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Dumont de Montigny

Born in July 31, 1696 / Died in 1760 / France / French

Dumont de Montigny poet from France was born on July 31, 1696, had 63 years and died in 1760. Poems were written mainly in French language. Dominant movement is other.


Jean-François-Benjamin Dumont de Montigny, or Dumont de Montigny, was born in Paris, France on July 31, 1696, and died in 1760 in Pondicherry, India. His writings about the French colony of Louisiana include a two-volume history published in 1753, as well as an epic poem and a prose memoir preserved in manuscript and published long after his death.[1]

He was the youngest of six sons of Jacques François Dumont, an avocat au parlement de Paris, that is, a prominent magistrate.[1] In surviving documents, he often signed his name as François-Benjamin Dumont, but history works and library catalogs have preserved the "Jean."[2] The name "de Montigny" was not used by most other members of his family, and at least one scholar has asserted that he assumed it as a false title of nobility when he was living in Louisiana.[3] This was not true, however, as one niece did use the surname as he did.[4]

He was educated at a Jesuit collège, or grammar school, and went into the French military.[1] Through the influence of his family, he obtained a commission in the French colonial navy, and sailed to Quebec in 1715, where for two years he spent most of his time as a patient in the Hôtel-Dieu or hospital until he sailed back to France.[2]

In 1738 Dumont returned to France,[5] along with his wife and two children, Marie Françoise, born November 28, 1731, and Jean-François, baptized in New Orleans on January 2, 1733.[8] He took up residence in Port-Louis, Morbihan, the port from which he had sailed to Louisiana. As captain of the gates in the citadel of Port-Louis, he again quarreled with his superior officers. In 1747 he wrote out a 443-page memoir of his life, dedicated to Belle-Isle.[2]

By 1750 he was back in Paris, developing a reputation as an expert on Louisiana by drawing maps and publishing essays in learned journals. It appears that he may have collaborated with Antoine-Simon Le Page du Pratz, who published a series of articles on Louisiana in the Journal Œconomique, a periodical devoted to science and commercial topics. Dumont also published two brief pieces in the journal and wrote a book about his experiences in the New World, Mémoires historiques sur la Louisane.[9] Dumont's book relates one of the two earliest accounts of Moncacht-Apé's journey across North America; the other is in Le Page du Pratz's Histoire de la Louisiane.[10]

After publishing his book, Dumont obtained another commission as a Lieutenant in the colonial Company of the Indies, and sailed in 1754 with his wife for Mauritius and then to Pondicherry, a French outpost in India. He died there in 1760.[11]