Duchesnes History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
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The proud French name Duchesnes 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 Duchesnes family
The surname Duchesnes 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. 
Early History of the Duchesnes family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Duchesnes 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 Duchesnes History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Duchesnes Spelling Variations
There were a great number of spelling variations in French surnames. One reason for this was the wide variety of cultural influences present in France during the early development of the French language. The many spelling variations of the name 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 Duchesnes 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 the king; and his son, Jacques Duchesneau de la Doussinière et d'Ambault, chevalier (died 1696), French intendant of New France from 1675 to 1682; and Jacques Cassagne or Jacques de Cassaigne (1636-1679), a French clergyman, poet and moralist.
William Defesch, a Fleming by birth, was organist of the church of Notre Dame at Antwerp, and in 1725 succeeded Alfonso D'Eve as chapel-master there, but...
Another 111 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Duchesnes Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Duchesnes family
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 Duchesnes. 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 Duchesnes were Madame Duchesne, aged 40, who settled in New Orleans in 1823; J.B. Duchesne, aged 44, who settled in New Orleans in 1822; André Duchene who settled in Philadelphia, Pa. in 1795.
Related Stories +
- ^ 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