A Blupete Biography Page

Joseph Robineau de Villebon

Joseph, the second of seven sons, was born in Quebec and was sent to France for an education. Villebon's education was capped, while in France, with a commission in the French army. Though it is not clear, it seems he spent a few years in France with his military duties. He came back home to Quebec in the late 1670s or early 1680s having received a promotion to the rank of captain. By 1686 he was stationed at Port Royal, first under Governor Perrot and then Governor Meneval.

Villebon spent the winter of 1689/90 back in Paris and was sent out to Port Royal in the spring, leaving La Rochelle on May 4, 1690. On arriving at Port Royal on June 14th he was to find Port Royal in ruins, the church and other buildings had been destroyed, the town had been plundered and the French governor, Meneval, to whom, presumably, he was to report, carried away to Boston as a prisoner of Phips.

Villebon had established himself; first, in 1690, at Jemseg, then at Nashwaak (just across from modern day Fredericton), and then at Fort St. John, where, having just located himself there, he died in 1700.

As to the extravagance of Villebon, we have the contemporary account of De Goutin:

"The Sieur de Villebon has caused to be used up 112 pounds of gunpowder in the bonfire to celebrate the peace [Treaty of Ryswick, 1697], while drinking healths to his mistresses, and that he and the Sieur Martel, his son-in-law, became drunk while so doing."
What else might we expect of Villebon, being a rough colonial diamond, polished, but only at its edges. He was the man for the job and his superiors knew it.


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Peter Landry
2012 (2020)