Louis Billouart (c.1704 - c.1770)

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Birthplace: Quimper, Brittany, France
Death: Died in Paris, Ile-de-France, France
Occupation: Governor of French territory of Louisiana
Managed by: Joel Scott Cognevich
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About Louis Billouart

Louis Billouart, Chevalier de Kerlerec (1704–1770) was the governor of the French colony of Louisiana from 1753 to 1763. After the former governor, Pierre François de Rigaud, Marquis de Vaudreuil-Cavagnal, was promoted to the post of Governor of New France, Kerlerec, a naval officer originally from Quimper, France with twenty-five years of service, was chosen to replace him. Kerlerec's administration suffered due to lack of support from the French government, which was immersed in the French and Indian War. Kerlerec took precautions to defend the colony from a possible British attack by erecting a palisade around New Orleans, rebuilding the battery at English Turn and anchoring an old ship at the mouth of the Mississippi which could be sunk to keep out any English ships which tried to enter. However, Kerlerec's request for more troops went unanswered, and Kerlerec tightened his discipline over the troops already stationed in the colony. During his governorship, relations between the Jesuit and the Capuchin orders in the colony were strained, and the local Indian tribes threatened to switch allegiances to the British if they were not provided with more supplies and merchandise. After a few years of not receiving communications or supplies from France, the colony learned that Louisiana had been handed over to the Spanish as a result of the French and Indian War. After many public quarrels with the Commissary-Commissioner, who accused Kerlerec of stealing money from the colony's treasury and acting as a dictator, Kerlerec was recalled to France and thrown into prison in 1763. He was exiled from Paris in 1769 but was exonerated a year later. Kerlerec then returned to Paris where he died in 1770.

There is currently a street named after Kerlerec in New Orleans, which runs through the 7th Ward from Chartres St in the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood, north to Dorgenois St. Due to developments over the years, the road is "broken" and does not run straight through its original course.

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Louis Billouart, Chevalier de Kerlerec's Timeline

Quimper, Brittany, France
September 9, 1770
Age 66
Paris, Ile-de-France, France