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The LaRoque de Roquebrune in France


The history of the Larocques in France was summarized by Pierre Gauthier (possibly a pseudonyme used by Robert de Roquebrune) in an article published in the historical magazine Nova Francia (no 4 page 330 to 341 in French) printed in 1929 "Les La Roque de Roquebrune in France et au Canada". Copy of this article are in many libraries. In the following text I have summarized a manuscript that my cousin, Georges Larocque, wrote from his personal research in France, at the archive in Paris, and also in Gascony at the archive department in Auch (Gers). The presence of this lineage of LaRoque in France is well documented. There is no doubt that this family as ever existed. What remains to be proven, is the relation that would link Bernard LaRoque to a son Philibert Couillaud dit Roquebrune in Canada, our ancestor. So far, no trace of Philibert Couillaud in that region of France or any indication in Canada that points to this family. There is also the Document prépared by Hozier about the nobility of French Families. (In French, Latin and Gascon, sent by Réjean Larocque) 

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Bernard Seigneur de LaRoque:
LaRoque and Roquebrune are the names of places where this family originate. On May 20th 1409 messire Bernard, (if he had a last name it is unknown) swore "oath and hommage" to the count of Armagnac, Bernard VII, and became from then on the landlord of the fief of the bourg of LaRoque and from this, passed on his name to his French and Canadian descendants. We do not know the name of his wife. In 1409 America wasn't discovered yet. Joan of Arc was born four years later, and a good part of France was ruled by the English. 
Arnaud de LaRoque:
The son of Bernard lord of LaRoque, Arnaud, lived in the years 1423 to 1485. He took the succession of the seigniorie when is father died. We are also unaware of the name of his wife. He had one brother, Arnaud-Bernard and a sister by the name of Marguerite. 
Armand de LaRoque
Armand de LaRoque lived between 1430 and 1498. He was the first born of Arnaud's children. Armand served as hostage, " in the hand of the angles" in place of the count of Armagnac, Jehan V. The count rewarded him generously by granting him a pension of 100 pounds for his entire lifetime and he also gave him a large oak forest which mainly made his fortune. In that period, oak was used in furniture making, in construction but was also used in foundries because of the high heat generated by this wood. He married demoiselle Bourguine de Bezolles in the year 1471.

Laroque's coat of arms in Armagnac

Jehan de LaRoque: Armand's son, Jehan de LaRoque lived in the years 1472 to 1514. At 14 he became a soldier for Louis, count of Armagnac. He was first married to Ysabeau de Lussan in 1488. She died while giving birth to a little girl named Jehanne who also died later. When his father passed away, he became the lord of the Seignory of LaRoque. His second wife was Françoise d'Ambert (or d'Aubert). We were able to retrace, in the archive of the parlement of Provence, the oath sworn to the King in 1504 when Pierre and Jehan de LaRoque de Roquebrune became bailiff for the commune of Grasse and Saint-Maximin. Bailiff, in those days, were the representative of the King of France, were acting as justice of the peace, and administered the finances of the commune. When Jehan died, his oldest son, Manaud, succeeded him. Jehan's widdow remarried Antoine de Montlezun.
Manaud de LaRoque
Manaud de LaRoque Seigneur (landlord) of LaRoque-d'Ordan was the oldest son of Jehan. He was born at the seigniorial castle in 1499. In 1515, Manaud (say Ma-no) was pronounced esquire of the Great esquiry of the King. When his father died he was instituted "the oldest son universal and general heir of the LaRoque estate." He became noble landlord of the seigniory of LaRoque and owner of the castle. In the office of the notary in Auch he passed a matrimonial contract to marry Jehanne d'Esparbez on Thursday April 20th 1521. Jehanne was his close cousin. The King asked him to form an army to combat the huguenots labeled heretic.
Philippe de LaRoque
Noble esquire, messire Philippe de LaRoque, lord of La Roque-d'Ordan was the youngest son of Manaud de LaRoque and Jehanne d'Esparbez. He was born in the seigniorial castle around the year 1525. At 16 he became esquire of the King. In the month of September 1562 he participated in the siege of Lectoure ordered by Blaise de Montluc. In 1607 King Henri IV proclaimed the uniting of Gascony to the French Crown. In 1572 when Manaud died, Philippe became lord of LaRoque. The wealth of the family had greatly diminished after years of combat with the heretic huguenots. The villages of LaRoque and Roquebrune were in ruins. Because of all these wars, Philippe married later in life. He was almost 40 when he married demoiselle Mathurine de Bar-d'Yslemade. 
Georges de LaRoque
Georges de LaRoque lord of Roquebrune and Pouy in Armagnac was the youngest son of Philippe de LaRoque and Mathurine d'Yslemade. He was born in Auch in 1570 where the LaRoques family had taken refuge because the seigniory and the castle were occupied by huguenots. Like his previous relative, he took the profession of arms. When his father died, as he wasn't the eldest, he inhirited the seigniory of Roquebrune. His brother, Jehan-François succeeded his father as lord of LaRoque. See below for the continuation of the succession of the Seigniory. On October 7th 1599 Georges married Françoise de Ferrabouc lady of Pouy "lady possesseress of many fiefs". She was the daughter of Jehan-Jacques de Ferrabouc.
Jehan Bernard de LaRoque
Jehan Bernard de LaRoque de Roquebrune lived in the years 1600 and 1665. He was the only son of Georges LaRoque and Françoise Ferrebouc. At the age of 15 he served in the army of the king. In 1640 he married Marie Dalmas de Marcelly noble daughter of messire Pierre de Dalmas lord of Marcilly and noble lady Charlotte Couillaud de Hauteclair. From this union Jehan-Philibert Couillaud was born. (There is no document to prove this) If we believe what was written in Nova-Francia, he would be our ancestor in New France. 

The Seigneurs de la Roque 

As you read, Georges de la Roque was the second son of Philippe de la Roque and his brother Jean-Francois succeeded his father as landlord of the Seignory de la Roque. This lineage of de la Roque in Ordan Larroque continued until about the biginning of this century. Le last of this lineage, Monsieur le comte Marc-Henri de La Roque has had only daughters, five in all and no sons to carry on his name in France. 
We will continue the succession of de la Roque's in France starting at Jean-Francois.
Jean-François de la Roque I
Noble Jean-François de la Roque, of his nom, Seigneur de la Roque & of la Brane, fils elder son of Philippe de la Roque, acquired the Land and noble Places de la Brane in the county of Fézensac July 3 1614. He married by contract dated November 14 1603 Demoiselle Jeanne de Floran de Gestas daughter of Noble Basian de Floran-deGestas. Their oldest son carried on the succession.
Jean-François de la Roque II 
Noble Jean-François de la Roque II, of his name Seigneur de la Roque & other places , first born of Jean-François de la Roque & instituted heir universal of his mother by testament dated February 2 1629, became Captain of the Company of Cavalry of Ban of the Sénéchaussée of Armagnac. He married Noble Anne de Barboutan, daughter of nobleman Philippe de Barboutan and Noblewoman Anne de Montholieu, Lady of Carritz. He was burried in the chapel de La Roque.
François de la Roque
François de la Roque succeeded his father. He first married Demoiselle Isabeau de Cours in 1675 and in 1703 he married Jacquette La Croix daughter of Pierre La Croix. François died November 3 1714.
Amant de la Roque Amant de la Roque, Seigneur de la Roque, lived in his castle de la Roque-d'Ordan located two league of the town of Auch. He was captain in the regiment of the Old Marine Infantry by Commission November 10 1733. He married November 16 1734 demoiselle Jeanne de Melet-de Fondelin daughter of the landlord of Fondelin. Six children were born from this marriage.
Jacques-Amant de la Roque
Jacques-Amant de la Roque baptised October 18 1742, carry on the descendance. He added a count crown above the coat of arm sculpted above the front entrance of the castle of La Roque. 
Amant de la Roque
Noble Amant de La Roque, count of La Roque d'Ordan, married in 1802 Adélaïde de Cugnac.
Jean-Jacques-Maximilien de la Roque
Jean-Jacques-Maximilien de la Roque count of La Roque d'Ordan married noble demoiselle Anaïs de Cours-Gontaud.
Noble Marc-Henri de la Roque
The lineage of the La Roque's in France ended at count Marc-Henri de la Roque having had only 5 daughters. We can still see the castle of la Roque near the village of Ordan Larroque. After the death of Mr the Count de La Roque, the estate was sold to the count of Danton, a descendant of Georges-Jacques Danton an important person during the French revolution.

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