In 1881, newlyweds Alexandre Boissy (1857-1940) and Anastasie Lajeunesse (1857-1949), move to Saint-Lambert and make their home on Lorne Avenue. He hails from Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville and is an employee of the Grand Trunk Railway Company. Nine years later he lists his occupation as carter to which he adds grocer in 1895. Successful in his new enterprise, Boissy makes a move to the main street. He installs his growing family—11 children, born between 1883 and 1904—at 412 Victoria Avenue, and his business at 504, corner of Green. For some years Alexandre keeps a horse stable, which allows him to offer home delivery to his customers. He is very much involved in his community and eventually becomes a verger of the Saint Lambert Parish.

Boissy Market, Ave Victoria pres de Green, 1902, coll Guy Boissy.

At the beginning of 1900 the store advertises itself as R.Boissy & Bro Butchers, owned by sons Rosario (1884-1963) and Roméo (1884-1949), and Boissy Market run by the patriarch, all under the same roof. After his marriage to Albertine Duquette in 1908, Rosario leaves Saint-Lambert to open a butcher-grocery store in Montreal-South, now part of Longueuil.

Brother Roméo, having married Albertine Boudrias, establishes his own household in a newly built home at the corner of Victoria and Aberdeen. He runs the original butcher shop. Having doubled in size by 1912, the shop occupies the whole corner of Green and Victoria.

In 1917, a sister, Dorilla Boissy, who has already helped in her father’s shop, takes over half the space with husband Albert Émard. They open their own grocery, to transform it 23 years later into a restaurant. When the Bank of Montreal acquires the Boissy property to open a new branch in Saint-Lambert in 1950, Albert’s Hamburger Shop moves to 594 Victoria. A big fire destroys it in 1970.

By 1922 two more Boissy brothers, Léo and Henrico have joined the family business. In 1924 a new venture is undertaken: the Boissy Furniture Store opens its doors at 476 Victoria, only to close them by 1928. This decision might be connected to the political ambitions of Roméo, who at this time becomes a city councillor and from 1931 to 1935 mayor of Saint-Lambert. The Boissy Market, still his property, moves to 470 Victoria where it stays in business till 1950.

One can safely assume that Alexandre Boissy passed on a gene for commerce and business to his offspring. Almost all his children and their progenies over the next five generations are in some form involved in the commercial development of Saint-Lambert.

One of the latest to follow in the footsteps of his forbearers is Guy Boissy. Born in 1937, he marries Lise LeRoyer, herself a descendant from a prominent Saint Lambert family. They have three sons. He establishes himself in 1960 as an optometrist—where else?—on Victoria Street. Later he relocates to the corner of Notre- Dame and Desaulniers, where the offices and the eyeglass boutique can still be found. Great Uncle Roméo on his part seems to have passed on the passion for politics. Guy Boissy also becomes mayor of Saint-Lambert. He holds this office from 1994 till 2001, the year which saw Saint-Lambert become part of Longueuil. He stays on as one of three councillors, representing the borough of SaintLambert/LeMoyne from 2002 to 2005. During his tenure as mayor, Guy Boissy is instrumental in establishing the Library Foundation, and is president of the fabrique of the Catholic parish of Saint-Lambert. One of his sons, Daniel, also an optometrist, continues the family business, while his second son, François, having inherited his father’s political interests, becomes a city councillor—but in a reconstituted Saint Lambert.

Yves Guillet (2006)