William Herzkey Tombow
William Herzkey Tombow
My Family Tree, by Patrick Tombeau, PhD White Feather
White Feather

Marie ("White Feather") Gouin

Female 1790 - 1852  (62 years)


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  • Name Marie ("White Feather") Gouin 
    Born 8 Feb 1790  Detroit, MI Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Female 
    Died 9 Sep 1852  Erie, MI Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I00028  Tombeau Family Tree
    Last Modified 24 Feb 2007 

    Father Charles Gouin,   b. 2 Feb 1755, Detroit, MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Aft 1830, Monroe Co., MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age > 76 years) 
    Mother Little Snipe 
    Family ID F0042  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Francois LaVoy, II,   b. 30 Oct 1776, St-Philippe-de-la-Prairie Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Sep 1852, Erie, MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 75 years) 
    Married 5 Jul 1808  Detroit, MI (St. Anne Church) Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Charles LaVoy, Sr.,   b. 10 Aug 1809, Detroit, Mi Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 4 Sep 1858, Erie Twp, MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 49 years)
    +2. Mary ("Sophia") LaVoy,   b. 31 Aug 1811, Detroit, MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Bef 1852, Erie, MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age < 40 years)
     3. Infant LaVoy,   b. 4 Nov 1813,   d. 1813
    +4. Lambert LaVoy, I,   b. 1 Mar 1815, Detroit, MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Abt 1855, Bedford Twp., MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 39 years)
    +5. Francis LaVoy, III,   b. 7 Dec 1817, Detroit, MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 25 Jul 1869, Erie, MI (St. Joseph Cemetery, large stone Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 51 years)
    +6. David LaVoy,   b. 7 Jul 1821, Maumee River, OH Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 12 Sep 1852, Erie Township, MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 31 years)
    +7. Fabian LaVoy,   b. 6 Apr 1823, Detroit, MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 9 Nov 1909, Erie, MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 86 years)
    +8. Paul LaVoy,   b. 28 Feb 1825, Erie Twp., MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 7 Aug 1871, Erie, MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 46 years)
     9. Esther LaVoy,   b. 1832,   d. Abt 1851  (Age 19 years)
    Family ID F0041  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Photos
    Marie Gouin (White Feather) wife of Francois LaVoy.
    Marie Gouin (White Feather) wife of Francois LaVoy.
    Color Picture of the White Feather Papoose
    Color Picture of the White Feather Papoose

    Documents
    Marie Gouin LaVoy Papoose Newspaper Article
    Marie Gouin LaVoy Papoose Newspaper Article
    Children Francois LaVoy, II and Mary Gouin Article
    Children Francois LaVoy, II and Mary Gouin Article
    Deed from Marie Gouin LaVoy to David LaVoy
    Deed from Marie Gouin LaVoy to David LaVoy
    Page One
    Deed from Mary Gouin LaVoy to David LaVoy
    Deed from Mary Gouin LaVoy to David LaVoy
    Page Two
    Deed from Mary Gouin LaVoy to David LaVoy
    Deed from Mary Gouin LaVoy to David LaVoy
    Continuation of Page Two
    Marie Gouin: Land Purchase in Monroe Co, MI.
    Marie Gouin: Land Purchase in Monroe Co, MI.
    Photo with corrections.
    Photo with corrections.
    The above text is in error on several points. Mary was not a full blooded Indian, had children prior to 1840, did not have 11 children, nor was Mrs. LaPrad her daughter.

    Histories
    Potawatomi Booklet
    Potawatomi Booklet
    Historical narratives and drawings about the Potawatomi tribe
    History of the Gouin-LaVoy Detroit Property:
    History of the Gouin-LaVoy Detroit Property:
    Charles Gouin, the father-in-law of Francois Lavoy deeds some property to him. It is about 207.03 acres on the Detroit River.

  • Notes 
    • March 16, 1997

      Jim Ryland
      Curator, Historical Collection
      Monroe County Historical Museum
      126 South Monroe Street
      Monroe, MI 48161

      Dear Mr. Ryland:

      I have meant to type this letter for over a year concerning your exhibit of the LaVoy Family papoose-carrier and artifacts donated by Miss Mildred LaPrad in about 1954. There are some minor errors in the exhibit's description and more information I would like to share with you and your visitors, including a picture of "Mrs. Mary LaVoy".

      I am providing the following narrative with footnoted documentation:

      The "Mrs. Mary LaVoy" who made the papoose carrier can be further identified as the matriarch of the Monroe County LaVoy Family. She is the former Marie Gouin, daughter of Charles Gouin, an early French-Canadian settler in Detroit of prominent family, and a "sauvagesse", as early parish records of Ste. Anne de D‚troit indicate. This was an illegitimate union as Charles Gouin was married at the time to Suzanne Boyer (1).

      Marie/Mary Gouin was thus only a half-blooded Indian, not full-blooded. She was of the Potawatomi Tribe of Indians whose village on Delery's map of Detroit was located west of Fort Ponchartrain de Detroit overlooking the Detroit River. Her Indian name was "White Feather" until she was baptized at the age of 11 at Ste. Anne de Detroit. Her mother's name was "Little Snipe".(2)

      Mary/Marie was born February 8, 1790 at Detroit, and married July 5, 1808, at Ste. Anne de Detroit, Francois LaVoy, newly arrived in Detroit from St-Philippe-de-la-Prairie, near Montr‚al, Canada. (3)

      Prior to their marriage Francois LaVoy, patriarch of the Monroe County LaVoy Family, was a trapper in what is now the Temperance area, but which at that time was a large woods. He traded his furs in Canada and on trips back and forth in Detroit met White Feather/Marie Gouin. When they were married, they were forced out of the tribe, as Marie/Mary's Potawatomi relatives considered the marriage to a white man a disgrace to the tribe. (4)

      Somewhere between 1810-1820 the couple appears to have gradually moved into Monroe County as a permanent settlement, Oral tradition states that they could not successfully farm their land in Detroit because it was swampy. Marie's father had actually sold them land in the Grand Marais, or "great swamp" at what is now Windmill Point in Grosse Pointe.(5)

      Fran‡ois and Mary LaVoy parented nine known children from 1809 to 1832, some in Detroit and others in Monroe County. These were: Charles, Mary who married Joseph DuVall, an unnamed ungendered still born, Lambert, Fran‡cois, Jr., David, Fabian, Paul, and Esther. From these children spring the LaVoy families and some DuVall families of Monroe County. They lived in a cabin at Dean and Dixie, now in Temperance, but formerly called Dean's Corners, where the cabin stood as late as 1909. (6)

      Mary Gouin LaVoy died September 9, 1852, age 62, and her husband Fran‡ois followed her four days later on September 13, 1852. (7)

      FOOTNOTES:

      (1) Ste. Anne de D‚troit parish records as published in Denissen's French-Canadian Families of the Detroit River Region.

      (2) Baptism found in Denissen, op cit., and family oral tradition passed on through Mary/Marie's great-great-granddaughter, Esther LaVoy Templin of 250 W. Erie Rd, Temperance, MI.

      (3) Dennisen, op. cit.

      (4) Family oral tradition passed on by Mary/Marie's great-great-granddaughter, Mary Luceilia Reau Stark (whose mother was Lucy LaVoy), who resides in Luther House, Temperance, MI.

      (5) Monroe County and Detroit Federal Censuses; 1909 obituary of Fabian ("Tobias") LaVoy, and City of Detroit Deeds; oral tradition passed on by Esther LaVoy Templin, as above.

      (6) Dennisen, op. cit.; 1909 obituary of Fabian ("Tobias") LaVoy in Monroe County Historical Collection; 1850 Federal Census for Esther; St. Joseph's Baptism Records, Erie, MI, for Paul.

      (7) Monroe County Probate Records of their estate.

      The card with the papoose-carrier exhibit states the carrier was first used around 1840 to "carry her (Mary's) 11 children around. Mary/Marie's children were born from 1809-1832, so if that was its original purpose, the carrier dates from that period. Mrs. Mildred LaPrad was a great-great-granddaughter of White Feather, and her grandmother, Mary LaPrad was a granddaughter, not a daughter of White Feather (Marie/Mary Gouin LaVoy). There are only nine recorded children, but Miss LaPrad may well have known of a family oral tradition of two more children not baptized at Ste. Anne de Detroit or St. Joseph's, Erie.

      I am sure this is more than is necessary for the exhibit, but as this account records oral traditions of elderly people in Monroe County, it is one way of preserving these traditions.

      Thank you for your time in reading this letter and considering any changes to the information in the exhibit. I might add that books on the Potawatomi Indian crafts indicate the designs and materials used for the papoose-carrier are classically Potawatomi.

      The picture, of which I am sending you a laser print, of White Feather/ Marie Gouin, has passed down by Marie's daughter, Mary LaVoy Duvall, to a great-great-great-granddaughter, Wendy DuVall-Angelocci of Novi, MI.


      Sincerely yours,


      Patrick LaVoy Tombeau (313) 421-7323