Francisco Bouligny

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Francisco Bouligny
Portrait of Francisco Bouligny, Unknown Painter (circa 1770s)
Portrait by unknown artist
9th Governor of Spanish Louisiana
In office
1799–1799
MonarchCharles IV
Preceded byManuel Gayoso de Lemos
Succeeded bySebastián Calvo de la Puerta
Personal details
Born
Francisco Domingo Joseph Bouligny y Paret

(1736-09-04)September 4, 1736
Alicante, Spain
DiedNovember 25, 1800(1800-11-25) (aged 64)
New Orleans, Louisiana
Resting placeSt. Louis Cathedral
Spouse(s)Marie-Louise Le Sénéchal d'Auberville
Known forFounder of New Iberia, Louisiana
SignatureFran. co Bouligny
Military service
AllegianceFlag of Cross of Burgundy.svg Viceroyalty of New Spain
 Kingdom of Spain
Branch/serviceSpanish Army
Years of service1758–1800
RankBrigadier general
Battles/warsLouisiana Rebellion
American Revolutionary War

Francisco Domingo Joseph Bouligny y Paret (/frənˈsɪs.k bl.əɡˈn/;[1] 4 September 1736 – 25 November 1800) was a high-ranking Spanish military and political figure in Spanish Louisiana. As a francophone in Spanish service, he was a bridge between Creole and French Louisiana and Spain following the transfer of the territory from France to Spain.[2] Bouligny served as lieutenant governor under Bernardo de Gálvez, founded the city of New Iberia in 1779,[3][4] and served as acting military governor in 1799.

Early life[edit]

Bouligny, called "Frasquito" by his family,[2][5] was born in 1736 in Alicante, Spain, to Jean (Juan) Bouligny, a successful French merchant, and Marie Paret, who was from Alicante. At the age of 10, he was sent to a boys' school founded by the Bishop of Orihuela, from which he graduated in 1750 and joined the family import-export business.[6]

Early military career[edit]

In 1758, Bouligny enlisted in the Spanish army, joining the Regiment of Zamora.[7] A year later, he transferred to the Royal Regiment of Spanish Guards and was commissioned as a lieutenant in the infantry and sent to Havana, Cuba, in 1762. He was stationed there until 1769 when he joined Alejandro O'Reilly's expedition to put down the Louisiana Rebellion. Since Bouligny was fluent in French, he was charged with delivering the Spanish government's messages to the Francophone inhabitants of Louisiana[2][8][9] and he acted as an interpreter during the military trial of the rebellion's leaders.[10]

Bouligny was promoted to the rank of brevet captain in the newly formed Fixed Louisiana Infantry Battalion.[11] In 1772 he was appointed a full captain. In 1775, Bouligny was granted leave to return to Europe to settle family affairs. While in Spain, Bouligny wrote a discourse on the population of New Orleans and Spanish Louisiana (Memoria histórica y política sobre la Luisiana).[12] Memoria brought the Spanish court's attention to its Louisiana holdings and their potential for agricultural development and trade. It also highlighted the importance of good relations with the region's Native American peoples, and the need to improve the territory's defenses as a strategic buffer against British North America.[8][13][14] To this end, Bouligny included in Memoria detailed suggestions for new and strengthened fortifications along the territory's many waterways.[15]

Return to Louisiana[edit]

In 1777, Bouligny returned to Louisiana, where he was named lieutenant governor by Gov. Bernardo de Gálvez. Among his responsibilities was managing trade and relations with Native American tribes and founding new settlements. In Memoria, Bouligny advocated settling Spanish and other Catholic immigrants throughout Louisiana to bolster Spain's hold on the territory, including Anglo-Americans who were willing to switch their loyalties to Spain.[16] Following on this settlement plan, in April 1779, Bouligny brought a group of 500 Malagueño and Isleño colonists up Bayou Teche to establish the city of New Iberia.[4][17][18]

However, the relationship between Bouligny and Gálvez was a tense one. The two clashed over issues around trade and settlement, in particular the location of the New Iberia settlement and Gálvez's approach towards British encroachments on the Mississippi River.[19][20] Bouligny also mixed personal and official business, including at least one occasion paying himself for the use of his slaves.[21] Gálvez steadily worked to isolate Bouligny, calling into question his actions, auditing heavily the expenses of the New Iberia settlement and Bouligny's personal finances, and not recommending him for advancement.[19][21][22]

In late 1779, during the American Revolutionary War, Spain attacked British holdings in West Florida, and Bouligny participated in the capture of Fort Bute and the Battle of Baton Rouge. In 1780, Bouligny led an expedition against the British at Mobile,[17][23] and he later participated in the Siege of Pensacola.[2][19]

In 1783, Bouligny was ordered to eliminate a colony of fugitive slaves (cimarróns) downriver from New Orleans. By June 1784, the expedition captured 60 people, including the colony's leader, Jean Saint Malo;[24] in the following investigation, officials identified a dozen slaves as helping to plan escapes from plantations.[25][26]

In 1784, while Gov. Esteban Rodríguez Miró travelled to West Florida to treat with the Muscogee, Chickasaw, and Choctaw nations, Bouligny served as acting governor of Louisiana.[27] The next year, Miró sent Bouligny to Natchez to enforce Spanish rule in the area and to resist American encroachment related to the West Florida Controversy.[28] In March 1791, Bouligny was appointed colonel and placed in command of the Fixed Louisiana Infantry Regiment, a post he held until his death in 1800.[19][29]

Following the death of Gov. Manuel Gayoso de Lemos on 18 July 1799, Francisco Bouligny was appointed as military governor of Louisiana, with Nicolás María Vidal as civil governor, until the new governor general, Sebastián Calvo de la Puerta y O'Farrill, Marquess de Casa Calvo, reached the colony on 18 December 1799.[2]

Death and honors[edit]

Bouligny died in New Orleans on 25 November 1800 following a long illness. He was honored by being buried in St. Louis Cathedral.[30] In September 1800, the Spanish Crown appointed Bouligny brigadier general, but the written copy of the commission did not reach Louisiana until after his death.

Bouligny left behind what was considered an extensive library of 148 books, a wine cellar holding some 500 bottles of wine, and 31 slaves.[31][32]

Personal life[edit]

Bouligny was described as being "rather tall and slight, with a noble military bearing, easy and dignified in his manners, and warm in his friendship."[33] Throughout his life, Bouligny kept up active correspondence in both French and Spanish with his family and officials around the world.[5]

On 29 December 1770, Bouligny married Marie-Louise Le Sénéchal d'Auberville (1750–1834) who belonged to a prominent French Louisiana family.[34][35][36][37] They had four children, including Charles Dominique Joseph Bouligny who was elected by the legislature to the U.S. Senate in the 1820s.[2]

Bouligny's older brother, Juan Bouligny, served as the first Spanish ambassador to the Ottoman Empire from May 1779 to September 1782.[38]

References[edit]

  • Din, Gilbert C. (1993). Francisco Bouligny: A Bourbon Soldier in Spanish Louisiana. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press. ISBN 978-0807117958.
  • Martin, Fontaine (1990). A History of the Bouligny Family and Allied Families. Lafayette, Louisiana: The Center for Louisiana Studies, University of Southwestern Louisiana. ISBN 978-0940984516.
  • Palencia Pérez, Remedios (2007). Francisco Bouligny: Un Alicantino en la Colonización de Luisiana (in Spanish). Alicante, Spain: Instituto Alicantino de Cultura Juan Gil-Albert. ISBN 978-84-7784-516-4. Retrieved 19 October 2018.
  • Ribes Iborra, Vicent (2002). "II. Luisiana: Bouligny, la vigillia de la razón". Presencia valenciana en los Estados Unidos: ss. XVI-XIX (in Spanish). Valencia, Spain: Biblioteca Valenciana. pp. 33–55. ISBN 978-8448230234. Retrieved 25 March 2013.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Eakin, Sue; Culbertson, Manie (June 1998). Louisiana: The Land and Its People (4 ed.). Gretna, Louisiana: Pelican Publishing Co. p. 532. ISBN 9781565542891.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Martin, Fontaine (1990). A History of the Bouligny Family and Allied Families. Lafayette, Louisiana: The Center for Louisiana Studies, University of Southwestern Louisiana. ISBN 978-0940984516.
  3. ^ Bergerie, Maurine (2000). They Tasted Bayou Water. Gretna, Louisiana: Pelican Publishing Co. ISBN 978-1455612994.
  4. ^ a b Din, Gilbert C. (Spring 1976). "Lieutenant Colonel Francisco Bouligny and the Malagueño Settlement at New Iberia, 1779". Louisiana History: The Journal of the Louisiana Historical Association. 17 (2): 187–202. JSTOR 4231587.
  5. ^ a b Thomas, Jenelle Katherine (2017). "Vous êtes hombre de bien": A study of bilingual family letters to and from colonial Louisiana, 1748-1867 (PhD). University of California, Berkeley. Retrieved April 12, 2019.
  6. ^ Ribes Iborra, Vicent (2002). "II. Luisiana: Bouligny, la vigillia de la razón". Presencia valenciana en los Estados Unidos: ss. XVI-XIX. Valencia, Spain: Biblioteca Valenciana. pp. 33–55. ISBN 978-8448230234. Retrieved 2013-03-25.
  7. ^ "Certificate of service of Colonel Francisco Bouligny, after 1800 November 25". Rosemonde E. and Emile Kuntz collection, Manuscripts Collection 600, Louisiana Research Collection, Series: Spanish colonial period, 1769-1803, Box: 6, File: 10. New Orleans, Louisiana: Howard-Tilton Memorial Library, Tulane University. 1954. Retrieved 22 October 2018.
  8. ^ a b Weddle, Robert S. (1995). Changing Tides: Twilight and Dawn in the Spanish Sea, 1763-1803. College Station, Texas: Texas A&M University Press. ISBN 978-0-89096-661-7.
  9. ^ Cormier, Steven A. (in progress). "Book Eight: A New Acadia". The Acadians of Louisiana: A Synthesis. Jennings, Louisiana: self published. Retrieved 2018-08-29. Check date values in: |year= (help)
  10. ^ de Pedro, Marqués de Casa Mena, José Montero (2000) [1979]. The Spanish in New Orleans and Louisiana [Españoles en Nueva Orleans y Luisiana]. Gretna, Louisiana: Pelican Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4556-1227-7. Retrieved 18 November 2013.
  11. ^ Din, Gilbert C.; Harkins, John E. (1996). New Orleans Cabildo: Colonial Louisiana's First City Government, 1769–1803. Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana State University Press. pp. 13–14. ISBN 978-0-8071-2042-2. Retrieved 13 April 2019.
  12. ^ Bouligny, Francisco (16 Aug 1776). Memoria histórica y política sobre la Luisiana. Retrieved 2013-03-25.
  13. ^ Din, Gilbert C. (1978). "Protecting the 'Barrera': Spain's Defenses in Louisiana, 1763–1779". Louisiana History: The Journal of the Louisiana Historical Association. 19 (2): 183–211. JSTOR 4231775.
  14. ^ Hoffman, Louise C. (2000). "'Luisiana': The Spanish" (PDF). The Historic New Orleans Collection Quarterly. 18 (4): 2–5. Retrieved 2018-10-05.
  15. ^ Cruz Freire, Pedro (2018). "La llave de Nueva España. Proyectos defensivos para los territorios de Luisiana (1770-1795)" [The Key to New Spain: Defensive Projects for the Territory of Louisiana (1770-1795)]. Ars Longa. Cuadernos de Arte (in Spanish) (27): 113–124. doi:10.7203/arslonga.27.11198.
  16. ^ Fehrenbach, T.R. (2000). Lone Star: A History of Texas and the Texans (Updated ed.). Cambridge, Massachusetts: Da Capo Press. pp. 110–112. ISBN 978-1-4976-0970-9.
  17. ^ a b Quintero Saravia, Gonzalo M. (23 March 2018). Bernardo de Gálvez: Spanish Hero of the American Revolution. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press. ISBN 978-1-4696-4080-8. Retrieved 11 October 2018.
  18. ^ Villeré, Sidney Louis (1972). The Canary Islands Migration to Louisiana, 1778-1783: The History and Passenger Lists of the Isleños Volunteer Recruits and Their Families. New Orleans, Louisiana: Genealogical Publishing Company. p. vii. Retrieved 11 April 2019.
  19. ^ a b c d Din, Gilbert C. (1993). Francisco Bouligny: A Bourbon Soldier in Spanish Louisiana. Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana State University Press. ISBN 978-0807117958.
  20. ^ Seguí Romá, Vicente (2012). Comerciantes extranjeros en Alicante (1700-1750): Hombres de negocios franceses y genoveses en una ciudad mediterraneá [Foreign traders in Alicante (1700-1750): French and Genoese businessmen in a Mediterranean city] (PhD) (in Spanish). Universidad de Alicante. Retrieved 5 December 2018.
  21. ^ a b Powell, Lawrence N. (2012). The Accidental City: Improvising New Orleans. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press. pp. 187–189. ISBN 978-0-674-06544-4. Retrieved 5 December 2018.
  22. ^ Nunemaker, J. Horace (August 1945). "The Bouligny Affair in Louisiana". The Hispanic American Historical Review. 25 (3): 339–363. doi:10.2307/2507969. JSTOR 2507969.
  23. ^ Beerman, Eric (October 1979). "'Yo Solo' not 'Solo': Juan Antonio de Riaño" (PDF). The Florida Historical Quarterly. LVIII (2): 174–184. Retrieved 2016-06-22.
  24. ^ Voisin, Erin Elizabeth (2008). Saint Maló remembered (MA). Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana State University.
  25. ^ Din, Gilbert C. (1999). Spaniards, Planters, and Slaves: The Spanish Regulation of Slavery in Louisiana, 1763-1803. College Station, Texas: Texas A&M University Press. ISBN 978-0890969045.
  26. ^ Hall, Gwendolyn Midlo (1995). Africans in Colonial Louisiana: The Development of Afro-Creole Culture in the Eighteenth Century. Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana State University Press. ISBN 978-0807119990.
  27. ^ Cowan, Walter Greaves; McGuire, Jack B. (2010). Louisiana Governors: Rulers, Rascals, and Reformers. Jackson, Mississippi: University Press of Mississippi. pp. 50–51. ISBN 978-1-60473-320-4. Retrieved 17 October 2018.
  28. ^ Din, Gilbert C. (July 1981). "War Clouds on the Mississippi: Spain's 1785 Crisis in West Florida" (PDF). The Florida Historical Quarterly. LX (1): 51–76. Retrieved 2016-06-22.
  29. ^ Din, Gilbert C. (Winter 2002). "'For Defense of Country and the Glory of Arms': Army Officers in Spanish Louisiana, 1766-1803". Louisiana History: The Journal of the Louisiana Historical Association. 43 (1): 5–40. JSTOR 4233810.
  30. ^ Moore II, J.D. (February 20, 2012). "Francisco Bouligny". Soldier, Administrator. Find a Grave. Retrieved September 16, 2016.
  31. ^ Hanger, Kimberly S. (2006). A Medley of Cultures: Louisiana History at the Cabildo. New Orleans, Louisiana: Louisiana Museum Foundation. Retrieved 2013-04-04.
  32. ^ Din, Gilbert C. (1981). "The Death and Succession of Francisco Bouligny". Louisiana History: The Journal of the Louisiana Historical Association. 22 (3): 307–315. JSTOR 4232101.
  33. ^ French, Benjamin Franklin (1853). Historical Collections of Louisiana: Embracing Many Rare and Valuable Documents Relating to the Natural, Civil and Political History of that State. 5. New York City, New York: Lamport, Blakeman & Law. pp. 182–183. Retrieved 15 October 2018.
  34. ^ Arthur, Stanley Clisby; de Kernion, George Campbell Huchet (2009). Old Families of Louisiana. Baltimore, Maryland: Clearfield. p. 235. ISBN 978-0-8063-4688-5. Retrieved 11 April 2019.
  35. ^ King, Grace Elizabeth (1921). Creole Families of New Orleans. New York City, New York: The Macmillan Co. pp. 295–296. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
  36. ^ The Historic New Orleans Collection. "The Francisco Bouligny Lecture". Retrieved 2013-03-25.
  37. ^ "Marie-Louise Le Sénéchal d'Auberville Bouligny". Find a Grave. Retrieved October 15, 2018.
  38. ^ Çiçek Ünal, Ayşe (2015). The First Spanish Ambassador to the Sublime Porte: Juan de Bouligny and His Early Activities in İstanbul Based on His Diary (PDF) (MA). İstanbul Şehir University. Retrieved 17 October 2018.


Preceded by
Manuel Gayoso de Lemos
Spanish Governor of Louisiana
July 1799-December 1799
With: Nicolás María Vidal
Succeeded by
Sebastián Calvo de la Puerta y O'Farrill