Bashant Family Website


             Bachant, France                               


                   Present day Bachant, France

The following commentary is edited from Bachand Family History by Albert Bachand in a Bachand Lycos bulletin board posting in June 2000.

All Bachands are related to each other however close or far back and within a dozen generations, whether their names are spelled Bachan, Bachand, Bachands, Bacham, Bachamp, Bachant, Bascam, Bachien, Vertefeuille and sometimes even Greenleaf.

There are an estimated over 5000 Bachands living today in well over 1000 families. They are spread over U.S. and Canada, especially eastern Canada and northeast United States.

Origin of the name Bachand

The Bachand name originated between 1600 and 1640 in the still existing town of Bachant, France. There are no records of Bachands in Europe, not even in cemeteries, except for descendants who moved back there from America. Jacqueline Bouvier, wife of ex-president John F. Kennedy, has several Bachands in her ancestry. There is a Bachand buried in Arlington Nat. Cemetery in Wash. D.C. a short distance from the grave of President Kennedy and the tomb of the unknown soldier.

The name was popularized by Nicolas Bachan I of Bachant, France. The town was once part of Hainaut in the diocese of Cambrai now part of Belgium. The population in 1913 was 1,155, 1n 1936 2,084. A fire destroyed the town in 1946 and the population dropped to 1,224. In 1954 it was 2,054, in 1962 2,568.

Bachant is north of Paris near the Belgium border in the dept. du Nord in the legal boundary of Avesnes in the township of Bertaimont near the Sambre River bridge. It’s on national Highway 359 between Aulnoye, Maubeuge and Hautmont in the province of Artois. It’s on railroad S.N.C.F. which travels between Brussels Belgium and Paris. Its altitude is 412 feet.

How the name Bachand originated

Way back in those days most people had but one name. Some were differentiated by what the person did or lived, etc. thus a blacksmith named John was called John the smithy, which became John Smith. If he lived by a river he may have been called John Rivers. If Erick had a son he was called Erickson, etc.

Bachand name a derivative of low dogs? Legend, or fact, has it the name originated in 1123 when there was a family who raised low slung dogs today called Bassett Hounds. Low dog in French is << Bas chien >>. In 1159, the name became Bascam, then Bachan. Nicolas I changed it to Bachant. Today, the Bachand spelling is the one most commonly used.

Name Suffixes

Generations ago it was quite common for some families to add other descriptive words to their names. A fairly common one attached to Bachand was dit Vertefeuille (in English “say Greenleaf “). Another was dit Mathias, etc. Most Bachands today are from the dit Vertefeuille branch.

Nicholas I was born in what is today Bachant, France. The town was named for him. He operated a huge farm, which eventually became the whole town. He sold it and moved to St-Cloude in the diocese de Versailles, île de France, formerly diocese de Versailles and a suburb of Paris.

Nicholas Bachan I

Nicolas I married Marie Pineau there in the Paris suburb. They had one son, Nicolas II. Nicolas II, then 18, joined the French army. His detachment was sent to Canada, then, controlled by France. They landed in 1687 on an island now called Ste-Marguerite in the St-Lawrence River between Montreal and Boucherville, P.Q. He was the first to use dit Vertefeuille at the end of his name. It is said he adopted the suffix because he loved the greenery of the area trees.

Boucherville, P.Q.

On the south bank of the St-Lawrence opposite Montreal is where Nicolas II settled. The town celebrated it’s tri-centennial of it’s founding in 1967. Then a monument in front of the town hall was dedicated to the pioneer families of the town was unveiled. [See pictures on the Bachand Page of this website] Among about 50 families inscribed on it Bachand because of its alphabetical place appears second. A Street there was also given the name, as there are in several towns in the Province of Quebec, including one in front of Sherbrooke University.

All Bachands are descendants of Nicolas II and Ann Lamoureux

In those pioneer days soldiers were not quartered in barracks or in camps, there were none. The soldiers were distributed in the homes of farmers of the area. Couriers were sent to assemble them when needed. Nicolas II was quartered with a farmer by the name of Louis Lamoureux.

One of the children was Marie Ann, born September 9, 1678. Her mother was Françoise Boivin. Nicolas II, now 24, wanted to marry her but she was but 13. The church allowed the marriage when she was 14. They were married December 4, 1692. Nicolas died February 26, 1709. This all happened in Boucherville.

It is hoped this capsule Bachand history has inspired the reader to delve into his own lineage.

Bridge across the Sombre River to Bachant France

Photo by Pierre Lavaurs, April 15. 1996

Bachant FR, Pre WWI [1910]

Distruction to Bachant, FR during WWI [1914]

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