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Dear America Wiki

"I explained to him that only my arms have been tattooed with my totem, so that it is always with me. Holding my head high, I told him not to misunderstand—I am not ashamed of how I look or what I am. Rather, I am proud of it. I just do not like being the object of anyone's staring."
—Geneviève Aubuchon[4]

Geneviève Aubuchon (born Miguen; c. 1747 – April 14, 1808) was the younger sister of Chegual. Following their parents' deaths, they were taken in by Claire Pastorel and her late husband Jacques Aubuchon. In 1759, Geneviève decided to remain in Québec with her adoptive mother during the British attacks, including the Battle of the Plains of Abraham.


Early life[]

Geneviève was born Miguen, meaning "feather," around 1747 to Abenaki (Alnanbal) parents.[1] She had a brother Chegual, who was four years older. When she was around five, she and her brother were the only survivors of an attack on their village. They were later found by voyageurs, who brought them to Québec. Claire Pastorel and her husband Jacques Aubuchon adopted the children.

The same year M. Jacques died, Geneviève began her education with the School of the Ursulines at seven-years-old. In the summer of 1757, Chegual and his friend Étienne L'Aubépine ran away to join the Abenaki at the St. Francis mission.

British siege[]

In the spring of 1759, Geneviève was excited when Chegual and Étienne returned to Québec with a party of Abenaki. They agreed to stay at Madame Claire's home, where they slept in the kitchen. Chegual eventually revealed that he returned to convince Geneviève to leave the city due to the oncoming threat of a British invasion. He attempted several times, but she had no wish to abandon her loved ones, including her adoptive mother, their servants Madame Babin "Cook" and Madeleine, and her mentor Mère Esther. Chegual agreed to stay with her, telling her "Then you may be choosing death, sister. If that is so, I will die with you." British warships reached a nearby river the following June.

Just a few weeks later, the British began attacking the city with bombs, forcing Geneviève and her family to evacuate. They headed first to Hôtel-Dieu, before relocating to Claire's other house in Haute-Ville. Chegual and Étienne later returned to the old house to salvage what had not been damaged from fire. In September, Geneviève lost contact with Chegual and Étienne after the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. The British won the battle and Québec had surrendered, bringing about several changes for the residents. Several days later, Chegual, being badly wounded, was brought to Hôtel-Dieu. Geneviève carefully took care of his wounds and refused to leave his side for several days.

In October, Geneviève learned of Étienne's death. Due to her grief, she allowed hate to fester in her heart. Geneviève directed some of this hate towards a wounded Scotsman, named Andrew Doig, at the hospital. She eventually confessed her feelings to Père Segard, who assigned her penance to nurse Andrew. Père Segard later arranged for Andrew to be billeted at her house. She resented Andrew at first, but began to warm up to him after reading his journal. They became close friends as they got to know each other better and started calling each other by their first names. On New Years' Day, Claire's hawthorn tree began to bloom. Geneviève saw it as a sign from Étienne, whose last name meant "hawthorn."

December 1760[]

In early December 1760, Geneviève went to Montréal for the funeral of Claire's uncle, Balthazar Bélanger. In his will, he bequeathed a slave, named Pìtku, to his niece. On the way back home, Pìtku ran away after Chegual scoled him. Within a few days, Andrew and his cousin Johnathan Stewart found Pìtku, whom had followed them to Québec after all. Geneviève worried about Pìtku since he could not speak, but he was able to communicate with Chegual via sign language. The Christmas season passed by enjoyably. On New Years' Day, Andrew surprised Geneviève with a crèche that he constructed with Pìtku and Chegual. Pìtku then said "Bonne Année, Geneviève," which left her overjoyed.

Later life[]

Geneviève continued volunteering at the Ursuline school and hospital. In 1763, Andrew asked Chegual for Geneviève's hand in marriage, before sailing to France in order to settle his grandfather's will. They were married two years later on June 7, 1765. Andrew arranged for their home to be built on the site Claire's old home, which she had given them as part of Geneviève's dowry. Andrew also established a publishing business up the street. They had six children, Étienne, David, Guillaume, Seamus, John, and Jeanette. In 1807, the family business was left to their eldest son. The following spring, the couple went on a vacation to Scotland. Geneviève and Andrew died there of pneumonia on April 14, 1808.

Physical appearance[]

Geneviève described her face as distinctly Abenaki, which became more pronounced as she aged. She had black hair, "tawny skin" and "dark eyes."[3] Geneviève had tattoos on her upper arms, which were usually covered by her sleeves. Tattoos were an Abenaki custom and she would have had more if she had not been orphaned.[4]

Personality and traits[]

In general, Geneviève was a kind, thoughtful person whom cared for people and animals. She had some knowledge in healing, assisting at the hospital and having experience with salves. Geneviève was educated by the Ursulines nuns, giving her a love for reading and writing. She was proficient in French and Abenaki, and spoke a little English. The war greatly changed Geneviève. She began to harbor hatred towards their enemy, the British. This hatred grew when she lost Étienne, leading her to lash out at Andrew. However, as she got to know Andrew, she was able to properly grieve Étienne.

Family tree[]

The Aubuchon-Doig Family Tree
(d. 1752?)
(b. 1743)

Andrew Doig
Étienne Doig
(b. 1767)
David Doig
Guillaume Doig
Seamus Doig
John Doig
Jeanette Doig
(b. 1785)

Behind the scenes[]



See also[]

Dear Canada characters
Main characters

Hélène St. Onge | Sophie Loveridge | Angélique Richard | Geneviève Aubuchon | Mary MacDonald
Susanna Merritt | Isobel Scott | Arabella Stevenson | Johanna Leary | Jenna Sinclair | Harriet Palmer
Julia May Jackson | Rosie Dunn | Kathleen "Kate" Cameron | Josephine Bouvier | Flora Rutherford
Tryphena "Triffie" Winsor | Victoria Cope | Abby Roberts | Dorothy Wilton | Anya Soloniuk | Eliza Bates
Charlotte Blackburn | Fiona Macgregor | Chin Mei-ling | Ivy Weatherall | Sally Cohen | Noreen Robertson
Charlotte Twiss | Mary Kobayashi | Devorah Bernstein | Rose Rabinowitz | Violet Pesheens

Supporting characters

Marianna Wilson | Jane Browning

Lists of characters by book

Alone in an Untamed Land | Winter of Peril | Banished from Our Home | The Death of My Country
With Nothing But Our Courage | Whispers of War | Footsteps in the Snow | A Rebel's Daughter
A Sea of Sorrows | Where the River Takes Me | A Trail of Broken Dreams | A Desperate Road to Freedom
A Country of Our Own | A Ribbon of Shining Steel | Blood Upon Our Land | Days of Toil and Tears
Flame and Ashes | Orphan at My Door | All Fall Down | That Fatal Night | Prisoners in the Promised Land
Brothers Far from Home | No Safe Harbour | If I Die Before I Wake | An Ocean Apart
A Prairie as Wide as the Sea | Not a Nickel to Spare | To Stand On My Own | Exiles from the War
Turned Away | Torn Apart | Pieces of the Past | These Are My Words