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Filles du Roi


Between 1663 and 1673, 768 Filles du Roi or "King’s Daughters" emigrated to New France under the sponsorship of the French government as part of the overall strategy of strengthening the colony until it could stand on its own without economic and military dependence on France.

In 1663, the King took over direct control of the government of New France and initiated an organized system of recruiting and transporting marriageable women to the colony. On September 22, 1663, thirty-six girls –the first group of Filles du Roi– arrived in Québec.

The recruiting of Filles du Roi took place largely in Paris, Rouen and other northern cities by merchants and ship outfitters. A screening process required each girl to present her birth certificate and a recommendation from her parish priest or local magistrate stating that she was free to marry. It was necessary that the girls be of appropriate age for giving birth and that "they be healthy and strong for country work, or that they at least have some aptitude for household chores."

The cost of sending each Fille du Roi to New France was 100 livres: 10 for the recruitment, 30 for clothing and 60 for the crossing itself. Upon arrival, the Filles received suitable clothing and some provisions.

All of the Filles du Roi first landed at Québec City where 560 remained, with 133 being sent to Montréal and 75 to Trois-Rivières.

When selecting a Fille du Roi, the suitor looked beyond outward appearances and considered the practical attributes of a bride that would be adapted or disposed to the rigors of the colony. The preference seems to have been for peasant girls because they were healthy and industrious, as opposed to city girls who were often considered lightheaded and lazy.

Every Fille du Roi had the right to refuse any marriage offer that was presented. In order to make an informed decision to accept a would-be husband, the girls asked questions about the suitor’s home, finances, land and profession. Having a home of one’s own was one of the most important considerations for a Fille du Roi.

In addition to any dowry of goods that the bride may have brought with her from France, each couple was given an assortment of livestock and goods to start them off in married life: a pair of chickens and pigs, an ox, a cow and two barrels of salted meat. The King’s Gift of 50 livres is believed to have been a customary addition to the dowry, but only 250 out of 606 known marriage contracts make reference to an additional dowry given by the King. Once married, there was an incentive to have large families. A yearly pension of 300 livres was granted to families with ten children, rising to 400 livres for 12 children and more for larger families.

In September 1673 the last shipment of Filles du Roi arrived from France, and the program ended. The population of New France had risen to 6,700 people, an increase of 168% in the eleven years since the program had begun.

Source: Peter J. Gagné, King’s Daughters and Founding Mothers: The Filles du Roi, 1663-1673, (Pawtucket, RI: Quinton Publications, 2001)


Histoire du Québec 6 - Les Filles du Roi (in French)


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Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie COIGNARD (1643, Rouen, France - 22 May 1715, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Perrine COIRIER (1644, , France - 18 December 1714, Charlesbourg, Québec, Québec, Canada (Bourg Royal))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie COITEL (COIPEL) (1646, Paris, France - 4 January 1681, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Anne COLIN (COLLIN) (1647, Champagne, France - 29 July 1719, Saint-Jean-de-l'Île-d'Orléans, Québec, Canada (Saint-Jean))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Denise COLIN (COLLIN) (1651, Paris, France - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie-Rose COLIN (COLLIN) (1642, Burgundy, France - 5 May 1722, Montréal, Québec, Canada (Sault-au-Récollet) (Côte-St-Michel) (Côte-St-Paul))
(Pierre COLIN & Jeanne DUPOSTEAU)

Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Jeanne COLLET (1645, , France - 8 May 1691, Montréal, Québec, Canada (Sault-au-Récollet) (Côte-St-Michel) (Côte-St-Paul))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marguerite COLLET (COLLETTE) (1653, Paris, France - 11 June 1730, Varennes, Québec, Canada (Sainte-Anne-de-Varennes))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Antoinette COMPAGNON (1645, , France - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Françoise CONFLANS (1649, , France - 28 February 1728, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie-Catherine COTTIN D'ARRAS (1645, , France - 29 March 1690, Charlesbourg, Québec, Québec, Canada (Bourg Royal))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie COUET (24 January 1633, Rouen, France - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Françoise COUSIN (1640, Paris, France - 19 December 1714, Charlesbourg, Québec, Québec, Canada (Bourg Royal))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Anne COUTURE (1642, , France - 13 May 1715, Saint-Laurent-de-l'Île-d'Orléans, Québec, Canada)
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Isabelle COUTURIER (1650, Paris, France - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Charlotte COY dite COUET (1649, , France - 12 May 1707, Montréal, Québec, Canada (Sault-au-Récollet) (Côte-St-Michel) (Côte-St-Paul))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie CRÉPIN (CRESPIN) (1637, Normandie, France - 1688, Lachine, Montréal, Québec, Canada (Saints-Anges-de-Lachine))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Elisabeth CRETEL (1649, Rouen, France - 27 May 1704, Neuville, Portneuf, Québec, Canada (Saint-François-de-Sales))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie CROISET (2 July 1651, St-Pierre, Marennes, France - 30 June 1716, La-Pérade, Québec, Canada (Sainte-Anne-de-la-Perade))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Jeanne CROSNIER (1645, Paris, France - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Martine CROSNIER (1645, , France - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Françoise CURÉ (1643, Grévillers, Arras, Pas-de-Calais, France - 19 January 1709, Boucherville, Québec, Canada (Sainte-Famille-de-Boucherville))
D
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Anne D'AILLY (DAILLIER) (1634, , France - 19 January 1704, Château-Richer, Québec, Canada (La Visitation-de-Notre-Dame de Chateau-Richer))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie DAIN (1641, , France - 1709, , Québec Province, Canada (Quebec))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie DALLON (DAILLON) (1646, Saint-Pierre-d'Oleron, Saintonge, France - 7 July 1716, Saint-Michel-de-Bellechasse, Québec, Canada)
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Denise DAMANÉ (1641, St-Jean-en-Greve, Paris, France - 22 September 1704, Champlain, Québec, Canada (Notre-Dame-de-la-Visitation))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Claude DAMISÉ (1643, , France - 6 October 1705, Montréal, Québec, Canada (Sault-au-Récollet) (Côte-St-Michel) (Côte-St-Paul))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie DAMOIS (1649, , France - 20 December 1708, Neuville, Portneuf, Québec, Canada (Saint-François-de-Sales))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Helene D'AMOURS (1646, Paris, France - 24 July 1699, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie-Anne-Esther DANNESSÉ dite DE LEONGCHAMPS (, , France - 2 May 1689, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Gabrielle D'ANNEVILLE (1651, , France - 12 October 1728, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marguerite D'AVIGNY (DAUBIGNY) (1653, Paris, France - 2 November 1705, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie-Catherine DE BAILLON (1645, , France - 27 January 1688, Rivière-Ouelle, Québec, Canada (Notre-Dame-de-Liesse))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie DE BEAUREGARD (1645, St-Germain-l'Auxernois de Paris, France - 24 October 1715, L'Islet, Québec, Canada (L'Islet-sur-Mer) (Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Catherine DE BELLEAU (1639, , France - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie-Madeleine DE BIDEQUIN (1645, , France - 20 May 1711, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Catherine DE BOISANDRÉ (1643, Caen, France - 15 February 1685, Saint-Laurent-de-l'Île-d'Orléans, Québec, Canada)
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Jeanne-Claude DE BOISANDRÉ (1635, , France - 24 July 1671, Sainte-Famille-de-l'île-d'Orléans, Québec, Canada)
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Nicole DE BONIN (1645, , France - 24 October 1711, Batiscan, Québec, Canada (Sainte-Geneviève-de-Batiscan) (Saint-François-Xavier))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie DE BRETIGNY (1640, - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Françoise DE CHARMESNIL (MESNY) (24 May 1651, Rouen, France - 1717, Trois-Rivières, Québec, Canada (Three Rivers))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Claude DE CHEVRAINVILLE dite LAFONTAINE (1645, Paris, France - 22 January 1691 , Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
(Jacques CHEVRAINVILLE dit LAFONTAINE & Marguerite Leonarde BAUDON)

Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie-Madeleine DE CHEVRAINVILLE dite LAFONTAINE (1650, Paris, France - 19 May 1733, Sorel, Québec, Canada (Saint-Pierre))
(Jacques CHEVRAINVILLE dit LAFONTAINE & Marguerite Leonarde BAUDON)

Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie-Charlotte DE COPPEQUESNE (1641, Feuquières-en-Vimeu, Picardie, France - 8 November 1706, Montréal, Québec, Canada (Sault-au-Récollet) (Côte-St-Michel) (Côte-St-Paul))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Jeanne-Marie DE GUESNEL (1644, Autheux, France - , , Québec Province, Canada (Quebec))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Apolline DE LA FITTE (1647, La Chapelle, évêché de Laon, Picardie, France - 17 September 1685, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Marie DE LACOUR (1644, Paris, France - , )
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Françoise DE LACROIX (1640, Paris, France - 12 October 1711, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Elisabeth DE LAGUÉRIPIÈRE (1638, Paris, France - 12 April 1723, Québec, Québec, Canada (Quebec City))
Fille du Roi  female ancestor  Jeanne DE LAHAYE (1647, Paris, France - 1670, , France)
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