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Accordion Makers in Montmagny

Despite being home to many accordionists, Montmagny actually had no local accordion makers before the mid-20th century. Of course, there were some repairmen, like Joseph Messervier, who would strain their eyes mending accordions by the light of an oil lamp. But there were no makers. Joseph’s son, Marcel Messervier, eventually opened the region’s first accordion-making business in the 1950s. Showing great ingenuity, Marcel taught himself to make accordions by watching his father, as well as through trial and error. During this period, the craft production of diatonic accordions with a single row of 10 buttons began to take hold in Montmagny.

Black and white photomontage, with a portrait of Marcel Messervier inset over the extended bellows of an accordion.

Marcel Messervier, 1990

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Other instrument makers appeared over the years, like Ulric Lacombe and André Labonté. They built accordions for their own use, as well as for friends and family. But it was not until 1991 that a second commercial manufacturer opened its doors. Established by Raynald Ouellet and Sylvain Vézina, Accordéon mélodie still produces accordions today.