TABARLET, Joseph Odell, businessman, public administrator, civic leader. Born, Marksville, La., November 4, 1900; son of Adolph Rueben Tabarlet and Evelyn Marie Laborde. Education: public schools; Southwestern Louisiana Institute. World War I service: U. S. Marine Corps in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Partner in bakery business with his father in Glenmora, La., and Jonesboro, La. Married, June 5, 1926, Mamman Mallette of Glenmora, daughter of Julius Gibson Mallette and Daisy Belle Johnson of Longleaf, La. Two children: Bobby Eugene (1927) and Leah Marye (1942). Active in Democratic party; ran unsuccessfully for legislature in Jackson Parish in 1935; first elected mayor of Jonesboro, 1938, and was re-elected, 1942; left mayor’s office in 1944 to serve as Home Service Representative for American Red Cross and later as Veteran’s Service Officer for Department of Veteran’s Affairs; appointed to finish term when Jonesboro mayor died in office in 1948; re-elected mayor in 1950. Member: Methodist church, Masonic Order, American Legion (40&8), and Lion’s Club. Died, May 27, 1951; interred Greenwood Cemetery, Pineville, La. B.E.T. Source: Author’s research.
TABARY, Louis-Blaise, actor, theatrical producer. Born, Aix-en-Province, France, May 4, 1803. Sailed for Saint-Domingue where he had relatives. Fled Cap Français, 1804, and removed to New Orleans. On July 13, 1805, submitted to the city council a proposal for a new theater. When this project failed, proposed, in May 1806, the building of a theater on Orleans Street. Construction began, October 6, 1806. Abandoned because of lack of funds, but completed by others, the building became the celebrated Théâtre d’Orléans. Destroyed by fire, 1816; rebuilt, 1819. Served as manager of the St. Peter Street Theater, the St. Philip Street Theater, and the Orleans Theater. Frequently performed at all three. Died, New Orleans, February 1, 1831. M.A. Sources: Henry A. Kmen, Music in New Orleans: The Formative Years, 1791-1841 (1966); René J. Le Gardeur, Jr., The First New Orleans Theatre, 1792-1803 (1963).
TALIAFERRO, James Govan, politician, jurist. Born, Amherst, Va., September 28, 1798; son of Zacharias Taliaferro and Sally Warwick. Family removed to Claiborne County, Miss., 1806, and to Catahoula Parish, La., 1815. Education: graduated from Transylvania College, Lexington, Ky., and practiced law briefly in that town. Married, May 1, 1819, Elizabeth M. B. Williamson of Lexington. Returned to Louisiana and established a law practice in Harrisonburg. Supported John Quincy Adams for president in 1824 and 1828. Appointed parish judge, 1834; served until election in 1840; left office, 1847. Member, Catahoula Parish Police Jury, 1859-1860. Owned and operated Harrisonburg Independent, 1856(?)-1861. Represented Catahoula Parish in the constitutional convention of 1852 and the secession convention, January 1861. Strong opponent of secession and refused to sign the ordinance. Two sons served in the Union Army during the Civil War. Appointed associate justice, Louisiana Supreme Court, July 1866, and served until death. Delegate to the constitutional convention of 1868. Died, Harrisonburg, October 13, 1876; interred Harrisonburg. A.W.B. Source: Wynona Gillmore Mills, “James Govan Taliaferro (1798-1876): Louisiana Unionist and Scalawag” (M.A. thesis, LSU, 1968).
TALIAFERRO, Robert Monroe, attorney, jurist. Born, Catahoula Parish (now La Salle Parish), La., September 13, 1882; son of James Govan Taliaferro, Jr., and Sophronie Elizabeth Kirby. Education: Louisiana State University, Tulane University Law School, graduated 1903. Married Emma Cecile Holloman of Harrisonburg, La. Children: Robert A. Taliaferro, Elizabeth Cecile Taliaferro (Barnes), Henry Arthur Taliaferro, John Surville Taliaferro, Julia Marie Taliaferro (Ward), Robert Monroe Taliaferro. Democrat. Became, 1925, district judge of Seventh Judicial District; judge of court of appeals for Second Circuit until 1951. Delegate to constitutional convention of 1921. First Baptist Church of Harrisonburg. Member, Free and Accepted Masons, Scottish Rite Masons, Shrine, Order of Eastern Star. Killed in an automobile accident the day of his retirement, December 15, 1951; interred Harrisonburg. J.G.T.*† Source: Edwin Adams Davis, The Story of Louisiana (1960).
TALLANT, Robert, author. Born, New Orleans, April 20, 1909; son of James Robb Tallant and Lucy Texada Magruder. Educated in local public schools, Warren Easton High School, graduated 1926. Did not marry. After taking jobs as an office clerk, a bank teller, and an advertising copywriter, he was named an editor in the Louisiana Writer’s Project. With Lyle Saxon, a long-time friend, and Edward Dryer, Tallant completed Gumbo Ya-Ya (1945), a collection of Louisiana folklore. During World War II, he worked for the Social Security Board. Between 1947 and 1954, wrote seven novels, four non-fiction monographs, and three children’s books. A master of New Orleans white dialects, both middle and lower class, which he presented in a lovingly satirical way in the novels, Mrs. Candy’s Saturday Night (1947), Love and Mrs. Candy (1953), and Mrs. Candy Strikes It Rich (1954). Gentle to mild (but never harsh) social satire appears in all his other novels. He comments on social pretentiousness in Angel in the Wardrobe (1948), Deep South small-town clanishness in A State in Mimosa (1950), the dreariness of a salesman’s life in Southern Territory (1951), and the shallowness of the French Quarter lifestyle in Mr. Preen’s Salon (1949). Tallant’s keen interest in the black underclass was reflected in his heavily researched and popularly written study of voodoo (1947). His papers (in the New Orleans Public Library) contain texts of numerous interviews with black men in all professions. Though he was very much an establishment man in his two non-fiction works, Mardi Gras (1948) and The Romantic New Orleanians (1950), one detects antagonism to Southern segregationism here and in certain passages in his novels. Other works include a book on famous New Orleans murders, Ready to Hang (1952), and three illustrated children’s books (on Lafitte, Evangeline, and the Louisiana Purchase). He wrote a number of unpublished short stories and two unpublished novels But he was most inspired in the “Candy” series, which in many ways anticipates Confederacy of Dunces. Tallant achieved a national reputation and was referred to by the New York Times as “novelist laureate” of New Orleans. Curiously the Times-Picayune said almost nothing when he died, April 1, 1957; interred Hope Mausoleum, New Orleans. G.P.B. Sources: Current Biography (1953, 1957); New York Times, obituary, April 3, 1957; papers, New Orleans Public Library, Louisiana Room.
TALLEY, John Benjamin, businessman. Born, Breaux Bridge, La., November 26, 1907; son of Euclide Talley and Alcide Callier. Education: local schools. Well-known highway contractor; pecan wholesale dealer; fish processor; ice manufacturer; crawfish producer; rice farmer; cattle, horse, and sheep raiser. Charter member, 1933, St. Martin Bank and Trust Co., president from 1968 until death. Service in U. S. Army, World War II. Formed J. B. Talley Construction Company, 1951. Talley Co. devised unique system of pumping fill material from the Mississippi River to complete construction of I-10 over the Atchafalaya Basin from Lafayette to Baton Rouge. Other construction-related companies include: Peltier Brothers; four hot-mix asphalt plants; Concrete Products, Inc.; dredging company. Died, February 9, 1976; interred St. Martin de Tours Mausoleum, St. Martinville. H.E.D. Sources: Louisiana Contractor, April 1976; St. Martinville Teche News, February 11, 1976; interview, Irene Melancon, secretary-treasurer and office manager, J. B. Talley Co., Inc.
TANNEHILL, R. L., politician. Born, Bibb County, Ala., March 11, 1848. Removed to Winn Parish, La., as child, ca. 1856. Sheriff, Winn Parish, 1874-1885. Married Maria E. Sellinger, 1876. Eight children. Owned cotton gin and sawmill. President, Winn Parish Farmer’s Union, 1886-1890. Treasurer, Louisiana Farmer’s Union, 1887-1890. Candidate, People’s Party, in gubernatorial election, 1892; ran last, carried four parishes. A.W.B. Sources: Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northwest Louisiana (1890); William I. Hair, Bourbonism and Agrarian Protest (1969).
TANNER, Jabez, owner of Walnut Grove Plantation and a leader in Campbellite movement of the 1840s. Born near Woodville, Miss., April 22, 1810; son of Robert Tanner, founder of Woodville, Miss., and Cheneyville, La. Married his first cousin, Esther Providence Bettison, June 6, 1833. Children: infant, (b. 1834, died at birth); Fredonia, (b. 1835); Erskine, (b. 1837); Linn, (b. 1838); Henry, (b. 1842); Irene Ethel, (b. 1844); Albert, (b. 1846); Graham, (b. 1848); Sidney, (b. 1850); Milton, (b. 1852); Cecil, (b. 1854); Lovell, (b. 1856); Estelle, (b. 1859. Died at his home near Cheneyville, December 26, 1863; interred Christian Cemetery. S.E. Sources: Walnut Grove/Jabez Tanner Collection of Wanda Lyles McGowen; Ezra Bennett Collection, private; George M. G. Stafford, Three Pioneer Families of Rapides Parish (1946); Pamphlet regarding religious controversy at Cheneyville, published in 1840s by Jabez Tanner.
TATE, Albert, jurist. Born, Opelousas, La., September 23, 1920; son of Albert and Adelaide (Therry) Tate. Education: Yale University, 1937-1938; LSU, 1938-1939; George Washington University, 1939-1941; degree, B.A.: Yale University Law School, 1941-1942; Yale University Law School, 1946-1947; degree, LLB (JD); LSU Law School, 1947-1948; degree, certification. Special agent, U. S. Army, Far East, 1942-1945. Married Claire Jeanmard, April 23, 1949. Children: Albert III, Emma Adelaide, George J., Michael F., Charles E. Admitted to Louisiana bar, 1948; practiced law in Ville Platte, 1948-1954; judge, Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeals, 1954-1960; presiding judge, Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeals, 1960-1970; associate justice, Louisiana Supreme Court, 1958, 1970-1979; judge, United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, 1979-1986; professor of Law, LSU Law School, 1967-1968; faculty chairman, Intermediate Appellate Judges Seminar, Institute of Judicial Administration, New York University, 1965-1986. Member: American Judicature Society, (director, 1969-1973; board of directors, Judicature, 1973-1976), 1948-1986; vice-chairman, Advisory Committee to Study the Administration of Appellate Courts, American Bar Foundation, 1970-1976; Advisory Council for Appellate Justice, Columbia University, 1971-1975; National Center for State Courts Advisory Council, representing A.B.A., 1971-1973; American Law Institute, 1967-1986; chairman, Judicial Planning Council for the State of Louisiana, 1976-1979; chairman, Rules Revision Committee, Louisiana Supreme Court; Louisiana Conference of Court of Appeals Judges, (vice-chairman, 1962-1967; chairman, 1967-1970), 1962-1970; Louisiana State Law Institute; Governor’s Committee on Rehabilitation and Corrections, 1970-1975; Judicial Council of Louisiana Supreme Court, 1960-1970; chairman, Louisiana Judicial Commission, 1968-1970; American Bar Association; Appellate Judges Conference on the Section of Judicial Administration, (chairman, 1970-1971; executive committee, 1966-1976; secretary, 1966-1967; vice-chairman, 1968; chairman-elect, 1969-1970); Criminal Justice Section, vice-chairman, Committee on Court Modernization, 1972-1974; chairman, Committee to Implement Standards of Criminal Justice, 1975-1976; chairman, Committee on Appellate Advocacy, 1975; chairman, Committee on the Use of Technology to Improve Appellate Efficiency, 1974; board of editors, Judges Journal, 1972-1975; Louisiana Bar Association, 1948-1986; delegate, Louisiana Constitutional Convention (chairman, style and drafting), 1973; American Legion; Veterans of Foreign Wars; Woodmen of the World; Delta Kappa Epsilon; Knights of Columbus; Rotary; Society of Bartolus; Louisiana Commission on Aging. Honors: Honorary mention, Order of the Coif, Louisiana Chapter, LSU Law School, 1976; Judicial Award of Merit, American Trial Lawyers Association, 1972. Publications: Authored sixty-three legal articles, published in various professional journals, as well as a legal textbook and a legal bibliography. Also authored 47 articles on various other topics. Died, March 27, 1986. C.P.B. Sources: Judges of the United States (2nd ed., 1983); Who’s Who in America, Vol. II (42d ed., 1982-1983); Almanac of the Federal Judiciary, Vol. II (1985).
TAYLOR, Gertrude Conrad, educator, editor. Born, New Iberia, La., January 13, 1914; daughter of Phillip A. Conrad (q.v.) and Marie Louise Bourgogne. Education: New Iberia schools; Southwestern Louisiana Institute (now University of Southwestern Louisiana), B.A., Ed. degree, 1933. Married Paul Elliot Taylor of Franklin, La., February 20, 1936. Children: Elliot Dwight (1936-1981), and Susan Caroline (b. 1942). Teacher, Iberia Parish School system, 1934-1976; member, English and Journalism departments, New Iberia High School. Upon retirement, wrote feature articles for local newspaper, 1976-1979. Named editor of Attakapas Gazette, journal of the Attakapas Historical Association, 1979; served in that capacity until death. Compiler of a series of land grant maps for the Acadiana area. Research assistant, Center for Louisiana Studies, USL, 1979-1987; contributor to the Dictionary of Louisiana Biography. Died, Breaux Bridge, La., December 15, 1987; interred Rosehill Cemetery, New Iberia. G.R.C. Sources: Author’s research.
TAYLOR, Jessie Livingston, civic leader, first African American librarian in the Lafayette Parish school system, and first African American woman to hold an administrative position with City of Lafayette. Born, New Iberia, La., October 15, 1931; daughter of Willie D. Livingsston and Eldora Segura Livingston. Married Lovell Taylor, May 24, 1954; widowed June 6, 1956. One son: Kermit R. Taylor. Graduated from Iberia Parish Training School, 1948; Southern University at Baton Rouge, 1952. Educational career: Served as school librarian in St. John the Baptist Parish, Union Parish, and Lafayette Parish, 1952-1973; director of human services, City of Lafayette, 1974-1990. Charter member of the St. Martin, Iberia, Lafayette Community Action Agency (SMILE) board of directors. Was a driving force in organizing Lafayette Parish’s Food Drive and Food Net and the Lafayette Mayor’s Commission on the Needs of Women, Faith House, Rape Crisis Center, and the Summer Day Camp for low-income youths. Developed and implemented the HUD-certified Counseling Services Program to serve low- and moderate-income families; administered federally funded health care program in conjunction with the Tulane University School of Nursing; obtained funding, located facility, supervised renovation of the building and grounds, and designed the initial program for the Lafayette Senior Center (The Greenhouse); spearheaded establishment of local Neighborhood Economic Development Corporation; established the Volunteer Services Program to promote the use of volunteers in the delivery of services and the Handicapped Employment Service Program; authored a grant proposal that resulted in the City of Lafayette’s selection to participate in ”Project Self-Sufficiency.” Taylor dedicated her life to the betterment of neighborhoods and community, the development of programs for the poor and disenfranchised and was mentor and role model to many African American youth in her community. Died July 30, 1992; interred Progressive Baptist Church Cemetery Breaux Bridge La. The Jessie Livingston Taylor Neighborhood Services Center was dedicated to her memory, January 17, 1993. S.C.B.
TAYLOR, Joe Gray, academic. Born, Tipton County, Tenn., February 14, 1920; son of Bassil Gray Taylor, a farmer and carpenter, and Lennie Fee Shinault. Education: Tipton public schools; Memphis State College, 1937-1939; taught in one-room school on Island 37 (Corona), Tenn., 1939-1941. Military service, 1942-1945; flew seventy missions as bombardier-navigator, Twelfth Bomb Group, Tenth Air Force in China-Burma-India theater. Achieved rank of first lieutenant; awarded Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal, and three battle stars. Married, April 18, 1945, Helen Eva Friday of North, S. C., daughter of Edward Brodie Friday, lawyer, and Ora Barksdale Coleman. Three children: Joe Gray, Jr. (b. 1952), Harriette Eva (b. 1955), Edward Coleman (b. 1959). Continued education: Memphis State University, B. S., 1947, M. A., 1948; Louisiana State University, Ph. D., 1951. Taught at Nicholls State Junior College, 1950-1953, before working as historian at Air Force Research Studies Institute, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, 1953-1957. Returned to teaching at Southeastern Louisiana State College, 1957-1958; Nicholls State College, 1958-1963; McNeese State University, 1963-1987. At McNeese, head, Department of History, 1968-1983; dean, College of Liberal Arts, 1983-1987. Aside from five monographs and four essays on Air Force history, Taylor’s most important work dealt with the South, particularly Louisiana. Published fifteen essays and eight books, including Negro Slavery in Louisiana (1963), Louisiana Reconstructed, 1863-1877 (1974; awarded both L. Kemper Williams Prize and Louisiana Literary Award), Louisiana: A Bicentennial History (1976), Eating, Drinking, and Visiting in the South (1982). Book reviews in twenty historical journals; thirty reviews in Louisiana History. Professional honors: president, Louisiana Historical Association, 1967; McNeese Distinguished Teaching Award, 1979. Award of Merit American Assocaiton for State and Local History, 1984; member, executive council, Southern Historical Association, 1985-1987; Louisiana Humanist of the Year, 1986. Member: Phi Kappa Phi, Phi Alpha Theta, American Historical Association, Organization of American Historians, Southern Historical Association, Louisiana Historical Association, American Association for State and Local History. Elder in Presbyterian Church. Died, Lake Charles, December 8, 1987; interred Robinson Cemetery near Gainsville, Tenn. D.S.* Sources: Helen Eva Taylor; Lake Charles American Press, December 9, 1987.
TAYLOR, Miles, planter, attorney, congressman. Born, Saratoga Springs, N.Y., July 16, 1805. Educated locally. Removed to Assumption Parish, La. Studied medicine, but never practiced. Studied law; admitted to the bar; began practice in Donaldsonville, La. A Democrat in politics; unsuccessful candidate for Congress, 1842; member, constitutional convention, 1845. Removed to New Orleans, 1847; practiced law. Appointed by governor to committee to revise Civil Code, Code of Procedures, and Statutes of Louisiana, 1849. Elected to Congress as Democrat, and served, 1855-1861; resigned, February 5, 1861, as result of Louisiana’s secession. Took no part in the Civil War. After war, served as chairman, Douglas National Executive Committee, 1869; resumed law practice, New Orleans. Active in sugar growers’ circles. Died, Saratoga Springs, N.Y., September 23, 1873; interment on plantation, near Belle Alliance, Assumption Parish, La. G.R.C. Sources: New Orleans Daily Picayune, September 25, 1873; Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949 (1950); Alcée Fortier, Louisiana . . . , 3 vols. (1914); William H. Adams, The Whig Party of Louisiana (1973); Arthur Freeman, “The Early Career of Pierre Soulé,” Louisiana Historical Quarterly, XXV (1942).
TAYLOR, Orlando Capitola Ward, journalist, educator, principal. Born, Huntsville, Tex., October 23, 1891; son of Rev. David F. Taylor and Capitola Somerville. Married Thelma Ruffin of New Orleans; one daughter, Doris Taylor Goins. Education: B. A. degree, Wiley College of Texas, 1913; graduate work at Columbia University and Xavier University, New Orleans. Teacher and later principal of several New Orleans Public Schools for forty-two years. First editor of the Louisiana Weekly (New Orleans), Louisiana largest black- owned and oriented newspaper, 1925-1927. Part-time reporter for several other black publications, including the Pittsburgh Courier, the Chicago Defender, Jet magazine, and the Associated Negro Press. Taylor also operated his own advertising agency for many years; hosted a weekly talk show on radio station WNOE, 1946-68; produced and directed several local television programs. During World War II Taylor was a liaison officer and director of the Negro Division of the New Orleans Civil Defense League. Served as deputy administrator of war bond sales in Louisiana. Organizer and director of the New Orleans Urban League. Taylor was active in several Masonic organizations, as well as in the Bunch and Original Illinois Social Clubs. Published A Pictorial Survey of the Negro in New Orleans (1923) and The New Orleans Negro (1950), a pictorial post card folder. Died, New Orleans, September 29, 1979; interred, Mount Olivet Cemetery, New Orleans, La. J.D.W. Sources: New Orleans Times-Picayune, October 1, 1979; G. James Fleming and Christian E. Burckel, eds., Who’s Who in Colored America, 7th edition (1950).
TAYLOR, Richard, planter, soldier. Born, Springfields Plantation near Louisville, Ky., January 27, 1826; son of Zachary Taylor (q.v.) and Margaret Smith. Education; frontier schools; two years in Scotland and France; preparatory school, Lancaster, Mass.; entered Harvard but transferred, 1843, to Yale University; graduated 1845. Joined father briefly in Mexico, but because of ill health returned to New Orleans. Operated Cypress Grove Plantation, Jefferson County, Miss., 1848-1850, and Fashion Plantation, St. Charles Parish, La., 1850-1861. Married, February, 1851, Myrthe Louise Bringier. Children: Louise, Betty, Zachary, Richard, and Myrthe (both boys died in childhood, 1863). Active in Whig, Know-Nothing, and Democratic parties. Served in state senate, 1856-1860; delegate, Democratic National Convention, Baltimore, Md., and Richmond, Va., 1860. As state legislator, introduced bill to call a convention to consider secession; elected member of secession convention, voted for secession. Volunteer aide to Gen. Braxton Bragg (q.v.) at Pensacola, Fla., May 1861. Elected colonel, Ninth Louisiana Infantry Regiment, July 7, 1861, promoted to rank of brigadier general, October 21, 1861. Commanded a brigade under Gen. Stonewall Jackson in the Shenandoah Valley and Seven Days’ campaigns in Virginia, 1862. Promoted to rank of major general and assigned command of the District of Western Louisiana, July 28, 1862. His army driven out of South Louisiana by Union Army under Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks (q.v.) in April 1863. Returned to South Louisiana in May and June 1863; defeated enemy force at Brashear City, June 23, and another force at Koch’s Plantation near Donaldsonville, July 13. His army foiled an attempted invasion of South Louisiana in the fall of 1863. Defeated Union Army of General Banks in the Red River Campaign of 1864. Promoted to rank of lieutenant general, May 16, 1864, and assigned command of the Department of Alabama, Mississippi and East Louisiana, August 15, 1864. Surrendered the last Confederate army in the field east of the Mississippi River at Citronelle, Ala., May 8, 1865. Established residence in New Orleans, 1865. Conferred with Presidents Andrew Johnson, Richard (q.v.), and Ulysses S. Grant concerning Reconstruction policies in the South and treatment of former Confederate government officials. Involved with New Basin Canal venture in New Orleans and acted as agent for American businessmen on trips to Europe in 1873 and 1874. Member: Boston Club; Metairie Association; George Peabody Fund Trustees. Removed to Winchester, Va., 1875. Wrote his memoirs, published as Destruction and Reconstruction. Died, New York City, April 12, 1879; interred, Metairie Cemetery, New Orleans. A.W.B. Sources: Richard Taylor, Destruction and Reconstruction (1879); Arthur W. Bergeron, Jr., “General Richard Taylor: A Study in Command” (M.A. thesis, LSU, 1972); Jackson Beauregard Davis, “The Life of Richard Taylor,” Louisiana Historical Quarterly, XXIV (1941).
TAYLOR, Zachary, soldier, president of the United States. Born, Barboursville, Va., November 24, 1784; son of Richard Taylor and Sarah Strother. Spent early life in Kentucky. Educated by tutors and practical experience. In 1808, appointed first lieutenant in the United States Army, Seventh Infantry. 1809, sent to Louisiana for the first time. Married Margaret Mackall Smith, June 21, 1810. Children: one son, Richard (q.v.), and five daughters. Daughter, Sarah Knox, married Jefferson Davis (q.v.). 1810, promoted to rank of captain; 1814 promoted to rank of major. 1812, defended Fort Harrison in Indian Territory from Tecumseh. 1815, discharged from army at end of War of 1812. 1816, rejoined Army as a major in Third Infantry. For next ten years was in Louisiana off and on. 1832, served in Wisconsin in Black Hawk War; promoted to rank of colonel. 1837, sent to Florida and helped defeat Seminole Indians. Promoted to rank of brigadier general. 1840 sent to Baton Rouge to command military department covering the Southwest. Made Baton Rouge a permanent home. Mrs. Taylor helped establish Episcopal chapel, which became St. James Church. 1846, sent to Texas. Defeated Mexican forces in battles of Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma. Defeated Santa Anna in Battle of Buena Vista. 1848, elected president of the United States. Inaugurated March 5, 1849. Died, July 9, 1850; interred family cemetery near Louisville, Ky. M.C.R. Sources: World Book Encyclopedia, (1968), XVIII; Silas Bent McKinley and Silas Bent, Old Rough and Ready: The Life and Times of Zachary Taylor (1946).
TERRISSE DE TERNAN, soldier, administrator. Born in France before 1700. Served as junior officer in French garrison on Dauphin Island before founding of New Orleans; partisan of La Mothe Cadillac (q.v.); involved in a duel in 1716, wounding Benoist de St. Clair. Business associate of Michel Rossard, chief clerk of the provincial council, 1720s. Posted to Illinois country, 1727; served as garde de magasin at Fort de Chartres, 1727-1732; engaged in Illinois trade in partnership with Rossard; known for his audacity, drinking, and sharp tongue. Departed Louisiana for France 1733, never to return. Place and date of death unknown. C.J.E. Sources: Heloise H. Cruzat, trans., “Letters of Sieur Terrisse de Ternan,” Louisiana Historical Quarterly, III (1920); Carl J. Ekberg, “Terrisse de Ternan: Epistoler and Soldier,” Louisiana History, XXIII (1982).
TESSIER, George Dean, Sr., politician. Born, New Orleans, May 7, 1912; son of Charles Andrew Tessier, Jr., and Ruth Jurgens. Married Althea Lennox, September 19, 1940; children: George Dean, Jr. (b. 1943) and Mark Andrew Atherton (b. 1947). Education: attended New Orleans public elementary schools; Woodberry Forest Preparatory School of Orange, Va.; Tulane University; and Tulane University Law School, 1935-1936; president of his freshman law school class; forced by family financial difficulties to drop out of law school in 1936. Athletic career: all-state football player (guard) at Woodberry Forest Preparatory School, 1931, 1933, and 1934; Southern Amateur Athletic Union (A.A.U.) heavyweight wrestling champion, 1932; honorable mention All-American football player, 1934; lettered in football, wrestling, and boxing at Tulane University; participated in the inaugural Sugar Bowl game. Notary and insurance solicitor, Gillis-Winkler Insurzance Agency, 1936-ca. 1941. Military service: served briefly as chief boatswain’s mate, United States Coast Guard; subsequently transferred to the United States Navy with the rank of ensign; served in the Navy, 1942-1945; one year overseas; discharged with the rank of first lieutenant, 1945. Political career: state representative from New Orleans’ 14th Ward, 1948-1964; a vocal opponent of Governor Earl K. Long’s populist legislative programs; selected by the Capital Correspondents’ Association as Louisiana’s outstanding state representative, 1958. President, Reserve Officers of the Naval Services, 1945, and the Military Order of the World Wars. Vice president (two terms), Navy League. Organizer and first president, New Orleans chapter of the Serra Club. Fourth degree Knight of Columbus. Volunteer worker for the United Way of New Orleans. Member, Southern Yacht Club, Suburban Rod and Gun Club, and the Pickwick Club. Died, New Orleans, September 27, 1967; interred, Metairie Cemetery. C.A.B. Sources: New Orleans Times-Picayune, September 29, 1967; J. F. Hyer, ed., The Story of Louisiana (1960), 2:141.
TESTUT, Charles, physician, journalist, author. Born, Auxerre, France, ca. 1819. Left France when about 20 years old. In New York in 1839, worked on a short-lived newspaper L’Indicateur. Went to Guadeloupe in time to witness the February 8, 1843, catastrophic earthquake. In New Orleans, March 1843, seeking relief for the victims. In 1849, after practicing medicine for some years in St. Martinville and Lafayette, returned to New Orleans and bought a weekly La Chronique. In 1850, tried to launch a bilingual newspaper at Mobile, Ala., L’Alabama Courrier, returned to New Orleans and bought La Semaine de la Nouvelle Orléans. From 1858 to 1871, resided in New York where he wrote an anti-abolitionist novel, Le Vieux Salomon. Back in New Orleans, founded a short-lived periodical, April-September, 1871,L’Equité, in which he vehemently supported the Paris commune. Tried again twice to start newspapers, in 1873 La Lanterne, in 1880, Le Journal des Familles. His publications include poetry: Les Echos (1849), Fleurs d’Eté (1851), L’Album poétique (1805); novels: St. Denis (1849), Calisto (1849), Le Vieux Salomon … (1872), Les Aventures de deux âmes (1871), et Les Filles de Monte-Cristo (1876); and criticism: Portraits littéraires de la Nouvelle Orléans (1850). Died, July 1, 1892, Charity Hospital, New Orleans, having spent his last years in dire poverty. M.A. Sources: Marie-Louise Lagarde, “Charles Testut: Critic, Journalist, and Literary Critic” (M.A. thesis, Tulane University, 1948); Edouard Larocque Tinker, Les Ecrits de langue française en Louisiane au XIXe siècle (1932).
TETTS, John A., farmer, civic leader. Born, South Carolina, 1847. Left school age 15 and worked in grocery store. Served in Confederate Army. Farmer after Civil War. Removed to Louisiana about 1875. Member of Grange. Aided in formation Lincoln Parish Farmer’s Club, 1881, and served as secretary. Helped organize Louisiana Farmer’s Union, 1886; called “founder of the Union in Louisiana.” Organized Farmer’s Alliance, 1887. Editor Alexandria Farmer’s Vidette, 1890-1892, and Robeline Battle Flag, 1892-1896. Became Populist 1892; secretary of Louisiana People’s party, 1896. Unsuccessful candidate for legislature, Natchitoches Parish, 1896. Removed to Sabine Parish, 1898; published Many Sabine Free State. Joined Republican party after demise of Populist Party. Book seller in Many, 1902. A.W.B. Sources: William I Hair, Bourbonism and Agrarian Protest (1969); Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northwest Louisiana (1890).
TEURLINGS, William J., clergyman, vicar general, prothonotary apostolic. Born January 27, 1872, in Tilburg, Holland. After preparatory studies in his native land, he proceeded to the American College, Louvain, Belgium. Ordained June 29, 1894, for the Diocese of Boisledne, Holland. Approximately one year before his ordination, the Archbishop Francis Janssens (q.v.) of New Orleans visited Holland and made known the need for missionaries in his archdiocese. Teurlings readily consented to serve in Louisiana. Incardinated into the Archdiocese of New Orleans, 1895. In February, 1895, Teurlings began his ministry as assistant pastor of St. Mary Magdalen Catholic Church, Abbeville, La., February 1895. Nine months later, he was appointed pastor of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Creole, La. Named pastor of Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Washington, La., 1898. Transferred to Lafayette, La., as pastor of St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church, 1906. Responded to the wishes of Lafayette’s African-American community by having St. Paul’s Church built in 1912. Named honorary canon of the St. John the Evangelist Cathedral after the creation of the Diocese of Lafayette in 1918. Remained at St. John’s until 1929. Upon the completion of St. Genevieve Catholic Church in Lafayette in 1912, Teurlings was made a domestic prelate with the title right reverend monsignor. Pastor of St. Genevieve’s Catholic Church, 1929-1954. Named vicar general of the Diocese of Lafayette and appointed protonotary apostolic, 1948. Known as the “builder of churches,” he was responsible for construction of St. John the Evangelist Cathedral, St. Genevieve Catholic Church, St. Patrick Catholic Church, and St. Leo Catholic Church in Lafayette Parish. Teurlings was also responsible for construction of Cathedral School and St. Genevieve School and for recruiting the Christian Brothers and the Sisters of Divine Providence respectively to staff the parochial schools. Died at Lafayette, December 26, 1957; interred at Lafayette Calvary Cemetery. A.J.M. Sources: “150th Anniversary of St. John Parish,” Southwest Louisiana Register, April 22, 1971; Catholic Action of the South, December 18, 1947; Diocese of Lafayette Archives; Southwest Louisiana Register, January 3, 1958.
TEUTSCH, Adolph, merchant. Born, Venningen, Rhein-pfalz, Germany, August 7, 1850. Joined brother Aaron as post-bellum “furnishing” merchant; established own business in Upper St. Francisville, 1883. Married Justine Meyer, born Alsace, 1883. Chairman, building committee, Temple Sinai, 1893. Died, March 13, 1903. Widow married nephew, Rudolph. Born, Venningen, September 20, 1865. Arrived St. Francisville as a clerk July 15, 1883. Became prominent in Jewish and Masonic organizations and a town alderman, 1903-1904. Died, December 5, 1949; all interred Hebrew Rest Cemetery, St. Francisville. E.K.D. Sources: True Democrat, Silver Anniversary Edition, 1917; St. Francisville Democrat, June 23, 1944; West Feliciana parish records; records, Hebrew Rest Cemetery.
TEXADA, Lewis Emmanuel, planter, politician. Born, Bayou Rapides, Rapides Parish, La., August 2, 1819; son of John Augustin Texada and Lucy Welsh. Education: University of Virginia Law School, Charlottesville. Married (1), August 2, 1840, Ann Bernard Lyon of Charlottesville, Va. Married (2), December 12, 1850, Pleasance Hunter, daughter of Pleasant Henderson Hunter and Martha Kitchen. Seven children lived to adulthood: Lucy (b. 1851), Lewis Manuel (b. 1853), Willie Frank (b. 1855), John Augustin (b. 1857), Susan Pleasance (b. 1861), Maggie Josephine (b. 1864), Mary Ellen (b. 1867). Served in both houses of legislature, first elected as Whig, 1844; candidate for lieutenant governor, 1856; delegate to state secession convention, January 1861. Elected to state legislature as Democrat, 1872. Died, Castile Plantation, Bayou Rapides, August 23, 1884; interred Castile Cemetery, Rapides Parish. A.P.H.C. Sources: Bible of Lewis E. Texada; Walter Marvin Hunter, The Hunters of Bedford County, Virginia (1975).
TEYGART, Patrick, surveyor, educator; mechanic. Employed by Spain to mark boundary between Mississippi Territory and Spanish West Florida along 31st degree of latitude, 1798; recommended by William Dunbar (q.v.) as deputy surveyor, 1799; inventor of wooden sight for surveying compass which earned praise from Andrew Ellicott; land grant surveyor under V. S. Pintado, New Feliciana, 1799-1805. Died, Thompson’s Creek, West Feliciana, 1805. E.K.D. Sources: Jack D. L. Holmes, Gayoso: The Life of a Spanish Governor in the Mississippi Valley, 1789-1799 (1965); American State Papers; West Feliciana Parish Records.
THEARD, George Henry, jurist. Born, New Orleans, May 17, 1857; son of Paul Emile Théard and Athénais Pilié. Brother of Charles, Alfred, Sidney, Emma, and Mathilde Théard. Education: Jesuits College, New Orleans; Spring Hill College, Mobile, B. A. and M. A. degrees; Tulane, law degree, 1878; honorary LL.D., Loyola University, New Orleans. Joined firm of P. E. Théard and Sons. Appointed judge of Division E, Civil District Court, 1892, elected thereafter, serving in this capacity until year of death. Died, New Orleans, February 6, 1920. G.R.C. Sources: Louisiana Historical Quarterly, V (1922); New Orleans Times-Picayune, February 7, 1920.
THEARD, Thomas, publisher, politician, and essayist. Born, Assumption Parish, La., October 31, 1804; son of René-Nicolas Théard and Marie Rose Robert. Education: College of Sainte-Foi, Bordeaux, France. Married (1) Clémance Delaville. Children: Paul Emile, Joseph Osacar, James Camille, and Claire Antoinette Laure. Married (2) Clémentine Laroque-Turgeau, a New Orleanian. Children: Arthur David Aloysius, Charles Cyrille, and Septime Lucien Théard. Removed to New Orleans, 1827. Editor-in-chief of L’Abeille de la Nouvelle-Orléans, 1829-1835; editor and publisher, Courrier de la Louisiane, 1849-1853. Served, twelve years, as secretary to mayor of New Orleans; was superintendent of public schools in the First Municipality; served on New Orleans city council and in state legislature; city comptroller, 1856-1859. Retired from public life to write historical, philosophical, and scientific articles. Died, New Orleans, September 22, 1873. G.R.C. Source: L’Abeille de la Nouvelle-Orléans, September 23, 1873.
THERIOT, Roy, attorney, politician. Born, Erath, La., June 26, 1914; son of Lastie Theriot and Emerite Barras. Education: Erath public schools; University of Southwestern Louisiana; Tulane University. Began law practice June 7, 1939; served as mayor of Abbeville, 1954-1960. Organized Abbeville Dairy Festival, September 1949; elected state comptroller, 1960; served until death. Married, June 7, 1947, Helen Roberts. Children: Barbara Ellen, (b. 1949), Roy R, Jr. (b. 1952), Samuel (b. 1954). Organized Acadian Boucherie Breakfast, January 1960, to preserve Acadian culture. Died, April 19, 1973; interred St. Mary Magdalen Mausoleum, Abbeville, La. M.A.F. Sources: 1957 Centennial edition, Abbeville Meridional; New Orleans Times-Picayune, December 5, 1959; interview with Helen Roberts Theriot, September 9, 1982.
THERIOT, Valsin Joseph, businessman, civic leader. Born, Breaux Bridge, La., May 9, 1900; son of Charles Theriot and Sidonie LeBlanc. Education: local schools. First World War service: attached to Company H; Liaison agent for Twenty-eighth U. S. Infantry and French Fifth Group of Tanks, April 4, 1917; wounded at Cantigny, May 28, 1918; commended for bravery by General Pétain; awarded Croix de Guerre; discharged, September 27, 1919. Married, October 15, 1921, Celine Hanes. Children: Vance J. Theriot (b. 1922), and Lois (b. 1925). Entered mercantile trade in 1922. Member, St. Bernard Catholic Church, Ushers’ Society, Holy Name Society; St. Martin Parish School Board, 1940-1959; St. Martin Parish Red Cross; Young Men’s Business Club; president, St. Martin Parish School Board, 1944-1959; chairman, St. Martin Parish Red Cross; commander, American Legion Post #133; president, Y.M.B.C.; Outstanding Citizen Award, 1948; U. S. Treasury Department Award, 1959; chairman, St. Martin Parish Saving Bonds Program. Died, Breaux Bridge, April 23, 1959; interred St. Bernard Parish Mausoleum. J.C. Sources: Family papers; author’s research; Lafayette Daily Advertiser, April 24, 1959; St. Martinville Teche News, April 30, 1959.
THIBODAUX, Bannon Goforth, planter, politician, congressman. Born, St. Bridget Plantation near Thibodaux, La., December 22, 1812; son of Henry Schuyler Thibodaux (q.v.) of New York and Brigitte Bellanger. Educated locally; studied law in Hagerstown, Md. Admitted to bar and practiced law in Lafourche and Terrebonne parishes. Married, December 28, 1840, Justine Aubert, daughter of Pierre Aubert and Marguerite Barras. Children: Cecilia, Ida, Aubane, Leusden, Michel, Mary, Amelia, Charles, Arthur, Franklin, Bannon, and Gaston. Member, constitutional conventions of 1845 and 1852. Elected as a Whig to Congress, served, 1845-1849. Resumed law practice in Lafourche and Terrebonne parishes; also involved in sugar production and manufacture. Died, Terrebonne Parish, La., March 5, 1866. G.R.C. Sources: Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949 (1950); Donald J. Hebert, comp., South Louisiana Records: Church and Civil Records of Lafourche-Terrebonne, I; IV.
THIBODAUX, Henry Schuyler, governor. Born, Albany, New York, 1769; son of Alexis Thibodaux, a French Canadian, and Anna Blanchard Thibodaux. Orphaned early in life and raised in the family of Gen. Philip Schuyler. Educated in Scotland, from which he immigrated to Louisiana shortly after 1790. Married (1), May 7, 1793, Félicité Bonvillain of the First Acadian Coast, now St. James Parish. Children: Leander Bannon, Aubin Bannon, and Eugénie. Married (2), May 20, 1800, Bridgette Bellanger. Children: Emélie, Henry Michel, Elmia, Henry Claiborne, and Bannon Goforth (q.v.). Shortly after arrival in Louisiana, removed to the Bayou Lafourche district of the Spanish colony, where, despite his proud acceptance of identification as a “poor shoemaker,” he was soon recognized as the dominant leader of what were to become the parishes of Terrebonne, Assumption, and Lafourche under American control after 1803. Political career: member of the legislature, Territory of Orleans, 1805; justice of the peace, Lafourche County, 1808; delegate to the state constitutional convention of 1812; state senator, 1812-1824, president of the senate, 1824; succeeded Thomas B. Robertson (q.v.) as governor of Louisiana, serving as chief executive, November-December 1824. Died, Bayou Terrebonne, October 24, 1847, of a liver ailment; interred St. Bridget’s Church Cemetery, Shriever, La. J.G.T. Source: Author’s research.
THIBODEAUX, Gaston, born Joseph Gaston; farmer, politician. Born, St. Martin Parish, La., December 4, 1885; son of Benjamin Thibodeaux and Blanche Babin, daughter of Charles Sidney Babin and Leomire Leblanc. Married Julie Anne Champagne, February 5, 1908. Children: Chester, Stafford, Howard, and Norma. Member: St. Martin Parish Police Jury; the Knights of Columbus; serving as grand knight, the Woodmen of the World, and St. Bernard Catholic Church. An active farmer all of his life. During his thirteen years in the state house of representatives, 1920-1933, he served on the following house committees: Game, Fish, and Oysters (chairman); Public Education; State Department, Bonded and Otherwise (chairman); Municipal Corporations; Charitable Institutions; Appropriations; Public Roads Highways; Agriculture (vice-chair); Conservation of Natural Resources. During his tenure he was particularly active in legislative matters involving highway and levee matters. Died, November 1933. J.T.K. Sources: Attakapas Gazette, XX (1985); Lafayette Daily Advertiser, November 20, 1933; Louisiana House of Representatives, Journal, 1920-1933; St. Martinville News Weekly (now Teche News), November 25, 1933; New Orleans Times-Picayune, November 20, 1933.
THIBODEAUX, Sophie Girard, educator. Born, Breaux Bridge, La., November 27, 1892; daughter of Charles O. Girard and Elisa Forette. Education: local schools; State Normal College (now Northwestern State University), teacher’s certificate; University of Southwestern Louisiana, B. A. Taught in schools of St. Martin Parish, La., for 50 years, most of the time in schools of Breaux Bridge. Member, St. Bernard Catholic Church; Ladies Altar Society; Catholic Daughters of America; History Committee, St. Martin Parish Economic Survey; national, state, and local professional organizations. Recipient of Les Palmes Académiques, grade of Officier, 1955. Died, February 6, 1977; interred St. Bernard Catholic Cemetery, Breaux Bridge. J.C. Sources: Family papers; Bulletin: St. Martin Parish Economic Survey, 1950; St. Martinville Teche News, February 10, 1977; taped interview, May 19, 1975, St. Martin Parish Library; St. Bernard Catholic Church sacramental records.
THERIOT, Dunice Paul “Due,” Cajun musician. Born at Henderson, La., December 23, 1937; son of Sidney Theriot and Aurelia Montet. Married Jeanette Guidry, September 5, 1956; children: Debbie, Emilean, Dennis, Wanda, and Dunice, Jr. Started playing music at the age of seven; learned to play the Cajun accordion two years later. Began playing music professionally at sixteen years of age. Initially appeared with his father’s band. Played accordion, harmonica, piano, drums, and fiddle. Theriot was also a vocalist and songwriter. Organized his own band in 1953. Became a professional fisherman in 1955. Worked with notable Cajun artists Rufus Thibodeaux and Warren Storm. Recorded on thirty-two 45 rpm records and two albums on the Sportsman, Swallow, Lanor, and Flyright labels between 1963 and 1990. One of his recordings was selected by KRVS (National Public Radio affiliate at the University of Southwestern Louisiana) as the “Best Cajun Song” of 1984-85. Received the Golden Career Award from the Breaux Bridge Historical Society, 1985. Died at Henderson, La., March 27, 1990; interred in St. Bernard Cemetery, Breaux Bridge, La. J.H.B. Sources: Interview with Mrs. Dunice Theriot; Crowley Post Herald, October 9, 1970; KRVS-USL archives.
THIBODEAUX, Ben H., economist and diplomat. Born, Breaux Bridge, La., December 13, 1903; son of Gilbert Thibodeaux and Haydee Patin Thibodeaux. Married Claire Roy in 1935; no children. Education: B.S., Louisiana State University, 1925; M.S., Iowa State College, 1925; Ph. D., Harvard University, 1947. Career: instructor of Economics at Louisiana State University; economist for the United States Department of Agriculture, 1929-39; engaged in economic studies for United States government in Bolivia and the Middle East, 1940-43. Served in the United States Army, 1944-45, rising to rank of colonel. Entered United States Foreign Service; appointed agricultural attaché in the foreign service auxiliary, 1946. Assigned to Paris, where he eventually became first secretary and counselor in Paris, France, 1946-48; served under Ambassador Jefferson Caffery (q.v.). Reassigned to the Economic Cooperative Administration (Marshall Plan), where he was involved in supervising implementation in sixteen countries, 1948-50; counselor of embassy and director of the Economic Division in Vienna and deputy chief of Marshall Plan mission to Austria, 1950-53; counselor for Economic Affairs in the United States embassy in Ottawa, Canada, 1954. Assigned to the State Department as director of the Office of Economic Defense and Trade Policy, 1954; director, International Trade and Resources, 1955-57. Last assignment was minister of Economic Affairs and counsel general in Tokyo and director of the United States Operations Mission, Japan, 1957-60. Retired in 1960; settled in the Opelousas, La., area. Died August 21, 1996; interred, St. Charles Catholic Church Mausoleum, Grand Coteau, La. I.B.T. Sources: Biographical Register of State Department Foreign Service List, 1960; obituary, Lafayette Daily Advertiser, August 22, 1996.
Thierry, Camille, poet. Born, New Orleans, October 14, 1814; son of Jean-Baptiste Thierry, editor of Le Courrier de la Louisiane, from Paris, France, and a New Orleans octoroon, Phélise Lahogue, from Saint-Domingue, mother of Michel Séligny (q.v.). Father died March 5, 1815. Inherited a small fortune from his mother when she died January 11, 1853. Profession is listed as shoemaker in the city directories from 1842 to 1855. Publications: poetry: “Les Idées” in Album Littéraire (1843); fourteen poems in Les Cenelles (1845); “Remerciements” in Charles Testut’s (q.v.) Fleurs d’été (1851). Numerous poems have been published in New Orleans newspapers: La Chronique, in 1848, L’Orléanais in 1848, 1850 and 1851,” “Tellius Saint Céran” in Le Courrier de la Louisiana (1851). Left for France in 1855, resided in Bordeaux; published Les Vagabondes: Poésies Américaines (1874), collection of most of his poetry. Returned briefly to New Orleans when his agents (Lafitte, Dufilho et Cie of New Orleans) went bankrupt, but still had an estate of $10,000 in 1874. Died, Bordeaux, France, April 22, 1875. Considered by French critics as the most versatile Louisiana poet of the period. Joseph Colastin Rousseau published a short study of Thierry in his serialized “Souvenir de la Louisiane” (L’Union, May 30, 1863), and Paul Trévigne (q.v.) included Thierry in “Louisiana Centennial Tribute to the Negro,” published in the Weekly Louisiana, December 25, 1875. The Comptes Rendus de l’Athénée Louisianais of January 1878 republished “L’amante du Corsaire” and “Mariquita La Calentura” with a brief introduction by Armand Mercier (q.v.). F.C.A. Sources: Rodophe Lucien Desdunes, Our People and our History, trans. Dorothea Olga McCants (1973); Archives Municipales de Bordeaux; Auguste Viatte, Histoire littéraire de l’Amérique française (1950). Auguste Viatte, “Complément à la Bibliographie de Tinker.” Revue de Louisiane. Lousiana Review, (1974); Archdiocese of New Orleans Sacramental Record, vol. 11, 1813-1815 (1996); research graciously shared by Michel Favre; author’s personal research.
THIERRY, Huey Peter “Cookie,” singer, songwriter, and musician. Born, Roanoke, Jefferson Davis Parish, La., August 16, 1936. Thierry was lead singer of renowned Lake Charles “swamp pop” group Cookie and the Cupcakes, originally known as the Boogie Ramblers. A bilingual black Creole, Thierry joined the group around 1952, at first merely serving as the group’s stagehand. He eventually became its charismatic lead vocalist, and his powerful singing appears prominently in classic recordings like “Got You On My Mind,” “I’m Twisted,” “Belinda,” and the archetypal swamp pop ballad, “Mathilda,” issued in 1958 on the Lyric label of Lake Charles. Although “Mathilda” climbed only as high as number forty-seven in Billboard (the group’s highest chart ranking), the song had an enormous impact on South Louisiana’s music scene. It quickly became the model for numerous other swamp pop ballads, and helped to make the swamp pop sound an important regional sub-genre of rhythm and blues music. Racial trouble plagued Thierry in the late 1950s and early 1960s; in 1965 he departed his homeland for south-central Los Angeles. There he disappeared, and rumors abounded regarding his fate: one held that he died on skid row, another that a tragic auto accident left him confined to a wheelchair. Thierry re-emerged in 1993, making a comeback with the reorganized Cupcakes, which included several early members, including Ernest Jacobs, Shelton Dunaway, Marshall LeDée, and Little Alfred. Thereafter he made several notable appearances, including the Louisiana Folklife Festival, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Festival International de Louisiane in Lafayette, and the Blues Estafette in Utrecht, Holland. He also provided vocals on a 1995 re-recording of “Mathilda” for the Boogie Kings’ Swamp Boogie Blues album. Died, Lake Charles, La., September 23, 1997. His demise marked the first loss of a major swamp pop musician since the death of singer/songwriter Jimmy Donley in 1963. S.K.B. Sources: Shane K. Bernard, “Huey ‘Cookie’ Thierry,” in Swamp Pop: Cajun and Creole Rhythm and Blues (1996); Bernard, interview with Huey “Cookie” Thierry, in OffBeat (July and August 1996); John Broven, South to Louisiana: Music of the Cajun Bayous (1983); Lafayette Daily Advertiser, September 25, 1997.
THOMAS, Allen, politician, soldier, diplomat. Born, Howard County, Md., December 14, 1830. Education: Princeton University, graduated 1850. Practiced law in Howard County, Md. Planter in St. Landry Parish, La. Organized an infantry battalion in that parish when the Civil War began. Elected colonel, Twenty-ninth Louisiana Infantry Regiment, May 3, 1862. Fought in various battles near Vicksburg, Miss., and captured there July 4, 1863. Promoted to rank of brigadier general, February 4, 1864, and given command of a brigade in the Trans-Mississippi Department. Succeeded to command of Gen. Camille J. Polignac’s infantry division in February 1865. Disbanded his command in May 1865. After the war resumed his life as a planter. Professor of Agriculture and member, board of supervisors, Louisiana State University. Served as coiner of the United States Mint in New Orleans. United States consul at La Guarira. Envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to Venezuela. Lived in Florida, 1889-1907. Died, Waveland, Miss., December 3, 1907; interred Donaldsonville, La. A.W.B. Sources: Ezra J. Warner, Generals in Gray (1959); Mark M. Boatner III, The Civil War Dictionary (1959); Clement A. Evans, Confederate Military History, 13 vols. (1899).
THOMAS, Anna T. L., pioneer female physician. Immigrated with her parents from Prussia to New Orleans as a child. Married Dr. John W. Thomas. Children: a son and two daughters. Career: Studied medicine in 1875 under Dr. C. B. White, who served at one time as president of Louisiana Board of Health; in 1879 moved to Canada, where she continued her studies; enrolled from 1883-85 at Women’s Medical College in Chicago; during this period also studied at Physicians’ and Surgeons’ Medical College (also in Chicago) and Chicago Polyclinic; in 1886 she graduate from Hahnemann Homeopathic College of Chicago and returned to New Orleans to establish a practice out of her home on Jackson Avenue; specialized in treatment of women and children; was a member of several medical associations. S.K.B. Sources: Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Louisiana (1892; reprint ed., 1975); Soard’s New Orleans Directory (1887); see also Shane K. Bernard, “A Biographical Sketch: T. L. Thomas,” Louisiana History 34 (1993).
THOMAS, Blanche, vocalist blues singer. Born, New Orleans, 1924. Began her singing career at the old Tick Tock Club. Popular singer in many Bourbon Street clubs, sang with Louis Armstrong (q.v.), Al Hirt, Pete Fountain and “Papa” French. Performed at jazz festivals in several cities, at Carnegie Hall, in the Hollywood Bowl, at the grand opening of the Kennedy Center in Washington, D. C., and the Houston Astrodome. Toured Vietnam with Louis Cottrell. Children: Betty, John Cravinas, Jr. Died, New Orleans, April 21, 1977; interred Holt Cemetery. H.C. Sources: New Orleans States-Item, obituary, April 22, 1977; Dixie Magazine, August 29, 1971; Second Line, Summer, 1977.
THOMAS, Caroline Elizabeth, see MERRICK, Caroline Elizabeth Thomas
THOMAS, Charles B., clergyman. Born, New England, ca. 1835. Resided in New Orleans, 1858-1861, where he attempted to moderate local political feelings while he professed liberal Unitarian views from the pulpit. He returned to Massachusetts after the firing on Fort Sumter. T.F.R. Source: Timothy F. Reilly, “Religious Leaders and Social Criticism in New Orleans, 1800-1861” (Ph. D. dissertation, University of Missouri at Columbia, 1972).
THOMAS, Isaac, planter, politician. Born, Sevierville, Tenn., November 4, 1774. Studied law. Legal career: admitted to Tennessee bar, 1808; practiced law at Winchester, Tenn. Removed to Louisiana, 1819, and became a sawmill owner, steamboat operator and planter at Alexandria; reputedly first planter to introduce sugar cultivation to Central Louisiana. Active in Democratic party: member, U. S House of Representatives from Tennessee, 1815-1817; member, Louisiana state senate, 1823-1827. Active in state militia: held rank of brigadier general. Removed to California, 1849; subsequently returned to Louisiana. Died, Alexandria, February 2, 1859; interred Rapides Cemetery, Pineville, La. C.A.B. Sources: Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949 (1950); Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607-1896.
THOMAS, Jesse “Babyface,” bluesman and guitarist. Born, Logansport, La., February 3, 1911. Brother of noted bluesman Willard “Ramblin'” Thomas. One of the foremost North Louisiana bluesman, Jesse Thomas fused ragtime, boogie woogie, jazz, and country music to create his own unique version of the blues. Although influenced by his brother and country singer Jimmie Rodgers, Thomas found his greatest inspiration in the works of Lonnie Johnson. In the 1920s, Jesse followed his brother to Shreveport, where he regularly played the saloons in the “Blue Goose” section of the city (celebrated in his “Blue Goose Blues”). In 1929 he made his only pre-war recordings under his own name and as a sideman for Troy Ferguson and Bessie Tucker. He continued to play the Dallas-Shreveport area during the Depression, but moved to California during World War II. In California, he recorded for many labels, including Miltone and Specialty, and released sides on his own label. Thomas never achieved the fame he deserved, and returned to Shreveport in 1957. He continued to record and perform until his death, regularly appearing in Shreveport nightclubs and various regional folk festivals. Died, Shreveport, La., August 14, 1995. K.S.F. Sources: Author’s research; Eleanor Ellis, “The Blues Troubadour-Revisited,” Blues and Rhythm, #82 (1993); Keith Briggs, liner notes to Jesse Thomas: 1948-1958, Complete Recorded Works in Chronological Order (Document BDCD-6044).
THOMAS, Joshua, mayor of Morgan City, La. Born in Pennsylvania, ca. 1841. Only black mayor of Morgan City. Appointed by Gov. William Pitt Kellogg (q.v.) in April 1874, serving until his elected successor, C. H. St. Clair, took office in January 1875. Also served in local and parish law enforcement; held highest office in local and state Masonic lodges and local Order of Eastern Star. Children: Joshua, Jr., Septime, Théophilus, and Gertrude. Died, Morgan City, 1937; interred with Masonic rites in Morgan City Cemetery. L.K.L. Sources: Black History, Morgan City Archives; History of Morgan City (1960).
THOMAS, Lee Emmett, banker, politician, mayor of Shreveport.. Born, Marion, La., September 23, 1866; son of B. B. Thomas and Susan S. George Thomas of Perry County, Ala. Education: Concord Institute at Shiloh, Union Parish, La.; Howard College, Marion, Ala., A. B. degree; Eastman Business College, Poughkeepsie, N. Y., Master of Accounts degree, 1885; University of Virginia, law degree, 1889. Removed to Shreveport, 1896, to practice law; appointed state bank commissioner by Governor Heard (q.v.), 1903, and served until 1906 when he organized Continental Bank and Trust Company where he served as president until 1917. In 1908, was elected to the state legislature; speaker, 1912-1916; chairman of the Democratic State Central Committee, 1916-1920, and on the national Democratic Executive Committee. Served as chairman of the Board of State Affairs (now the state Tax Commission) from 1917-1919 and as state bank examiner, 1919-1922. In 1924, a candidate for U. S. Senate, but was defeated by Joseph Ransdell (q.v.). Mayor of Shreveport, 1922-1930. Under his leadership the city acquired the Municipal Auditorium, the Market Street viaduct, Cross Lake Reservoir, and ten parks and playgrounds. Was instrumental in the purchase of Barksdale Field. President, Shreveport Chamber of Commerce and active in many fraternal orders. Grand chancellor, Knights of Pythias; grand master, grand lodge of Masons; grand high priest of Royal Arch Masons, grand commander of the Knights Templar and grand patron of the Order of the Eastern Star. An outstanding Shriner and instrumental in having the first Shriner’s Hospital for Crippled Children located in Shreveport. Married Florence Smith, 1891. Died, February 16, 1935. P.L.M. Sources: Lilla McLure and J. Ed Howe, History of Shreveport and Shreveport Builders (1937); Maude Hearn O’Pry, Chronicles of Shreveport (1928).
THOMAS, Philemon, soldier, politician, congressman. Born, Orange County, Va., February 9, 1763; son of Richard and Frances Hawkins Thomas. Removed to Macon County, Ky., 1783, and to Baton Rouge, 1805. A Baptist and a Mason. Served in a Virginia unit in American Revolution; captain in St. Clair’s forces in the 1791 Indian War; colonel in the Kentucky militia and Spanish West Florida; brigadier general in West Florida Republic army and major-general commanding the Second Division, Louisiana Militia during the War of 1812. Delegate to the 1792 Kentucky constitutional convention and member, Kentucky house of representatives, 1796-1799; member, state senate, 1800-1803. Member, 1810 West Florida Republic senate; a presidential elector in 1812; a sheriff, 1815-1819; member, Louisiana house of representatives 1820-1822, 1840-1844; member, Louisiana senate, 1822-1828; an unsuccessful candidate for governor, 1824 and 1828; a representative in Congress, 1831-1835; president, Louisiana Whig Convention, 1840. Married (1) his cousin, Mary Craig. Child, Elizabeth. Married (2) Frances Smith Hawkins. Children: Frances, Mary and Fannie. Died, Baton Rouge, November 18, 1847; interred Post Cemetery. In 1886, remains removed to Baton Rouge National Cemetery. P.A.C. Source: Author’s research.
THOMPSON, Basil, editor, poet, businessman. Born, New Orleans, June 21, 1892; son of Thomas Payne Thompson and Ida Zorn. Education: local schools; Loyola University, A. B., 1910; law student, Tulane University, 1910-1911, Washington and Lee University, 1911-1912; Loyola University, A. M., 1917. World War I service: Field Artillery, Officers Training School. Married, July 28, 1914, Rebekah Brown of Chicago, Ill. Children: Rebekah; Thomas P., II; Barbara. Agent for Equitable Life Assurance Society, 1913-1924. Co-founder (1920) and co-editor with Julius Weis of Double Dealer Magazine. Author: Auguries (1919); Estrays (co-author) (1920); essay on Louisiana in These United States (1923). Contributed verse, usually under a pen name, to periodicals including Century Magazine, The Bookman, The Nation, The New Republic, The Forum, The Lyric, Contemporary Verse, Pearson’s Magazine, Smart Set, The Wave, The Poetry Review (London) and S 4 N. In addition to editorials and book reviews which appeared in the Double Dealer, published articles and stories in various publications. Member, American Legion, Equitable Veterans Legion (10-year corps), D.K.E., Southern D.K.E. Clubs: Louisiana (New Orleans), Quarter Million (Equitable). Member: Catholic church. Died, New Orleans, April 7, 1924. B.R.O. Sources: Double Dealer Magazine, VI, No. 35 (April, 1924); Ernest Gruening, ed., These United States (1923); New Orleans Times-Picayune, obituary, April 8, 1924; Basil Thompson, Augueries (1919); Basil Thompson, et al., Estrays (1920); Who’s Who in America , 1924-1925, XIII.
THOMPSON, Calvin Peter, religious and civic leader. Born, Cocoville, La., June, 1883. Educated at Luther Preparatory School and Luther College, New Orleans; ordained at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, New Orleans, July 17, 1910. Married Edna Thomas on February 22, 1911. Thirteen children. Missionary in North Carolina, 1911-1915; pastor at Napoleonville, La., 1917-1925; pastor of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Mansura, La., 1925-1963. Organized and president, Avoyelles Parish N.A.A.C.P.; instrumental in developing diversified farming in Mansura community; in 1946 as N.A.A.C.P. president filed suit to improve education in Avoyelles Parish; also led voter registration efforts in the community. Honorary doctor of Divinity degree from Concordia Seminary, St. Louis conferred in 1973. Died, Mansura, December 30, 1974. J.A.E. Sources: A Man Honored: Autobiography of Rev. Calvin P. Thompson (1973); Calvin Peter Thompson: A Man of His Times (Documentary film produced by Black Backtrackers of Lutherville and Northwestern State University, 1979).
THOMPSON, Robert, physician, politician, coroner. Born, Ville Platte, La., December 23, 1919; son of Chester Allen Thompson and Rosa Marie Soileau. Married (1) Kathryn Barham; four children: Kathryn L. Wimberly, Robert Thompson, Jr., Stephen Thompson, and Alice Penn. Married (2) Mary E. Lafleur, daughter of Joseph F. Lafleur and Mary Alice Bell, February 1, 1964; one daughter, Dr. Kristin T. Plauché; Educated in public schools, graduating from Ville Platte High School in 1935; completed his undergraduate studies at Louisiana State University and Tulane University; received his medical training at L.S.U. School of Medicine in New Orleans, 1944. Upon graduation from medical school, he was sworn into the United States Army Medical Corps; served during World War II. Following the war he returned to Ville Platte and practiced medicine and surgery until 1954, when he matriculated in the New York Polyclinic School of Postgraduate Medicine in Opthamology and Ear, Nose, and Throat Diseases. Upon completion of training, he established a practice in Ville Platte limited to ear, eyes, nose, and throat disorders. Elected to the Evangeline Parish School Board in 1951 and re-elected for two additional six-year terms; president, 1955-1966. In 1966, he became regional medical consultant and subsequently deputy state health officer for the Louisiana State Board of Health, supervising public health units in a number of South Louisiana parishes; initiated intensive programs for sight, hearing, and heart screening. Resigned this position in 1973 and resumed a limited part-time practice in Lafayette, La. Appointed acting coroner Lafayette parish when Dr. Henry Voorhies stepped down in mid-term, 1979; subsequently elected to a full term in 1980 and re-elected every four years until his death. In 1982, he was responsible for establishment of a forensic laboratory for conducting autopsies. It is recognized as one of the better forensic facilities in the South. The laboratory gained national notoriety when it was used for an autopsy on the exhumed body of Carl Weiss, Sr., the alleged assassin of Huey P. Long. Died, Lafayette, La., March 11, 1993; interred in Fountain Memorial Gardens Cemetery, Lafayette. K.T.P. Sources: Lafayette Daily Advertiser, March 13, 1993; Baton Rouge Morning Advocate, March 13, 1993.
THOMPSON, Theo Ashton, congressman. Born, Ville Platte, La., March 31, 1916; son of C. A. Thompson (d. 1934). Education: public schools, Ville Platte; Louisiana State University, 1932-1934. Married Leatrice Soileau, 1960. Two stepchildren: Christine and Anthony (Ted). Auditor, Louisiana Highway Commission, 1934-1940; transferred to state fiscal office, 1940, and assisted in governmental reorganization. Louisiana delegate to national civil defense assembly, Chicago, 1942. World War II service: U. S. Army Air Force, 1942-1946; later captain in U. S. Air Force Reserve. State budget officer, 1947-1952; chairman, board of trustees, state employees’ retirement system, 1947-1953; liaison with U. S. State Department in Louisiana for training foreign officials in democratic principles, 1950-1951. Elected as Democrat to Congress and served from January 3, 1953, until his death. As congressman championed wildlife conservation. Killed in an auto accident at Gastonia, N.C., July 1, 1965; interred Evangeline Memorial Park, Ville Platte. C.A.B. Sources: Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1971 (1971); Opelousas Daily World, July 2, 1965; Lafayette Daily Advertiser, July 2, 1965.
THORNTON, John Randolph, attorney, U. S. senator. Born, Nottoway Plantation, near White Castle, La., August 25, 1846; son of Charles Augustine Thornton and Cornelia Randolph; grandson of John Hampden Randolph (q.v.). Removed with parents to Rapides Parish, La., 1853. Education: attended Parker Seminary; Pineville, La.; the McGruder Institute, Baton Rouge; and the Louisiana Seminary of Learning at Pineville until 1863. Enlisted in the Confederate Army at the age of 17 and served until the close of the Civil War in Company B, Second Louisiana Cavalry; engaged in agricultural pursuits until 1877; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1877 and commenced practice in Rapides Parish. Married Elizabeth Smith, daughter of Ralph Smith of Rapides Parish. Children: Ralph S., Gordon, Lilly, Mary, Cornelia and Anna. Member of the First Christian Church; judge of Rapides Parish, 1878-1880; delegate to the state constitutional convention, 1898 where he served on the Judiciary Committee and the Committee on Suffrage and Election. Member of the board of supervisors of the state university, 1904-1910; one of the three Louisiana commissioners attending the Conference on Uniform Laws for the United States, and served as vice-president of the body, 1909-1916, afterward, his son, Ralph, was appointed in his place. Appointed as a Democrat to the United States Senate on August 27, 1910, and subsequently elected to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Samuel D. McEnery (q.v.) and served from December 7, 1910, to March 3, 1915; served on Naval Affairs Committee. Was not a candidate for reelection to the Senate; appointed by President Wilson a member of the Board of Ordinance and Fortifications and served from 1915 to 1917; resumed the practice of law in Alexandria. Died, Alexandria, December 28, 1917; interred Rapides Cemetery, Pineville, La. J.B.C. Sources: Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1971 (1971); New Orleans Times-Picayune, obituary, December, 29, 1917.
THORPE, Thomas Bangs, humorist, artist, politician. Born, Westfield, Mass., March 1, 1815. At sixteen years old, his painting of Washington Irving’s “Bold Dragoon” was exhibited at the New York Academy of Fine Arts. Attended Wesleyan University in Middleton, Conn., from 1833 until his junior year when he left because of illness. In 1837, removed to Concordia Parish, La., making his living as a portrait painter and writing humorous stories of Southern frontier life for the Northern press. Many of his stories were later collected and published under the titles Mysteries of the Backwoods (1846), and The Hives of the Bee-Hunter (1854). In Louisiana, became active in politics as a Whig and supporter of public school education. In May 1844, appointed postmaster of Vidalia, La. Three times in 1840s turned down congressional nomination of Whigs, but was his party’s candidate for state superintendent of public education in the 1850s. Edited and published several Whig newspapers, sometimes alone and at other times with partners, including the Concordia Intelligencer (1843), the New Orleans Commercial Times (1845), the New Orleans Daily Tropic (1846), the Baton Rouge Conservative (1847), and the Batesville Eagle (1850). Fought in Mexican War, an experience which laid the basis for three of his books, Our Army on the Rio Grande (1846), Our Army at Monterey (1847), and The Taylor Anecdote Book (1848). Before he left Louisiana in the 1850s, he had married and raised a family. In 1855, removed to New York City where he wrote articles for several national magazines before joining the editorial staff of Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper in 1857. By 1860 he was co-owner and co-editor of a New York newspaper, Spirit of the Times. In 1862, he joined Gen. Benjamin Butler’s (q.v.) invasion force as a colonel of volunteers. After the occupation of New Orleans, Butler named Colonel Thorpe to head the Bureau of Public Works employing over 2,000 men working to restore the levee and some public buildings, improve the city’s drains, and dredge the harbor. In 1864, he was elected as a delegate to the state’s constitutional convention where he took a leading role in the debates over emancipation. During the war he joined the Republican party and supported that party in Louisiana politics during 1864 and 1865, serving as one of the vice-presidents of the party’s first state convention in November 1865. For at least part of 1865 he held the post of acting appraiser of the port of New Orleans. But during the summer of 1866 he returned to New York City and became city surveyor, and after 1869 until his death in 1878, he was chief of the warehouse department of the New York Custom House. J.A.B. Sources: Milton Rickels, Thomas Bangs Thorpe: Humorist of the Old Southwest (1962); Dictionary of American Biography; National Cyclopaedia of American Biography; Debates in the Convention . . . of the State of Louisiana . . . 1864 (1864); Stanton Garner, “Thomas Bangs Thorpe in the Gilded Age: Shifty in a New Country,” Mississippi Quarterly, XXXVI (1983).
TICHENOR, George Humphrey, physician. Born, Ohio County, Ky., April 12, 1837; son of Rolla and Elizabeth Hymphrey Tichenor. Education: in private schools. Businessman in Franklin, Tenn. Civil War service: private and orderly sergeant, Company C, First Tennessee Cavalry Battalion and Company B, Twenty-second Tennessee Cavalry Regiment, 1861-1862; enrolling officer, Mill Springs, Tenn., 1863; acting assistant surgeon, 1864-1865; said to have introduced antiseptic surgery while in Confederate service. Married Margaret A. Drane of Kentucky, November 12, 1863, in Canton, Miss. Children: Rolla A., George H., Jr., and Elmore Drane. Evolved the formula used in the preparation of “Dr. Tichenor’s Antiseptic” during private practice in Canton; practiced medicine in Mississippi and in Baton Rouge, La., 1869-1887. Removed to New Orleans, 1889. Mason. Baptist. Adjutant general and commander of the Louisiana division of the United Confederate Veterans. Died, January 14, 1923; interred Baton Rouge, La. A.W.B. Sources: Clement A. Evans., ed., Confederate Military History, 13 vols (1899); Alcée Fortier, Louisiana, 3 vols. (1914); New Orleans Times-Picayune, obituary, January 15, 1923.
TILTON, Frederick William, businessman, philanthropist. Born, Portsmouth, N. H., ca. 1821; son of Timothy Tilton and Clarissa Wheeler. Education: Pittsfield Academy and private tutors. While still a teenager formed friendship with Henry Van Wart, hardware manufacturer of Birmingham, England. Removed to New Orleans, 1840, worked about a year in hardware business before becoming Van Wart’s agent in New Orleans. Married Caroline Stannard. No children. Supported South in Civil War; went to England to buy arms. Most of his property seized by Federal troops when they occupied New Orleans. Rebuilt his fortune in postwar years. A parton of the arts, made liberal donations to cultural organizations. Before death, expressed desire to do something for Tulane University. Died, June 6, 1890; interred Metairie Cemetery. After death wife donated funds for construction of F. W. Tilton Library. Cornerstone of library laid June 8, 1901, Tulane campus; opened 1903. G.R.C. Sources: New Orleans Daily Picayune, June 7, 1890; Alcée Fortier, Louisiana, 3 vols. (1909).
TINHIOUEN, Caddo chief. Born at the great Cadohadacho village on Red River near Texarkana, Tex. Father of the famous Cadohadacho chief Dehahuit. Career: chief of the Cadohadacho nation from ca. 1760 to ca. 1777; designated “medal chief” by Athanase de Mézières (q.v.) in Natchitoches, April 21, 1770; principal participant in Red River councils of 1770 and 177l, where he was the key to De Mézières’ regional peace plan. One of the great figures in the history of the Louisiana-Texas borderlands, Tinhiouen commanded the veneration of all of the Caddoan tribes and probably exercised more power than later chiefs; a staunch advocate of the traditional Caddoan way of life, he nevertheless allowed himself to be baptised a Christian. He died while visiting the governor in New Orleans, ca. 1779, and was buried with full military honors. R.C.V. Sources: Herbert E. Bolton, Athanase de Mézières and the Louisiana-Texas Frontier, 1768-1780 (Cleveland, 1914); Cecile Elkins Carter, Caddo Indians: Where We Come From (Norman, 1995).
TINKER, Edward Larocque, bibliophile, collector, author, authority on Louisiana history. Born, New York City, September 12, 1881; son of Henry Champlin Tinker and Louise Larocque. Education: Browning School, New York City; Columbia University, A. B., 1902, Litt. D. (honoris cause); New York Law School, LL.B., 1905; Docteur de l’Université de Paris, 1933; LL.D. (honorary), Middlebury College, 1949; Doctor de la Universidad de Madrid, 1955. Married Frances McKee Dodge of New Orleans, January 16, 1916. Admitted to New York bar, 1905; counsel, Legal Aid Society, 1905-1906; assistant district attorney, 1906-1909; in private law practice, 1909-1912; employed by El Paso & Southwestern Railroad Co., El Paso, and installed one of first “safety first” systems in Southwest; traveled with Mexican revolutionaries. After marriage, divided time between New York and New Orleans; began to study Louisiana history and to collect Louisiana materials printed in French, later donated to American Antiquarian Society, Worcester, Mass.; also collected works by Lafcadio Hearn, given to Harvard University, and materials on the horsemen of the New World and on bullfighting, donated to University of Texas, Austin. Columnist, New York Times Book Review; exchange professor, National Universities of Uruguay and Argentina, 1945; formed Tinker Foundation to encourage the reading of books about the United States in Spain. Author of Lafcadio Hearn’s American Days (1934); Toucoutou (1938); Old New Orleans (with Frances Tinker ); The Horsemen of the Americas and the Literature They Inspired (1953); Creole City (1953); other publications including many on Louisiana literature. Military service: Navy lieutenant during World War I; member, New York National Guard. Died, East Setauket, N. Y., July 6, 1968; interred New York. F.M.J. Sources: Edward Larocque Tinker, New Yorker Unlimited: The Memoirs of Edward Larocque Tinker; Who’s Who in America, 1966-1967; obituary, New Orleans Times-Picayune, July 8, 1968.
TOBY, Thomas, Republic of Texas agent in New Orleans. Born, Philadelphia, Pa., September 30, 1798; son of Simeon Toby and Sarah Elliot. Father was captain of the ship Ohio from 1817 to 1825, trading between Philadelphia and New Orleans, where Thomas relocated and established the commission house of Thomas Toby and Brother with his younger brother Samuel. The firm introduced long-tailed drays for hauling cotton bales, owned several merchant vessels, and became a prosperous brokerage house. Married, March 28, 1826, in New Orleans, Clemence Augustin (1807-1879), daughter of Jean-Baptiste Augustin and Marie Saunton, born in Cuba of French ancestry. In the 1830s served as president of the Louisiana Insurance Company and the Orleans Navigation Company, was a director of the Bank of New Orleans, and a city councilman, 1831. In 1835 in partnership with N. F. Williams of Mobile, he obtained the mail route from New Orleans to that city. His strong support of the Texas Revolution led to the appointment of Thomas Toby and Brother as purchasing agent for the Republic of Texas from May 24, 1836, to December 14, 1837. In that capacity, the firm supplied the Texas Army, acted as diplomatic agents, outfitted privateers, and disposed of 940,761 acres of Texas land for cash or credit in New Orleans and other cities. Texas finally paid $45,000 in claims for these services to his heirs. Following a protracted illness, Toby died in New Orleans on July 12, 1849. In the 1870s his wife was director of the Poydras Female Orphan Asylum and two of the Toby’s eleven children, Edward (1830-1904) and Simeon (1828-1904) became prominent New Orleans businessmen. R.S.J. Sources: Alma H. Brown, “The Consular Service of the Republic of Texas,” Southwestern Historical Quarterly, XXXIII (January, 1930); Mrs. Thomas Nelson Carter Bruns, Louisiana Portraits (1975); New Orleans Notary Archives, WIlliam Christy “Acts,” March 31, 1835; New Orleans Daily Crescent, February 13, 1861; John H. Jenkins, ed., The Papers of the Texas Revolution; Thomas Toby Family Bible Records, Tulane University.
TOLIVER, Anna Elizabeth, see JORDAN, Anne Elizabeth Toliver
TONIETTE, Jacques, mechanical engineer. Born Largentière, Hautes-Alpes, France, 1857. Education: local parochial schools, later studied mechanical engineering as applied to practical mining. Married Marie Marguerite Giraud. Children: Noelie; Marie; Jacques, Jr.; Mitchell; Olympe; Eugene A.; Alfred; Albert; Alvin C. Engineer, silver mines, Largentière, France. Removed to Del Oro, Canada, silver mines, 1881; removed to Sulphur Mines, La., 1891; mechanical knowledge useful to Herman Frasch (q.v.) in developing “Frasch Process” in sulphur mining. President, Brimstone Railway and Canal Co.; general manager drilling Union Sulphur Co., 1899-1905; general superintendent, 1905-1924. Member: Catholic church. Died, Sulphur Mines, La., July 23, 1924; interred Graceland Cemetery, Lake Charles, La. G.S.P. Sources: William Haynes, Brimstone: The Stone That Burns (1959); Erbon W. Wise, Brimstone! The History of Sulphur, La. (1981); Lake Charles American Press, August 23, 1924; Toinette family papers.
TONTI, Henri de, trader, lieutenant of La Salle, explorer. Born, Kingdom of Naples, ca. 1650; son of Lorenzo di Tonti and Isabella di Lietto. After being accused of complicity in an abortive plot against the Spanish viceroy, the duque de Arcos, Tonti’s Neopolitan parents fled to Paris in the mid-seventeenth century. Reared and educated in France, serving in the French Army as a cadet in 1668-1669. As a midshipman at Toulon and Marseilles in the 1670s, participated in seven sea campaigns, but later, in Sicily, was made prisoner by the Spanish after his right hand was mutilated by a grenade. In 1678, Tonti returned to France. He was unable to find suitable employment, but while at court made the acquaintance of Cabart de Villermont, king’s counselor working closely with René Robert Cavelier de La Salle (q.v.) on an ambitious expedition to North America. Through Villermont, Tonti was made a part of the new mission. In the summer of 1678, he left France with La Salle on the Saint-Honoré, never to return. Over the next several years, Tonti served La Salle ably in the discovery and exploration of the old Northwest, his mind and body hardened to the wilderness by his youthful service in the galleys. On the River Niagara, Tonti supervised construction of Fort Conti, built a much-needed bark called the Griffon, and erected a string of forts from the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River. After innumerable financial difficulties, desertions, and Indian attacks, La Salle and Tonti began their historic voyage down the Mississippi, in January 1682. In late March they passed the point Marquette (q.v.) and Joliet (q.v.) had reached in 1673. On April 7, they reached the Gulf of Mexico, where La Salle claimed the entire Mississippi Valley for France, and on April 9, erected a cross and a fleur-de-lys near present-day Boothville, Louisiana. Ascending the great river, Tonti constructed another fort, Fort Saint-Louis, in the Illinois country, then remained in command there while La Salle returned to France to prepare for a Gulf Coast expedition to colonize the newly claimed lands. In November 1685, Tonti received news that La Salle’s ships were near the mouth of the Mississippi. Three months later, he set out to meet them. Unable to make contact, he constructed a small fort on the Arkansas and returned to the Illinois country to continue trading operations. Not until September 1689 did he learn that La Salle had been murdered two years before. He then made a heroic effort to reach the abandoned settlers but was unsuccessful. Following La Salle’s death, Tonti remained in the Illinois country, having been granted a half-share in La Salle’s fur trade. His stature with the natives grew to legendary proportions, due in part to the iron hook he wore to replace his lost hand. Known far and wide as Bras de Fer, Tonti was for a time successful in his fur-trading adventures, but opposition by Montreal merchants and limitations placed by Louis XIV on extension of the beaver commerce brought him gradually to ruin. In the 1690s, he spent much of his energies trying to convince the court to continue La Salle’s Louisiana enterprise. In this, he was eventually successful, but leadership of the project was given to Le Moyne d’Iberville (q.v.), hero of the 1697 Hudson’s Bay campaign. Disheartened at not being chosen to command, Tonti was nonetheless bound to cooperate in the new venture. In the autumn of 1698 he led a Jesuit party to the Arkansas River, then in 1700 set out for the Gulf Coast where he served under Iberville and Bienville (q.v.) at Fort Maurepas and Fort La Boulaye. Later, when fortifications were moved to the Mobile River, Tonti was given more strategic assignments. One of his most crucial was a mission to the Chickasaw country in early 1702 in which he was successful in enticing several Chickasaw and Choctaw chieftains to Mobile, resulting in a temporary but timely alliance. Disappointed that he never inherited the full leadership he perhaps deserved, Tonti had little choice for the remainder of his career but to follow the course the Le Moynes set out for him. This he did, however, with staunch fidelity until his death at Fort Louis (Old Mobile), September 4, 1704, from the same epidemic that took away Mississippi voyageurs Charles Le Vasseur and Pierre Charles Le Sueur (q.v.). J.H. Sources: Jean Delanglez, Mid-America, XXI (1939); XXVI (1944); Marcel Giraud, Histoire de la Louisiane française, 1698-1715 (1953); Charles O’Neill, Church and State in French Colonial Louisiana (1966).
TOOLE, John Kennedy, novelist. Born, New Orleans, December 17, 1937; son of John Toole and Thelma Ducoing. Education: McDonogh 14 (New Orleans) and Fortier Senior High School; entered Tulane with a National Merit Scholarship, B.A., English, 1958, graduated Phi Beta Kappa. Awarded a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship and completed an M. A. in English Literature at Columbia University, 1959. Doctoral work at Columbia, 1960-1961, and Tulane, 1968. Taught English at University of Southwestern Louisiana, 1959-1960, Hunter College, 1960-1961, Dominican College, 1963-1969. Drafted into U. S. Army in 1961 and served in Puerto Rico as supervisor of English training program for Puerto Rican recruits. While in Puerto Rico in 1961, began work on A Confederacy of Dunces, a comic novel set in New Orleans. Discharged from the Army in 1963, continued to work on Confederacy while teaching at Dominican. The manuscript was initially praised by Simon and Schuster, then rejected in 1965. Committed suicide March 25, 1969, near Biloxi, Miss. After his death, his mother persisted in the search for a publisher, and in 1980, with encouragement from novelist Walker Percy, Louisiana State University Press published Confederacy. It was awarded the 1980 Pulitzer Prize for fiction. J.F. Source: Author’s research.
TOOMBS, Louis A., adjutant general. Born, Pickins, Miss., 1874. Began military career as private in Texas National Guard Infantry, 1894-1895; first lieutenant, Mississippi Volunteers, Company B, Third Infantry during Spanish-American War; captain, Mississippi National Guard Infantry, 1899-1900. After removing to Louisiana was commissioned first lieutenant, Signal Corps, Louisiana National Guard, and later served with other units of the state National Guard. Was a veteran of the Mexican Border Conflict. A major in the U. S. Reserve Corps, he was called to active duty on June 12, 1917, and became assistant adjutant general of the Central Department of Chicago. He was subsequently promoted to rank of lieutenant colonel in the Adjutant General’s Department of the U. S. Army in October, 1918. Later appointed provost marshal of American forces in Italy, February 12, 1919, and became provost marshal of Belgium on May 20, 1919. Appointed adjutant general of Louisiana by Gov. John M. Parker (q.v.) and continued to serve in that capacity in the administrations of governors Henry Fuqua (q.v.) and Oramel Simpson (q.v.). Advanced the Louisiana National Guard in terms of personnel, equipment, and training. Married. Child: Walter. Died Montgomery, Ala., October 14, 1952; interred Meridian, Miss. TAG, LA Source: Author’s research.
TORKANOWSKY, Werner, musician, composer, musical director and conductor. Born, Berlin, Germany, March 30, 1926; at the age of six, emigrated to Palestine with his parents. Married Ragna Bruno; children: David Torkanowsky; stepchildren: Blas Bruno, Maria Warren. Received his early musical training from his mother, a concert pianist; also studied the violin under the direction of members of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. His musical studies continued in New York, where he studied violin under Raphael Bronstein. From 1954 to 1960 he studied conducting under the famous conductor Pierre Monteux at L’École Monteux. Career: he was the winner of the Naumberg competition in 1961, and he subsequently made his debut with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, with which he made his first recording. He also made guest appearances with several other large orchestras. In addition to orchestras, he conducted opera with several large United States opera companies and twice conducted at the festival of the Two Worlds in Spoleto, Italy (1961 and 1966). From New York, he went to New Orleans and became music director and chief conductor of the New Orleans Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, serving in that capacity for fourteen years. His tenure, the longest in the orchestra’s history, was highly acclaimed, and he was credited with bringing new life and attracting large grants to the New Orleans Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra. After his resignation from the New Orleans orchestra in 1977, he worked as a guest conductor for other city orchestras, both in the United States and abroad before finally settling in Bangor, Maine. There he served for eleven seasons as musical director and conductor of the Bangor Symphony Orchestra. Died, Maine, October 20, 1992. C.H.M. Sources: New Orleans Times-Picayune, October 21, 1992.
TORRAS, Joseph, planter, merchant. Born, 1825, near Barcelona, Spain, to M. Torras, an officer in Spanish navy, and Lucretia Torras. Married Mrs. Nelson of Maryland. Children: Lulu and Jeannie. Career: Immigrated to United States at age eleven to escape his overbearing mother, who opposed his wish to become a sailor; settled in Natchez, Miss., with an older brother and entered school; gave up his dream of going to sea and in 1837 became a clerk in Natchez; in 1840 worked as a factor and around 1840-43, as merchant in Van Buren, Ark.; in 1845 settled in Pointe Coupée Parish, La., and with his brother purchased Gen. Bennett Barton Simmes’ plantation and founded firm of M. & J. Torras; served in commissary department of Confederacy, supervising cotton shipments from Alexandria, La., to Texas; returned to Pointe Coupée Parish in fall 1864 to resume career as planter and merchant; purchased 1,200 acres in that parish and 8,000-acre Turnbull Island in West Feliciana Paris, on which he grazed cattle for the Natchez and New Orleans markets; remained in general merchandizing until 1888, when he sold interest to son-in-law; involved in Democratic party politics and served on State Levee Board for Atchafalaya District; said to have been a patron of education; founded and presided over St. Cecilian Society, which kept a meeting hall on his plantation; assisted in construction of St. James Chapel on his lands. S.K.B. Sources: Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Louisiana (1892; reprint ed., 1975); Judy Riffel, ed., A History of Pointe Coupee Parish and Its Families (1983); see also Shane K. Bernard, “A Biographical Sketch: Joseph Torras,” Louisiana History 34 (1993).
TOURO, Judah, merchant, philanthropist. Born, Newport, R. I., June 16, 1775; son of Isaac Touro, a native of Holland who became minister of the Jewish synagogue at Newport in 1762. Educated, Newport schools, then began a mercantile career. Resided in Boston for several years, then removed to New Orleans in February 1802. Soon opened a successful store on St. Louis Street near the Mississippi River. In 1815, although medically disqualified for service, Touro carried ammunition to batteries at Chalmette during Battle of New Orleans, severely wounded in thigh and never fully recovered. During his mercantile career, Touro amassed a fortune estimated at one million dollars and gave almost one-half to charitable enterprises in Louisiana and other places. Among projects funded were building for Free Library Society of New Orleans which then became Touro Free Library Society; a synagogue, almshouse and infirmary for Jewish people in New Orleans–best remembered for famed Touro Infirmary; also funded Jewish Cemetery in Newport. Philanthropy made his name but not his person well-known in New Orleans; was a shy man who lived a retired, almost unsocial life; had few friends and never married; considered by some to be eccentric. Died, New Orleans, January 18, 1854. His will specified that his remains be buried in the Jewish Cemetery in Newport; temporarily buried in the Hebrew Cemetery, Metairie. K.H. Sources: New Orleans Daily Picayune, January 19, 20, 1854; December 15, 1880; see January 24, 1854, for copy of will; James A. Renshaw, “Judah Touro,” Louisiana Historical Quarterly, XI (1928); Alcée Fortier, ed., Louisiana . . . (1909); The National Cyclopedia of American Biography, VI.
TOWER, Luther Field, merchant, civic leader, best known for his evaluation of New Orleans’ social life in his famous diary. Tower’s detailed observations on prominent individuals in the city’s Protestant Anglo-American community have been widely re-quoted by later historians of the Old South. T.F.R. Source: “Diary of Luther Field Tower,” Louisiana State University, Louisiana Collection, Baton Rouge.
TOWLES, Roberta Semple, educator, politician. Born, Ouida Plantation, West Feliciana Parish, La., June 11,1886; daughter of Daniel Towles and Sarah Butler Ker. Education: privately; Orleans Parish public schools; Newcomb College. Taught for 40 years in Orleans Parish public schools; elected first woman police juror in Louisiana, 1932, and served as Eighth Ward juror, West Feliciana Parish, until 1956 when she retired. Successful cattle farmer, land investor. Died, June 11, 1982; interred Ouida Plantation. E.K.D. Source: Author’s research.
TOWNSEND, Mary Ashley Van Voorhis, poet, novelist. Born, Lyons, N. Y., September 24, 1832; daughter of James G. and Catherine Van Winckle Van Voorhis. Education: district school and the academy. The only child of her mother’s second marriage, she was one year old when her father died. Her mother married a third time, and the family of seven lived comfortably in the country. At twenty, married a cousin, Gideon Townsend. Lived in Fishkill, N. Y., and Iowa City, before removing in 1860 to New Orleans, where they lived the remainder of their lives. Children: Cora Alice, Adele Cephise, and Daisy Budd. Known as the “poet laureat of New Orleans,” Townsend was first published in the Daily Delta (September 19, 1850), when she was in New Orleans visiting a married sister. Her works appeared in newspapers, magazines, and anthologies. In addition to her own name, she adopted a number of pseudonyms for her work in various genres: “Xariffa,” “Michael O’Quillo,” “Crab Crossbones,” and “Henry Rip.” Best known for her poetry, she also wrote one novel, The Brother Clerks: A Tale of New Orleans (1857). Her most popular poem was “Creed,” first published in 1868, and reprinted many times. It is included in Xariffa’s Poems (1870). Four of her poems were printed in The Louisiana Book by Thomas McCaleb in 1894. Among the many events she was asked to commemorate in poetry was the New Orleans World’s Industrial and Cotton Centennial Exposition (1884). On one of several visits to Mexico, she was honored by election to the Liceo Hidalgo, the foremost literary club in Mexico City, members of which were distinguished literary men. At the time of her election, she was the only woman from the United States so honored. Grace King (q.v.) eulogized her as a poet and a woman who would be greatly missed by her readers throughout the South. She died of injuries received in an accident in Galveston, Tex., June 7, 1901. Additional works: Easter Sunrise (1889); Distaff and Spindle (1895); Down the Bayou: The Captain’s Story, and Other Poems (1902). D.H.B. Sources: L. Manly, ed., Southern Literature from 1579-1895 (1900); Frances Willard, A Woman of the Century (1893); Lucian Knight, ed., A Library of Southern Literature (1929); Mildred Rutherford, The South in History and Literature (1907); M. T. Tardy, Living Female Writers of the South (1872); J. W. Davidson, Living Writers of the South (1869); American Women Writers, IV (1982); Who’s Who in America, 1899-1900; Dictionary of American Biography.
TRACY, Edward L., soldier. Born March 31, 1800. Became captain, native American Artillery; later, brigadier general, Louisiana militia. First commander, Washington Artillery from September 7, 1838, to December 31, 1842. Died in Mississippi, October 16, 1862; interred St. Patrick’s Cemetery II, New Orleans. TAG, LA Source: Military records, Jackson Barracks Library, compiled by Mary B. Oalman, Military Historian.
TRANCHEPAIN, Marie de Saint-Augustin, founding superior of Ursuline Convent and School in New Orleans. Raised in Protestant family, convert to Catholicism, entered Order of Saint Ursula at Rouen in 1699. Volunteered for service in Louisiana when Jesuit Nicolas Ignace de Beaubois (q.v.) negotiated contract with Company of Indies for Ursulines, 1726. Mother Superior of group of twelve nuns who reached New Orleans August 6, 1727, after danger-filled, five-month voyage. Under her leadership Ursulines served sick in hospital, opened school for girls, cared for orphans, gave instruction to white, black, and Indian women. Died, New Orleans, November 11, 1733. C.E.O. Sources: Archives des Colonies; C. E. O’Neill, Church and State in French Colonial Louisiana: Policy and Politics to 1732 (1966); [H. C. Semple], The Ursulines in New Orleans and Our Lady of Prompt Succor: A Record of Two Centuries, 1727-1925 (1925).
TRAYLOR, L. A., Louisiana Populist. While he was always something of a political maverick, as a Populist Traylor was a flash in the pan. Before his rise to prominence in the People’s Party, Traylor had been associated with Radical Republicanism and Greenbackism in Louisiana. Though dwarfish in stature Traylor did not keep himself from the public eye. He was an ordained Baptist minister, taught in several of the hill parishes’ schools, he sold Famous Life Association insurance, and, from time to time, he hawked patent medicine. However, the work which brought him the most attention was his advocacy of the People’s Party in Louisiana in the 1890s. As an organizer in northern and central Louisiana, Traylor had considerable success in converting black Republicans to Populism. Riding the crest of his new-found popularity, Traylor was appointed president of the newly established Farmers’ Union College in his home parish of Grant. Elected to the executive committee of the Farmers’ Union (Third District), Traylor was also named state chairman of the Committee of Organization of the Louisiana People’s Party in 1891. In September of that year Traylor became editor of the Grant Parish Populist’s political organ, the Ocala Demand, published in Colfax. Traylor’s editorials, heavily laced with invective against the Democratic Colfax Chronicle, attacked “Louisiana aristocrats” and the state’s Bourbon press. A staunch supporter of the third-party movement, Traylor, in September 1891, had vainly fought against pressure on the Farmers’ Union by the Anti-Lottery League to unite with it in an effort to gain control of the state’s Democratic party. Murphy J. Foster (q.v.) emerged as the League/Union candidate against Bourbon Democrat Samuel D. McEnery (q.v.), and Traylor’s worst fears were realized. The Farmers’ Union faded as a sell-out; the Populists, however, seemed to benefit. Traylor, meanwhile, in a curious turnabout, fell under the influence of Lottery men and money and by December 1891 was promoting among Populists the candidacy of the Bourbon McEnery. Denounced by Populist Hardy Brian (q.v.) as “the arch traitor and cats-paw” Traylor slipped swiftly into anonymity. D.W.M. Sources: William Ivy Hair, Bourbonism and Agrarian Protest; Daily Picayune, September 19, 1891; October 3-5, 1891.
TREIGLE, (Adanelle W.) Norman, bass-baritone. Born, New Orleans, March 6, 1927; son of Wilfred Treigle and Claudia Fisher. Education: local schools; following military service in the U. S. Navy, at Loyola University of the South, New Orleans, where he studied with Elizabeth Wood. Debut with the New Orleans Opera Association, October 23, 1947 (duke of Verona, Romeo et Juliette). Vocal soloist radio station WWL, and further supporting roles with the New Orleans Opera. Engaged by the New York City Opera; debut March 28, 1953 (Colline, La Bohème). Active member of that company until 1972, singing 237 house performances, with additional performances on tour. Appeared throughout this country in opera, oratorio and concert and, with the New York City Opera, at the Brussels World Fair in 1958. Created roles of Grandpa Moss in Aaron Copland’s The Tender Land (1954), Rev. Hale in Robert Ward’s The Crucible (1961), Judge Brooks Townsend in Carlisle Floyd’s The Passion of Jonathan Wade (1962), and the title role in Floyd’s Markheim (1966), all world premieres, and St. Peter in the American premiere of Carl Orff’s Der Mond (1956). Wide repertoire which included notable interpretations of Boito’s Mefistofele, Handel’s Julio Cesare, Olin Blitch (Susannah), King Dodon (Le Coq d’Or), and the four villains (Les Contes d’Hoffman), all of which were recorded, some on private labels. Made official European debut in 1974 (March 18, Royal Festival Hall, London, Mefistofele) (November 22, Covent Garden, Faust). Married (1) Lorraine Siegel, 1946. Children: Norman Adanelle, Phyllis Susannah. Married (2) Linda Merritt, 1963. Adopted daughter: Lisa. Died, New Orleans, February 16, 1975; interred Metairie Cemetery. J.B.** Sources: Martin Sokol, Norman Treigle . . . A Man Remembered (published by the New York City Opera Guild); New Orleans Times-Picayune, February 17, 18, 1975.
TRENAUNAY DE CHANFRET, Claude, planter, subdelegate and judge, Pointe Coupée, 1743(?)-1782(?). Born, 1698. Married (1) Charlotte Julie Moreau. Married (2) Augustine Allain, widow of Henri Gerard, June 10, 1771. Four children. Assassinated by the runaway slave Latulipe, July 10, 1792, while at dinner with François Mayeur, André Gariot, and Joseph Etienne Blanc. D.N.K. Sources: Bill Barron, ed., Census of Pointe Coupée, Louisiana, 1745 (1978); Pointe Coupée Parish Records, Document 1762, July 10, 1792; “Nuncupative Will of Philip Haynaud,” Louisiana Historical Quarterly, V (1922).
Trévigne, Paul, journalist, Reconstruction leader, educator. Born New Orleans, 1825. Editor of L’Union, first newspaper owned by Creoles of Color, published only in French 1862-1864 in which he wrote several articles on slavery, caste prejudice and racial equality; Editor of La Tribune de la Nouvelle Orléans/New Orleans Tribune, 1864-1869. Language teacher at the Institute Catholique des Orphelins Indigents, later served as principal until 1906. Published the “Centennial Tribute to the Negro” in the Weekly Louisianian, a project describing the accomplishements of Louisiana’s free blacks; the first segment of this tribute centered on literature, the second on arts and labor, the third on science. Only the tribute dealing with literature is presently extant. Also contributed several political essays to The Crusader. Wrote the eulogy of Dr. Charles Louis Roudanez (q.v.) in The Crusader, March 22, 1890. Died New Orleans, January 15, 1908. F.C.A. Sources: Letters to Joanni Questy on December 4, 1875, to Camille Thierry and Victor Séjour on December 25, 1875; Rodophe Lucien Desdunes, Our People and our History (1911), trans. sister Dorothea Olga McCants (1973); Charles B. Rousseve, The Negro in Louisiana: Aspects of His History and His Literature (1937); author’s personal research.
TROBRIAND, Philippe Régis Dénis de Keredern de, author, soldier. Born, Château des Rochettes near Tours, France, June 4, 1816; son of Baron Joseph de Trobriand and Rochine Hachin de Courbeville. Education was for a military career; attended the College of St. Louis, Paris, France, 1825; the College of Rouen, where his father was in command; graduated from the College de Tours, graduated 1834, and from Poitiers in law in 1837. Wrote poetry and published the novel, Les Gentilshommes de l’Ouest, in 1840. Toured the United States in 1841 and published “Le Rebelle: Histoire Canadienne” in Le Courrier des Etats-Unis. Married Mary Mason Jones of New York in January 1843 in Paris. Returned to New York in 1847; editor of the Revue du Nouveau Monde, 1849-1850; contributor to Le Courrier des Etats-Unis; elected colonel of the “Garde de Lafayette” of the New York militia in 1861; became an American citizen and set out to help subdue the Confederacy; appointed brigadier general of volunteers, January 5, 1864; brevetted major general of volunteers, April 9, 1865; in July 1866 commissioned colonel in the regular army while on leave in France writing Quatre Ans de Campagnes à l’Armée du Potomac (2 vols., 1867-1868); returned to America and served in Dakota, Montana, Utah, and Wyoming; succeeded to the title of count in 1874; stationed in New Orleans in 1875 representing the federal government during Reconstruction in Louisiana; resided in New Orleans after retirement in March 1879; spent last years reading, cultivating roses, visiting France, and spending summers in Long Island, N. Y. with daughter; died there on July 15, 1897; survived by his widow and two daughters: Mrs. Charles A. Post and Mrs. Burnett Stears; interred St. Anne’s Cemetery, Sayville, N.Y. L.L.H. Sources: Dictionary of American Biography, V; New Orleans Daily Picayune, obituary, July 17, 1897.
TRONCHET, Henri Louis, French opera enthusiast. Born at sea, March 15, 1856, while parents, Henri Louis Tronchet and Marie Gisors, en route to Louisiana. Education: Jesuit High School. Bookkeeper for several cotton brokers and at the time of his marriage to Blanche Livaudais, 1883, was working in the Glendy Burke (q.v.) cotton office. Children: Henri, Jr., died in infancy, and Julie, who married Louis C. Masson. Devoted to all French cultural activities, he was a member of Les Pompiers de l’Opera. This volunteer organization made and put out every fire used in a production at the French Opera House. Died, May 25, 1924; interred St. Louis Cemetery II, New Orleans. M.M.C. Sources: Family records; New Orleans Times-Democrat, February 28, 1891; March 18, 1891; obituary, May 26, 1926.
TROTTER, John Wallace, civic and church leader. Born, New Iberia, La., June 14, 1917; son of John Alden Trotter and Florence Cherry. Education: New Iberia High School, graduated 1935; graduate Southwestern Louisiana Institute (now University of Southwestern Louisiana), Lafayette, La., B. S. degree in Liberal Arts, 1939; postgraduate studies in Economics, Mathematics and Physics. Married Mary Alice Williams (d. 1988), daughter of Ruby Cole Williams and Willie Ellis Williams, in Oak Grove, La., April 26, 1941. June 1946 commenced employment with Iberia Building Association (later Iberia Savings and Loan Association) as assistant secretary-treasurer; January 1947, elected secretary-treasurer and chief executive officer; January 1951, elected to board of directors; March 1967 elected executive vice-president and chief executive officer; January 1978, elected president and chief executive officer; June 1981, elected vice-chairman of board; and January 1985 elected chairman of board. President, Southwestern Area, Louisiana Savings and Loan League; president, Louisiana Savings and Loan League, 1967. Member of Louisiana Savings and Loan League Legislative Committee which drafted the statute adopted by the Louisiana legislature, 1970, regulating the savings and loan industry. 1972-1975, director, Federal Home Loan Bank of Little Rock. Iberia Credit Bureau, president; New Iberia Protestant Cemetery Association, president; Rotary Club, director; Louisiana Travel Protection Association, director and regional vice-president; United Givers, director; Salvation Army, advisory board; Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana, Inc., board of trustees; Iberia Industrial Development Corporation, director and secretary-treasurer; Boy Scouts of America, troop committees; New Iberia Chamber of Commerce, director, treasurer, and executive committee; Iberia Parish Planning Commission, member; American Red Cross, Iberia Parish Chapter, chairman; Municipal Employees Civil Service Board, City of New Iberia, member; Iberia Rod and Gun Club, director; New Iberia Rotary Club, director; Better Business Bureau of Acadiana, director. Awarded Distinguished Civic Service Award by the Greater New Iberia Chamber of Commerce, 1980. Member, First United Methodist Church. Died, June 4, 1985; interred Rosehill Cemetery, New Iberia. L.M.C. Source: Minute Books and records of Iberia Savings and Loan Association, New Iberia, La.
TRUDEAU, Antoine Marcel “Mutt,” attorney, civil rights activist. Born, March 29, 1927; son of Antoine Marcel, Sr., and Amelia Millet. Education: local Catholic schools; Xavier University of New Orleans, B. S.; Southern University Law School. World War II veteran, appointed cooperating attorney to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and Educational Fund by Thurgood Marshall in 1954; co-counsel of civil rights cases from 1955-1978. Succeeded in ending school segregation in Jefferson Parish. Past president, NAACP State Conference of Branches; board of directors and past president, Urban League of Greater New Orleans; appointed by President Eisenhower to President’s Commission on Governmental Contracts; assistant city attorney; president, Safety Industrial Life Insurance & Sick Benefit Association, Inc. Member: Louisiana Bar Association; Louis Martinet Legal Society; Urban League; National Bar Association; NAACP; treasurer of the Knights of Peter Claver Council III, Fourth District Knight. Married Audrey Aramburo. Children: Paul, Marvin, and Marcel. Catholic. Died, October 23, 1978; interred Mount Olivet Cemetery, New Orleans. C.T. Source: New Orleans Times-Picayune, October 21, 1978.
TRUDEAU, Charles Laveau, surveyor. Born, New Orleans, ca. 1750; son of Jean-Baptiste Trudeau and Marianne Carrière. Brother of Zenon Trudeau (q.v.). Married Charlotte Peyraud. Children: Caroline, who married Thomas Urquhart (q.v.); Celestine, who became the second wife of Gen. James Wilkinson (q.v.); Josephine, who married Manuel Andry, fils, and Mannette, who married David C. Kerr. Named surveyor general of Spanish Louisiana in early 1780s and served in that capacity until his resignation on December 13, 1805. Elected to remain in Louisiana as an American citizen. His personal copies of surveys he had made became important in land questions affecting Louisiana “because they were the sole remaining records in the territory available to check land fraud.” The official land surveys were taken by the Spaniards first to Pensacola and then to Havana. Because of the importance of the Trudeau papers “an agreement was worked out between Trudeau, Governor Claiborne (q.v.), and District Attorney James Brown” (q.v.). By the terms of the agreement, the papers would remain in Trudeau’s possession “if the surveyor would keep the documents within the territory and take an oath of allegiance to the United States.” The papers remained in Trudeau’s possession until his death. Thereafter they began a long odyssey that eventually took them out of the state. Finally, in the early 1980s, two centuries after Trudeau began the famous collection, the papers returned to Louisiana. Trudeau in later life served as recorder for the city of New Orleans and president of the city council. Died, October 6, 1816. G.R.C. Sources: Edward F. Haas, “Odyssey of a Manuscript Collection: Records of the Surveyor General of Antebellum Louisiana,” Louisiana History, XXVII (1986); Charles Maduell, Marriage Contracts, Wills and Testaments of the Spanish-Colonial Period in New Orleans, 1770-1804 (1969); Glenn R. Conrad, St. Charles (1974).
TRUDEAU, Felix, colonial military officer, last Spanish commandant at Natchitoches, and United States consular officer. Born, October 30, 1763, and baptized at New Orleans, June 26, 1765; son of Jean Louis Marie Trudeau, captain of the naval reserves, and his wife Geneviève Damaron. According to family tradition, Trudeau was appointed a cadet in Spain’s Louisiana infantry at the age of twelve (June 1, 1776). After service in Bernardo de Gálvez’s (q.v.) campaign against the British forts at Manchac and Baton Rouge (1779)—service adjunct to the American Revolution—he rose to sublieutenant of the grenadiers (January 10, 1780), with whom he again saw action against the British at Fort Charlotte of Mobile (1780). Deemed “good for his rank,” and said to be “of good military character, known valor, good application and conduct, and average capacity,” he eventually rose to lieutenant (December 23, 1786). In the wake of civil unrest on Red River, during the Jacobin revolt of 1795, he was appointed civil and military commander of the Natchitoches post—a post he held from May 1, 1796, until April 30, 1804, when he relinquished Spanish control of the Louisiana frontier to the American captain Edward D. Turner (q.v.). Spanish officials in Texas subsequently considered using him as an “informer” to “send secret communications” to them, and evidence suggests that he was amenable. On August 7, 1810, he was commissioned by the United States consulate at New Orleans to serve as chargé d’affaires for Spanish matters at Natchitoches—a post he held at least to the summer of 1812. However, the appointment was formally opposed by Texas officials on the grounds that communications were forbidden between Texas and Louisiana; and numerous documents preserved in the Bexar Archives, Institute of Texan Cultures, University of Texas, San Antonio, chronicle reports from Trudeau to Spanish officials regarding American affairs, its war with Great Britain, and Natchitoches-based plans for American insurrectionary activity in Texas. In the last decade of his life, Trudeau also dabbled in real estate development in the burgeoning town of Natchitoches. On March 8, 1788, Felix dispatched a petition to the Spanish king for permission to marry Marie “Manette” de Lassize of New Orleans, daughter of Capt. Nicolas de Lassize and Marie Perinne Piquery. Permission granted, they wed on December 29, 1788. She died at Natchitoches on January 12, 1808, leaving no children. Trudeau followed her in death on February 9, 1822, at which time his heirs were his nieces and nephews. Both the 1810 and 1820 censuses show no white females in his home. However, several months after his death, there emerged in Victoria County, Tex., a woman who called herself Margaret (née Hayes) Trudeau. According to Margaret, she was first the widow of a Mr. Hayes (by whom she had two children) and subsequently the wife of a Monsieur Trudeau, who had been governor of the province of Louisiana. She subsequently married John D. Wright in Texas. Margaret’s presence in Natchitoches is confirmed by numerous Catholic church records of 1816 to 1821—including the delayed baptism of two children born to her and James Hayes in 1806 and 1809 and two illegitimate children born to her in 1816 and 1821. Although no father was named for the last two, the 1816 child was baptized as “Maria Geneveva y Troudeau Roverson.” At the estate sale of Felix’s possessions, Margaret bought his bed. Thus, circumstantial evidence points to Felix Trudeau as the father of two children by Margaret Robertson: Marie Geneviève, born March 17, 1816; and Zelestin Ramon, born August 24, 1821. E.S.M. Sources: St. Louis Cathedral Baptisms and Marriages, 1763-1766, p. 96 (Félix Trudeau baptism) and Libro de Matrimonios Celebrados en Esta Iglesia Parroql de San Luis de Nueva Orleans [from April 1784], p. 60 (Felix Trudeau marriage); Docs. 2034 (Trudeau request to marry) and 2136 (notice of permission), legajo 2545, Audencia de Santo Domingo, Archivo General de Indias, Seville; Jack D. L. Holmes, Honor and Fidelity: The Louisiana Infantry Regiment and the Louisiana Militia Companies, 1766-1821 (1965), 152-53 (for Trudeau service record); Adán Benavides Jr., The Béxar Archives (1717-1836): A Name Guide (1989), for location of numerous Trudeau correspondences; Harold A. Bierck Jr., “Dr. John Hamilton Robinson,” Louisiana Historical Quarterly, 25 (1942): 651 (for Trudeau’s service as vice-consul). Doc. 2708, French Archives (for first official act at Natchitoches), docs. 4512, 4530, 4782, French Archives, and Deed Books 3: 451, 6: 138, and 12: 207 (for real estate development); and Succession Book 4: 66-71, 126-35, 208-22 (estate of Felix Trudeau); all in Clerk of Court’s Office, Natchitoches; 1810 and 1820 United States censuses of Natchitoches; Turner to Trudeau, receipt for archives, folder 738, Melrose Collection, Northwestern State University, Natchitoches; Register 5, 1822 burials (Felix Trudeau); register 6, nos. 1818:1, 1820:175, 1821:13, and 1821:98 (Hayes-Robertson baptisms); and register 15 burials (Manette Trudeau); Immaculate Conception Church, Natchitoches.
TRUDEAU, Zenon, administrator, planter. Born, New Orleans, November 28, 1748; son of Jean-Baptiste Trudeau, a Louisiana pioneer, and Marianne Carrière. Brother of Charles Laveau Trudeau (q.v.), surveyor-general of Louisiana. Well educated; joined army as a cadet in the Regiment of Louisiana, 1769; fought with Gálvez (q.v.) at Baton Rouge and Pensacola. Married, December 20, 1784, Eulalie Delassise, daughter of Nicolas Delassise, commandant at Pointe Coupée, and Maria Piquery. Children: René, Félix Zenon, Emile Valéry, Eulalie (married John Watkins), Aurore (married George Mather [q.v.]), Caroline, and Theodore. Appointed lieutenant-governor of Spanish Illinois in 1792 and served at that post until succeeded by Charles De Lassus (q.v.) in 1799. Refused retirement and a pension in 1797, but in 1803 chose to stay in Louisiana with his family rather than follow the Spanish army to Pensacola. Died, St. Charles Parish, La., September 12, 1813. D.N.K. Sources: Louis Houck, ed., Spanish Regime in Missouri (1909); Frederick Billon, Annals of Saint Louis in Its Early Days . . . (1886); Jack D. L. Holmes, Honor and Fidelity (1965); Spain. Archivo General de Indias, Audiencia de Santo Domingo, legajo 2550, no. 77, April 1, 1785; Document R-300, August 31, 1797, Editor’s note, Favrot Collection, Vol. V, Special Collections, Tulane University; A. P. Nasatir and E. R. Liljegren, eds., “Materials Relating to the History of the Mississippi Valley,” Louisiana Historical Quarterly, XXI (1938).
TRUMAN, William Lawrence, farmer, politician, Baptist layman. Born near Owensboro, Davis County, Ky., January 7, 1841; son of Rev. Richard D. Truman and Amanda M. Daly Truman. Third cousin of President Harry S Truman. Family moved to Missouri when he was a child. Married (1) Cora Hadden (1848-1916), daughter of Dr. Louis Hadden and Margaret Ann Harper Hadden, Opelousas, La., January 11, 1869; children: William Hadden Truman, David Truman, Stella Truman, Wayne Rhinehart Truman, Etta Pearl Truman Corbett, Cora Truman Pulliam, Florence Truman Pulliam, Mamie Truman Alexander and Louise Truman Smith. Married (2) Emma Louise French Wilson (1850-1933) ca. 1930; no children. Joined Company E, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, Missouri State Guard, at Lexington, Mo., September 30, 1861; honorably discharged December 21, 1861. Joined Wade’s First Missouri Battery, Confederate States Army, Green County, Mo., December 22, 1861. Captured at Vicksburg, Mississippi, July 4, 1863. Paroled July 7, 1863. Rejoined unit and served until end of war. Paroled, Greensboro, N.C., May 1, 1865. Resided in Lexington, Ky., where his mother’s family lived, until moving to Bellevue, St. Landry Parish, La., December 1868. Farmed at Bellevue until February 1899. Moved to Gueydan, La., February, 1899, and became a rice farmer. State representative from St. Landry Parish, 1896-1900. Justice of the peace for many years at Gueydan, where he was known as Judge Truman. Active member of United Confederate Veterans. Attended many UCV reunions. Although his father was a Baptist minister, Truman did not make a public profession of faith until 1863, when he was baptized by an Army chaplain. In 1880 Truman solicited Rev. W. C. Friley, corresponding secretary, State Mission Board, Louisiana Baptist Convention, to hold a revival at the courthouse in Opelousas. As a result of this meeting, the First Baptist Church of Opelousas was organized in 1880 with five charter members, including Truman. At his death in 1933, he was the last survivor of this group. One of seven charter members of Gueydan Baptist Church, organized largely through his efforts, March 1902; a deacon of this church until his death. Gueydan Baptist Church renamed Truman Memorial Baptist Church, January 4, 1939. Name changed to First Baptist Church of Gueydan, 1949. Judge Truman sustained a broken hip when he fell on the church steps at Gueydan after prayer meeting on Wednesday, July 25, 1933. Died, American Legion Hospital, Crowley, La., July 30, 1933; interred Gueydan Cemetery; a Confederate flag and a copy of Confederate Veteran Magazine were placed in his coffin and buried with him. A.Y.B. Sources: Gilbert L. Dupré, Political Reminiscences, 1876-1902 (date unknown), p. 92; John Pinckney Dunham and John Stanislaus Ramond, Baptist Builders in Louisiana (1934), 112-113; Centennial Program, First Baptist Church, Opelousas, La., 1980; Program for dedication of new church building, Opening Day, September 8, 1946, Truman Memorial Baptist Church, Gueydan, La.; William L. Truman, Confederate Pension File, Number 7424, Louisiana State Archives, Baton Rouge, La.; United States Census, Vermilion Parish, Louisiana, 1900 Abbeville Meridional, January 28, 1933; August 5, 1933; September 14, 1946; New Orleans Times-Picayune, July 31, 1933; Letter from Rev. Maurice Aguillard, December 15, 1992.
TUDOR, Simon Woodson, businessman. Born, Madison County, Ky., November 5, 1887; son of James A. Tudor and Malinda Alice Turner. Education: Georgetown College, Louisiana College, B.A., 1913. Athletic director and coach of football, basketball, and baseball teams, Louisiana College, 1910-1913, 1914-1917. Coach, Centenary College, 1912. Teacher, Cooper, Vernon Parish, La., 1913-1914. Principal, Pineville Public School, 1917-1920. Real estate, residential and commercial buildings, 1920-1946. Founder and president, Tudor Construction Co., 1946-1956. Married, September 21, 1913, Frances Ollie Beall, daughter of William Columbus Beall and Sarah Frances Curry. Children: Robert Beall, Dorothy Louise. Deacon, First Baptist Church, Pineville. Member, Louisiana College Board of Trustees, 1941-1956, president, 1943-1953. Generous benefactor of Louisiana College. Tudor Hall (men’s dormitory) on Louisiana College campus named for subject. Died, May 10, 1956; interred Greenwood Memorial Park, Pineville. L.S.* Sources: Mrs. Ollie Beall Tudor Gayer (wife); Robert B. Tudor, Sr. (son); Michael S. Tudor (grandson); Vernon D. Beall (nephew).
TULANE, Paul, merchant, philanthropist. Born, near Princeton, N. J., May 10, 1801; son of Louis and Maria Tulane. Education: local private school; Somerville Academy until age fifteen. Clerked briefly in a store in Princeton. Spent three years touring the southern United States with his well-educated cousin, a member of the French bar. Established Paul Tulane and Co., in New Orleans, 1822, a retail and wholesale business in dry goods and clothing. Later invested in real estate in New Orleans and New Jersey. Philanthropy included gifts to Presbyterian churches in New Orleans and Princeton. Gave property valued at more than $1,000,000 including all his New Orleans real estate holdings to the University of Louisiana, 1882; name consequently changed to Tulane University of Louisiana. Died, Princeton, N. J., March 27, 1887. J.F.T. Sources: Dumas Malone, ed., Dictionary of American Biography; John Smith Kendall, “Paul Tulane,” Louisiana Historical Quarterly, XX (1937); John P. Dyer, Tulane: The Biography of a University, 1834-1965 (1966).
TULLIS, Garner H., businessman, civic leader. Born, St. Joseph, La., April 4, 1893; son of Hugh Tullis, an attorney and landowner of Tensas Parish, La., and Nellie Watson. Married Mary Lee Brown, October 6, 1916. Children: Malcolm McCullough (b. 1917), m. Lawrence T. Barkley; Mary Lee (b. 1919), m. (1) Norman Eustis Eaves; (2) Albert Bruce Crutcher; Garner Hugh, Jr. (1923-1930), Eli Watson (b. 1928), m. (1) Molly Ferrell; (2) Deborah Beaird. Arrived in New Orleans at age 16 and worked his way from messenger in a cotton firm to the preeminent cotton trader of the city. Employed by John F. Clark & Co. and later formed his own brokerage firm of Tullis, Craig & Bright. Became a partner of E. F. Hutton & Co. in charge of its New Orleans offices. One of the founders of the Louisiana and Southern Life Insurance Company (now Charter Security Life Insurance), and was chairman of the board until his death. During World War II served as lieutenant commander in the Coast Guard Reserve, as commander of the Port of Orleans Security Volunteer Force. He ruled New Orleans as Rex, 1935. A nationally known yachtsman, won the St. Petersburg to Havana race in 1930, 1932, and 1948. Past commodore of the Southern Yacht Club. Died, February 18, 1966, while cruising off Apalachicola, Fla., aboard his yacht Windjammer. G.D. Sources: Newspaper obituary; SYC publications; family records.
TUREAUD, Alexander Pierre, attorney, civil rights leader. Born, New Orleans, February 26, 1899; son of Louis Tureaud and Eugénie Dejean. Religion: Catholic. Education: elementary public schools of New Orleans, public high schools of Washington, D. C.; honor graduate of Howard University Law School, 1925. Admitted to Washington, D. C., bar, 1925; Louisiana bar, 1927. Resident of New Orleans, 1899-1916; 1926-1972. Employee of New Orleans Comptroller of Customs, 1926-1941; sole practicing black attorney in Louisiana, 1937-1947. National advocate, Knights of Peter Claver, 1932-1972; admitted to practice before U. S. Supreme Court, 1935; counsel for Louisiana Colored Teachers Association, 1945-1972; ad hoc judge of New Orleans Traffic Court, 1969. Appointed notary public, 1948; confirmed, 1950. Married, 1931, Lucille Dejoie of New Orleans, daughter of Joseph and Louise Dejoie. Six children. Elected member of board of New Orleans, NAACP, 1927, and continued to hold various posts in NAACP until death. As part of Thurgood Marshall’s team of NAACP attorneys after 1939, he acted as lawyer of record in scores of civil rights and desegregation cases in Louisiana. Among the most important: (voting rights) Edward Hall v. T. J. Nagel, Registrar of Voters, 1946; (teacher salary equalization) Joseph P. McKelpin v. Orleans Parish School Board, 1941; (desegregation of higher education) Roy S. Wilson v. Board of Supervisors, Louisiana State University, 1950; Alexander P. Tureaud, Jr. v. Board of Supervisors of Louisiana State University, 1953; (desegregation of public schools) Earl Benjamin Bush v. Orleans Parish School Board, 1952; (desegregation of public facilities) Abraham L. Davis v. deLesseps S. Morrison, Mayor of New Orleans, 1957; Garner et al. v. State of Louisiana, 1961. Active in Republican party until 1950s; subsequently in Democratic party; founder of the Orleans Parish Voters League, 1948; mentor and law partner of Ernest N. Morial who became the first black mayor of New Orleans. Died, New Orleans, January 22, 1972; interred St. Louis Cemetery III. J.L. Sources: Barbara Ann Worthy, “The Travail and Triumph of a Southern Black Civil Rights Lawyer: The Legal Career of Alexander Pierre Tureaud, 1899-1972” (Ph. D. dissertation, Tulane University, 1984); A. P. Tureaud Papers, Amistad Research Center, New Orleans; Oral History of A. P. Tureaud (in possession of Joseph Logsdon).
TURGIS, Isidore-François, Confederate Army chaplain. Born, Carantilly, Commune of Canton, in Marigny, France, April 12, 1813; son of a farmer. Under guidance of l’Abbé Louis Tapin, studied the classics and was admitted in time to Coutances Seminary. Ordained May 31, 1846, served as curate in the Diocese of Versailles, and, later, in various French churches. Despite efforts to serve as a military chaplain in the Crimean War (1853-1856), rejected for physical reasons but finally, in 1857, admitted for training in the Corps of Military Chaplains. During war with Austria, he went with the French Army to Italy, and took part in the battles of Montebello, Palestro, Magenta, Crossing of the Tessin, Marignan, and Solferino. By 1858, with French forces in Cochin China as chaplain. Returned to France where he became interested in the pending American Civil War. Arrived in New Orleans; became an assistant at St. Louis Cathedral. Soon became chaplain of the New Orleans Guards Battalion and, later, chaplain of the 30th Louisiana Regiment, March 10, 1862. During campaign in the state of Mississippi, ministered to a battalion with General Loring’s division. Extant letters of Confederate soldiers and officers testify to the bravery, dedication, and compassion of Père Turgis. He stayed with his men until surrender at Appomattox, 1865. Returned to Federally occupied New Orleans, debilitated, emaciated, and impoverished. Former soldiers visited him and sought his counsel and assistance. Assigned to old Mortuary Chapel of St. Anthony; died there, March 3, 1868; interred St. Louis Cemetery III. H.C.B. Sources: Leonard Huber, The Church That Would Not Die; New Orleans Archdiocesan Archives; Roger Baudier, The Catholic Church in Louisiana (1939).
TURNBULL, Daniel, planter, owner of Rosedown Plantation, West Feliciana Parish, La. Born, West Feliciana Parish, ca. 1800; son of John Turnbull and Catherine Rucker. Married Martha Hilliard Barrow (q.v.) on November 13, 1828. Children: James Daniel, William, and Sarah. Mrs. Turnbull became a remarkable horticulturist. The gardens of Rosedown are world famous. They started building Rosedown Plantation house on November 1, 1834, and completed it on May 1, 1835, at a cost of $13,109.20. Daniel Turnbull died October 30, 1861. M.C.R. Source: Ola Mae Word, Reflections of Rosedown (1978?).
TURNBULL, John, merchant, trader, and plantation owner. Born, Dumfries County, Scotland, late 1730s or early 1740s. Migrated into the Mobile area of British West Florida, 1760s or early 1770s. Vehemently anti-Spanish and reverently loyal to the British during the American Revolution; Turnbull served in the 4th Battalion of the Royal Regiment of Artillery, stationed in Pensacola, and participated in the failed 1781 uprising against the Spanish government in the Natchez District. He nevertheless received several Spanish grants to large land tracts in the Tombigbee, Natchez, and Baton Rouge districts. A onetime junior partner in the Mobile trading firm of Mather and Strother, Turnbull established a long-term mercantile partnership with the Irishman John Joyce and pursued an independent trading venture that comprised the bulk of his commercial activities. In addition to legally operated trading houses in the Mobile District, on the Yazoo River, and at Chickasaw Bluffs (present Memphis), numerous illegal activities put him at continual odds with the Spanish government. Turnbull emerged as the chief rival and nemesis of the legendary trading firm of Panton, Leslie and Company, threatening that organization’s monopoly over the Choctaw and Chickasaw nations of present Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana in the 1780s. He fathered at least four biracial children by several Indian women: Mary and/or Winifred (b. 1760s, to an unidentified Choctaw either in Pearl River County, Miss., or at Nanna Hubba Bluffs, Ala.), William and George (b. before 1770 to an unidentified Choctaw or Chickasaw), and Sylvia (b. 1783 to Isabella Perry, a part Chickasaw or Choctaw daughter of the white trader Hardy Perry). Shortly thereafter, Turnbull married Catherine Rucker, of a North Carolina family that settled at Natchez, and by her had the following children: Isabelle (b. 1785), John (b. 1789), Sarah (b. 1789), Maria (b. 1792), Susan (b. May 1793), Walter (b. 1794), and Daniel (b. June 1796). Died at his plantation near Baton Rouge, Louisiana, August 24, 1799. R.M.L. Sources: Documents 5/80:61, 5/635:67-68, Colonial Office; 10/162 and 10/170, War Office—all in Public Record Office, London; Mobile Baptismal Book 2:40-a; leg. 41:117-18, 1183-84; 42:992-93; 302:735-36, 831-34; and 1778:696—all in Papeles Procedentes de Cuba, Archivo General de Indias, Seville, Spain; Panton Leslie, and Co. Papers (microfilm copy, University of West Florida), reel 3:1754-55; reel 7:1541; reel 879-80, 201-02, 343-46, 357-59, 454-55, 1017-18, 1093, 1173; reel 9:493-95, 561-62, 890-93, 1205-07, 1219-20; and reel 10:643; Dunbar Rowland, transcriber, “Mississippi Provincial Archives: English Dominion,” 8 vols. (1911), 8:345-58; American State Papers: Documents Legislative and Executive of the Congress of the United States, Public Lands Series, 8 vols. (1832), 1:33, 626-27, 638-39, 642, 661, 694-96, 735, 762, 791, 830-32, 846-47, 861; 3: 39, 44, 61, 627, 832; Diocese of Baton Rouge Catholic Church Records, vol. 2, 1770-1803 (1980), 711; Lawrence Kinnaird, ed., Spain in the Mississippi Valley, 1765-1794; Annual Report of the American Historical Association for the Year 1945 (1949), vol. 3 (pt. 2): 57, 151; 4 (pt. 3): 76, 103-05, 151, 221-27, 291; May Wilson McBee, The Natchez Court Records, 1767-1805: Abstracts of Early Records (1979), 143, 336-37, 396, 445, 452, 493; Elizabeth Becker Gianelloni, “Louisiana’s Spanish West Florida Records,” Louisiana Genealogical Register, 20 (1973): 326-36.
TURNBULL, Martha Hilliard Barrow, horticulturalist. Born, Highland Plantation, West Feliciana Parish, La., September 12, 1809; daughter of William Barrow. Education: private tutors; Mme. Legoin’s Institute, Philadelphia. Married Daniel Turnbull (q.v.), November 13, 1828. Children: James Daniel, William, and Sarah. After wedding trip to Europe and the building of Rosedown, 1834-1835, developed extensive gardens based on parterres and formal statuary of 17th century French style for which there was no precedent in America. Kept detailed garden diary, recording successes and failures in propagating exotic plants introduced, 1836-1896. Died, September 14, 1896; interred Grace Church Cemetery, St. Francisville. E.K.D. Source: Ola Mae Word, Reflections on Rosedown (1978?).
TURNBULL, Walter, colonial politician and planter. Arrived in the Mobile District about the time that it was transferred from French to British control; subsequently served there as the British clerk of court. (The full period of his tenure is unknown; an extant pay voucher in the British Public Record Office covers only the six months preceding February 21, 1767.) Turnbull petitioned the British West Florida Council for land on Mobile River in 1774; he stated that he had resided in the colony upwards of eleven years, that he had never received any land, and that his family consisted of himself and eleven black slaves. Between 1773 and 1777 he purchased another 500 acres on west side of Tombigbee River from Joseph Crow, and in April 1779 he signed a petition setting forth grievances against British Governor Peter Chester. While he remained loyal to Great Britain during the Revolution, he nonetheless swore allegiance to the victorious Spanish in 1780 and received a grant from that regime on January 14, 1790, for twenty arpents fronting on the Tombigbee River. No marriage or children have been identified for Turnbull; and nothing is known of his death. Walter Turnbull is traditionally believed to be the brother of merchant/trader John Turnbull (q.v.), of Dumfries county, Scotland, who was active in British and Spanish West Florida at the same time—a supposition generally drawn from the fact that John named a son Walter. Both circumstantial and direct evidence support that conclusion. First, the land for which Walter Turnbull petitioned in 1790 adjoined David White—the man whom John Turnbull appointed guardian of his part-Choctaw daughter, Sylvia. Second, upon transfer of the Tombigbee lands to the American regime between 1795 and 1813, no claims were filed by heirs of Walter Turnbull on the basis of his British or Spanish grants. Presumably dying childless, then Walter Turnbull’s heirs should have been his siblings—arguably, John Turnbull. After John’s death in 1799, his executors sold several tracts along the Tombigbee and Mobile rivers to Antonio Espejo—including the twenty arpent tract that Walter had received by grant on January 14, 1790. R.M.L. Sources: Colonial Office, document 5/634:2324, Public Record Office, London; leg. 200:769, Papeles Procedentes de Cuba, Archivo General de Indias, Seville; Dunbar Rowland, trans., “Mississippi Provincial Archives: English Dominion,” 8 vols. (1911), 3:123 and 8:345-58; Mary A. Petersen, “British West Florida, Abstracts of Land Petitions: The Mobile-Pensacola-Tombigbee-Biloxi Area,” Louisiana Genealogical Register 31 (1984): 152; Marilyn Davis Hahn, Old St. Stephen’s Land Office Records & American State Papers: Public Lands, vol. 1, 1768-1888 (1983), 6, 127; John Turnbull estate abstracts, Elizabeth Becker Gianelloni, “Louisiana’s Spanish West Florida Records,” Louisiana Genealogical Register 20 (1973): 326-36.
TURNER, Edward Demaresque, soldier, territorial administrator, jurist. Native of Boston, Mass. Married Elizabeth Grey, a native of Boston; seven children: Samuel Hughes, Edward D., Jr., Emily Neuville, Mortimer, William, and Sophia Ann. Commissioned ensign in the United States Army, March 4, 1791. Led a detachment of thirty-four men to reinforce Gen. Anthony Wayne’s forces in the Northwest Territory, July 1792. Turner’s command was transferred from Pittsburgh, Pa., to Legion Ville, twenty miles downstream, in late November 1792. Served as paymaster for the 2nd Battalion in Wayne’s army, late 1792 and 1793. Promoted to the rank of captain, November 11, 1793. Served as commander of Fort Adams, Mississippi Territory, 1803. In late 1803, he led a military escort of approximately 300 soldiers to New Orleans as a military escort for American commissioners Gov. William C. C. Claiborne (q.v.) and Gen. James Wilkinson (q.v.), who had been given a presidential commission to receive Louisiana in the name of the United States. Witnessed the transfer ceremony at New Orleans, December 20, 1803. Commissioned civil commandant of the District of Natchitoches, La., February 25, 1804. Took possession of Natchitoches in the name of the American government, ca. May 1, 1804. Served as Natchitoches commandant until ca. February 1806. As commandant, took the first American steps to establish the Sabine River as the boundary between American and Spanish territories. Resignation from the army accepted, November 30, 1805. Appointed judge of Natchitoches Parish, Jnauary 23, 1806. Moved to Ascension Parish and became judge in his new home parish, 1808. Established a business partnership with Daniel Clark (q.v.) and purchased a plantation along the Mississippi River, below present-day Donaldsonville, in 1808. Died at his plantation, an apparent victim of yellow fever, October 12, 1811. C.A.B. Sources: Glenn R. Conrad, “Edward D. Turner: Soldier, Jurist, Planter, Patriot,” Louisiana History, 37 (1996): 217-225.
TURPIN, Ben, comedian. Born, New Orleans, September 1869. Became vaudeville comedian, Chicago, 1891. Portrayed character Happy Hooligan on vaudeville circuit, 1897-1914. Appeared in many early Vogue and Keystone comedies, with Keystone, 1917-1925. Later appeared in Mack Sennett films and shorts, plus several Pathé shorts. Married (1) Carrie Lemieux, (2) Babette Dietz. Died, Santa Monica, Calif., July 1, 1940; interred Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Glendale, Calif. H.C. Sources: Who Was Who in America, IV, 1968-69; Evelyn Truitt, Who Was Who on Screen; New Orleans Times-Picayune, July 2, 1940; Life, September 5, 1949.
TURPIN, Bernard “Ben,” actor and comedian. Born, Vieux Carré, New Orleans; the date of his birth is a matter of dispute; some sources indicate that he was born in 1869, while others maintain that he was born on September 17, 1874; son of Ernest Turpin, a confectionary store owner, and Sarah Buckley. Always spoke with a slight French accent and as late as the 1940s was known in the popular media as a “Louisiana Frenchman.” Married (1) Carrie Lemieux, ca. 1907; married (2) Babette Dietz. Moved as a young child to the “2000 block of Carondelet steeet,” New Orleans. Learned the confectioner’s trade at an early age. Reportedly learned to act by performing for customers while he pulled taffy in his father’s candy store. Around the age of seven, he moved with his family to New York’s Lower East Side. Left home as a teenager. Lived as a hobo in the Chicago area, 1886-1991. Responded to an advertisement for new vaudeville acts and launched his professional stage career in Chicago, 1891. Eventually worked for Sam T. Jack’s burlesque show. Developed his famous Happy Hooligan stage persona while a vaudeville performer; portrayed Happy Hooligan on the vaudeville circuit, 1897-1914. Later made a disappointing debut for the Essanay film studio of Chicago. Moved to California, ca. 1914. Subsequently employed by Mack Sennett, the “father of American screen comedy.” Was a film star for Keystone Studio of Edendale, Calif., 1916-1925. Teamed with Charlie Chaplin in several memorable comedy shorts for Sennett. Also made numerous short comedy films with Sennett studio stars Mabel Normand and Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle. Small Town Idol and Sheik of Araby (1923) are among Turpin’s most memorable films. Turpin was known for his crossed eyes, his “108s” (invariably disastrous forward flips), and his portrayals of characters who never did anything right. He is considered one of the great comedians of the silent film era. Made an honorary fellow of New Orleans Charity Hospital during a visit to the Crescent City in 1928. Visited New Orleans again in 1930 and made widely circulated comments lamenting the passing of silent movies. Played primarily bit parts during the last ten years of his life. Experienced declining health from asthma in the 1930s. Appeared in Hollywood Cavalcade, 1939. Suffered a stroke at his modest home on June 30, 1940, and died at Santa Monica, Calif., July 1, 1940; interred Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Glendale, Calif. C.A.B. Sources: New York Times, July 2, 1940; New Orleans Times-Picayune, July 2, 1940; Who Was Who in America (1968), vol. 4; Life Magazine, September 5, 1949; Al Rose, Born in New Orleans: Notables of Two Centuries (1983).
TWITCHELL (TWICHELL), Jerome, clergyman, journalist, social reformer. Born, New Brunswick, Canada (?), ca. 1819. Became a licentiate of the New Brunswick Presbytery; received as a licentiate and ordained as an evangelist by the Louisiana Presbytery. Employed as city missionary in New Orleans, January 30, 1840, where he resided for next fifteen years. Married, 1844, Orleana Rollins, of New Orleans. Her father, Dr. John Rollins, was founder and ruling elder of the Lafayette Presbyterian Church, of which son-in-law Twitchell was a pastor. Children: three sons. Twitchell’s prominent role as a proselytizer among city’s free and enslaved Negroes inspired local controversy and suspicion. At the time, the separately incorporated district known as “Lafayette City'” was reputed to be a local nest of abolitionists. In addition, Twitchell was an active contributor to the city’s Presbyterian press, including the New Orleans Protestant (1844-1846) and its successor the New Orleans Presbyterian (1847-1850). Later, he wrote for the New Orleans Picayune until his departure in 1853. Entered Brazos (Tex.) Presbytery on April 6, 1855, and later served as a pastor in Houston. Soon afterward, Twitchell was traveling alone on the steamship Nautilus, between Galveston and New Orleans, when he died on August 10, 1856, in the hurricane which destroyed Last Island. T.F.R. Sources: “Rev. Jerome Twitchell (Twichell),” MSS File Biography, Historical Foundation, Montreat, N.C.; “Mrs. O. R. Twitchell,” South-Western Presbyterian (New Orleans), XVI, No. 42, November 20, 1884; Timothy F. Reilly, “Robert L. Stanton, Abolitionist of the Old South,” Journal of Presbyterian History, LIII, No. 1 (Spring, 1975); Timothy F. Reilly, “Religious Leaders and Social Criticism in New Orleans, 1800-1861” (Ph. D. dissertation, University of Missouri at Columbia, 1972).
TWITCHELL, Marshall Harvey, carpetbagger, planter, businessman. Born Townshend, Vt., February 29, 1840; son of Harvey Daniel Twitchell and Elizabeth Scott. Education: public schools and graduated valedictorian of Leland Seminary, Townshend. Civil War service: I Company, Fourth Vermont Infantry, rose to first sergeant, fought in most of the Army of the Potomac’s major battles, severely wounded at the Wilderness; promoted to rank of captain and transferred to H. Company, 109th U. S. Colored Troops in June 1864; assigned to Freedmen’s Bureau after the war, served as the Freedmen’s Bureau agent in Sparta, Bienville Parish, La., from late 1865 to August 1866. July 24, 1866, married Adele Coleman (d. 1874) of Bienville Parish, daughter of Isaac Coleman; three children of whom only Marshall Coleman (1871-1949) survived beyond early childhood. In cooperation with Isaac Coleman, emerged as prominent cotton planter and businessman; played leading role in creation of Red River Parish in 1871 and in emergence of Coushatta from insignificant river landing to flourishing river town and parish seat. Political career as Radical Republican: member, constitutional convention of 1867-68; state senator, 1871-1878; U. S. Commissioner; president of Red River Parish Police Jury and school board. Brother and two brothers-in-law murdered by the White League in the terrible Coushatta Massacre of August 1874; Twitchell and third brother-in-law George King gunned down May 2, 1876, while crossing Red River at Coushatta; King died and Twitchell lost both arms. October 26, 1876, married childhood sweetheart Henrietta Day in Massachusetts. One child Emmus George (b. 1880). Appointed American consul at Kingston, Ontario, Canada by President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1878; held the position the rest of his life. Died, Kingston, August 21, 1905; interred Townshend, Vt. T.T. Sources: Ted Tunnell, ed., Carpetbagger from Vermont: The Autobiography of Marshall Harvey Twitchell; Ted Tunnell, Crucible of Reconstruction: War, Radicalism and Race in Louisiana, 1862-1877.
TWOMEY, Louis J., clergyman, educator, social reformer. Born, Tampa, Fla., October 5, 1905; son of Timothy J. Twomey and Annie Saverese. Education: local parochial and Jesuit schools; Georgetown University, Washington, D. C.; Loyola University of New Orleans; St. Louis University, St. Louis, Mo., with A. A., English, 1932, and M.A., Economics, 1947. Principal of Jesuit High School, Tampa, Fla., 1941-1945. Founder of Institute of Industrial Relations (later became Institute of Human Relations) at Loyola University of New Orleans, 1947, to offer non-credit courses to management and labor personnel. Directed the Institute until 1969; used it as a resource center for teaching, writing, and ciruclating information on labor problems, the challenge of communism, and racial injustice. Appointed regent of the Loyola Law School, 1948, lectured in Jurisprudence annually until 1968. Published Christ’s Blueprint for the South, 1948-1969, to apply Catholic social doctrine to contemporary social needs. Participated in the Catholic Committee of the South to foster interracial harmony, 1949 ff. Organized the Southern Regional Council for Louisiana to promote black voter registration, 1950. Represented Archbishop Joseph Francis Rummel (q.v.) before legislature of Louisiana to oppose the right-to-work bill, 1954. Wrote critical article on right-to-work legislation, Catholic Mind, September, 1954. Suported the National Agricultural Workers Union in endeavor to organize agricultural workers by seeking financial and material assistance for members, 1953. Published pamphlet How to Think About Race (1951). Co-authored with William B. Faherty, S. J., pamphlet Questions and Answers on Communism, which sold 45,000 copies, 1961. Gave radio presentations on racial injustice, “To Be Treated Like a Man,” 1958; and autobiographical address, 1963. Edited Social Order, a periodical with articles on civil rights, ecumenical sharing, nuclear disarmament, communism, economics, 1961-1963. Founded and directed the Inter-American Center at Loyola University to train younger leadership groups of Latin America in ideas, ideals, tactics and techniques of building democratic social institutions, 1963-1969. Appointed to National Citizens Committee for Community Relations by President Lyndon Johnson, 1964; to National Manpower Advisory Committee, 1965; to National Civil Rights Commission, 1965. Died, New Orleans, October 5, 1969; interred Jesuit Cemetery, Grand Coteau, La. J.R.P. Source: John R. Payne, “A Jesuit Search for Social Justice, the Public Career of Louis J. Twomey” (Ph. D. dissertation, University of Texas at Austin, 1976).
TYLER, Ephraim David, poet, author, educator. Born, Grand Cane, La., January 10, 1884. Education: Coleman Academy, Gibsland, La.; finished manual training from Tuskegee Institute, Tuskegee, Alabama; Leland College. Taught manual training in Mississippi (Piney Woods), 1924-1926. Married Emily C. Barney, 1926. One daughter. Named Poet Laureate by Gov. Earl K. Long (q.v.) in 1951 and affectionately called the “rustic poet.” Encouraged to develop his talent by President O. L. Coleman of Coleman College. Honored by the M. W. Universal Grand Lodge AF and AM of Louisiana, 1967. Public reading of his poem by actor Ossie Davis on television, 1968. His poems about black life style advocate citizenship, justice and love. Notable poems include the following: “What Time Is It?”, “Money Can’t Do Everything”, “Ole ‘Uncle Tom’ Is Dead”, “Color Does Not Make the Man”. Religion: Baptist and member of the Evergreen Baptist Church, Shreveport, La. Died, June 30, 1969. C.T. Sources: Archie E. Perkins, ed., Who’s Who in Colored Louisiana (1930), p. 27; “The Negro in Louisiana,” Sepia Socialite, (April, 1942); Shreveport Sun, July, 1969.