The Family of Pierre Benoit

At some point, likely in the late 1840s or very early 1850s, Pierre Benoit arrived in Bay St. George. Based on the church records and the census records for Bay St. George, Pierre was born about 1835 in France, which means that he most likely arrived in Bay St. George via the French fishing fleet, which frequented the West Coast fo Newfoundland at that time. Pierre was one of the many young frenchmen that jumped ship, to escape the misery of the french fishery. They were considered desserters by the French, but were now free.

The first mention of Pierre Benoit in the records is when Pierre is a Godparent at the Baptism of John Young on January 21, 1851. Pierre was about 16 years old at that time. He would sponsor 3 more children bt 1855.

“Les Acadiennes de Terre-Neuve”
by Thomas W. Leblanc published : 15 April 1948

Paul Longuépée, married to a Decosta, crossed over to Newfoundland in a launch without bridge. He had as crew members his wife, two children, Marie-Anne and Louis, who was crippled. Paul Longuépée settled in Flat Bay, where his sister was married to Germain LeBlanc. Marie-Anne Longuépée married Pierre Benoit from Flat Bay, close to St. George’s and became grandmother and great grandmother to one hundred Benoit from Flat Bay and elsewhere. Louis Longuépée died very young. The precise date of the arrival of Paul Longuépée in Newfoundland is unknown, but it was probably about 1850. He came from Mabou, near Port Hood, Cape Breton.

Pierre Benoit and Marie-Anne Longuépée were married at Sandy Point on November 17th, 1857. Their first child Thomas was born on 22 October 1858. Over the next 20 or so years, Pierre and Anne-Marie would have 10 more children. It is believed that the family lived in Flat Bay.

Thomas Benoit – born 22 Oct 1858
Jean Baptiste Benoit – born 12 Aug 1860
Paul Benoit – born 6 May 1862
Peter Benoit – born 28 Oct 1864
Joseph Benoit – born 19 Oct 1867
Elizabeth Benoit – born 23 Nov 1869
Susan Benoit – born 27 Feb 1871
Frederick Benoit – born 26 Jul 1873
Mary Ann Benoit – born 18 Apr 1876
William Benoit – born 26 Jul 1873
David Benoit – born 1 Mar 1880

Lovell's Newfoundland Directory - 1871

Lovell’s Directory for Bay St. George included just two settlements, Sandy Point on the south side of the inner bay and Indian Head on the north side of the inner bay.

Sandy Point is described as;

“The chief settlement in the St. George’s Bay. The place is built on a low flat and, mountains at the back. The herring fishery is carried on here to a large extent, and forms the principal occupation of the people. The fishing is carried on by nets only, seines being prohibited by general consent. Distance from Cape Ray 65 miles by boat. Population 405.

 

Indian Head is described as;

“A fishing station on the French Shore in St. George’s Bay. Distance from Cape Ray 75 miles by boat. Population 230.”

The following families were listed as residents of Indian head.

NAME

OCCUPATION

Alexander, John

fisherman 

Benoit, Constant

fisherman 

Benoit, Frank

fisherman 

Benoit, George

fisherman 

Benoit, John

fisherman 

Bourgeois, Eugene

fisherman 

Chinson, L.

fisherman 

Deluce, Joseph

fisherman 

Doucette, Peter

fisherman 

Furman, Reuben

fisherman 

Gelong, Felix

fisherman 

Hunt, William

fisherman 

Jusseau, Alexander

fisherman 

Luckoo, John

fisherman 

Luckoo, John

fisherman 

March;, Frank

fisherman 

March, John

fisherman 

Quinn, Tassien

fisherman 

Royer, Charles

fisherman 

White, Dominick

fisherman 

White, Gabriel

fisherman 

White, John

fisherman 

White, Marcel

fisherman 

White, Maximilian

fisherman 

White, Modeste

fisherman 

White, Patrick

fisherman 

White, Placid

fisherman 

White, Stephen

fisherman 

Young, Alexander

fisherman 

Young, Peter

fisherman 

A review of the names suggests that the census included the Stephenville area but also included the area that is now Stephenville Crossing. The following names are believed to be residents of what is now Stephenville Crossing:

Name                                Occupation

Alexander, John               Fisherman

Benoit, Frank                    Fisherman

Benoit, George                 Fisherman

Benoit, John                      Fisherman

Lucas, John                        Fisherman

Lucas, John                        Fisherman

McAlpine's Directory 1894-1895-Main River

Name
Alexander, Andrew

Alexander, Adolph

Alexander, John

Alexander, James

Barber, John

Bennoit, Peter
Bennoit, Adolphe

Brake, Edward
Bennoit, Mitchel
Bennoit, George 
Bennoit, Oliver 
Bennoit, Oliver, jr. 
Bennoit, Abra’m 
Bennoit, Peter 
Bennoit, John 
Durall, Charles 
Gillingham, Charles
Hawkins, Andrew
Keefe, James 
Luca, Alexander 
Luca, Alex, jr. 
Luca, John
Luca, John, sr. 
Luca, John M. 
Luca, Ambrose 
McArthur, Alex 
Morrissey, William 
McDonald, Alex 
Newel, Bernard 
Power, Redmond 
Power, Edward 
Perria, Benjamin 
Perria, Charles 
Roberts, John 
Savage, John 
Swyre, James 
Tobin, William 
Young, Joseph jr.