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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2014

Where did the French Bienvenu family come from? What is the French Bienvenu family crest and coat of arms? When did the Bienvenu family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Bienvenu family history?

The people of Gascogne, an ancient region of France adopted Bienvenu as a surname during the Middle Ages. Bienvenu was a name for someone who lived in Gascony, where the family was established in a commune in the department of Basses-Pyrénées, near Bayonne.

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Throughout the course of history most surnames have undergone changes for many reasons. During the early development of the French language, a son and father may not have chosen to spell their name the same way. Many are simple spelling changes by a person who gave his name, phonetically, to a scribe, priest, or recorder. Many names held prefixes or suffixes which became optional as they passed through the centuries, or were adopted by different branches to signify either a political or religious adherence. Hence, we have many spelling variations of this name, Bienvenu some of which are Desbiens, Dubien, Debien, Bien, Bienne, Bienné, Bienabe, Bienabé, Bienaimé, Bienaymé, Bienvenu, Bienvenue and many more.

First found in Gascony (French: Gascogne), an area of southwest France bordering Spain, that was part of the "Province of Guyenne and Gascony" prior to the French Revolution, where the family was anciently established in a commune in the department of Basses-Pyrénées, near Bayonne.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bienvenu research. Another 130 words(9 lines of text) covering the year 1588 is included under the topic Early Bienvenu History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Bienvenu Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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French settlers came early to North American, following in the wake of the explorers, and creating New France. Quebec City, founded in 1608 by Samuel de Champlain is said to have been the first American site founded as a permanent settlement, rather than as just a commercial outpost. But emigration was slow, in 1643, 109 years after the first landings by Cartier, there were only about 300 French people in Quebec, and by 1663, when the region was officially made The Royal Colony of New France, by Louis XIV, there still only around 500 settlers. Over 2,000 would arrive during the next decade. Early marriage was desperately encouraged amongst the immigrants. Youths of 18 took fourteen-year-old girls for their wives. The fur trade was developed and attracted immigrants, both noble and commoner from France. By 1675, there were around 7000 French in the colony, and by that same year the Acadian presence in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island had reached 500. In 1755, 10,000 French Acadians refused to take an oath of allegiance to England and were deported to Louisiana. Despite the loss of the Colony to England, the French people flourished in Lower Canada. Among settlers to North America of the Bienvenu surname were

Bienvenu Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Alexis Bienvenu, who married Marie-Anne Campeau in Detroit in 1763

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  1. Annuaire Général Héraldique Universel. Paris: Institut Héraldique, 1901. Print.
  2. Rolland, and H.V. Rolland. Illustrations to the Armorial general by J. B. Rietstap 6 volumes in 3. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1976. Print.
  3. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  4. Doyle, William. The Oxford History of the French Revolution. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990. Print. (ISBN 0192852213).
  5. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  6. Rupp, Daniel L. A Collection of Upwards of Thirty Thousand Names of German, Swiss, Dutch, French and Other Immigrants to Pennsylvania from 1727 to 1776. Baltimore. Print.
  7. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  8. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  9. D'Hozier Charles. Armorial Général de France. Paris: Dillon, 1875. Print.
  10. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  11. ...

The Bienvenu Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Bienvenu Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 27 October 2010 at 13:31.

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