About Jean Michiele de L'Epinay
Jean Michiele de L'Epinay was the governor of the French colony of Louisiana from 1717 to 1718. Before serving as governor, Lepinay had been a naval officer and served over twenty years in Canada. He was appointed governor by Antoine Crozat, the royally appointed administrator of the colony. Lepinay came to the colony with a new Commissary-Commissioner, fifty new colonists, and three companies of infantry. However, Lepinay soon found himself at odds with Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne de Bienville, twice governor and an influential leader in the colony. Failing to show any improvement over the administration of the former governor, Sieur de Cadillac, Lepinay was replaced as governor by Bienville after Crozat successfully petitioned to be released from his agreement to develop the colony.
LÉPINAY, Jean-Michel, seigneur de Lépinay et de la Longueville, governor. Born, Fougères, Brittany, France, ca. 1665. Joined the French navy in 1683 and accompanied French forces to Canada in 1687. Promoted to rank of ensign and later lieutenant. Served as honorary port captain of Quebec. Returned to France and was assigned to Rochefort. November 1, 1705, he was promoted to rank of lieutenant commander. Through patronage of comte de Toulouse, head of the Conseil de la Marine, secured appointment as governor of Louisiana on March 16, 1716. On October 21, 1716, while awaiting departure he was awarded the Cross of St. Louis. Left France in December 1716, reached Mobile March 9, 1717, and immediately took over his duties as governor. Short term in office met with almost constant wrangling among various royal officials. Because of this, following the transfer of the colony's trading rights to the Company of the West in late 1717 he was recalled on February 9, 1718. Shortly before leaving Mobile for France he was notified of his nomination as governor of Grenada. Before accepting his new position he was forced to defend himself against charges of corruption and malfeasance in office. Exonerated of all charges he sailed from France May 18, 1720, for Grenada, reaching there on June 28, 1720. Died, January 3, 1721, while visiting the governor of the French West Indies in Martinique. B.C. Sources: Marcel Giraud, Histoire de la Louisiane française, II (1958), III (1966); Emile Lauvrière, Histoire de Louisiane française (1940); Dictionary of Canadian Biography, II (1969).