MELANSON, CHARLES, ploughman, settler; b. 1643; d. some time before 1700.
Historians agree neither on his ethnic origin nor on the date of his arrival in Canada. Undeniably, he “came from Scotland”; but, as a notarial contract designated him “Sieur de La Ramée, and as his brother Pierre was nicknamed “La Verdure,” Placide Gaudet concluded that the family might have been of French origin, and that, because it was Huguenot, it might have emigrated to Scotland, whence it went to Acadia. Some writers claim that the Melansons, belonged to the settlement founded by Sir William Alexander, the younger, According to Placide Gaudet, the family arrived in the colony in 1657 with Governor Temple; it settled at Port-Royal; later it is thought to have emigrated to Boston, leaving in Acadia Pierre and Charles, the only members of the family whose names have been preserved in history.
The elder, Pierre, dit La Verdure, a tailor, husband of Marie-Marguerite Mius d’Entremont, was one of the founders of Grand-Pré. Charles, a “laboureur” (ploughman), according to the 1671 census, worked the paternal estate and became prosperous; in 1664, after renouncing Protestantism, he married Marie Dugas, by whom he had several children. Their descendants have been numerous.
Recensements de 1671, 1686. Placide Gaudet, notes correspondence, genealogical studies in the PAC and Université de Moncton; study published in Weymouth Free Press, 6 Jan. 1899. Bona Arsenault, L’Acadie des ancêtres: avec la généalogie des premières familles acadiennes (Québec, 1955), 39–41, 143–44. James Hannay, “Our first families,” New Brunswick Magazine, I (1898), 129, 177–86; II (1899), 92–96; III (1899), 17. Rameau de Saint-Père, Une colonie féodale. A. W. Savary, “The Acadian Melansons,” New Brunswick Magazine, I (1898), 360; II (1899), 222. The “Laverdure” referred to in PAC Report, 1912, App. E, 56, 58, and App. F, 69, may be Pierre.