CADIEUX, LOUIS-MARIE, Roman Catholic priest, school administrator, author, and vicar general; b. 7 March 1785 in Montreal, son of Louis Cadieux and Madeleine Serre; d. 13 June 1838 in Rivière-Ouelle, Lower Canada, and was buried there two days later.
Louis-Marie Cadieux was engaged in secondary studies at the Collège Saint-Raphaël in Montreal from 1798 to 1806. He then went to the Séminaire de Nicolet, and there, while studying theology, taught in succession from 1807 until 1810 the third, fifth, and sixth years (Method, Belles-Lettres, and Rhetoric). He received the tonsure on 22 Jan. 1807 and minor orders on 31 July 1808. The seminary’s superior, Jean Raimbault, who was parish priest of Saint-Jean-Baptiste at Nicolet, was impatient to see his protégé ordained, and in January 1810 told Bishop Joseph-Octave Plessis* that Cadieux was “mature, of the required age, and . . . as well prepared as he will be in six months in both learning and piety, and if ever there was a reason for advancing a deadline . . . , we have one here, I believe.” Plessis did not share Raimbault’s eagerness and did not ordain Cadieux until 26 August, in the church of Baie-du-Febvre (Baieville). Upon his ordination Cadieux was appointed director of the Séminaire de Nicolet, a post he held until leaving Nicolet in 1813.
That year Cadieux was sent as parish priest to La Nativité-de-Notre-Dame at Beauport, near Quebec, where he worked for six years. In 1819 he was appointed curé of Immaculée-Conception at Trois-Rivières. At first he refused to move to the town, convinced that “nothing is more contrary to my character and my ways than having so much to do . . . with people of a certain quality.” He was the more opposed to being transferred since large sums had just been put into repairing the presbytery at Beauport, but in the end he accepted the appointment.
Cadieux began his ministry upon his arrival in Trois-Rivières, and he soon obtained the office of superior of the Ursulines located there; he carried on both functions until 1835. In addition he was interested in journalism and contributed to the short-lived Ami de la religion et du roi, which Ludger Duvernay* was publishing. It was Duvernay who in 1823 brought out the pamphlet Observations sur un écrit intitulé “Questions sur le gouvernement ecclésiastique du district de Montréal”, now known to have been written by Cadieux. In it Cadieux refuted assertions made by Augustin Chaboillez*, the parish priest of Saint-Antoine at Longueuil, who opposed the creation of a new bishopric in Montreal. But readers were uncertain of the authorship of the text. Indeed, Bishop Plessis was long considered its author – a view not wholly wrong, given that he made more than 144 changes in the draft Cadieux sent him before publication. Two years later Cadieux returned to writing, with a memoir proposing that in light of the dilapidated state of the building housing the Séminaire de Nicolet, the seminary be relocated at Trois-Rivières, in a former château owned by the government which had been turned into a barracks. Although it was persuasive, the memoir had little impact and failed to sway the religious authorities, who entertained no thought of such a move.
At the time of his appointment as vicar general of the diocese of Quebec on 20 Feb. 1833, Cadieux was having some difficulty in administering his parish. The leading citizens of Trois-Rivières had insisted upon their right to participate in electing the chairman for the meetings of the fabrique. Cadieux had rejected these claims, and his refusal led to the creation of a new council of the fabrique from which the parish priest was excluded. The quarrel was resolved, but there were after-effects, which showed up in the financial problems that Cadieux was encountering. On 16 Aug. 1834 he complained to the archbishop of Quebec, Joseph Signay, that the fabrique was irregular in its payments of sums owing him and that since coming to Trois-Rivières he had used up his entire patrimony. In the same letter he asked to be transferred to the parish of Sainte-Anne at Varennes, which paid better. Cadieux was then being seriously considered for the office of auxiliary to the archbishop of Quebec in Montreal. He refused the offer of this post, and although 400 parishioners signed a petition to keep him at Trois-Rivières, in September 1835 he accepted appointment as parish priest of Notre-Damede-Liesse at Rivière-Ouelle. There he was to become a founding member of the corporation of the Collège de Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pocatière.
No sooner had Cadieux been installed at Rivière-Ouelle than he asked Signay for permission to erect a new presbytery suitable for a vicar general, since, as he stressed, his parishioners were prepared to put up a fine, large building. Unfortunately he had little time to enjoy his new quarters, for he died on 13 June 1838. In his will he left everything to the corporation of the Séminaire de Nicolet, on condition, however, that it pay his sister, Rose Cadieux, an annuity of £25 for the rest of her life. The corporation refused the legacy, considering it disadvantageous. By the terms of Cadieux’s will his estate went to the corporation of the Collège de Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pocatière instead.
Louis-Marie Cadieux is the co-author with J.-O. Plessis of Observations sur un écrit intitulé “Questions sur le gouvernement ecclésiastique du district de Montréal” (Trois-Rivières, [Qué.], 1823). He also wrote, in 1825, “Mémoire de M. Cadieux pour la translation du séminaire de Nicolet aux Trois-Rivières,” which is reproduced in Douville, Hist. du collège-séminaire de Nicolet, 1: 173–76.
AAQ, 1 CB. ANQ-M, CE1-51, 7 mars 1785. ANQ-Q, CE3-1, 15 juin 1838. ASN, AO, Polygraphie, I-IV; Séminaire, II: 78–81; lettres de Mgr Plessis à Jean Raimbault, I, 1806–11; II, 1811–15; lettres des directeurs et autres à l’évêque de Québec, 1804–6; Transfert du séminaire de Nicolet, boîte 1, no.1; AP-G, L.-É. Bois, D, 4; G, 3, 6, 9. ASTR, 0123. L’Ami de la religion et du roi (Trois-Rivières), juin–septembre 1820. Allaire, Dictionnaire. F.-M. Bibaud, Le panthéon canadien (A. et V. Bibaud; 1891). Caron, “Inv. de la corr. de Mgr Panet,” ANQ Rapport, 1933–34, 1934–35, 1935–36; “Inv. de la corr. de Mgr Plessis,” ANQ Rapport, 1927–28, 1928–29; “Inv. de la corr. de Mgr Signay,” ANQ Rapport, 1936–37, 1937–38, 1938–39. Desrosiers, “Inv. de la corr. de Mgr Lartigue,” ANQ Rapport, 1943–44. Wallace, Macmillan dict. Hervé Biron, Grandeurs et misères de l’Église trifluvienne (1615–1947) (Trois-Rivières, 1947). Chabot, Le curé de campagne. Douville, Hist. du collège-séminaire de Nicolet. P.-H. Hudon, Rivière-Ouelle de la Bouteillerie; 3 siècles de vie (Ottawa, 1972). Wilfrid Lebon, Histoire du collège de Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pocatière (2v., Québec, 1948–49). Lemieux, L’ établissement de la première prov. eccl. Maurault, Le collège de Montréal (Dansereau;1967) . Les ursulines des Trois-Rivières depuis leur établissement jusqu’à nos jours (4v., Trois-Rivières, 1888–1911). Yves Tessier, “Ludger Duvernay et les débuts de la presse périodique aux Trois-Rivières,” RHAF, 18 (1964–65): 387–404, 566–81.