Antoine Goudeau (Sr.), Avoyellean of 1793
Antoine Goudeau, first settler of community of Goudeau, and patriarch of Avoyelles branch of Goudeau family.
I would like to place in nomination the name of Antoine Goudeau, Sr., as Avoyellean of the Year for the year 1793.
I calculate that this was the year he settled Bayou Rouge Prairie. In a land claim filed on behalf of his heirs, the following evidence was recorded:
"The evidence of W.L. Collins, aged 50 years, taken 5 October 1812, states that he was informed by Joseph Joffrion, formerly alcalde of Avoyelles, that the Chief of the Tunica tribe of Indians, Penroy, had sold the claim of said tribe to one half the island, and Prairie Bayou Rouge to Antoine Godo (sic) and others," etc., and that "to his knowledge the tract claimed by A. Godo, has been inhabited & cultivated by said Godo and his heirs for 19 or 20 years preceding this date."
This later became the site of the town of Goudeau. I believe that Antoine Goudeau moved to Avoyelles from Pointe Coupee because of flooding there in 1792. He found that Bayou Rouge Prairie was higher ground, and therefore safe from the flooding experienced at Pointe Coupee. Antoine Goudeau had a large tobacco plantation there, and he and his wife, Marie Jeanne Roy, had eleven children.
Note: It may be that Antoine Goudeau moved to Avoyelles in 1792, but I see that this year is already taken by Jean Baptiste Marcotte. However, the testimony quoted above leaves some room for doubt as to the actual year that Antoine Goudeau purchased the land and settled there. Calculating "19 or 20 years" before October 1812, may have been as late as the Fall of 1793.
Therefore, I'd like to nominate Antoine Goudeau, early Avoyelles settler, as Avoyellean of the Year for 1793.
Pierre Goudeau Normand, Jr.
For a list of past recipients of the Avoyellean of the Year award visit: Avoyelleans of the Year