The Caughnawaga Troubles (1878) | Surnames: Meloche, Jones, Lecuyer, Deblois, Lafleur, Desparaois, Perras, Therrien, Plante, Cardinal, Giroux, sr., Trudeau, Boulrice, Champagne, Giroux, jr., Duranceau
Surnames: Meloche, Jones, Lecuyer, Deblois, Lafleur, Desparaois, Perras, Therrien, Plante, Cardinal, Giroux, Trudeau, Boulrice, Champagne, Giroux, Duranceau
Note from Evelyn: This article clearly represents a late 19th century non-Native view of the Meloche affair and is offered as information into the spirit of the times – not as fact – and I do not share in the prejudices that are expressed.
THE CAUGHNAWAGA TROUBLES
on the fatal fire at Caughnawaga was closed yesterday. notwithstanding the most most diligent and painstaking endeavors on the part of Coroner Jones, it is to be regretted that, owing to the well-known non-communicative character of the Indians, none of the conspirators whose work this dreadful deed doubtless could be discovered. The following is the jury’s
“That on the 11th of May 1878, some person, or persons, to the jurors aforesaid unknown, did, feloniously, maliciously and unlawfully, ignite, set fire to, and burn the stables, barns and other outbuildings the property of one Ozias Meloche, being and situated int he village of Caughnawaga, Seignory of Sault St. Louis, County of Laprairie, and District of Montreal; and that the raid Ozias Meloche, in his endeavors to rescue and save from destruction his horses and cattle, contained in the said stables, barns and outbuildings, was, in the said stables, suffocated and burned by the said fire, and then and there, instantly did die.
“And the jurors aforesaid on their oaths, aforesaid do further say and declare: that
THERE EXISTS A CONSPIRACY
in the village of Caughnawaga against the Canadians and the half-breeds (Metis) of this village; that the notices posted upon the church doors of the village contained serious threats (menaces) not only against the properties of the Metis, but they also threatened their lives; that there is no good or fundamental reason for the origin (naissance) of such conspiracy, as all the Canadians and Metis are honest, respectable and industrious; that the fire which destroyed the property of Ozias Meloche and in which he perished, was no doubt the act of an incendiary; that the deceased Ozias Meloche was destined to be the first victim upon whom the conspirators were to vent and exercise their cruelty and vengeance (barbarie); that the Chiefs of the Iroquois tribe of Caughnawaga are blamable in not having suppressed and publicly disapproved and condemned the posting of these notices, and it is to be regretted that inquest. And we humbly pray that the Government will take and adopt the necessary measures for the protection of the individuals whom the conspirators desire and are determined to oppress and persecute.”
Signed by eleven of the jurors, and three made their marks. The following are the names and ages of the jurors; – Joseph Lecuyer, foreman, 69, Edward Deblois, 43, David Lafleur, 54, Narcisse Desparaois, 42, Francois Peeras (prob. Perras), 31, Alexander Therrien, 43, Onezime Plante, 23, Joseph Cardinal, 48, Jean Baptiste Giroux, sr., 58, Ferdinand Trudeau, 25, Louis Boulrice, 50, Philomen Champagne, 23, Jean Baptiste Giroux, jr., 28, Jean Baptiste Duranceau, 55.
Source: The Montreal Daily Witness, May 11, 1878
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