Jacques Goulet: Canadian pioneer (1615 - 1688) | Biography, Facts, Information, Career, Wiki, Life
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Jacques Goulet
Canadian pioneer

Jacques Goulet

Jacques Goulet
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro Canadian pioneer
Was Pioneer
From Canada
Gender male
Birth 17 April 1615, Normandel
Death 26 November 1688, Quebec City (aged 73 years)
Jacques Goulet
The details (from wikipedia)


Jacques Goulet (April 17, 1615 – November 26, 1688) was a pioneer in the Percheron immigration movement to colonize the shores of the St. Laurence River at Québec in New France (now Québec, Canada), a miller and the ancestor of virtually all of the Goulets in North America.

Early life

Thomas Goulet, the father of Jacques Goulet, lived in Normandel in the ancient French province of Perche as early as 1612. The baptismal records of Saint-Maurice-lès-Charencey, a community two miles east of Normandel, document the birth of René Goulet on May 30, 1613 to Charles Goullet and his wife Suzanne. It is likely that Charles Goullet is the brother of Thomas Goulet.

Thomas married Antoinette Feillard on April 28, 1613 in Normandel's St-Firmin church.

The notarial records of the region document that on April 6, 1615, Thomas Goulet purchased a gray horse from Robert Giguère, a merchant from Tourouvre, for 25 livres. Eleven days later, Jacques was born in Normandel on April 17, 1615. Jacques, the eldest of three children, had two sisters Louise born on January 17, 1619 and Yvonne, born on May 25, 1622.

Goulet worked as a miller for Noël Juchereau on his farm, Les Chatelets in L'Hôme-Chamondot, France in 1645. His father Thomas, also worked as a miller in L'Hôme-Chamondot in 1632, possibly at the same mill.

Goulet married Marguerite Mulier, the daughter of Jean Mulier and Catherine Chauvin, on November 21, 1645 at St. Pierre Church in La Poterie-au-Perche, France.

Immigration to New France

St. Firmin Church in Normandel, France where Jacques Goulet was baptized and his parents, Thomas and Antoinette were married.
St. Pierre Church in La Poterie-au-Perche, France where Jacques Goulet married his wife Marguerite Mulier a few months before moving to Québec
Parish record of Jacques Goulet's birth on April 17, 1615
Parish record of Jacques Goulet's death on November 26, 1688. Note his age is listed as 75 years, resulting in a discrepancy with his recorded date of birth.
Moulin du Petit-Pré (Little Meadow Mill) commissioned in 1695 for the Séminaire de Québec under Mgr François de Montmorency-Laval's direction (by then in his simple priest capacity).

Noël Juchereau, a Company of One Hundred Associates investor, recruited Goulet along with other Percheron workers, to migrate to New France as 'engagés', which typically culminated in an option to exchange a 3-to-5 year work contract for land. No engagement contract for Goulet were ever found because he had gone to work for sieur Noël Juchereau Deschâtelets as his miller.

In the spring of 1646, Goulet and his wife Marguerite sailed from La Rochelle for New France. In September or October, they arrived at Québec with 73 other immigrants on one of a fleet of four ships: the 300 ton Cardinal, the 150 ton Saint-Sauveur (or Neuf), the 50 ton Petit Saint-Christophe and the 250 ton Notre-Dame (destined for Montreal). In 1646, there were only around 1,000 colonists in Canada.

Life in Canada

Shortly after arriving at Québec, Goulet's wife Marguerite gave birth to their first child, Geneviève, on October 28, 1646. Geneviève died about six weeks later. She was buried on December 14, 1646.

Goulet was employed by Noël Juchereau, until Juchereau died in 1648, soon after returning to France.

In December 1651, Goulet acquired land with a half arpent of frontage in the cove of St. Michel near Sillery, Quebec City. He later sold the property along with another property with one-and-a-half arpents of land to Simon Legendre for 200 livres on December 26, 1655.

In Château-Richer, Goulet owned land consisting of six arpents of frontage.

 He sold this property to partners Jacques Dodier and Pierre Pointel on November 30, 1656. On March 4, 1657, Dodier gave the property back to Goulet who then sold it to Lauzon de la Citière for 860 livres, a significant sum. 

On May 30, 1658, Olivier Le Tardiff, seigneur and judge for the côte de Beaupré, gave Goulet land previously owned by his son, Pierre, who had died unexpectedly. The land consisted of three arpents of frontage on the St. Lawrence river, near the stream Ruisseau des Originaux.

As of 1667, Goulet was farming 15 arpents of land and had five head of cattle. By 1681, he had double the amount of land. He also owned a gun and one of the fewer-than- 100 horses in the entirety of Canada.

From 1673 to 1676, Goulet worked as a miller at the mills of the seigneurie de Beaupré, Château-Richer's wind mill and the water mill of Sault à la Puce. He was also a miller at the water mill at Petit Pré (pictured) until at least 1682.

1666 Census of New France
1667 Census of New France
1681 Census of New France


Jacques and Marguerite had 11 children, of whom five died or were not recorded in subsequent census records because they did not marry.

  • Geneviève: October 28, 1646 - December 14, 1646
  • Nicolas: December 14, 1647 - August 24, 1721; married Sainte Cloutier on November 24, 1672.
  • Jacques: April 9, 1649 - 1666.
  • René: October 27, 1650 - July 28, 1717; married Catherine Leroux on October 29, 1672.
  • Louis: August 26, 1653 - 16; married Marie Godin on July 8, 1682.
  • Charles: 1656 - November 10, 1717; married Marie-Anne Rancin on November 11, 1686.
  • Thomas: March 24, 1660 - February 19, 1728; married Marie-Marguerite-Louise Pancatelin on October 25, 1683.
  • Francois: 1664-1665.
  • Antoine: August 20, 1666 - February 4, 1712; married Madeleine Guyon on February 19, 1692.
  • Joseph: March 27, 1669 - May 5, 1741; married Jeanne Julien on July 20, 1692.
  • Marguerite: June 27, 1675 - 1680.
  • Parish Records of Québec (in French) 
  • Dictionnaire généalogique des familles du Québec, Réné (1983). Le texte scientifique. (in French). Montréal: Les Presses de l'Université de Montréal. ISBN 9782760606456. 
  • Tanguay, Cyprien (1871). TANGUAY Dictionnaire Généalogiques des Familles Canadienne. Montreal. 


Jacques Goulet died November 26, 1688 and was interred in the church cemetery at L'Ange-Gardien two days later. The church records incorrectly record his age as 75, when in fact, according to the original baptismal record from Normandel, France, his age would have been 73.

In 1694, Goulet's estate was inventoried. It consisted of one plow, more than 700 sheaves of wheat, two horses, 10 head of cattle, three pigs, 10 chickens, a stone house, a barn, a stable, 33 arpents of cleared land and various other items.

There is a plaque at the St. Pierre Church in La Poterie-au-Perche that commemorates Goulet and his half sister, Louise. The plaque reads "A Jacques Goulet né le 17 Avril 1615 a Normandel et Louise Goulet née a La Poterie le 26 Juillet 1628 epouse de René Le Tartre partis de La Poterie pour Le Canada. 'Je me souviens.'" This translates in English to "To Jacques Goulet born on April 17, 1615 in Normandel and Louise Goulet, born in La Poterie on July 26, 1628, wife of René Le Tarte, left La Poterie for Canada. 'I remember.'"

Name variations

In France, the name Goulet is alternatively spelled Goullet. Other variations include Goulé, Gollet, Goulain and Goulaine.

In Canada and the United States, other name variations have evolved including Goulette, Goulait, Goullet, Desgoulets, Duplessis, Gooely, Gooley, Goula, Goulat, Goulah, Goulin, Gooler and Mathurin.

Newspaper article from The Winnipeg Tribune


Goulet once owned a flute that had been passed down from generation to generation. A brief history of the flute was written about in an article in The Winnipeg Evening Tribune - June 7, 1934. The last person to have possession of the flute was Robert Leon Goulet (1890-1955). It is not known what happened to the flute after Robert died. In June 2015, descendants of Jacques Goulet's, including the great grandson of Robert Leon Goulet, attempted to locate the flute, but was unsuccessful. In an attempt to locate the flute, the descendants of Goulet have created FindTheFlute.com

Notable descendants

  • Actor Éric Bernier
  • Actor and Producer James Haven
  • Actress and Producer Marcheline Bertrand
  • Artist Joe Fafard
  • Métis Leader Elzéar Goulet
  • Author George R. D. Goulet
  • Politician Maxime Goulet
  • Singer Robert Goulet
  • Singer Shania Twain
  • Actress Angelina Jolie
  • Prime Minister Louis St Laurent

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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