David Latourrette

The Father of Jean Latourrette (b1651- 1652 – d July 1726) was David, not Henri.


The following is a summary of what the author has been able to gather from several sources of the history of Jean Latourrette's father David in Osse, Bearn (now Osse-en-Aspe, France).

It is amazing that the hoaxes from the 19th century about Jean Latourrette (b.1651-1652*) at Osse, Béarn and (d. July 1726) at Fresh Kills, Staten Island) continue to result in his father being identified as a Henri, rather than David (Osse, Bearn ca 1625-1697).

* Because Jean indicated he was 55 years old in what has been called the 1706 Census of Staten Island, it has been assumed he was born in 1651. However, in a recent article in the Record of the NYG&B, it has been determined that the census may have been taken in 1707. So, Jean may have been born in 1651 or 1652.

In postings on http://genforum.genealogy.com/latourette/ , Mr. Robert Hoadley Latourette and I have completely demolished the hoax that Jean was a count and that his father was named Henri. See:






Also, these tales and hoaxes are shown to be completely false on this webpage under "Tales, Fables and Hoaxes" where some of these articles are updated with more corrections of misrepresentations of facts and the creation of non-existing facts (out-right lies), and other articles have been added.

Yet, I continue to receive genealogical charts from American descendants of Jean Latourrette (original spelling) which lists, generally in a vague fashion as in the hoaxes that his father was Henri.

My visit to Osse (now Osse-en-Aspe) in October of 2010 with my son Marc invoked much laughter (and disbelief) from our friends in the Aspe Valley in which Osse is located when I told them that there were still American descendants of Jean Latourrette, particularly from his son Henry (born 1708) living in Oregon, who believe his father was a Henri, he was a count and that the Latourrettes originally came from Italy. To make my point real, they quickly pointed out that during a visit from an American Latourette from the East Coast in the spring of 2010, he had said that they came from Italy and was quickly corrected.

I am also amazed that the notion of Jean's father was a Henri comes from people who have purchased my monograph Jean Latourrette and Pierre Peiret: Huguenot Refugees, Their Roots in Osse, Bearn. Although I clearly trace Jean's origin in the monograph (Chapter 1) to David and Magdeleine Latourrette (b. ca 1630- d. 1696)and mention Jean's siblings, Jacob (b. ca 1650-d. between 1716-24 **) and Marie (b. ca 1661- d.1731), they still have Henri as Jean's father. Apparently, they didn't even look at the pictures of David's signature in the monograph on pages 46a and 46b from 1660, December 2, 1668, May 29, 1677 and July 22, 1694.(See on this website "Signatures of Latourrettes")

* There is an entry by the local priest in 1705 of her death in the Osse Catholic Church’s records that likely was not available earlier when it was thought her death was in 1696. The church records are now available digitally from the archives in Pau.

**There are no entries in the Osse Catholic Church’s record for 1716-24, yet it is known from earlier entries Jacob is alive before 1716, but not after 1724. The church records are now available digitally from the archives in Pau.

The History of David Latourrette of Osse: Church Elder, Notaire and Abbe Laique d'Osse

Let us look at what very scholarly French genealogists, who are related to the Latourrettes of Osse-en-Aspe, say about the genealogy of Jean Latourrette's family. I have added insights about David from Alfred Cadier's book and a detailed examination of the Registers of the Protestant temple of Osse for 1665-1685, as well as a number of other sources. (See citations below.)

David Latourrette was born in Osse about 1625. Osse legend suggests David was born in the Latourrette-Pon house, built around 1616 (date over front entrance) which is on the west side of the village near a bridge which crosses the Larricq, a stream that flows southeast through Osse to the Aspe River. The original Latourrette house in Osse, at one time referred to as the Latourrette-Casamayou house, appears to date back to around 1569 when Osse was destroyed and rebuilt. The house was completely rebuilt around 1875 on the original foundation containing graves from the period after 1685 when Protestants were forced to bury their dead under houses and barns. For descendants in America of Jean Latourrette (b 1651-52, Osse- d July 1726 Fresh Kills, Staten Island) who go to Osse, ask for the Maison Mayerau, which is what the villagers now call the maison because the house passed to an older sister of a Latourrette-Casamayou who married a Mayerau. The Mayerau house was sold to an English couple around 2002-3 who planned to come to Osse for vacations. As of March 24, 2011, the house was for sale at 265,000 Euros or approximately $371,000 at exchange rates current at the time. It is a very attractive house, which can be found on this webpage in the section labeled "Tour of Osse," along with the Latourrette-Pon house. (The Mayerau house was purchased by Mrs. Laurence Guay who came from Paris with a daughter to be near her parents who had a summer house in Osse, but lived the winter months in Pau. Madame Guay was an owner of a restaurant in Paris named the Petit Tour. She is an antique dealer and launched into some major renovations of the house, which included many historic records and antiques from the Latourrette-Casamayou ownership.)

David, who died in Osse in 1697 at about age 72, married his wife Magdeleine about 1648. His spouse, born about 1630, died in 1705. David is mentioned frequently by Alfred Cadier in his history of Protestantism in Osse. (Le Béarn Protestant, 2003, a new edition of histoire de l'église réformée de la vallée d'Aspe, 1892.) David's name also appears frequently in the Registers of the Protestant Consistory of Osse, 1665-1685 (available at the Center for the Study of Béarnaise Protestantism at Pau University, Pau, France).

David and Magdeleine had at least three children :

Jacob (b.1650- d. 1716-24) married in 1674 Catherine Salenave (born 1655). Jacob remained in Osse after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685 and was an attorney or « avocat » (advocate) appearing before the King's regional court, referred to as the Parliament of Pau. The Parliament consisted of the King's representatives, not elected representatives of the people. Contrary to the 20th century count hoax circulated by Oregon Latourrette descendants and addressed in a posting noted above, Jacob was not the « president » of the King's court, but an « avocat » who frequently defended the interests of Protestants before the court. See


This posting is repeated on this webpage in an updated version 'The Blason (Coat of Arms) of Jacob de la Tourette. It also should be noted that Jacob appeared as an avocat with Jean Laclède (his brother-in-law) before the Parliament of Pau to defend the historic rights of the inhabitants of the Aspe Valley under the Fors de Béarn when challenged by Louis XIV.

Jacob's lineage represents the main Latourrette branch of the family in Osse in the 18th and 19th centuries, from which several people now living who have contributed to the family's genealogy can be identified : Jean-Luc Bilhou-Nabera of Paris and Osse ; Bernard Cazenave-Latourrette of Pau ; and Brother Victor-Antoine d'Avila-Latourrette of Lagrangeville, New York. Also Yves Lafournere of Chateauneuf de Gadagne, France may be related.

Jean (late 1651 or early 1652 in Osse- July 1726 in Fresh Kills, Staten Island) married Marie Mercereau July 16, 1693 by Pastor Pierre Peiret (Peyret), with whom Jean fled from Osse, in New York at L'Eglise Francaise du St. Esprit or the French Church of the Holy Spirit (Also called The French Church of New York). Marie Mercereau (1670-1733) was from Moize, Saintonge, France. They had eight children : Marie, Jean, Pierre, David, Suzanne, Esther, Henry and James.

Marie (abt. 1661 - 1731) married Jean Laclède of Bedous (1660-1725) March 5, 1685. See more details below about their family.

It should be recognized that the destruction of the Protestant Temple, named Bethel, and Protestant records, particularly birth, baptism and marriage entries, at Osse by the representatives of Louis XIV and fires which destroyed records in Osse and Pau leave some voids about the family before 1685, the time of the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. These genealogical voids are concentrated between 1605, when the Abbe Laique d’Osse was purchased, and 1665 the year when the Registers of Osse Consistory begin.

What follows are some highlights about David who was the most prominent Protestant of his time in Osse, Béarn (now Osse-en-Aspe, France). He was well educated and came from a lineage that goes back to the first Protestant minister of the Aspe Valley in which Osse is located. Gassiot Latourrette or Gassioo de La Torreta in Béarnaise (born in Osse, 1540) was appointed Minister of the Word of God for the Aspe Valley at a Synod in 1563, then of Osse in 1564. Gassiot continued as pastor at Osse until his death on April 8, 1595, having executed his will on March 31, 1595 at the home of his daughter Marie in Oloron (now Oloron-St. Marie). Note: Gassiot in French is pronounced the same as in the Béarnaise Gassioo because the « t» is silent. In the French language the Béarnaise La Torreta was converted to Tourr (tower) and ette pronounced as « et » was substituted for the Béarnaise « eta ».

The highlights indicate that David was the leading Protestant in Osse and the Aspe Valley. As notaire he was involved with all business and economic transactions that required a written contract and a historical record. As Abbe Laique d'Osse, a title held for a renewable term of 16 years, he was the person who controlled the Maison Forte (not a castle, but a strong house, perhaps built in the 8th century,in the center of the village associated with the Gayrosse family, a family of nobility, which was basically most of the time an absentee owner in the 14th and 15th centuries).The authority also included the right to collect taxes to support, initially, the Catholic Church and the local priest. As noted below, this authority was exercised by David for the Protestants of Osse as the result of the village becoming exclusively Protestant after 1569 when Osse was destroyed and the French King's soldiers were defeated and driven out of Béarn. A hundred years later, exercising this authority became more complicated and contested for David. In the interim the Catholic population in Osse had increased to where it was perhaps 40 -50 percent of the population. As Louis XIV pursed his campaign against the Béarn Protestants after 1668, the local priest with the support of the King's representatives and the Court in Pau (the Parliament)attempted to gain authority over the funds (or goods given in kind) collected in the 1670s. It would require more research in France, beyond what is reported in Cadier's history, to describe all of details of the struggle about these funds, but its general nature is clear from the highlights below. Also, from records of the temple which survived, it is obvious that David was the one person who most frequently guaranteed the debts of the temple and/or loaned the temple monies as the actions of the King made it more and more difficult for the Protestants of Osse to maintain their ministry.

How did the Latourrette family accumulate wealth ? As noted herein, some wealth passed from Pastor Gassiot Latourrette to his daughter Marie at his death in 1595. In 1605, Marie’s husband and his father-in-law from his first marriage purchased the title of Abbe Laique d'Osse and the associated property, the Maison Forte. It appears at some later time, at the death of her husband, Marie inherited the title and property and they were passed on to the Latourrette family, and eventually held by David Latourrette. Moreover, it appears the right of the dime (the role of the dimier) was added at some point in time, likely by another purchase. It should be noted again that nothing in these transactions implied that the new holders were “of nobility.”

Madame Gilberte Gaubil, historian of Béarn and Osse, comments to this author on the purchase of the title of the Abbe Laique d'Osse and the right of the dime as follows: “1605 - Sale of the abbey laïque of Osse to Guilhem-Arnaud and to Bertrand de Davancentz. Then the abbey was passed on to the Latourrettes as you have discovered in the genealogy. It is normal that there is no mention of the dîmier since it is something completely different. The right of the dîmier was bought later, when the opportunity presented itself.”

Later, in 1682-83, we find that David is referred to as the “dimier d’Osse.” Madame Gaubil explains that this further demonstrates that the purchase of Abbe Laique d'Osse did not bring nobility to the Latourrette family. When David was described as the “dimier d’Ossse” he was listed with 10 abbes in “Document 913” (Pau Archives) who had to verified they were of nobility to be described as such. “Therefore, David is not presented primarily with this title which is subject to verification, and he is then given the title by which he is known, that is dîmier.” Also, Madame notes, contrary to the interpretation of this document by others it represents a renewal of the right of the dime, that is not the case.

Also, the family owned a mill along the stream (Larricq) which passes through Osse. This is consistent with the origin of the name as La Torreta in Béarnais, meaning miller. (See on this site http://www.latourrette.net/name_origin.html.) A map of Osse in 1837 shows Pierre Casamayou (actually Pierre Latourrette-Casamayou) as a teacher and the owner of several plots of land, including plots 358-360, where the original post 1659 house (now the Maison Mayerau) is located. Additional plots, 368- 371 are located nearby with 371 being a mill located further upstream across from the Latourrette-Pon house. Being the furthest upstream it had the most advantageous location of the three mills on the west side of the village. (It appears that at some point the family emphasized the Casamayou side of the family because under the Fors de Bearn, a Casamayou became a widow of a Latourrette in the latter half of the 18th century. This is a complicated issue and it would detract from this presentation to go into the details of the genealogy coming down from Jacob Latourrette (b 1650-d 1716-24), whose father was David (abt 1625-1697) and whose younger brother was Jean (b 1651-2 to d July 1726). So David had earnings from a mill, his practice as a notaire, and from the administrative fees associated with being the Abbe Laique d'Oss and dimier. He collected taxes and managed them, as well as had considerable property.

Although there is one gap in the lineage from Gassiot Latourrette, the minister of Osse, to David, all genealogists agree that David is a direct descendant from Gassiot. It should be noted that the first written reference about Gassiot is in the Béarnaise dialect as Gassioo de La Torreta. (Note: For the mistaken notion of Latourrette originating in Italy, this is not a surname of Italian origin but Béarnaise/Spanish and Gassiot is the written French equivalent of the Béarnaise name Gassioo where in French the name is pronounced with a long o and a silent t. It is noted further that Osse is only a few miles from the current Spanish border.)

1660 record shows David is a notaire. A notaire in David's time is not a notary public as in the United States authorized basically to certify signatures. Each village had only one notaire and there is evidence that small hamlets near Osse were served by David as a notaire for the Valley of the Aspe in which Osse and several villages and hamlets are located. Notaires were among the few well- educated people who could write and were involved in recording and certifying all business/trade transactions. Most French Protestants could read, sign their names and calculate but not write very well, especially because writing paper was extremely expensive.

The Protestants emphasized a basic education so they could read the bible. Many Catholics were illiterate, except for priests and leading families like the Laclède family of Bedous who had a close connection with David and is cited by Cadier as protective of the French Protestants of Osse. It is noted that an original July 22, 1694 document signed by David Latourrette is in the author's possession, thanks to a gift by a distant cousin Bernard Cazenave Latourrette of Pau, France. This document involves a property transaction in the small hamlet of Jouers in the Aspe valley which is southeast of Osse between Bedous and Accous. The document was passed down to Bernard's family in Accous. The fact that David was still practicing as a notaire in 1694, perhaps under the authority of another person, is very interesting since it appears Protestants were banned by Louis XIV from holding any titles or positions after 1668 in Béarn.

The 1694 document is discussed in more detail in an Addendum at the end of this narrative, along with an analysis of its construction and meaning by Madame Gilberte Gaubil.

April 1, 1665 to April 15, 1669 : David is appointed as an ancien (elder) of the Protestant Temple. From the Consistory Registers of Osse (1665-1685) elders and deacons were appointed to 4 year terms. With this appointment, he is identified in the registers of the Osse Protestant consistory as the notaire and so listed by Cadier in his history.

September 29, 1666 : Minutes of the meeting describe a loan taken out by the temple, guaranteed by four elders including David Latourrette.

1665-1669:During the period of David's term as elder, he is present and signs his name at many meetings including those where sanctions were authorized against temple members. Also, David agreed to be an arbitrator in disputes among members of the temple. It is clear his advice was sought on many legal matters both during this tenure as elder and afterwards during the 1670s.

1665: After the religious war of 1569, there had been a general accommodation between the two religions and a re-emergence of the historic resentment against the imposition of outside authority in the Aspe Valley as restricting the local authority granted by the Fors de Bearn. The ascent of Louis XIV, however, encouraged Catholic priests to be more aggressive. In 1665 the Osse priest attempted by a suit, using some previous actions of the Catholic - controlled Pau Parliament, to interfere with the free selection by villagers of the four Osse jurats (magistrates). Here, we rely on Cadier, because the consistory records are silent on the issue. The local priest charged that the selection of the jurats had to be determined by the actions of parliament, which had given a preference to the selection of Catholics; the estate of the Catholic Church was being managed by a Protestant (as Abbe Laique, David Latourrette). The charge was that since 1650 the jurats had used the estate funds for community and other profane purposes and not for the Church; and the existing jurats and David Latourrette, notaire, had insulted him and attempted to break the door to the Catholic cemetery. The suit resulted in favoring the selection of Catholic jurats. The other charges were not considered for the lack of evidence or were dismissed. This section is largely repeated from Chapter 2 of the author's Jean Latourrette and Pierre Peiret, Huguenot Refugees: Their Roots in Osse, Bearn. Original source, see Cadier, Le Bearn, pp.175-80.

1666: It appears that David receives or renews the family interest in the title of Abbe Laique d'Osse. This is a title which was originally purchased for a 16 renewable year term , by the daughter of Gassiot Latourrette Marie’s husband Bertrand Davances in 1605. It is an ancient title associated with the right to collect taxes to support the Catholic Church. The villagers in many small villagers in Béarn did not have the funds to build a church and support a priest, so a noble would build a church and established the right to tax the villagers to support the church and the local priest. In Osse this was done by the Seigneur Gayrosse who is shown in a census of 1385 to be holding the title Abbe Laique d'Osse and holding the property called the Abbaye de Gayrosse, a Maison Forte (strong house,) in Osse. Bertrand Davances and his father-in-law from an earlier marriage purchased the title and property from Pierre d'Abbadie de Maslacq, whose family had purchased them from the Gayrosse family in 1544. It is said in some Osse legends that Marie used the inheritance from her father Gassiot, who died in 1595, to match an equal amount from her husband to purchase the property/title. The act of recording the transaction clearly indicates this is not the case and the title and property must have come to Marie by inheritance. It is further speculated that Marie and Bertrand Davances did not have any children explaining how eventually the property was eventually passed on to David. Some of the details presented here have appeared on the webpage of Ellsworth John La Coste. See

http://familytreemaker.genealogy.com/users/l/a/c/Dr-ellsworth-J-La-coste/index.html from La Coste's book « In Old New York » his ancestry.

March 18, 1668 :In the Registers it is noted that sieur Latourrette, notaire, stood as a guarantor of a debt of the temple.

July 8, 1668 : The renewal of the contract between the Protestant temple and Pastor Jean-Jacques Mauzy is signed by David Latourrette, notaire.

1668 : After Louis XIV assumed the throne in 1662 he began a long, systematic process of intimidation, harassment, persecution and brutal suppression of French Protestants ending in the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in October of 1685. Over time, this action was directed to Protestants in particular locations, as well as generally across the kingdom. During this process Protestants were restricted from holding licenses, military and navel offices, and employment at court, and practicing as notaires, advocates, physicians, surgeons, midwives, apothecaries, printers, booksellers as well as other professions and crafts. In other words, Louis XIV's intent was to deny Protestants any means to gain a living and force them to convert. As describe by M. Charles Weiss *, Louis XIV selectively identified Protestant groups to attack or to entice them to convert. His attention focused on the relatively isolated Béarn with an Edict in 1668 which reduced the number of Protestants temples in Béarn from 123 to 20. This action was designed to limit the number of pastors and create barriers to the practice of the Reformed faith in a province in which about half of the population was Protestant. (In the 1660s, it is estimated there were 30,000 Protestants in Béarn.) The edict guaranteed the remaining 20 temples would be "perpetual and irrevocable," but that was breached and violated when on February 26, 1685 the Parliament of Navarre in Pau (one of the King's regional courts) recorded an edict proclaimed by the King's representative Foucault reducing the number of temples to 5, including Osse, and even those were forced to be closed in the spring of 1685.

In Osse, it appears the restriction on holding positions such as notaire and abbe laique d'Osse is associated with the 1668 Edict, because during his first tenure as elder (1665-1669) David is referred as notaire in the temple registers. He is not referred to that way in the temple records during his second term as elder in 1677 -1681. But as noted below, in various other documents and citations, after 1668 David is identified with these titles. Given the isolation of Osse and the fierce independence of the people, especially of the Protestants, it is likely these restrictions were ignored as long as possible up to the time of the Revocation in 1685.

* Weiss devotes a chapter to citing all the means by which Louis XIV persecuted Protestants, including the infamous dragooning in Poitou in 1681 and then Béarn in 1684-85. See Ch 3 (pp. 79-126) of Volume I in his History of the French Protestant Refugees, translated from the French by Henry William Herbert, 1854.

April 12, 1671 : The appointment of Pastor Josue Medalon with a « precise agreement » was prepared and executed with Medalon on behalf of the elders by David Latourrette, notaire.

December 1672- March 1673 : Having lost control over the selection of jurats, there was no respite for the consistory. In 1672 a Catholic premier jurat taxed the Protestants to support the Catholic estate. The consistory (temple) meetings of December 14 and 18, 1672 resulted in actions to block the levy and to seize all the monies which had been paid. The resulting litigation involved the consistory in heavy expenses to defend itself, but the case was lost. (Cadier, pp. 175-6)

The next action against the consistory was in March of 1673 when the Reformed were deprived of the use of public funds for their school. Two detailed reports of expenses incurred to fight this litigation were presented at the September 8 meeting, which Cadier quotes at length, noting that this case illustrates "the simplicity of our mountain people's customs." (Cadier, p. 176)

There had been a long-standing agreement in Osse referred to as the Premice, which was used to provide funds for the needs of both churches. Although this agreement had been approved by the Count of Toulongeon on February 9, 1675, the local priest contended in the same year that the Premice was not a separate fund but part of the Catholic estate, and claimed the funds which had been allocated to the consistory. These funds were managed by David Latourrette, who continued to give funds to the Protestants. This resulted in endless litigation which extended beyond his lifetime and involved personal claims against him for the funds the priest claimed were due the Catholic Church. (A ruling from Parliament in 1669 prohibited Protestants from raising funds for the support of their religion. It is obvious the Osse consistory had ignored that ruling, but in the 1670s the parishioners were having a difficult time making their pledges to the temple because of all the restrictions placed on them.)

1677-1681 : David Latourrette serves as an elder for another 4 year term. His signature during this term on May 29, 1677 is represented in the author's monograph, along with the signature of Pastor Peiret.(See p. 46b) It is obvious that Peiret was already in Osse before the Synod of June 23, 1677 freed Pastor Josue Medalon from his charge and entrusted it to Pastor Peiret as a subterfuge to foil Louis XIV's plan that Medalon was to be the last minister at Osse.

In the temple Registers it appears that David is no longer referred to as notaire. From his study of the Registers, Cadier lists him as Latourrette in 1677 and de Latourrette in 1681. (See Le Béarn, p. 151)

August 1, 1677 : David Latourrette signed a contract, containing reciprocal agreements, on behalf of the elders with Pierre Peiret as pastor. (Note: It is Pastor Peiret and his family that Jean Latourrette accompanies from Osse in September of 1685 to London and finally New York City in October of 1687.)

April 29, 1679 : David Latourrette on behalf of the elders signed a contract renewing Pastor Peiret's appointment with expanded duties.

July 30, 1679 : At this meeting of the consistory, with David Latourrette present, there is a discussion of the 12 francs pledged to the temple by Jean Latourrette ( deceased, referred to as Jean Tourret). See bequest to the temple by Jean Latourrette in next entry. It is determined that only 5 francs remains to be paid. The son Pierre agrees to pay it by September 8 and signs the minutes certifying with « certat es » (what is written is guaranteed) as did his father in earlier entries. The entire minutes have a large X drawn through them and at the bottom of the entry is a note from August 1701 by a representative of the King that the amount had been paid.

January 15,1683 , Declaration of Louis XIV : Following the declaration of the King, applying to all Protestant temples across the Kingdom, the Osse temple was required to account for all donations to its legacy over the period June 1662 to 1682.

With this action, Louis XIV confiscated "all estate, buildings and their contents, annuities, pensions and bequests to the poor of the RPR (Reformed Protestant Religion), and to the consistories for their poor" in favor of the Catholic hospitals.

David Latourrette compiled the list which included bequests to the temple by Eleazar Latourrette in 1664 and Jean Latourrette in 1674. In the author's interpretation of the temple Registers, Eleazar is David's father who died about 1664 and Jean is his younger brother referred to in the diminutive as Jean Tourret who died about 1674. (Jean Tourret is clearly Jean Latourrette because he always signs the Registers at meetings he attends as Jean Latourrette and is referred to as such by two different ministers who wrote the minutes. The two brothers left the same bequest to the temple : 12 francs and grain to the poor.)

The temple Registers from 1665 to 1685 is one of the few documents which survived from 1685. It appears that one of the reasons it survived, perhaps initially in David's hands, is that a number of the bequests recorded therein, like the one described for Jean Tourret (Jean Latourrette) at the meeting of July 30, 1679, were used as evidence that the temple gave to the King what was due under the declaration of January 15, 1683. See below the entry for 1701.

It is curious that David is referred to, with this task in 1683, as the notaire of Osse, even though French Protestants were no longer suppose to hold such posts. Was it out of respect or because there were so few educated and qualified people or, perhaps, both ? (See Cadier, Le Bearn, pp.180-4.

March 5, 1685 : Marie (ca 1661-1731), daughter of David and Magdeleine Latourrette and sister of Jean who comes to America, marries Jean Laclède (Nov. 22, 1660- Jan 18, 1725) of the leading Catholic family of Bedous.

The Laclède family of Bedous (1 km east of Osse) was the most prominent Catholic family of the Aspe Valley. They are known as protectors of the Protestants of Osse. Certainly, this was a strategic marriage for the Latourrette family of Osse before the Revocation to provide protection to the Latourrette family, as well as Protestants of Osse. Cadier mentions this protection as “the Protestants of Osse are never turned away from the door of the Leclède family,” but never indicates the strategic marriage that was behind this condition.

Marie Latourrette and Jean Laclède have 6 children one of whom is Pierre Laclède (1690-1776). Pierre marries in 1726 Magdeleine d'Espoey d'Arance(1697-Sept 21, 1733). They have a son Pierre de Laclede-Liquest born Bedous Nov 22, 1729 and died on the Mississippi River at the mouth of the Arkansas River, AR,-- various dates given as May 27, June 20 and June 30, 1778.

Pierre Laclede-Liquest was the founder of St. Louis in America in Feb 1764. (He added Liquest to distinguish himself from other Laclede family members.) See Dictionary of Missouri Biography, edited by Lawrence O. Christensen, William E. Foley, Gary Kremer.

My thanks to Robert Hoadley-Latourette who has tracked the genealogy from this marriage to the founder of St. Louis in America.

April 16, 1685: Pierre Peiret, the pastor with whom Jean Latourrette left Osse and came to America, recognizing the pressures from the representatives of Louis XIV, makes his last entry in the temple Registers absolving the parishioners of any responsibility for him and stating that all compensation owed him had been paid. The last entry into the church’s register on 16 April 1685:

“I undersigned, declare having been paid all wages, hay and wood for the whole time I have served the Church of Osse and therefore acquit the said Church fully and entirely promising to never make further request or demand- Written in Osse, the sixteenth of April one thousand six hundred eighty five. Peiret minister.”

September 2, 1685: Report comes from Jean de Tapie, listing all of the "indomitable" Protestants in the Aspe Valley that refuse to convert. The list contains only residents of Osse and identifies among 20 some Osse villagers, Magdeleine Latourrette as "living notoriously and implicitly out of wedlock" with David, the abbe laique d'Osse. (This was, of course, a spurious charge by the local priest who drew up the list for Tapie, because they were married by a Protestant minister, rather than a Catholic priest. It is interesting that the title is still associated with David.) The list also included Pastor Pierre Peiret's spouse and children, although the children are only listed as 18 months (Pierre junior) and 5 years (Magdeleine).

Between September 2 and 25, 1685: Pastor Peiret, his spouse Marquerite Latour of Bedous or Osse, their two children Magdeleine (age 5) and Pierre (age 18 months) flee Osse with Jean Latourrette and possibly other villagers. (Of the villagers only Jean appears to have reached New York in October of 1687 with the Peirets.)

An inquiry and a search warrant was issued against Pastor Peiret in 1685 (French National Archives G7-113) and an arrest warrant on September 25, 1685. (The arrest warrant was issued after Peiret was not found at Osse when the King's dragoons came to the village as a follow-up to the Tapie list. Note: These actions are in addition to the house arrest under which he was placed in November of 1684.)

Legend has it that the Protestants of Osse slipped away from the dragoons' excesses before the troops reached the village as they had done in 1569 when the King's army came to Béarn. The whole population took refuge in mountain barns and in the impenetrable forests until the dragoons were sent to La Rochelle.

The genealogy and history of Pastor Peiret is available on this website at

The flight of Pastor Peiret and Jean Latourrette from Osse is found at

See the history of Jean Latourrette on this webpage for a discussion of the treasons why Jean was selected or volunteered to see Pastor Peiret and his family safely out of France to England. It is likely that David, the father of Jean, played an important role in selecting Jean to be part of the party that accompanied Peiret. Jean is the only other person mentioned in the description of the party and, from checking names of the men who left Osse at the time, Jean is the only one from Osse who accompanies Peiret all the way to New York. It is also likely that the funds needed to see the party to the west coast of France and to bargain secret passage with a English or Dutch sea captain would have been provided at least in part, if not fully, by David. Jean fulfilled his obligation to see Peiret to a new ministry, but in the end it was New York were that became a reality.

October 18, 1685: The Revocation of the Edict Nantes was issued by Louis XIV.

1693: David Latourrette was fined for "abusing" a local priest. It is obvious that David continued to defy the local priest. It appears that David was under the protection of the Laclède family of Bedous and is cited as frequently attending the Catholic Church in Bedous with them. It is noted that his daughter had married Jean Laclède in 1685 and by this time there were grandchildren. The Latourrette family, including David, his spouse Magdeleine, and Jacob and his spouse Catherine Salenave are recorded at the Bedous Catholic Church several times during the 1690s at baptisms of the children of Marie Latourrette and Jean Laclède. With the Laclèdes present, it is obvious they were welcome at the Bedous Church. On the other hand, it is clear that David never abjured his Protestant faith.

July 22, 1694: TThe notary document of the sale of a house signed by David Latourrette, dated July 22, 1694, and analyzed by Madame Gilberte Gaubil is presented at the end of this section of the webpage about David Latourrette as an Addendum. It is a good example of the type of document that would come before a notaire in the Aspe Valley and what is now Osse-en-Aspe. Madame Gaubil’s analysis includes an assessment of David’s reduced status in society after 1685 and his likely feelings about that issue, as well as the general attitude of the residents of the valley about the intrusion of external authority, with the long history of the people living under the Fors de Béarn.

Certainly, David suffered a reduction in status and authority after 1685.

1697: David dies and, it appears, he is buried under the Latourrette house in Osse. It is likely his wife was also buried there after her death in 1705.

David’s life was complex with his leadership in the Protestant temple of Osse and his roles as Abbe Laique d’Osse and dimier (right of the dime), especially as these roles bought him into a continuing conflict with the Catholic Church and the representatives of King Louis XIV. He was the ancestor of the founding minister of the Reform Religion in Osse, Gassiot Latourrette, and the secular head of the church during the height of Louis XIV’s determined attack on Protestantism, leading up to 1685. He made a strategic alliance with the leading Catholic family of the Aspe Valley with the marriage of his daughter Marie to Jean Laclède in 1685. That alliance provided some protection for the family and the Protestants of Osse. In fact, it allowed Jacob, the son, to pursue a career as an advocate with his brother-in-law Jean Leclède to the extent of being recognized to appear before the Parliament of Pau. Hopefully, more will be learned about David and Jacob with the continuing genealogical research of people of the valley.


1701 : The various claims associated with the list of bequests to the temple drawn up in 1683 are finally settled and signed off by a representative of Louis XIV. Yves Lafournere has in his possession a document from this period which contains the original hand written list of bequests and many pages of a legal brief signed by Jacob Latourrette seeking the return of 101 francs which had been lent to the temple by his father David over the years. The basis of this claim was that these were loan funds, not bequests to the temple, owed to David. This document clearly identifies Jacob as the son of David, whereas the identification of Jean being a son is based on a large amount of circumstantial evidence.

1705: Death of Magdeleine Latourrette recorded by a priest in the records of the Catholic Church in Osse.

By 1701 : The title of abbe laique d'Osse is no longer associated with the Latourrette family. See


which describes the personal blason (coat of arms) of Jacob acquired in 1696 or shortly thereafter. An updated version is found on this page in 'Blason (Coat of Arms) of Jacob de la Tourrette.'

The blason of Jean de Fondeville, the priest at Etsaut, is described in 1701 in this posting and it is noted that he is also the abbe laique d'Osse.

Comment from posting: The fact that the Priest at Etsaut is the abbe laique d'Osse in 1701 begins to answer a question this researcher has had relative to David Latourrette. It is known David was the abbe laique in Osse in the 1660s. However, all titles and positions of authority were taken from the Protestants by decrees from Louis XIV in 1668. Yet, David's wife appears on Tapie's list, created by the local priest, issued on September 2, 1685 as being the spouse of the abbe laique d'Osse. Was the title used just to identify the spouse or was there some indirect pressure being placed on David because he was under the protection of the leading Catholic family, the Lacledes, in Bedous? And, actually, when was he forced to give up the position? It is clear, however, that the title was not passed on to his son Jacob after David's death in 1697. Added note: There is some evidence that in 1682 David may have renewed the title for 16 years as was the custom under the rules of the Fors de Bearn which allowed the title to held for 16 years. Therefore, if the renewal had occurred, it would have expired about the time of David's death in 1697. Associated with it, would be the loss of the rights to the Gayrosse Maison Forte (strong house) in Osse.

Explanation from Madame Gilberte Gaubil about the sale by David of the Abbe Laique d’Osse.

1695: Madame Gilberte Gaubil explains the sale of the Abbe Laique d’Osse by David Latourrette, which the author could not find in the historical records of the Pau Archives.

Madame Gaubil states “It does not seem abnormal to me that the abbey laïque and the droits décimaux (rights of the dime) be sold together. Even if these are two different functions, there is no reason to think that they should be together nor separate. I have found similar examples in other villages. It is not surprising either that David sold all his possessions more or less linked to the Catholic Church a few months earlier, considering that he is at the end of his life. May be was he ill? Maybe he suffered strong pressures from the Catholics since the two functions have an important link to the Catholic Church? He was probably not going to mass very consistently. All very natural.” (Note above that David and the Latourrette family are found at several baptisms of the children of Jean Leclède and Marie Latourrette at the Catholic Church in Bedous, after their marriage in 1685.)

“There may be an explanation to the fact that you have not found evidence (documents) of the sale by David. First of all, not all notarized acts have been found, for several reasons:

The notaries in the XVIIth century did not always send them. For example, in a document titled : Récapitulatif sur l'Administration d'Ancien Régime entre 1670 et 1700 (Summary on the Administration of Old Regime between 1670 and 1700), in the stack: Statement of the Notaries Who Practiced in the Aspe Valley, there is a passage that says about Jean Pierre de Poey (notary from 1677 to 1681): neglectful because he has not transmitted the copies of the actes he has written". Moreover, when David Latourrette was notary of the Vic d'en Haut between 1669 and 1673, the notarized actes that he wrote were kept in a community coffer, which was in the Borce church, and were not communicated to the Parliament of Navarre until 1739. Normally he should not have been notary of the Vic du Haut (above), but the notary of the Vic du Bas (below) was Jean de Laclède from 1669 to 1673. What a coincidence! Finally, let's not forget that many documents were lost in the two fires (at the Pau Archives), the one in 1720 and the one in 1908.

1694 Notary Document of David Latourrette

This is a review of the document signed by David Latourrette as notaire on July 22, 1694 by Madame Gilberte Gaubil, historian of Béarn and Osse-en-Aspe. The three pages before David’s section and signature could not be translated, except by someone familiar with the Béarnais language and old French. It is instructive to know the detail of a transaction of this nature and how David revealed his attitude about being restricted as a Protestant after 1685.

Here is the substance of the transaction. Passet bought from Coustau a house with land in Jouers, near Accous. The contract was written on July 16, 1694 in the presence of witnesses Casenave and Lasalle, by the Jurat de Litté "in the absence of a notary". (When you cannot have a notary nor a coadjuteur, it is the Jurat who writes and is liable for the notarized act, and who thereafter keeps the contract until he gives it to the notary. It is said that he is the "holder" of the contract)

The jurat, the witnesses and the two parties (seller and buyer) later went to see David to validate the contract by having him sign it as a notaire. It seems that Passet had a few fears because he asked David for this additional little certificate to validate the act itself that David had just signed. Here is the translation of David’s action.

"Coadjuteur, present in person and signing (formula employed by the coadjuteurs in the beginning of the acts he wrote), have in this way signed the original, of Coustau, seller, of Passet accepting, of Casenave present, of Lasalle present, of Litté jurat and holder and thereafter the act notarized of the agreement, according to the description made by Mr. de Litté, jurat and holder, to me David Latourrette, notaire of Aspe, in the place named Accous on July 22, 1694, and the said description I have signed the said original, Latourrette Notaire, and of which original, I, said Notaire, have made the present extract (short version) at the request of Passet, buyer, to which preceding correction gave him to be used as pertains"

(signed) Latourrette

Analysis by Madame Gaubil:

David presents himself as "notaire of Aspe in the place named Accous", however he does not write "notaire of the Aspe valley", which is the term that designates the official notary, but notary is his profession, his education, therefore he has the right to mention it, and moreover, he limits his role to Accous. Let us not forget that he has presented himself as coadjuteur. Everything is legal. In writing notaire of Aspe, he merely makes it clear that he is the specialist of the law in the Aspe valley, but he takes advantage of the situation to go a little beyond the limits of what is permitted. The formula must satisfy his ego that has been bruised by his inability to serve as notary for religious reasons. On the other hand, he may feel free to do so, knowing that the official notaire is Jean de Laclède (notary from 1681 to 1698) who won't cause him any trouble.

This sort of detail gives life to these characters in history. It is easier to feel closer to them. For myself, this is an example of the permanent fronde* of the people of the valley, so attached to their customs that they could not bring themselves to accept the intervention of representatives of a State so distant, so authoritative and so cruel.

*Fronde: A series of civil disturbances in mid-XVIIth century France, during the minority of Louis XIV, when aristocrats rebelled against the court and particularly the chief minister, Cardinal de Mazarin. With a small f, Gilberte used the word fronde in a more general meaning of popular rebellion against authority.