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Acadians on PEI

 

Professor J. Henri Blanchard

J. Henri Blanchard Native of Rustico 1881-1968 - teacher, historian, lecturer, patriot, he gave tirelessly of himself and showed unwavering enthusiasm for the Acadian cause, whose survival and development he believed depended less on claiming our rights than showcasing our natural talents and abilities.

Born: Oyster Bed Bridge, Rustico, June 16th 1881

Parents: The Honorable Jèrèmie Blanchard and Domithilde Gallant, Rustico Grand parents Sylvestre Blanchard and Virginie Doucet and, Ignace Gallant and Domithilde Buote, Rustico.

Education Primary: Duvar, Tignish and Queen Square in Charlottetown

Secondary: Prince of Wales College and Saint Dunstan's College in Charlottetown Summer School: Agricultural College in Guelph, Ont.; La Sorbonne in Paris, France

Marriage: On August 28th 1912, he espoused Ursula Gallant, the daughter of Dominique Gallant and Èdesse Doiron of Duvar, in Saint Anthony's Church in Bloomfield, P.E.I. They were the parents of eight children, (4 daughters and 4 sons).

Profession: He taught in the Public School System of P.E.I., entirely in the Acadian schools of Prince County, during a period of 10 years; Professor of French and Greek at Saint Dunstan's for 2 years; and Professor of French in particular and Botany at Prince of Wales College in Charlottetown for 38 years. For the years 1938 to his retirement in 1948, he served as Vice-Principal at P.W.C.

Publications:

  • Les Acadiens de l'Ile Saint-Jean (1921)
  • Histoire des Acadiens de l'Île-du-Prince-Èdouard (1927)
  • Rustico, une paroisse acadienne (1938)
  • Les Acadians of de l'Île-du-Prince-Èdouard (1956)
  • The Acadians of Prince Edward Island 1720-1964 in 1964
  • He contributed a great deal of material in the publication of "La paroisse Saint - Philippe et Saint-Jacques de Baie-Egmont" en 1962.

Active life: He was an excellent orator and considered a lecturer beyond compare. He passionately and relentlessly researched Acadian ancestory. He untiringly pursued the welfare of the Acadian Community:

  • The Acadian Teachers' Association - member, secretary and lecturer;
  • The Acadian Historical Society of P.E.I. - member, president and often times lecturer;
  • La Société National de l'accadie - member, treasurer, secretary, vice president, president and patron;
  • Le Conseil de la vie française en Amérique - co-founder, member;
  • The Federal District Commission of Ottawa - representative for P.E.I.
  • He also played an important role in Island organizations generally.
  • He is considered the precursor in the area of Island Acadian History.

Honours:

  • Medal and Prize of the French Language;
  • Medal of the French Academy;
  • Honour Diploma form "L'alliance Française" in Paris;
  • the Order of Merit for Acadian Education;
  • A Doctorate from Laval University; A Doctorate in Pedagogy from Saint Joseph's University in Memramcook, N.B.;
  • A Citation from the Governor of Louisiana;
  • "Le Prix Champlain";
  • the Order of Merit for French Education in Ontairo;
  • A Certificate from "La Société du Bon Parler français";
  • A bronze plaque from Le Conseil de la vie française en Amérique for his lifelong commitment to the French culture.

Death:

Following a 20 year period in retirement, J.Henri Blanchard passed away January 14th, 1968 in the Charlottetown Hospital. His largely attended funeral was held in Saint Dunstan's Basilica in Charlottetown, and his burial took place in the Catholic Cemetery in Charlottetown.

In Memorandum:

The plaque image at the left is located in the J. Henri Blanchard Library. It translates from French:

Respectful tribute in fond memory of a caring man of action, achievements and merit in the service of Acadians, and in particular the Acadians of PEI.

J. Henri Blanchard Native of Rustico 1881-1968

Teacher, historian, lecturer, patriot, he gave tirelessly of himself and showed unwavering enthusiasm for the Acadian cause, whose survival and development he believed depended less on claiming our rights than showcasing our natural talents and abilities. Because of that, this committed, sincere and spirited Acadian was able to touch hearts and deliver numerous scholarships for our young people. Tactful and considerate even in his flights of oratory, he became the indefatigable apostle of French perseverance, and valiantly incited his people to action. The Acadian and Francophone people of the Island offer him their sincere gratitude.

"The entire Island was his kingdom." Jerémie Pineau Official opening at the Centre Belle-Alliance, Summerside March 12, 2003

To view a video of his son Francis Blanchard speaking about him, CLICK HERE

Portrait of Acadian Teachers at Summer School in Miscouche

Acadian Teachers of P.E.I. at Summer School in Miscouche with their instructors and personalities form the Acadian Community, among which is Prof. J. Henri Blanchard

Portrait of Professor J.H.Blanchard

Professor J. H. Blanchard was an excellent orator and considered a lecturer beyond compare. He passionately and relentlessly researched Acadian ancestory.

Classroom in first Prince of Wales College

A classroom in the first Prince of Wales College which burned in 1931. J. Henri Blanchard is standing in front of the windows

Memorial Plaque found in the J. Henri Blanchard Library

The plaque image above is located in the J. Henri Blanchard Library. Details are written in the main text to the right.

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