Bio: Marcel Gagnon

Marcel Gagnon

Lucien Gagnon was a patriot fighting the British in Quebec. He led several battles earning a sentence of death if captured. Lucien went back and forth to Upper New York to rest and regroup for the next foray with the British. He was wounded twice in battle. The British burned his farm, driving his wife and children out. They joined him in New York. He died 7 January 1842 in Champlain, New York. Per his wishes, his family buried him in St Valentin, Quebec.

Medard was born in 1819, St Valentin, Quebec to Lucian and Catherin Cartier Gagnon. He also took part in the patriot uprising. He was imprisoned 13 February 1838.

Marcel was born on 7 September 1831, St Valentin, Quebec, to Lucian and Sophia Regnier Gagnon.

Lucien was born 1836, St Valentin, Quebec to Lucien and Sophia Regnier Gagnon.

In December 1849, at the age of 18, Marcel applied for and receive his United States Citizenship in the city of New York. Upon becoming a citizen, he could apply for land grants in the United States.

Along with two brother, Lucien and Medard, Marcel traveled by ship around Cape Horn landing in San Francisco. The brothers took part in the California gold rush for a time and fought Indians in the area. Marcel, not believing that San Francisco would amount to much of a town, continued North to the French Prairie and then to Frenchtown. He was here during the Treaty Council of 1855.

Marcel and Medard took up homesteads. Medard later sold his property to Clement Bergevin.

On 25 February 1864, Marcel married Rosalie Dauphin at St Rose Mission at Frenchtown. To this union there were seven children – Lucien, Jeremy, Sophia, Selina, Marcel Jr., and Peter.

3 April 1877 Marcel and Rosalie donated land to Bishop Broillet to have a new church built. The Catholic Church records state that brothers Marcel, Medard, and Lucien either gave or sold land for the Frenchtown cemetery. It sits on a hill adjoining the church property at that time. When father Richard blessed the cemetery he also blessed the wooden cross that was erected at the site, made by Marcel. The new wooden cross that now stands on the hill at the cemetery was made by great, great, great grandson of Louis Marcel Gagnon of Waitsburg.

Rosalie died on 18 May 1878 and was buried at the St Rose Cemetery.

Marcel married Julia Raymond, aged 18 and 44 years younger than Marcel. Of this union a son was born and died in 1880. Julia and son, Benjamin are buried at the St Rose Cemetery.

After his children received allotments and moved to the reservation, Marcel tried prospecting for gold again in Idaho and the Yukon Territory of Canada. When the Alaskan gold rush started, Marcel decided her was too old and instead reestablished residence in the Walla Walla Valley.

Marcel was living in Walla Walla at the time of his death 1 March 1912. He was buried at St Rose Cemetery, being one of the last burials there.

Medard died and is also buried at St Rose Cemetery.

No record of Lucien has been discovered after the 1892 Washington Territory Census, where he was living with nephew Pierre (Cyril) Gagnon, Moses and Esther Tessier on Mud Creek.

Great, Great Grandson Cecil Louis Gagnon has the Musket that Marcel carried on his journey from Quebec, Canada.

Another brother, Pierre, arrived in Frenchtown during 1868. Pierre was born 2 October 1822 to Lucien and Catherine Cartier Gagnon in St Valentin, Quebec. He was part of the survey party plotting the road from Montana to Portland during 1877-1880. Pierre became a United States citizen on 19 March 1878 in the territory of Washington, county of Walla Walla. He died 29 November 1910. His son, Pierre Jr. (Cyril) came in 1880. Cyril lived with Moses Tessier and Esther Belique Herbert Tessier. On the 1900 Census, he was listed as their “nephew”. Cyril was a farmer living at Frenchtown by Mus Creek. Cyril was born 1861, Quebec, Canada and died 28 April 1930.

Pierre and Cyril are buried in Mountain View cemetery, Walla Walla near Moses and Esther Tessier, Narcisse and Mary Sophie Belique Cornoyer, Joseph Phillip Gagnon, Ignatius Gagnon, and Amelia Gagnon Breneman. Joseph, Ignatius, and Amelia are the children of Marcel and Louisa Remillard Gagnon Jr.