Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
This study of the transmission of land was intended to verify whether or not the egalitarian rules of the "Coutume de Paris" were followed. A stability at the level of the cadastre suggested this was not the case and this could have important implications for our understanding of pre-Conquest rural society. The inheritance appeared to be the heart of the man/land relationship and a key element in the way a father used his land to ensure his family's permanence and to establish his children. The methods of transmission, identified from notary acts, were studied against the background of the genealogical tract of the families of l'Ile-aux-Coudres in the XVIIIth Century, traced through nominative sources such as genealogies and parish registers. The research was thus done at the scale of the lot, the individual and the family and it required a triple inventory: of the families, the cadastre and the transmission. The results were analyzed in the light of the inhabitants' economic activities, the events of their life cycle, the Seminary of Quebec's seigneurial policy, the geographical context and the "Coutume de Paris". Our study revealed the major impact of the latter. Of the three types of alienations--donation, division and sale--the first is particularly significant. It implies the "rapport" and thus follows the customary rules. It aims at ensuring the parents' subsistence and settling the children. Accompanying the marriage of the latter, it is utilized by the first generation of settlers before pressure on the land and lack of space is really felt. The role of the father is significant: he chooses the inheritor. Moreover, his presence ensures persistence on the island, although other factors--initial situation, size of farm and quality of the land, and participation in fishing activities--are also important. The aim of this research was to increase our knowledge of rural society in the past by using nominative, seigneurial and judicial documents. The author trusts that this objective has been attained.
Desjardins-MacGregor, Louise, "La transmission du patrimoine a l'Ile-aux-Coudres au dix-huitieme siecle" (1992). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 3606.