My great-great-great-great-grandmother, Josephine Gladieux, is the root of my proud French ancestry. As a child, she came from Vellescot, a little town in the Doubs (near Besançon) in 1844, with her parents, Jean-Pierre Gladieux and Rosaline Rossat. They settled in the aptly named Besancon (pronounced, à l'américaine, with the accent on the middle syllable instead of the last, as in French), a little farm town outside Ft. Wayne, Indiana. My mother's hobby is genealogy, and she has documented this part of our family's history. When we were living in France in 1997, my parents and I traveled to the town of Vellescot on a winter day and had a look at the cemetery. Researching things on this end, she has discovered that several of the Gladieux are buried in the cemetery by the Church of St. Louis in Besancon (shown at left -- note the Indiana limestone blocks carved to look like rusticated stone). The Gladieux family even paid for one of the windows in that church (shown at right), which bears the names of Jean-Pierre (Josephine's father), Célestin (her brother, born in America), and François (her eldest brother, also born in France). Records even show which pew they sat in at Mass.
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