Mettray, an agricultural and penitentiary colony of France, in the department of Indre-et-Loire, 5 m. N. of Tours, on the railway to Le Mans. It is a celebrated establishment for the reformation of juvenile offenders, which is supported mainly by its own labor, and to some extent by voluntary donations and annual subscriptions. Frederic Auguste Demetz (who was born May 12, 1796, and died at Met-tray, Nov. 8, 1873) was the founder. He studied law, and for several years was a judge of the court of police correctionelle at Paris. In order to learn the best way to reform juvenile criminals, he investigated the agricultural colonies in Hamburg, Belgium, and Holland for the reformation of young offenders, and in 1836 made a tour of inspection of the penitentiaries in the United States. On his return to France, M. Demetz, in connection with the viscount Bretignieres de Courteilles, estab-lished in 1839 the colony of Mettray, the viscount offering a portion of his own estate for the experiment. In July they assembled 23 young men and began training them for teachers for the young offenders who were to be brought there.
In January, 1840, they admitted 12 young criminals, and gradually increased the number, till in August, 1872, 792 were under training; and from the foundation to that date 4,287 had been received. The boys are divided into families of 50; the labor is chiefly agricultural, though various trades are carried on; and the establishment is almost wholly self-supplied, though not entirely self-supporting. After the death of Courteilles (1S54) the superintendence of the establishment devolved on Demetz. Demetz published Projet (Tetablissement d'etablishment d refuge pour les prevenus acquittes a leur sortie de prison (Paris, 1836); Lettre sur le systemepeni-tentiaire (1838); Rapport sur les penitenciers des Etats-Unis (1839); Resume sur le systeme penitentiaire (1847); Rapport sur les colonies agricoles (1856); and an interesting series of annual reports to the societe paternelle on the condition of the colony of Mettray.