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What American girl would not love to meet a French Count?

Well, author Jini Jones Vail did just that!

Graduated from Sweet Briar College in Virginia with a BA in French literature, Vail set out to extend her knowledge of all things French. She applied her facility as a travel writer in Public Relations at Air France and at The French Embassy, both on Fifth Avenue, New York.

After her children were grown she decided to pursue graduate studies in French at Southern Connecticut State University while teaching French. For the ensuing ten summers Vail studied at the Universities of Touraine and Bourgogne and traveled extensively in France with a concentration on French history of the 12th and 18th centuries.

One of those summers, while writing outside of Tours, France, she received an unexpected invitation from Count Michel and Countess Madeleine de Rochambeau to visit them at the Château de Rochambeau near Vendome. This was the beginning of her passion for their ancestor, General Rochambeau.

Jini Jones Vail

has  devoted  her  life  and  career  to the sharing of her fervent interest in
French history, art, culture and language with others. Ms. Vail has done this
through her writing, teaching and volunteering. 

Jini Jones Vail currently resides with her husband in Connecticut.

Commissioner, Governor Jodi Rell's Advisory Commission on American and Francophone Cultural Affairs, State of Connecticut (1995-2009)

 - Promoted Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route (W3R-US) for a National Historic Trail by
   the National Park Service
- Produced two all French concerts at St. Anne's French Cathedral, Waterbury, Connecticut
- Researched all things French in State of Connecticut from historical to art, antiques, restaurants

- Month of October - proclaimed by Governor as Month of celebration of all things French in

Author Jini Jones Vail with Jacques Bossiere, Ph.D.
Founder and First Chair of Washington – Rochambeau Revolutionary Route (W3R-US)

Completed four books and one play for publication

       - Rochambeau: Washington's Ideal Lieutenant

       - Connecticut's French Connection

       - Conversations with Queen Aliénor

       - Chance Meetings

       - Rochambeu for Young Readers       


Washington - Rochambeau Revolutionary Route (W3R-US)                

       - Presentation on Rochambeau and the Château de Rochambeau at 225th celebration,
         at the Alliance Française de Northwestern Connecticut, and at the Mattatuck Museum
         of history and Art in Waterbury, CT
       - Planning Committee, Waterbury Region, Connecticut

       - Committee for Historical Reenactment/Encampment Festival

Waterbury Symphony Orchestra

       - Women's Committee: Promoted French concerts

       - Picnic and Pops: Assisted in development of outdoor symphony program  

French Teacher at: Bassick and Central High School, Bridgeport

       - Taught French language, history and culture

       - Created innovative activities, with emphasis on French history and art

       - Created and produced multi-media French culture programs

       - Coordinated first student trips to France, Quebec and Montreal

       - Coached French students for Connecticut organization of Language Teachers Annual Poetry 

       - Imported Breton (French) musicians - traditional instruments workshop

                              The author in her authentic, hand-sewn, 18th century gown

Jini Jones Vail is a member of:

       - Daughters of the American Revolution, Trumbull Porter Chapter, Watertown, Connecticut
         She gave speech for 100th anniversary: Ye Olde Burying Ground

       - Sexta Feira, Watertown, CT - 125 year old literary society
         Requiring annual 8,000 word paper (hers are usually on French subjects)
         Presented scene One from Conversations with Queen Aliénor, covered and published in
         New York Times

       - Alliance Française de Northwestern Connecticut
         Past Vice President in charge of Programs
         Past Member of the Board, Liaison with Gov's Commission


       Creative Writer's workshop by Frances Chamberlain, New York Times
       - wrote two women play on ancestor, Aliénor of Aquitaine, 12th century French Queen
         (Conversations with Queen Aliénor)
       - writing series at the Education Connection Litchfield, CT   

       Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven, Connecticut
       - Master's Program in French literature, 24 graduate credit hours
       - Studies at University of Touraine, Tours, France
       - Sixth Year Program. French studies: history, art, language 18 graduate hours
       - University of Bourgogne, Dijon, France

       Experiment in International Living - 3 month program with family in Belfort, France

       French studies at Belfort, France

       Sweet Briar College, Sweet Briar, Virginia, BA French Literature

Legendary meeting with Count Michel de Rochambeau

during author's visit of their Château near Vendome in France. The Château has its origins in the early Middle  Ages. The Rochambeau family has lived there since 1515. Ms. Vail first visited there in 1993 at the invitation of Count Michel and Countess Madeleine de Rochambeau. She returned to visit them in the 1990's and kept up a correspondence with the Count until his death in December 2007.

Please see The New York Times INTERNATIONAL article about Count Michel de Rochambeau
from June 15th, 2007 by John Tagliabue (Thoré-La-Rochette Journal)
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