Jean-François de Galaup Biography, French Navigator Life Story


Who was French navigator Jean-François de Galaup? Information about Jean-François de Galaup biography and life story.

Jean-François de Galaup

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Count de LA PEROUSE (23 August 1741 – 1788), French navigator. Jean François de Galaup was born in Le Gua, near Albi, France, on Aug. 23, 1741. He entered the French Navy at the age of 15, served in the Seven Years’ War, and fought against the British during the American Revolutionary War.


In August 1785, commanding the frigates La Boussole and L’Astrolabe, La Pérouse sailed by way of Cape Horn and the Pacific Ocean on a voyage of discovery. He reached the southwest coast of Alaska in July 1786 and then sailed for Asia. On the way, he discovered Necker Island, in Hawaii. After visiting Macao, the Philippines, and Japan, he discovered the strait between the islands of Hokkaido and Sakhalin, later known as La Pérouse Strait. In September 1787 he sent Jean de Lesseps overland from Kamchatka to France with his journal of the voyage and maps, plans, and notes on the expedition. This material was published in 1808-1809.

After visiting Samoa and Tonga in the South Pacific, La Pérouse reached Botany Bay, Australia, on Jan. 26, 1788. A letter sent from there was the last news of him until 1826, when an Englishman in the Solomon Islands discovered the hilt of La Pérouse’s sword in the possession of one of the islanders. Two years later, a French expedition sent out in search of La Pérouse found the wreckage of his ships on Vanikoro Island in the Solomons, where he had died in 1788.


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