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The First Settler

A Quoted History of Our Founder
Aristide Aubert Thouars
By. Chris Kelley
Written: July 25, 2000
Edited: November 1, 2000

This is a short history of a man who is rarely known, and whom we should all know for his great accomplishments. He is a true hero, that we should all be proud of...

Although the Dushore, we now know, was founded in 1859, the "roots" were planted way back in 1794. A man named Aristide Aubert Dupetite Thouars (pronounced Twor) came here, with quite a background. He built a small 12 x 12 cabin at what is know as "French mans spring". The location is believed to be where the Sullivan Terrace stands , or somewhere on Mosier's Hill. Records show that he was born in 1760, in France. He was in the French Marine Corps, and was involved with several battles. He became a Naval captain, and was a commander of a warship.

In 1792 he was given a mission to rescue LaPerouse, in a ship he purchased with monies from his fathers estate. One third of his crew was killed in a battle, and he went ashore in the nearest Portuguese harbor, where he was arrested and sent to Lisbon. His ship was sold. After sometime, it was decided that his arrest was unjust, and he was released, and paid 6,000 francs as proceeds for them selling his ship. He gave the money to his remaining crew, and traveled to the United States.

He eventually made his way to Philadelphia, and from there on traveled on foot to Asylum, a French settlement on the Susquehanna River. The head manager at Asylum, gave him 400 acres of land, at what is now Dushore. He arrived in Spring of 1794, and left in 1797. At Dushore, he cleared, farmed, and built a cabin by himself, and amazingly, the records say, he only had one hand. In 1796, he walked, to Niagara Falls, with some French noblemen, for reasons, unrecorded. In 1797, he began to cultivate the land he owned at Dushore.

However, troubles in France led him to return there, for a position in the Navy. He was the Commander of an 80 gun ship, which was sent on a mission to Egypt.

As story goes, he came into the path of an English fleet, under the command of Admiral Nelson, and this began the all famous "Battle of the Nile". His ship was rendered almost powerless against the English. Commander Thouars, nailed his "colors" to the ships mast, and told his men, they will never surrender. He was then shot, and lost his only arm, he was shot again, and lost his leg. Through all he was enduring, he encouraged his men to fight till the last man was standing. While being carried away, he was shot again, he died. Mr. Thouars was only thirty-eight. He passed in that Battle of the Nile, August 1, 1798.

A great man he was. We would not know of him, and his great life, if it were not for the research of Rev. David Craft. A greater history of the French roots in the area can be found in Craft's History of Bradford County.

Quoted by: Chris Kelley


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