Daspit St. Amands in Louisiana

Eighth Degree

VIII. Jean Francois Despie de St Amand, native of Toulouse, France, son of Jacques Daspie and Dominique Bordeliere; married Marie Francoise du Buisson, native of Dunkirk, daughter of Leon du Buisson and Marie Anne Carrep. Recorded in Reg. 1 - 1720-1730, Folio 49, entry #119. Children:

  1. Pierre Daspit St. Amand - born 1723 0r 1724
  2. Dominique Daspit St. Amand - born 1728

At this point the document translated by Dr. G. Lugano ends. The remainder of this history was compiled by Patrick Daspit in 1996 from various papers and documents in his possession. Unfortunately many of these are not clearly identified as to their source. Wherever possible the source is identified and notations have been made to identify and, hopefully resolve some of the discrepancies that exist.


Jean Francois is not listed on the memorial to the Massacre of Fort Rosalie at the Rosalie Plantation in Natchez, that is those of us who have visited the plantations at Natchez. The reason is that Jean Francois was apparently "pre-massacred" in Vidalia, La. (Across the Mississippi river from Natchez) There is no monument to him there either, that I could find. Pages concerning the conditions in which Jean Francois Daspit de St. Amant died. Purportedly occurred about the present location of Vidalia, La. and preceded the massacre at Fort Rosalie. (near Natchez, Ms.) Jack (John H.) Daspit, Jr.


French women and children, the negroes and all the canoes the Natchez had in their possession. Captain de Lassus was sent, by the way of Mobile, to the Choctaws to ascertain whether or not that nation was disposed to side with the French. Every day there came to New Orleans the alarming report of some traveler being murdered on his way down the Mississippi. On the 8th of January, Father Doutreleau, a Jesuit, who, having been attacked at the mouth of Yazoo River, had received two wounds in the arm and lost three men, reached New Orleans. To prevent the recurrence of such events was extremely desirable and on the 15th, Governor Perier dispatched a bark with twenty white men and six negroes, to carry ammunition to the Illinois settlement, and to pick up on the way, protect and escort to New Orleans, all the French travelers they might meet.

On the 16th, the governor received a piece of intelligence which removed a load of anxieties from his mind. It was, that the Choctaws, to the number of seven hundred warriors, commanded by a French officer named Le Sueur, had marched against the Natchez, and that one hundred and fifty warriors of that nation had set off to throw themselves between the Natchez and the Yazoos, to prevent the former from sending away to the latter any portion of the French prisoners, or of the negroes, as it was reported they would do, if they were attacked.


The rendezvous-general of the French who were to operate against the Natchez was at the Tunicas, and that expedition was put under the command of Loubois. While the French were still gathering at that spot, it was deemed expedient to send five men to discover what was going on among the Natchez. They ascended the Mississippi in a boat, and landed, says Le Page du Pratz, at nine miles from the Great Village of the Natchez, at the mouth of a small stream on which that village was situated, and which discharged itself into the Mississippi at the foot of a hill, from which a canoe might be spied six miles off. The French scouts not seen, however, and they felt so secure, that after their having landed, night coming on, they went quietly to sleep, as if they were not in the very lap of danger. The next morning, they breakfasted merrily, and drank so much brandy, that their courage worked itself up to the highest pitch of boldness. Thus, they walked straight toward the Great Village of the Natchez, with out making any attempt at concealment, and they were within two miles of it, when, on a sudden, yelling Indians started up around them in every direction. The French, instead of crying out that they came with peaceful intentions, and of trying to impress the enemy with that persuasion, presumed to defend themselves against such overwhelming odds; and one of them by the name of Navarre, who had been one of the few that had escaped from the great massacre on the 29th of November, was the first to fire. The Indians, however appeared disposed to keep altogether on the defensive, and summoned the French to surrender. But these madmen, throwing themselves into a ravine which presented the appearance of a natural entrenchment, continued their fire, which was at last returned by the Indians. Navarre was wounded, and became more furious: speaking the language of the Natchez, he taunted them with every sort of opprobrious epithet, and went on fighting until he was killed.


The four other Frenchmen, who seemed to have been entirely under the influence of Navarre, and who had been fighting also with great courage, surrendered soon as he was dead. They were conducted to the Great Sun, and Mesplais, or Mesplet, an officer of noble birth, of the province of Bearn, in France, who ought to have known how to control the imprudent temerity of such a man as Navarre a mere soldier; destitute of education, was interrogated by the Indian prince. On his being asked what the object of his visit was, Mesplais answered that he had been sent by his chief as the bearer of propositions of peace. "But, observed the Great Sun, how camest thou to fire at those who merely said to thee to surrender? One of thy companions is killed and thou art wounded, through his and thy own fault. Is this the conduct of peace-bearers " Mesplais answered that Navarre had taken too much of the fire-liquor; and begged the Great Sun to remember that, on the death of this man, he, Mesplais, had ordered his companions to lay down their arms. The Great Sun appeared to be satisfied with this explanation, and ordered them to be released, but to be closely watched. He then sent for one of the female prisoners, woman by the name of Desnoyers, and said to her: " Write to thy great war-chief, that if he wishes for peace, and desires that all the French prisoners and the negroes be restored to him, he must send me for every one of them so many casks of brandy, so many blankets, muskets, shirts, provisions, etc." He wanted so many different things, and in such quantity, that it would have been impossible to find in the whole colony what he had the presumption to ask, even if it had been thought to be an act of expediency and of good policy to yield so much to these barbarians. Desnoyers wrote down what she was told, and availed herself of this opportunity to inform Loubois of the miserable condition in which the French captives were, and of the dangers which threatened them. She did not fail to communicate all she knew about the preparations the Natchez had made for defense, and to impart every other piece of intelligence she thought might be useful to the French. The Great Sun delivered the letter to one of Mesplais' companions, and ordered him to carry it to the French chief at the Tunicas, and to inform him that if a favorable answer was not sent back in three days, the hostages whom the Natchez had in their possession, would abide the consequences of their anger and disappointment. Eagerly did the French emissary depart on his mission," even without looking back;" says Le Page du Pratz. So active did he prove himself, that he arrived on that same day at the Tunica, and handed the letter to Loubois, vouchsafed no answer.


While the Natchez remained in the expectation of answer, they treated their prisoners kindly, but .on the fourth day after the departure of the French emissary, the Great Sun, having given up, all hopes of his return, flew into a violent passion, and sentenced to death the three other Frenchmen. Two of them, one a common soldier, and the other an officer of education and birth, by the name of St. Amand, were killed instantly, without being exposed to much suffering. Unfortunately for Mesplais, he had made himself conspicuous in some of the preceding wars of the French against the Natchez, and he had been for the Indians an object of a particular notice, on account of the long flowing hair which curled down on his shoulders, and which made it a very desirable scalp. They concentrated therefore, the fury of their revenge on such a well-known warrior, and swore they would make him weep like a woman. He was tied to the celebrated Indian stake, exquisitely tortured during three days and three nights, and died at last, after having exhibited superhuman fortitude, and without having gratified his torturers by uttering ...

Ninth Degree

IX. Pierre Daspit St. Amand (Pierre #1) was the son of Jean Francois Daspit St. Amand and Marie Francoise du Buisson (See above) also referred to in some places as John Pierre. According to the account cited earlier, Pierre Daspit came to Louisiana when he was forced to leave France due to an "unfortunate duel and disastrous affairs". In another location the following is recorded:

"The tradition is that Pierre, Sr. came to Louisiana from France, bringing with him his three sons - Pierre, Antoine and Alexandre. They came just before the French Revolution (1789)."

The "tradition" cited above does not however reconcile with a number of other facts which appear to be fairly well established. First of all, the family records indicate that the information on Pierre's children is from St. Louis Cathedral records. While it it is possible that these refer to births in France, it is more likely the births were in Louisiana. Pierre's last will was dated New Orleans, 1780 and he died in 1784 also suggests an earlier date of arrival in Louisiana. In the history of the COTEAU DE FRANCE that was written by Clement Bourgois Jr., there are several other important facts mentioned (although their source is not). This documents notes that the Daspit de St. Amand came from France in about 1715. At also mentions that Dominique, the son of Jean Francois Daspit had a son named Antoine who was born in 1757 and married Eulalie Zeringue in 1790. (Antoine will become an important individual in the Coteau De France and the Lanfear affair). Based on this then, Antoine is not Pierre's son but his cousin. One supposition on the part of the author is that the circumstances cited in Dr. Lugano's translation surrounding Pierre's coming to Louisiana may actually refer to Jean Francois who is referred to as Jean Pierre in some documents. The one point that tends to corroborate the "tradition" cited above is the fact that Pierre(#2)'s will (see translation below) states that Antoine is his brother.

Pierre (#1) was married first to Marie Anne Carmouche. Their children were:

  1. Anne Daspit St. Amand - born in 1751
  2. Marie Francoise Daspit St. Amand - born in 1753
  3. Pierre Daspit St. Amand (Pierre #2, also Pierre Jr.) - born in 1755 (follows)
  4. Michel Daspit St. Amand - born in 1756
  5. Jean Francois Daspit St. Amand - born in 1759
  6. Alexandre Daspit St Amand - born in 1761 (follows)
  7. Rosalie Genevieve Daspit St. Amand - born in 1762

The family records indicate that the above information is from St. Louis Cathedral records and that, of the above, only Pierre, Michel & Jean Francois and Alexandre left heirs. [7]

After the death of Marie Anne Carmouche, Pierre (#1) married Marian Leroux-Courcier, the widow of August Courcier by whom she had two daughters, Adele and Celeste[8]. Madame Leroux-Courcier was the governess from New Orleans who had been employed to teach Pierre (#1)'s children. Adele married Marcel (or Marcellus) Daspit.

Pierre (#1)'s will is on file in Spanish at Cabildo. The will mentions five commissions received from the Spanish Government, among them a captain's and a colonel's commission. There is a family tradition that Pierre (#1) was known as "the general". The tradition is that for services rendered the Spanish Crown he received a grant of some five thousand acres of territory known as the Coteau de France.

NOTE: The above information on Pierre (#1 or Pierre Sr.) is from a memo with the following note:

March 19, 1933

The above memo was given to me by Edna who found same among Uncle Isaac's papers. It is not known from what source it was obtained.

V. N. D.[9]

Tenth Degree - Pierre Daspit St. Amand

X. Pierre Daspit St. Amand (Pierre #2) was the son of Pierre Daspit St. Amand and Marie Anne Carmouche (Pierre #1 - See above). Pierre (#2) is sometimes also referred to as Pierre Jr. Pierre married Marie Mayeaux, the daughter of Francois Mayeaux and Nicole Prevost on November 28, 1778. Their children were:

  1. Pierre - born in 1779 (presumably died young)
  2. Marie Anne - born in 1781
  3. Pierre born in 1784
  4. Marcel (Marcellus) born in 1790, died 1855 (follows)
  5. Baselice - born in 1800, baptized 1801 in Plattenville La.

Pierre (#2) was born while Kerlac was governor of Louisiana . When he was eight years old, the territory of Louisiana was transferred to Spain, in 1863. The Spanish Domination lasted until 1800 (1803). He was Judge of the Interior Parish of Lafourche. He was sixty years old at the time of his daughter, Basilice's marriage at Thibodaux, of which a copy of the court record follows (Page 93 - Acts 1814-15. Part II.)

Some family records show that Pierre #1(See Footnote 8) was married a second time to Marian Leroux-Courcier, however these are not original documents and it is more likely they actually refer to a second marriage of Pierre #2. There were no children by this union, however Marian had two daughters from her first marriage, Adele and Celeste, to August Courcier. Adele married Pierre (#2)'s son Marcel and both Adele and Celeste seem to have been withesses at Basalice's wedding (See below).

Marriage of Bazilice Daspit St. Amand

Today the 12th day of September 1815 and the 40th of the independence of the United States of America Before me Pierre Daspie, judge of the interior parish appeared Monsieur Mathieu Hotard who requested me to register the celebration of marriage which he presents in the following manner:

Interior Parish of Lafourche, State of Louisiana, 12th of September, 1815 and the 40th of the Independence, I the undersigned V. Coulon, justice of the peace for this parish at the request of the Honorable Judge Pierre Daspie, was brought to his home to join in the Holy Bonds of Matrimony the Sieur Mathieu Hotard, inhabitant of the Parish of St. Charles, age 42 years, native of the Parish of St. Louis, legitimate son of Mathieu Hotard and Marie Genevieve Bourgeois on one part.

And Miss Basilice Daspit St. Amand, minor daughter of the said Pierre Daspit Saint Amant and Marie Mayeaux deceased on the other part, assisted by her Father.

After having received the reciprocal consent of both parties and fulfilled the ordinary ceremonies, ordered by law, the said parties have assigned their signatures and mutually promised to ratify their marriage in the face of our Mother, the Holy Church C. A. &R. at the earliest possible.

Made in the presence of the undersigned witnesses the day and year mentioned above:

Signed: Mathieu Hotard Basalice Daspit

Witnesses: Daspit St. Amand, Courcier Daspit, Lag Daspit, Vol. Daspit, Louis Courcier, Celeste Courcier, Adele Daspit, Chas. Beard.

Signed par me the said Coulon, Justice of the peace.

Registered by me day and year mentioned above.

Signed P. Daspit, Judge.

From Court Record at Thibodaux, La.

Coat of Arms 1209 gives spelling as St. Amand.

The will of Pierre (#2) is on file in French at Thibodaux dated September 20, 1837 (See Translation below). he died September 22, 1837.


The undersigned, Pierre St. Amand, native of Louisiana and resident of Orleans Parish, about 62 years old, physically sick, but with sound mind, memory and intelligence declares that the following is my will and act of last will. I GIVE AND BEQUEATH HALF OF MY PROPERTY in general to my 6 natural children, namely: Martin, Genevieve, Hilaire, Louis, Louis Ovide and Mary St. Amand. The said half of my property to be divided between them in equal parts. I name guardian of my two children: Louis Ovide and Mary, my son Hilaire, and in his default, my son Louis. In the case of the death of one of the said two children, Louis Ovide and Mary, before their majority and without having disposed of their property through testament, the bequest that will come to him in my succession according to the above disposition will be revertible to the survivor of the two.

OF THE OTHER HALF OF MY PROPERTY I give and bequest to Celeste Mechin St. Martin, wife of the said Zenon Boudousquie, the sum of $2000.00 paid once. To Emma Mechin St. Martin, wife of Mr. Witte, the sum of $2000.00 paid once. To my Godchild Mathilde, daughter of Jan Bte Plauche, the sum of $3000.00 paid once. The my Godchild Pierre Bertrand, son of Alexis Bertrand, the sum of $500.00 paid once. To Marie Louise said Heloise Escaud the sum of $2000.00 paid once. To Francoise Sabatier, wife of Joseph Cheval, the sum of $500.00 paid once. To my brother Antoine St. Amand, my watch and to my old friend Mr. Francoise Adam, the sum of $2000.00 paid once.

I give and bequeath to my slaves named below: Andre my old commandant, to Manon old negress and her daughter Lise, to Charles about 70 years old, to old Congo, Genevieve McCarty said Cambasold negress, and immediately after my death, my testament executors as named below, will fulfill to the expenses of my succession, all the formalities required by law, so that my said slaves will enjoy as soon as possible the liberty I give them in regard for their faithful services.

After my death, my testament executors will charge the sum of $2000.00 they will take FROM THE SECOND HALF OF MY PROPERTY, not disposed of in favor of my children, the shares of the State Bank of Louisiana, and the dividends thereof I give and bequeath to my brother Sylvan St. Amand to have and enjoy all his life and dispose as he sees fit. After his death, the said shares of the bank will become the property of his children to who I give and bequeath the aforesaid time to use and dispose as their property.

After the bequests that I make by this present will have been paid and liquidated and my debts paid, IN CASE THE DIVERS BEQUESTS THAT I MAKE ON THE HALF NOT DISPOSED OF IN FAVOR OF MY CHILDREN WILL EXCEED THAT HALF, they will be reductible to "une mare la livre" (mare a pound ????) except for the liberty which will have priority over the other donations.

FOR THE SURPLUS OF MY PROPERTY, after the said donations have been paid I name my universal legatee and my heir Mr. Charles Perret. I name as my testament executors Messieurs James H. Shepherd, William M. Montgomery, merchants, in this town, to act jointly or separately, one in default of the other, in all things respecting my succession, without recourse to the court. I annul and revoke all wills and codicils I may have made before the present for which I stand.

MADE IN NEW ORLEANS the 18th of AUGUST 1821.

Also I give and bequeath to my sister Eulalie St. Amand, widow of Chesne, the sum of $4000.00 paid once. After my death my slave Lala, colored, about 55 years old, will receive her liberty. I give and bequeath to my brother Antoine St. Amand, the sum of $4000.00 to be invested by him and the interest to be given when collected, without touching the capital, and after the death of said Joseph, the sum of $4000.00 will be given in equal parts to the other children of my said brother. I give and bequeath to Miss Felicite Paillat, the sum of $50.00 paid once. To Isabelle Fazende in gratitues for her care the sum of $500.00. To Celeste Escaud the sum of $200.00. To Saintville St. Amand, the youngest of the two sons of my brother Sylvain St. Amand $500.00. To Rosalie Clapier, my Godchild, $400.00.


(SIGNED) Pierre St. Amand.

Ne varietur (not to be changed) (SIGNED) Jn. Pitot, Judge.

Eleventh Degree

X. Alexandre Daspit de St Amand (son of Pierre Daspit St. Amand and Marie Anne Carmouche), born February 3, 1760, who married on November 22, 1787, demoiselle Marguerite Zeringue, who gave him nine children:

  1. Joeseph Alexandre Daspit de Saint Amand, born on June 1, 1786, who died young.
  2. Josephine Daspit de Saint Amand, born December 25, 1787.
  3. Aimee Daspit de Saint Amand, born March 31, 1790.
  4. Agathe Rosalie Daspit de Saint Amand, born October 30 1793.
  5. Marie Anne Daspit de Saint Amand, born October 8, 1795, died young.
  6. Pierre Geoffroy Daspit de St Amand, born March 6, 1798 who continued the lineage. (follows)
  7. Venanee Daspit de Saint Amand, born June 22, 1800.
  8. Telephore Daspit de Saint Amand, born May 21, 1802 who left no descents.
  9. Antoine Daspit de Saint Amand, born February 15, 1806.

Eleventh Degree

XI. Marcel (or Marcellus) Daspit was born in 1790, the son of Pierre(#2) Daspit St. Amand and Marie Mayeaux, probably in Lafourche. Marcel was first married to Adele Courcier in about October, 1809. Adele Courcier was the daughter of August Courcier and Marian Leroux-Courcier (who was also Pierre #1's second wife). The children of Marcel Daspit[10] and Adele Courcier were:

  1. Justin - Born August 8,1812 - died April 21, 1877
  2. Marie Neige "La Neige" - Born unknown - Died 1895
  3. Marcellas
  4. Robert
  5. Justine - Born about 1814
Adele Courcier died in about 1816 and Marcel married Elise Baudoin in about 1822. The children of Marcel Daspit and Elise Baudoin were:
  1. Pierre - Born in 1825
  2. Felix - Born in 1827
  3. Hugh C. - Born in 1829
  4. Eliza 1831
  5. Marcellite 1834
  6. Elvire 1836
  7. Claiborne Henry
  8. Francois 1839
  9. Felide 1845
  10. Taylor
  11. Elodie
Marcellus came to Terrebonne from Lafourche and bought the place known as the Buddy Brown place, where he and his sons built a horse power sugar mill and ran it with success. Marcellus died in 1855 after his son Justin's second marriage.

Eleventh Degree

XI. Pierre Geoffroy Daspit de St Amand (son of Alexandre Daspit de St Amand and Marguerite Zeringue), born in Louisiana on March 6, 1798, and the present representative of the family married in October 1831 [11], mademoiselle Jeane Marguerite Collet, a native of Baltimore (North America). Three children were born from this marriage.

  1. Francois Gustave Daspit de Saint Amand, bornAugust 7 1832, in Santiago, a city in the Island of Cuba, in America.
  2. Paul Ernest Daspit de Saint Amand, born June 20, 1836, who died young.
  3. Clemence Daspit de Saint Amand, born October 5, 1843, who died only a few years of age.
Elsewhere it is stated that Francois eventually returned to France.