Arnaldo Guillemard

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Arnaldo Guillemard
Occupation Spanish military officer
Spouse Marie

Arnaldo Guillemard (alternately Arnauld and Arnauldo) was a Spanish lieutenant in Pensacola at the time of its transfer to the United States in 1821. He was married to Marie Josepha de Villiers, daughter of Captain Marcos de Villiers. Records show him purchasing a 40' by 170' lot from Joaquin Barela in July 1804[1] and later receiving a land grant of 80' by 230'8" in March 1810[2].

After the arrest of former Governor Jose Callava by Andrew Jackson, a group of thirteen Spanish officers, which included Guillemard and de Villiers, wrote a "Declaration of many respectable witnesses of what passed," which enumerated a number of what they perceived to be injustices perpetrated by Jackson on the Spanish population. No action was taken at the time, but when a newspaper published an anonymous advertisement critical of Jackson and his deputy Henry Brackenridge, Jackson ordered the banishment of Guillemard, de Villiers and six other signatories of the previous declaration.[3]

The group accepted the banishment, but Guillemard returned with his father-in-law four months later, while Jackson was in Nashville. They appealed to acting Governor George Walton for enough time in the city to retrieve their families and set their private affairs in order. Walton initially confined them to their homes and later imprisoned them in the calabozo ("dungeon"). When word of the men's return reached Jackson, he replied, "Col. Coulon (Villiers) is father-in-law of John Innerarity. Guillemard is a very base and treacherous man; being the same who piloted the British up Bayou Bienvenue in the year 1815, then an officer of Spain, when the attempt was made upon New-Orleans by General Packenham."[3]

The two prisoners petitioned the United States Congress. On February 20, 1822 their complaint was read before the Senate, but tabled on a motion by Senator James Barbour.[4] Two days later, on February 22, an order by Secretary of State John Quincy Adams released Guillemard and de Villiers.[3]

A street in the Long Hollow district is named for Guillemard.