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DRUILLON DE MACÉ, PIERRE-JACQUES, officer in the colonial regular troops; baptized 9 Sept. 1727 in the parish of Saint-Solenne at Blois, France, son of Pierre-Jacques Druillon, lieutenant-general for the bailiwick of Blois, and Marie Bachaddelebat; m. 1769 Marie-Anne Petit de Thoizy at Blois; d. there 26 June 1780.

Members of the Druillon family had held high judicial office in Blois for 200 years. Pierre-Jacques Druillon de Macé broke with tradition in 1749 by abandoning advanced legal studies for a military career. Through the influence of his relative Roland-Michel Barrin* de La Galissonière, commandant general of New France, he obtained an appointment in the colonial regulars at Louisbourg, Île Royale (Cape Breton Island), as second ensign. He was subsequently transferred to Canada, where there was still some opportunity for officers of the colonial troops to learn by direct experience the arts of gunnery and fortification. Posted in 1752 to Fort Niagara (near Youngstown, N.Y.), he was sent the following year to undertake the construction of Fort de la Presqu’île (Erie, Pa) and Fort de la Rivière au Bœuf (Waterford, Pa) under the general supervision of François-Marc-Antoine Le Mercier. In 1754 he participated in the building of Fort Duquesne (Pittsburgh, Pa).

Druillon is remembered chiefly for his part in the Jumonville affair. One of the party under Joseph Coulon* de Villiers de Jumonville which was attacked on 28 May 1754 near present-day Jumonville, Pa, by George Washington’s force, he was wounded and made prisoner. Druillon and the 20 other survivors of the French detachment were taken first to Winchester, then to Williamsburg, Virginia. Governor Robert Dinwiddie rejected repeated bids for their release, though he agreed to make their lot easier by allowing them to purchase clothing from local merchants. Druillon later claimed that he had been repeatedly interrogated and accused of espionage. Under the terms of Washington’s surrender of Fort Necessity (near Farmington, Pa) to the French on 3 July 1754, Druillon and his men were supposed to be exchanged for two British captains, Robert Stobo* and Jacob Van Braam [see Louis Coulon* de Villiers]. Sharp disagreements precluded the exchange, however, and the British hostages were sent to Quebec, while Druillon and his party were moved to Alexandria, Virginia. After having been detained in Virginia almost a year, Druillon and three others were put aboard merchant vessels at Hampton. Druillon landed at Bristol, England, on 10 June 1755 and made his way to the French embassy in London. Soon his complaints to the French ambassador of maltreatment during his detention in Virginia and his voyage to England became part of the accelerated Anglo-French diplomatic war of 1755–56. Druillon himself crossed to France to report to the minister of Marine.

Following his return to Canada in 1756, Druillon served mainly in the Lake Champlain sector. As a full ensign, he participated in Rigaud de Vaudreuil’s campaign around Lac Saint-Sacrement (Lake George) during the winter of 1756–57 and saw action at the siege and capture of Fort William Henry (also called Fort George; now Lake George, N.Y.). He spent the winter of 1757–58 on leave in France and the summer and fall of 1758 at a forward post between Fort Carillon (Ticonderoga, N.Y.) and Fort Lydius (also called Fort Edward; now Fort Edward, N.Y.). On 1 Jan. 1759 he was promoted lieutenant and assigned to the construction of works at he aux Noix (in the Richelieu River), Laprairie, and Châteauguay. Subsequently, and until November 1759, he commanded 200 men in a camp between La Présentation (Oswegatchie; now Ogdensburg, N.Y.) and Fort Lévis (east of Prescott, Ont.). After taking part in the battle of Sainte-Foy in April 1760, he was transferred to Île Saint-Hélène, where he was serving when Montreal was surrendered in September.

Upon his return to France in 1760, Druillon retired to Blois and remained there until his death. He received a yearly pension of 300 livres for his services but, despite good references and repeated requests from 1761 to 1775, he was unable to obtain the cross of Saint-Louis and the additional pension he desired.

F. J. Thorpe

AD, Loir-et-Cher (Blois), État civil, Saint-Honoré, 27 juin 1780; Saint-Solenne, 9 sept. 1727, 18 sept. 1769. AN, Col., B, 96, f.298v; 102, ff.91–92v; 105, f.211; 108, f.537; D1, 3, f.90v; D2C, 4, f.158; 48/1, f.161; 48/2, ff.236v, 312v; E, 139 (dossier Druillon). Archives du ministère des Affaires étrangères (Paris), Corr. politique, Angleterre, 439, ff.194, 197, 214–16, 221–23, 232–33. Coll. des manuscrits de Levis (Casgrain), I–VIII, X. [Robert Dinwiddie], The official records of Robert Dinwiddie . . . (2v., Richmond, Va., 1883). NYCD (O’Callaghan and Fernow), X, 264–65. Papiers Contrecœur (Grenier), 11, 19, 42, 46, 157, 188, 257, 260, 262, 271, 305. [George Washington], The writings of George Washington, ed. W. C. Ford (14v., New York and London, 1889–[93]), I, 76–89. L.-C. Bergevin et Alexandre Dupré, Histoire de Blois (2v., Blois, France, 1846–47), II, 44, 60, 62–64, 67, 189–90, 198–99, 309, 633–34. É.-Z. Massicotte, “Pierre-Jacques Druillon, seigneur de Macé,” BRH, XXVI (1920), 125–26.

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F. J. Thorpe, “DRUILLON DE MACÉ, PIERRE-JACQUES,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 4, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed May 26, 2024, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/druillon_de_mace_pierre_jacques_4E.html.

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Permalink:   http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/druillon_de_mace_pierre_jacques_4E.html
Author of Article:   F. J. Thorpe
Publication Name:   Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 4
Publisher:   University of Toronto/Université Laval
Year of publication:   1979
Year of revision:   1979
Access Date:   May 26, 2024