The Cadillac is Occitan

Cadillac cars are named after an Occitan adventurer.

When he arrived in America, he took the name of Lamothe-Cadillac and founded the city of Detroit!

The name is however very French... or rather Occitan.


A bit of history...

In 1902, the very young Detroit Automobile Company is renamed Cadillac Automobile Company, in homage to the founder of the city of Detroit, the Frenchman Antoine de Lamothe-Cadillac.

However, Lamothe-Cadillac was not the real name of this Gascon adventurer.

He was born Antoine Laumet on 5 March 1658 in Saint-Nicolas-de-la-Grave, nowadays called the department of Tarn-et-Garonne.

His father was a lawyer at the parliament of Toulouse and a protégé of Cardinal Mazarin.

His mother was the daughter of a merchant and landowner.

For unknown reasons, Antoine Laumet left for North America and landed at Port-Royal in Acadia in 1683.

It is at this time that he seems to have forged a new identity by taking inspiration from the titles of an advisor to the parliament of Toulouse, Sylvestre d'Esparbès de Lusan de Gout, baron of Lamothe-Bardigues, lord of Cadillac, Launay and du Moutet.

Antoine Laumet becomes Antoine de Lamothe, squire, lord of Cadillac.

Cadillac spends several years exploring the lands of New France and the north shore of the Detroit River.

It is on this site that the city of Detroit will develop.

When the Detroit-based automobile manufacturing firm decided to change its name in 1902, the bicentennial of the founding of the city by Antoine de Lamothe-Cadillac had just been celebrated.

The Cadillac Automobile Company paid a double tribute to the explorer, choosing the Frenchman's coat of arms as its logo.


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