Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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PENIERES, Jean Augustin de, French statesman, born in Tulle in 1762; died in Mobile, Alabama, in October, 1820. He served for several years as an officer in the body-guards of Louis XVI. but, having been elected to the legislative assembly, and afterward to the convention, by the city of Tulle, he became a formidable opponent to the king. He always took his seat among the Jacobins, and in January, 1793, voted, after a passionate speech, for the death of Louis XVI. without delay or appeal to the people. In the following February he made a motion for the expulsion of Marat from the convention, which was lost by an overwhelming majority, but Penicles was saved from the resentment of the revolutionist by his friends, who pleaded his insanity. He continued to denounce the terrorists, and contributed to the success of the reaction of 27 and 28 July, 1794. He was elected to the council of five hundred in 1796, was a member of the Tribunat from 1799 till 1802, and a deputy to the Corps Legislatif in 1807-'11, and during the hundred days. After the second restoration of Louis XVIII., in 1815, he came to the United States, and founded in Mobile, Alabama, an academy for young men and a college for ladies, which became fashionable. He also afforded help to Baron Lallemand (q. v.) and other French exiles in the foundation of the Champ d'asile in Texas, and became interested in the operations of the corsair Lafitte (q. v.), to whom he furnished the means to carry on his operations after his expulsion from Grande Terre in 1817. In the following year he obtained a grant of land in Indian territory, and established there a colony of French exiles, which prospered at the outset, but declined after his death, and was finally abandoned. He also acquired vast tracts of land in Missouri. He married for his second wife a lady of New Orleans, and their descendants contested in the state courts for many years for land that is included to-day in the limits of the city of St. Louis. His notes and manuscripts found their way into the Paris library, and Henri Gamier found among them the materials for a "Histoire de ablissements fond& dans l'Amerique du Nord, en Louisiane et au Texas, par les exilds de la grande armee" (2 vols., Paris, 1832).
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