Dupertuis, Julio David (1848–1903)

By Matías H. López

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Matías H. López

First Published: October 3, 2021

Julio David Dupertuis was one of the first people to learn about the Adventist message in Argentina. He was an active member of the church and part of a family that gave many workers for the church’s mission.1

Early Life and Immigration to Argentina 

Julio was born in Switzerland on October 10, 1848. He had seven siblings: Lina Marthe (Mar. 1, 1844); Emma Augustine (July 11, 1845); Louise Anna (May 29, 1847); Marc (April 24, 1850); Lucien Felix Samuel (May 17, 1854); David Henri (June 8, 1857) and Emile Felix Emanuel (April 9, 1860). At the age of 17 he immigrated with his parents, David Dupertuis and Luisa Fontaine, from Switzerland to Argentina, establishing in Esperanza, Santa Fe province. He accepted the Adventist faith along with his family when living in Colonia Pujato, Santa Fe.2

On April 20, 1872, Julio married Ida Luisa Arn. Ida was born in Switzerland on October 12, 1849, to Eduardo Arn and Paulina Chatelain. Julio and Ida were a family with 11 children, six boys and five girls.3 Their children were Félix Emilio (1873–1949), Emma Ida (1874–1916), Martha Lea (1875–1949), Adolfo (1877–1945), Sofía (1878), Samuel (1883–1968), Julio (1884–1957), Luciano (1887–1966), Lina (1888–1904), Luis (1890–1975), and Fanny (1891–1924). All their children were Adventists and tireless workers in the dissemination of its message.4 Julio worked as a carpenter and bought a 173-acre (70-hectare) field in Pujato, a colony South of Esperanza, Santa Fe. There he contacted the Adventists that were periodically sending him materials from France. Soon they resided in a 988-acre (400-hectare) field in Felicia, Santa Fe, a colony of French-Swiss immigrants established in 1877.5

Conversion

Dupertius got to know about the Sabbath from a smith friend and from Les Signes des Temps [Signs of the Times] French review (Señales de los tiempos). In 1885 they started keeping the Sabbath. The Baptist pastor Pablo Enrique Besson (1848–1932) mentioned about Les Signes des Temps [Signs of the Times] review to the Dupertius family (published in Basilea, Switzerland), and from much insistence from the Dupertiuses, he gave them the reviews. And like that, they were convinced about the Sabbath that the Adventists talked about.6 They shared these teachings with other families from the colony and neighboring colonies. Among those families were the Pidoux and the Dobanton families. Along with his friends Alberto Arn and Floris Mathieu, they formed the first Adventist church in the area.7 Jean Vuilleumier baptized him. Thus, the Dupertuis family became the center of a Sabbathkeeping French-speaking group in their community.8 In 1897 they were visited by Frank H. Westphal (1858–1944) and Jean Vuilleumier (1864–1956), who organized them as a church.9 At some point a small Adventist school started to operate10 in Julio Dupertuis’ country house. The meetings until 1917 happened every three months in the Dupertuis house, in Felicia. From that year on they gathered every other week in Grütly, in the Pidoux house, in Felicia, in the Dupertuis house, and in Humboldt, in Carlos Meier’s house.11 Among the first Adventist families the following surnames are included: Herbez, Pidoux, Meier, Barraud, and Arn. The temple in Felicia was built in 1926 and was expanded in 1957.

Julio D. Dupertuis died on October 27, 1903, at the age of 55. It is believed that it was from a sunstroke from which he never recovered. Ida died on May 4, 1921.

Julio David Dupertuis will be remembered as the firstfruit of the Adventist evangelism in South America, as a leader of a community of Adventist believers, and as an earnest missionary.

Sources

Brown, Henry F. “Even the Wroth of Man Shall Praise Him.” South American Bulletin, June 1929.

“En las huellas de los pioneros” [In the Footsteps of the Pioneers]. Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], December 1983.

Greenleaf, Floyd. Tierra de esperanza: El crecimiento de la Iglesia Adventista Sudamericana [Land of Hope: The Growth of the South American Adventist Church]. Trans. Claudia Blath. Buenos Aires: South American Spanish Publishing House, 2011.

Huntley, María L. “A Letter From Argentina Republic.” ARH, November 12, 1899.

“Julio David Dupertuis.” Accessed September 4, 2018. https://www.geni.com/people/Julio-David-Dupertuis/6000000019984242947.

Meier, C. T. de. “Una buena propaganda” [A Good Advertisement]. Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], August 24, 1931.

Meyers, E. H. Reseña de los comienzos de la obra en Sudamérica [Overview of the Beginnings of the Work in South America]. Buenos Aires: Buenos Aires Publishing House, 1940.

Peter, Heriberto. “Desarrollo histórico de la Iglesia Adventista en la Argentina hasta 1908” [Historical Development of the Adventist Church in Argentina Until 1908]. Master’s degree thesis, Latin American Theology Adventist Seminar, 1984.

Peverini, Héctor J. En las huellas de la Providencia [In the Footsteps of Providence]. Buenos Aires: South American Spanish Publishing House, 1988.

Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], March 28, 1921.

Thomann, Eduardo W. “El comienzo de la obra en la América del Sur” [The Beginning of the Work in South America]. Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], June 18, 1934.

———. In Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], May 23, 1921.

Notes

  1. Adolfo Dupertuis, grandson of Julio D. Dupertuis, interviewed by Daniel Oscar Plenc, Felicia, Santa Fe, June 13, 2009. Currently deceased.

  2. Information extracted from the following available documents in the White Research Center, in River Plate Adventist University, Entre Ríos, Argentina, visited on June 11, 2018: (a) Dupertuis’ family tree, (b) “In the footsteps of Julio Dupertuis” (nonpublished document about an interview carried out by Myriam P. de Presser with Arturo Dupertuis, on November 12, 2015, in Sunchales, Santa Fe, Argentina), (c) letter correspondent to the Dupertuis family file.

  3.  “Julio David Dupertuis,” https://www.geni.com/people/Julio-David-Dupertuis/6000000019984242947. Accesed on September 4, 2018.

  4. Eduardo W. Thomann, in Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], May 23, 1921, 15.

  5. Heriberto Peter, “Desarrollo histórico de la Iglesia Adventista en la Argentina hasta 1908” [Historical Development of the Adventist Church in Argentina Until 1908] (master’s degree thesis, Latin American Theology Adventist Seminar, Villa Libertador San Martín, Entre Ríos, 1984), 39.

  6. Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], March 28, 1921, 15; Peter, 40: María L. Huntley, “A letter From Argentina Republic,” ARH, November 12, 1899, 710; E. W. Thomann, “El comienzo de la obra en la América del Sur” [The Beginning of the Work in South America], Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], June 18, 1934, 6; Henry F. Brown, “Even the Wroth of Man Shall Praise Him,” South American Bulletin, June 1929, 5.

  7. “En las huellas de los pioneros” [In the Footsteps of the Pioneers], Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], December 1983, 2.

  8. Floyd Greenleaf, Tierra de esperanza: El crecimiento de la Iglesia Adventista Sudamericana [Land of Hope: The Growth of the South American Adventist Church], trans. Claudia Blath (Buenos Aires: South American Spanish Publishing House, 2011), 22; Héctor J. Peverini, En las huellas de la Providencia [In the Footsteps of Providence] (Buenos Aires: South American Spanish Publishing House, 1988), 36, 37; E. H. Meyers, Reseña de los comienzos de la obra en Sudamérica [Overview of the Beginnings of the Work in South America] (Buenos Aires: Buenos Aires Publishing House, 1940), 8.

  9. “En las huellas de los pioneros” [In the Footsteps of the Pioneers].

  10. C. T. de Meier, “Una buena propaganda” [A Good Advertisement], La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], August 24, 1931, 13.

  11. Pidoux, interviewed by Daniel Oscar Plenc, Felicia, Santa Fe, June 14, 2009.

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López, Matías H. "Dupertuis, Julio David (1848–1903)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. October 03, 2021. Accessed June 27, 2022. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=5I8X.

López, Matías H. "Dupertuis, Julio David (1848–1903)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. October 03, 2021. Date of access June 27, 2022, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=5I8X.

López, Matías H. (2021, October 03). Dupertuis, Julio David (1848–1903). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved June 27, 2022, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=5I8X.