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Felix Bernard du Montier

Felix Bernard Du Montier, the son of Louis Bernard Du Montier and Perine Cornere, was born 24 May 1762 in St. Brienc, France. Through the years the spelling of the last name has varied and eventually the Dumontier was dropped and the family became known as Bernard.

According to some records, Felix Bernard du Montier was from a noble family and fell in love with Miss Victoire Burke (Bourg) who was not of noble birth. His family was opposed to his marriage to her so he supposedly resigned from the French naval service where lie had attained the rank of Captain, a rank just below Admiral. Abandoning all his old family traditions, associations and opportunities he came to Louisiana to live.

The register for the crew of the ship La Ville D'Archangel showed that Felix Bernard-Dumontier was on board as a "senior officer"--the second, first lieutenant. He was from St. Brienc, France and gave his age as 24. This ship was the sixth of the seven Acadian expeditions of 1785. It left France on 12 August 1785 and reached New Orleans 3 December 1785. Felix, as did several other crew members, deserted; most of the desertions being in Havana on 11 October 1785. The date of Felix's desertion was 18 October 1785, however the place was not specified.

Miss Victoire Bourg traveled on the same ship with her parents, Ambroise and Marie Modeste Molaison Bourg and her eight brothers and sisters. This family settled in Pointe Coupee parish.

Felix Bernard-Dumontier and Victoire Bourg, born 27 May 1764, in Cherbourg, France, were married on 23 January 1787 in St. Francis Church in Pointe Coupee. At that time Felix was supposedly living in East Feliciana parish where he engaged in the cultivation of cotton and eventually became a sugar planter. In 1788 he sold his plantation and moved to West Baton Rouge parish. They were the parents of six children: Louis Robert, Celeste, Onesifort, Emelie, Agricole and Felix Bernard-Dumontier.

Louis Robert Bernard-Dumontier was born 14 March 1789 and baptized 1 June 1789 at St. Francis of Pointe Coupee. He was married to Rosalie Visoso, daughter of Pierre Visoso and Marie Victoria Delate. They were the parents of four sons: Louis, Balthazar, Theodule and Gilbert. Louis died 6 August 1833, leaving Rosalie with four minor children. Balthazar, then only about 17 years old assumed charge of his father's plantation with the help of one of his uncles.

The following year the family moved to New Orleans and an article by Charles Patton Dimitry in the Sunday, 14 January 1894 issue of The Times Democrat tells of Balthazar being on a flatboat loaded with slaves descending the river from Indiana to New Orleans about the year 1835 and he had an opportunity to see, converse with and to eat a supper and a breakfast with Abraham Lincoln, both of which meals the future President of the United States had cooked.

Celeste Bernard-Dumontier was baptized on 24 May 1792 (date of birth unknown) at St. Francis of Pointe Coupee. She was married on 9 May 1807, at St. Joseph Church, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to Jacques Molaison, son of Jacques Molaison and Marie Duaron. Their children were: Victoria Euphemie (born 1809); Jacques Felix (born 1811); Celestine Delphine (born 1814); Agricole Prudent (born 1816); Jules Augustave (born 1820); Theodore Gil (born 1820); Theophile (born 1823); Louise (born 1826); Alexandre (born 1829); Leon (born 1832); and Numa (born 1836). Celeste died in New Orleans in 1838.

Onesifort Bernard-Dumontier was born 30 March 1795, and baptized 3 May 1795 at St. Joseph Church in Baton Rouge. On 8 June 1818 at St. Gabriel, Louisiana, he married Marie Irene Hebert, daughter of Jean Baptiste Hebert and Marie Leocadie Hebert. They had the following children: Onesiphore Jr.; Hermine Caroline (born 1820); Irene Melcerte (born 1825); Alphonse (born 1827); Felix Edgard (born 1828); Antoine Dulud (born 1832); Josephine Victoria (born 1836); and Marie Elise (born 1837). Irene Hebert died in July 1840 and her husband died 2 March 1866. At the time of his death the children were scattered, living in Texas, St. Helena parish and New Orleans except Onesiphore Jr., who was living in West Baton Rouge parish.

Emilie Louise Bernard-Dumontier was born 18 April 1799 and baptized on 22 May 1801. She married James R. Devall, son of Richard Devall and Idalitte Devall at St. Joseph Church, Baton Rouge on 10 April 1823. Their children were: James Richard (born 1826); and Elizabeth (born 1828). Emelie died in November 1883 and is buried in Magnolia Cemetery in Baton Rouge.

Agricole Bernard-Dumontier was born 29 March 1801 and baptized 22 May 1801 at St. Joseph Church, Baton Rouge. He was married twice, first in 1825 to Amaranthe Landry and second in 1838 to Zelie (Azelie) Allain. He died in West Baton Rouge in 1857. (See Agricole BernardDumontier family story).

Felix Bernard-Dumontier was born 15 August 1805 and baptized 23 January 1806 at St. Joseph Church in Baton Rouge. He married Josephine Seguin, daughter of Francois Seguin and Pelagie Bourk, on 20 January 1828 at St. Joseph Church. Their children were: Felix Louis (born 1830); Gustave (born 1832); Emilie (born 1833); Philip (born 1835); Marie Aspasie (born 1838); Zephaline (born 1841); Balthazar (born 1845); and Gilbert (born 1848). Felix died and was buried on 21 December 1852.

Felix Bernard-Dumontier's wife, Marie Victoire Bourg, died 10 August 1827 in West Baton Rouge parish. Petition for a succession was filed by her husband. Assets included a sugar plantation with a frontage of four arpents on the Mississippi River by 40 arpents depth, 13 (or 15) slaves, four horses with colts, a sugar house, dwelling, mill, pigeon house, 50 acres plant cane and 15 acres "ratoon", some cotton. The total assets were sold to J.A. Alexander.

When Felix died on 28 August 1843, he had only a few personal items included in his estate.

Iris Allain LeJeune

This text comes from West Baton Rouge Families Author: West Baton Rouge Genealogical Society.
Publisher: Fort Worth, Tex. : Landmark Pub., ©1999.
ISBN: 1928582079 9781928582076

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