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 Hilaire Fortier

Hilaire Fortier

Saint-Malachie, Chaudiere-Appalaches Region, Quebec, Canada
Death 23 Jun 1928 (aged 61)
Yakima, Yakima County, Washington, USA
Burial Yakima, Yakima County, Washington, USA
Memorial ID 55533927 · View Source
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Hilaire was born December 21, 1866 in Saint Malachie, Quebec. His parents were Cyprien Fortier (1842-1941) and Marie Georgina Goulet (1866-1848), both originally from St-Gervais, a small village 12 miles to the south.

A side note - Hilaire's mother was the great great grand daughter of Francois Joseph Goulet (1711-1760), who was the great great great great grandfather of American singer and actor, Robert Gerald Goulet (1933-2007).

Hilaire grew up on the land of his father and learned farming and the trade of carpentry.

In 1878, when Hilaire was 12, Pierre Bottineau (1817-1895), a guide for the Northern Pacific Railroad, traveled to Quebec to encourage settlement of the newly formed towns of Red Lake Falls and Gentilly, Minnesota. That campaign started an exodus of young pioneer families from many small Quebec communities.

Six years later, 18 year old Hilaire followed that path from county Dorchester and settled in Crookston, becoming a naturalized citizen in 1885. He was an expert carpenter and made his living building houses.

It was there that he met Sara Jerome, the daughter of Fabien Regimbal dit Jerome and Salome LaBerge, whose family had migrated to the same town from St. Louis de Gonzague in 1882.

On January 13, 1895, Hilaire, age 27, wed 'Sarah', age 19. They moved to a farm in Gentilly, 8 mile east of Crookston.

Nine months and 4 days later, they welcomed their first child, Avilla Hilaire, born Oct. 17, 1895. In June of 1897, the couple became parents to Georgianna.

Lured by the offer of cheap land in a newly irrigated area of the Yakima Valley in Washington State, the Fortier family joined others in Crookston to begin a free journey by train to Moxee City. They traveled west inside retrofitted boxcars filled with people; their livestock, and goods.

Seven more children, Amanda Marie (1899-1987), Rosario Alphonse (1900-1976), Rosalie Marie (1902-1950), Odilon E 'Dill' (1904-1962), Genevieve Marie (1906-1950), Jane Marie (1907-1993), and Augustine Antoinette (1909-1973), were born into the family in Moxee City.

On October 22, 1900 at 12 midnight, Hilaire was naturalized a citizen of the United States.

The couple moved to North Yakima in 1910 where their last child, Helen Julia (1913-1980) was born.

One month after Helen's birth, Sara became ill with pneumonia and died. Hilaire's infant daughter was sent to live with her grandmother, Salome Regimbal, who raised her while Hilaire worked to feed his nine other children.

During that time, to help his family, his 17 year old son, Avilla went to work as a clerk at his grandfather's grocery business, 'F. Regimbal & Son'.

Hilaire saw his son Avilla go off to war in 1917, and return to marry Muriel Hutchings in 1920. He witnessed the marriages of Amanda and Rosalie, and the birth of 6 of his grandchildren.

But in 1928, at the age of 62, Hilaire lost his battle with stomach cancer, and passed away at home, in the company of his children. He was buried with his wife, Sarah in Calvary Cemetery, in Yakima on June 24, 1928.




  • Created by: SB°ancestry
  • Added: 27 Jul 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 55533927
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Hilaire Fortier (21 Dec 1866–23 Jun 1928), Find A Grave Memorial no. 55533927, citing Calvary Cemetery, Yakima, Yakima County, Washington, USA ; Maintained by SB°ancestry (contributor 47325517) .