Duchesneau History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The proud French name Duchesneau was formed in Normandy when the family resided in Normandy, at the town of Quesney or Chenay. The family name is a local form of this place name, meaning of Quesney or Chenay.
Early Origins of the Duchesneau family
The surname Duchesneau was first found in Normandy (French: Normandie), the former Duchy of Normandy, where the family dates back to the Gauls in the sixth century when their root name of Cassanus was used according to the French historian Morlet. After the 9th century the family allied and intermarried with the Vikings or Northmen, when they were recorded as an ancient Norman family with seats and estates. Today Chassaing is a settlement in Guadeloupe in the commune of Saint-François, on the island of Grande-Terre.
By the 13th century the family were well established in many regions and several bearers of the family name were rewarded with lands, titles, and letters patent confirming their nobility. Rogiers De Chaigne is recorded as holding lands in Picardy in the 1200's, Jehanot Du Chesne is mentioned in the royal cartularies in 1342, Matheus Cassien of Morcourt in 1340, Jobertus Chenet appears in Picardy in 1227.
By the end of the 1500's the family could also be found as Chenay, Chesnay, Chesnaie, and Cassou in the north, and Cassagne-Lacassagne, Chassagne, Cassan, Chassang, and Chassaing in the south.
The Duchesneau or Le Chesnot were Lords of Brittany until the 1700's when the title was transferred to the Le Forestier family. The LeChene or Duchene's were the Lords of Normandy until 1710 with the marriage of the heiress to a De Prie. Showing their prominence, the Duchesne or Le Chesne were Lords of Brittany, Poitou, Normandy, l'île-de-France, and Sologne. Due to their great wealth, the Deschene family held the lands and manor of the Canton of Belfont. 
Pierre Duchesne, born in 1621, son of Jean and Catherine (née Poulet), travelled from Picardie, France to the New World in the 17th century. He married Catherine Rivest on 7th January 1666 and they settled in Sainte-Famille, Quebec, where they remained until his death on 11th March 1697. 
Important Dates for the Duchesneau family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Duchesneau research. Another 214 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1227, 1340, 1342, 1500, 1584, 1640, 1700, and 1710 are included under the topic Early Duchesneau History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Duchesneau Spelling Variations
History has changed the spelling of most surnames. During the early development of the French language in the Middle Ages, a person gave his version of his name, phonetically, to a scribe, a priest, or a recorder. Some variables were adopted by different branches of the family name. Hence, there spelling variations of the name Duchesneau, some of which include Duchesne, du Chesne, Duchèsne, Duchès, Duchène, Duchêne, Duchêsne, Chisne, Chauny, Chesne, Chesneau, Chenay, Chesnaie, Lequesne, Duquesne, Chene, Chaine, Chand, Chesnot, DuChaine, Duchesneau, Duchesnaux, Descheneaux, Duquesne, LeQuesne, Chassaing, Duchand and many more.
Early Notables of the Duchesneau family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family in this period was André Duchesne (1584-1640) French geographer and historian, often called the father of French history; Abraham Duquesne, Marquis du Bouchet (c.1610-1688), a French naval officer; Guillaume Chesneau, chevalier, seigneur, cup-bearer to...
Another 38 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Duchesneau Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Duchesneau migration to the United States
In 1643, 109 years after the first landings by Cartier, there were only about 300 people in Quebec, in 1663 there were only 500, 2,000 migrants arrived 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 migrants, both noble and commoner from France. 15,000 explorers left Montreal in the late 17th and 18th centuries. Migration from France to New France or Quebec as it was now more popularly called, continued from France until it fell in 1759. By 1675, there were 7000 French in Quebec. By the 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. Meanwhile, in Quebec, the French race flourished, founding in Lower Canada, one of the two great solitudes which became Canada. Many distinguished contributions have been made by members of this family name Duchesneau. It has been prominent in the arts, religion, politics and culture in France and New France. Amongst the settlers in North America with this distinguished name Duchesneau were
Duchesneau Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- Jo Duchesneau, aged 30, who landed in America, in 1896
Duchesneau Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Henry Duchesneau, aged 32, who immigrated to the United States, in 1921
Contemporary Notables of the name Duchesneau (post 1700)
- Jacques Duchesneau CM (b. 1949), Chief of Police and Chief of Staff of the Montreal Urban Community Police Service from 1994 to 1998
- ^ Hozier, Charles D, and Antoine Bachelin-Delforenne. État présent De La Noblesse française (1883-1887): Contenant Le Distionnaire De La Noblesse Contemporaine Et Larmorial général De France, Dapres Les Manuscrits De Ch. D Hozier. Librairie Des Bibliophiles, 1884. Print.
- ^ Olivier, Reginald L. Your Ancient Canadian Family Ties. Logan: The Everton Publishers, Inc., P.O. Box 368, 1972. Print