Johann de Baillou studied mathematics, natural science and related sciences in Paris and other places. In this way, he acquired
such high-level knowledge that he was elected a member of the Academy of Sciences in Paris. The reputation which he gained
in Paris led to his being called into the service of Francesco Farnese, the Duke of Parma. In 1725 he was appointed Commissioner-General
of the Artillery and, subsequently, General Engineer. After the death of the Duke, his brother and successor, Duke Antonio
Farnese, entrusted Johann de Baillou with the overall responsibility for all ducal buildings and gardens and in 1729, he was
promoted to supreme Director-General of all mines and factories in Parma and Piacenza. At the ducal court he held lectures
on experimental physics and at the request of the Duke set up a cave containing many machines, which impressed his contemporaries.
At the same time, he established a mineral collection. His position as the supreme authority over all mining activities in
the country conferred upon him by the Duke was doubtless a good basis for this.
Together with his family, Johann de Baillou moved to Tuscany after the death of the Duke of Parma and served for a short while
under Grand Duke Johann Gasto de Medici in the capacity of Director-General of all forts, buildings and mines in Tuscany.
After the death of Johann Gasto in 1737, de Baillou entered into the service of the new Grand Duke of Tuscany, Franz Stephan
von Lothringen, the husband of Maria Theresia.