Patureau Passings

I heard some sad news yesterday relating to the Patureau extended family.  My dad’s first cousin died.  Melwyn Mary Marionneaux Barker (1930-2018) was the daughter of Sylvie Albine Patureau Marionneaux (1903-1962).  My dad Robert Joseph “Bob” Landry, Jr. was the son of Sylvie’s sister Germaine Erie Patureau Landry (1895-1973).  Sylvie and Erie were the daughters of Vincent Maximilian “Grampa Max” Patureau (1865-1935).  Melwyn was one of the sweetest people that I have ever met.  She always had such a welcoming smile and demeanor.  I’ll miss seeing her at the Plaquemine cousin events.

The other sad thing that happened relates to a sibling of Grampa Max.  Max had an older brother named Leobon (1851-1928).  I posted a photo of the two brothers a while back.  Leobon had a son named Charles Allen Patureau (1887-1956) and on the day before Melwyn died, a son of Allen named Edward Andrew “Ned” Patureau (1933-2018) passed away as well.  He was my dad and Melwyn’s second cousin, and he seemed like a kind and gentle person.  I have read some remembrances of him that make me think he was a genuinely good person.

Ferdinand Pierre Patureau and Marie Emma Landry Patureau’s family circa 1864.

So in honor of these two wonderful people who were second cousins to each other, I’m posting a Patureau family treasure.  It’s the oldest photo that I have of the Patureau family.  It’s a photo of Max and Leobon’s Patureau family in about 1864.  Their parents were Ferdinand Pierre Patureau (1827-1877) and Marie Emma Landry Patureau (1829-1892).  This is the only photo of Emma Patureau that I know of.

It’s not the best of photos, but it’s better than nothing.  It’s actually a scan of a Xerox copy that my dad had.  I don’t know where it came from, but I’m on the lookout for a better copy. (Hooray! The original has survived and it is in a collection in Beaumont, Texas.  In case you were wondering, you are not seeing the terrible Xerox copy, you’re seeing the new improved photo. Updated 1/16/2022) That’s why I put off using the photo before.  But for this occasion I thought I’d share it.  I did work on Emma’s face and the background a little, but it is a rough photo to work with. (Here is an improved version from the original that I found.)

Let me tell you a little bit (or maybe a lot!) about this family.  Emma and Ferdinand were married on Feb. 10, 1847, and she gave birth to their 16 children over a 25 year period.  Doesn’t that sound fun?!  Their first child was Elizabeth Zulma Patureau (1848-1924) who was never married.  I believe she is the older girl in the back on the right of this photo.  I have another photo of her that looks like this.  The next daughter to be born was the other older girl on the left.  Her name was Marie Aline Patureau (1849-1946) and she later married Joseph Omer Hebert.  Their son was one of the banjo players (Ferdinand Hebert) in a previous post.

The next child born was Leobon.  He is the young man standing proudly in front of his father in this photo.  This is a really big family line on its own.  Leobon and his wife Amelia Hebert (sister of Marie Aline’s husband Joseph Omer Hebert) had twelve children, including Carolyn Wilkinson (I posted a photo of her two weeks ago).  Since it was just two weeks ago that I talked about that DNA connection, I won’t mention all of the other DNA matches that I’ve found from this line of Patureau kin.

After Leobon came a daughter named Marie Valentine in 1853.  She lived for just over a year, so did not survive to be in this photo.  Elizabeth Palmire Patureau (1855-1870) was the next one born.  I think she is the young girl standing in the front on the right.  She is in the photo, but only lived for another six years or so.  She died at the age of 14.  After her there was an infant son that was born and died somewhere around 1856 or 1857.  Then in 1857 Mary Zelica Patureau (d. 1925) was born.  She is most likely the young girl in the front on the left.  She first married Roger Allain, but after his death she married Louis Hebert, the brother of Amelia and Joseph Omer.

The next child born was Ferdinand Pierre Patureau, Jr.  He was born in 1858 and only lived for two years.  If you are counting, that would make 8 births in 10 years (only halfway through the children) with 5 children making it past two years in age.  Modern medicine has cut down on infant mortality.  For the most part, we are better off than most of our ancestors in this respect.  This brings us to the next two children who also had short lives.

Anne Emma Patureau was born in 1860 and she survived to be in this photo.  She is the youngest girl standing next to her older brother Leobon.  She looks to be 3 or 4 years old in this photo and she only lives to be about 13 years old. The next child born was Joseph Onesime Patureau who was born in early 1862 and died about six months later.  Next came Rose Elisa Patureau (1863-1940) who lived to the respectable age of 76.  She was married to Hypolite Victor Dupuy and they had three sons and a daughter together.  She was the last child born to Ferdinand and Emma when this photo was taken.  She is the little girl in her mother Emma’s arms.

The date of this photo was determined based on the approximate ages of the children, their sexes, birth order, and how long they lived.  With the number of children increasing and decreasing through the years, the date of 1864 is the only year that seems to fit with the details of the family in the photo.  My only disappointment with the photo is that it was taken just about a year before Grampa Max was born.  I know that he was born in Mexico and I’m not sure when they moved there.  So I’m also not sure if the photo was taken in Louisiana or Mexico. (The back of the original photo I saw in 2021 shows that it was made in New Orleans, Louisiana.)

As you can figure, Vincent Maximilian was born in 1865, followed by Pierre Oscar in 1866 (-1926).  He was married to a Domitille Dupuy.  I’m sure she was related somehow to Elisa’s Hypolite, but I don’t know how closely they were related.  A lot of the information on this family line came from a DNA match at 23andMe, including a sad story that I may share with you all one day.  After Pierre Oscar came Joseph Alcide (1868-1919), another sibling that never married.

I know you’ve been wondering when this next one would show up.  “Where is that other banjo playing Patureau?” you wanted to know.  Well here he is.  Abel Omer Patureau (1870-1917) was a member of Kelly’s String Band and was married to Eunice Constance Pefferkorn.  They had eleven children and their family group is quite large, with many living in southern Louisiana.

And finally we come to the baby of the family.  Marie Victorine (1873-1937) was married to William Albert Cropper and they had a dozen children.  They must have been competing to see who could have the most children.  I never stopped to count how many grandchildren that Ferdinand and Emma had, but I’m sure it’s a rather large number.  Victorine’s family lived in Beaumont, Texas, and a lot of the family still lives in that area.

So there it is.  The family that led to all of the Patureau descendants in southern Louisiana, including our very own Melwyn Barker and Ned Patureau.  Here’s to these two wonderful people.  May we live up to the excellent examples their lives exemplified.

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