Maine genealogy researcher Russell “Bud” Dorr quickly found information about a reader’s recent query. Dorr, 69, is a genealogy enthusiast, Maine native and resident of Casco. Referencing the Drouin files, he found the place where the Maine World War II fighter pilot Herman E. King’s family originated from in Quebec.

This information was requested by King’s widow who is finishing a family genealogy for her late husband’s children. She was looking for help with the ancestry of her husband’s first generation ancestor named Ludger Sirois.

Although she found records about the family in the Old Town area where Sirris worked, King had difficulty locating where the first ancestor originated from in Quebec. King’s research was complicated by the name’s spelling from Sirrirs to Sirois and eventually to King. In French, the name’s origin is “Six-rois” means “six kings.”

Dorr is an experienced genealogical researcher. He located the Sept. 12, 1887, marriage in his record in his book of marriages between Ludger Sirois to Marie-Desanges Pelletier at St. Joseph’s Church in Old Town. He found the marriage records online in the Drouin files.

From this marriage record, Dorr traced the first Maine ancestor of King’s husband to St. Roch-des-Aulnaie in L’Islet County in the Province of Quebec. Sirris was the son of Germain Sirois and Adeline Morin who were married Nov. 24, 1846, at St. Roch-des-Aulnaie the L’Islet County, Quebec.

Dorr’s interest in genealogy began as a teenager while listening to his grandparents recollect about their past. He has memories of sitting at his kitchen table with a pad and pencil and writing the stories his grandparents told.

“I’ve always been curious about family stories,” he said.

He learned his family is related to Francis and Freelan Stanley, known as the “Steamer twins” who were born in Kingfield.

Fortunately, Dorr kept many of his handwritten family memories.

“I have most of the original documents,” he said.

Much of his genealogical experience was obtained from research he did in Boston at the New England Historic Genealogical Society on Newbury Street.

He creates “pedigree charts” rather quickly for friends and family members. A pedigree chart documents 32 ancestors ending with 16 great-great-grandparents on both sides of a family tree.

One of Dorr’s personal genealogies documents his mother’s French-Quebec-Acadian ancestry. His grandfather’s mother was Marie Sophie Deslauriers. This name was anglicized to Delorey. Five Deslauriers brothers who were shipbuilders from Quebec moved to Tracadie, Nova Scotia, in the 18th century to work as farmers. Tracadie is near Cape Breton Island.

It’s difficult to find source documents about Acadian families. This is because the British destroyed public records while they burned French villages in the turbulent years between 1755-63, when Acadians were expelled from Nova Scotia during le Grand Derangement.

“Burning the Acadians’ villages by the British, separating families and expelling the citizens from their homes is one of history’s devastating holocausts,” said Dorr.

Acadian genealogists often refer to Stephen A. White of the University of Moncton in New Brunswick for expert information. Dorr looks to White when researching genealogies of Acadian families who have roots in the Canadian Maritimes.

King said she is thankful for Dorr’s help to complete her husband’s genealogy.

“I received excellent information”, she said.

Dorr even sent her a copy of the source document he found online from the registry where the Sirris ancestor was born.

Dorr is helping King to expand her genealogy data by checking on the birthplace of other ancestors.

“Researching genealogy is absolutely fascinating,” said King.

 

Juliana L’Heureux can be contacted at:

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