Eugene Martineau, Mayor of Ottawa
First Francophone Mayor
January 21, 2006:
I wonder if you have run across any information about Eugene Martineau (1837-1880),
Ottawa's 1st Francophone Mayor. I encountered his name while searching for my
Martineau relatives ( through my ggm Harriet Leblanc whose sister married a Martineau).
He seems to have been a very interesting character. He apparently was born in
Saint-Nicolas, Lower Canada in 1837 (not verified; the 1871 Census index would
make it 1840) and migrated to Ottawa/Bytown before 1860. He married before 1863 ,
his wife Julia was born in 1837 in Ontario and the 1901 census indicates "urban"
so I would guess in Bytown. They had at least 4 children. There is a good picture
at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Eug%C3%A8neMartineau23.jpg and apparently
in the National Archives collection.
The 1863 Directory shows him as a Dry goods merchant on Sussex near Murray and
as a City Councillor; no ward is indicated but he was serving on 2 standing
committees Bylaws and Printing. The next year's directory listing shows him as
Tailor and Clothier dealing in boots, shoes, hats etc. and adds that his house
was on Murray St and that he was recording secretary for the Societe St Jean Baptiste
By 1867 his business had grown to include ready made clothing and he had taken
over premises at 65-67 Sussex at the corner of Clarence . This building had
previously been used by LBJ Lazure also a dry goods merchant. This was later
renumbered to be 465 Sussex; the building was restored/renovated by the NCC in
the 1990s. There is an interesting article on this restoration project at
The directory entry also shows that he was the councillor for By Ward. The next
year he represented Ottawa Ward and his house is shown to be on the south side
of Murray between Sussex and Dalhousie.
1870 marks the first appereance of my relative, one Charles Ustazede Martineau
then 24, a clerk working at E Maritineau's and boarding on Murray. A brother,
In 1871, Eugene is Alderman for Ottawa Ward, a member of the Council of the
Ottawa Board of Trade.
In !872, he was elected Mayor of Ottawa, was also 2nd VP of the Institute
Canadien Francais d'Outauois,and 1st VP of the Soc.St Jean Baptiste. This year
also marks the construction of the Martineau Hotel at 55 Murray. This heritage
building was restored after a fire in 1978 and has been included in the Doors Open
Ottawa program. There is a good picture at http://ottawa.ca/city_services/culture/doorsopen/buildings/central_the_carriageway_en.html
and an interesting article from the Citizen at http://www.vaaltd.ca/pressdetail12.php
Fairly slanderous unless true. 1873 marks the highwater mark of his career, Mayor and
alderman for Ottawa ward. In 1874 he is no longer on City council and seems to have
withdrawn from public life.
By 1875, he has moved house to 28 Sussex; that was on the west side between St Patrick
and Bolton or in todays terms somewhere near where the Art Gallery, Mint and old
War Museum are. It is this year that the numbers on Sussex were changed and
65 became 465.
1875 marks the end of the records I have found. His widow appears at 59 Bolton
through the 1901 census. Sometime between1875 and 1881 a street in Lowertown is
named for him, formerly Carriere it became Shamrock in 1875 and Martineau by 1881,
it was apparently obliterated when St Patrick was rerouted.
Hope you find some of this interesting
... Al Craig
April 12, 2006:
Just a note to let you know that I have heard back from Marie Martineau Glasby who
provided the following info.
"What I first want to tell you is there is a hard bound book at the library in
Ottawa. The name is Genealogie Famille Martineau. it is written by a F. H. Filteau.
There is a copy there, even though it is out of print. It was published in 1896
by A. Bureau & Freres, Imprimeurs. It gives the Martineau family genealogy and other
very useful information....
The mayor was married twice, my family is of this marriage to Oive Groulx . There
were 3 children from this marrage. My Grandfather is Edouard-Eugene born in 1863 and
married Marie Ward in 1888. The second wife was Julie-Christine Bourgeous. There were,
I believe, 5 children from this marriage. "
... Al Craig
E-mail Al Craig and Al Lewis
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