PATOULET, JEAN-BAPTISTE, secretary to Jean Talon, intendant of New France 1665–72; d. 8 April 1695 at Dunkirk.
He came to the colony with Talon in 1665, at a salary of 1,200 livres a year, one-tenth as much as Talon received. In 1667 he was sent back to France on the king’s service and returned to Quebec two years later, during the intendancy of Claude de Boutroue. His talents were much appreciated by Boutroue who gave him the important task of drafting the dispatches to the minister of Marine. In 1670 he was again in France and was appointed a naval commissary. The following year he was sent by Colbert to report on conditions in Acadia and from there he proceeded to Quebec. In 1671, Talon, when asking the minister to be allowed to return to France for reasons of health, stated that Patoulet was competent to take over the intendant’s duties, “provided that he accepted and followed the advice that [Talon] would give to him.” This recommendation was not acted on and Patoulet returned to France with Talon in 1672. He was then appointed comptroller at the Atlantic naval base at Rochefort where he received intensive training in all aspects of naval administration by the intendant of the base, Colbert de Terron. During these years his advice on Canadian affairs was, on Occasion, solicited by the minister. His views were always judicious and sometimes ran counter to the minister’s prejudices, as, for example, when he defended Bishop Laval* and the Jesuits against the charge levelled at them by the governor of the colony, Buade de Frontenac, that they encroached on the civil authority. In 1679 he was appointed to the important post of intendant of the French West Indies, where he endeavoured to stimulate trade between the islands and Canada. In 1683 he was recalled to France to become intendant of Dunkirk. Phélypeaux de Pontchartrain, minister of Marine, wrote of him in 1694: “I have observed that he is a completely honest man, good tempered and agreeable. He understands the navy very well, does his duty conscientiously, is respected and liked by both officers and seamen and in general by all who are under his orders.” He was, in fact, an excellent example of the type of men brought into the government service under Colbert, their exceptional talents being, in no small measure, responsible for the resurgence of France under Louis XIV. He died at Dunkirk on 8 April 1695.
Correspondance de Talon, APQ Rapport, 1930–31, 150, Talon au ministre, Québec, 31 octobre 1671. BN, MS, Clairambault, 868, f.385; Mélanges Colbert, 164, ff.72, 185; 165, f.188; 273, f.259; 287, f.179. Chapais, Talon.
Cite This Article
W. J. Eccles, “PATOULET, JEAN-BAPTISTE,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed December 18, 2013, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/patoulet_jean_baptiste_1E.html.
|Author of Article:||W. J. Eccles|
|Title of Article:||PATOULET, JEAN-BAPTISTE|
|Publication Name:||Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1|
|Publisher:||University of Toronto/Université Laval|
|Year of publication:||1966|
|Year of revision:||1966|
|Access Date:||December 18, 2013|