MALHERBE, FRANÇOIS, Jesuit lay brother; b. 1 March 1627 in Saintonge (France); d. 19 April 1696 near Chicoutimi.
François Malherbe arrived in Canada around 1645 as a donné, and set out for the Huron country, where he stayed until this mission was abandoned in 1650. In March 1649 he helped to bring from Saint-Ignace to Sainte-Marie the remains of the martyrs Jean de Brébeuf and Gabriel Lalemant, and to prepare them for burial. After remaining some four years among the Huron refugees near Quebec, he went back to France, to become a Jesuit lay brother in Paris on 30 Dec. 1654. He took his final vows as a temporal coadjutor on 15 Aug. 1655. In 1658 he was already back in Canada, where he was to work for 16 years as an interpreter among the Montagnais and the Algonkins of Trois-Rivières. In 1676 he was sent to Sillery, and in 1682 to the Tadoussac mission. There he gave unstintingly of himself until his death, particularly as a joiner and as a farmer at Saint-Charles, the central post set up near Chicoutimi by Father de Crespieul* to serve as a residence and a supply point for the missionaries and Christian natives of the region. According to what his superiors have written, Brother Malherbe was a very prudent religious, gentle by nature, endowed with a rare patience, and especially fitted for manual tasks.
ACSM, f.400. JR (Thwaites), XLVI, 303. “Lettre du père Crespieul sur le père Malherbe,” BRH, XLVII (1941), 56f. F.-X.-E. Frenette, “Les pères Cocquart et de La Brosse et le frère Malherbe,” BRH, XLI (1935), 416–32. “Ici ont passé: le monument du coteau du Portage,” Soc. Hist. du Saguenay Pub, II (Chicoutimi, 1937), 25–27. A. E. Jones, “ ‘ȣendake Ehen’ or Old Huronia,” PAO Annual Report, V (1908).