Getting Ahead of Myself with the Drouin Collection recently announced an “update” to their Drouin Collection. While I’m not certain what is in the update, it reminded me that I was at loose ends on a Joseph Desmarais/Demare, born in Quebec around 1820, and who lived much of his adult life in Clinton County, New York.

I was tempted to search for Joseph immediately. This would not really be the best thing to do. There are bound to be several Josephs in the database and I won’t really know which one is likely to be the one of interest. And while any record on Joseph in Clinton County that mentions Joseph’s birth would be providing secondary information (unless I can find a family bible), I don’t even have any sort of date of birth for him.

Nor do I have any idea of who his parents are.

Nor can I find him in the 1850 census even though his 1860 and later enumerations and information on his wife’s parents suggest that he was in New York State in 1850.

I also have not looked for church records in Clinton County that might provide additional information on Joseph.

In short I have not done my homework. So before I type names into search boxes for the Drouin Collection I am going to complete my research on Joseph in Clinton County.

About the Drouin Collection:

The Drouin Collection contains images of thousands of church records of vital events Quebec and Roman Catholic parishes in locations concentrating in Canada. has the following databases based on the Drouin Collection:

The index at to these records is to the principal person:

  • the child for baptisms
  • the bride and groom for marriages
  • the deceased for burials

The names of parents, usually included in the baptisms, are not included in the index.

More information on the Drouin Collection can be found on their website where subscriptions to images are also possible.


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