Cambridgeshire - Huguenots and Walloons


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History

Overview

First we must identify a Walloon. A Walloon is a member of a French speaking people of Celtic descent inhabiting southern and southeastern Belgium and adjacent regions of France. Walloon is also the French dialect of these people.

Huguenot was the name given in the 16th and 17th centuries to a French Protestant who followed the beliefs of Calvin. By 1561 there were 2,000 Calvinist churches in France and the Huguenots had become a political faction that seemed to threaten the state. Persecution followed and brought numbers to England as refugees during Tudor times, and the Crypt of Cantebury Cathedral was assigned to them as a place of worship in 1550. Those who remained during the French Wars of Religion fought eight civil wars against the Catholic establishment and triumphed when, by the Edict of Nantes in 1598, Henry IV gave them liberty of worship and a 'state within a state'. Their numbers grew, especially among merchants and skilled artisans, until they were again persecuted. The centre of their resistance in 1627 was La Rochelle, which the Richlieu government had to besiege for over a year before capturing it. In 1685 the Edict was revoked; many thousands of Huguenots fled to England, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and Brandenburg, some settling as far away as North America and the Cape of Good Hope. All these places were to benefit from their skill in craftmanship and trade, particularly as silk-weavers and silversmiths, the taking an important part in the development of the manufacture of silk, velvet and linen.

The Drainage People

Those Huguenots who came into East Anglia may have referred to themselves as Calvinists rather than Huguenots. To understand the history of these settlers we need to go back 60 years, when Calais fell to the French and out of English hands. The skilled drainage people were living at Balinguen and Guisnes, and in the area which is still full of canals and marshy areas. They were working for the English, draining the marshes from Dunkirk to the area below Calais. The Duc de Lorraine and his brother, the Archbishop of Lorraine, invited the Spanish Inquistition into northern France the first week after Calais' surrender and they immediately sentenced the French/Walloon protestants working for the English to permanent exile; the condemned were allowed to take their personal possessions, their household goods and moveable. Most of these people fled northwards into the Netherlands, Walcheren having been the most northerly part of Flanders at one time, many of the people considered themselves Flemish first and French. The ministers of the Calvinist churches in northern France, especially to the area from Calais north to the border, were sent from Walcheren where the controlling church is thought to have been although this may have been transferred to Leiden later.

The skilled drainage people travelled to where they could find work just as the other artisans in the manufacture of silk, velvet and linen, drainage was an art form. They travelled to London, Norwich, Kent, and other parts of England. The settlement that had been in the English Pale behind Calais remained together, ended up in Middelburg Walcheren. They went, as a body, to Sandtoft, they sailed up the Humber and docked just below Doncaster. Cornelius Vermuyden had had a chapel built for them at Sandtoft, after acquiring permission and installed a little company town which was later burned out and the church destroyed - they then moved to Thorney and environs.

In his book, SMILES states: "…a scheme was set afoot for reclaim of drowned lands in Hatfield Chase and the Great Level of the Fens and a large number of labourers assembled under Cornelius Vermuyden to execute necessary works. They were, however, a very different class of men from the modern ‘navvies’ - for wherever they went, they formed themselves into congregations, erected churches, and appointed ministers to conduct their worship. Upward of 200 Flemish families settled on land reclaimed by them in the Isle of Axholme; the ships which brought the immigrants up the Humber to their new home being facetiously hailed as "the navy of Tarshish"….In short, wherever the refugees settled, they acted as so many missionaries of skilled work, exhibiting the best practical examples of diligence, industry, and thrift and teaching the English people in the most effective manner the beginnings of those various industrial arts in which they have since acquired so much distinction and wealth."

Some had not settled at Sandtoft, but lived in the area apparentlyand worshipped at parishes in Belton and other Hatfield locations but it is unclear whether this was before or after Sandtoft was destroyed.

Thorney Settlement

There is a marble memorial tablet on the north wall of Thorney Abbey which is an inscription to Ezekiel Danois of Compiegne in France, the first minister of the Huguenot colony which fled to England to avoid persecution and settled in Thorney. For 21 years he was at Thorney Abbey and he was buried there, aged 54, in 1674. Huguenot pastors continued to minister at Thorney until 1715. French Drove and French farm in the extreme north of the parish recall the settlement in the 17th century of French and Walloon refugees, who helped in the reclamation of the fen areas and long remained an important element in Thorney. The refugees were first admitted on condition of being allowed to sell at any market, and of being exempt from service overseas for 40 years, and from subsidies and fifteenths. They held services in the church under their own pastors, who kept a separate register 1654 to 1727 which has been printed as an appendix to Warner's 'History of Thorney Abbey', in fact the restoration of the abbey was in the main for the special benefit of these foreign settlers.

The settlement was fairly large averaging 29 births a year 1654-63, 37.9 in 1664-73, and 26 in 1764-83. After this date numbers began to diminish, partly due to intermarriage and absorption in the general surrounding community. In the 10 years 1714-23 there was an average of only 7.9 births and this dropped to 7 in the last 4 years to 1727. Cole, writing in 1744, mentions that French was still spoken by the descendants of the refugees in private conversation, and a court roll of 1748 shows 7 French names among the 28 jurors. Gardner's Directory of Cambridgeshire 1851 shows a few names, such as Barron, Bellamy, Charity, and Provost, which may be of French origin, but these have died out now.

The settlement had two further influxes. The first was caused by Queen Elizabeth who sent the Artois Walloons from Southampton to Thorney. The Atois colony, which held the earliest church register still extant in the British Isles, had been decimated twice or three times by the plague and with them the Sea Beggars who settled in Southampton. In 1583 plague hit the settlement, according to Samuel SMILES in his book entitled THE HUGUENOTS, THEIR SETTLEMENTS, CHURCHES, and INDUSTRIES IN ENGLAND AND IRELAND, and again in 1604. M. Courand the pastor died after registering with his own hand the deaths of a great part of his flock due to the plague.

The Sea Beggars were harrying the Spanish fleet after Philip ordered his troops in the Netherlands to seize English ships and property about 1568. The Spanish fleet was standing off Southampton and the Walloons were 'pirating' the Spanish vessels. This did not please Elizabeth, who wanted her own 'pirates' to seize the Spanish vessels, which they did, and she kept all the gold that was to go to the Netherlands to pay the Spanish troops. To succeed she moved the Southampton Walloon settlement, which had been greatly decimated by the plague, up to Thorney, far enough inland where they could not badger the Spanish or the royal court.

The second influx was caused by the French Church in London in about 1685. They moved a group of Huguenots from the south up into the Thorney area to "take part in that congregation" to 'bolster' the population. The real reason was that the French Church had been having trouble with the Walloons at Thorney and Norwich for a long time. The Walloons spoke and read a different language, not a patois or dialect or French but their own language, Romand, which is a romance language very like French but said to be much older, and they did not want pastors coming out from London to preach in French so they arranged for their pastors to come from the Netherlands. The French Church wanted to control the Walloons; there was a major conflict with the Walloons at Norwich which can be read about in the introduction to Vol. 1 of the Quarto Series of the Huguenot Society of London (now Great Britain and Ireland). Supposition has it that there were about 1,000 people in the congregation at Thorney at one time but this could mean the area as some of them worshipped in the Church of England parish at Thorney and some were in Crowland, Whittlesey, Eye, and other places within the area.

Huguenot History - http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Acres/4040/hist-hug.htm


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Information

The "Huguenot Surnames Index" commenced by Australian Family Tree Connections magazine in June 1995 has Huguenot entries from people living all over the world. Entries are free and are first published in the magazine (require a postal address) and are then published on AFTC Online with submitter's email address.

These are church records from Sandtoft, Lincs. where a number of French Huguenot families worshipped and the French chapel at Sandtoft.

Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie Online, The Hague, Netherlands has a Walloon database cardfile of millions of Walloon names this may never appear on the internet but they do answer queries if you give them time.


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Names

Here is the list of surnames, alphabetically, from the Sandtoft records :

ACFAIR

AGER

ALBERT

AMORY

AMPLE

ASOLOM

BALE

BANRUEDT/BANDERETE/BAURUDET

BAREEL

BEAMARM

BEAUMONT

BEAUSSART

BEHAR(R)ELL(E)

BENITLAND

BENROCEDT

BERCHETT

BERNARD

BLANCAR/BLANCART

BLUIQUE

BONDVEL

BRESME

BRONGNE/BRUGNE/BRUNGUE

BRYNYECAIDOY

CANSTER

CARDOY

CARDUE

CASTLET

CHATELET

CHAVATT(E)/CHAUATTE

CIGNY

CLAIS

CONY

COQUELAR

CORDAIN

CUGNYDEBACY

DEBURGE

DECHATLET

DECOUP

DEKERHUEL

DELAGAYE

DELAHAYE

DELANNOIS

DELAN(N)OY

DELEPIERE

DELAPORTE

DELAPRIX

DELESPISER

DELTUR

DERAEDT

DER(R)ICK/DERIQUE

DERATT

(DE)ROUBAY

DESBIENS

DESCAMPS/DISCAMPE/DISCAMPS

DESCAY

DESCON

DESQUIRE

DEVERLIER

DEWIT

DEZEMBR/DEZONMBER

DUBATTELET

DUBLIQ

DUBOIS

DU(F)FOSSE

DUMERLYE

DUMOULIN

DUQUENNE

DUVERTIER

DUVERLIEEGAR(D)

ELBIETFERRE

FERZ

FLAHAU

FONTAIN

FRANK

FROUCHART

GEUBAU

GLOVER

GOUGLER

GREBAULT

GUISELINHANCAR/HANQUAR

HARDICQ

HARLAY

HARNEW/HERNU

HENEGRAVE

HERSSINIMPSON

ISERBY

JACOB

JAQUEMINE

JORDAIN

LAMBER

LEBRAND

LECONTE

LECOQ

LEENARDS

LEESPIER

LEFLOUR

LEGRAIN(E)

LEGRAND

LEHAIR(E)

LEHOUG

LEHOUQ

LELIEU/LELEU/LELEW/LELUE

LENOIR

LEN(N)OY

LERMIT(TE)

LEROUX

LEROY/LEROY

LESPIERE/LESPIRRE

LETALLE

LEVANELEY

LIENNAR

LOMBARD

LONGUESPEE

MAREQUILLY

MASSENGARBE

MATTS

MERQUEHIER

MERQUILIDE

MESINAN

MESSMAN

MITCHELL

MORFIN

MOR(R)ILLIONOESLEYPENSOY/
PINSFOY/PINSSOY

PINCHEON

PORREE

PRIAM/PRIEM/PRIMEQUOYRAMMERY

RANEY

RENARD

RENAULT

ROUB(L)AYSALMON

SCANF(L)AIR

SCAVAT

SMA(S)QUE

STARKEY

STERPIN

SWARTETA(F)FIN

TAYLOR

TEURQOIN/TURQUINE

THERY

TISSEN/TUYSSEN/
TUSSEN(S)/TYSSEN

TREFFET

VANDEBEC

VANHOUGE

VANHOUQ

VANPOUILLE

VANPLUE

VANVALKENBURGH

VENAIN/VEN(N)IN

WATERLOO

WATSON

WERQUIN

   

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Contacts Points

The Huguenot Society's library in
University College,
Gower Street,
London,
WC1E 6BT

Tel: 0171-380-7094
hhslib@ix.netcom.com

The Huguenot and Walloon Research Association,

The Chairman and Hon. Editor
Jean Tsushima

'Malmaison'

Church Street

Great Bedwyn,
Wilts
SN8 3PE

Thorney Heritage Museum

The Tankyard

Thorney

Cambs

PE6 0QE

Secretary:

Dorothy Husband

144 Wisbech Road

Thorney, CAM PE6 0SE

email address: DHusb@aol.com

Huguenot Society of London

Hon. Librarian: C.F.A. Marmoy, FLA

4b Kingcroft Road

Harpenden

Herts AL5 1EJ

Society of Genealogists have a large Huguenot collection but if you are unable to go in person, there are fees for lookups, etc.

Dutch and Flemish Centre,
St. Mary the Less,
Queen Street,
Norwich
NR2 4SQ

Tel: 01603 622130

Norfolk Association of Stangers

To all those interested in Huguenots and Walloons in Norfolk there is the "Norfolk Association of Strangers" which meets regularly. The Secretary of the Norfolk Association e-mail address is hugo@care4free.net . Membership is open to all descendants of Dutch, Flemish, Walloon or Huguenot settlers and its aims are the interchange of knowledge relating to their history and the effect of such a settlement on the religious, economic and social life of Norfolk.


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Reading Material

A FAMILY FROM FLANDERS by John Peters 1985 which involves a family genealogy search he carried out concerning his ancestors from northern France who settled in Kent.

HUGUENOT INFLUENCE IN SCOTLAND by Fleming, John Arnold (1871-) 1953

BASIC FACTS ABOUT ENGLISH NONCONFORMITY FOR FAMILY HISTORIANS by Gandey, Michael

FRENCH SPEAKING REFORMED COMMUNITY AND THEIR CHURCH IN SOUTHAMPTON 1567-1620 by Andrew Spicer - Huguenot Society of Great Britain and Ireland

THE HUGUENOTS; THEIR SETTLEMENTS, CHURCHES AND INDUSTRIES IN ENGLAND AND IRELAND. WITH AN APPENDIX RELATING TO THE HUGUENOTS OF AMERICA. Smiles, Samuel 1972

HISTORY OF THE WALLOON AND HUGUENOT CHURCH AT CANTERBURY Francis W. Cross 1898 H.S.O.S. vol XV [Huguenot Society of ???]

LISTS OF FOREIGN PROTESTANTS AND ALIENS RESIDENT IN ENGLAND 1618-1688 W. Durant Cooper, editor - Camden Society, London 1862

THE STORY OF THE WALLOONS At Home in Lands of Exile and In America by William Elliot Griffis 1923

THE PURITAN IN HOLLAND, ENGLAND AND AMERICA by Campbell

Note: Vol I of the Quarto series of Proceedings of the Huguenot Society of Great Britain and Ireland has a lot of information in its introduction relating to the Walloons and their Church at Norwich that describes the whole situation in France and the Netherlands regarding the Walloons. Also the introduction by Henry Peet in volume 17-20? of the Proceedings Quarto series REGISTER OF BAPTISMS OF THE FRENCH PROTESTANT REFUGEES SETTLED AT THORNEY CAMBRIDGESHIRE 1654-1727 is very interesting as this group did not go to England as religious refugees per se but were commissioned by Cornelius Vermuyden to leave the Netherlands where they had been living for approximately 60 years since the Spanish Inquisition was invited into northern France after the fall of Calais - a large group of them had been living around Guisnes/Guines and were involved in the projects of draining the marshes in the Pale behind Calais and also before the meeting on the Field of the Cloth of Gold, etc. The date of the first banishments by the Inquisition was 1568, about a week after Calais was won back by the French from the English.

REGISTERS OF THE FRENCH NON-CONFORMIST CHURCHES OF LUCY LANE AND PETER STREET, DUBLIN BOARD WITH HISTORY OF THE WALLOON AND HUGUENOT CHURCH AT CANTERBURY by F.W. Cross - Thomas P. Le Fanu, editor 1901

HISTORY OF THE FRENCH PROTESTANT REFUGEES by M. Charles Weiss translated from the French by Henry Wm Herbert 2 vols, New York 1854

'GENEALOGICAL MEMORANDA RELATING TO HUGUENOT FAMILY OF DE VENTIER' - in Miscellanea Genealogica et Heraldica [Joseph Jackson Howard, editor] published by Michell and Hughes, London 1888 this contains extracts from the Family Bible as well as extracts from the Thorney, Brothertoft, Swineshead, Sutterton and Horbling Parish registers

"THE FIRST THIRTY YEARS OF THE FOREIGN SETTLEMENT IN AXHOLME 1626-1656"

Vol. II? pages 302 or 316 or 330 by G.H. Overend - Quarto series, Huguenot Society of London Publications 1889

SOUTH YORKSHIRE by Hunter 1828 gives list of names of foreign settlers "from the register of the Chapel of Sandtoft, which was carefully kept from 1641 to 1681 and is still in existence or lately was so." - this register has disappeared and there is only a partial register extant of the congregation of Walloons who first went to England with Vermuyden - eventually settling in Thorney and environs.

STRANGERS IN THE FENS - HUGUENOT/WALLOON COLONIES AT THORNEY, PARSON'S DROVE AND GUYHIM WITH SOME ADHERENTS 1893 1992 by Trevor Bevis - this is basically Peet introduction rewritten - Bevis is alive and well in Cambridgeshire and has written several other books on Walloons.

LE BANNESSIMENT DES PROTESTANTS DE LILLE APRES LA PAIX D'ARRAS (1570-1582) by Alain Lottin [an important historian] in Revue du Nord, tome LXVI no. 261/262 Avril-Septembre 1984

Pre-1841 CENSUSES AND POPULATION LISTINGS IN THE BRITISH ISLES by Colin R.

Chapman, published by Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore Maryland [believe they are on the web] "This is a chronological account of censuses and enumeration in the British Isles from 1086-1841..."There is also an index with over 80 national taxes and other allied listings (hair powder tax, two unmarried daughters exemptions, Turkish prisoner of war fund 1670, Bills of Mortality - due to the plague - rolls instituted 1665. Appendix 1 Censuses containing names of individuals covers British counties from Aberdeenshire to Yorkshire from 163 to 1837. Appendix II Decennial census returns from 1801-37 - lists, by year, returns from the same counties as found in the first appendix. There is a section of notes and references and a tax index." - downloaded info from CompuServe's genealogy forum some years ago.

 

THE NORWICH DUTCH AND WALLOON STRANGERS BOOK OF ORDERS 1564-1643 by D. L. RICHWOOD 1990 [No publisher listed]

THE WALLOON COMMUNITY IN CANTERBURY IN THE LATE 16TH AND EARLY 17TH CENTURIES by Margaret D. Fisher 1913

THE FLEMISH AND WALLOON COMMUNITIES AT SANDWICH DURING THE REIGN OF ELIZABETH I 1561-1603 by Marcel F. Backhouse

THE WALLOON COMMUNITY IN SOUTHAMPTON FROM 1567 by Andrew Spicer 1997

THE HUGUENOTS, THEIR SETTLEMENTS, CHURCHES, AND INDUSTRIES IN ENGLAND AND IRELAND by Samuel Smiles

FAMILES PROTESTANTS DE BRETAGNE by Jean Luc Tulot

HISTOIRE GENERALE DU PROTESTANTISME, 3 vols. 1961-4 by Emile G. Leonard translation: A HISTORY OF PROTESTANTISM, vol 1 1962,vol 2 - 1967

THE DE FORESTS AND THE WALLOON FOUNDING OF NEW AMSTERDAM by Green 1916 and 1924

MEMOIRS OF A HUGUENOT FAMILY by James FONTAINE, first publ 1838

GENEALOGY OF THE DE COU FAMILY...FROM LEUREN DE COU OF THE SANDTOFT COLONY, by Heldgird 1910

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES OF HUGUENOT SOLOMON LEGARE AND HIS FAMILY by Elizabeth C.K. Fludd 1866

LE BANNESSIMENT DES PROTESTANTS DE LILLE APRE LA PAIX D'ARRAS (1570-1582) by Alain Lottin, Revue du Nord,tome LXVI no. 261/262 Avri-Sep 1984

THE HUGUENOT STRUGGLE FOR RECOGNITION by M.M. Sutherland 1980

THE HUGUENOTS - by A.G. Grant 1969

HUGUENOTS AND PAPISTS, by David Buisserat, 1972

NOTES GENEALOGIQUES SUR FAMILLES D'ARTOIS ET DE FLANDRE 2 vols. in 1, Paul Denis du Peage, 1951

THE DAYS OF THE UPRIGHT; A HISTORY OF THE HUGUENOTS by O.I.A. Roche, New York 1965

LE PROTESTANT FRANCAIS by Emile G. Leonard 1955, Press Universitaires de France

L'EPOPEE HUGUENOTE, by Raoul Stephan, La Colombe, Paris: 1945

THE POLITICAL THEORY OF THE HUGUENOTS OF THE DISPERSION WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO THE THOUGHT AND INFLUENCE OF PIERRE JURIEU, by Guy Howard Dodge, Columbia University 1947

HISTORY OF THE FRENCH PROTESTANT REFUGEES FROM THE REVOCATION OF THE EDICT OF NANTES TO THE PRESENT TIME by Charles Weiss, Prof. History at Lycee Buonaparte - transl. with the assistance by the author by Frederick Hardman, publ 1854 London

THE HUGUENOTS IN FRANCE AFTER THE REVOCATION OF THE EDICT OF NANTES by Samuel Smiles

THE ROLL OF THE HUGUENOTS by Charlotte de la Tremouille

THE PURITAN IN HOLLAND, ENGLAND AND AMERICA by Campbell

PROTESTANT EXILES FROM FRANCE by Agnew

THE MASSACRE OF SAINT BARTHOLOMEW by Nogueres


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Mailing Lists

HUGUENOTS-WALLOONS-EUROPE-L-request@rootsweb.com - full listing

HUGUENOTS-WALLOONS-EUROPE-D-request@rootsweb.com - digest version


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Websites

American Plantations and Colonies - Virginia and the Walloons and French 1621

Anthropology Explorer - Walloons

Charlemagne, wallonia and Europe

English Ordenance 1626-1643

Flemish Society of Genealogy

French Protestant Church of London

Gen. Quest - Walloons and French, 1621

Genealogy Forum Huguenot Resources Center

Genealogy Forum: Huguenot Reading List

Genealogy Forum: Huguenot Resource Center or

Huguenot Historical Society in New Paltz, NY

Huguenot Religion

Huguenots and Walloons at Rootsweb

Index de Wallonia

John Calvin (World Civilizations)

Le Poulet Gauche - Life in 16th Century France

Lucyin Mahin Walloon Language Pages

Maiden Names - South Holland

Michael Duke's Huguenot Story

Olive Tree - Index to Huguenots & Walloons

Paul Beharrell's Sandtoft Colony Website

Paul Beharrell's Sandtoft Colony Website - or alternatively

Prof. Stanier's Sandtoft webpage

Religion, Wars of

Thorney Heritage Museum - will need looking for

Thorney, Cambridgeshire

Wallonia Patronymes, Listes des Patronymes continus dans Wallonia


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Other Sites with Links and Related Information

Allen County Public Library, Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA

Ancestry.com

ArchivesOnDemand.com

Australia - civil registrations

BBC Genealogy Support Documents

Blank Genealogy Forms

British Library

Calais

Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints [LDS]

Cyndi's List

DiaLinks - French Links

Familia - Family History Resources UK and Ireland

France, Northern

Go.com - French databases

History

Library Catalogues - Midlands Universities

Library of Congress - USA

Maps - Expedia

Maps - Old maps of Great Britain

Maps - Ordenance Survey

Maps - UK Multimap

New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, MA, USA

Rootsweb

Rootsweb Archives

Royal Commission - Historical MS Commission

Search Engine - Genealogy

Timeline

Timeline - Create your own personal

UK National Register of Archives: Commission's World Wide Web page

UK Public Record Office

UK Public Record Office - Leaflets

USA National Archives and Records Administration for ships' records, etc.

WorldConnect


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Last Updated on: 10 August 2000
For comments about this webpage, please email Martin Edwards.
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