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Francis Bennon Ducrue

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Missionary in Mexico, b. at Munich, Bavaria. of French parents, 10 June 1721; d. there 30 March, 1779. He became a member of the Society of Jesus in 1738, and ten years later was sent to California, where he laboured zealously until the expulsion of the order in 1767. When that untoward event took place, Ducrue was the superior of all the California missions. He submitted uncomplainingly to the decree of expulsion and even cooperated with the royal commission in enforcing its provisions. The Jesuits withdrew, taking with them only their clothes and a few books; this was all the wealth they carried away from California after seventy years of work in its missions. Ducrue eventually returned to his native land. He wrote in Latin "A Journey from California through the district of Mexico to Europe in the year 1767" which was translated into German for the "Nachrichten von verschiedenen Ländern des spaniscvhen Amerika" of Christoph von Murr (vol. XII, p. 217-276), and was translated into French and published by Fr. Carayon in his "Documents Inédits" (Paris, 1876). Murr also gives some interesting specimens of the language of California, which were communicated to him by Ducrue.


Sommervogel, Bibl. de la c. de J., III, 253, and Supplement; Michaud, Biog. Univ. (Paris, 1852, XI, 419; Carayon, Documents Inédits (Poitiers, 1876); De Backer, Bibl. des éscriv. de la c. de J., I, 1677; Bancroft, North Mexican States and Texas (San Francisco; 1884), I, 476, 478; Clinch, California and Its Missions (San Francisco, 1884), I, ch. ix, 178 sqq.

About this page

APA citation. Spillane, E. (1909). Francis Bennon Ducrue. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company.

MLA citation. Spillane, Edward. "Francis Bennon Ducrue." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 5. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1909. <>.

Ecclesiastical approbation. Nihil Obstat. May 1, 1909. Remy Lafort, Censor. Imprimatur. +John M. Farley, Archbishop of New York.

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