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Radegonde Lambert Metis or French and the list of Métis women in Acadie

Radegonde Lambert Metis or French and the list of Métis women in Acadie

Pierre Montour (View posts)
Posted: 1094671941000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1116113278000
The Metis in Acadia

There were no French women to marry before 1634 in Acadia.

The lords Gravé Dupont and Charles De Saint-Étienne de La Tour united themselves according to the Indian way to Natives in 1610. The men of their troops imitated them.

France was chased out of Acadia in 1613. La Tour stayed there with the lord Biencourt and the men of their troop who were united to Natives.

In 1627, La Tour wrote to Cardinal Richelieu that he had formed a group, a Franco-Indian community which kept the territory for France.

France returned to Acadia in 1634. Colonists of strictily French origin landed in Port-Royal between 1634 and 1650 (refer to the role of Saint-Jehan who identified 12 French couples). The French of Port-Royal and the lord Menou d'Aulnay attacked the Franco-Natives and their Metis children at Fort Saint-Jean (St. John) in 1645 in order to take control of the fur trade. They massacred 45 defenders, according to lord Nicolas Denys.

Except for a few exceptions, their native women disappeared forever as well as their Metis children.

In 1653, France is once again chassed from Acadia but the French colonists stay in place.

France returned to Acadia in 1670 and processes a Census at Port-Royal in 1671. This census allowed the identification of colonists who were strictly of French origin having arrived between 1634 and 1650 and persons of francophone family names but of unkown origin.

The past genealogists of Quebec were all at the service of the Canadian Catholic Church which denied the existence of Metis in Quebec, even declaring that they had all died before 1800. Due to the absence of acts, they wrongly presumed that the persons of unknown origin in Port-Royal in 1671 were French men and women who had landed in Acadia between 1653 and 1670, including Radegonde Lambert. Now, this is impossible since France did not send any French colonists in a territory occupied by the English colonists.

These persons were therefore the descendants of Metis children who had survived the attack of Fort Saint-Jean in 1645 and who were brought by force and reeducated at Port-Royal. France had always the habit of reeducating the minor children of its enemies since the preceeding century. It had also reeducated by force the children of French protestants.

For lack of evidence of the origin of a person in North America in the 17th century, the genealogists should not presume that this person is European but Indian or even Metis.

It is a question of a simple presumption which could be reversed with the help of an opposite proof. It is a question also of a deduction made with common sense.

The persons of unknown origin in the Census of Port-Royal in 1671 need to be presumed natives, Indians or Metis. Their behavior demonstrate morever that they are Metis. They intermarried among themselves and found refuge once again at the Saint John River in order to retake the fur trade and to become the leader of native bands which resisted England.

This is why it is so difficult to identify the Metis of Acadia: they were part of the resistance and Catholic Church in Canada and F.X. Gameau, Tanguay, Casgrain, Lionel Groulx and Archange Godbout denied their existence.

Because of a lack of baptismal, marraige and burial acts, historical proof is used to determine the origin of persons. Refer to the texts of the Biorgraphical Dictionary of Canada to understand the history of Acadia. Refer also to information found in the Acadian Archives Center at the University of Monction.

We would not be able to say that Neil Armstrong met an American woman on the Moon if we discover one day descendants on this satellite. Therefore we can not say that the French who landed alone in America in the 17th century met French women who were hanging around there.

Briefly, these first French men uin Acadia united themselves to Natives and their children removed by force perpetuated their memory by keeping their family name.

Pierre Montour
Directeur général
Corporation métisse du Québec

I agree

Joan (View posts)
Posted: 1099423348000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1116113306000
Good for you Pierre ! I agree.

MtDNA to confirm native lines

Posted: 1103502149000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1116113368000
One of my Acadian Couzine's mother was an all female liine to Radegonde Lambert. AC list is discussing MtDNA and other first nation grandmothers. Can anyone point me some good articles or Sites. How can he be tested? Has it been done before?

Paul Le B
in Louisiana

Re: MtDNA to confirm native lines

Posted: 1116113691000
Classification: Query

Yes it has been done before... this test however is gender limited... meaning if the presummed full blood native ancestor is female, than online a female descendant from a direct all female line can be tested... if the ancestor is male, than only a direct male descendant can be tested.

Having test done on descendants of different children of the first metis ancestor is also highly recommanded, since parents on records are not always the real parents of a child and that can cause a false negative.

For more information, see the DNA board or one of the DNA mailing lists.

Re: MtDNA to confirm native lines

Posted: 1266883799000
Classification: Query
Radegonde Lambert has been tested through several direct line female descendants and her mtDNA has consistently been shown to be X2b. This haplogroup is European and not Amerindian. I direct you to

Re: MtDNA to confirm native lines

Posted: 1352565705000
Classification: Query
Hi Paul:

How's Toronto life? I still don't need a lawyer--but Metis organizations are gearing up for a large land claim battle, that might be an opportunity for an aggressive individual in the field of law!!

DNA today is absolutely accurate for someone in a lineage with aboriginal/(recessive European) markers, however, it cannot differentiate between a European/(recessive Native) hybrid and someone who is in a "pure" European haplogroup. DNA testing today in Canada can only verify half of someones origin---leaving out (or eliminating) recessive Native markers. (Maybe someone will solve this problem in future with markers from a full genome test)
There is a great deal of bias in the website you linked. She's a nice (US)lady with Acadian ancestry but denies that people before 1635 Acadia were all Metis and swears by genealogical use of DNA testing. I asked her to qualify her findings with the use of the word "suggested" instead of "proof" of origin. She didn't. Makes me wonder how biased she is!
For discussion of the validity of present day DNA testing see my blog:


Re: MtDNA to confirm native lines

Posted: 1352568282000
Classification: Query
There are those who will reject fact, no matter how the evidence, be it DNA, historical, or otherwise, because they have a fantasy that they wish to perpetuate, be it political or ethnic or otherwise.

Within mtDNA testing, there is no such thing as recessive markers. It is simply direct matrilineal descent. The fact that you posit such in the blog referred to shows an lack of understanding of genetics.

For one to posit an Amerindian heritage for Radegonde and many others, one has to posit a complex (and exceedingly unlikely in the historical circumstances) lineage for a person. It is a complete violation of Occam's razor and the burden of proof.

Lastly, I do not consider someone who relies on scientific testing by experts in the field of population genetics as biased (such as the woman that you referred to) any more that I consider someone who goes to a doctor instead of a mechanic to perform an operation as biased against mechanics.

As for the word "proof", there is no such thing in science. It exists only in math. We cannot prove parentage by DNA testing. But, the tests so strongly "suggest" parentage, that we use DNA testing for paternity and even to sentence people to death in murder cases. In a courtroom, it would be considered proof beyond a reasonable doubt. It would be more proper to state that DNA testing "suggests" with an accuracy of 99.9999% rather than "proves". But, that is just being pedantic.

Re: MtDNA to confirm native lines

Posted: 1352580743000
Classification: Query
Hey Paul don't get excited!

I'm not questioning DNA as an accurate legal tool concerning live people ie. to prove, for example, paternity!

I'm simply pointing out that DNA inheritance rules are great for the direct descendants of at least one ancestor on the lineage. But if the result is European, it doesn't mean that the other half wasn’t native--hence something is hidden or recessive. If your not aware, geneticists are regularly finding new markers (or genes) and reevaluating their earlier findings. (DNA in genealogy falls short of revealing both sides of a North American and European hybrid--hence it’s invalid for genealogy for disproving a Native heritage---if the test indicates a European haplogroup).

So you know, I made an inquiry to FTDNA and got a reply. I`m pretty sure it was Lucie, though it was signed 'Watson'. (And she is a nice lady) The project site is:
No academic qualification was given ie. BSc etc. etc..
I was told that essentially the Vikings did not have intercourse with the Vikings in the 300 years or so of contact with them so they could not have affected the gene pool---The reason: they were converted to Christianity etc etc. Seems biased to me knowing very well the historical characteristics and customs of the Vikings!

So, in reference to Radegonde Lambert who`s origin is unknown the least number of assumptions is that she is from Europe? But the alternative is just as valid since it also is the least number of assumptions! As far as “burden of proof” a great deal of circumstantial evidence is now being accumulated that “points” more to an indigenous ancestry than a European one.

Great communicating with you!


Re: MtDNA to confirm native lines

Posted: 1352635084000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1352635742000
Hi Roly (et al.),

I've been reading this thread, and I thought that I would add my comments. As a prefatory note, I want to make a few things clear. First is that I am unbiased. I have no particular interest in Metis origins, and don't think it is likely that I have this heritage. So I am happy to let the chips fall where they may. Second is that I am Ph.D. in biochemistry (since Roly expressed concern in his prior message that no academic qualification is given). I don't think any qualification is necessary in this case - either you know what you are talking about, or you don't - but for those who think it is important, you can read about mine here:

Third is that I am the RootsWeb List Administrator for the mtDNA list. Fourth is that my wife has a similar situation, in that she has Native American ancestry, but her mtDNA is European.

So, with that introduction, let me make a few brief remarks:

1. A European mtDNA profile demonstrates that a person is not full, 100% Native American. But that is not proof that the person is ZERO percent Native American.

But it is important to realize that if you go back the necessary generations such that you consider 256 ancestors, even if 255 of them are Native American, that ONE that is the purely female line must STILL be European. And it must be a female.

So, in this context, who could the female European ancestor have been.

2. There are DNA tests that show input from all lines. It is called an autosomal test. FTDNA sells one called the Family Finder. 23andMe sells one called the Relative Finder. And Ancestry sells one too.

I suggest that if multiple people can be found with common descent among this group that they take the autosomal test, identify which DNA segments came from this population, and then compare those segments to other populations to see their origins.

3. It is important to realize terms of art. In the case of DNA the word "recessive" has a specific meaning. It has to do with phenotypic expression, and doesn't have ANYTHING to do with ancestral origins being hidden. For example, in humans there are the alleles regarding blood groups. Type O is recessive. But there isn't anything hidden about it. In fact it is the most predominant type. And whether it is hidden in any sense depends on the other allele(s) present.

So I suggest you stop using the word "recessive" (or hidden) when you are talking about DNA, lest people think you mean the term-of-art recessive that others will understand you to be meaning when you are talking about DNA. Instead, just use the word unknown.

In this case, the one line is European. The others are unknown. But the European lineage isn't hiding the others.

4. You didn't contact FTDNA. You contacted the volunteer admin for the project.

5. The Viking input could be tested by the autosomal test I mentioned.

6. So far, from the claims made about the DNA that I have seen, there is no evidence that the origin is Native American. All the evidence suggests European ancestry. However, Roly rightly points out that this evidence only applies to ONE line out of...however many lines you want to consider. The person could be 255/256ths Native American. But so far there is no DNA evidence (that I have seen) to support that contention. There is only evidence that the person must be at least 1/256ths European, at the 256 ancestors level.

7. The burden of proof is on the person making the assertion. There is no burden of proof on the other side. One need not support with evidence their contention that is GREATER THAN that in support of the original contention. So if the contention is that "She's Native American", then a complete, logical refutation of that is "No she isn't", as long as the origin assertion does not provide evidence that she is Native American. The idea the she MAY be Native American, and that proof is "hidden" is essentially equal to "the dog ate my homework"-level of proof. However, if the contention is "she is NOT Native American", then the burden is to prove it, else the counter side can equally just say "yes she is". Here the proof is on a negative however, and is not expected to be proved any more than one could prove the Loch Ness Monster does NOT exist. Even if you drained Loch Ness and found no monster, one could still argue that the monster flopped his way into the woods somewhere "hidden" where she will remain until the water comes back, etc. So in this case, the only logical burden remains on the person suggesting Native American ancestry, and I have seen no evidence of that. But I have seen evidence, though not incontrovertible, that she is not Native American.


Re: MtDNA to confirm native lines

Posted: 1352729059000
Classification: Query
Hi Gregg

Thanks for your constructive feedback! Your scientific focus could never be mistaken for bias. Hypnotizing and theorizing is certainly not bias since discovery of the truth is the real goal. My focus is primarily social. My university majors were Anthropology, English and Education. I haven’t continued with graduate studies, though I’ve been thinking about it, of late.

I agree with you that on DNA use only—a European haplogroup result, on it’s own, points convincingly to a non-aboriginal ancestry, but it’s still inconclusive in Canada until more evidence surfaces. I would rather use the words “invalid” or “incomplete” with the qualifier “in Canada for exclusive ‘proof’ of origin in genealogical research”. (or something similar).

The term “recessive” or “hidden” was inapt. But it seems that way and most people would understand what I was saying, even if technically incorrect. It’s difficult to explain the idea that “proof” of Aboriginal ancestry is inconclusive with a European haplogroup result if it’s not qualified. Most websites, do not explain this. For example, Lucie’s “FTDNA Acadian Mothers project”, and her website’s ttp:// use of DNA to “prove” European origin (along with support from Steven White’s academic rationality) is, to me, a misuse of DNA in genealogy. If she had used “suggested” or “points to” other than “proof”, I would have nothing to say.

I understand your argument concerning “burden of proof”. It seems that most Aboriginal organizations in Canada use this approach to exclude membership. I usually refuse to seriously debate with anyone on any aspect of genealogy that has not yet been determined from factual historical records, especially where ancestral origin of a person is “unknown”as in the case with Rangonde Lambert. I simply agree to disagree. (Though I like to play the devil’s advocate sometime). I do take exception when someone uses the word “proof” when there actually isn’t any—or fabricate data or make illogical conclusions that may eventually affect anyone’s self determination. All to often in Canada the assumptions and inferences of historians and genealogists have been quoted as evidence against Aboriginal membership as though it was an incontrovertible truth. A DNA test, up to now, relating to a specific distant ancestor is, from my perspective, also questionable “proof” though your autosomal test suggestion is intriguing. But I’m not yet convinced.

Are you saying that an autosomal test will provide a percentage of Aboriginal ancestry if present (outside of direct lineage); or is this a future determination based on a greater benchmark sampling of a known Canadian population; as in a status Aboriginal population in Newfoundland?

Unlike the US, the political climate in Canada is coming to a boil concerning Aboriginal rights. At some point there may be a legal battle (or not) between Aboriginal groups seeking rights, self government, and/or Federal status. It is imperative that the use of DNA and questionable logic does not complicate membership.

I believe in self determination, oral history and historical social customs far more than genealogy and related sciences to determine personal identity. I have made it my final life’s work at age 72 to encourage people to pursue a cultural association of their choice, according to our charter of rights, without superfluous hindrance from anything or anyone.

I hope you can, at the very least, tolerate my social perspective (or bias). It’s not an exact science!

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