Zacharie Cloutier (c1590-1677)

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Zacharie Cloutier (c. 1590 - September 17, 1677) was born in Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Mortagne (Perche), France. Cloutier was a French carpenter who emigrated to New France in the first wave of the Percheron Immigration, settled Beauport, Quebec and started one of the foremost families in Quebec.

Life in New France Edit

Cloutier was one of the first Frenchmen recruited by Robert Giffard de Moncel to expand the colony of New France by settling the Beauport area near Quebec City. Cloutier arrived in 1634 (at the age of 44) and either arrived with or was soon followed by his family. This was an important addition to the colony's population which numbered about 100 prior to his arrival. Cloutier worked with fellow emigre Jean Guyon du Boisson to construct Giffard's manor house (the oldest house in Canada) and other colonial buildings.

Cloutier and Guyon resisted for several years paying the fielty and homage owed to Giffard under the Seigneurial system of New France until the Governor of New France explicitly ordered them to do so. This was one of the first disputes against transplanting Old World hierarchy to the New World that would carry through the centuries even past the time of the British conquest.

Eventually, Cloutier's relationship with Guyon, who was also his neighbour, deteriorated to the point that Cloutier sold his land and moved to Château-Richer, where Governor Jean de Lauzon granted him land.

He died in 1677 at age 87.

Marriage and Children Edit

Zacharie Cloutier married Sainte Dupont on July 13, 1616 in Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Mortagne (Perche), France. With her he fathered five known children:


(Please see article, Descendants of Zacharie Cloutier and Sainte Dupont)

Zacharie is recognized as the ancestor of the Cloutiers, one of the foremost French-Canadian families. By 1800, Cloutier had 10,850 French-Canadian descendants -- the most of any Quebec colonist -- according to marriage records studied by the Historical Demography Research Program of the Université de Montréal.

Zacharie Cloutier is a common ancestor of Madonna, Celine Dion, Shania Twain, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Alanis Morisette, and Angelina Jolie.


In 1972, a house originally built and lived in by Cloutier is reconstructed and named a provincial heritage site.

In 1984, a monument was erected in Beauport to commemorate the 350th anniversary of Cloutier's arrival.


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