December 1660 , Montréal, Canada, New France   d. aft. 23 December 1682, Montréal, Canada, New France )

Canada/New France Jeanne Theodore dite Gilles (b.8 August 1663, Montréal, Canada, New France   d. 9 June 1730, Rivière-des-Prairies, Montréal, Canada, New France )

Lifetime Events

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24 March 1631
, France

France 1635 - France enters Thirty Years War as an active combatant. Franco-Spanish War begins.

France 1638 - King Louis XIV born in France
History of France : Highlights from Louis XIV to Napoleon

Thunderworks ( -

France 1643 - King Louis XIII dies, Louis XIV assumes French throne

1658 Marriage / Partner
Michel-Masson Theodore dit Gilles and Jacqueline Lagrange 16 September 1658, Montréal, Québec, Canada

Canada 1659 - François de Laval arrives in Québec as vicar general of the pope (June). about/ links/ resources/ canadian-history/ prehistory-to-1800.html -

Canada 1660 - Adam Dollard des Ormeaux and about sixty others withstand an attack by over 500 Iroquois at Long Sault (May). It is traditionally said that the small party fights so well that the Iroquois decide not to attack Montréal. about/ links/ resources/ canadian-history/ prehistory-to-1800.html -

1660 Birth of Child
Marie-Barbe Theodore dite Gilles was born 04 December 1660 , Montréal, Québec, Canada

Canada 1663 - Québec becomes a royal province. The first Filles du roi (Kings Daughters) arrive in New France during the summer
In 1663, the King Louis XIV took over direct control of the government of New France, making it a Crown colony with Québec becoming a Royal Province. Royal governors and other officials replaced...Read MORE...

1663 Birth of Child
Jeanne Theodore dite Gilles was born 8 August 1663, Montréal, Québec, Canada

4 May 1664
Montréal, Québec, Canada


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