Joseph Pilon.

(1837-1915)
Joseph was the son of Antoine Pilon 1 and Angelique Lemai. He was born at St. Norbert in 1837. He married Angelique Normand at St. Norbert January 12, 1858. They moved to St. Laurent, Saskatchewan in 1882.

Joseph and Angelique (Courtesy of Robert Pilon). Joseph was a member of Captain William Boyer’s company, one of the 19 dizaines led by Gabriel Dumont during the 1885 Metis Resistance. Joseph’s name appears as #71 in Philippe Garnot’s list of Resistance participants. Joseph was active at the battle for Tourond’s Coulee but left before the Metis were totally pinned down. Edouard Dumont’s account mentions Pilon: Around ten or eleven o’clock, Edouard Dumont sets out again with Pierriche Parenteau, Moise Parenteau, and old Jean-Baptiste Boucher – this time, just the four went, as Boniface stayed behind on this occasion. At Lenoir Parenteau’s they begin to meet some of the Indians who have left the battle. They do not want to return to Fish Creek with Edouard. At Ignace Poitras’, they meet old Pilon and three others who do not want to go back either.2 Father Cloutier’s journal notes that at the battle for Batoche: “Gilbert Breland, William Boyer, Joseph Pilon, Joseph Sauvé, et d'autres (une 30ne environ) sont dans les trous distants de 5 à 6 pieds les uns des autres, le long de la belle prairie, ils n'ont pas grouillé de la journée.” Joseph was arrested on May 12, 1885, and on August 14, 1885 at Regina was given a conditional discharge for his Resistance participation. He died March 25, 1915 at Batoche. He is buried at St. Antoine de Padoue Cemetery, Batoche. In his testimony of August 13, 1885 at the Regina trial Father Alexis Andre says:

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Antoine Pilon held HBC lot 815 at Red River. SHM, pp. 27-29.

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Joseph Pilon is a farmer, and has a family of ten children and is about fifty years of age. He lived a half a mile from Batoche; he was always an industrious and hard working man. When the trouble broke out this man was ordered by Riel to come into camp or he would force him to come, as he had protested against Riel’s movements, and had refused to attend any of his meetings, and never contributed one cent towards Riel’s support last winter. Pilon, when he was threatened by Riel, came to the priests, and cried when telling what was wanted of him. Riel by force and threats against his life compelled him to serve his purpose. Poor man, he deserves pity rather than punishment. (CSP, 1886, Vol. 13, p. 386) The three Pilon boys who fought in the 1885 Resistance: Pilon, Joseph Jr. (1855-1941) Joseph was the son of Joseph Pilon Sr. and Angelique Normand. He was the oldest of their sons participating in the Resistance. Later, on February 6, 1893, he married Julienne Guillemine Branconnier at Batoche. His name appears as #72 in Philippe Garnot’s list of Resistance participants. Pilon, Raymond Barthélémi. (1861-1943) Barthélémi was born at St. Norbert on September 30, 1861. He was the son of Joseph Pilon and Angelique Normand. On January 17, 1882, at St. Boniface he married Christine Dumas, the daughter of Michel Dumas and Henriette Landry. They then moved to Batoche where they had Lots 54 and 65 (T43-1-3) in the St. Laurent settlement. Barthélémi was a member of Captain Calixte Lafontaine’s company, one of the 19 dizaines led by Gabriel Dumont during the 1885 Metis Resistance. His name appears as #73 in Philippe Garnot’s list of Resistance participants. Father Cloutier’s journal notes the destruction of his home: Le Samedi matin, i.e. le 9 mai, avant la bataille, en s'en venant ils (les soldats) tirent du canon sur les maisons, et brûlent les maisons de Flamand, Patrice Gervais, Norbert Delorme, Salomon Venne, Barthélémi Pilon, Jean Caron, 2 maisons et l'étable et la maison de Ludger Gareau - et l'étable est assez brûlé pour le mettre hors de service. Antoine Ferguson reports: Il rencontre le général chez James Short - L' ordre vient de nous garder - 3 chargent leurs fusils: Il dit: S'il avait voulu s'échapper, il avait beau - C'est ce qu'il dit au Capitaine par l'interprète - Et le Capitaine lui frappa sur l'épaule et dit: ne crains rien, il n'y a pas de danger - Ils nous donnent à dîner - On se trouvait 6: Léon Ferguson, Daniel Parenteau, Barthélémi Pilon (qui n'avait pas pris les armes) Guillaume Laplante, et Charles Tourond, mort après la guerre de mal de poitrine, et Antoine Ferguson – Avec le général on voit le Père Végreville - Et le général regarde les noms dans son livre, et en renvoie 5. Il garde Daniel Parenteau et le descend à Régina. Pilon, Alexandre. (b. 1864) 2

Alexandre was the son of Joseph Pilon Sr. and Angelique Normand. He was born at St. Norbert in 1864. Alexandre was the youngest of Joseph Pilon’s sons participating in the Resistance. His name appears as #74 in Philippe Garnot’s list of Resistance participants.

Edited and Compiled by Lawrence Barkwell Coordinator of Metis Heritage and History Research Louis Riel Institute

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