Local boaters set course for River Bourgeois on September 1 to participate in the annual Boat Poker Run that is part of the annual River Bourgeois Festival. Pictured here are some of the boats going past St. John the Baptist Church.

Ephrem Boudreau was born in River Bourgeois in 1905. After his classical studies from 1922 to 1928 at the seminary at Trois Riviere, he spent three years at agricultural school at Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pocatiere. Here he earned bachelors’ degrees in arts and one in agricultural science. In addition, he acquired a diploma in Social Sciences from l’Universite de Laval in 1935.

In 1980, he published, in Editions d’Acadie, Moncton, the history of the Trappists in Nova Scotia (1823-1919) entitled Le Petit Clairvaux. He also authored Riviere Bourgeois from which this history is taken and translated.

Schools at Fond-du-Bras

The fifth school, Stella Maris, which opened in 1954, is no longer situated in le Fond-du-Bras but rather on the church hill and near the former one. It is a consolidated school replacing the two former schools in the parish. It was under the direction of Les Filles de Jesus whom, we have seen, lived in the old presbytery.

In 1954 there were five classrooms and an auditorium; 150 students attended. In 1959 there were seven classes and the number of students surpassed 230.

Transporting children to school by bus began with the opening of this new school. In the beginning, it was David Touesnard who transported the students with a bus that belonged to him and one provided by the school board. At the present time, during school hours, there are numerous buses on the roads of the parish.

Schools at Haut-du-Bras

The two schools that once existed at Haut-du-Bras were located at the same place near the house of Andre Fougere on Bord-du-Sud road. The first of these schools was very small with benches all along the walls. It was Felix Bourque who made the first desks.


Before the turn of the century, around 1895, there was a school at River Tillard at the end of the bridge on a small hill at the turn of the old road near St. Peter’s. Behind the school, there was a very large rock. When the road was straightened in the ‘30s, this rock was to the right of Route 4 going towards St. Peter’s.

The son of Michel Boudreau (the author’s uncle), who lived less than a mile from this school, attended there as a youth. Father John Kyte (1890-1978) and his brothers and sisters also studied at this school.

The Kyte family (Patrick) lived two steps from the school. Jean Boudreau (1885-1977) said that he and a few others took, during recess, a sled belonging to Pat Kyte (father of Rev. John) and brought it to the top of the hill (a lovely hill!) nearby. Coming down the steep slope the sled struck a tree. There were wounded including John Kyte. At that time, this was sufficient to create an incident. The authors of this prank were punished by the school master. The father of Father John Kyte went to see the father of Jean Boudreau (Michel) and Jean and his brothers who were involved in this affair were further punished. And so in a short time there were two punishments for this “crime.”