Hello and welcome to Saint-Prosper-de-Champlain!
My name is Augustin Massicotte and I just had the most unforgettable day. My co-parishioners threw an impressive feast in my honour.
In recognition of the many services I have rendered to the parish, Champlain’s Member of Parliament offered me a gold-headed cane on behalf of the parishioners. I told him that everything I had done for my fellow citizens, I hadn’t done alone.
I lived on Saint-Augustin Road with my father and my three brothers, in the place we call "Le Grand Brûlé". In 1812, when I was 21 years old, I joined the militia to fight the Americans. I came back with a title of Major, but everyone here calls me "The Captain". In 1816, I married Julie Trudel and built a house on the Saint-Augustin Road of my youth. It’s a wonderful stone house, which I adorned with a beautiful clock. In my life, you see, I always enjoyed setting the record straight for myself and others.
In 1845, at the "Grand Brûlé", we considered that the church and the parson of Sainte-Anne were very far away. Many of my fellow citizens were deprived of the parson’s presence before they died because of the distance. That’s when I understood that we had to build a church and found a parish. It wasn’t easy. I signed petitions, visited the Archbishop of Quebec, and was granted the support of Cook, the Grand Vicar of Trois-Rivières.
In 1847, I purchased a piece of land for the church and the house that would be used as a presbytery was built nearby. I drew the plans for the church myself, its construction started in 1848. The official erection of the parish took place in 1850. At the time, as the presbytery wasn’t ready yet, I had to welcome the first parson, Charles-Olivier Caron, at my house.
In 1855, it was thought proper to elect me as first mayor. Every Sunday, at the end of the Mass, I gathered most householders and submitted a few questions that needed to be addressed concerning the parish.
I believe that I have helped make Saint-Prosper a place where life is good. Anyway, this is what the gold-headed cane that was handed to me this afternoon makes me think. I wish you well!
Fonds Augustin Massicotte FN 0200. Archives du Séminaire de TroisRivières / Julien, Robert. «La Maison à cadran» de SaintProsper-de-Champlain. Le Bulletin des Chenaux, 2015, Consulté le 7 juillet 2016 / Talusier, Eugénie. Autour du clocher natal: notes historiques sur la paroisse de SaintProsper, comté de Champlain. Vanasse & Lefrançois, Trois-Rivières,1909, 323 pages.