Canadian Besner Family of French Origins

The ancestor of French Canadian Besner family was of the company of Mr. Le Borgne at the time of his marriage

The ancestor of French Canadian Besner family's marriage contract informs us that the soldier Jean Bézanaire was part of, at "this moment", of Mr Le Borgne's company. We would need to know which one, since, just to add a complication, there were two servicemen of that name under the French Regime.

There was the Knight LeBorgne, who arrived in Canada with Montcalm's army and died in France in 1767. If it was him, we do not have enough data on his career to talk about it.

There was Paul LeBorgne, born in 1717, arrived in Canada in 1744 and died in France in 1789. If it was him, we know who this man was.

Paul Le Borgne was a career serviceman. He was promoted to midshipman in 1753, and sub-lieutenant in 1757. He became lieutenant in 1758 and captain in 1760 in the "Compagnies Franches de la Marine" in Canada.

He has been described as a man with lots of worth, intelligence and capable of all that was entrusted to him, accurate and of remarkable integrity. On July 8th 1755, he got his arm broken during the military engagement which resulted in the defeat of General Edward Braddock's English Armies at Fort Duquesne (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), where he was lieutenant of Captain Daniel-Hyacinthe Liénard de Beaujeu's company, where the latter lost his life. This famous Canadian victory, called "La Monongaëla", ( "La Malengueulée" the French called it) was won by a hundred soldiers from the "Compagnies Franches de la Marine" who fought at the sides of 150 Canadian Militiamen and 600 Autochthonous allies who wiped out an army of about 1500 men.

The New World

New France was situated on a territory that is today shared by Canada and the United States; at the time of the French-Indian War (1750-1760) the territories shown in white belonged to France, the rest belonged to England and to Spain.

Fort Duquesne, above at right, preceded Pittsburgh's Fort Pitt.

We find Paul Le Borgne amongst the officers who run the "Régiment de la Marine", this contingent of 500 soldiers of the "Compagnies Franches de la Marine" that the Governor General, the Marquis of Vaudreuil, decided to add themselves to the regular troops of the Marquis of Montcalm, in July 1757, to better be able to face the increasing military difficulties.

In 1758, he replaces Captain Daneau DeMuy, who died in combat of Detroit. The last reference to Mr. Le Borgne in Canada places him , in February 1760, at the winter camp at Point-aux-Trembles (Neuville in Portneuf) with the armies of the Marshal of Lévis where they had taken refuge after the Plains of Abraham's defeat in September 1759.

We heard of Mr. Le Borgne during the April 28th 1760 affair, where the Marshal of Lévis, wanting to take back Québec, left Neuville with 3000 soldiers gathered in Montreal; the Canadian troops defeated Murray and his 3000 English soldiers who met them in Ste-Foy. Victory, however, made pointless when the seat of Québec was suspended at the arrival of an English squadron on May 15th. The ancestor of French Canadian Besner family, married since the month of February, was therefore also there.

Captain Le Borgne nevertheless returned to France when the English conqueror gave him the opportunity in September 1760. We know moreover that, in 1765, he was a lieutenant in the voluntary corps in Africa.

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