VOLANT DE RADISSON, ÉTIENNE, Montreal merchant and surveyor; baptized at Trois-Rivières, 29 Oct. 1664, son of Claude Volant de Saint-Claude, merchant, and Françoise Radisson; d. 14 June 1735, near Montreal, without issue. His older twin brothers, the Abbés Claude and Pierre Volant de Saint-Claude, were among the first pupils to enter Bishop Laval’s Petit Séminaire.
In Sorel on 9 Dec. 1693 Volant married Geneviève Letendre, the widow of Jean-François-Xavier Pelletier, who had been killed by the Iroquois the previous year. In 1694 he received a grant of islands in Lac Saint-Pierre near Sorel as a fief and seigneury.
As royal surveyor he undertook, between 1697 and 1704, some cadastral surveys in and about Montreal. By 1699 he was established in commerce in that city. In 1701, at the time of Cadillac’s [Laumet] journey to Detroit to establish a fort there, Volant was hired by Jean Bochart de Champigny to accompany him as storehouse keeper. Volant made another voyage to Detroit in 1703, and returned the following year. He then became one of the important merchants of Montreal, conducting his business from his two-storey residence on Rue Saint-Paul. When this building was gutted in the great fire of 1734, Volant moved to his farm on the nearby côte of La Visitation, where he died the next year. At that time he was colonel of the town militia in Montreal and general agent there for the Compagnie des Indes.
AJM, Dossier Radisson, Procès-verbaux d’arpentage; Greffe de François Lepailleur, 3 juillet 1735; Registre des audiences, 19 juin 1699, 29 juillet 1700, 10 mars 1702; Registres d’état civil de Notre-Dame de Montréal, 1735, 7. AN, Col., B, 17, f.368; C11A, 61, ff. 144, 150. P.-G. Roy, Inv. concessions, IV, 92–94. Massicotte, “Répertoire des engagements pour l’Ouest,” 206, 208. P.-G. Roy, Hommes et choses du fort Saint-Frédéric (Montréal, 1946), 240f.