Thursday 27 February 2014

The French Settlers in Ireland - No 7 (pt2)

The Settlement in Waterford.


By The Rev. Thomas Gimlette, Waterford.

Before the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, the English had purchased their largest supplies of sail-cloth from Brittany and Normandy. In 1681 the Company of Elers and Deacons of Threadneedle-street, in London, supplied funds for the erection of a linen manufactory at Ipswich, where a great number of French Protestants had colonised. A Huguenot of Paris, named Bonhomme, taught them to make sail-cloth; and in 1685 this manufacture was in full operation in that rising town, from whence it spread so rapidly, both in England and Ireland, that, according to Macpherson, the importations from France of this article were reduced, from the year 1683 to 1733, by the enormous amount of 500,000.

Louis Crommelin, to whose energy, activity, and skill, Ireland owes so much in the promotion of her linen manufacture, about this time, during his tour throughout Ireland, came to Waterford; and John Latrobe, one of his most active confederates, became a settler there, and was entrusted with the chief care of promoting the manufacture. His exertions were acknowledged by the Government, though in a far less degree than those of his friend and employer. In the Civil Incidents of the Treasury from 1715 to 1730, several small sums appear, as free grants, to John Latrobe, on account of adequate services rendered in promoting the flax and hempen manufactories in Leinster.

The degree of success which Crommelin had attained in Lisburn prompted him to extend his field of operations to the South; and to accomplish this he required a grant in aid from the Irish Parliament. Their Journal states that, on the 4th day of December, 1717 --
"A petition of Louis Crommelin, gent, was presented to the House and read, setting forth -- That the Petitioner, upon the encouragements given him by his late Majesty King William, of glorious memory came into this kingdom to settle a manufactory of Linen Cloth, and fixed a colony for that purpose at Lisburn, in the North of Ireland, wherein, notwithstanding the many difficulties that attended the same, he succeeded beyond expectation, and by such means increased the trade of the nation in such a measure, and to such a degree, as the revenue and produce thereof is becoming very considerable, as appears by the great exportation every year; and the Petitioner considering that there are several branches of the said manufacture which may be set up in some parts of the kingdom, and tend to the great benefit, advantage, and support of a multitude of poor people, and will be of great benefit to this kingdom in particular and to Great Britain in general, upon a suitable encouragement, the Petitioner, there fore, most humbly offers to set up and carry on the Hempen manufacture of Sail-cloth, of the growth of this country, in such a place or part of the kingdom as the House shall think most proper, being well assured of the same success therein as he had in the former, which will prove no less, if not more beneficial and advantageous to both nations." On reading this, it was ordered -- "That the consideration of the said petition be referred to the Committee appointed to inspect the state of the Linen manufacture, and that they do examine the matter thereof, and report the same, with their opinion therein, to the House, and that all members have voice who come." Accordingly the committee met, and, on Dec. 10, 1717,
Mr. Ward reported the following resolutions:--
Resolved -- "That it is the opinion of this Committee that settling manufactures of Hempen Sail-cloth in proper places would be highly advantageous to this kingdom."
Resolved -- "That it is the opinion of this Committee that Lewis Crommelin is a proper person to be employed in making settlements of the manufacture of Hempen Sail-cloth, in such places as the Trustees for improving the Hempen and Flaxen manufacture shall appoint, and subject to their directions."
Resolved -- "That an humble address be presented to his Majesty that he will be graciously pleased to order £1000 a year for the space of two years, to be paid to the Trustees for managing the Hempen and Flaxen manufacture, pursuant to the said Address of this House last session, whereby they may be enabled the better to promote the said manufactures."
Ordered -- "That such members of this House as are of his Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council, do attend his Grace the Lord Lieutenant, with the said Address, and desire his Grace will be pleased to lay the same before his Majesty as the Address of this House."
A Committee being appointed to make further inquiry on this interesting subject, presented the following report:--
"Your Committee find that the Trustees have, by their encouragement, promoted two very considerable manufactories for Sail-cloth in the Southern parts of this knigdom, at Rathkeale and Cork; and we find that the Trustees have now proposals before them from merchants of considerable substance in England, for setting up another Hempen manufactory in the county of Waterford, the expense of which will amount to a considerable sum."
Louis Crommelin had already received large sums.
In the account of the several sums of money for which the Vice-Treasure's have claimed credit as being paid by them for the use of the Hempen and Linen manufacture, in the year 1703 appears the following:-- "Paid the Earl of Abercorn and other Trustees of the Linen Manufacture, to be paid by them over to Mr. Louis Crommelin for erecting looms for weaving fine Linen Cloth, &c., ... ... ... ... £430 0 0."
In the year 1705 --
"Paid Mr. Louis Crommelin, Overseer of the Linen Manufacture, to complete the allowance due to him and his three assistants, for one year and three quarters, to Dec. 1704, by king's letters ... ... ... ...  £470 12 0."
"1705 -- Paid the Trustees appointed by her Majesty for carrying on the Linen Manufacture, and by them paid over to Mr. Louis Crommelin, on account thereof, to the 25th Dec, 1704, ... ... ... ...  £1515 9 8."
"More to be paid over to Sir Thomas Southwell, for several pieces of Sail-cloth, and to William Crommelin, assistant to Louis Crommelin, his salary to 25th Dec., 1704, ... ... ... ...  £337 18 8½."
"1711. -- Joseph Beaumont, on account of his services to the Linen Manufacture, ... ... ... ...  £100 0 0.
"1713. -- More to be paid him, .. ... ... ... ...  £100 0 0.
"1715. -- Louis Cromlin, . ...  ...  ... ... ... ...  £10 6 2.
"1715. -- John Latrobe, Waterford,  ... ... ...  £8 4 11½
"1719. -- Do.   do., .  ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...  £10 3 11½
"1720. -- Do.   do.,  . ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...  £7 9 1¼
"1721. -- Do.   do.,  . ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...  £8 2 11½
On the 4th day of August 1719, the Irish Parliament, in a Committee of Ways and Means, voted the following duties, to increase the revenue:-- "An additional duty on Tea of 12d. per lb.; Coffee, 3d. per lb,; and Chocolate 3d. per lb.; to commence the 1st of September next following," These increased duties were for the purpose of promoting the linen manufactures in the South. Leave was given to bring in the Bill, and it was ordered--
"That it be an instruction to the Committee to insert a clause or clauses in the said heads of a Bill, for applying the duties laid on tea, coffee, chocolate, and cocoa-nuts, for the use and encouragement of the Hempen and Flaxen manufactures."

The Bill passed on the 7th of August following, and a portion of the money thus raised was immediately applied for increasing the linen trade in Waterford, and establishing the sail-cloth factory. Some few sessions after, a committee of the House were appointed to report on the progress of the works: on the 8th of December, 1725, they made their report, one portion of which stated as follows:-- "Your Committee observe that the Trustees of the Hempen and Flaxen Manufactories have encouraged the setting up a new manufacture for hempen sail-cloth, at Rathbridge, in the county of Killare, and that this and the two manufactories at Cork, and one at Waterford, are in an improving way."

Mr. Maxwell, who was chairman of this Committee, further reported on the same day respecting Waterford:--
"That an arrear of £499 1s. 6d. was due to the Hempen manufactory of Waterford." This trade, which was carried on at first with so much energy and ability, after some little time again languished; but in the year 1746, a vigorous attempt was again made to resuscitate it, and this was mainly owing to the personal exertion of a noble descendant of the Refugees. Dr. Chenevix, who but the year before had been appointed to the See, desiring to assist and foster those who were, like himself, "the sons of the strangers," interested his patron and benefactor, the witty and urbane Philip Earl of Chesterlield (who had just been appointed Lord Lieutenant) in the linen manufacture of Waterford, and induced him to give it his patronage. From a residence in his diplomatic capacity at the Hague, where Doctor Chenevix was his chaplain, Lord Chesterfield had been enabled to judge of the great advantages derived by Holland from the manufactures of the refugees; and immediately active measures were undertaken to accomplish a revival of business in the city where his friend had undertaken the episcopal charge. An enterprising and skilful employer, named Patrick Smith, was induced, with his family, to remove from Belfast to Waterford. The entire expense of their transplantation was defrayed by the Trustees for promoting the Linen Manufacture, and an annual payment made to them of £300 per annum, until the looms were in full operation. Two Dutch families of French descent were brought over to instruct in the making of tapes and bobbins; and fifty Protestant families were conveyed from the North of Ireland, most of them, if not all, descendants of the Huguenot settlers in Lisburn and Dundalk.

The extent of the operations of this family may be gathered from the petition which was presented by them to the House of Commons, on the 24th of January, 1758, when a sum not exceeding £2,000 was voted to them as an assistance in their undertaking; and a second petition on the 3rd of Nov., 1761, which embodies the substance of the former one. It was as follows:--
"A Petition of Patrick Smith, Arthur Smith, Chalmers Smith, Mary Smith, Sarah Smith, Jane Smith, Anne Smith, Agatha Cornelia Smith, Mary Smith, junr., Elinor Smith, Elizabeth Smith, and Helena Amelia Smith, of the city of Waterford, linen thread, tape, bobbin and boss manufacturers, was presented to the House and read, setting forth:-- That, in year 1740, Petitioners, Patrick Smith and his family, consisting of his wife, four sous, and eight daughters, [-- ? --] by the Earl of Chesterfield, and enouraged by the Right Honourable and Honourable the Trustees of the Linen Manufacture, removed from Belfast to Waterford, in order to introduce and establish the Linen Manufacture in the South; and by giving encouragement there, prevailed on fifty Protestant families to settle there. That Petitioners, Patrick and Arthur Smith, by their contract with the Trustees, were allowed £501 15s. 0d., to defray the expense of removing themselves and the colony they carried wth them, and to purchase looms and other machines, and were to receive for the support of their family, from the year 1746, to 1750, £300 annually; for the year 1750, £250; and for every year after, during contract, £200 annually. The poor in that city being inured to sloth and idleness rendered the undertaking very difficult; but by the industry and perseverance of petitioners the intention of the Trustees to raise a spirit of industry was so effectually answered, that though there were only 297 hanks of yarn spun in the first year, there were in the second 2,958, in the third 18,748, and a great increase in proportion since. As the greatest part of the petitioner's family consisted of females, who could not be profitably employed in other branches of the linen manufacture, they, in the year 1750, on £100 being given by the Trustees, began the thread manufacture, by which a great number of hands, before useless to, and a burthen on, the public, are constantly and usefully employed. This branch has been so much improved and extended that, from 378lbs. manufactured in the year 1750, they manufactured no less than 4,511 pounds, 4 ounces, from 3d. to 32s. per ounce, and would have increased so as to have exported greater quantities could they have extended their credit to obtain a fund for that purpose. That petitioners, attentive to every measure by which the linen manufacture might be extended, and themselves rendered worthy the bountiful encouragement of the public, and on being well informed of the great advantages arising to the Dutch by their exports of thread, tape, and bobbins to England, and having, on examining the books of entries in the custom-house of London, found that from the 11th of September, 1752, to the 15th of October following, not less than £11,917 12s. value (on a moderate calculation) of thread, tape, bobbin, and inkle, was imported and entered from France, Holland, and Hamburg, they did, in the year 1752, at very great expense, attempt the manufactures of tape and bobbin, which great undertaking they supported till all the apparatus was complete, by borrowing from time to time such sums as were necessary, and receiving from the Dublin Society £500 to help them till a more suitable bounty could be obtained. That, in 1757, petitioners petitioned the Honourable House of Commons, who were pleased, on the merits of the petitioners being fully proved, to grant £2,000 to enable petitioners to continue their useful design, till an opportunity should offer for receiving such aid as might enable them to carry it into full execution. That, at this time the Dutch, jealous of being rivalled in so valuable a branch of their trade, reduced the price of threads, tapes, and bobbins, so low that petitioiicrs, for want of a sufficient fund to carry them on in an extensive manner, could derive no advantage from what they manufactured, though they had borrowed the sum of £10,000, £3,384 13s. 8½d. of that sum being sunk in buildings, erecting mills, looms, and machines, and in payments to two Dutch families for instruction in the art of manufacturing tapes and bobbins; which, joined to the rents they pay, swallowed up the profits on the remainnig sum, which was employed in manufacturing; and, as petitioners' credit is in England, they have within these two years, on the supplies being raised to carry on the war, been obliged to pay in near £3,000, on their creditors demanding it, by which petitioners are greatly distressed, and many of their machines useless for want of money to work them.
"That petitioners, knowing the manufactures could not be established in their full utility to the public till the husbandmen were led into the cultivation of their land for raising flax, did, in 1758, plan a scheme for raising a fund for premiums, which scheme was laid before several nobelmen and gentlemen, and the Earls of Grandison,, Tyrone, Besborough, and Donegal, the Lords Loftus and Beresford, the Lord Bishop of Waterford. the speaker of the Honourable House of Common, subscribed to it; the scheme was published and a society appointed to direct the payment according to the merits of the claimants; and in 1750 premiums were given on 1,032 stone weight of flax, and 2,654 hanks of yarn spun of said flax and sold at the public market; and in 1760, the quantity increased to 2,400 stone weight of flax, and 5,059 hanks of yarn; and petitioners are hereby of opinion that, by continuing the premiums two or three years, the raising flax may become of great use by being more generally used in the South. That, in March 1759, petitioners were applied to by the most considerable dealers in London for their threads, tapes, and bobbin, the additional duties on importation of those articles from foreigners being so heavy, they would have engaged for very considerable quantities from petitioners, who, for want of a sufficient sum to increase their manufactures, were obliged to decline accepting a proposal so advantageous to the public and themselves. How exactly petitioners have fullilled the engagements to the Trustees they hereby refer themselves to that honourable Board, and for the happy consequences that have arisen from their settlement in the South they would appeal to the gentlemen of that country, particularly in Waterford and its neighbourhood, who know how different the state of that country is from what it was before they settled in it. Petitioners' works have been seen by several gentlemen of rank and fortune, who were pleased to express their satisfaction at seeing so great an undertaking under the direction of so numerous a family; the apparatus petitioners now have would employ 1,417 men, women, and children, in spinning, winding, weaving, spooling, skeaning, and bleaching, besides those employed in raising the flax and preparing it for spinning. But, amidst all the advantages arising from the industry of petitioners, whose time and industry' has for fifteen years been entirely devoted to the introduction and establishment of these manufactures, they, from innumerable losses and disappointments necessarily attending the introduction of infant manufactories, have been unavoidably led into the disbursements of very large sums, a burthen under which they must infallibly sink unless timely support is offered them by the public. Petitioners, therefore, most humbly entreat the House to take their case into consideration, and to grant them such relief and assistance as to its great wisdom shall seem fit."

On the petition being read, it was referred to a committee consisting of Lord Beresford, member for Coleraine; Mr. Le Hunte, member for Wexford; and some others; to be considered on the Friday following. The committee accordingly met, and prepared the following report, which was handed into the House on the 9th of November:--
"MR. SPEAKER, -- The Committee appointed to examine the matter of the petition of Patrick Smith and several others, of the city of Waterford, linen thread, tape, bobbin, and boss manufacturers, have accordingly examined and considered the matter to them referred, and have desired me to report the same, as it appeared to them, with their opinion thereupon, to the House, which is as follows:--
"Arthur Smith being sworn, said -- That the family, consisting of fourteen, removed from the North to Waterford in 1746, to introduce and carry on the linen manufacture, by encouragement of the Linen Board. That, when the family first came to Waterford, there was little or no appearance of the linen manufacture in that country. That they brought about fifty Protestant families, who were mostly employed by the Smiths in the linen manufacture. That the encouragement from the Linen Board was not sufficient to establish the manufacture in that country. That there were not more than 300 hanks of yarn to be bought when tliey first came to Waterford, which would not make more than five pieces of linen. That near 5,000 pieces of cloth have been made in and about the city of Waterford this last year, to the value of between £10,000 and £12,000. That they purchased flax and sold it in pounds and small parcels to encourage spinners, which increased the spinning to 3,000 hanks the next year; and it has increased every year since, so that this year the family bought 6,000 hanks, besides what others have bought, which may amount to as much more.
That several persons of property have engaged in this manufacture since the family came to Waterford. That they now carry on the making of linens, tapes, bobbins, boss, and thread, &c. That there would be great demand for tapes, &c., from England and the plantations, if they could undersell the Dutch. That the family are at great expense in setting up the apparatus for this manufacture of tapes, &c. That they have had application made to them by considerable dealers in London to furnish them with tapes and bobbins; that they would contract for £10,000 worth yearly, if they could be afforded as cheap as the Dutch. That the family wanting a sufficient capital, is the reason they cannot extend it to a greater degree. That there are two kinds of tapes made by this family that are not made by any others in this kingdom. That it would take £9,000 to employ the machines already erected for these manufactures, and to supply them constantly with materials. That about £4,500 is now employed in these manufactures by this family, and £5,200 has been expended in setting up the manufacture. That they cannot have a return in less than seven months, and for a great part in not less than thirteen months, and they must pay ready money for all the materials. That Parliamentary aid could procure them credit, so as to extend the manufacture greatly, and give the family a reasonable profit. That if all the machines were constantly at work upwards of 1400 persons might be usefully employed. That they could not enter into such contracts as have been proposed to them from England, by the most considerable dealers in these articles, unless they are encouraged by Parliament."

It was resolved by the House, on the motion of the Committee -- "That the Petitioner proved the allegation of the petition. That the Petitioner deserves the aid of Parliament. That the report be referred to the Committee of Supply."

Following the example of the Smiths, some of the inhabitants of the city and its neighbourhood entered upon the same speculation, and sought to revive the trade, and to receive a subsidy from the Parliament in aid of the undertaking. On the Kilkenny side, John Green, Esq., of Greenville, petitioned, praying aid, and described himself as the first founder of the linen manufacture in the county of Kilkenny. His petition is dated the 3rd of Nov., 1755, and he describes it as "flourishing and extending itself with great credit," The year following brought a similar petition from Robert Snow, of Waterford; it is thus recorded:-- "13th March, 1756. -- A petition of Robert Snow, of the city of Waterford, linen manufacturer and bleacher, praying aid and encouragement, was presented to the House, and read, and referred to Committee. -- March 14th, 1756." The Committee reported -- "That Petitioner had proved his allegation, and deserved aid and encouragement; and referred to a Committee of the whole House."

For many years this manufacture was a staple trade in this city, and its guild one of the wealthiest and most prosperous. To Louis Crommelin and John Latrobe in the first instance, to Bishop Chenevix in the next, Waterford was indebted for it as a source of industrial employment. Since the invention of power-looms it has completely vanished. A few years ago a manufactory of sail-cloth was attempted, but was soon given up as a failure; and now, in the cloister of the Franciscan Abbey, and close beside the French Church, a manufacture of coarse tarpaulin-cloth and bacon-wrappiug is all that remains of this important trade, which was once so flourishing, and which had gathered together so large a number of the Huguenot congregation of the Rev. James Denis.

The hearers were not, however, confined to the industrious classes above referred to. The medical profession in Waterford, at this time, was well represented by two worthy members of it, both of whom appear to have belonged to the little band, who preferred freedom of religious opinions and a quiet home amongst a strange people, to an abode in the land they loved, but where their conscience was at the will of a despot or of his bigotted advisers, who would not even allow a Huguenot physician to follow his profession. The names of those two worthies were, Dr. Peter De Rante, and Doctor Jacques Reynette. The former had married into the Alcock family, who were chief rulers in the Corporation, and to him was entrusted the care of the sick poor throughout the entire city; for which the munificent (!) salary of £10 per annum was voted to him by the Council. On the 28th of July, 1722, when a fit of economy had seized the burgomasters, the French minister's allowance was thrown out by the learned forty who composed this body, and who were styled by the wags "the forty thieves;" and, at the same time, Dr. De Rante, "the French doctor," was also superseded; but in the following year the doctor again seems to have made friends, for he was restored at Michaelmas, l723. His first wife was taken from him soon after his marriage. A large stone slab covers her remains in the French Church, with the following inscription:--
"Mary De Rant, alias ALCOCK,
died ye 17th of January, 1716, aged 33 years."

The baptisms of several of his children, by the Rev. J. Denis, are also recorded.

Mary Alcock was not, however, long mourned over. On the 5th of December, 1717, Doctor Peter De Rante and Miss Anne Pyke were united together in holy matrimony, by Mr. Dean Ecles, in the Cathedral, and the widower was comforted. But his first love claimed him back again, when he was summoned to his last resting place; for on the 27th of January, 1756, Doctor Peter De Rante was laid beside her in the southern angle of the choir of the French Church.

Of Doctor Jacques Reynette wo have even less to say. The family tradition tells that he was but a boy when, with his father, he fled from Languedoc. The family estates were claimed and restored in after years to a Senior branch. The parish register records that --
"Jan. 23rd 1720. -- Doctor James Reynette was buried by Mr. Denis in the French Church."

Some months before, his daughter was provided for to his satisfaction: the following is the entry in the register: "July, 23rd 1719. Captain John Ramsay and Miss Charlotte Reynette, both of Saint Michael's parish, were married by Mr. Jacob Denis in Doctor Reynette's house." The name of Ramsay was well known in connection with Waterford, for many years after, through most parts of Ireland; as Ramsay's Waterford Chronicle, one of the first provincial newspapers established in Ireland, owes its origin to Captain Ramsay's son; and it is a singular circumstance that the second Waterford Newspaper was also started by the descendant of another of the refugees, Mr. Fleury. The good old doctor's descendants, in the succeeding generations, have served both Church and State, and served them well. They still remain, settled in Waterford or near it.

Amongst them, this day we have a worthy alderman, a skilful physician, and a brave Peninsular officer, who still can tell of the story "sent down from sire to son," how Louvois' tyranny drove forth the first of their name to Ireland as an alien and a stranger; and in the collateral branches are many "brave striplings and bright-eyed maidens," all of whom claim as their progenitor the brave old man whose family left rich estates and personal property behind for conscience' sake.

To be continued...

The above article is reproduced from the Ulster Journal of Archaeology, vol. 4, 1856.

Wednesday 26 February 2014

What the Minutes Say

We are but minutes, little things --
Each one furnished with sixty wings,
With which we fly on our unseen track;
And not a minute ever comes back.

We are but minutes; each one bears
A little burden of joys and cares;
Take patiently the minutes of pain;
The worst of minutes cannot remain.

We are but minutes. When we bring
A few drops from pleasure's spring,
Taste their sweetness while ye may;
It takes but a minute to fly away.

We are but minutes. Use us well;
For how we are used we must one day tell.
Who uses minutes, has hours to use;
Who loses minutes, whole years must lose.

Author Unknown 

Published in The Witness, 13th February 1914

Thursday 20 February 2014

The French Settlers in Ireland - No 7

The Settlement in Waterford

By The Rev. Thomas Gimlette, Waterford

From the earliest record of our local history, Waterford has ever afforded a home and a shelter for the foreigner. The name of the barony in which the city and its liberties are comprised (Gualtier) signifies "the land of the stranger;" the Danes made it one of their first settlements; the Norman knights who followed Strongbow and Raymond le Gros soon stormed its battlements and made it their head-quarters; the Templars and Knights of St. John established themselves here, after their return from the Crusades; Dominicans and Franciscans from France and Spain were succeeded by burgesses from Bristol, who "drove a thriving trade," and by troopers from Gloucester, who gladly gave up "their warring and their fighting" for a secure settlement in a rich and loyal city. The sons of the strangers are now some of its most respected citizens.

The easy access to the harbour of Waterford, and its peculiar advantages for commercial enterprise, point out at once a sufficient reason why so many settlers should from time to time take up their abode on the banks of that beautiful river, which Spenser, in his Faerie Queene, describes as
"The first, the gentle Shure that making way
By sweet Clonmel adorns rich Waterford."

War brought some; religion others; but more came for trade to a large and thriving sea-port, and succeeded in raising its importance in the several countries to which their ships resorted. But, besides its natural facilities, Waterford was a city which had long enjoyed the favour of the British Crown. The franchises and immunities granted to its inhabitants by King John, which were confirmed and increased by his successors, rendered its merchants and traders free of "coquett and custome" in every part of England and Ireland, and enabled them as well to import as to export a considerable share of merchandise with peculiar means of profit and little risk of loss.

At one time, in the days of Henry the 7th, the Irish traffic with the south of France for Rhenish and Gascoigne wine was almost monopolised by Waterford; the intercourse consequent thereupon was, of course, considerable. In other branches of commercial pursuit the same brisk interchange was carried on, the same advantages fullowed, and in the succeeding reigns the Urbs Intacta became the great port of transit, not alone to England and Wales, but also to Flanders,a Spain, and many parts of France, as soon as the proclamations of peace enabled the voyagers to do so with impunity. In the middle of the 16th century even, the continental traders had discovered the peculiar advantages of a residence here; an interesting record of which for many years was to be seen on one of the beautiful columns of the old Waterford Cathedral, in the form of an ancient monument to the memory of a merchant born in French Flanders, who died here A.D. MDXLV. Although this was much defaced by Cromwell's soldiery, from the circumstance of the principal figure being an effigy in a kneeling position, and although it was completely destroyed when the ancient edifice was taken down, yet the inscription has been preserved in the valuable histories of Smith and Ryland. It was as follows:--
"Nobilis hic situs est Guilhelmus Clusius, ille
Mercator Fidus cui Patria alma Brugae
Cecropius, Cimonq; Cudonq; Corinthus alter
Pectore Munifico tum Pictate pari
Nec Minor is Craeso, Mida Crassove beatus
Divitiis, Placidus Indole Plebicola.
Obiit Waterfordae Hiberniae Anno MDXLV.

Beneath this were the following verses in the Walloon French, placed in two columns:--
La Noble Renomèe
Du mortel sans remort
D'Art vive et animee
Triumphe de la Mort.

Je dis Lhumain en somme
Periclitant c'a bas
Qui le sien Corp's consomme
Aux immortel's es bas.

Bruges ville Flandrine
. . . . . . . . . . more
. . . . . . . . . . peine
. . . . . . . . . . faites decore.

Au Temple de Memoire
Appendu est son nom
Bruges das rememoire
A tout heur son renom.

Bruges erie et lamente
Apres son Citadin
Waterford s'en angmente
Daviour faict tel Butin.
Le Noble de La seluse
Jadis contre le tans,
D'honneur, et grace infuse
Arma ses heurs et an's.

Com tois et magnifique
Fut autant que Cimon
Clement et pacifique
Cent fois plus que Cydon.

De son hereuse race
A laisse un rameau
Qui ampleete et embrasse
Virtu d'un Sainet Cerveau.

Anvers, jout pour l'heure
De ses pullons heureus
Illustrateurs J'asseure
De leurs noms vertueus.

Le Ciel inaccessible
Nous rechante hautement
Del leneluse paisible
Son duten Sautement.

On the pillars were figures representing truth and piety, and above, the following sentence:--
"Domine secundum actum meum noli me judicare, Nihil dignum in conspectu tuo egi."

From these circumstances, it will not appear strange that at a later period of its history a goodly number of the FRENCH HUGURENOT REFUGEES should seek for a home in a city where their habits of industry would meet with a fitting reward; where a constant intercourse might be expected, not only with the land of their fathers, but also with their brethren in Holland, Germany, and England; and from which a voyage of a few short days would bring them tidings of the very spot which they had loft for conscience sake. But besides these reasons, there were others equally strong, which prompted the men of Picardy and Languedoc to establish themselves in the spot where the Norman knight, the Franciscan friar, and the vintner from Bourdeaux, had already been planted generation after generation, to fight with all, pray with all, or fill a bumper for all, according to the times in which they made their settlement.

James the First, in consequence of a riot at the time of his proclamation, had possessed himself of the Great Charter of the city, and at his death it still remained unrestored. In 1626, Charles the First, on the petition of the citizens, granted them a new Charter, restoring all the ancient privileges, and bestowing many new ones. This new charter, for which the citizens were compelled to pay the large sum of three thousand pounds, was followed by a second one, which was dated February the 19th, 1631, and granted to them important rights of Admiralty and jurisdictions over the fisheries. The trade and manufacture again improved; and although the rebellion of 1641, and the engagements of Cromwell and Ormonde before its very walls in 1650, tended to check commercial enterprise, it was only for a time, and again the maritime powers of the continent endeavoured to trade with the freemen "on the banks of the SHURE."

The Corporation and principal inhabitants of the city were at this period Protestant. The Puritan followers of Cromwell had settled here in considerable numbers; and the intercourse with the Calvinistic Protestants of Holland, France, and Geneva, was kept up by the unity which existed in their religious feelings and opinions. In the year 1662, the Duke of Ormonde being viceroy, a Bill was brought into the Irish Parliament, then sitting at Dublin, entitled "an Act for encouraging Protestant Strangers and others to inhabit Ireland." It received the Royal assent on the 10th of September -- William Halsey and John Eyre, the members for Waterford, assisting in its becoming law. The Roman Catholic merchants of the city immediately memorialed the Lord Lieutenant, alleging that they were obliged "to pay strangers duties for goods." The Mayor (Bolton's) reply to his Excellency was, "that they were not freemen, had taken no oath of supremacy, and they may and do harbour not only goods of stranger's in his Majesty's dominions, but of the subjects of other princes."b

In 1692, the first Parliament after the revolution was convened in Dublin by Henry, Lord Viscount Sidney. Its first act was "the recognition of their Majesties' undoubted right to the crown of Ireland." its next, "An act for the encouragement of Protestant strangers to settle in the Kingdom of Ireland." Charles the Second's act had continuance only for seven years from the date of its passing in 1662. The number of French Huguenots who had fought under King William in Ireland, who were now about being disbanded, and whose abiding in the country was earnestly desired by all who favoured the Prince of Orange, rendered the renewal of the Bill most desirable; and it was hurried through both Houses without discussion. Anthony Luxberry and Henry Nicholls were the citizens representing Waterford who aided in its passing; and, according to the Journal of the House, "nemine contradicente." Its first provision was as follows:-- "That all and every part of King Charles the Second's Act for encouraging Protestant strangers and others to inhabit and plant in the Kingdom of Ireland, which is now expired, shall be in full force and virtue, to all intents and purposes whatsoever, for and during the term of seaven years from the end of this present session of Parliament, and no longer." The next demanded that the Protestant settler should take the oaths of allegiance and supremacy in open court at the Assizes or Sessions, before three Justices of the Peace, the fee for which should be one shilling, and without which they were not to be naturalised. The last had reference to their faith and worship; and thus it ran:-- "And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that all Protestant strangers and foreigners who, at any time hereafter, shall come into this kingdom, and shall take the Oaths and subscribe the declaration herein above mentioned, shall have and enjoy the free exercise of their religion, and have liberty of meeting together publickly for the worship of God, and of hearing divine service and performing other religious duties in their own several languages; and also according to the several rites used in their own countries, any law or statute to the contrary notwithstanding."

This "Act of encouragement" would induce many of the Huguenot officers and soldiers to remain as settlers; but it was also desirable that men skilled in manufacture should be prevailed on to come over and increase the Protestant population. The linen trade was one which seemed to afford the best inducement; and, accordingly, we find the Corporation of Waterford, at a council meeting held on the 27th of March, 1693, passing the following resolution on the subject of the Protestant refugees:--

Ordered March 27th, 1693. -- "That this city and liberties do provide habitations for fifty families of the French Protestants, to drive a trade of linen manufacture, they bringing with them a stock of money and materials for their subsistence till flax can be sown and produced on the lands adjacent; and that the freedom of the city be given them gratis; and the Mayor and Recorder are desired to acquaint the Lord Bishop of this diocese therewith." This Bishop was Dr. Nathaniel Foy;c the Mayor, Daniel Lloyde; the Recorder, Minard Christain; all three remarkable for their Protestant zeal.

By the exertions of Bishop Foy a suitable place of worship was soon provided for the refugees; for although many of the Huguenots had been more inclined to the Genevan form of worship, yet in Waterford they conformed to the discipline of the bishop who was so kind a patron. A pious pastor arrived to officiate for them, his name was David Gervais. The Corporation voted a grant of £40 per annum as a salary for the French minister, and the choir of the old Franciscan Abbey was fitted up with neatness and simplicity as the French Church. The civic authorities, however, although recording this grant, seem to have made little provision for the payment of it; but in consequence of a remonstrance addressed to them by the minister, we find that, during the Mayoralty of Theodore Jones, in June, 1702, the following resolution was agreed to:-- "Upon reading the petition of David Gervais, French minister, it was ordered -- That his salary of £40 per annum be continued, and the arrear paid." This was continued to him till his death. Bishop Foy had died on the 31st of Dec. 1707, but his successor, Dr. Mills, continued his kindness. The Rev. David Gervais was promoted in 1713 by him to be one of the prebendaries of Lismore Cathedral, and was installed for Modelligo. He did not, however, resign his charge over the church which he had planted, for in the next year the following record is found in the Cathedral Piegistry at Waterford:--
"1714, April 12th. -- Lieutenant Peter Besard Delamaindre, and Mrs. Jane Dubay, were married by Mr. David Gervais, in the French Church."

Nor did he long enjoy his increase of stipend, for in the same Registry, a few pages farther on, we find the notice of his interment by the Dean of Waterford:--
"1716, July 6th. The Rev. Mr. David Gervais, prebendary of Modelligo and minister of the French Church, was buried this day by the Rev. Mr. Dean Ecles, in Christ Church."

Lieutenant Delamaindre also left his wife for the second time a widow; but both good ladies seem to have been cared for by the country of their adoption. In a return made to the Irish House of Commons, Dec. 19, 1756, of half-pay officers' widows enjoying pensions, we have -- "Mrs. Jane Delamaindre, a pension of £20 per annum;" and on the civil establishment at the same time -- "Mrs. Mary Gervais, a pensioner of the crown, for £54 15s."

Another branch of the Gervais family appears to have settled in Lismore, but what the particular connection was cannot be traced fiom the record. That they were of the same stock may, however, be gathered from the following entry in the Waterford Register:--
"1714. Sept, 15th. William, son of the Rev. Isaac Gervais and Catherine his wife, of Lismore, buried in the French Church."

In 1708 the Rev. Isaac Gervais was appoiiited one of the Vicars Choral of Lismore. In 1724 he was made prebendary of Kilrosantie; and in 1743 Dean of Tuam. He died in 1756, and was buried in Lismore. On his appointment to the Deanery he resigned the Vicar Choralship of Lismore in favour of his sun, the Rev. Henry Gervais, who was succeeded in 1761 by another descendant of the refugees, the Rev. Antoine Fleury. In 1754 the Rev. Henry Gervais was collated to the prebendary of Tullaghorton. On the 27th May, 1768, he was appointed Treasurer of Cashel, which office he resigned in 1772. He was then appointed Archdeacon of Cashel, and prebend of Doon in the same archdiocese. His collation for both was dated September 18th, 1772. He died in 1790, and was buried in Lismore. His descendants are still to be found in that district, intermarried with the highest families in the county of Waterford.

The second minister of the French Church of Waterford was the Rev. James Denis. The members of the Corporation at this period were not inclined to the same liberality as before, being engaged at deadly feud with Bishop Thomas Mills, who succeeded the good Bishop Foy. Their allowance to the minister of the French Church was a scant one indeed, as appears from the following entry in the Corporation books:--
"Jany. 22, 1717. -- Upon reading the petition of the Rev. Mr. Jacobus Denis, Minister of the French Church of Waterford, setting forth that he has a great family of a wife and eight children, and that this board did give a yearly pension to the late Minister of the French Church, and humbly prayed to have a pension allowed him. It is ordered that the said Mr. James Denis be allowed £5 from out of the city revenue during the pleasure of this board, and that to commence from Michlemas last."

This pittance was, however, continued for only five years. On the 28th of July, 1722, it was ordered by the Council "That the Rev. Mr. Denis's salary, minister of the French Church, be suspended." He was, however, remembered by his bishop; and on the 28th of November, 1729, we find him collated to the prebend of Donoghmore, in the diocese of Lismore, on the promotion of the Rev. Hugh Barbon. About the same period also he appears to have received assistance in the ministry of the French Church. In the Visitation Book for the diocese of Waterford, in 1731, we find the following entry made respecting it, and the appearance of the clergy who served its congregation:--
"Jacobus Denis, Cler. Minister Eccliae Galliae compt
Anthony Frank, Literatus, Eccliae Galleiae Excusatur."

Of Anthony Frank no other notice is recorded; but as Mr. Denis was not succeeded in the prebendary until 1735, when it was occupied by the Rev. Edward Thomas, afterwards Archdeacon of Lismore, it is to be presumed that his ministry lasted for the space of twenty years, and that the little colony had been still fostered and encouraged by those who so gladly welcomed them on their first arrival. Prior to the appointment of Mr. James Denis as pastor, we find from the records that Mr. William Denis officiated in the church. Under date July 11th, 1714, we read as follows:--
"Mr. Benigne Bellet, the wife of Mr. Isaac Bellet, of St. Johns, was buried by Mr. William Denis, in the French Church."

From the fact that the Rev. James Denis and the Rev. Antoine Frank were both cited to the episcopal visitation it is evident that the bishop claimed jurisdiction over the French Church and congregation. No peculiar parochial charge was allocated to the pastor, nor did the settlers confine themselves to any particular quarter of the city. From the parochial registers they appear to have settled in the heart of the city, within the walls, and to have been scattered through the seven parishes. And, although they worshipped in their own tongue, and in their own church, they were time after time elected to the chief offices in the churches of the city.

Amongst the churchwardens and vestrymen, the following names prove how highly the citizens valued the new settlers and their descendants. In St. Patrick's Parish appear the names:-- Henri Blanche, Alexander D'Maison, John D'Maison, Tobias Linnegar, Samuel Odcroft, Anthonie Hagerein, Hector Boisrond, Marquis Guillard, Germain Luné. In St. Peter's, and St. John's, amongst the very last churchwardens appointed before the union with St. Patrick's, appear Charles L'Maistre, Nicholas Sprusson, Peter Duclà, John Shelmadine, Captain Sautelle, and Francois Spurrier. In St. Olave's, James H. Reynette, Thomas Latrobe, and Jean Vinson. In the Cathedral, (Trinity) Messrs. Gayott, and St. Legere.

They were also honoured members of the Corporation. In the records of the City Council, during this period, appear the names of Chaigneau, Gayott, Vashon, and Ayrault, as common council men. In 1707, John Espaignet was appointed sheriff of the city. In 1709 Jeremy Gayott was sheriff. The charge of the water-works of the city was entrusted, in 1719, to Alderman Vashon; and in 1726 he filled the office of mayor. In 1735 Peter Vashon was sheriff; and in the years 1738 and 1739 Simon Vashon, jun., was mayor for these successive periods. In 1755 James Henry Reynette was sheriff; and, at a later period, he also occupied the civic chair for two successive years. Several entries are found of the admission of French Refugees to their franchise, in accordance with the bye-laws, during the early part of the Rev. James Denis's pastoral charge. Many of these were engaged in commercial pursuits, and derived considerable immunities from their being naturalised as citizens of Waterford. All hope was debarred them of returning to the districts of Languedoc, or to the provinces of the Lyonnais and Touraine; and the proclamation of Queen Anne's parliament in 1709, which established their right of citizenship, encouraged them to settle down to the export and import of merchandise. In the immediate neighbourhood of the French Church several of their warehouses were situated. The wholesale wine trade has since that period flourished in close contiguity. The busiest general emporiums were even then, as now, nigh at hand; and their ships, well freighted, went and returned to every well known sea-port either at home or abroad; or were moored close at hand in the secure haven of the Suir.

It would appear that many of those who were thus occupied in trade brought over with them a supply of French specie, which was freely taken and offered in the mutual interchange of business in the city. A proclamation from the crown, issued by the Lords Justices of Ireland, 29th August, 1737, ordering that the value of French gold should be reduced to a certain standard, created no inconsiderable alarm; and on the 24th day of October, 1737, a petition was presented to the Irish House of Commons from "the merchants and traders, inhabitants of Waterford," setting forth -- "That several branches of trade in this kingdom, before the issuing of the late proclamation for reducing the gold coin, were brought very low, and were daily decaying, occasioned, as the petitioners apprehend, by a proclamation which formerly issued in this kingdom for adding to the weight of French and Spanish gold." The petitioners prayed the house "to lay before his Majesty such a method for a regulation not only of the current coin of this kingdom, but also of all foreign coin, as may most tend to the advantage of his Majesty, and the interest of his subjects of this kingdom, and the trade of it." The subject of the petition was postponed for consideration until the 26th day of October, on which day, after several divisions, the Government succeeded in defeating the object of the petitioners. Ambrose Congreve, who was at the head of a bankiiig establishment in this city, and who had several times contested its representation, appeared to be the principal mover in this matter. His partner was Samuel Parker; and, in the following session, a petition being presented against them from several traders of Waterford, complaining that they had fraudulently obtained possession of ships and property lodged in the cellars of the French Church, belonging to the Messrs. Weeks, who had become bankrupts and absconded, the House took the matter into consideration, and appointed a committee, who brought in a report fully vindicating the fair fame and lionourable dealings of Messrs. Congreve and Barker in this matter. In this report, which is published at full length in the Appendix to the Journal of the Irish House of Commons, frequent reference is made to the cellars adjoining to the French Church: and the following is a copy of an account rendered of some of the property contained in one of them, which is interesting as showing the relative value of the several articles contained therein at that time as compared with the present:--

One Hogshead of Mountain, wanting five Gallons, ... ... ... ... ...
£ 84 7
Two Puncheons and One-leaf Spirits, 255 Gallons, @ 2s 6d. ... 
Twenty-four Empty Casks, ... .. ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 
One Puncheon, three Jars, and nine Bottles of Rum, ... ... ... ...
A Parcel of Oats, ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...  
A Parcel of Cheese,  .. ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...
Four Boxes of Lemons, almost rotten,  ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 
A small Parcel of Benecarlo and some old Hock, . ... ... ... ... ...
A small Parcel of Straw Mats, ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 
Three Firkins of Neat Tongues, 2½ dozen each, @ 6d, . ... ... ...
A small Parcel of Train Oil,  ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...
167 Barrels of Salt, @ 7s,  ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...

The forgoing extracts prove that a spirit of commercial enterprise had enabled some of the refugees to acquire wealth and station: but in the manufactureing field they were also ever strivin to win an honest independence. The original resolution of the Corporation embraced the idea that establishing a linen manufacture, for which the settlers had already become famous. Of the several branches which had been introduced already into the North of Ireland, the manufacture of sail-cloth seemed the most suited for a commercial sea-port like Waterford, as well for consumption as for exportation; and after some little time a vigorous endeavour was made to establish this here.

To be continued...

[a] In 1484 a shipment by some merchants of Waterford to Sluys, in Flanders, in preference to Clais, raised the question of Ireland being bound by statutes made in England, which was finally determined in the affirmative.

[b] In the new rules given at the Council Chamber of Dublin, Sept. 23, 1672, Waterford is especially named as one of the cities chosen for the encouragement of the settlement of Protestant foreigners.

[c] Dr. Foy, who had himself suffered for adherence to the Protestant religion, endeavoured to strengthen the cause in Waterford by plabting a colony of the refugees; and establishing a Protestant school for the sons of the Waterford freeman.

The above article is reproduced from the Ulster Journal of Archaeology, vol. 4, 1856.

Thursday 13 February 2014

The French Settlers in Ireland - No 6 (pt 3)

The Huguenot Colony at Portarlington, in the Queen's County.


by Sir Erasmus D. Borrowes, Bart.

In the early part of the last century Margaret Sabatier enjoyed from the government a pension of £36 10s. a year. "John Bion sometime Priest and Curate of the parish of Ursy, in Burgundy, and Chaplain to the Superbe galley in the French service," gives the following account of the sufferings of Monr Francois Sabatier:--
"It is certain that though there was at first a very great number of Protestants condemned to the gallies, the bastinado and other torments have destroyed above three-fourths of them, and the most of those who are still alive are in dungeons; as Messieurs Beausillon, De Seres, and Sabatier, who are confined in the dungeon at Chateau D'If (a fort built on a rock in the sea, three miles from Marseilles,) but the generous constancy of this last, about eight or ten months ago, deserves a place in history, and challenges the admiration of all true Protestants. Monsieur Sabatier, whose charity and zeal equals that of the primitive Christians, having a little money, distributed it to his brethren and fellow-sufferers in the gallies; but the Protestants being watched more narrowly than the rest, he could not do it so secretly; he was discovered, and brought before Monsieur De Monmort, Intendant of the gallies at Marseilles; being asked, he did not deny the fact. Monsr Monmort, not only promised him his pardon but a reward, if he would declare who it was that had given him that money. Monsieur Sabatier modestly answered, that he should be guilty of ingratitude before God and man, if by any confession he should bring them into trouble who had been so charitable to him; that his person was at his disposal, but he desired to be excused, as to the secret expected from him. The Intendant replied, he had a way to make him tell, and that immediately; he then sent for some Turks, who at his command stript Sabatier perfectly naked, and beat him with the ends of ropes and with cudgels for three days, at several times; and, seeing this did not prevail over this generous confessor, he himself (which never happened to an Intendant before) turned executioner, striking him with his cane, and exclaiming to the bystanders, 'see what a devil of a religion this is.' These were his own expressions, as is credibly reported by persons, and indeed the gazettes and public letters gave us the same account. At last, seeing he was ready to expire, he commanded him into a dungeon, where, in spite of all torments, Providence has preserved him to this day." Monsr Sabatier was living in 1707. A member of the family, and a worthy magistrate of a county, still resides not many miles from the original refuge. We were forcibly struck by a happy and appropriate application of the motto of the Sabatiers, "Toujours prêt.":-- from Scotland's illustrious bard we learn that James V. of Scotland graced the shield of Sir John Scott, of Thirlestane, with proud armorial distinctions
           "For faith 'mid feudal jars;
           What time, save Thirlestane alone,
           Of Scotland's stubborn barons none
           Would march to Southern wars;
           And hence in fair remembrance worn
           Yon sheaf of spears his crest has borne;
           Hence his high motto stands revealed
           "Ready, aye ready," for the field."
The gallant knight, with devoted loyalty, was ever ready at his monarch's call to marshal his forces in the field under the bannered lion of Scotland, and he reaped an earthly reward. But Francois Sabatier armed with the sword of the spirit, and the shield of faith, was ever ready "in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults," with an unshaken constancy and a courage unsubdued, to strive under the banner of the gospel in the noble army of martyrs for a higher inheritance, which, unlike earthly honors, fadeth not away.

Among the earliest and chief colonists of Portarlington were Henri Robert D'Ully, Vicomte de Laval, his wife Magdeleine de Schelandre, Vicomtesse de Laval, and their family. This nobleman claimed descent from Henri Quatre; and when the storm of persecution which desolated France overtook him, he was residing on his estates at his chateau of Gourlencour, in Picardie, in honour and independence. The engraving which accompanies the present article is taken from a drawing of the Chateau, in the possession of Mrs. Willis of Portarlington, great grand-daughter of the Vicomte: it represents the handsome and picturesque residence of a French nobleman in all its national features, as it existed in the 17th century. From this residence he was hurried away in August, 1688, and cast into the dungeons of Verneuil. The cruelty of dispersing families, then too common, and confining the different members in separate prisons, was deeply inflicted on the circle of this nobleman. The Vicomtesse was shut up in the prison of Sedan, while her eldest son, a mere youth, who had been placed under the care of a kind aunt who admirably fulfilled her trust, was incarcerated in the dungeons of Laon, from which he was not liberated until March, 1705, having been separated at least ten years from his parents, who were settled in Portarlington so early as 1695. Immediately after his liberation by order of the Intendant, he addressed a most affectionate letter to his father, dated "Fontaine, 4 March, 1705," assuring both parents of his love "quoique cependant j'en ay été privée dès ma plus tendre jeunesse, la nature pourtant m'a assez fait concevoir la douleur que les enfans recoivent d'être auprès d'un père et d'une mère aussi bon et aussi charitable que vous l'êtes envers mes chères frères et soeurs." This kind father and mother had a large family of sons and daughters, two of whom were born in the prisons of France. Of the former no less than five were in the army in Queen Anne's reign, and these afflicted parents, in addition to the calamities entailed on them as the common lot of the noble refugees, (and these seem to have been in their case many and excessive,) had yet to endure the deeper and more grievous affliction of losing on the field of battle three of their youthful and gallant sons.
          "Thou canst not name one tender tie
          But here dissolved its reliques lie!
          And now behold the mourner's veil
          Shrouds her thin form and visage pale:
          Or see, how manlier grief suppress'd
          Is labouring in a father's breast."

The following letter was written to his sister by Louis Fontaine, a younger son of the Vicomte deLaval, called "Fontaine" from his father's estate of that name in Picardy. Three of his sons were present in the action referred to, in which one was killed:--
"May 26, 1709.         .
"Living at Mademoiselle De Grange's, at Dinan in Bretagne.
"My dear Sister, -- Since I saw you last I have endured great hardships. Having sailed for two days after our embarkation at Cork, on the third day we encountered a large man-of-war with 50 guns and a mortar, and although we had but 36 cannons we fought the French for some time, until we lost a considerable number of men, and among the killed was my poor brother Joseph: he was shot with a cannon ball, and poor Mons. De Beltem with a great many more besides. And when the French boarded us, they took from us all we had, and brought us into their own ship, and put the officers and us into a large room where we lay on deck for three or four nights before we came to land. They disembarked us at Brest, where we remained two days; and while we were there Captain Nicolan gave Davido and me an English half-crown, and bid us to be as economical as possible, as he had only two for himself and his son, and we were allowed by the King only fivepence a day. They then sent us from Brest to Dinan, which is forty leagues distant; we performed most of the journey on foot; every league is three long miles. We were five days and a half on the journey, and David and I have walked 21 miles in a day. Had it not been for some gentlemen that were with us, we should never have been able to make the journey, for our officer was not with us, and did not know we were gone until after our departure. When we arrived at Dinan they put us into the castle, and there we lay on the ground on straw. Then next day they allowed us to go into the town, where they gave us a lodging for fourpence a night, and agreed to dress our food. Excuse me to my father and mother, for I was unwilling to inform them of this bad news, and pray, dear sister, give my brother's and my duty to my father and mother, and assure them that we are both well, and wish to be with them; and give our regards to my sisters, and to all who enquire for us, whom it would be too long to name.
          "Your loving brother till death,
                    "LOUIS FONTAINE."

Among several interesting relics yet remaining in the possession of the lady already referred to as the descendant of the Vicomte, is a long and interesting address from that nobleman to his children whose escape had been effected, dated "De Guize, le 2 Avril, 1689," being then imprisoned there. In the commencement he tells them his letter will inform them of his miserable condition; he alludes to "the wretched imprisonment" of their cousins De Lussi in a convent at Soissons. The captive father then proceeds affectionately to address his youthful family, in a strain of morality and evincing that comprehensive knowledge of Scripture and readiness in controversy by which the refugees of the gentilitial classes were so remarkably distinguished; the fruits of the superior education acquired at the excellent schools established in such numbers by the Huguenots at La Rochelle and elsewhere throughout France, and the revival of which imparted such academic fame to their future settlements, and signally distinguished in this respect the town of Portarlington. This letter of the Vicomte also shows that his mind was deeply imbued with a spirit truly Christian. Passing from this the writer proceeds thus to describe to his children the prison-life of their parents, the trying scenes they had passed through, and the miseries they had experienced, the most distressing of which appears to have been the barbarous and unmanly cruelty of holding the Vicomtesse a prisoner on two interesting occasions. He then proceeds as follows:--
"My dear children, as I spoke to you at the commencement of this letter of my captivity, I told you that it continued still with great inconveniences, really insupportable, to the extent that I had lost all hope of ever seeing you again, of which my persecutors wished to convince me, unless I made you return, assuring me that this was the only means to restore me to liberty; but God was merciful to me (notwithstanding the torments they inflicted on me) to enable me to refuse them a condition so cruel and prejudicial to your eternal salvation. You were too happy in leaving such a sink of vice that I should consent by a cowardice unworthy of the name and profession of a Christian, and of a Christian enlightened by the divine mercy through the Holy Gospel, to plunge you into it again. You know that I was arrested by the police of Soissons, the 17th of the month of August, and conducted into the prisons of Verneuil, and this was for being accused, as was formerly St. Paul, for the hope of Israel; that is to say, for holding the name of God in the purity and the simplicity that it pleased him to reveal to us in his word, a crime which they esteem at present in France the most fearful, and that they visit with punishment the most severe; this was the reason that I was so strictly guarded in a place most disagreeable and inconvenient, and in which I was nearly smothered by different kinds of animals, and where there was not even room to arrange a bed. I was not there long before I fell ill; it was there that I beheld myself abandoned by all the world; I heard from my friends, for it was not permitted to them to see me: but those who presented themselves for the purpose of annoying me had all license for doing so, and of such people there were only too many to be found. Even your poor mother saw me but rarely, and with the greatest difficulty, which obliged her, though very inconvenient from the approach of her accouchement, to make a journey to Soissons, to try and obtain from our Intendant the favour to be allowed to take care of me in my illness, and to afford me some kind of liberty, fearing that I could not survive any length of time in so miserable a place, and even offering herself to remain in prison in my place for some time; but they were inexorable to her prayers, and she returned without having obtained anything. You can imagine what was her sorrow and grief: however, the good God who always paternally chastises his children, and who never strikes them with one hand that he does not raise them up with the other, bestowed on me the strength and vigour to vanquish that illness notwithstanding the hardships I had to bear. Thus, at the end of 12 days I found myself a little better, which made her resolve to take a secret journey into her country, to receive some arrears that her father-in-law owed us, the term of payment being past; and this is what has been partly the cause of all my sufferings, and that we have so long deferred following you: for as he wished for nothing so much as that some obstacle should present itself to prevent him from paying this money, he judged the authority which I had given to your mother to receive that sum, because it had been drawn up in the prison, was not sufficient, and that a man in the situation in which I was, could not legally negotiate or authorise it; which obliged her thus to make a useless journey; and, to fill the measure of her misfortunes, she found on her return that they had transferred me from the prisons of Verneuil to those of Guise, They thought it was not yet bad enough there. To effect this the police of Laon had orders to come and remove me on the 27th of Sept., and to conduct me to Guise. I was not quite recovered from illness; however, I had to travel, and they tied me with many cords on a horse. The officer who commanded the escort, an upright man, and who had formerly conducted me to the prison of Sedan, for the same cause of my religion, observed that he was touched with my condition, and assured me that they only transferred me that I might be better; but I well experienced to the contrary. He excused himself for the cruel and inhuman manner in which they treated me, making me understand how express his orders were, and to what extent he was forced to obey them; and as to me he esteemed me too happy in suffering for the profession of the truth. All the population of the town came out into the streets to see me; it was not that they had not seen me many times in a similar condition, but not tied and bound with cords, as I now was. I was visited by many melancholy thoughts during the journey, but never had anything so much afflicted me as on arriving at Guise to see a mob excited against me (who could do me no evil because they were prevented) and heaping on me a thousand atrocious insults. I remembered that the Saviour of the world replied not to such outrages, and I had the honour to imitate him in that respect; nevertheless this heart, little regenerated, was with difficulty prevented from showing its resentment. How often did I ardently ask of God to support me patiently under this insult; and then the words of the prophet David, in Psalm 69, came to my mind, where he says, -- "For they persecute him whom thou has smitten; and they talk, to the grief of those whom thou hast wounded." This passage of Scripture for a long time occupied my thoughts, finding that it exactly suited my case. They lodged me in the most frightful part of the tower, so far removed from the business of the world that I neither saw nor heard any thing but the gaoler, who came a moment each day to see what I was doing. I was two days and two nights without knowing if I was dead or alive, and consequently without dreaming of taking any nourishment: so much was I penetrated with grief and agony, and so extraordinary was my depression, that I could not even address God, nor invoke him but by interrupted and unconnected prayers; the end of the 70th Psalm was continually on my lips, saying with the author -- "But I am poor and needy; make haste to me, Oh God! Thou art my help, my deliverer; Oh Lord! make no tarrying." Reflecting upon these words I pictured to myself, that my trials were similar to those of the Prophet when he pronounced them, which gave me Borne consolation; but when I reflected that instead of lodging me better than when at Verneuil -- as the officer who conducted me made me hope -- on the contrary, they treated me with such rigour and inhumanity, it came into my head that they wished to make me serve as an example in the province, aud the image of death continually presented itself before me, which made me exclaim with the same Prophet, as in the 77th Psalm. It was from what I said in that hour that God came to my assistance, or I should have died.
It was then I knew my weakness, and how little I was disposed to be a martyr, and on this subject I earnestly implored divine assistance to aid me, entreating that He would be pleased to accord me strength and courage to do nothing unworthy of the profession of a reformed Christian, of which I had the honour to experience the light; but God had not reserved for me a part so glorious as to seal His truth with my blood; of which I became aware in seven or eight days after, by the arrival of the Intendant at Guise, who I knew was favourable to me. However, your mother, the day after her return to Verneuil, set out again to see me, and God willed that her journey was so apropos that she only preceded the Intendant two or three hours, during which she could only see me for a moment, notwithstanding any intercession she could make for that purpose; and even then only in the presence of a serjeant and four soldiers of the garrison, who attended her like her shadow. She had a number of particulars to relate to me respecting the journey she had just made in her country, but it was impossible for her to impart them to me, and I could draw nothing from her except sighs and tears, which she poured forth in abundance; after which her escort dragged her away against her will, for the poor creature would have taken it as a great favour if they had detained her as a prisoner along with myself. I was affected by her visit much more deeply than I had been hitherto, and I should have wished very much not to have seen her; yet, when the Intendant arrived, she besought him with so much determination, that he was compelled to yield to her importunity; so much so that he not only permitted her to see me, but even to remain with me, and that too in a place a little less dreadful than that in which I had been, which they made me leave at once: but I believe that this change, so unexpected and so agreeable for me that I regarded it as an interposition of heaven, was rather the effect of necessity than the result of any kind disposition they might have felt towards me. I seemed to have entered another world when I found myself in her society, and out of that detestable place. All my unhappiness now was for my poor wife, who every moment expected her accouchement; she would willingly have been a captive for my sake, courageously despising all the inconveniencies which she would meet with in a place where she would have nothing but solitude; this was one great cause of sorrow -- although this was not the first time that by divine permission she was placed in a similar position, only more inconvenient: in fact, you know that two years ago her accouchement took place in the prison of Sedan, having dragged her from her bed, (which from illness she had not left for six months) to bring her there; by the goodness of God she has again, at the end of three weeks, notwithstanding all these miseries and calamities, brought into the world a fine boy, by which means the number of your brothers is again augmented. However, after being in prison seven months, they thought themselves obliged to bring forward my trial, and for that purpose, on the last of January, the police of Soissons brought me to the prison of Laon, to which place the Intendant arranged that the witnesses with the President should go; and with all these forms it was on the 27th of March that, having confronted me with the witnesses, who had not much to say against me, and having been kept before the bar for more than two hours, to render an account of my faith and of that of which I was accused, and particularly your flight, which they positively wished me to remedy by your return, although I had always borne witness that it was not in my power to do so; they showed an order of council which commanded the Intendant to treat me with all the rigour of the law. -- God gave me grace to reply to all their questions according to the promptings of my conscience, and boldly to confess the truth that we had at one time so feebly defended: but it has now pleased Him to show His strength in my weakness, for in myself and in my flesh I recognise nothing but weakness. However, it was ordered, in expiation of my pretended crimes, that I was still to remain in prison for six months; a judgment which they considered very favourable, and which I attribute to prayer to God on that and on ordinary occasions. I am much indebted to Mons. and Madlle de Lussi who were most kind to me, and whom I shall remember with gratitude all my life. At present I haw mow license for writing than ever. May it please God to preserve us to the end of this persecution to shield us from the storm and the tempest, and to conduct us by His goodness to the haven of salvation."

Situated near Laon, in Picardy, the seat of the Viscomte De Laval.

The Huguenot token represented in the engraving (full size) was brought from France by the Viscomte De Laval; it is of hard wood, and has much the size and appearance of a chessman The mouldings of the head, however, are so delicately delineated by the lathe, as to give, when opposed to the light, an accurate contour of the classic features of Louis XIV. Tokens of this kind were used by the Protestants of France as symbols of recognition; whence probably those commemorative of Napoleon I. had their origin.


[m] A Portarlington refugee.

[n] From Portarlington. He served throughout the wars of Queen Anne. He married in France the daughter of Colonel Paravicini, by whom he had seven sons and three daughters, but fearing a lettre de cachet would place the latter in a convent, he sent them to their relatives in Portarlington.

[o] This brother was only in his fourteenth year.

The above article is reproduced from the Ulster Journal of Archaeology, vol. 3, 1855.

Thursday 6 February 2014

The French Settlers in Ireland - No 6 (pt 2)

The Huguenot Colony at Portarlington, in the Queen's County.


by Sir Erasmus D. Borrowes, Bart.

-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --


The first volume of the register still wears the coarse and primitive brown paper cover, in which it was originally invested by its foreign guardians, 161 years since; one side bears the following inscription in large capitals:-- LIVR...DES. BAPT...MARIAG...ET, ENTEREMEN...1694. The first page is thus written:--
"Registre contenant Les Baptesmes, Les Mariages, and Les Sep......des Protestans francois de L'Eglise Réformée qui s'assemble en la Ville de Portarlington dans le comteé de La Reine En Vertu de L'acte passé au Parlement tenu dans La Ville de Dublin Le 5me d'Octobre, 1692, en La 4me Annee du Regne de leurs Majestés Le Roy Guillaume et La Reine Marie, en La presence de Son Excellence Monseigneur Henry Vicomte Sidney, Viceroy et Gouverneur Général d'Irlande."

Then follows in a more modern writing:--
"Pasteurs de l'Eglise Francoise de Portarlington.
Depuis 1694 jusquen 1696 Gillet.eBellaquier. Calvinistes
5 Octre 1696 ... ... ... ... ... " " "
1 Decre 1696 ... ... ... ... ... 1638 Gillet. " " "
15 May 1698 ... ... ... ... ... 1698 Darassus. Ducasse. " " "
26 Juin 1698 ... ... ... ... ... 1702 Daillon.f " " "
3 Octre 1702 ... ... ... ... ... 1729 Bonneval.g Anglicans
14 Augt 1729 ... ... ... ... ... 1739 Desvories. " " "
16 Febre 1739-40 ... ... ... ... ... 1767 Calliard.d " " "
2 Sep 1767 ... ... ... ... ... 1743 Des Voceux " " "
Jan. 1793 ... ... ... ... ... 1817 Vignoles " " "
1817 ... ... ... ... ... Charles Vignoles.

From 1803 to 1817, a Swiss clergyman named Rebillet was employed as assistant chaplain, when the performance of the service in the French language terminated. -- The first page is thus inscribed.
"Nostre ayde soit au nom de Dieu qui a fait le Ciel et la Terre. -- Amen."

Among the records on this page is the following:--
"Mariage du Jeudy 20me Septembre 1694. Cejourd'huy après La troisième proclamation publique qui s'est faite pendant trois dimanches consecutifs à l'heure de V assemblée sans qu'il y ait eu nulle opposition: A été benit pubquement, et à La face de toute L'Eglise, Le mariage du Sieur Pierre Le Maignan Maréchal des Logis au Regiment de Galway, fitz de feu Pierre Le Maignan Vivant Marchand drappier demeurant a Condé sur...pays de Normandie, et Demoiselle Isabeau Fournier ses Pere et Mere d'une part, Avec Demoiselle Jeanne Jaqueau fille du Sieur Isaac Jaqueau officier de Marine, demeurant en L'Isle d'Oléron Province de Saintonge en France, et Demoiselle Judith Véron ses Père et Mère d'autre part; Etant signé Le present acte avec leurs amys ainsy que nous ministre et anciens du Consistoire. J. Grillet, pastr. Pr. Maignan. Jeanne Jaqueau. Charles De Bures Bethencourt, ancien, Proisy D'Eppe, ancien. D'Aunis. De Choisy."

The following is a registry of burial:--
"Du Dimanche 2me Decembre 1694 Sepulture -- Le Vendredy 20 Novenbre, 1694, sur les deux ou trois heures du matin, est morte en La foy du Seigneur, et dans L'Esperance de la glorieuse resurrection dans La Ville de Portarlington au Comté de La Reine, Dame Anne Miffaut, femme de Charles De Bures Ecuyer Sieur De Bethencourt, Capitaine pensionnaire de leur Majestés: dont Fame éstant allée à Dieu le corps a été enterré, Le premier du present mois dans Le cimetière de Lea, paroisse du dit Lieu en plein jour à trois heures après midy, suivant La discipline etLa forme ancienne et ordinaire de nos Eglises de France; ce que le dit Sieur De Bethencourt a signé avec quelques uns des assistans a le dit enterrement, et nous anciens du Consistoire, Les Jours &c. susdits. Charles De Bures Bethencourt, ancien. Proisy D'Eppe, ancien.. Michel De Bures Sailly. Du Petit Bose. J. Baucher, ancien. Claude Guiot, ancien."

The next shows the form of registering baptism:--
"Du Dimanche 31 Mars, 1695, Baptesme. Cejourd'huy sur Les deux heures du matin sont nés un fitz et une fille à Isaac Serre et à Jeanne Ponset sa femme, qui ont eté présentés ce même Jour au Baptesme, Scavoir, le fitz par Messire David de Proisy, chevalier, Seigneur Chastelain, D'Eppe, parrain; et par Dame Anne de Vivefoy du Petit Bosc; et La fille par Mr Caesar De Choisy, et Dame Angélique Boisbelland D'Aunis; et nom leur a ésté imposé, Sçavoir, David au fitz, et Jeanne à la fille, par nous, J. Gillet, ministre Isaac Serre. Proisy D'Eppe. De Choisy, Anne de Vivefoy Petit Bosc, Maraine. Angélique, B. D'Aunis, Maraine."
"Du Dimanche 6me Jour d'Octobre, 1695, Baptesme, Le Vendredy 4me Jour d'Octobre, même mois et an, Sur Les 9 heures du soir est né un fitz à Messire Daniel Le Grand, Chevalier, Seigneur du Petit Bosc, Lieutenant Colonel, et à Dame Anne de Vivefoy son Epouse qui a été cejourd huy présenté au Baptesme par Charles De Bures, Escuyer, Seigr de Bethencourt, Capitaine, Parrain, Et par Demoiselle Gabrielle D'Ully fille de Mr Le Vicomte de Laval, représentant Demoiselle Catherine Charlotte de La Goupillère, fille de feu Monsieur Le Baron de Dolton, Maraine; et nom Luy a été impose Charles Gaspar par nous, J. Gillet, ministre," &c.

The next page shows the baptism of Daniel David De Laval son of
"Messire Henry Robert D'Ully, chevalier, Seigneur Viconte De Laval, et Dame Magdeleine de Schelandre sa femme."

Then follows the baptism of the son of "Le noble Homme Louys Le Blanc,i Sieur de Perce, Capitaine pensionné, et Dame Marie Pistard son Epouse." Louys Le Blanc is the only name in the register styled "noble homme," which is the same as the term "gentleman" with us. He is thus described evidently to distinguish him from another family which bore the same name, viz., "Claude Le Blanc, boucher a Portarlinton," 1699. Both families suffered severe persecution. In noticing this subject, though painful it may be to raise the veil and disclose the wounds of the gallant and enduring soldiers of the Cross; nevertheless respect, love, justice to their undying memory, and to their glorious and exalted example, demand the portraiture of some of those sad scenes which furnish the unerring test of the indomitable spirit, unshaken courage, and steadfast faith with which they braved the extremes of cruelty, indignity, and insult, in maintaining the dictates of their conscience and the purity of their creed. -- In ecclesiastical dignity and eloquence as a preacher the name of Jacques Abbadie claims precedence.j Having been driven from France a few years previous to the Revocation, Abbadie, with many others of his distinguished countrymen, availed himself of the encouragement and welcome extended to the Refugees at the court of Brandenburg by the Elector, Frederick William: descended from a noble family in Béarn, he acquired at an early age a remarkable knowledge of theology, and took a doctor's degree when in his eighteenth year. Count de Beauveau, master of the horse, having induced him to reside at Berlin, he became attached to the rising church in that city, and soon enjoyed the favourable opinion of the Elector, whose panegyric eloquently written by Abadie became known at the Courts of Europe, and aided the fame and the success of Frederick William. About this time his "Treatise on the Truth of the Christian Religion" added considerably to the literary celebrity of this eminent divine, and excited the admiration of the great and learned sçavans of the day, including Bayle, Rabutin, Madame De Sevigné, &c., who were eloquent in praise of its author. This work was dedicated to the Mark-Grave of Brandenburg. It is to be found in Marsh's library, with the following note on its fly leaf -- "Don de l'auteur. Bouhereau." Soon after the publication of this master-piece, Abbadie brought out his "Treatise on the Divinity of Jesus Christ," and "Idea of a good Pastor," &c. After the death of the great Elector, Marshal Schomberg, who had conceived the warmest friendship for Abbadie on the occasion of his visit to Berlin, induced him to accompany him to Ireland, and he was present when the great commander fell at the Boyne, He had exercised his able pen in the service of King William, and was appointed Dean of Killaloe in 1699. The deanery of St. Patrick's would have been given to him had not a want of facility in the English language incapacitated him for a dignity so elevated and active. He continued Dean of Killaloe until 1727. He had also been minister to the Savoy church in London. Abbadie resided occasionally in Portarlington, naturally preferring the refined society of his countrymen, civil, military, and ecclesiastical, all more or less distinguished, to the solitude and seclusion inseparable in that day from the residence of a French Refugee on the remote banks of Lough Dearg and the wilds of Clare.

In the Portarlington register he is styled "doyen de Cilalou ;" he died in 1727.

J. Gillet, the first minister of the French church in Portarlington, had previously served the chapel De la Tremblade, and the church in Crispin St., London, and was married in the latter, in 1701, to Jeanne Mestre. -- In reference to the two families of Le Blanc, it appears that Theodore Le Blanc was minister of La Rochelle, and afterwards chaplain to the Queen Dowager of Denmark, and was probably of the same stock as Louis Le Blanc, "noble homme;" he with other clergymen was declared attainted, and convicted, for having received into their church Marie Gautier, a "relapse," and Renée de la Serre, contrary to the decrees of the Council of State. These names occur constantly in the Portarlington registries. Le Blanc and his brother clergymen were condemned to be led by the executioner with ropes round their necks, naked, except their shirts, to the entrance of the Roman Catholic Cathedral of La Rochelle; holding in their hands flaming torches of two pounds, and, being on their knees, were to declare that it was through their mistake of the decree of the king that they received the said Gautier, that they repented, and asked pardon of God, the King, and Justice. They were to be banished for ever from the kingdom, and their property to be confiscated.k

From a list of some of the persecuted in France we extract the following names, which constantly occur in the Portarlington registries. They were principally the victims of the relentless Marillac, the scourge of Saintonge and Poitou.
"Jeanne Micheau, veuve, ageé de 72 ans. Jean Micheau. Jean Broussard....Pillot. Marie Guillon. Noirt et environs. Caillard de St Maixant. Lusignan.....Canche. Les freres, Micheau, fermiers. En Saintonge et Aunix par L'Intendant De Meux, Micheaus, Les Villeneaux, Jeanne Gautier prisounier à La Rochelle, Mercier de. La veuve la Brousse et sa fille, indignitez qui n'expriment point, De Largere et sa femme, gentils homm, prisons affreuses. Angoumois,....... Champlorier, volé par paisan habille en dragon. Anjou et environs, Pierre Gautier et sa femme; la même fumez et brulez. Poitou, Jacques Guérin, laboureur, pendu. Louis Billonard, medecin. Guyenne, Dame De St Germain de Lus, sa maison démolie, et les bois conpez. La Dame De Virazel succombée. Brassard, ministre à Montauban pris par les Algériens. Cevennes, Manuel De la Salle, pendu. Metz. Chevenix, conseiller. La Dlle Du Clos. Normandie,........ Hamon, Marchand à Rouen et sa famille. Bretagne, Bel Grient et sa femme. Bergerac, La Dlle La Serre. De Virazel, conseiller à Bourd. Montauban,...... Beauchamp. Do La Dlle......... De Belcastel, deux doigts coupez. Do De Castelfrance, gentilhomme. Brie, David De Proisi d'Epe. Do Vicomte De Laval. Guyenne,....... David, médecin à Monflanguin. Do De Labat, habitant de Clairac, meurt dans les fatigues des logemens. Montauban,....... La Grange, gentilhomme, cachez quinze mois. Provence, Dlles Gautier. Do Dlle Freau. Do Nicholas Porcher, sa maison abbattue. Saintonge, Pièrre Gautier, Do Isaac Guérin Sieur De la Loge, mort en prison. Perche,....... Le Fevre, marchant. Bourgogne, Le Fevre, avocat. Isaac Le Fevre, prisonnier.

Of the Portarlington families who suffered as slaves on board the gallies were the following members:--
"Sur La Hardie, Antoine Mercier, Luzernois. Pierre Boyer. Sur La Belle, Jean Billonard. Sur La Galante, Jean Durand. Sur La Porte, Pierre Allix. Sur La Grande. François Sabattier. Sur La Victoire, Pierre Blanc. Sur L'Ambitieuse, Jacques Blanc. Sur L'Heureuse, Pierre Blanc." In other gallies not named were Pierre, David, and Jean DeSerres, of Montauban, Anthoine Durand, Pierre and David Mercier, and Pierre Nicolas.

Among some half dozen families, remnants of the French, still living in Portarlington, are the "Blongs;" the rapidly fading memory of the gallant refugees, and the oblivion of everything French, having entailed on the original name this corrupted form: the Christian names however, of the gallant martyrs of the galley being transmitted from one generation to another with most religious accuracy. With similar precision the trade, said to be most hereditary, that of butcher, has been taught by father to son in the same town for at least 155 years; for the name of "Claude Blanc, boucher" is found in the register in 1699. The following bill, furnished to a lady of rank, the widow of a French field ofiicer, shows the continuation of the trade; and the price of meat in 1743:--
"Feb. 23, 21 pound of beef, 3s. 6d.; a Qr. of Lawm, 1s. 7½d.; a koofs head, 10d; a...5d; 7 pound of beef, 10½d; 3 pound of beef, 6d; 21 pound of beef, 3s. 6d.; 8 pound of beef, 1s; a brest of wail, 1s. 3d. Peter Blong."

The receipt of Peter Blong, and his signature, in orthography and penmanship are quite of a superior order to the bill, which bears the date of 28th April, 1743. A descendant of this family now flourishes successfully in the town as butcher, salesmaster, &c.; and we may here mention the singular fact, that our own foreign ancestors in the maternal line, and ourselves for a period of 150 years to the present day, have purchased our rounds and sirloins from the well-stored stalls of these hereditary French Knights of the Cleaver.

The Micheaus, who are described above as "fermiers," were tenants of the French estates of the Robillard family, Seigneurs De Champagné, &c.; we find their names on the rentroll of the Chevalier De Champagné: from their frequent recurrence, they are thus distinguished by a sobriquet as customary also among Irish tenantry:-- "Jean Micheau, dit gros Jean; Jean Micheau, fils de Sanson," &c. It is a remarkable coincidence, that they again held land from the Champagnés, in the neighbourhood of Portarlington, and were appointed Portreeves of the borough, where their old French landlords were for many years sovereigns. "Louise Micheau, wife of Jean Couturier, of Mauze, was violently insulted (outragée) by the police who lodged in her house at discretion; they broke sundry articles, and took her husband prisoner to Rochfort, with Cujau and Tavers, for not having changed."l A member of the family of Micheau is now sexton of the ci-devant the French Church in Portarlington. -- A name of martial renown now presents itself, of especial interest at the present moment, and full of hope of adding another laurel wreath to the glory of our gallant French allies; need we name the name of "Pellissier!" As in the present day, so of old, we find it connected with war, and the individual who bore it held military posts of importance. The register records the marriage, in 1698, of "Abel Pelissier cy-devant mareschal des logis, et Aide maior du Regt de Galuuai, fils d'Abel Pelissier et d'Anne Nicolas de la ville de Castres, prouince de Languedoc d'une part, et de Marie de Choisy, fille de Caesar de Choisy et de feu Marie Gilbert de Chef-boutonne prouince de Poitou d'autre part" &c., signed "Pellissier. Marie de Choisy. De Choisy. Benjamin De Daillon, ministre. Du Petit Bosc, ancien; Laval, ancien; Proisy D'Eppe. ancien; Billonard, ancien." -- Benjamin De Daillon, "Escuyer, Sieur de la Levrie," who succeeded to the Portarlington church in 1698, had become distinguished in France, prior to his emigration. He had been minister of the Church of La Rochefoucauld, in Augoumois. He states in his remonstrance on the sentence subsequently passed on him, that the Curé and Carmelites of that town had long formed the design to interrupt the exercise of the reformed religion in Daillon's church, and made many efforts to accomplish their purpose; that they pretended, on the ground of some ancient titles which they had falsified, that the spot on which his church was built belonged to them, that the clock erected in his church was taken from their place of worship, that he had placed it above the cross, and that the building was altogether too near to them. The Sieur de la Levrie rebuts the charges, but is nevertheless sentenced by "le Lieutenant criminel" to discontinue his ministerial office, to be banished from the province of Angoumois for nine years, the consistory of La Rochefoucauld to be suppressed, the exercise of the reformed religion to be interdicted for ever in the said town, the church to be demolished within one month by its own members, which if not done within that time, it is to be pulled down at their own expense, and the said Daillon and elders of the church to be fined in the sum of 3,000 livres. In April 1685, Daillon was a prisoner in the Conciergerie of Paris. In 168S he was minister of the church de la Patente, in Spitalfields, London; and in the same year he published at Amsterdam, in 2 vols., a work entitled "Examen du principal prétexte de l'oppression des réformés en France." -- In our list of "persecutez," the name of François Sabatier merits special notice. In 1695, before Portarlington had sufficient extent to accommodate the refugees, John Sabatier, with many others of his countrymen resided at Lea, one mile from the new town, the ancient village and its venerable castle still contending for the mastery, and welcoming with the temporary shelter of their declining days these interesting emigrants from a foreign land. Now all there is ruin and desolation. --
      "Along thy glades a solitary guest,
      The hollow-sounding bittern builds its nest,
      Amidst thy desert walks the lapwing flies,
      And tires their echoes with unvaried cries;
      Sunk are thy bowels in shapeless ruin all,
      And the long grass o'ertops the mouldering wall."

To be continued...

[e] Gillet; probably one of the same family as is mentioned in the account of the French settlement at Lisburn, in this Journal, vol. 2, p. 174.

[f] Daillon was one of the noble family of Du Lude. An individual of the name, Benjamin de Daillon, was pastor of the French Church at Catterlough (Carlow) in Ireland, and died in 1709. [Haag.]

[g] Bonneval was the name of a Protestant branch of the noble family of D'Agoult, which lost the estates of Pinet and Chastelard, in Provence, in consequence of having embraced the reformed faith. -- [Ibid.]

[h] Gaspar de Caillard was French pastor in Dublin, and published sermons there in 1728. -- [Ibid.]

[i] Tostein Le Blanc bore the standard of the Conqueror at the battle of Hastings.

[j] Abbadie was born at Nay, a small town of Béarn, and after studying at Puylaurens, and Saumur, took his degree at the academy of Sedan. It is stated in his biography that the indigence of his parents was such that the expense of his education was defrayed by the chief churchmen of the province. The last years of his life were passed in England and Holland. -- [Haag.]

[k] Decree of the Court of Parliament of Paris, 18th January, 1685.

[l] MS. Memoires d'Aunix, Sept. 1681.

The above article is reproduced from the Ulster Journal of Archaeology, vol. 3, 1855.