Village Families

The village around 1910

Source: McCord Museum, Photolithography

The toponymy of Quebec towns is often reminiscent of the first settlers who cleared the land and erected the first houses or the first dignataries who forged the destiny of the community. Lac-des-Seize-Îles is no exception; here you will find streets and roads that bear the names of families whose descendants still live in the municipality. The community of Lac-des-Seize-Îles has never been large, counting only about two hundred citizens today, but the population quadruples when the good weather comes and the seasonal residents return to their cottages.

The Gagné family

Moïse Gagné (1850-1930) and his wife Alzire Beaulne (1850-1917), early 20 th century
Source: Luc Lamond, Richard Brin collection

The lumber industry was instrumental in the establishment of the village and employed most of the men. Moïse Gagné was in his forties when he arrived at the lake with his five oldest sons to work at the sawmill in 1897. His wife and four younger children followed a few months later, as soon as a home could be found for them. Several generations of Gagnés participated in the development of the community; Moïse was an alderman on the first municipal council in 1914, as was his son, Alphonse. They also contributed to the construction of the church and several houses.

The Brin family

Delia Gagné Brin (1876-1931) 
and Antoine Brin (1864 - unknown)

Before moving to Lac-des-Seize-Îles, Delia, one of Moïse Gagné's daughters, had married Antoine Brin in Roxton Falls in 1896. Gil Cook, a resident of the lake, remembers an exceptional woman: 

'One of Moses' daughters, Delia, married Antoine Brin Jr. She turned out to be one of the most admirable women this lake has ever known. A well-built woman who had a heart as big as she was. Nothing was too difficult for 'Mrs. Brin,' as she was affectionately called. On many occasions, this angel of mercy kept an all-night vigil over a sick child or a suffering mother - our local Florence Nightingale. Many a newborn has owed its safe entry into the world to Mrs. Brin's skill and compassion.'

Les cahiers d'Histoire des Pays-d'en-Haut, no. 37, April 1988.

The history of the Studebaker

Roland Charette explains to Jean-Louis Courteau, diver and director of the Laurentian Water Interpretation Centre (Centre d'interprétation des eaux laurentiennes -CIEL), how Henri Brin's car, a 1929 Studebaker Erskine, ended up at the bottom of Lac des Seize Îles in the 1940s. The interview took place over coffee at the Lac-des-Seize-Îles General Store in 2019.

The general store is the place to get the latest news and to hear older residents tell interesting stories. The Lac-des-Seize-Îles General Store was inaugurated in 1910 by Albert T. Patterson. Along with the post office next door, the general store is the oldest business in the village. Donat Cossette, whose family arrived in the 19 th century, and his wife Gilberte Cholette, bought the store in 1920. It remained in the family until 2003, when the Tassé family, another family with deep roots in the region, took over.

The Studebaker story told by Roland Charette

Sources: Rosette and her husband Henri Brin, son of Delia Gagné Brin, in front of their Studebaker Erskine in 1939. Source: Luc Lamond, Richard Brin collection

Extract of
Lac-des-Seize-Iles... History and Heritage

Lac-des-Seize-Iles... History and Heritage image circuit

Presented by : Municipalité de Lac-des-Seize-Îles
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