BLANCHARD, GUILLAUME, early settler on the Petitcodiac River; b. at Port-Royal (Annapolis Royal, N.S.), 1650; son of Jean Blanchard and Radegonde Lambert; d. 1716.
In 1672 Guillaume married Huguette Gougeon, daughter of Antoine Gougeon and Jeanne Chabrat. They had 12 children between 1674 and 1698. In July 1698, Blanchard and two of his sons joined Pierre Tibaudeau on the latter’s second expedition to the Chipoudy (Shepody) River. The Blanchards, sailing in their own boat, explored the Petitcodiac before returning to Port-Royal in the autumn. In the summer of 1699 they returned to the Petitcodiac and established a small settlement, known for a time as “Village des Blanchard,” probably near the present site of Hillsborough, N.B. Blanchard returned again the next year, and in 1701 he left two sons, a daughter, and her husband to spend the winter on the Petitcodiac.
Legal suits had been threatened by Claude-Sébastien de Villieu on behalf of his father-in-law, Michel Leneuf de La Vallière (the elder), resident at Beaubassin, who claimed the Chipoudy and Petitcodiac settlements as part of his seigneury. A declaration of 1703 by the Conseil d’État, repeated in 1705, confirmed the settlers in the possession of their land, but also stated that La Vallière was to have seigneurial rights over the land. La Vallière’s successful claim destroyed the settlers’ hope of obtaining seigneurial rights for themselves and their descendants. The Blanchard family continued to grow, and numerous Blanchards, probably descendants of Guillaume, were enumerated among the more than 300 Petitcodiac settlers in 1752.
AN, Col., B, 27, f.153; C11D, 3, ff.225–26; 4, ff. 178–83; 5, ff.81–83 (copies in PAC); Section Outre-Mer, G1, 466 (Recensements de l’Acadie, 1671, 1686, 1693, 1698, 1700, 1701 ; copies in Archives de l’université de Moncton). PANS, MS docs., XX. Rameau de Saint-Père, Une colonie féodale, I, 239, 243–47, 254, 267–69; II, 333–37. Ganong, “Historic sites in New Brunswick,” 316.