About Elise Marie Albert
Notes for Elise Marie Albert(née Michaud)
Elise Marie Michaud was born October 7, 1914 in Drummond, N.B., the third eldest daughter of Charles and Emma Michaud. There were 10 children in the Michaud family and little is remembered of Elise’
s early years. I do remember my mother telling me that they lived on a farm in Drummond and they later moved to Bell Grove where her father and the older brothers worked for the LeBel family at their
sawmill. My mother started working at the age of 15 years old for the LeBels as a cook. She would start very early in the morning and finish late in the evening, day after day. In the 1920’s there w
ere no fast foods, everything was prepared and made from scratch.
My mother’s married life was not easy either. My father, being a bricklayer, had to go where the construction work was and this left my mother to raise the four children by herself. It must have bee
n very hard for her. When we moved to Plaster Rock, she had to contend with another problem, that of racism. Being the only French-speaking family in the neighborhood brought a substantial amount of a
buse our way. Mother had to bear the most of it herself. However she persevered, raised her family and lived there the rest of her life.
My mother and her mother, my grandmother Michaud, were very close . They would talk on the phone everyday. During this period of time, women did not have the same opportunities as they do now. There w
ere no trips to the south to escape the winter’s cold or to get away from daily routines. I don’t ever remember my parents having a vacation; certainly not a vacation like people take today. Every
body was the same in those times, there was no money for the ordinary people to take vacations. The point being, that families, relatives were much more important than they seem to be today. Relatives
relied on each other for many things, such as , moral support, help with problems of all sorts and entertainment and fun.
The above tells a little bit about events and jobs etc., but says little as to the type of people my parents were. In the following , I will give my thoughts as to what type of people my parents were
I will start with my mother. My mother was a shy person when she found herself around strangers, however, around her family and people she knew she was quite different. She loved to play tricks and j
okes on people and have a good laugh. I must point out that her tricks and jokes were never harmful to others, just funny. She was a very hard worker and continued to be in her later years. She was al
so very devoted to her family. She always made sure that meals were on time, that our cloths were clean and that the house was spotless. You could have safely eaten a meal off the floors. She was also
a good Catholic and I remember many bits of advice she gave me . For example, during my childhood Catholic Church Law did not permit us to eat meat on Fridays. We were supposed to eat fish on Friday
s, but because we were not too well off we did not always have fish to eat. One particular Friday mother served us meat with our meal, so I pointed out that we were not supposed to eat meat on Friday.
She replied to me that a person would not be eternally dammed because of the food that they ate, but rather by the things that one said about others. How true that is. In summary, my mother was a goo
d, loving and gentlewoman who loved life in spite of all the hardships she endured.
My father was also a very hard working man who did not have an easy life. He had to quite school in grade 3 because there was no school for him to attend and started working when he was just 13 years
old. The type of work he did was all hard physical, back breaking work. As a bricklayer his fingers were always split and bleeding from the lime in the mortar. As mentionned earlier, he was always awa
y from home because he had to go where the construction work was. He spent a good part of his life living out of a suitcase in some boarding house or other. The point being, is that he did what he had
to do to support his family. We may not have been well off, but we always had food to eat, cloths to wear and a home to live in. My father was also a quiet sort of person although he loved to hear or
tell a good story. He had very little formal education, but was quite well read and could intelligently discuss many different subjects. He was a whiz at calculating material and cost of a constructi
on job. My father was a kind, gentle, loving man who was devoted to his family and his Catholic religion, and he also loved life in spite of all the hardships he had to endure.
David Albert, eldest son of John and Elise, has written these notes.