‘Monlezun-Peterson Family Chronicle Main Page!’
Anna ‘Bernadette’ Monlezun-Pontón, Chronicler
“We sit by fires we did not light; we drink from wells we did not dig!’ Author Unknown
My father, Lee Joseph Monlezun, is of Basque descent from Southern France! He would speak to this lineage with such pride and awe. In time, and in honored memory of him and ‘his people’, there is the ‘Family Heritage Room’ on Arthur Avenue, was the pilgrimage to ‘our’ region among the Basques on their soil, the first Monlezun/Peterson Family Reunion on our soil. Also, a flight west to the ‘Center for Basque Studies’, University of Reno, a Family EXCEL and a FAMILY TREE printed as a Wall Mural calling by name many generations. These are now ‘our people!’
“When Monlezuns left the Basque country of southern France near the Pyrénées in the mid-1850s,
France was undergoing almost constant revolution from Napoleon's time through the
Franco-Prussian War and was still ruled by monarchs. They left their home and headed for the
land of freedom. Among them was a young man, Dominique Monlezun, the ancestor of a large
family in Acadia, Calcasieu, Jefferson Davis and Vermilion parishes in South Louisiana.
About the same time, from the Pyrenees, came a young lady named Louisa Thomasina Peterson
of Swedish descent. The two families landed in New Orleans, LA in 1866 but soon made their
way to the southwestern section of the State, where Louisa and Dominique Monlezun were
married March 10, 1873 in New Orleans, LA. Dominique eldest brother, Pascal, was his best
man! The couple settled near the Vermilion Parish line on the Mermentau River from present-day
Lake Arthur. They had five children, Anna ‘Josephine’, Joachim Ezador, Paul ‘Emile’, Theodore
Joseph and Antoine Monlezun, my paternal grandfather. The four sons, like their father, were
carpenters and built many of the early Lake Arthur homes which are still standing. They built
their homes in a row on Iowa Street!”
I am most grateful to my first cousin, Margaret ‘Yvonne’ Monlezun-Guillory of Houston, TX who lovingly
and diligently researched and shared her documented familial lineage information. Also, profound
gratitude is extended to my sister, Constance Victoria Monlezun Darbonne, who gathered more
wonderfully poignant details while on French Basque soil in our country of origin! Merci Beaucoup!
In the beginning…
Pierre Monlezun born ca.1749 in France
married Jeanne Abadie born in France
Child of Pierre Monlezun and Jeanne Abadie:
Dominique Monlezun One
Born abt. 1769, Lalanne, died 21 November 1852 Commune de Lalanne, Trie-sur-Bais, dept.
Hautes Pyrenes, France
m. Anne Nogaro
b. 6 April 1772 Vidou, France, d. 07 February 1819 age 47
daughter of Gabriel Nogaro b.ca 1741 d.1819 age 78 and Jean Marie Roug
b. 1748 d. 15 February 1782 age 34
Five children of Dominique Monlezun and Anne Nogaro:
1. Dominique Barthelemy Monlezun Two, b: 13 September 1805, Lalanne
d. 06 November 1884 age 79, Lalanne
m. 21 May 1830
Marie Mailhe b. abt. 1808 in Vidou, France d. 13 July 1886 daughter of Guillaume Mailhe-Daniel
and Marianne Monlezun, daughter of Francois Monlezun and Marianne Navarre
2- Louise Monlezun, b. December 1806
3- Pierre Monlezun, b. 04 December 1808
4- Gabrielle Monlezun, b.29 April 1812
5. Bernada Monlezun, b. 25 August 1814
Six Children of Dominique Barthelemy Monlezun and Marie Mailhe are:
1. Pascal Monlezun, b. 26 October 1832, Lalanne d. July 19, 1887 age 72
Abbeville, LA. He married (1) Bernadine LaAbbadie in the late 1850’s,
Lafayette, LA (2) m. Leviie Platsmire, a German immigrant, 2 October 1888
2. Antoinne Monlezun, b. 15 September 1839 m. Rose Lassus 26 April 1868
3. Marie Monlezun, b. 29 June 1842; m. Jean Baptiste Antoine Severin Duran 06 February 1874
4. Dominique Monlezun Three
b. 18 April 1845, Lalanne d. 28 June 1928, age 83, Lake Arthur, LA.
“In 1845, April 18th, at 8 PM, before us, Mayor and registrar of Lalanne, Parish of Tire,
Department of Hautes Pyrenees, Mr. Monlezun, Dominique, laborer, age 40 and living in
Lalanne, has presented a masculine child, born today at 3 AM. His wife is Marie Mailhe,
age 37 years old. The child’s first name will be Dominique.” Made his First Communion 25 May
1858 ~ inscription inside his small bible!
m. 10 March 1873 Louisa Thomasina Peterson in New Orleans, LA
b. 06 May 1855, d. 1886 Cypress Point, LA, age 29,daughter of Charles Auguste
Peterson b.ca.1819 in Sweden and Bonisa Raphaela Buchanan,Florida and paternal
granddaughter of Admiral Carl Von Norden-Skiold b.1791 in Sweden.
Their four children:
1. Louisa Thomasina and twin
2. Selinda Josephine,
3. John Augusta of Marseille, France &
4. Jochina Theresa Peterson-Gambino whose daughter Reparata Gambino b. 12 July 1884 d. May 1926
entered the Convent 13 August 1925 and named ‘Soeur Marie Joaquine de St. Joseph!’
5. Dominiquete Monlezun, b 11 September 1830, Lalanne
6. Anne Monlezun, b. 20 April 1849, d. 21 November 1852, age 3 in Lalanne
The Five Children of Dominique Monlezun and Louisa Thomasine Peterson are:
1. Anna ‘Josephine’ Monlezun, b. 17 February 1874; d. 1950 age76
m. John Edward Murray 22 October 1900
2. Joachim Ezador Monlezun, b. 28 January 1876 d. 04 November 1960 age 84
m. Adele Boutte 25 April 1901
3. Paul ‘Emile’ Monlezun, b. 03 November 1877, d. 27 April 1965 age 87
m. Adeline Boutte 22 April 1901
4. Theodore Joseph Monlezun, b. 29 November 1879 d. 14 August 1966 age 86
m. Blanche Blanchard 2 June 1908
5. Antoine Monlezun b. 31 March 1882, d. 29 March 1971, age 88
m. 22 February 1909
Victoria Broussard, 10 February 1884, d. 12 June 1989 age 105
daughter of Antoine Broussard and Aspasie Miller.
7. Baby Monlezun/Peterson
born and died with mother ~ 1886, Cypress Point, LA; now in heaven.
The Four Children of Antoine Monlezun and Victoria Broussard are:
1. Mary ‘Beulah’ Monlezun, b. 03 February 1910, d. 28 March 1985
m. Alvis Pitts April 1939
2. Clyde Joseph Monlezun, abt. 1914, d. January 1987
m. Nadine Moss 12 April 1942
3. Lee Joseph Monlezun b. 24 April 1917, d. 31 July 1985, age 68
m. Anna ‘Gertrude’ Hensgens 13 August 1941
4. Alvin Joseph Monlezun b. Sunday 1 February 1920 d. 10 October 1944, age 24
119th Inf. Regt., 30th Inf. Div., 1st US Army, 1st Lieutenant; killed in action during WW ll in
Achen, Germany ‘Battle of the Bulge’; buried in Henri Chappell Military Cemetery in Belgium.
Rest in Eternal Peace, Dear One.
1) ‘THE LIVING ROOM ON ARTHUR AVENUE!’
2) ‘AT THE GRAVESITE ON CYPRESS POINT 130 YEARS LATER!’
‘The pastoral site of Louisa Thomasina Peterson-Monlezun and her stillborn child 1886
3) ‘CENTER FOR BASQUE STUDIES, UNIVERSITY OF NEVADA, RENO!’
What is a Basque! Where are They From! Can They Cook Gumbo?!
4) ‘GENERATIONS OF MONLEZUNS MAKE THEIR MARK!'
July 2004 Nola Mae Ross American Press Writer (1926-1966)
A wonderful story penned by Constance Victoria Monlezun Darbonne pursuant to her familial visit to Lalanne and
Monlezun, France on her fervent pilgrimage to Southern France!
6) ‘THE ‘MONLEZUN-PETERSON FAMILY REUNION!’
And gather we did and called ten generations by name!
In Gratitude Sent Post-Monlezun/Peterson Family 2005 Reunion in Lake Arthur, LA
Dear Ones All!
Created in His image and likeness down
through the ages, we were begotten.
It is now our time to
be grateful and celebrate in the footsteps of
those who have gone before.
Our steps intertwine with our ancestors
whom we can now call by name,
centering back to the palm of His hand Who,
counted every hair on our head before
we were formed in our mother’s womb!
They have prayed us forward since 1300!
We now become the pray-ers for our own yet to be born.
Family is a gift to be
nurtured by work, good example and unceasing prayer,
becoming good and wise stewards of that which has been entrusted to us;
by communicating and protecting,
by study of the steps taken by the ‘grands’
to insure our freedom, education and faith foundation
lived in the daily, day by day, in trust, love and toil.
Lead, Kindly Light!
I am grateful to my brothers Lee Joseph, Jr. and Dominique Joseph, LLC for purchasing
our ancestral home of origin which has enabled me as her ‘Caretaker’ to create heritage
binders of archival paper and ‘family walls’ exhibiting our heritage and remembrances.
That is wood-and-nails! This way is a venue for being ‘electronically faithful!’
And, it is only a click away for all present and future generations!
God of our ancestors, help us cling to You! Lead, Kindly Light!
7) “THE BASQUE SHEPHERD AND THE SHEPHERD PSALM xxiii!’ ~ Excellent!