Forum Newsletter … June 2001


Editor: Jan Dorn

Co-Editor: Jean Guy Lacoursiere

Member of the Month Column: Marlyss Hernandez

Query Reporter: Nickie Cheney

Trivia & Humor: "Chippewa Falls Finest", Dot Giessler

Translators: Alain Gariépy, Jean Guy Lacoursiere & André Dufresne


Detroit/Windsor Reunion Updates … Reminders for those going to Canada.

A Trip Down Memory Lane

June's FMOTM … J.G. LaCoursiere

An Interview with Ron Rivard … May's FMOTM

Spring Street … A Short Story of George Rivard

Canadian Horses

New Members Join the Rivard Family

Forum News & Topic Highlights

Gossip ??? … Tall Tales Straight from the Horse's Mouth

Interesting & Helpful Research URL's

The Rivard Kitchen … Delicious Batter Recipes for Deep Fried Foods

A Little Bit of Trivia

A Little Bit of Humor

The Editor's Corner


Reminders for those going into Canada

There isn't much new in the way of reunion updates from Tom Dufour this month. His computer was damaged by an electrical storm. By the time he was able to replace it and had a chance to check forum messages they were numbered at 1,900 and climbing. It was at that point that he said to himself, "Self … forget this mess! If someone needs reunion information they can contact me direct." Well … those weren't his exact words, but the only ones we could put in print. As a reunion reminder you may want to consider the following if you plan on attending the Detroit/Windsor reunion in July.

Be sure to check with your auto insurance carrier to see if your auto will be covered while driving in Canada. If you're renting a car stateside the same holds true. Check with the car rental agent for additional coverage should it be a necessity.

If you are using any prescription drugs be sure to take them in the original bottles. This will save hassles crossing the border and make it possible to get a refill in Windsor if it becomes necessary and/or help if medical treatment is necessary while in Canada.

The currency rate is different between the US and Canada. MAM recently posted the following URL to check with the rate changes daily. You may want to exchange some currency before leaving the states. You can use American Dollars in Canada, but may not always get the correct change back. If you purchase something in Canada and or pay for a service, keep your receipts. Some of the taxes paid may be refundable. You should be able to change your currency at your local bank. Some Auto Clubs also provide this type of service for it's members.

Calculates the conversion with today's exchange rate.

Last, but not least … If you haven't sent your money to André for the BBQ, please do so ASAP.



"Souvenirs & Reminiscences From Trois Riviéres"

Shared by André Dufresne

For most of those who were lucky enough to attend the Rivard Rendezvous 2000 (RR2K) in Trois-Rivières, it was an event to remember & cherish, full of great encounters and fun moments.

Here are a few that I would like to share with you :

It all started a few days before RR2K, when Marlyss came to Montréal to search the archives. We had agreed that she would come to my house in the northern suburbs, about 30 miles from her downtown hotel. The only way to get to my house is to travel on different highways where, I am told, driving habits differ somewhat from those on the Florida Panhandle backroads… But –lo and behold – Marlyss made it alive both ways! Of course, she was a little tense (or should I say excited?) but we had a wonderful evening.

Johanne and I arrived in Trois-Rivières around 8 PM on Friday night, after most guests had already arrived, met and even had supper. The hotel lobby was empty so we were walking towards a large tent where, we had been told, we would find many Rivards. As we were about halfway to the tent, suddenly, out of nowhere it seems, there was this cute lady coming straight to me, looking me in the eyes, smiling from ear to ear. Somehow, we both knew who the other was : « André ? » asked the lady… « Mary Ann? », I replied… And I got this typical Rivard hug from our Mother Superior, whom I had been longing to meet in person.

On Sunday, a ceremony was held in Batiscan for the unveiling of the Rivard commemorative plaque at the Old Rectory. The man who had paid for the plaque and who was making the speech was none other than Jim Rivard, one of the founders of the International Association of Rivard Families, whom I did not know, and whom I had never met before. I listened to his speech with attention and the ceremony went smoothly. Months later, I discovered that Jim had broken an ankle just hours before, and he did all this walking around and a stand-up speech, on a broken ankle.

I was in for a really big surprise while in Batiscan. My research led me to believe that Nicolas Rivard built two different houses on his land just beside the Old rectory : the first one in 1668 on the river front and a second, newer house around 1695, on higher land closer to the Old Rectory. This land is still being farmed and when the crop is harvested, a small mound can be seen where, presumably, Nicolas’ house once stood. What I did not know is that René Lévesque, perhaps Québec’s best known archaeologist, had made a superficial search of the site and had come up with artifacts clearly dating back to the late 1600’s : a knife, a fork, fragments of a pipe, glassware, indian pottery sherds, etc. Mr. Lévesque kindly showed them to me and allowed me to manipulate them, while we were having a 30-minute discussion about his search. To think that these objects were the property of Nicolas, that he actually held them in his hands over 300 years ago, was an experience that I am not soon to forget.

There was another dear cousin whom I met and whom I talked with several times over the weekend. We had pleasant conversations on various occasions. Months later, she wrtoe me that she is almost totally deaf and that she was mostly reading my lips and being attentive to my « body language ».I would never have guessed. To think that this cousin spent the whole weekend walking around, not hearing anything and still managed to talk with so many cousins who never suspected that she could not hear them, isn’t it extraordinary?



This month's forum member of the month protested his nomination and asked cousins not to vote for him, but many did not heed his plea. It was a very close race, but Jean Guy came out ahead. As I've said before, he is a man that does not need an introduction. Everyone has seen his messages on the forum as he is most likely the most frequent poster of messages. He's always there to welcome or to ask a new cousin for more information concerning that cousin's line. He always lets us know how he feels about things and when his birthday is. It will be most interesting to learn more about cousin Jean Guy Lacoursiere next month. Congratulations, JG, for winning even if you didn't want it until next April.

(psst, JG, just pretend next month is April, okay, and write us a nice autobiography.)



By Marlyss Rivard Hernandez

When asked what made him chose genealogy as a hobby, Ron said that he's always been interested in his family tree ever since he can remember. It was about four years ago that his dad gave him a book on the Rivard name and that's what got him going. And how does his family feel about this hobby? His family walks away when he starts talking about the "GENIE", but it doesn't stop him as he just keeps on talking. Just like a true Rivard.

Ron says the most interesting thing that he has found while researching are the dit names, the Rivard Family Forum and finding out where his grandparents were from. This gave him the greatest pleasure. He says he hasn’t found any pirates, just bootleggers in his family history. Now, as for those ghosts which may be in his closet, his reply was, "GHOSTS! In MY closets? I'm afraid so, but that door won't be opened by me."

The most helpful resource for Riv was the American-Canadian Genealogical Society in Manchester, NH. (P.O. Box 6478 Manchester, NH, 03108-6478)

Ron found the Rivard Family Forum just as I did, by surfing the net. When it comes to which member of the forum has helped him the most, Ron says, "It's hard to pick just one from this "Family of Cousins", but I think the warm feeling you get conversing with Mary Ann (Rivard) Mickey made me feel as if I've known her all of my life and I admire her candidness."

The other sur-names that Ron is researching are Prince, Pellitier, and Houle. As far as going to Detroit/Windsor in July, well, Ron is just not sure about that as he and his wife will be returning home to New Hampshire from a trip to Alaska on July 19, 2001.

Ron did not write an autobiography per say. He just sent me several little tidbits about himself so I will attempt to put it into story format. He says he is "a talker, not a writer; an ad-libber, not a speaker". I think those of us who met Ron in Trois Rivières last July can attest to that.

To start off, Ron, who was born on February 10, 1940 as the seventh of fifteen children , grew to the height of 5' 10" and 170 pounds. He is a handsome man with brown hair and eyes.

He gave me a list of his favorite things. He likes the color blue best, so it's not surprising that his favorite bird is the Blue Jay, along with the Bald Eagle. (I hope you get to see some Bald Eagles in Alaska, Ron.) Give Ron a package of M & M peanuts and you will have given him his favorite sweets.

His Ruthie, family, work, motorcycle riding, archery, genealogy, and photography are his favorite pass time things. In that order, Riv?

He loves football and boxing and saying "Empathy" or "Others". Hank Williams, Sr., Kitty Wells, Allen Jackson, and Shania Twain are among his favorite singers, while his favorite actors are Charles Bronson, Jane Russell, Sandra Bullock and Mel Gibson. The American Heritage Dictionary is his favorite book. His favorite TV show is "The Vana White Show!!!" Also known as "The Wheel of Fortune" The "Sound of Music" and "Grease" are the favorite movies. Somehow his favorite cartoon comes as no surprise: "The Road Runner". His favorite foods are New England Boil Dinner (ham, cabbage, potatoes, carrots, onions and turnips.)

In describing himself, Ron says that he is "patriotic, sensitive and tough, kind and mean, gentle and rough". He likes discipline and self control along with making decisions with his brain and not his heart, although he does claim to do both. He likes "saying what's on his mind, a spade is a spade. Some people don't like the truth, me? I can't tell a lie."

Ron says that he has "never wished for anything nor can I ever remember wishing for anything. If I want something, I just buy it. If I must work 2 or 3 jobs to get what I want, I just do it. I never purchase big money items without sleeping on it. If it is our of my reach, I settle for less."

Perhaps that goes back to his childhood as he said, he was the seventh of fifteen children. His mother had been married twice and had four children, two Bakers and two Kulingoskis. His father had one girl and seven boys. Things must have gotten a little tough for his father because he left the family. They found out five years later that he had joined the army.

His mother and Edith, the eldest child, raised all of the children. His mother married a Bartisavitch, who treated the children with kindness. Ron does not consider any of his brothers or sisters "half or step or whatever else they would call them, they're all my sisters and brothers. I love all of them as I do the rest of my total family. There are some of them I like more or better then others and there are even some I dislike, but I assure you, I love them all and would not hurt nor would I allow anyone else to hurt them."

Ron went to bed hungry many times, but says he went to bed full many more. "I wore my grandmother's nylons for longjohns in the winter and used cardboard for the soles of my shoes for too many years. I was in an orphanage for two years. I am not an educated man by any means, but I get by. I left school at the age of sixteen in the ninth grade. I'm not proud of that, but you do what you have to do at a particular time. My intent was to never go back.. I hated it. I received my GED at the age of thirty-one and attended college at the age of thirty-three. I went to night school and I still hated it. I never graduated nor do I hold any degrees. I don't plan on getting any and I still hate it, at least when I think about it."

Ron lives in a modest split entry 26' x 52' house which includes a two car garage on two acres. He and his wife started their own company in 1986 and named it Riv, Inc. They manufacture "Thick-Film Screens" for Micro-Electronics industry. They own a 25,000 square foot brick and cinder block building, which houses Riv, Inc. When people ask him what the Riv stands for, he just says, "ME!" He semi-retired in 1997.

Ron has had his share of operations on "this not too old body: 1945 -appendix burst and drained, 1955-tonsils, 1961 appendectomy, 1973-broke three ribs, 1980-herniated disk, 2000-broke six ribs. It does have it's advantages, I can tell when the weather will be bad." He says he seldom gets a head ache and when he does, he just works harder and "before you know it, it's gone. I don't sunburn easily, but I tan very dark. I, like most, am overweight, not immense but comfortably. I exercise, lift weights and stay active."

As far as some of the things that Ron enjoys doing he says, "I hunt with a bow and arrow, but I have never killed anything. I do it to test my skills: tracking, navigating in the woods, seeing how many different animals I spot and looking for wild plants and flowers and I enjoy trees and rocks." His daily activity in warm weather is "Should I work in the yard or "DUCE"? Should I watch TV or "DUCE"? Should I go to work today or "DUCE"? You know who wins, the motorcycle!" On rainy days or winter, it is: Should I clean the house or "GENIE"? Should I watch TV or "GENIE"? Should I go to work or "GENIE"? You know who wins, the genealogy! The "GENIE" and the "DUCE" are not my whole life. I surely have many other interests: relaxing with my Ruthie, family, relaxing with my Ruthie, archery, relaxing with my Ruthie, relaxing with my Ruthie and relaxing with my Ruthie. We do other things, but relaxing is our favorite." Ron says that "My Ruthie is my life, I would not only die for her, I would kill for her."

When asked about his descendants, Ron says, "I have been married twice, the first three(3) kids Janice (my really chosen one)(adopted), James and Shirlee. I have six(6) grandchildren with these three(3) and one(1) great-grandchild. The two(2) with my Ruthie(I adore this woman), Tania & Todd of which the girl one is baby carrying and so is my Shirlee. I am still contributing to the Rivard World. All of my children are on there own and all married with the exception of Todd, he still likes fishing first, then love.(not rather then just first)."

To conclude, Ron says that: "This Rivard Forum is very important to me, finding new cousins is finding new friends." His motto: "KISS=Keep It Simple Stupid".



A Short Story of George Rivard written by Ray Beaupre

Spring Street in Franklin, NH is a short street, no longer than four hundred yards, which connects Prospect St. with School St. Most of the "bread winners" on the street were employed by the J.P. Stevens woolen mill, which was less than a quarter of a mile away. In the early 1940's, families living on the left side of the street, starting from Prospect St., were: Parenteau; Dorman; Mercier; two families: Fredette and Churas (Mrs. Fredette was a Churas); Hebert; and, Gagne. On the right side, were: Turcotte; Laliberte; LeClair; Alfred Beaupre; three families: the Durgins, Beliveaus, Derys; four families: the Trottiers; unknowns; Durgins, Rivards: two families: Cilley and Downes; three families: Smith, Emerson, Tousignant;

In the summer months, Spring Street was like a playground. Very few of the residents owned cars and there was very little traffic on the street. Younger kids played hopscotch on the sidewalk, while older ones played stickball, kick the can, or catch. At dusk, there would frequently be a game of hide and seek, with up to twenty children playing. All games stopped when the iceman came by in his truck. No one on the street owned a refrigerator in those days and perishable food was stored in iceboxes. Resident families had a square card, which had the large numbers printed on it: 10, 15, 20, etc. One would put the card in the window, with the upright number indicating how many pounds of ice was wanted. The ice man would cut the large blocks of ice to that weight and weigh it with a scale hanging at the back of the truck.. Kids would be at the tailgate of the truck to catch the chips of ice that broke off when the ice was being cut, then suck on the pieces to cool themselves. The iceman undoubtedly made sure that there were enough chips for everyone.

In the winter, the favorite sport was sliding. Between the 3- and 4-tenement buildings was a paved, rather steep slope about fifteen feet wide. During some parts of the winter, this slope would become glazed over with ice and children would spend hours sliding down on pieces of cardboard and walking back up, if one could. Sometimes, it became so icy that you had to take a circuitous route around the larger building to get to the top. Kids who owned sleds would climb to the top of School St. and slide down the sidewalk when conditions permitted. To go skiing was unheard of, because one couldn't get to the ski area, which was too far away.

There was a natural hierarchy among the kids. The "tough" kids, one did not mess with. There were older kids who protected the younger ones. There would be fights, but nothing serious. There was one mark of distinction that all kids wanted to have. The "badge of honor" was to have gone to Boston with Mr. Rivard.

Mr. Rivard lived in the 4-tenement building, known as the "block". He was employed by the Franklin Fruit & Produce Co. as a truck driver. Twice a week, Mr. Rivard left Franklin to go to Boston to get a large truckload of fruit and vegetables. He would frequently bring two kids with him in the summertime. If your were going with him, you couldn't sleep all night for fear of missing the departure time. He left home around three o'clock in the morning, arriving in Boston around six. In Boston, he would go to various spots to get the produce that was ordered. Crates of oranges, grapefruit, tomatoes and other fruit were picked up and loaded at Fanuel Hall. Watermelons and potatoes were picked up at the railroad yard, right out of the freight cars. Mr. Rivard would load the truck at these stops and then head for home, getting back to Franklin before noon. It was a long, slow ride. Hills were climbed in the lower gears. The super highways did not exist at that time. Going through cities, such as: Somerville, Lawrence, Andover MA and the traffic circle in Salem, NH were time consuming.

Imagine the thrill of seeing the big buildings of Boston for the first time and going on a trip that was a hundred miles away. Most of the kids had never been more than ten miles away. But, a very important part of the trip was the stop at the Diner in South Lawrence, MA for breakfast. For some of the kids, it was the first time that they ate in a restaurant. Mr. Rivard would order orange juice, milk, and scrambled eggs for the kids. He thoroughly enjoyed seeing them seated on the stools at the counter, their eyes wide from a new experience. Mr. Rivard would just have a cup of coffee. Now here's a man who was going to load, literally, tons of produce on the truck and drive for six or seven hours and not eat breakfast. Later in life, I learned why Mr. Rivard did not eat. He couldn't afford to. His salary was barely enough to support his wife and four children at home. But, the pleasure in seeing the joy of the kid's faces was worth going hungry for the day. (In memory of George Henry Rivard, born: 10 Oct 1902, St. Georges, Windsor, QC. Died 26 Aug 1984, Franklin, N. H.)



Reported by J.G. Lacoursiere

Two nice sites to visit if you like the subject, good pictures too.

A question to Marlyss, Betty and any who is knowledgeable : How long would it take to form a new breed of animals having different charateristics to start with. Say a heavy type, bred with a lighter one until a middle size combining the best of both can be arrived at?

Ok let’s forget the answer for now. It may come easier later on. All this is drawn from Paul

Bernier in « Le Cheval Canadien »

In 1665 the King Louis XIV of France had resolved that his colonists could benefit from the

use of horses and started exporting them in that year. Prior to that we know of only one horse having been imported privately, it was a white one to accommodate the then governor Courcelles.

The first shipment of 1665 consisted of two stallions and twelve mares. An extra one had died during the trip and was not to be counted in the arrivals although the freight was billed for fifteen as carried on-board. Those were distributed to the highest authorities of course, as well as to the seigneurs who were deemed worthy of the presents. None were sent in 1666, and if the equine population increased it could not have been by much at this time. In 1667 the ships brought in the same quantity as before, twelve mares and two stallions, and with precise orders for their distribution. Namely one mare for Monsieur the Governor, one mare also for Monsieur the Bishop, two mares and a stallion for the Jesuit Fathers three mares and one stallion for Montreal, two mares, one stallion for the Ursuline Sisters, one mare for Monsieur de Villeray one mare for Madame Couillard,

--- And that is fourteen. ---

Did I call those « presents » above? Not quite they were. There were strict and wise conditions attached to the possession of the precious animals, to wit :

The recipients could consider themselves as owners in full right but only after a period of three years as caretakers. The contract is very specific in regard to proper feeding, health cares, and shelter. Should any of the horses die from negligence during those three years the caretaker would have to pay a penalty of one hundred pounds into the Treasury to build a replacement Funds. As caretakers the recipients are admonished not to overly draw on the work of the animals and to be also sure that their cycle of reproduction is respected. The expectations of the Court are that each mare was to give birth once a year and every year of its useful life

A provision of the cession contract states that the recipients, now being owners after three years, would turn over one offspring one year of age to his Majesty’s Receiver, or remit a penalty of one hundred Francs for failure to do so. The offsprings thus reverting to the King would be raised and cared for at the cost of his Majesty during another period of three years and redistributed again at that time. And under the same conditions. All transactions to be recorded by notarized documents. The first notarized contract on this matter was passed before Romain Becquet, note-keeper for the king in this Country, dated 29 September 1667 and purporting to the arrivals of that year it is assumed. In it Gabriel Souart, priest and Superior of the Montreal seminary, acknowledges receipt of three mares and two stallions from the King’s intendant, Jean Talon. A description of the ceded animals follow : the stallion being long tailed and black of robe; the first mare being red of hair and eight years of age; the second black of hair and aged from six to eight years; the third being grey and eight years old.

Witnesses countersigning the Acts.

This contract would have served as a model for the cession of further shipments and indicates clearly that the Court had the expansion of the breed much at heart. The fines being levied are not exaggerated in those cases of failure to respect the stated obligations. It is estimated that the transportation cost for each animal was in the 250 pounds range. That was the price Courcelles paid for his private import of a white mare. Other animals had also came across, sheeps for instance, with the horses but Talon had lumped the costs in his acknowledgement of receipt.

For that year 1667 the Jesuits note their thanks to the King for maintaining his armies here, and for sending 350 good men laborers and 60 girls to help in populating this land. The arrival of sheeps is also noted in 1665 and 1667. A similar shipment of horses is recorded in 1668, the actual count being 13 due to the loss of one in transit. The figures are not available for the next three years and the end of the plan but it is assumed that the counts were similar to the previous. So by 1671 a total of 82 horses would have arrived by the care of the Crown and no private imports have been recorded in that time period. By that account we can conclude that all the horses bred into this colony would have come from those original 82, and that until the explorers got far enough out West to come across those left by the Spaniards and gone wild. Which is not a guarantee of cross-breeding at that time yet.

The rapid reproduction rate of those horses was a success and exceeded the initiators wildest hopes. They adapted beautifully to the rough climate and were not such a financial burden to upkeep considering the services they rendered. Twenty years after the first arrivals of 1665 the count stands at 156 heads, twice the number already, and in 1706 ten times more, 1 872 that is, and this had doubled again to 3 786 by the year 1716. When the English took over Murray reported a population of 12 757 horses, and the count for 1784 added up to 30 146, the district of Montreal having 17 825 by itself. Who had gotten the early ones? We know for 1665 from the notes above.

In 1670 the recipients were all named with a particle, Messrs. Talon, de Chambly, de Sorel, de St-Ours, de Varennes, up to le Ber etc. How long would it take before they would come into the hands of the common habitant is a good question. We know that Abel Turcot willed his plowing horse, with harness in 1687. But Abel was already a prosperous farmer and flower-miller. At the 1666 census he had four domestics, 500 arpents cultivated, and 14 heads of cattle. So he might well have put up the price of getting some available one. But a time came when there were enough horses that each inhabitant could claim one of his own. The breed had developped into what is known as ‘le cheval canadien’ and became a great source of revenues of export.

The above URLs have links to other pertinent data and stories.

So if you say that your ancestor owned a Canadian Horse be ready to quote a census by name, place and year. And if you hear someone say that my ancestors had the same, and with a cart to boot, tell them to supply the same demonstration. My question to our knowledgeable readers : after how many horse’s generations could one particular breed be distinguished from its predecessor line?



Bellefeuille … Tara Lynne Lokensgard Johnson

Loranger … Bill Harms

Lacoursiere … Stephanie Rivard Smith & Jeannot Duchesne

Rivard … Ghislane Massicotte Rivard, Claude Rivard & Luc Rivard

The "trees" for the above members will be on the homepage soon. Welcome to the family!



Birthday Wishes were extended to:

Alain Gariépy & Nina Jackman April 26th

André Dufresne - June 15th

New Births:

Three new babies were entered into the Rivard database this month:

Mathieu Gerard Lacourciere, b. June 1, 2001 - s/o Gerard and Karen Lacourciere. The proud grandparents are Jacques & Peggy Lacourciere in NY.

Mathew Joseph Lacouciere, b. April 10, 2001 - s/o Richard/Noreen Lacourciere

Jayden Paige Fitzgerald, b. June 3, 2001 - d/o John & Cassey Leanne Rheaume Fitzgerald.


We'd like to take this opportunity to extend our condolences to the Hernandez Family on the loss of their ex daughter-in-law, Jennette Wilson Hernandez who passed away on the 9th of June 2001. She leaves behind two children, Laura & Allen, who are in the care of their father Mark Hernandez and grandparents, Herm & Marlyss Hernandez.

A Prankster Invades the Rivard Family Archives at Yahoogroups

No more had the forum gotten over it's problem with the Badtrans e-mail virus and infected attachments it was notified that a new file had been uploaded to the Rivard Archives at No one knows who uploaded this file or how it was done without Mary Ann's consent while she & Dave were visiting their daughter in Washington DC. After Mary Ann's return she exercised her options as a list owner and quickly deleted this file and blocked this individual from uploading anything further to the Rivard Family Archives. All's well, that ends well.


A New Twist to Unravel an Old Mystery

The old mystery involving Josef Rivard & Catherine Osage continues on, but has taken a different twist. The old saying, "There is more way than one to skin a cat", would seem to apply here. From information sent by Lorraine we know that Josef & Catherine's son married Francoise Roy. Two or three of her brothers were also involved in the early Missouri fur trade, as well as, Menard and others. The thought was if we traced the Roy & Menard lines, we may run into a clue that would carry us further in our search. J. G. has access to Tanguay on CD and took the time this month to enter the Roy data and put it into a GED format, which he has shared with the forum. Other forum members have also entered data found in the two volumes of Dennisen's French Famillies of the Detroit River Region. If any clues are derived from this new way of searching this mystery everyone will be informed on the Rivard Genealogy Forum.


Rivard's in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin

A possible lead to the Rivard family that resided in Prairie du Chien in the early 1820's has finally come to light (in partial thanks) to Jim L. who sent the URL for the Wisconsin Oconto Site. For those of you who have never visited this sight you may want to. It is very nicely constructed and does have a great deal of information on it. One of the things it has is a query site that is dedicated to doing look-ups into the several books written by Les & Jeanne Rentmeester. After visiting the site both J.G. & Mary Ann took the time to send in a request for information involving a Joseph Rivard mentioned in both the Wisconsin Creoles and the Wisconsin Fur-trade People. There is a Joseph Rivard mentioned in these books as being a French Canadian who married at Fever River and was involved with the fur-trade in Prairie du Chien and elsewhere in the state. Two of his children were also mention. A query was sent to gather more information from St. Gabriel's parish records in Prairie du Chien, but hasn't been answered yet. When it arrives it will be posted.


Some Interesting Genealogy Questions Asked … Answers Coming Shortly

Each month some very interesting questions are being asked in regards to genealogy. This month was no different. Due to that fact we will be setting up another new section in the newsletter, which will be coming shortly. This section will be devoted to 'Frequently asked Questions' with the answers given by one of our more notable genealogist on the forum, André Dufresne. If you have a question regarding genealogy or history of the Rivard family they will be answered here. You can send your questions directly to me at or post them on the Genealogy forum.


A New Rivard Chat Forum is Born

A new Rivard-Chat Forum has been up and running since June 2nd, 2001. This second forum was born out of the need to separate the fun "getting to know you" type subjects from the more serious genealogical information regarding the "ancestral & historical facts" of our respective Rivard ancestors. The purpose being to alleviate the abundance of daily mail for those just seeking genealogical data and not interested in "small talk".

I'm happy to report that it is working well. The huge amount of mail received on the "Genealogy Only Forum" has dropped off tremendously and makes this much nicer for those interested in just this subject. We are still receiving a few messages like, "where do you live?" yet, but they should be soon directed to the Rivard chat group. Not only is the Rivard Chat working, it has drawn out several of our "silent members" who were not participating because they didn't feel as though they had anything significant to contribute.

I'd like to encourage everyone to join both groups, because both have a lot to offer. The mail delivery options are the same on both, an option you may want to take advantage of. The Rivard cousins are pretty chatty and there is no '25 words or less' requirement on the Rivard Chat. If you need instructions on how to join the Chat Forum you can contact, Mary Ann Mickey or any of the other many cousins on the forum. We'll be happy to help you out.


Help Needed - Obits

Anna, (AKA: "Highlander") has taken on the project of putting all of the Rivard obituaries into a book. She has asked that anyone having one please send to her directly, so she can include it. Anna generally reads her messages from the Rivard Archives so sending them directly to her will simplify things for her. Many thanks go to Henri & Alain and others who have already provided her with many.


Miscellaneous Messages with Strange Subject Lines:

We've had some very interesting subject lines on the forum this month, none of which sound very much like "genie biz". Just to recap on a few:

"The Unique Man in our Group" … To hear one of the girls on the forum tell it, this Rivard gentleman has so many stars in his crown that he out shines the sun. He must be some pretty "hot stuff" because we've been told that you can get warm just standing in his shadow …

"Mysterious Susan" … the topic of this discussion revolved around a certain cousin's interest in another cousin's "physical condition". I haven't got a clue as to why he was interested in her boxing activities, but he did ask if she held a light, medium or heavy weight title…

"da dot dot di da" … Now this one was a bit harder to decipher. It seems that Dottie was causing a disturbance between Jan, Tom, & André. To hear J.G. tell it, she was being so noisy that he threatened to remove her if she didn't quiet down some. I guess he thought that Jan, Tom, & André needed an attitude adjustment so he put them in seclusion for some quiet time… André must have really been in trouble because he is still quiet, Tom's computer blew up right when he needed it most & Jan is still running from the Pork C(h)ops ...

Useless facts … This subject was indeed useless unless you happened to be interested in the sexual activities of a pig. Of the two men who responded to this conversation, one admitted openly to being called a pig and the other proclaimed that he was better than the average pig. The names of these gentlemen are being withheld to protect the innocent & the gullible …

A Mini RV … Anybody interested in a picnic in the park? Norm will be supplying the lobster. The hugs & soft pecan chocolate chip cookies will be served up by Denise. Alain will also be on hand if anyone is interested in a round of golf. J.G. will also be on hand to give the players pointers on the rules of the game.

Nude Photo Shoot & Rippers … What do these things have in common? Well, it seems that the rippers were at J.G.'s place and walked off with his pants. Yep, he left them laying on the back of his chair again. To retrieve them he had to run after the rippers down the street with nothing on but a towel. As luck would have it, he ran straight into a camera-man who had been hired to shoot nude photos in Montréal. In his excitement J.G. dropped his towel. The camera-man was so shocked at the sight before him he forgot to push the pause button on his camcorder. The rest is history. For more information you may want to contact Ann & Bill. Bill says he got it all on tape.

That’s it Folks, Until Next Month



For those who of you are not familiar with townships & county boundaries … You may find the following two URL's passed on by MAM helpful:

So often I have a township, but no idea what county it's in. Especially for states I'm not familiar with. Here's a site that lists all the townships by state, though not all states are included.

In Feature, type the township name. Pick the state. in Feature Type, select civil. The query results will show you the county and you can also make a map by clicking on the Feature Name link, then Show Feature Location. Works for all states. I understand that county and townships lines have been redrawn numerous times, but it might get you in the ball park.



"Delicious Batters for Deep Fried Foods"

The recipes selected for the Rivard Kitchen this month were volunteered by the rivardchat group in response to a query of mine: How do I keep my beer battered fish from sticking to the basket in my deep fryer? Not only did I get an answer to my question it prompted a discussion and the following recipes that I've been told can be used on anything that you deep fry, including chicken. One very interesting note brought up was that some people are allergic to some of the additives & preservatives used in making American beers. In that case, Mary Clor recommends that you use a German beer. The German's quality standard does not allow any additives or preservatives to be added to their beers.

Beer Batter Recipe - Nickie Cheney's Hubby


1 egg

1tsp. baking powder

1/2tsp. baking soda


dash of garlic powder (optional)

just enough beer to make it a nice consistance (like batter, from a box cake mix)

"Deep Fry Batter for Vegetables" - Try it. You'll like it. We do. Nina

1 egg

1/4 cup milk

1/2 cup flour

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon shortening

*NOTE: "A Hint From the Highlander"

When deep frying your fish or veggies, be sure that you use a good quality oil and that it is hot enough. That will prevent sticking & shorten the cooking time.



Ships and aircraft in trouble use "mayday" as their call for help?

This comes from the French word m'aidez - meaning "help me" - and is pronounced "mayday." (Note: not exactly.... it's pronounced "med-ay", but close enough)



"You're in incredibly fine condition," the doctor concluded after finishing a thorough physical. "How old did you say you were, sir?"


"Seventy-eight! Why, you have the health of a sixty-year-old. What's your secret?"

"I guess, Doc, it's due to a pact the wife and I made when we got married. She promised that if she was ever about to lose her temper, she'd stay in the kitchen 'till she cooled off. And I pledged that when I got angry I'd keep quiet, too, and go outside until I calmed down."

"I don't understand," said the doctor, "How could that help you stay so fit?"

"Well, the patient explained, "I guess you could say I've lived an outdoor life."



The last issue of the Rivard Forum Newsletter, with me on the staff list, as the editor will be posted in July 2001. In July we will have come full circle. Yep, it will be a whole year that we've kept this project up and running and no one could be prouder than I am. It has taken some time, but we now have a web page of our own and a flexible-working format that anyone can follow. So, it won't be difficult for someone else to follow in my footsteps and I'll always be standing by in the wings to help whomever volunteers to take over if need be. It has been a great year and I'd like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for his or her support.

I'm sure that many of you are probably wondering why I've chosen to step down as editor when I was the creator of this piece of art. There are a number of reasons, but the main one is that I need more time for research than I've been able to muster up in the past year. My girls, Jacki, Wendy Jo, & Dee are all going strong and I'm sitting here in envy while they travel across the U.S. to gather genealogical data. I don't know how many more years I'm going to have to take advantage of these kinds of trips and don't want to miss out. These trips will limit the time needed to continue as editor of the Forum Newsletter.

Until Next Month

Be Kind to One Another & Keep Smiling