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  • From France to New York - The Story of Three Sisters Named Marie

    Marian S. Henry

    When lands in central New York State became available for purchase after the Revolutionary War, a flood of settlers poured into the region. Against the background of this mass migration a tiny drama played out in the south central part of the state involving French aristocrats driven from their homeland during the French Revolution. In the style of traditional immigration stories, but with a twist, I relate this tale of three Maries who sailed to Philadelphia to start a new life. These were the three wealthy d'Ohet sisters, Marie Jaene (d'Ohet) d'Autremont, Marie Genevieve (d'Ohet) LeFevre, and Marie Claudine d'Ohet. My tale also includes brief mention of a few non-noble characters for decoration, namely Victor du Pont de Nemours and Capt. Joseph Juliand. My information comes from several sources123456 and is, by turns, ambiguous, contradictory, or wrong. In the process of attempting to corroborate these "family myths" with readily available primary records, it becomes apparent that the events were not as tidy as related in these county histories.

    The Three Maries
    Unless a specific source is given, the information comes from one or more of the six references noted in the previous paragraph. Most of the substantiating data are available on various county web pages within the New York and Pennsylvania GenWeb collection.

    Marie Jaene d'Ohet (1745 - August 29, 1809 or January 28, 1810) married Hubert d'Autremont, February 3 or 5, 1770, and bore him three sons, Alexander Hubert, Louis Paul, and Augustus Francois Cecile. Hubert d'Autremont was guillotined early in the French Revolution.

    Marie Genevieve d'Ohet (1752 - August 23, 1834) married Antonine Bartholemy Louie LeFevre (? - February 1, 1830). They had two sons (Alexander and one who died young) and two daughters (Cecilia and Augustine).

    Of the three Maries, the least is known about Marie Claudine d'Ohet (1758 - January 10, 1810). She was a nun in France whose convent had been destroyed during the revolution. She moved to Nantes then sailed to New York in 1806 and came to her sister's home in Angelica. She died there January 10, 1810, age 52.

    The Voyage
    On June 19, 1792, Marie Jaene d'Autremont, her three sons, and her brother-in-law LeFevre were among a group of refugees who sailed with Charles Felix de Boulogne from Le Harve to Philadelphia. According to tradition, LeFevre's passport allowed only himself, one daughter, and one son to leave the country. The son died shortly before sailing, so the other daughter was smuggled aboard in his stead. Marie Genevieve LeFevre and their remaining son, Alexander7, followed two years later.

    I searched for Boulogne, d'Autremont, LeFevre, and DuPont in Filby's Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, but found no record of a 1792 voyage from France to Philadelphia. There is, however, an arrival in 1796 of Louis Paul d'Autremont8.

    The Butternut Settlement
    Charles Felix de Boulogne9 is variously termed an agent of the land speculators or the leader of the colony in the sources cited. Through his efforts the group acquired a tract of nearly 25 square miles, purchased in 1792 from patentees Malachi Treat and the ubiquitous Robert Morris. The best estimate of the location of this land is the juncture of Butternut Creek and the Unadilla River in Chenango Co. This junction is today in the town of Greene, about two miles north of exit 9 on U.S. Interstate 88. Smith (ref 6) lists LeFevre and Boulogne (but not d'Autremont) as new arrivals in 1793, as well as Shamont, Bravo, DuVernet, and Obre. Other sources say the group, headed by Boulogne, arrived in October 1792.

    This first "Butternut" settlement was not successful. Several sources speak of aristocrats unable to cope with building shelter, planting crops, and spending a pitiful winter in a drafty one-room log cabin. Their hardships were compounded by a questionable title to the land, their inability to make payments, and the death of Boulogne. All of these circumstances led to them leaving in 1794 or 1795 to join a more successful French settlement farther south in Bradford County, PA, called Asylum.

    The Asylum Settlement and the Return to France
    On the Bradford County, PA web page, I found a listing for taxables in 1796 containing both Widow d'Autremont and Anthony B. Lafevre, as well as Oliver Dodge. In 1797, middle son Alexander Hubert d'Autremont (March 12, 1776 - April 4 or August 1857), married Abigail, daughter of Major Oliver Dodge of Terrytown, four miles below Asylum on the Susquehanna River.

    Meanwhile in France, Napoleon staged a successful coup d'etat in November of 1799. In 1800, he granted amnesty to the aristocrats who fled during the Revolution and promised the restoration of their estates. Many of the émigrés returned to France. Louis Paul d'Autremont (November 7, 1770 - 1860), eldest son of Marie, returned to Paris and took a wife. He died in 1840, leaving one daughter who married a man named Bridet. Her two sons took their mother's maiden name, d'Autremont by decree of the Emperor in 1852.

    Marie Jaene d'Autremont
    Marie Jaene d'Autremont reportedly returned to the Butternut location in Chenango County with her two younger sons. However I found no evidence of her presence. The 1800 federal census for Chenango County does contain a record for Alexander Dutrimone in the town of Greene (see table 1). Marie Jaeane d'Autremont would have been 55 at the time of the census, her son Alexander would have been 24, and her son Augustus Francois Cecile would have been 17. The census information shows that, while this household could consist of Alexander, his wife Abigail, his daughter, his brother Augustus, and one other unknown male, the age of his mother does not match up. I also found no d'Autremont, searching several spelling variants, in the 1800 census for Pennsylvania.

    In 1806, Marie Jaene apparently bought land from Philip Church on the western frontier on the Genesee River in Allegany County, town of Angelica, where she died10.

    The d'Autremont/Dautrement Sons in Angelica
    Records for the two younger d'Autremont sons in Allegany County are relatively plentiful. The 1808 list of freeholders for the town of Angelica lists both Alexander and Augustus Dautrement and here they seemed to settle. The naturalization of Augustus (1783 - 1860) is recorded in court proceedings of June 1809. The Allegany County web site contains a list of jurors that served between 1807 and 1810. Alexander served October 26, 1808, June 9, 1809, October 24, 1809, January 16, 1810, and June 26, 1810. Augustus served October 26, 1808 and October 23, 1810. The 1810 census (table 1) lists Alexander Deutremont and Augustus Dautimonte in Angelica. Alexander would be about 44 years of age, his younger brother about 37.

    Table 1. Extracts from 1800 and 1810 Federal Census Records, New York State

    Free white persons, including heads of families

    Year Name Town County M under 10 M



    over 45
    F under 10 F 10-16 F 16-26 F 26-45 F over 45
    1800 Alexander Dutrimone Greene Chenango - - 2 1 - 1 - 1 - -
    1810 Alexander Deutremont Angelica Allegany 2 1 - 1 - 2 - - 1 -
    1810 Augustus Dautrmonte Angelica Allegany - - 1 - - - - - - -


    Minard (ref 1), lists children of Alexander Dautremont and Abigail Dodge (table 2). From this list we can account for all persons in the 1810 census record for Alexander except one male between the age of 10 and 16. I also found the 1820 record, which contains two unknown males between the age of 16 and 26. Since Alexander is listed in the 1850 census as a 75 year old farmer11, it is likely that these "extra" young men were farm workers. The eldest daughter Adeline is missing in 1820. She would have been 20 and could have been married to Ithemer Smith. There is a listing for Ithemer Smith in the town of Covington, Genesee Co.

    Table 2. Children of Alexander Dautremont and Abigail Dodge (ref 1)

    Name Birthdate Spouse
    Adeline 12 Jul 1800 Ithemer Smith
    Amelia du Pont 28 Apr 1803 Hugh Magee
    Louis Paul 28 Jan 1805 Hannah Magee
    Victor du Pont 16 Aug 1807 Isabella Common
    Caroline 8 Dec 1809 Charles Brundage
    Janet 30 Nov 1814 Ephriam Smith
    Charles 26 June 1818 Sarah Collins
    Alexander 2 Apr 1821 Diana Howard
    Virginia 30 July 1824 unmarried
    Sophia Church 3 Aug 1829 Lucian P. Wetherby


    Auguste Francois Cecile d'Autremont married Sarah Ann Stewart in 1816. One source says she was of New Castle, Delaware, and that Augustus d'Autremont moved to Delaware to work for the DuPont brothers (see below). She died in 1840 and he in 1860. They had the following children, which included two sets of twins:

    Table 3. Children of Augustus Dautremont and Sarah Ann Stewart (ref 1)

    Name Birthdate Spouse
    Matilda 1 Jun 1817  
    Josephine 17 Jan 1820 Harden P. Mather
    Augustus, Jr 29 Feb 1822 Adaline Mather, Mary Hubbard
    Mary Amanda 27 Jul 1824  
    Francis Paul 27 Jul 1824  
    Caroline Elisabeth 27 Apr 1827 Ralph Taylor
    Victorine 17 Jun 1830  
    Evelline Ellen 17 Apr 1833  
    Glodine 16 Dec 1835  
    Sarah Andrina 16 Dec 1835 Samuel A. Farman


    The 1820 census record for an "Agustus" Dautrimont is consistent with husband, wife, and two youngest daughters plus five other males and one female. Agustus turns out to be an innkeeper (1850 census12) so these "extras" may have possibly been guests at the inn or staff.

    Also readily found in the 1850 census are the following married children of Alexander Dautremont:

    • Victor, 42, a painter, Isabella, 39, born in England, and three children
    • Charles, 32, merchant, Sarah, 28
    • Adelline, 34, Ithemar Smith, 47, farmer born in Conn., six children
    • Amelia, 47, Hugh Magee, 50, inn keeper in Hornells, Steuben Co.
    • Sophia, 21, Lucian P. Wetherly, 29, a lawyer

    Marie Genevieve (d'Ohet) LeFevre
    Anthony LeFevre did not return to France, but moved his family across the river from the now-abandoned Asylum settlement to Lime Hill where he kept an inn. In support of this, I find in the list of taxables for 1812-13 the names Anthony Lafevre and Alexander Lafevre. The elder daughter Cecilia married John Prevost in 1815 and died in Wyoming Co., PA in 1876. Augustine, the younger daughter, married John Huff; they had no children. Anthony Lefevre died February 1, 1830, and his wife, Marie Genevieve, died August 23, 1834.

    The du Pont Connection
    Victor du Pont de Nemours, son of Pierre Samuel du Pont de Nemours, bought 500 acres in the Church tract in 1806, the first deed recorded in the county. He became active in local politics and opened a store. Some connection with the d'Autremont family is found in the names of the children. Alexander d'Autremont named a daughter Amelia du Pont (b. 1803), and a sonVictor du Pont (b. 1807). Augustus d'Autremont named a daughter Victorine (b. 1830). Victor du Pont is listed as one of the freeholders in Angelica in 1808. The store reportedly did not prosper and Victor quarreled with the local squire, Philip Church. Victor is said to have left Angelica in 1809 to join his brother Irenee in Delaware. This tale, however, became tangled when I looked deeper.

    The website for the DuPont Company gives a few facts regarding the founding of the firm. On July 19, 1802, Eleuthere Irenee du Pont de Nemours purchased property on the Brandywine River and began construction of Eleutherian Mills. On May 1, 1804, DuPont began the manufacture and sale of gunpowder. By 1811 DuPont was the largest manufacturer of gunpowder in America.

    However, in 1810, both brothers were involved as plaintiffs in court cases in Angelica (Table 4). The 1820 federal census for Delaware lists an E.J. DuPont in New Castle County, but no Victor. It seems more likely that the two brothers jointly launched two separate business ventures, one in New York State and one in Delaware. Were it not for the vagaries of business acumen the DuPont name might have flourished in New York instead of Delaware.

    Table 4. Court Cases, Town of Angelica, Allegany Co., NY

    Plaintiff Defendant Date Verdict
    E. J. DuPont Cornelius Borgardus Jun 1810 def. confessed damages to $51.67
    Eleuthere I. DuPont Luke Goodspeed Oct 1810 clerk assessed $9.11 in cause
    Victor DuPont Silas Knight Asahel Franklin Jun 1810 def. confessed damages to $48.58

    Capt. Joseph Juliand - the Man Who Bought Butternut

    Clarke4 tells of a Captain Joseph "Juliard," a native of Lyons, who studied medicine, gave it up, and became commander of a merchant ship. On a visit to America he spent some time in New Haven and married "a girl" from that town. While living near Greenfield, Mass., he heard of a French colony in southern New York, and arrived as the "Butternut" colony in Chenango Co. was breaking up. He then bought up the entire site of the village of Greene. In support, Smith (ref 6) lists a "Capt. Joseph Juliand, born Lycos, France, joined French Village in 1796."

    Although there is no Joseph Juliard recorded in the 1790 census records of Massachusetts or Connecticut, there is a Joseph Juliand in the 1800 census of Chenango Co., town of Greene.

    M under 10


    M over 45 F
    under 10
    over 45
    1 2 1 - 1 1 - 1 - -

    The 1850 census record (see table 5) for Greene, Chenango Co., contains the name of Hannah Juliand, 87, born in Connecticut, living in the household of Joseph Juliand, 53, merchant, born in New York. It is tempting to identify Hannah as the "girl" Capt. Juliand married in New Haven, and to name the other Juliands -- Joseph, age 53, Lewis, age 46, George, age 45, and Frederick, age 42-- as his sons. However, if so, her age does not agree with the 1800 census record. But there is a female, age 60-70, listed with Frederick Juliand in the 1840 census13. This woman would be 20-30 in 1800, which is consistent with the 1800 record. This suggests that her husband, Joseph Juliand, may have died before 1840.

    Table 5. 1850 Federal Census Records, Town of Greene, Chenango Co, NY

    Name Age Sex Occupation Birthplace
    Joseph Juliand 53 M merchant NY
    A.M. Juliand 45 F   NY
    Hannah Juliand 87 F   Conn.
    Anna M. Juliand 14 F   NY
    J. E. Juliand 6 M   NY
    Lewis Juliand14 46 M farmer NY
    C. E. Juliand 40 F   NY
    Wm. L Juliand 12 M   NY
    Jos. B. Juliand 8 M   NY
    E. C. Juliand 2 F   NY
    Joseph Bulton 76 M merchant NY
    Frederick Juliand15 42 M merchant NY
    Catharine Juliand 39 F   NY
    Jno. R. Juliand 14 M   NY
    Sarah J. Juliand 4 F   NY
    F. H. Juliand 6/12 M   NY
    George Juliand 45 M farmer NY
    Charlotte Juliand 31 F   NY
    Charles Juliand 13 M   NY
    Henry Juliand 6 M   NY

    There is a final Connecticut connection. Living in the household of Lewis Juliand is one Joseph Bulton, 75, a merchant born in Connecticut. This may be the Joseph Bulton listed in the 1800 federal census in the town of Sangersfield, Chenango Co (3 M under 10; 1 M, 16-25; 2 F under 10; 1 F, 16-25). Perhaps this Joseph Bulton is living in 1850 in the house of his married daughter and his son-in-law, Lewis Juliand. Perhaps Lewis Juliand's son, "Jos. B," is Joseph Bulton Juliand, named after his grandfather.

    1. Allegany County and its People, John S. Minard, W.A. Fergusson & Co., Alfred, NY, 1896.
    2. Pioneer Profiles, Arch Merrill, 1957, Rochester, NY.
    3. History of the State of New York in Ten Volumes, vol 5, edited by Alexander C. Flick; Conquering the Wilderness, Columbia University Press, New York, 1934.
    4. Émigrés in the Wilderness, T. Wood Clarke, New York, 1941.
    5. A Short History of Asylum Pennsylvania, Founded in 1793 by the French Exiles in America, J. W. Ingham, 1916.
    6. History of Chenango & Madison Counties, NY, James H. Smith, 1880.
    7. Alexander LeFevre reportedly enlisted in the army in the War of 1812 and died of sickness at Carlisle, Pa.
    8. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, First Edition, Edited by P. Wm. Filby, p. 24.
    9. Boulogne is said to have drowned while attempting to ford Loyal Sock Creek at Hillsgrove, Pa on July 20,1796. The water was very high at the time. His body was recovered and buried at Hillsgrove, Pa.
    10. This is the so-called "Church tract," a six by twenty-six mile tract on the Genesee River named for Philip Church who acquired the land in 1800. As an aside, it is possible that the d'Autremont and Church families were well acquainted. Both were intimately acquainted with both LaFayette and Tallyrand. Two points here also hint at a close relationship: first, Alexander d'Autremont named his youngest daughter Sophia Church; second, Philip Church married Anna Matilda, eldest daughter of Gen. Walter Stewart of Philadelphia and Augustus d'Autremont married a Sarah Ann Stewart.
    11. Also listed in his household is Abigail Dautremont, age 79, born in Conn., presumably his wife Abigail Dodge.
    12. Apparently his eldest son, Augustus Jr., followed in his father's profession. His occupation is also that of innkeeper. Glodine, who would be age 14, is more likely dead than married.
    13. All four Juliand households are listed in the 1840 census in Chenango Co. None besides Frederick contains any other person over the age of 50.
    14. In birth records on the web site of Chenango Co. I find the birth of Emma C. Juliand, b. April 12, 1847 to Lewis and Cornellia Juliand.
    15. In birth records on the web site of Chenango Co. I find the birth of Frederick H. Juliand b March 30, 1850 to Frederick and Catharine Juliand. 

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