Born in New Orleans, Trudeau was one of the most influential military officers and politicians in Spanish Louisiana. He was Surveyor General of Louisiana from the early 1780s until he resigned in 1805, his name appearing as Don Carlos Trudeau on maps and land grants. Trudeau was responsible for the design of New Orleans’ Lafayette Square, which was established in 1788 as Place Gravier. Trudeau surveyed the Natchez District of Don Juan Oconor in 1794 and the Feliciana District of Frederico Kimball el Joven in 1799. His surveys were invaluable for the resolution of land fraud cases in Louisiana. Following the Louisiana Purchase, Trudeau also served as recorder for the City of New Orleans and president of the city council. He was the acting mayor of New Orleans for six months in 1812 during his tenure as recorder. Trudeau died at the age of 73 and was buried in St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 in New Orleans.