|Portrait of Louise Philippe I|
Philippe's exile began during the Reign of Terror in 1793, a time of chaotic violence during which many aristocrats were guillotined. Prince Philippe, who was serving as a colonel in the French army at the time, fled France in April of that year and traveled around the world extensively looking for work. His desertion and connection to General Charles Francois Dumouriez, who was suspected of treason, led to the arrest of the prince's father, Louis Philippe II, Duke of Orleans, and his two brothers. While working as a teacher at a boarding school in Germany in November of that year, Philippe learned that his father had been guillotined. The prince's brothers remained in prison but were later exiled to Philadelphia in the United States in 1796.
Philippe continued to travel around Europe, living in countries such as Switzerland and Finland before traveling to the United States in 1797 to join his brothers in Philadelphia. From Philadelphia they traveled to New York before making their way to Boston. The arrival of the princes in New England was announced in the Boston-based newspaper, The Columbian Centinel, on October 21st, 1797. On the day of the announcement, the princes attended the second launch of the U.S.S. Constitution and visited the future site of the Bunker Hill Monument to view a monument dedicated to to Dr. Joseph Warren, the patriot leader killed during the Battle of Bunker Hill in 1775.
|The Union Oyster House, circa 1920s|
During their time in Boston, they also traveled to Maine. En route to Maine, traveling by covered wagon, the princes spent a few days in Newburyport and then journeyed on to Haverhill, traveling alongside the Merrimack river which Philippe praised as beautiful and declared “Earth has not anything to show more fair.” While on their trip to Maine, the princes stayed for a week at the Martin Farm, near Portsmouth, NH.
After staying in Boston for just a few months, the princes eventually returned to New York and continued to travel around the United States. They did not return to France until the abdication of Napoleon in 1815. Prince Philippe eventually became King of France in 1830 after King Charles X was overthrown. According to the book, "The Rise and Fall of Louis Philippe," shortly after Philippe assumed the throne, flowers were sent to the Tuileries Palace in Paris from the garden at Martin Farm, which Prince Philippe replied to with an autographed letter.
The Lonely Planet: Travel Book Author Finds France in Boston: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/travelblogs/523/18981/Travel+Book+Author+Finds+France+in+Boston?destId=362022
"The Rise and Fall of Louis Philippe” Benjamin Perley Poore; 1848
Boston Guide: French Culture in Boston