1775, about 1400 Acadians moved from the failed settlement attempt at Poitou
and traveled to the area around Nantes. This would be their home
for the next decade. Most of the Acadians left for Louisiana in 1785.
| In 1772, the marquis Perusse des Cars gave
the Acadians some of his land to farm. But the 1500 Acadians who
migrated to the Poitou area found sterile soil and no housing. They
had to pay high rent prices in nearby villages. By 1775, the "La
Ligne Acadienne" settlement (as it was called) decided to
call it quits. Francois Roux has a section of his site (in French)
on the Acadian
Poitou settlement. Some of the pages are on books on the subject, a document on the settlement by Ernest Martin, and more.
Almost all of the Acadians moved to Nantes,
and only 160 were left in the area by the following year. There were
4 convoys to Chatellerault. The lists can be found in The Acadians
in France, Vol. 1 (Milton & Norma Reider). Francois Roux
also has them [1st
convoy] online at his website.
|Acadians in Nantes: 1775-1785
|The biggest concentration of Acadians in France
for the next 10 years would be at Nantes. Gerard Braud has produced a couple
of book on the Acadians in Nantes. His From Nantes to Louisiana is a small paperback that has also been translated into English.
It is more of a narrative of the story. Another book he recently
produced, Les Acadiens en France: Nantes et Paimboeuf, 1775-1785,
contains thousands of people in hundreds of family groups. It is
printed in French and English.
By now, the successful settlement of Acadians
in Louisiana was old news. Talk began of migrating there also.
But the main concern of the Acadians for the next decade was providing
| About 1783, a Frenchman named Henri Peyroux
de la Coudreniere returned to France from Louisiana. With the help
of the Acadian cobbler Olivier Theriot, he worked on recruiting Acadians
to move to Louisiana. At first, France wasn’t cooperative.
After all, Louisiana was now a Spanish colony. But they finally worked
out an agreement in late 1784 and about 1600 Acadians sailed for Louisiana
in seven ships in 1785. Six of the ships
left from the Nantes/Paimboeuf area. Another, La Ville d'Archangel,
left from St. Malo. More information on
the ships can be found in the Cajun History section.
THE DEPARTURE OF THE ACADIANS FROM
NANTES by Robert Dafford
| So there were still Acadians at Nantes after
the last of the seven ships left. Since the French government saw
the success of the migration and stopped the immigration of more Acadians,
they were there to stay. Those Acadians who stayed in France became
assimilated for the most part.
A couple of modern day organizations with ties
to the Acadians in Nantes are:
• L'Association Regionale de l'Ouest des Amities Acadiennes (Nantes)
The best printed treatment of Acadians in
France during 1758 to 1785 can be found in Oscar Winzerling's Acadian