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Outstanding Huguenots of the French Santee
(St. James Santee)
Anne Baker Leland Bridges and Roy Williams III
An original publication, 1997
     The date of the original settlement on the French Santee at Jamestown cannot be determined but land grants were made in the area in 1685.12  Arnaud Bruneau Ecuyer Sieur de la Chabociere 13 received a grant for three thousand acres in recognition of services rendered to the Lord Proprietors and for recognized merits. 14  There is a record of a deed of contract executed in London February 25, 1686, between Arnold Bruneau, seigneur of Chabossiere, and Paul Bruneau, lord of Ruedoux (Rivedoux) 15 of the one part and Josias Marylan, lord of La Forcet of the other part, for building of a mill in Carolina; the said 
mill to be erected on the land of either party without prejudice to the interest of the other. 16
     In 1688 Arnaud Bruneau bought an additional 5,300 acres for cash and became one of the early setters on the Santee near Jamestown at Wanthee in 1690 with his son, Paul Bruneau Sieur de Rivedoux, and his grandson, Henry Bruneau. The Bruneaus were people of property and social standing driven from their rich estates near Poitiers. They were apparently able to take some of their wealth with them. 17
    Another noble family of similar interest is that of the de Chastaigner Seigneurs de Cramahe 18 and de Lisle. Their prominence among the Huguenot refugees in Dublin is indicated by nearly fifty entries in the nonconformist registers there. Three brothers, Cramahe, De L'Isle, and Des Roches made plans to escape from France when the Edict of Nantes was revoked. The first two were successful but the third, Des Roches, was caught, flogged, cast into prison, and banished after twenty-seven months of confinement.
     An elder brother, Hector Francois Chastaigner, who attempted to escape later, was captured, thrown into prison, and subjected to maltreatment. Eventually he made his way to Ireland where his name was on a list of applications for naturalization in 1698. Two other brothers were more fortunate. Henri Auguste Sieur de Cramahe and Alexander Thesee, Sieur de Lisle, 19 went to Santee in South Carolina. 20 They were the sons of Roche Chastaigner, ecuyer, and members of a distinguished family which traced its lineage back to the eleventh century Three members of the family had served as mayor of La Rochelle.
     In western France the family had very early been identified with the Protestant cause. Philippe Chastaigner, abbess of a nunnen, in Poitou, had corresponded with Calvin in 1549 about abandoning the cloister and embracing the evangelical faith. This she eventually did, taking with her eight nuns, leaving only one in the convent. 21 In South Carolina the Chastaigner brothers continued to add to the family's accolades, quickly taking conspicuous positions in provincial business and political affairs. Alexander (d. 1707),22 who came to Carolina in 1685 with his wife, Elizabeth Buretel, was a member of the Assembly by 1693. Henri Auguste was on the Governor's Council by the same year. 23
     Another family of the minor nobility who came to Santee in the flight-from Normandy was that of Isaac Le Grand, ecuyer, native of Caen, son of Jean Le Grand. His wife was Elizabeth Le Grand, daughter of Jean and Judith Dieu of Caen in Normandy Isaac, their son, was born in Caen and Elizabeth, their daughter, in Carolina. 24  A family whose saga is almost unequaled by any other immigrant family is that of the Mazycks. Isaac Mazyck's father, Paul Mazyck or Paul de Mazyck, was a native of the Bishopric of Liege. He had married Elizabeth Van Vick (Vanewick), or Van Wyck, of Flanders. They were wealthy Walloons who had moved to Maestricht in the Netherlands about 1685 and afterwards to St. Martin, on the Isle of
Re, opposite La Rochelle, about 1685.
     Isaac Mazyck fled to Amsterdam from France, where as a wealthy merchant he succeeded in transferring fifteen hundred pounds sterling. From Amsterdam he sailed to England with his funds intact. Mazyck sailed from London to Charleston with an interest in a cargo of one thousand pounds. This cargo of merchandise became the basis of his great fortune. 25
     His transactions involved trade with Barbadoes, Portugal, Madeira, the West Indies, and North America. 26  When Isaac Mazyck landed in South Carolina in 1686, he found the province a world of interested possibilities for his bold mercantile genius.
     Among his extensive land holdings was Mazyck Borough, which makes up the northeastern part of the Charleston peninsula above Calhoun Street and which he acquired in 1696, and what was later called Middlesex south of Mazyck Borough, which he acquired in 1706 and sold in 1720 to Thomas Gadsden. 27 Isaac Mazyck also acquired in 1712 the Mazyck Lands west of Legare Street. 28  He was said to be the largest landowner in the province. 29
     The Mazyck residence at 68 Broad Street burned in the fire of 1796,30 which swept from Lodge Alley to Meeting Street. By that time the property was in the hands of the Ravenel family, 31 having been passed through inheritance by the immigrant Isaac Mazyck and his son Paul in 1749 to his daughter, Mrs. Daniel Ravenel, in whose line it continues today. This property at 68 Broad Street has probably been owned continuously by the same family line longer than any other residential tract in South Carolina.
     Though wealthy; Isaac Mazyck took no active part in politics but was a staunch adherent to the Reformed Church of France. This position, the opposite of that of Peter Manigault, probably excluded him from matters of prominence in local affairs. His will disposed of £44,800 and more than four thousand acres of land in addition to much personal property. Mazyck left £100 to the Huguenot Church in Charleston, the interest of which he directed to be paid annually for the support of its Calvinistic minister forever. 32  In his family Bible, under the date 1685, is this record: God gave me the blessing of coming out of France, and of escaping the cruel persecution carried on there against the Protestants: And to express my thanksgiving for so great a blessing, I promise, please God, to observe the anniversary of that by a fast. 33
     Among the members of the "noblesse" of Aunis and Poitou who continued faithful to the Huguenot cause in the days of increasing persecution were several who would later flee to Carolina.
     Gabriel Manigault, the father of Pierre and Gabriel, who settled on the Santee River, was the descendant of one of the earliest converts in Aunis to Protestantism. One of the first baptisms performed by a Protestant minister in La Rochelle was that of Sara, daughter of Jean Manigault and Louise de Foix, his wife. Jean Manigault was one of the elders of the infant church and his dwelling was one of the secret meeting places. 34
     Pierre Manigault (d. December 1729), a native of La Rochelle, left France with his brother Gabriel after the Edict of Nantes was revoked. The two brothers went to London where they remained for several years before going to Carolina in 1695. When they arrived they seem to have had some funds from earnings in England and from the sale of land in France.
     On June 22, 1696, Pierre received a warrant for one hundred acres while Gabriel earlier received a warrant for land for the arrival of himself and a negro named Sambo on June 28,1695.35  The Manigault brothers first settled on the Santee River but apparently found planting uncongenial to their city tastes and the climate unhealthy. Like some other new émigrés from the cities and towns of France who did not take to tilling the fertile soil, the Manigaults later moved to Charleston. 36 In 1699 Pierre married Judith Giton Royer.
     In Charleston Gabriel became a builder while Pierre set himself up as a victualler. Gabriel, however, never married and died about ten years after he had come to Charleston in a fall from a scaffold. Pierre branched out to build a small distillery to make brandy He also owned a cooperage. Having become familiar in France with these enterprises, he quickly built up a good business and before long doubled his capacity with another distillery to make brandy.
     Capitalizing on his earnings, Pierre built large storehouses along the harbor and stores in the town's retail district. 37  He was among the first of the refugees to prosper and amass a considerable fortune. At his death Pierre, who had identified himself with the English and anglicized his name to Peter, left his two heirs, a son Gabriel and a daughter, Mrs. Judith Banbury, several storehouses and warehouses, two distilleries, a cooperage, and a city lot and dwelling, as well as slaves, and ready cash. 38
     At no great distance from La Rochelle, and within Aunis, there were smaller places inhabited by families who also fled to Carolina. Eleven miles to the northeast was Marans. Completely surrounded by water, or by salt marshes, it formed a picturesque island, approached only from the southeast by a causeway. 39  It was the birth place of Jean and Philippe Gendron, the sons of David Gendron and Catherine Gendron. 40  Philippe Gendron, though he went to Carolina an unnaturalized alien, was popular enough to be listed together with two other Huguenots, John A. Motte and Rene Ravenel, 41 among the commissioners of the Church Act of 1706.
     Gendron's wealth lay in fine stock, profits from which he reinvested in local commercial ventures. Like many of the Huguenots, he was an inveterate money lender. Interestingly his will disposed of no land, but bequeathed ten thousand pounds to his near relatives.  Similar to Peter Manigault, he left ten pounds to the poor of the French Church of Santee and the same amount to the poor of the French Church in Charleston, a custom peculiar, it appears, to the first generation. Manigault, who seems to have always realized that he needed to be on the good side of the English, left ten pounds to the English Church at Charleston. Gendron, not as politic, left his bequest on condition that the church remain true to the Reformed faith. 42
     Daniel Huger, a merchant, his wife, Marguerite Perdriau, and two children left the Isle of Re in 1682. They were naturalized in England March 8, 1682. Daniel Huger was born at Loudun in Poitou, the son of John Huger and Anne Rassin. Their daughter Marguerite was born at La Rochelle; their other children, Daniel and Madeleine, were born in Carolina after 1696. 43
     Marennes, twenty miles south of La Rochelle, in Saintonge, is a  town surrounded by salt marshes which in former times so isolated the place and a neighboring town that they were known as the islands. The "temple" at Marennes was still standing in 1684 when all other Huguenot places of worship in the neighborhood had been destroyed. The order for its destruction was soon given and with the repression a number of Hugaenot inhabitants slipped away Among them were Jean Boisseau, 44 whose wealthy widow, Marie Postell, in Carolina married the minister James Gignilliat, who left her penniless. Nearby at La Tremblade lived Pierre Couillandeau, who would buy lots at Jamestown on the Santee, and Suzanne DuBose, wife of Isaac DuBose, 45 daughter of Pierre and Susan Couillandeau. 46
     The seaport town of La Chaume in Poitou, inhabited chielly by hardy sailors whom the dragoons 47 found it difficult to convert, was the birthplace of Benjamin Marion, ancestor of Francis Marion, the Swamp Fox. Benjamin Marion was the son of Jean Marion and Perinne Boutignon. His wife was Judith Baluet and their children, Ester, Gabriel, and Benjamin, were born in Carolina.''8 Also in Poitou at the village of Cherveux was the birth place of Pierre Gaillard,49 the
son of Pierre Gaillard and Jacquette Jolain. From Sepvret came Pierre Guerri, 50 the son of Jacques and d'Anne Guerri.
     The provnce of Touraine, adjoining Poitou on the east, contained a large Protestant population. Tours, its principal town, was nearly ruined by the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Several families found their way to America. One of them was headed by Noe Royer, 51  the son of Sebastien Royer and Marie Rendon. Madeleine Saulnier was his wife and it was their son Noe who married Judith Giton.
     From Paris itself Elie Horry, 52 whose father had been martyred for his religion, escaped to Holland before going to London and then to Carolina. Horry, born at Charenton, was the son of Jean Horry and Madela.ine Du Frene. In the colony he was married in 1704 by the Rev Pierre Robert to Marguerite Huger, a daughter of the refugee Daniel Huger of South Santee. Their children were Daniel, Elias, John, Peter, Margaret, Henrietta, and Madeline. 53
     The village of Saint Severe, in the province of Berri, was the birthplace of Isaac Porcher de Richebourg. Isaac, a physician, had taken his degree at the University of Paris. He fled after the Revocation to England with his wife, Claude Cherigny, a native of  Touraine.
     The city of Lyons had at one time a large Protestant population, but during the period of severe religious persecution nearly the whole of the population left the kingdom. Among the fugitlves was Francois L'Egare, whose eldest son Solomon became the founder of the family in Carolina. According to family legend, Solomon was away from home at college when his parents made their escape. A trusted servant brought word to Solomon to disguise himself as a peasant and make his way to Geneva.
     This he did, eventually joining his family in Bristol, England, where they remained until they came to Massachusetts in 1691.
Francis L'Egare, jeweler, his wife Anne, and their sons Francis Solomon, Daniel, James, and Stephen John were naturalized in
England on March 8, 1682. 54 Solomon later moved to Charleston, where he lived until an advanced age. His son Daruel's planting interests were primarily in Christ Church Parish. Daniel's sons, Joseph and Isaac, were planters in St. James Santee Parish. It is said Solomon Legare would never permit French to be spoken in his family so determined was he to break the ties with the horrors of France. 55
     In October, 1685, a land warrant was issued to Joachim Gaillard "Jamestown Precinct" for six hundred acres. Although a grant that size cannot be found in the records, three grants of two hundred acres each, adjacent to one another on the Santee River, were recorded January 18, 1688. They were made out to Jean Francois de Gignilliat On May 5, 1690, two hundred acres each were conveyed to Joachim Gaillard and his sons Bartholomew and John. 56
     By 1690 about eighty French families had settled from Mazyck's Ferry on the South Santee, two miles below Wambaw Creek, 57 in what became St. James Santee Parish by the Acts of 1706 58 and 1708, almost to Lenud's Ferry, 59 and then back from the river into what became the Parish of St. Denis, called Orange Quarter. 60
     Here the refugees slashed plantations out of the wilderness to cultivate the vine, olive, and silk worm and to produce naval stores. James Boyd, for example, planted a large vineyard on the Santee before 1694, in which year the proprietors granted him three thousand acres for his vintage efforts. 61
     Although the culture of the vine did not take permanent hold as a cash crop, as a subsistence crop the grape arbor became a standard feature on the grandest plantations and the lowliest farms. The survival of those arbors into modern times can most probably be traced to these earliest attempts at cultivation.
     By 1696 fifty-nine of these immigrant French families who were to make their money not with the vine, olive oil, and silk but with the eventual successful "triumvirate of rice, indigo and cotton," 62 had requested naturalization. 63

 The First Church

     The Huguenot Church on the French Santee was one of the earliest of the Reformed and Calvinistic polity and doctrine established in Carolina. The church may have been standing before the St. James Santee, Plantation Parish, town was laid out. In all probability it accurred almost as soon the Huguenots settled in the area. The church, erected of wood on a brick foundation, was less than fifty yards from the river, and after 1695 it became the center of Jamestown. 64
"St. James Parish-Plantation Parish"
"St. James Parish-Plantation Parish"
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