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Dubois, Toussaint

Born: 1750-XX-XX

Died: 1816-03-11 Little Wabash River

Flourished: Vincennes, Indiana

Toussaint Dubois arrived in Vincennes, Indiana Territory sometime after the American Revolution. In 1788, he married Janne Boudeau, with whom he had five children. In 1800, Janne Dubois died, leaving Toussaint the charge of five children under the age of twelve. That same year, Dubois entered into a commercial partnership with Pierre Menard, which would last for sixteen years. Dubois and Menard established stores and trading posts in Vincennes, Cahokia, and Kaskaskia, and between 1800 and 1805, Toussaint traveled much of the United States east of the Mississippi River for commercial and mercantile business. He also acquired large sections of land in the Indiana Territory. In 18o5, he married Jane Baird, with whom he had three children, including Jesse K. Dubois. As Native Americans under the leadership of Tenskwatawa and Tecumseh began to organize a confederation to resist encroachment on their lands in the Indiana Territory, Governor William Henry Harrison called on Toussaint, who had extensive experience trading with the Indians, to ascertain and resolve any outstanding grievances. When peace overtures failed, Toussaint joined Harrison's campaign against the Indians, commanding a company of spies and guides at the Battle of Tippecanoe in 1811. During the War of 1812, he received a commission as major in charge of all spies in Indiana. Returning from a trip to Kaskaskia in 1816, Toussaint died while trying to cross the Little Wabash River in Clay County, Illinois.

Leo W. Graff, Jr., "Toussaint Dubois: Political Patriarch of Old Vincennes," George Rogers Clark: Selected Papers from the 1987 and 1988 George Rogers Clark Trans-Appalachian Frontier History Conferences, accessed 7 February 2019, http://npshistory.com/series/symposia/george_rogers_clark/1987-1988/sec5.htm; Helen L. Allen, "A Sketch of the Dubois Family, Pioneers of Indiana and Illinois," Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society 5 (April 1912), 56, 58-61.