SAINT-ANDRE, ANDRE-JEANBON ( 1749-1813), organizer of the Revolutionary navy, member of the Committee of Public Safety. Jeanbon was born in Montauban on 25 February 1749 to A. and M.-M. Jeanbon. His Calvinist father, owner of a fulling mill, sent him to a Jesuit collège but soon withdrew him. He joined the merchant marine in 1765, made several long voyages, and rose to the rank of captain. In 1771 he entered the Protestant seminary in Lausanne, where he was ordained a Calvinist minister in 1773. He added the Catholic-sounding "Saint-André" to his name to gain protection from religious persecution. He was a pastor at Castres from 1773 to 1782 and then at Montauban in 1788. There he became an early supporter of the Revolution and joined the Jacobins. In November 1791 he was elected to the municipal government.
Elected a deputy of the Lot to the National Convention in September 1792, he joined the Girondins but quickly abandoned them for the Montagnards. Declaring "Royalty itself is a crime," he voted for the immediate death of Louis XVI and against all appeals. On 9 March 1793 he was sent as a representative on mission to the Lot and Dordogne, where he organized military recruitment and enforced strong measures against suspects, émigrés, and refractory priests. Returning to the Convention on 27 May, he supported the arrests of the leading Girondin deputies. After the Montagnards gained dominance, the Convention elected him a member of the Committee of Public Safety (10 July), the most powerful government committee, and president of the Convention (11-25 July). He and P.-L. Prieur de la Marne spent the month of August on mission enlarging, reinforcing, and supplying the armies of the Nord, Ardennes, and Moselle.
Jeanbon's most significant role in the Revolution was to reform the navy. He found a weak and dispirited navy that was no match for the British and left a formidable fleet that could at least challenge the enemy's control of the seas. On 30 September the Committee of Public Safety directed him to go to Brest and take any measures necessary to rebuild the Atlantic fleet. During this mission, he dismissed many officers, filled the ranks with patriots, inspired Revolutionary