The Dubois surname has a high number of my matches to Quebec and France, the Bois and Aubois surnames have has a significant number of matches to Nova Scotia.
The Aubois surname in Nova Scotia is frequently linked to a Marie Aubois B: 1665 Port Royal, Annapolis, Nova Scotia and is frequently reported as bring part Miꞌkmaq.
The Bois surname in Nova Scotia is possibly linked to the DuBois Protestants from Switzerland who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1751 (see below).
“Foreign Protestants” to Nova Scotia
|Dubois, Jean David||16||Martel, Neufchatel||Labourer|
|Dubois, Jean Francois||16||Martel, Neufchatel||Labourer|
Note Neufchatel likely Neuchâtel, Switzerland
The name might also have developed in New France from Coureurs des bois [runners of the woods] who in New France were unlicensed fur traders. Unlike voyageurs, who were licensed to transport goods, coureurs des bois were considered outlaws of sorts because they did not have permits from colonial authorities. The independent coureurs des bois played an important role in the European exploration of the continent. They were also vital in establishing trading contacts with Indigenous peoples.
Or possibly as a corruption of Hautbois settlers in Annapolis Royal (see following).
The Registers of St. Jean-Baptiste, Annapolis Royal, 1702-1755
|Michael Haut Bois||Baptism|
|Charles Hautbois||Baptism||25 March 1723|
|Jean Chrysostome Hautbois||Baptism||15 July 1724|
|Anne Hautbois||Baptism||26 September 1725|
|Cyprien Hautbois||Baptism||16 July 1730|
|Marie Joseph Hautbois||Baptism||28 October 1734|
The Bois name has the highest number of modern (2014) matches to Eastern France.