Valeda Couture: a mother’s view on immigration of her children

A story by Biddeford Cultural & Heritage Center "Voices of Biddeford" project from early 1900s to 1988

1988 Interview with Valeda Couture at her farm in Quebec part 1 and part 2

Although not a Biddeford resident, Valéda Gosselin Couture made a contribution to the community when 7 of her 12 children moved here from their farm in Québec. Born in 1901, Valéda Couture went on to have 36 grandchildren, 37 great grandchildren and one great grandchild before she passed away at the age of 99. Through the years, the original family farm continued to be the gathering place for family members on both sides of the border.

In her interview, Valeda talked about the differences in customs and lifestyles from the early 1900s through the 1980s; her reaction when her children gradually immigrated to the US; and the challenges of living far away at critical times.

This interview is part of a series which provides the perspectives across three generations involved in immigration from Québec to Biddeford. To view the series, check out her daughters’ (Aurore Morin and Huguette Paquette) and granddaughter’s (Nicole Morin- Scribner) interviews.

The interview, in French, was recorded on June 29, 2018. View a transcript (in English) of this interview, more pictures, and additional information.

For more stories from the "Voices for Biddeford" project, visit Voices of Biddeford.

Valeda (age 18) and Georges Couture (age 23) wedding picture May 4,1920

Family "growth chart" tradition. 9-year-old grandson, James Boissonneault with Memere Couture at 93.

Couture family collage. Georges and Valeda's 12 children, 7 of whom left Quebec for Maine.

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