Bessette Family History & Genealogy

Updated Apr 16, 2015

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Bessette Surname History

A French Canadian pioneer, Jean Bessette was born abt. 1642 in Cahors, France, and died January 05, 1707 in Chambly, Quebec, Canada.  He married Anne Seigneur, daughter of Guillaume Seigneur and Madeleine Sauve/Serre, on July 03, 1668 in Chambly, Quebec, Canada.  She was born March 01, 1649 in St-Maclou, V. Et Archev. Rouen, Normandie, France, and died July 04, 1733 in Chambly, Quebec, Canada.

Many Besset/Bessette's in North America descend from this Jean and Anne.  Very little is known about the French origins of Jean Besset, although through his marriage contract, one single detail has come to us. He was from the town of Cahors, today the head town of the arrondissement of the department lot, in the Midi-Pyrenees, in Guyenne. 

Jean Besset came to New France with the Carignan Regiment in 1665. The first official mention of Jean Besset in Canadian history was in the spring of 1688. On May 20, Msgr de Laval appeared at Fort Chambly to meet the soldiers and to speak to them. He administered the sacrament of confirmation to 66 people, all men, including Jean Besset. 

Jean Besset spent the winter of 1668 and 1669 guarding army property at Fort Saint-Louis. Fort Saint-Louis was used primarily as a warehouse for supplies and munitions.  After the breakup of the Carignan Regiment, Jean Besset took to farming land, and on October 14, 1673: received title to his land, in Chambly, undoubtedly already under cultivation.

On July 29, 1674 Jean bought a concession from Francois Prudhomme, consisting of 80 arpents of land in Sault St-Louis. The land bordered on one side by Pierre Godin dit Chatillon, and on the other side by Jean Roy dit LaPensee, all of it in the district of the island of Montreal. He bought this at the price of 80 silver livres.

Jean Besset was buried at Chambly, in the parish of St-Joseph on January 7, 1707, in the presence of the Recollet missionary Pierre Dublaron.  Anne died 26 years later on July 4, 1733 at the age of 84 years.


i. MARIE BESSETTE, b. Bef. 1669, France; d. May 18, 1714, Laprairie, Quebec, Canada.

ii. JACQUELINE BESSETTE, b. February 15, 1671, Boucherville, Quebec, Canada.

iii. JEAN BESSETTE, b. December 27, 1672, Boucherville, Quebec, Canada; d. May 08, 1751, Pointe-Olivier (St. Mathias), Quebec, Canada.

iv. SIMON BESSETTE, b. January 13, 1676, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

v. MARIE ANNE BESSETTE, b. Bef. 1679, Quebec, Canada; d. August 24, 1741, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

vi. MARIE MARGUERITE BESSETTE, b. Bef. 1681, Quebec, Canada; d. July 08, 1760; m. JACQUES POISSANT DIT LASALINE, Bef. July 20, 1700.

vii. PIERRE BESSETTE, b. July 09, 1682, Contrecoeur, Quebec, Canada; d. November 16, 1687, Sorel, Quebec, Canada.

viii. FRANCOIS BESSETTE, b. July 26, 1685, Contrecoeur, Quebec, Canada; d. June 03, 1764, Chambly, Quebec, Canada.

ix. THERESE CHARLOTTE BESSETTE, b. February 01, 1690, Montreal, Quebec, Canada; d. April 03, 1707, Chambly, Quebec, Canada.


The Bessette family is originally from France and there are many places in France named "Bessette".  One branch of the Bessette family emigrated to Canada and the history of this branch, as well as other information about the family, are contained below.  If you have more (or conflicting) information about the Bessette family, please add it to this page.

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Bessette Country of Origin, Nationality, & Ethnicity

The Bessette family is from France and is first mentionned in Forez, where the family held a family seat in ancient times. The Bessette family is French.

Bessette Meaning & Etymology

Bessette is the name of several places (locations) in France. Bessette can also be the nickname given to someone who lives near a birch grove. In Languedoc, 'birch' is 'Bes' or 'Besse' and diminutives: Besselle, Besset, or Besson. Known variants: BIRCH (English) BERCK (German) KOIVU (Finnish).

Bessette Life Expectancy

According to our database of 1,634 people with the last name Bessette that have a birth and death date listed:

Life Expectancy


Bessette Family Tree

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Famous People named Bessette

Some famous Bessette family members are:

  • Saint Andre Bessette, First Canadian Saint.
  • Caroline Bessette-Kennedy, Wife of John F. Kennedy Jr.

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Most Common Bessette First Names

According to our database of 2,051 people with the last name Bessette that have a first name listed, these are the most common first names:

  • Joseph 2.8%
  • George 2.4%
  • Arthur 1.8%
  • Raymond 1.7%
  • Mary 1.6%
  • Albert 1.6%
  • Marie 1.5%
  • William 1.5%
  • Charles 1.5%
  • Robert 1.3%
  • John 1.3%
  • Leo 1.2%
  • Edward 1.2%
  • Ernest 1.1%
  • Donald 1.1%
  • Henry 1.1%
  • Rose 0.9%
  • Paul 0.8%
  • Irene 0.8%
  • Alfred 0.8%
  • Roland 0.8%
  • Alice 0.7%
  • Wilfred 0.6%
  • Norman 0.6%
  • Armand 0.6%
  • Frank 0.6%
  • Francis 0.6%
  • Eugene 0.6%
  • Helen 0.6%
  • Blanche 0.5%
  • Elizabeth 0.5%
  • Howard 0.5%
  • Roger 0.5%
  • Louis 0.5%
  • Anna 0.5%
  • Jean 0.5%
  • Doris 0.5%
  • Clarence 0.5%
  • Harold 0.5%
  • Eva 0.5%
  • Lillian 0.5%
  • Evelyn 0.5%
  • Richard 0.5%
  • Louise 0.5%
  • Rene 0.4%
  • Laura 0.4%
  • Leon 0.4%
  • Frances 0.4%
  • Lawrence 0.4%
  • Michael 0.4%

Bessette Pronunciation & Spelling Variations

The Bessette surname spelling variations include:


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