In January, 1721, the French cargo ship LA BALEINE delivered a group of women and girls, ages 12 to 30, into the care of Governor Bienville in Louisiana. They had come from the Hospital General at La Salpetrière in Paris. Most of them soon found husbands among the citizens of Biloxi, then the capitol of the French colony. Some girls, orphaned at birth, had been raised and educated at La Salpetriere. The list of girls had been approved by Cardinal Louis-Antoine de Noailles, Archbishop of Paris. The group became known as The Baleine Brides.
Compiled by an authority on Gulf Coast and lower Mississippi Valley genealogy and history, this work contains genealogies of those brides who founded large families in Mississippi, Illinois, and Louisiana.