He was born at St. Denis, the son of a restaurant keeper. He took the first prize for comedy at the Conservatoire in 1812, married an actress with whom he toured France, and came to the Comédie-Française in 1826. Here he remained until 1863, creating more than 250 parts.
He became a professor at the Conservatoire in 1829, and under him Rachel, Rose Cheri (1824-1861), the Brohans and others were trained. He wrote several comedies, among them La Belle-Mère et le gendre (1826), and La Famille poisson (1846). Samson died in Paris on the 28th of March 1871.