Mathilda (Tille) Vadnais, Adlore Dupre and family 

Mathilda “Tille,” my great-grandaunt, was the last of 8 children born to my 2nd great-grandparents Francois and Tharsile Vadnais (I often see her name as Mathilda Camille, but I’ve not found any documents containing Camille).  Tharsile, then 37 years old, gave birth to Mathilda on April 20, 1870 at their home in Centerville, Anoka County, Minnesota; Francois was 43 years old.  She was welcomed by her 11 year old sister Mary Theresa, her 6 year old brother William (my great-grandfather) and her 4 year old sister Cordelia.  Mathilda’s other 4 siblings had all passed away before her parents emigrated from Canada.

Centerville Return of Births – Matille Vadner  [Mathilda Vadnais] born April 20, 18701

Mathilda was baptized on May 2, 1870 at St. Genevieve Church in Centerville.2

Church of St. Genevieve
Back row: William, Cordelia, Mary Theresa, front row: Francois, Mathilda and Tharsile
This picture was taken in 1873 to commemorate Francois’ and Tharsile’s 25th wedding anniversary. Francois would have been about 47 years old, Tharsile about 40 years old, William about 10 years old, Cordelia about 8 years old and Mary Theresa about 15 years old.

 Mathilda is shown as residing with her parents in the 1875 Minnesota census3 and the 1880 U. S. census.4  However, the 1885 Minnesota census shows 15 year old Mathilda living in White Bear Lake with her sister Mary Theresa, Mary’s husband John Extrand, their 5 children and 2 other boarders.5  I suspect that Mathilda was there to help her sister with her children (ages 0 to 9 years old) and all of the everyday household chores.

1885 Minnesota Census showing Matilda Vadnia [Mathilda Vadnais]

Mathilda’s future husband Joseph Dolar (Adlore or Adelard) Dupre was born to Joseph and Angele (Bibeau) Dupre in Sainte-Victoire, Richelieu, Quebec, Canada on June 7, 1865 and baptized there on June 11, 1865.6  Adlore is enumerated in the 1871 and 1881 Canada census as living with his family in Sainte-Victoire.7,8  On the 1910 U. S. census his immigration year is given as 1885, so somewhere between the 1881 Canada census and his marriage in 1887 Adlore immigrated to Minnesota.9

Joseph Dolar Dupre baptism record from Sainte-Victoire, June 11, 1865

B21 (21st baptism in 1865 at Sainte-Victoire)
Joseph Dolar Dupre

On the eleventh of June, one thousand eight hundred and sixty-five, we, the undersigned parish priest, baptized Joseph Dolar, born on the seventh day of the legitimate marriage of Joseph Dupre, farmer, and Angele Bibeau of this parish. Godfather Olivier Bibeau godmother Marie — who did not know how to sign.
                                                            (Signature of priest)
End of translation.

The earliest U. S. record I have for Adlore is his and Mathilda’s marriage license and certificate; he was 22 years old and she was 17 years old.  The license was issued by the District Court for the County of Anoka on June 7, 1887 and they were married on June 14, 1887 by Father Joseph Goiffon of St. Genevieve Church in Centerville.  According to the marriage license, it was Father Goiffon who vouched that there were no legal impediments regarding the potential marriage.  The witnesses at their marriage were Cyrile Bernier and Lucie Dupre.10

Minnesota Marriage License and Certificate for Adelard Dupre and Mathilda Vadnais

Adlore and Mathilda are enumerated in the 1895 Minnesota census as living in the village of White Bear.  Adlore’s employment is as a carpenter, but I also know that he was employed as a White Bear village police officer; his name appears as the arresting officer in many of the White Bear Village court records between May 1893 and March 1898.  The same census shows that Mathilda has given birth to 3 children: Eva, Stella and Joseph.11

1895 Minnesota census enumerating the Duprey [Dupre] family in White Bear Village

Adlore’s and Mathilda’s first born child, Eva Theraise was born on February 7, 1889 in Centerville, Anoka County, Minnesota.12  At the time of her birth, Mathilda was 18 years old and Adlore was 23 years old.  Their second born, Stella Elisabeth was born on May 31, 1890 at White Bear and their first son, Joseph was born at White Bear on February 14, 1894.13,14

Birth record for Theraise Dupre – February 7, 1889, Centerville
Birth record for Stella Dupray [Dupre] – May, 31, 1890, White Bear
Official corrections to Stella Dupre’s birth certificate
Birth record for Joseph Dupre – February 14, 1894, White Bear

By the 1900 U. S. census Adlore’s occupation is engine wiper.  In was in 1900 that the St. Paul and Duluth Railroad was incorporated into the Northern Pacific Railroad; I’ve not found any railroad records confirming which one employed him.  The census also shows that he and Mathilda own their home on 3rd Street and there is no mortgage.15

1900 U. S. census showing Adlore, Mathilda, Eva T., Stella E. and Joseph Dupre

Shortly after the census was taken, James William, their 4th child, was born on July 21, 1900.16

Birth record for James William Dupre – July 21, 1900, White Bear

The 1905 Minnesota census shows 40 year old Adlore working as a janitor, at Washington School.  Three of the children are in school and Joseph is home with Mathilda.17

Members of the I.O.O.F. (International Order of Odd Fellows), including Adlore, in an early 1900s photograph taken in front of the Getty Building in White Bear.  Adlore Dupre is marked with an X.  The purpose of the organization was to attend to the sick, bury the dead, educate orphans, and provide a home for those members who were aged and indigent.

On March 27, 1910 Adlore’s and Mathilda’s last child, Lawrence George was born.18  His oldest sister Eva was 21 years old, Stella was 19 years old, Joseph was 16 years old and James was 9 years old. 

According to Lawrence’s record of birth, Mathilda had given birth to 6 children, but only 5 were living.  That can only mean one of two things, there’s an error or that sometime previous to Lawrence’s birth, Mathilda had given birth to a child that did not survive.  It is possible that there was no record created of that birth.

Record of birth for Lawrence George Dupre, March 27, 1910

The 1910 U. S. census would be the only one to show the entire family.19  Interestingly it records Mathilda as having given birth to 5 children and 5 surviving.  There’s no way of knowing whether the record of birth is wrong because many records contradict one another.

The next few years would contain highs and lows for the family.  Tragedy struck on January 12, 1911 when 9 ½ month old Lawrence George passed away from pneumonia20 and then just 20 days later on February 1, 1911 the family celebrated the marriage of Stella to Thomas Edward Berrisford.

Minnesota death certificate for Lawrence George Dupre – January 12, 1911
Wedding Announcement for Thomas and Stella21

On July 8, 1911 Mathilda lost her older sister Mary Theresa Extrand (my great-grandaunt) who had been ill for over 3 months.22  A few months later on September 9, 1911, Stella prematurely gave birth to Louis Edward Berrisford; Mathilda’s and Adlore’s first grandchild.23  Sadly, the joy of the birth was short lived as Louis Edward passed away the following day on September 10, 1911.24

Louis Edward Berrisford death certificate, September 10, 1911

Eight months later, on May 4, 1912, Mathilda and Adlore lost their oldest son, Joseph who was only 18 years old.  According to his death certificate he died from inflammation of his heart lining.  The roller-coaster ride had come to an end; the family had experienced some joy, but an awful lot of tragedy.  

The 1920 U. S. census shows 30 year old Eva and 19 year old James living at home.  Eva is a public school teacher and James is still attending school.  Mathilda is at home and Adlore is still working as a janitor at Washington School.  This census shows Adlore’s immigration year as 1884 and that he was naturalized in 1896.26  I don’t have the paperwork showing whether or not he finished the multi-step naturalization process.

Circa 1920 – Mathilda (Vadnais) about 50 years old and Adlore Dupre around 55 years old

The family suffered 2 more losses in 1926.  On March 9, 1926 Stella’s husband, Thomas Berrisford passed away at 36 years old leaving Stella with 3 young children to raise: 11 year old Mary Elizabeth, 9 year old Thomas Adlore and 7 year old Eleanor.27  About 3 months later Mathilda’s husband, Adlore, died on June 13, 1926, in White Bear Lake, at 61 years and 6 days old.28  Adlore was laid to rest at St. Mary of the Lake Cemetery.

Adlore Dupre death record, June 13, 1926

The 1930 U. S. census has Stella and her 3 children living with Mathilda at 312 Murray Avenue in White Bear Lake.  The home is owned by Mathilda and valued at $5,000.  This is the same house where Mathilda’s only brother William, and his wife Jennie (my great-grandparents), raised their family.  Mathilda’s and William’s mother, Tharsile Vadnais had originally purchased the house for $225 in 1883.

1930 U. S. census showing Mathilda, Stella, her children and a boarder29

The census also shows that there is a boarder providing the family with some rental income, with Stella supplementing the income by doing odd jobs as a seamstress. 

The information provided on any one census varies, with this census informing us that they had a radio set.  The 1930 census count determined that 40% of Americans reported having a radio set.   

Mathilda passed away on December 28, 1932 at St. Mary’s Hospital at Riverside and 24th in Minneapolis.  She had been in the hospital in the care of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet for 2 months.

St. Mary’s Hospital, Minneapolis
Minnesota death certificate for Mathilda Dupre30

According to her death certificate, the cause of Mathilda’s death was cancer in her left ovary that had spread elsewhere in her body (metastasis), along with fluid buildup in her abdomen (ascites). 

Mathilda Dupre obituary in the White Bear Press31

Mathilda was laid to rest with her husband at St. Mary of the Lake Cemetery on Saturday, December 31, 1932.

Mathilda Dupre grave marker at St. Mary of the Lake Cemetery32

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