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François Savoie (abt. 1621)

François Savoie aka Savoye
Born about in Francemap
Son of [uncertain] and [uncertain]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married about 1651 in Acadie, Nouvelle-Francemap
Descendants descendants
Died [date unknown] in Acadiemap [uncertain]
Profile last modified | Created 14 Apr 2010
This page has been accessed 22,485 times.
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François Savoie is an Acadian.
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François Savoie migrated from France to Acadia.
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François Savoie is the Ancestral Patriarch of the Acadian Savoie Family

François was born around 1621. [1] Many people say that François was the illegitimate son of Tomaso Francesco, but this has not been proven or disproven. It is most likely the wishful thinking of researchers who want to find a royal connection. Regarding François' location of birth, Stephen White remains silent.[2]

However Massignon[3] speculates that he may have come from Martaizé, near Loudun, France because the name Savoie is among the many Acadian names that are found in the nearby Seigneury d'Aulnay (comprising of the villages of Angliers, Aulnay, Martaizé and La Chausée).[4] However, Francois' birth record has not been found.

François probably came to Acadia around 1643.[5][6] He married Catherine Lejeune approximately in 1651 in Acadia but the exact place is not known.[7][8] Between 1652 and 1670, they had 9 children: Françoise, Germain, Marie, Jeanne, Catherine, François, Barnabé, Andrée and Marie France.[2]

While François and Catherine were raising their family, Port-Royal was captured in 1654 by Robert Sedgwick, who led 300 British soldiers and volunteers.[9]:

"The [French] soldiers at Port-Royal, who numbered about 130 … put up a brief defense against Sedgwick. Setting up an ambush between the landing site of the English troops and the fort, the Frenchmen fired on the attackers but proved no match for the experienced Roundheads. The French soon "took their heels to ye Fort." On August 16 the fort surrendered... Sedgwick granted honourable terms, allowing the defenders to march out of the fort with flags flying, drums beating, and muskets at the ready. The soldiers and employees working at the fort were offered transportation back to France and given enough pelts to cover their wages."[10]

Although the commander of Port-Royal left for France, most Acadians, including the Savoie family, remained in Acadia. They were permitted to retain their land and belongings and were guaranteed religious freedom.[10] Dunn describes life in Acadia during the 16 years of nominal British rule:

"During the years of British rule, most of the Port-Royal population moved upriver away from the town. Using the agricultural practices initiated under D'Aulnay, the Acadians dyked and cultivated extensive salt marshes along the river and raised livestock. Through necessity, residents had reached an accommodation with New England traders who had become their sole source for the goods that they could not produce themselves... New England traders exchanged their goods for Acadian produce and furs... There were seventy to eighty families in the Port Royal area in 1665."

By 1671 the British had ceded Acadia to France and French settlement resumed.[11] In the Port-Royal census of that year, François, 50 years of age, was listed as a plowman. His wife Catherine was 38. There were 9 children between the ages of 2 and 18 in the household.[1] The family homestead had 6 arpents[12] under cultivation and they had 4 cattle. It is not clear where the farm was located. By 1707, their son Germain had a farm upriver at the Belisle Marshes, east of the fort on the north bank of the Dauphin (Annapolis River).

The time and location of François’ death are not known.

“Most of François and Catherine's descendants remained at Port-Royal/Annapolis Royal, but they settled also at Minas, Chepoudy, and in the French Maritimes. At least 14 of their descendants emigrated to Louisiana from Halifax in 1765. More of them could be found in greater Acadia, the French Antilles, France, and especially in Canada after Le Grand Dérangement. ”[13]

Only one son, Germain, had sons of his own and spread the name Savoie in Acadie.

DNA Research

According to Family Tree DNA's French Heritage DNA project, two descendants have taken a yDNA test with resulting haplogroup being R-M269 (the most common European group) and one with R-Z367. These can be found in the YDNA portion of the site, on page 3. the Acadian yDNA project from Family Tree DNA shows the family to be R1B with both entries R-M269.[14]


c1621 birth, in France
1632 Treaty Saint-Germain-en-Laye cedes Acadia to France; Razilly brings ~300 elite men[15]
1636 Arrival of the first French families to settle permanently[3]
before 1651 arrival in Acadia
c1651 marriage to Catherine Lejeune, in Acadia
c1652 birth, daughter Françoise
1654 British capture Port-Royal; French settlement ceases[16]
c1654 birth, son Germain
c1657 birth, daughter Marie
c1658 birth, daughter Jeanne
c1659 birth, daughter Catherine
c1663 birth, son François
c1665 birth, son Barnabé
c1667 birth, daughter Andrée
1667-70 Treaty of Breda cedes Acadia to the French; settlement resumes[17]
c1670 birth, daughter Marie France
1671 residence, Port-Royal
c1??? death


"Né en France vers 1621, François Savoie, est arrivé en Acadie vers 1643, et a épousé Catherine Lejeune vers 1651. Neuf enfants sont issus de leur mariage."[7]


  1. 1.0 1.1 (He was 50 years old at the time of the 1671 census.) Tim Hebert; Transcription of the 1671 Acadian Census, at Port-Royal, Acadie. 1671 Census Transcribed. The original census can be found at Census microfilm C-2572 of the National Archives of Canada “Acadie Recensements 1671 – 1752” Images 3-14.
    Francois SAVOYE, 50, wife, Catherine LeJEUNE 38; children: Francoise 18, Germain 17, Marie 14, Jeanne 13, Catherine 9, Françoise 8, Barabe 6, Andree 4, Marie 2; cattle 4, 6 arpents. Note: there is an error in this English translation; baby Marie is 11/2 years in the French Census (See image to the right).
  2. 2.0 2.1 White, Stephen A., Patrice Gallant, and Hector-J Hébert. Dictionnaire Généalogique Des Familles Acadiennes. Moncton, N.-B.: Centre D'études Acadiennes, Université De Moncton, 1999, Print. p. 1456-1457.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Massignon, Geneviève. "Les parlers français d'Acadie, enquête linguistique", Librairie Klincksieck, Paris, 1962, 2 tomes. p32 (first French families in Acadia; p36. Savoie is found in the Seigneury of d'Aulnay in France; p49 Savoie family
  4. Leclerc, Jacques, L'aménagement linguistique dans le monde, accessed at Les origines françaises des Acadiens
  5. Karen Theriot Reader François Savoie citing Bona Arsenault, HISTOIRE ET GENEALOGIE DES ACADIENS; 1625-1810; Ottawa, Editions Lemeac, 1978, 6 vols.; p. 794 (Port Royal);
    "Doubtlessly" originally from Martaizé, department of Vienne, France (cites Massignon, vol. 1, p. 49), Francois arrived in Acadia around 1643, and married around 1652 to Catherine LEJEUNE (no parents listed); they had nine children.
  6. Raymonde Blanchard. "Complexe Savoie: un court historique des Savoie de Néguac." Les Cahiers de la Société historique acadienne, décembre 2009 vol. 40 no.4, p. 147-148. accessed on 9 September 2019 at
  7. 7.0 7.1 White, Stephen A. La généalogie des trente-sept familles hôtesses des ""Retrouvailles 94"", Les Cahiers de la Société historique acadienne, vol. 25, nos 2 et 3 (1994). SAVOIE, 37 Families
  8. Their first child was born in 1653. The estimated year of marriage is based on that.
  9. William I. Roberts, 3rd, “SEDGWICK, ROBERT,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed November 20, 2013
  10. 10.0 10.1 Dunn, Brenda. A History of Port Royal / Annapolis Royal 1605-1800. Nimbus Publishing, p 23-24(1654 Capture of Port-Royal); p25-27;29 (the English period 1654-1670).
  11. In collaboration, “MORILLON DU BOURG,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed November 20, 2013
  12. Statistics Canada defines an arpent as 0.845 acres. According to Clark (Clark, Andrew Hill, Acadia: The Geography of Early Nova Scotia to 1760. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1968, p 87): "The arpent was a basic French unit of land measurement, both linear and areal, but its size at the time is uncertain. In length, 200 feet may be a rough equivalent for an arpent in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries; it was later standardized to 192 feet. An areal arpent may have been something less than an acre (the usual equivalent was .845 acres) although it has been given the equivalent of as much as an acre and a half in some twentieth century definitions." Note: An arpent in an old French dictionary from early 1900s is described as between 30 and 51 ares (1 are = 100 square metres), depending on the country.
  13. Steven A. Cormier. "Acadians Who Found Refuge in Louisiana, February 1764-early 1800s" , Acadians in Gray. Book 3. Copyright (c) 2007-13 accessed on 9 September 2019 at
  14. Estes, Roberta and Marie Rundquist. Acadian and Amerindian Ancestry DNA Project - Y-DNA Classic Chart. Acadian and Amerindian Ancestry DNA Project. Y-DNA Results, Accessed 12/5/2021.
  15. George MacBeath, Biography – RAZILLY, ISAAC DE – Volume I (1000-1700) – Dictionary of Canadian Biography Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed November 20
  16. William I. Roberts, 3rd, “SEDGWICK, ROBERT,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed November 20, 2013
  17. In collaboration, “MORILLON DU BOURG,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed November 20, 2013

See Also :

  • Notes on François Pellerin by GenevaSwiss From public family tree: Hodnett-Price-Gauthier-Normand and more Owner: GenevaSwis
  • Griffith-Fogerty Family Tree by Rob Griffith ( Abbreviation: Griffith-Fogerty FT
  • For more information concerning the disputed royal lineage of François Savoie:
Mark Forest Family Tree
Larry Compagna RootsWeb Page

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Comments: 26

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Mary Despres, you posted a video on YouTube with clips copied from the movie "The King" as a hypotheses for a fantastical theory that Francois Savoie is the son of an Italian prince? There is no hypothesis. It is fiction as has been demonstrated so many times by so many Acadian genealogical researchers. Furthermore, we know Francois Savoie's DNA haplogroup is R1b. We also know the Savoia royal family is E3b. I think those making desperate attempts to prove an Acadian ploughman is really an Italian prince, should pour their energies into more positive endeavors.
posted by Raymond Lafleur
The Lost Duke of Savoy - A geneological hypothesis on the origins of Francois Joseph Savoie

posted by Mary Despres
Why is there a Blason des Savoie on the profile? There is no indication in the upload that permission was gotten to reproduce it.

posted by Danielle Liard
According to online article dated April 17, 2016 by Denis Savard at the link
  • Il y a longtemps on a proposé que François Savoie puisse être originaire de Martaizé, mais cette hypothèse n’a toujours pas été démontrée. Cela demeure une supposition. En fait, nous ignorons toujours le lieu d’origine de la famille Savoie.
posted by [Living Lambert]
Thank you for bringing this to our attention. This hypothesis is already mentioned in the biography. That is why Martaizé appeared in the the birth location field which was marked as uncertain. In order to avoid confusion, Martaizé has been removed as place of birth until documented evidence is found.
posted by Gisèle Cormier
Correct. I believe the original source for this was linguist Genevieve Massignon in Les Parlers Français D'Acadie. In it, she hypothesizes that many of the Acadians, including Francois Savoie, came from south of Loudun, recruited by Aulnay. She says Aulnay's seigneurie was in the area of Martaize. And she is right. But, someone then extrapolated that to be "Francois Savoie was born in Martaize". A search of the parish register in Martaize shows no Savoie's. However, a search of nearby parishes, including Loudun itself shows about 30 entries for a "Savoie" between 1600 and 1650. However, no "Francois Savoie". The fact that "Martaize" was propagated all over the internet as Francois Savoie's birthplace fueled the "Tommaso di Savoia" is his father fantasy. Because, if there are no Savoie's in Martaize, then Francois Savoie MUST BE the sone of Tommaso di Savoia.
posted by Raymond Lafleur
There appears to be no concensus yet on the rules of evidence that should be applied to establish that Francois Savoie is indeed the son of Tomasso. So far, we have these:

1. Direct Evidence: a. The deathbed confession of Francois himself.

2. Circumstantial Evidence: a. The surname of Francois; b. The timeline of his life; c. The historical context of his migration to the New World; d. The accuracy of other similar oral ancestry claims; d. The autosomal DNA test results on three (3) of his direct descendants (see discussion at Geni).

This is not a criminal case. We do not have to prove anything beyond reasonable doubt.

Currently, however, there appears to be enough preponderance of evidence to conclude that, more likely than not, Francois Savoie is indeed the son of Tomasso.

posted by Bill Debuque
1. There is no direct evidence of a deathbed confession of Francois Savoie. Some say it exists via oral tradition through several descendants across a broad range of geography - Acadia to Maine to Louisiana. However, one person seems to be the source of this claim. For it to be even considered, a testimonials would need to be made and documented by those descendants directly. That has not been done. Even then, it would be a stretch to call this compendium of testimonials "direct evidence".

2. The surname of Francois is not circumstantial evidence. Savoie is not a rare or uncommon surname in western France. Of the parish registers indexed and online thus far, there are over 75 individual baptismal, marriage and death records of a "Savoie" between 1600 and 1650 in France, most in the western regions, specifically Maine-et-Loire and adjacent departments; precisely where researchers speculate is the region where Francois Savoie originated and where the Seigneur D'Aulnay recruited from. 3. Autosomnal DNA is useless 13/14 generations back. It works up to about 8 generations. YDNA needs to be performed and has been performed. Francois Savoie is not a match for Tommaso Savoy. 4. It is indeed not a criminal case, it is also not a place of fantasy and wishful thinking. Several serious Acadian genealogists have looked at this - Stephen White, Lucy LeBlanc Consentino, Denis Beauregard, and many others. They all say that any relationship between Francois Savoie and Tommaso Savoy is pure fiction. 5. There is no preponderance of any evidence to conclude Francois Savoie is the son of Tomasso Savoy. None.

posted by Raymond Lafleur
Savoy-Savoie-9 and Savoie-9 appear to represent the same person because: same date, spouse, child.

Savoie-9 is project protected so it must not be modified other than the merge.

posted by Richard Van Wasshnova
Francois has a father who is a myth?
posted by Richard Van Wasshnova
Savoie-1146 and Savoie-9 appear to represent the same person because: Same person
posted by Susan (Savoy) Chevarie
Savoye-17 and Savoie-9 appear to represent the same person because: same person
posted by G (Bard) B
Savoye-9 and Savoye-17 do not represent the same person because: wrong savoye
posted by G (Bard) B
I have removed Tommasco Francesco Savoia as father and created project protected unknown profiles as placeholders to help prevent incorrect parents from reappearing due to merges.
posted by Roland Arsenault
The parental link seems to have returned.
posted by Donna (Friebel) Storz
Savoie-807 and Savoie-9 are not ready to be merged because: Death year varies considerably, and to a lesser extent the feminine form of Francoise used in 807 (which may be just the non-standardized spelling of the period.)
posted by Vincent Courtney
Savoie-807 and Savoie-9 appear to represent the same person because: Same birth date and place, slight difference in date of death, but obviously intended to be the same person.
posted by John Atkinson

Rejected matches › Francois Paul Savoie (abt.1774-)