TROTAIN, dit Saint-Seürin (Surin), FRANÇOIS, soldier, settler, court officer, seigneurial attorney, royal notary; b. c. 1634 in the little town of Saint-Seurin-d’Uzet (province of Saintonge), son of François Trotain and Jeanne Gribond; buried 11 Feb. 1731 at Batiscan.
He was a soldier in the Carignan regiment (Naurois’ company) when he landed at Quebec in September 1665. When the troops were disbanded in 1668 he settled in Canada, and he and a regimental comrade, Pierre Roberol, dit Morin, rented the land of Pierre de La Garde at Batiscan for two years. Roberol withdrew in 1670, and on 14 Nov. 1673 Trotain bought the partly cleared land which had been granted to Michel Pelletier, Sieur de La Prade. The Jesuits, who owned the seigneury, and who detected in Trotain a choice recruit, paid two-thirds of the cost of this land. Trotain was soon a seigneurial attorney and court clerk. He also became a notary; indeed in his first known act, that of 19 March 1687, he designated himself “royal notary and tabellion at Cap-de-la-Madeleine, Champlain, Batiscan, and Sainte-Anne, living at Batiscan.” Perhaps he never received a commission granting him the title of royal notary, but the authorities allowed conscientious seigneurial notaries to assume this imposing appellation.
Trotain had married Jeanne Hardy (Ardie), a native of La Rochelle, on 16 Aug. 1668 at Quebec. Five daughters were born of this marriage. He died at Batiscan at the age of 96. One of his sons-in-law, Joseph Rouillard, who had married Marie-Charlotte in 1715 inherited his post of notary and his registry.
AJTR, Greffe de François Trotain. Jug. et délib., VI. Vachon, “Inv. critique des notaires royaux,” RHAF, X (1956–57), 381. J.-B.-M. Barthe, Analyse des actes de François Trotain, notaire royal, gardenote au Cap de la Madeleine, Champlain, Batiscan et Sainte-Anne (Trois-Rivières, s.d.). J.-E. Roy, Histoire du notariat, I, 203f. Régis Roy et Malchelosse, Le régiment de Carignan.