FARIBAULT, BARTHÉLEMY, notary and office holder; b. 26 April 1728 in Montbizot, France, son of Bernard Faribault and Madelaine Hamon; m. 3 Sept. 1761 Catherine-Antoine Véronneau in Saint-François-du-Lac (Que.), and they had ten children; d. 21 June 1801 in Berthier-en-Haut (Berthierville), Lower Canada.
Barthélemy Faribault belonged to a family trained in the law: his father and three of his brothers were notaries. Seeking to follow the same path, Faribault became a notary in Paris. How long he practised in his native land is not known. He came to New France as military secretary to Governor Ange Duquesne* de Menneville about 1752. From 1755 to 1760 he held the post of scrivener in the Bureau de l’Intendance (Bureau de la Marine) at Quebec and in the last year received a salary of 1,200 livres.
Faribault decided to remain in the country after the conquest; in 1760 he settled in Bécancour and tried to set up a business there. Probably because of the economic instability of the colony at that time, he gave this project up in favour of returning to the notarial profession. On 22 July 1763 he received a commission from Major-General Thomas Gage* authorizing him to practise at Berthier-en-Haut, Île Dupas, Lanoraie (Lanoraie-d’Autray), Lavaltrie, and Saint-Sulpice, provided that he establish residence in Berthier-en-Haut. He was probably the first notary to receive such a commission under the British régime. He remained at Berthier-en-Haut as a notary until 1790.
Soon after his arrival Faribault had acquired as clients Pierre-Noël Courthiau, seigneur of Berthier, and several of his censitaires, who consulted him on land sales or for confirmation of title deeds. On 16 April 1765 he obtained the grant of a site on which he built his residence. Ownership of the seigneury passed that year to James Cuthbert*, who, like his predecessor, continued to transact his affairs with Faribault. For example, the notary was asked to draw up the notarial contracts for the building of St Andrew’s, a Protestant church, in 1786 and 1787.
Relations between Faribault and Cuthbert gradually deteriorated, however, particularly after the notary refused the hand of one of his daughters to Alexander Cuthbert, the seigneur’s son, in 1789. The situation grew worse the following year after Faribault attempted to settle an ongoing quarrel between James Cuthbert and Jean-Baptiste-Noël Pouget, parish priest of Sainte-Geneviève-de-Berthier (at Berthierville). Offended and infuriated by Faribault’s attitude, Cuthbert made life unbearable for him; he prevented his censitaires from having recourse to his services and even threatened him with death. Faribault recounted this episode in a four-page poem composed in alexandrine verse.
Since he had a commission issued in 1784 that authorized him to practise as a notary anywhere in the province, Faribault decided in 1790 to take up residence at L’Assomption in order to escape Cuthbert’s reprisals. He did not return to Berthier-en-Haut until 30 Sept. 1798, a few days after the seigneur had died.
Little else is known about Faribault’s life. On 1 Aug. 1780 he had complained to Governor Haldimand about the exactions he had suffered from Captain Olivier in connection with the billeting of soldiers. Because of his status as a notary it was acknowledged that he might henceforth be exempted from the obligation. Other than this incident and his differences with Cuthbert, Faribault probably led a quiet life centred largely on his profession and family. The records mention his participation in higher office in the region only in 1792, when he was appointed commissioner of the Court of Requests at L’Assomption and returning officer for the riding of Leinster.
When he died in 1801, Barthélemy Faribault owned a piece of land one arpent square with a house and small stable, as well as a lot next to his place of residence. His personal estate was sold for £918. Judging by the law-books in his library, Faribault was undoubtedly a learned man. He probably passed on to his sons a liking for the notarial profession, since three of them followed in his footsteps, including Joseph Édouard*, who did his training with him.
AD, Sarthe (Le Mans), État civil, Montbizot, 26 avril 1728. AN, Col., D2C, 47; 48 (copies at PAC). ANQ-M, CN1-308, 16 avril 1765; CN3-31, M.-L. de Glandon-Desdevens, 4 juill. 1801; CS1-1-11, Doc. de la famille Faribault. AP, Sainte-Geneviève-de-Berthier (Berthierville), Reg. des baptêmes, mariages et sépultures, 23 juin 1801; Saint-François-du-Lac, Reg. des baptêmes, mariages et sépultures, 3 sept. 1761. Bibliothèque de la ville de Montréal, Salle Gagnon,