MSS-020-Hélène’s World-part 1

Maple Stars and Stripes fleur-de-lis logoHave you ever thought of taking your research and writing the stories of your ancestors? If you haven’t yet, what’s stopping you? Time? Don’t know where to start? Can’t read French?

Author Susan McNelley will take us on her journey, one that resulted in the publication of Hélène’s World: Hélène Desportes of Seventeenth-Century Quebec. Hélène is the ancestor to many of us, yet her story encompasses the lives of the other early settlers as well. Learn the history of Québec through the eyes of one who lived in that time and place. Susan also gives some tips for those thinking of writing their own ancestors’ stories.

In Langauge Tip #20, we learn the pronunciation of the letter combinations AIN and IN and how that affects the sound of /d/ that we discussed in episode #19 ( Annie Sargent from the Join Us in France podcast and her husband David lend a helping hand.

For links to websites mentioned in this episode, check out the Show Notes at

MSS-019-World Acadian Congress 2014

Maple Stars and Stripes fleur-de-lis logoOnce arriving back to the eighteenth century, many French-Canadian researchers will find an Acadian or two in their ancestry. That is because, after the deportation, some of these unfortunate folks escaped to or returned to French-Canadian settlements and eventually intermarried.

Every five years a celebration of Acadian heritage takes place in a venue with close ties to our Acadian ancestors. Last month, many events were held over a 2-1/2 week period in New Brunswick, eastern Québec province, and northern Maine. Lucie LeBlanc Consentino, an Acadian descendant herself, attended these festivities and gives us a first-hand account of the events in which she participated. Lucie is well-known for her information-packed website, Acadian and French-Canadian Ancestral Home.

In Language Tip #19, we look at the connection between a maiden name and a swear word as we discuss the sound of the letter ‘D.’ Don’t forget to check out the show notes at

MSS-018-The American-Canadian Genealogical Society

Maple Stars and Stripes fleur-de-lis logoNew Hampshire saw a large influx of French-Canadians in the 19th century, and the American-Canadian Genealogical Society and its library have helped many descendants trace their roots back to Québec. President Jim Gaudet fills you in on the history and happenings of the ACGS.

Then in Language Tip #18, you’ll learn how knowledge of French hypocorisms, or diminutives, can help in your research.

Don’t forget to check out the Show Notes at

MSS-017-French-Canadian Repertoires

Maple Stars and Stripes fleur-de-lis logoThanks to the hard work of hundreds, if not thousands, of volunteers across Canada and the United States, those of us who were researching our French-Canadian ancestors a decade or two ago were very grateful to have a multitude of repertoires at our disposal. Once we discovered to which parish our ancestors belonged, these repertoires were a crucial first step in filling out our family trees.

They can still be useful today as we take a look at repertoires, including the various configurations adopted by genealogical and historical societies who undertook these massive projects.

Then in Language Tip #17, we explore the sound of OU in French and how to use that understanding to locate your ancestors.

Be sure to visit the show notes for this episode at

Enjoy, and happy ancestor hunting!

MSS-016-The History behind the Geography

Maple Stars and Stripes fleur-de-lis logoWhen entering data into your genealogy database, have you ever asked yourself: Do I enter Nouvelle France or Canada? Is St-Charles the parish or the village? Where is the Pays d’en Haut? With the help of our guest Suzanne Boivin Sommerville, we will attempt to answer some of your questions as we explore the history behind the geography.

Then in Language Tip #16 we discuss the meaning and use of Sainte, Saint, St., Ste., St-, and Ste-.

Join us for an information-packed episode, and check out the show notes at