CLASH BETWEEN THE GOVERNOR AND THE INTENDANT
AFTER THE DEATH OF BISHOP SAINT-VALLIER
RESULTING IN THE RECALL OF THE INTENDANT
THE ORIGINAL PROCLAMATION, READ AT CHURCH DOORS EIGHT TIMES
BEAUHARNOIS DE LA BOISCHE, Charles de, marquis de Beauharnois, 1671-1749, seigneur of Villechauve, officer in the colonial troops, governor general of New France, lieutenant general of the naval armies. D.s., Quebec, 8 March 1728. 1 p. oblong lge. folio (372 x 470 mm), and notes on verso. Professionally restored with Japanese tissue paper on both sides. Provenance: Judge Camille Pouliot.
De par le Roy.
Charles marquis De beauharnois Chevalier De l’ordre militaire de st Louis gouverneur particulier Des ville et chasteau de quebec, gouverneur et lieutenant general pour le roy en toute la nouvelle france.
Nous avons vû avec un extreme deplaisir cequi s’est passé en cette colonie depuis la perte quelle a faite de monsieur l’eveque de quebec et nous avons eté tres Surpris d’apprendre par des voyes indirectes que le conseil superieur de cette ville Se fust attribué le droit de connoitre et de decider Souverainement de matieres d’autant plus delicates et dangereuses qu’elle interesse tout le costé ecclesiastique de ce pays sans avoir Sçu de nous qui occupons pour le roy la premiere place de cette Compagnie, quel est notre Sentiment Sur la conduite qu’elle avoit a tenir, et sur les mesures qu’il convenoit prendre dans une affaire de cette importance, le conseil ne peut ignorer les ordres de Sa majesté qui y ont eté enregistrez, par lesquels il luy est deffendu de faire aucuns reglements generaux qu’en presence du gouverneur general et de l’intendant nous avions lieu de nous flatter que dans des matieres daussy importantes et aussi extraordinaires que les sont celles dont il est question il n’auroit pas pris des Resolutions aussi vives que celles qu’il a prises sans nous avoir auparavant demandé notre avis. nous esperions aussi que cette compagnie informée du mauvais effet que ses arrests multipliés faisoint dans tous les esprits se porteront a cesser ses poursuites et a attendre la decision de Sa majesté sur des matieres aussi douteuses et aussi contestées ainsy que le conseil Superieur a fait du tems de nos predecesseurs dans des affaires moins importantes et moins delicates. cette compagnie Si Sage et Si Soumise aux ordres du roy Voudroit elle aujourdhuy les ignorer pour nous derober la connoissance du parti qu’elle a pris de continuer ses procedures et de Soutenir un ouvrage quelle se repent peut estre d’avoir commencé enfin nous apprenons que lundy dernier premier de ce mois, elle a rendu un arrest contre le Sieur boulard curé de quebec (que le chapitre de cette ville a nommé vicaire general du diocese) et que cet arrest (qui ne tend pas a moins qua attenter a la personne du Sieur boulard) jette un trouble general dans la colonie, et excite des murmures dont nous ne Sentons que trop les dangereuses consequences et comme il est de notre droit de prevenir les suites facheuses qui pourroient sen suivre, et d’employer a cet effet toute l’autorité qu’il a plu a Sa majesté de nous confier pour arrêter le cours d’une procedure aussi contraire au repos public et au bien de la colonie
Nous Deffendons de la part du roy aux officiers du conseil Superieur de quebec de recevoir des apresent au[cu]nes requete ou requisitions ny aucunes Reponses de la part des parties citées, et de rendre directement ny indirectement aucun arrest sur les matieres en question; et nous suspendons de la meme autorité, lexecution de toutes ordonnances ou arrets cy devant rendus sur cette matiere, jusquàcequ’il ait plu a Sa majesté d’en ordonner deffendons pareillement au greffier, d’en ecrire, et expedier, et aux huissiers, archers, ou autres, d’en signifier, publier, ny afficher aucuns de ceux qui ont été cy devant Rendus a ce Sujet. Sous peine de desobeissance, nous imposons Silence sur toutes ces matieres auSieur delanouillier conseiller faisant les fonctions de procureur general depuis le deceds du sieur collet, jusqu’a cequ’il ait plu a Sa majesté de faire Sçavoir Ses intentions Sur le tout. voulons que notre present ordre Soit posté au conseil Superieur au premier jour d’assemblée pour y etre lû par l’un de nos Secretaires a haute et intelligible voix et ensuite publié a Son de tambour et affiché en tout lieux ou il Sera necessaire tant dans cette ville de quebec, qu’en celles des trois Rivieres, et montreal, et par tout ailleurs, ou nous le jugerons a propos aceque personne nen pretende cause dignorance En foy deqouy nous avons signé le present ordre et a iceluy fait apposer le Sceaude nos armes et contresigner par l’un de nos Secretaires. fait a quebec le huit mars mille Sept cent Vingt huit.
[countersigned:] Par Monseigneur, Demonceaux [?]
[footnote:] lüe et publiéé jssüe de messe paroissialle à nostre dame de bonsecours à haute et Jntelligible voix ce jourdhuy dix neufiesme mars 1728 par moy soussigne ayde major des compagnies de la coste du sud
[signed:] francois guimon
lue et bubliéé [sic] jssüe de messe paroissialle aucape saint jgnace a haut et intelligible voix ce jourdhuy vinteunieme de mars 1728 par moy soussigné ayde major des compagnie de la coste dusud
[signed:] francois guimon
[in different hand:] Lu et Publié Lordonnance de Monseigneur legeneral Sydessus Issue degrande messe paroissiale par moy a voy intelligible en prezence de tous les habitans asemblés a la paroisse de sainte Anne par moy ce 29e mars 1728
[signed:] jeanneau [?]
[verso:] lue et publié la presante Issue demesse paroisialle alaparoisse de St loüis De Camourasca ahaut et intelligible voix ce jourdhuy le quatriemme avril lan milsept cans vingt huit par moy soubsigné
[signed:] gabriel paradis capitaine de milice
Lüe Et publiée jssue de messe paroissialle a la Paroisse StThomas point ala caille a haute et jntelligible voix cejourdhuy onzieme avril mil Sept cent vingt huit
Lüe et publier issüe de messe paroissialle a la coste de Belle chasse Nostre Dame de La sommetion ce 18 d’avril mil sept cent vingt huit
[signed:] Noel Beaupré, Joseph Le Mieux capitaine de Milisse
Lue et publiée jssüe de Messe paroissialle ala Coste deLadurantai de Sinvalié se jourdui Le vente senque avri lan mille Sept cans vinhuit par Moy Sousigiené
[signed:] Jacques Corivaux Capitenne des millices
Leu publie et a fiche la [words: presente ordonnance, added at bottom] dimanche deuxieme jour du mois de may jssue de la grande messe paroissialle de St Estienne de beaumont ala Réquisition du Sieur Couture de bellerive Capne de la ditte paroisse par moy
[signed:] M f Ernay; D Menager [with flourish]
By the King.
Charles marquess of Beauharnois, Knight of the Military Order of st Louis, special Governor of the City and Castle of Quebec, Governor and Lieutenant-General for the King in all of New France.
We have noticed with extreme displeasure what has happened in this colony since the loss it has sustained of the Lord Bishop of Quebec and we have been very surprised to learn circuitously that the Superior Council of this City has ascribed itself with the prerogative to know and to decide independently over matters most delicate and dangerous since they concern the ecclesiastical aspect of this country, without being informed by us, who are taking here on behalf of the King the first place on that body, what our opinion is about the conduct the Council had to follow, and the measures it was proper to take in a matter of such importance. The Council cannot ignore His Majesty’s orders which have been registered there, where it is stated that this body is forbidden to make any general rules except in the presence of the governor general and of the intendant. We had reason to believe that in matters as important and as extraordinary as the ones concerned, the Council would not have made Resolutions as strong as those that were made without having asked our advice previous to doing so. We also hoped that this body, once informed about the nefarious consequences its multiple decrees were having on all minds, would have halted its pursuits and would have waited for the King’s decision on issues as ambiguous and as contested as the Superior Council has done at the time of our predecessors for matters of lesser importance and of a less delicate nature. Would that August body, usually so subservient to the King’s orders, today ignore them and take away from us the knowledge of the part it has taken by continuing its procedures and by supporting an undertaking which it maybe regrets to have started. Finally, we have learned that last Monday, the first of this month, it has rendered a decree against Sieur Boullard, parish priest of Quebec (whom the chapter of that city has appointed vicar-general of the diocese) and that this decree (which is no less than libelous to the person of Sieur Boullard) creates a general stir in the colony, as well as mutterings whereof we know only to well the dangerous consequences, and since it is our right to forestall the detrimental consequences which might result therefrom, and to use to that effect the full authority which it has pleased His Majesty to confer us with, and to arrest the current of a procedure as contrary to the public peace and the well-being of the colony.
In the name of the King we forbid the officers of the Superior Council of Quebec to receive from now on any requests nor claims nor any answers on behalf of the parties mentioned, and to render directly nor indirectly any decree about the matters in question; and under the same authority we suspend the execution of all ordinances or decrees heretofore rendered on that matter, until it will have pleased His Majesty to ordain on the matter. We equally forbid the registrar to write down and register any, and to the bailiffs, archers, or others, to notify, make public, nor post any decrees rendered earlier on this subject. Under penalty of disobedience, we impose silence on all these matters to Sieur de Lanouillier, councillor acting Crown Attorney since the death of Sieur Collet, until it will have pleased His Majesty to inform us of His intentions on the subject. We desire that our present order be posted at the Superior Council on the first day of assembly to be read there by one of our Secretaries in a loud and intelligible voice and afterwards made public to the beat of the drum and posted in all places where necessary as much in this city of Quebec as in those of Trois-Rivières and Montreal, and anywhere else where we will consider it proper, so that nobody pretends to ignorance thereof. Witness whereof we have signed the present order and have apposed thereto the Seal of our Arms and countersigned by one of our Secretaries. Drawn up at Quebec the eight of March one thousand seven hundred and twenty-eight.
[countersigned:] Par Monseigneur, Demonceaux [?]
[footnote:] read and made public at the end of the parochial mass at Notre-Dame de Bonsecours in a loud and intelligible voice today nineteenth March 1728 by me undersigned deputy-major of the companies of the South coast.
[signed:] francois guimon
read and published at the end of the parochial mass at Cap Saint-Ignace in a loud and intelligible voice today twenty-first March 1728 by me undersigned deputy-major of the companies of the South coast.
[signed:] francois guimon
[in different hand:] Read and published the ordinance of Monseigneur the general abovementioned at the end of the high parochial mass by me in a loud and intelligible voice in the presence of all the ‘habitants’ assembled at the parish of Sainte-Anne by me this 29th March 1728
[signed:] Jeanneau [?]
[verso:] read and published the present at the end of the parochial mass at the parish of St. Louis of Kamourasca in a loud and intelligible voice today the fourth of April in the year one thousand seven hundred and twenty-eight by me undersigned.
[signed:] gabriel paradis captain of militia
Read and published at the end of the parochial mass at the parish of St. Thomas, Pointe à la Caille, in a loud and intelligible voice today eleventh April one thousand seven hundred and twenty-eight
Read and published at the end of the parochial mass at the Côte de Bellechasse, Notre-Dame de la Sommation, this 18th of April one thousand seven hundred and twenty-eight.
[signed:] Noel Beaupré, Joseph Le Mieux captain of Militia
Read and published at the end of the parochial mass at the Côte de Ladurantaye de Saint-Vallier today the twenty-fifth April in the year one thousand seven hundred and twenty-eight by me undersigned
[signed:] Jacques Corivaux Captain of militia
Read and published and posted the present ordinance Sunday second day of the month of May at the end of the high parochial mass at St. Étienne de Beaumont upon request of Sieur Couture de Bellerive Captain [of militia] of the said parish by me
[signed:] M f Ernay; D Menager [with flourish]
“There was probably an incompatibility of temperament between governor Beauharnois and intendant Dupuy; but it must certainly be admitted also that they were diametrically opposed both by their origin and their professional training. Dupuy spent his life in the magistracy and came from a bourgeois family, for whom the king’s service was something new; that is why the intendant, at every turn, made it known that he had served His Majesty such and such a number of years; he even went so far as to identify his ideas and wishes with those of the sovereign. Bishop Saint-Vallier, who had died during the night of 26 Dec. 1727, had chosen intendant Dupuy as his executor. The latter took his role very seriously. Early on the morning of 26 December, he affixed seals to the bishop’s possessions, transmitted the seals of the diocese, the emblems of authority, to the canons, and proclaimed the beginning of the regale. For their part the canons, having met immediately, elected Étienne Boullard as capitular vicar. On 31 December a dispute broke out in the chapter as to who should preside at the funeral, which had been set for 4 January, Chartier de Lotbinière maintained that this honour belonged to him, in his capacity as archdeacon. Boullard, as capitular vicar, claimed it for himself. Lotbinière conceived the unfortunate notion of taking the dispute to the intendant, who summoned the canons for 2 January. The latter, questioning his authority in matters of ecclesiastical discipline, refused to appear. Dupuy was extremely annoyed at this. He then made a strange decision: as it had been reported to him that the canons wanted to remove the bishop’s body to transport it to the cathedral and bury it there, contrary to the bishop’s last will and testament, he decided to advance the date of the funeral. Without warning anybody, either among the clergy or the congregation of Quebec, he ordered Lotbinière to proceed forthwith — it was early afternoon on 2 January — with the interment of the bishop, which the archdeacon did, before the astonished eyes of the nuns and paupers of the Hôpital Général. Boullard reacted immediately: he placed the chapel of the Hôpital Général under interdict and deposed the mother superior. Dupuy replied at once that these acts were invalid; first because Boullard had not shown his letters of appointment, and secondly because in any case his election was worthless, since he had just discovered that there was a coadjutor in France who had automatically taken office. Thus began the battle between the chapter, led by Boullard, and the Conseil Supérieur, directed by Dupuy. The January and February meetings of the council were almost entirely given over to violent, impassioned speeches by the intendant against the canons and particularly against Boullard. The affair came to such a pass that the governor considered it his duty to intervene. He came in person to the Conseil Supérieur and forbade the intendant to arraign Canon Boullard, despite the writ that had been issued shortly before. This intervention did not convince Dupuy, who challenged the governor’s authority in legal matters and countermanded his orders. The wrangling continued in this way until the end of May. These dissensions had created a great stir in the colony. The clergy had become divided. Several officers had to make a difficult choice between two authorities whose orders were contradictory. This all caused great wonderment among the people. The king was quickly informed of events. At the end of January the canons, with the governor’s connivance and despite the intendant’s veto, sent one of their members as a representative to Paris via New England. The latter reached Versailles before the end of May, and a few days later it was decided to recall the intendant.” (DCB).
GUIMOND, François, 1690-1773, was aide-major, 1721, and major of the côte du Sud from 1732 to 1760.
GARNEAU, Louis, was lieutenant of militia at Ange Gardien in 1760.
PARADIS, Gabriel, 1675-1755, was militia captain of Kamouraska; he had married Marie-Anne Côté.
CÔTÉ, Jacques, b. 1708, was lieutenant of the first company of militia of Saint Thomas in 1760
BONHOMME dit BEAUPRÉ, Noël, 1684-1755, was militia captain of Beauport.
LEMIEUX, Joseph, 1688-1756, militia captain at Berthier or Bellechasse after 1721; born at Cap Saint Ignace, he married in Quebec, in 1712, Elizabeth Franquelin.
CORRIVEAU, Jacques, b. 1671 at the parish of Sainte-Famille (Ile d’Orléans), in 1693, married, at Saint Michel (De La Durantaye), Françoise Gaboury; he was captain of militia there from 1702, even though he was only 31 years old; militia captains usually were over 50, and often over 60 years of age. In 1721 he was militia captain of the parish of Saint-Jacques (De La Durantaye) and in 1737 he was lieutenant of militia of La Durantaye. In 1728 he married for a second time, at Quebec, Marie Madeleine Larchevêque.
COUTURE DE BELLERIVE, Eustache, b. 1667, was militia captain at Vincennes (Beaumont) from 1713-1729; in 1713 he was present at Bécancour’s survey of the royal road of Vincennes, and in 1729 at Saint Simon’s inquest for the new road of Vincennes; on both occasions he declared not to know how to sign; therefore the above document was read by others.