Pierre-Joseph-Antoine Roubaud

Pierre-Joseph-Antoine Roubaud, Jesuit priest and missionary, spy, forger (b at Avignon, France 28 May 1724; d at Paris, France in or after 1789).

Roubaud, Pierre-Joseph-Antoine

Pierre-Joseph-Antoine Roubaud, Jesuit priest and missionary, spy, forger (b at Avignon, France 28 May 1724; d at Paris, France in or after 1789). Sent to the New France mission to the Abenakis of St-François-de-Sales (Odanak) in 1756, he accompanied the warriors in the campaigns of the SEVEN YEARS' WAR. He feared he would be blamed for failing to rally the Abenakis in the spring of 1760 and offered the British information in return for protection. Gen James MURRAY welcomed him and, impressed by his erudition, sent him to London as a Canadian informer. He became a Protestant, married and advocated that the Canadians be deprived of priests to force their conversion. Having lost favour through a change of government in 1765, Roubaud tried various trades and was often in debtors' prison. Most officials despised him, but they used him to spy on embassies and particularly on Canadians visiting London to argue for their rights. He betrayed his confidant Pierre Du Calvet and, to make money, even published forged letters by MONTCALM, predicting the loss of Canada and the rebellion of the Thirteen Colonies. He insisted he had a right to a share of the Jesuit estates, and backed Jeffery AMHERST, who claimed their property for his part in the Conquest. Sick and disillusioned, Roubaud retired to the Séminaire de Saint-Sulpice in Paris in 1768.