The Gagnon and Belzile

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The Gagnon and Belzile of America have four ancestors from France, more precisely from Tourouvre and La Ventrouze, Perche, Normandy. They are Mathurin, Pierre, Jean and Robert Gagnon.

It is in Tourouvre, not far from Mortagne, the former capital of the Perche region, that the Gagnonniere or village of the Gagnon family is located, the house where the three Gagnon brothers, Mathurin, Jean and Pierre were born. As early as 1640, the three brothers were in Quebec City where they operated a store in the lower town. They are also firmly established on their lands from Côte de Beaupre to Château-Richer. The Gagnon and Belzile of America have four ancestors from France, more precisely from Tourouvre and La Ventrouze, Perche, Normandy. They are Mathurin, Pierre, Jean and Robert Gagnon.

It is in Tourouvre, not far from Mortagne, the former capital of the Perche region, that the Gagnonniere or village of the Gagnon family is located, the house where the three Gagnon brothers, Mathurin, Jean and Pierre were born. As early as 1640, the three brothers were in Quebec City where they operated a store in the lower town. They are also firmly established on their lands from Côte de Beaupre to Château-Richer.

In 1655, Robert, the fourth ancestor, arrived and settled on Île d'Orleans. Jean Gagnon, Robert's grandson, established the Canadian name of the Belles-Îsles and Belzile families in America. He was married to a daughter of the Lord of the Islet and Commander of the South Shore Militia and Guardian of the Islands. His sons continued to call themselves that, but half of his descendants kept the name Gagnon and dropped the Belles-Îsles while the other half did the opposite to retain Belles-Îsles./ Les Belles-Îsles and the Belzile are therefore members of the Gagnon family.

The Gagnon and Belzile, who are from the Gagnon family, represent one of the most prolific families in Quebec. The surnames Gagnon and Belzile are carried by more than 82,000 people in Canada. The Gagnon family is recognized as the second largest strain family in Quebec since the 19th century censuses. By 2015, it is estimated that the Gagnon and Belzile families together have nearly 72,000 descendants in Quebec and 8,000 others in the rest of Canada. 

According to some research, there are also 20,000 Gagnon living in the United States. Finally, the current number of Gagnon and Belzile living in North America would be in the order of 100,000, which would place them in the 400th position of the top 50,000 surnames listed in North America. The Gagnon thus rank among the largest families on the North American continent.

(Source: Texts and images from "La Gagnonnière" magazine)

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