Posting # 1 : the background of the Association
here is an anecdotal background of the first 25 years of the Association of Saindons of North America.
The Association was founded by Fernand, Robert and Yvon Saindon in 1995.
All three are descendants of Pierre, the 4th child of Michel.
Here is what Fernand told us in a May 2005 article in the Bulletin about the beginning of the Association.
First, a few genealogic links 1
Yvon was the son of Ernest Saindon and Robert the son of Alfred Saindon. Ernest and Alfred were brothers, their father being Arsène Saindon (6th generation (2) in Laurent Saindon’s publication). Fernand tells us “on my side, my father was Uldège and his brother was Robert. Yvon and Robert were first cousins and Robert was my uncle".
The evolution of the concept of founding an Association
“Robert came often to visit my father in St-Modeste as he was the parish priest nearby (St-François-Xavier de Viger and St-Arsène) for many years. When he visited my parents, we would meet occasionally. Moreover, I was the master of ceremonies and the celebrations of his 25th anniversary in the priesthood.
In 1985 Robert, being very interested in genealogy, travelled to Europe to try and seek out information on Michel Saindon, our first ancestor. He spoke to me often about his genealogic discoveries and his interest in a regrouping or consolidation. Finally, in 1992, the books of Laurent Saindon, father of Marc and Jacques, were published; I immediately bought them to get better acquainted with my lineage. These events stimulated my interest in Saindon genealogy, especially after reading Laurent’s two publications.”
The Meetings of the three founders
In the Spring of 1994, Yvon lived in Lac Beauport and I (Fernand) in Beauport. I didn’t know Yvon at that time but had met his brother Léo during a trip to California in 1970. Robert had mentioned to me Yvon’s interest and gave me his address.
We decided on a first meeting that was held at my house in Beauport. That kicked things off: we decided to work on a collaborative project and after three additional meetings we had drawn up an outline for an organization. In the months that followed we were able to elaborate the project.
In June of 1995, we decided to create the Association. Yvon as President, Robert as Vice-President and Fernand as Treasurer".
- Recruit members (Robert and Yvon inside Quebec and Fernand and Claude outside).
- Incorporating the organization developing a crest (Yvon)
- Publicity through newspapers (Claude, Madeleine, Jean Pierre and Fernand)
- A grand assembly at Cacouna in 1996 (all)
- A commemorative plaque in Cacouna (Yvon and Thérèse Fontaine)
In December 1995, the Association had 27 members, 23 from Quebec, 2 from Manitoba and 2 from the United States.
Here is an extract from a section of the first Bulletin:2
*Since autumn of 1994, Fernand Saindon, a founding member of the Association, has corresponded with Sister Veronica Roy of New Almelo in Kansas. Sister Roy was interested in the genealogy of the Saindon family and had even published a book on the Saindons in the United States, specifically, on the descendants of Célestin Saindon who had settled in Kansas in 1875. The book was entitled “Our Saindon Cousins 1718-1990”. In her letter of 26 September, 1994, she wrote:
“I find the idea of a gathering of Saindons in Cacouna wonderful! I have never visited Canada as I was a little intimidated by the fact that I didn’t speak French that well. My parents spoke the language very well. I had only studied it for two semesters in college.”
Sister Veronica Roy also sent us a partial list of the Saindons in the United States. They can be found throughout the western US, especially in Kansas and Colorado.
*Another American cousin, Robert A. Saindon, from Wolf Point in Montana, in his letter of 6 October, 1995, tells us of his project to publish a historic timeline of the Saindons.
Refs: 1 Bulletin La Lignée vol. 11 no.2
2 Bulletin La Lignée vol. 1 no.1
They soon got in touch with Saindons of the United States in particular Sr Veronica Roy who had already published "Our Saindon Cousins" about the Saindons of Kansas emigrated from Cacouna around 1875.
At that time, there was an exodus of Canadians to the United States: the lands in Quebec being too small to support a family and the American government wanting to develop the mid-west offered vast lands almost free.