Julien LeRoy I, 1730–1779
Julien or (Julian) LeRoy was born in 1730, the son of Jean-Jacques LeRoy and Catherine Larat, both born in Mobile, Alabama. At the age of twenty-five, in Mobile, Julien married Marie Barbe Saucier, the nineteen-year-old daughter of Henry Saucier and Barbe LeCroix.
Julien was a trader and merchant. He was one of the earliest founders of St. Louis, arriving in the same boat as Auguste Chouteau in 1749–50. He built several houses in the “village” and was considered a prominent man. Once, Julien, having just finished his own house, sold it to another so that family could have somewhere to live.
On 12 August 1766, two years after the founding of St. Louis, the Spanish government granted Julien a forty-arpent strip [about forty acres], in what was known as the Common Fields. The grant was lost, cause unknown, and the land then merged back into the Common Fields.
In 1767, Julien LeRoy sold his house and lot, which faced la Grande Rue and ran back to the bluff above the Mississippi.
A legendary story that reveals his character was published in St. Louis: An Informal History of the City and its People, 1764. On page 46, it tells of Julien Roy being pursued by an Indian. When the Indian was gaining on him, Roy shot the Indian in the jaw, severely wounding him. Instead of killing the Indian, Julien tore off his shirt, binding the bleeding, shattered jaw. The Indian, grateful for Roy’s kindness, led him safely through the attackers to the outskirts of town. Julien’s son-in-law, Francis Hebert, was fatally wounded in the same attack.
Several of LeRoy’s children moved to the Carondelet area where their descendants still reside. They dropped the “Le” from their name, simply calling themselves “Roy.” There is no record of Julien’s death in Missouri, so he may have died elsewhere.
Julien and Marie Barbe had eight known children:
Written by Carol Stelmachowicz Feldman
© 2019, St. Louis Genealogical Society
Memorial stone showing Julien LeRoy and his descendant, Carol
Photo in the collection of Carol Stelmachowicz-Feldman
Used with permission
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