The hermit of terrebonne

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The hermit of terrebonne - JEA3 BAPTISTE Hl'dAS THE HERMIT - OF...
JEA3 BAPTISTE Hl'dAS THE HERMIT - OF TERREBOXNK. The subject of this brief sketch, says the Houma Courier, was born in a small farmhouse, four miles above Thibodaux. parish of Lafourche, in the year 1812. ' . At the age of 19 he removed to Terrebonne Terrebonne and, engsging in farming, be soon acquired considerable property, and while on the road to prosperity he practically lost his reason. The real cause of his insauity is still unknown, but it is said that it was brought about by' tbe fickleness of his lady love a young and handsome Creole girl of this parish, who jilted him almoSf at the altar m order to marry his rivaL It was a sad blow to his brave and sensitive sensitive heart, and be became despoudent to a degree bordering on insanity. On the day that his fiauoee walked to the altar to become the wife of his rival Dugas swore that never more would ho live in a world where bis dearest hopes had been ruined aud shattered to atoms by the faithlessness of a, woman whom he loved and trusted. He was true to bis word. He built himself a hut in a dense strip of trees and briars aud wild flowers, aud there he has remained in solitude for the past fifty years. Though of an unbalanced mind, the characteristic life of this lonely hermit is exceedingly interesting. His wearing apparel at all seasons of tbe year consisted consisted of a common gray blanket tiirown loosely around his body, and, although be owned a trunafull of clothing, clothing, be could never be persuaded to exchange exchange them for his blanket. His bed consisted of gray moss heaped up la a comer of his nut. In tbe early days of. his retirement Into the woods, his food eousiated of snakes, wild hogs, rats, eto This mannerof liviug coutinned until persuaded by the administrators of his estate to use more palatable food. Of the meats brought to him he always reserved reserved a portion to be distributed atuoug the small insects which inhabited inhabited his hut, even goiug so far as to place syrup in oyster shells to feed the ante, aud he allowed no one to injure or kill his little pets. Two years ago his home was destroyed by tire, aud auother of similar dimeu-siousand dimeu-siousand dimeu-siousand of the aame primitive style of arcbiteoture was built by neighbors. He paid very little attention to ths mosquitoes which, during the summer, swarmed around his little Lome like dark clouds on a rainy day. To his visitors he iuvariably and sadly sadly pointed to "old grandfather's clock" on the rough mantelpiece. It was the only oruameut in his home, but it no longer kept the -record -record of time of the years of it master's onbappiness and misery. The presence of visitors and their con-"ersation con-"ersation con-"ersation was always aunoying to him, and his auswers to all questions were curt and short. Children, however, were always given a krndly. welcome. He frequently joined Lh8 Jn crayfish parties. Unless aggravate s '"'-5, '"'-5, '"'-5, others, he was as harmless as JK" , but when angry ha wasdaugero. he was supposed to have at all n-V n-V n-V hnntingkuife concealed in the folds o his blanket to be used in case of necessity necessity tla a weapon of defense. He had iugeniously constructed a press for tbe purpose of extracting the juice out of his favorite Creole cane. His little cane mill was simplicity itself, itself, but it auswered tha purpose for which it was designed. His daily walks were confined strictly strictly to the limits of his valuable property, property, and no oue remembers of ever having having seen him go a step beyond, except once, mauy years ago, when he was taken before the district court in Houma to answer the charge of having attempted to demolish tne Catholio church ou lower Terrebonne. At the trial it was shown that Dugas, having donated tbe site fur the church, objected objected to the dancing at a fair given for tin. purpose of raisjug sufficient f uuds to complete the building, saying to those who arrested bim wbile in the act of tearing down tbe edifice that the place was intended for a house of worship, and not for the purpose of amusements. He was acquitted, - - He was a descendant of the original Acadiaus, wbo came to Louisiana years ago to avoid the persecution? of English English tyranny. - On Wednesday, JXov. 13, lyi, sjrtTHEi was. mortal of Jean Baptists: Dugas passed away. At his death bedtod many of his relatives ana iriends. . 9 died at tbe ripe old age of 79 years. His estate is valued at 84000 and wili be distributed among his leKal heirs. Thus euded the career of the "wild man of lerre bonne."

Clipped from
  1. The Times-Picayune,
  2. 13 Dec 1891, Sun,
  3. Page 16

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  • The hermit of terrebonne

    cellueck – 14 Apr 2013

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