Among all the projects aimed at installing the Acadian refugees in France, the original one considered for the creation of an establishment in the communes of Archigny, La Puye and Monthoiron, was very successful.
For 10 years the Marquis de Pérusse des Cars would fight to conclude it.
In 1773, the Terray abbot asks for the construction of 30 houses, but with the difficulties of finding workmen and material, the Marquis de Pérusse des Cars decides to build only 15 houses the first year.
The gathering of stones necessary for construction would have been impossible. The first thought was to build the houses out of wood, but they would have had to be replaced at the end of a few years.
The Marquis de Pérusse des Cars then has the idea to make them build as those which had been seen in Normandy, out of pisé (or bousillis), a mixture of sandy argile soil and giant heather (Erica scoparia) two very common materials in the area and on the grounds of the future colony.
Detail of the structure of a wall
Since there was no one available in the area for this type of construction, carpenters from the area of Cherbourg are brought in to show the masons this technique of construction.
The walls, a thickness of 50cm, are high on a base of large flint.
The Papuchon General in his study on "The Acadian Colony of Poitou" in 1908, gives 3 types of house plans: Plan N°1, Plan N°2, Plan N°3.
On July 5, 1773 the houses are started. Lemoyne requires that each house be well isolated from the others in order to avoid fires, to leave space for future extensions and enough room to make a large garden.
The houses are gathered by village not exceeding 8 constructions so that the grounds are not too far away from the dwellings.
The first 15 houses are those which one always sees bordering the road between Archigny and La Puye.
At the end of October 1773 the first Acadians arrive at Chatellerault, the houses are not finished and the problem is how to place 362 families in 15 houses.
While waiting, the Acadians are placed in Chatellerault with the neighbors. The first families will move in at the beginning of 1774.
Distribution of the houses in 1774.
|The State of distribution for 45 dwellings forming parts of a greater number which were built by command of the King in the moors of Cenan in Poitou for the Acadian families.|
|1 Martin PORCHERON
2 Joseph BRAULT
3 Hilaire GAUTROT
4 Guillaume SEIGUE
5 Gabriel BAULU
6 Pierre FAULCON
8 Charles NAQUIN
9 Ambroise GUILLOT
12 Gabriel BERBUDEAU
13 Marin DAIGLE
14 Pierre BOUDROT
15 M. DAIGLE
|16 P. BOUDROT
17 François DAIGLE
18 G. BERBUDEAU
19 F. DAIGLE
20 François ARBOUR
22 Nicolas ALBERT
23 Pierre HEBERT
24 Pierre MARTIN
25 R. GUILLOT
26 René GUILLOT
28 Martial ARNAUD
29 René BAUDEAU
30 Joseph LAMESTRE
|31 Joseph DOUCET
32 J. DOUCET
33 Jean POUGET
36 Jacques BUNEL
38 Jérome LACROIX
39 Jean Baptiste BOUDROT (père)
40 Jean Baptiste BOUDROT (fils)
43 François SAUNIER
44 Augustin DOUCET
45 Pierre MELANCON
56 Dominique BRIONNE
State of distribution of the houses in 1777
Alphabetical list of Acadians having received a house in the colony
In July 1775 all the farms were built. In October 1775 there are the first departures from Chatellerault to Nantes. In May 1776, there does not remain any more of the colony except for 25 families, 157 people.
Plan of the Acadian line (click on the red points to reach the photographs)
Additional information is in the work of Guy Charles BUGEON: "Acadian Farms of Poitou and their occupants of 1774 to 1793". One can obtain this work in "The Acadian Cousins of Poitou."
The Farm-Museum of Archigny - The Acadian Farm-Museum of Archigny, France.