La Ferrière, Vingtaine des Pigneaux, St Saviour Saturday, Apr 4 2015 

La Ferrière

Some years ago I looked rather unsuccessfully into the history of this property as a Ralph Thompstone had lived here with his Aunt, Ralph had been at school at Victoria College with my Uncle Richard Jouault DFC 1920-1942

Ralph Thompstone circa 1930

Ralph Thompstone circa 1930

I recently had the chance to look around the building and became a bit more intrigued about its past so the following is a work in progress:

La Ferrière consists of a large three storey Victorian house and adjoining converted farm buildings there are a number of datestones to be seen mostly on the farm house:

Damaged Keystone from former arch, TME 1661 Thomas Mourant married Elizabeth Ahier St Saviour 24-1-1637/8

1732 above door east side, northern end.

Above the main garden gate – IMR.MF.1755. Jean Mourant m. Marie Falle (St S) 10.1.1720

I M 1835 on northern end of old farm building and in a similar style 1841 on west facing farm building.

Godfray Map of 1849

Godfray Map of 1849

On the Godfray map shown above between the O and the G we find R (Robert) Brown 1792-? born in St Helier, who was involved in a lot of property transactions but as yet I not aware what his trade or business was. In 1851 he handed over his affairs to his brother Daniel 1802-?  a baker, and we do in fact find Daniel living at the property which was then called “Hillsborough House” in 1852 Daniels sells it to Jean Le Gallais son of Nicolas of St Helier a silversmith and it is presumed this is when the name “La Ferrière” which means a smith in French originated. two weeks after the sale Daniel purchases a property of Jeanne Wimbée 1805-1870 wife of Julien Jouault 1895-1879 my great great granparents, as Julien was a French national he was not allowed to have property in his name, although later he did become a British National and returned to France!

It is said that Jean Le Gallais had La Ferriere built but I do wonder if it was actually Brown who did so. It would appear that Le Gallais did not live here till post 1861 as we find the following on the census: Edgar Bayley 54 England, late Captain 12th Regiment, wife Elizabeth K Bayley 47, daughters: Georgina 19, Fredrica 17, Charlotte 15, son Boné 14.
Farm has Thomas Baudains 39 widower, son Thomas 10, daughters Jane 9, Ann 7.
The building certainly looks knew when Le Gallais is pictured here with his son Theodore 1853-1903 who went on to become receiver general, and his nephew Henri Le Bailly, his daughters Rebecca and Naoemi, Rebbecca married a Canadian the Reverend Josiais Jesse Roy 1849-1931,  Rebecca died in the 1880’s and her sister then went on to marry her brother in law. Jean died in 1872 and although I think the family continued to own La Ferrière the daughters remained in Canada, and Theodore lived in St Helier.

Jean Le Gallais & family

Jean Le Gallais & family

On the 1881 census we find Army Major Henry Charles Spearman born Baden, Germany 1836 died Battersea 1891, and his family.  The Farm has Francis C Mourant age 33 born St Helier, and family a farmer of 24 acres.
On the 1891 census John Claudius Raven 59 born Jersey a retired Army Officer, wife Isabella (McPherson) 49 N.S.W. Australia & children born Victoria, Australia. 1901 living at “Beverley Lodge” Colomberie
Farm: Francis C Mourant 44 and wife Jane 49

On the 1901 census Thomas Payn 54, retired Magistrate-Barrister wife Jeanne Payn 61
Farm: F C Mourant 53 and wife Eliza 59

On the 1911 census Marie Warin 41 married, French, Aline Gaudefroy 67 mother, widow.
Walter Le Gros (farmer) 40 born Clairfield, St Saviour, wife Jane E Le Gros 34 born Les Fontaines, St Martin, daughters Irene 7, and Marjorie 4.
1923 Testament of Francis Gaudin La Ferriere, St Saviour
1923 Kellys Handbook: Thompstone, Sydney Wilson C.M.G. (1906)

There is also mention of a Charles Jones of La Ferrière in that his daughter Catherine Elizabeth 1830-? married Naval officer Charles Burney and there son Sir Cecil Burney 1858-1929 became Admiral of the Fleet.

La Ferrière circa 1880 by Badoux

Le Gallais family photographs

Jersey Silversmiths

Trinity Great War Memorial Friday, Aug 15 2014 

Trinity Memorial

Trinity Great War Memorial, I have gathered information from the Channel Islands and the Great War and web sites, but I was unable to find details of some of them. Inside the church is an updated Memorial with some additions

Sergeant Josué Renouf Bisson
3rd (or Town) Battalion, Royal Militia of the Island of Jersey 19/08/1917
Son of Josué Machon Bisson & Charlotte Rachel Le Boutillier Renouf, born 11 Nov 1886 in Ville-a-L’Eveque, Trinity, Jersey Died aged 31 in Rozel, Trinity. Occupation : Ecrivain

Rifleman Charles Garnet Blampied
7th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles, 06/09/1916
Jersey Evening Post of Tuesday 19 September 1916
Roll of Honour. Rifleman C Garnet Blampied, who for 13 years was employed as a compositor at the office of our French contemporary Le Chronique de Jersey and who left with the Jersey contingent, has been killed in action. A brother of the deceased, who had joined the Canadian Overseas Forces was killed some time ago and another brother is at present a prisoner of war in the hands of the enemy.

Private John Blampied
23rd Battalion, Middlesex Regiment
10/10/1916 , buried Wallencourt, Youngest son of Charles & Madge Blampied of 8 Almorah Crescent, St Helier, Jersey. One of two brothers who both fell. Killed in action, aged 17 years.

Private Thomas John Blampied
26th Batallion, Canadian Infantry (New Brunswick Regiment)
18/06/1916 . Son of Charles & Mary Jane Gallichan
One of two brothers who both fell within 3 months. Deceased, aged 22 years.

CSM John James Bull
1st Battalion, Leicestershire Regiment
15/09/1916, Son of Charles and Mary Jane Bull (nee Pougher), of Cosby, Leicester. Husband of Lydia Jane Bull (nee Lempriere), of 51 Great Union Road, Jersey. Served in the South African Campaign. Killed in action aged 35 years.

Lieutenant Frederick (Fred) Max Burger Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment)
14/10/1918, Youngest son of the late George William Charles & Margaret (Maggie) Burger (nee Tobin) of 12 Lempriere Street, St Helier, Jersey. Killed in action, aged 29 years.Commemorated on family memorial in Almorah Cemetery, Trinity Parish Memorial and on memorial in Masonic Temple to Freemasons. 1901 census living at the family run Alnwick Hotel, Trinity.
Private Wilfred De La Haye (served as Delaney).
Canadian Forces 1st Mounted Rifles Saskatchewan Regiment
15/09/1916 . Youngest son of Alfred de la Haye of Haute Croix, Jersey. Killed in action, aged 29 years

Gunner Elias George Dorey
290th Siege Battery. Royal Garrison Artillery, 31/10/1917, Son of John and Elsie Dorey, of Jersey. Killed in action, aged 23 years. Commemorated on St Johns Parish Memorial, and on Sion Methodist Church Sunday School Memorial, Jersey

Private John Philip du Feu
15th Battalion, London Regiment (Prince of Wales Own Civil Service Rifles)
03/08/1917. Second son of Mr and Mrs James du Feu of Rue es Pelles, Trinity, Jersey. Formerly employed by Au Gagne Petit in Jersey and also worked in London. Killed in action, aged 33 years.
Jersey Evening Post of Monday 20 August 1917
Roll of Honour. We record with regret the death which took place in action on 31 July last of Private John Philip du Feu of the London Regiment. The deceased soldier was the son of Mr & Mrs J du Feu of Rue es Pelles, Trinity, and was at one time employed at Au Gagne Petit and of latter years had been manager of a drapery business in London. The gallant soldier was 33 and leaves a widow in London to whom, with the other members of the bereaved family in Jersey, we tender our sincere sympathy.

Cadet John Tourgis du Val
44th Wing, Royal Air Force
25/04/1918. Eldest son of Mr & Mrs John du Val of La Bagatelle, Trinity, Jersey
Jersey Evening Post of Saturday 4 May 1918
Jersey Cadet Killed in Aeroplane Accident. It is with sincere regret we learn that John du Val, a cadet in the Canadian Air Service, eldest son of Mr John du Val the respected temporary postman at Trinity, was killed on 25 April in an aeroplane accident. This young Islander went out to Canada in 1908 and for 5 years was employed by the firm of J Le Grand Paspebiac, he then proceeded to Montreal where by his ability and hard work he won the esteem of all who knew him. In 1917 he passed all the tests at the Whycliffe Training College for Cadets in Toronto and then was sent to Texas to complete his practical training as a pilot. He was expected in England shortly on his way to the Front and was looking forward to a well earned holiday with his parents in his native Isle. The late cadet was in his 25th year. To Mr & Mrs du Val, whose second son is at the Front, and the other members of the family we offer our sincere sympathy. Killed in an aircraft accident, aged 25 years.

Regimental Sergeant Major James Hudson Goldsmith
Staff – Heavy Artillery Brigade, Royal Garrison Artillery
Husband of Lilian Goldsmith of Fair View, Trinity, Jersey, he was born in Alderney
Died of wounds, aged 37 years
Jersey Evening Post of Tuesday 9 April 1918
Roll of Honour. Another well known soldier who was taken prisoner at Kut el Amara has unfortunately died whilst in the hands of the Turks, we refer to Regimental Sergeant Major J H Goldsmith, a former member of the RMIJ Permanent Staff, whose wife and three children reside at Fair View, Trinity. The deceased soldier was attached to the 86th Heavy Battery Royal Artillery and was captured at the close of 1916 and no news had been received from him for a considerable period. His wife has, however, now received the tragic information that he died at Islahgaa in Turkey. The late Regimental Sergeant Major, who was in his 37th year, was a well known athlete and had scores of friends and acquaintances in the Island who will hear the above news with regret and much sympathy will be felt for the widow and children.

Private Alfred (Fred) Charles Guégan
7th Battalion, King’s Shropshire Light Infantry
23/08/1918. Fourth son of Jean Francois Guégan & Marie Francoise Darcel of La Biarderie, Trinity, Jersey. One of two brothers who both fell in 1918. Killed in action, aged 18 years

Private John P Guegan
1st Battalion, Duke of Cornwalls Light Infantry
13/04/1918. Younger son of the late Mr James F Guegan and Mrs Guegan of Melville Cottage, Trinity, Jersey. Killed in action, aged 23 years.
Jersey Evening Post of Tuesday 7 May 1918
Roll of Honour. We record with regret the death which took place in action on 1 April of Private J P Guegan, younger son of Mrs Guegan of Melville Cottage, Trinity. The deceased gallant soldier was 24 and joined up early last year in the Hampshire Regiment, being later transferred to the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry, and had only been transferred from another Front a few days when he met his death. Previous to joining the colours he was employed by his brother-in-law, Mr J Michel of Longueville. Killed in action, aged 18 years.

L. Hamon no details found.

J.E.M. Hervé no details found, possibly Joseph Hervé of St John

W Hervé no details found, possibly brother of above.

Lance Corporal John Francis Kerfant
4th Battalion, Middlesex Regiment
Jersey Evening Post of Monday 21 October 1918
Roll of Honour. We regret to chronicle the fact that Lance Corporal J F Kerfant of the Middlesex Regiment died on 12 October in hospital in France of gun shot wounds in the abdomen. The deceased soldier, who was 27, was born in Trinity and was formerly employed at the Hotel de l’Europe. He joined up about 3 years ago and leaves a mother, who resides at 1 Patriotic Street, to whom we offer our sincere sympathy.

Commemorated on St Thomas’ Roman Catholic Church Memorial
Bombardier Arthur Raymond Laisney
475th Siege Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery
02/12/1917. Only son of Peter Francis and Elizabeth Laisney (nee du Feu), of “L’Abri” Trinity, Jersey. Husband of Maggie May Laisney (nee Carpenter), of 9, Cambridge Gardens, Hastings.
Died of pneumonia at the General Southern Hospital in Portsmouth, aged 25 years.
Private Raymond Le Breton
1st Battalion, Dorsetshire Regiment
1901 census living with family at “La Garenne” Trinity
Jersey Evening Post of Friday 19 April 1918
Roll of Honour. Mr & Mrs Le Breton of 2 Dorset Street this morning received telegraphic information that their eldest son, Private R Le Breton of the Dorset Regiment, had died in hospital at Rouen on Tuesday last of gas shell poisoning. This sad news followed a wire which stated he had been admitted to the above hospital on 16 April dangerously ill and that permission to visit him could not be granted. The above gallant soldier was amongst the first volunteers in 1915 and will be remembered as a highly respected employee of Mr Frederick Baker. He was 23.

Armourer Philip Renouf Le Cornu
Royal Navy. H.M.S. “Malaya” 01/06/1916
Son of Philip Picot Le Cornu & Susan M Le Cornu of Vincent Hall, Trinty, Jersey. Husband of Mary Le Cornu (nee Langlois).
Died of wounds, following the Battle of Jutland on H.M.S. Malaya, aged 37 years.
Jersey Evening Post of Wednesday 7 June 1916
Roll of Honour. We regret to state that yet another Jerseyman, Philip Renouf Le Cornu, made the supreme sacrifice on 31 May. This son of the sea was 38 and was serving on HMS Malaya, he was the eldest son of Mr & Mrs P P Le Cornu of Vincent Hall, Trinity. To the widow (nee Langlois) and the other members of the family we beg to offer our sincere sympathy in their hour of sorrow.
A total of 26 Jerseymen are believed to have lost their lives in the Naval Battle of Jutland on 31 May 1916 and on HMS Hampshire which sank on 6 June 1916 after striking a mine off the Orkneys.

Corporal Walter Charles Le Mercier
12th Field Company, Royal Engineers 21/03/1918
Son of the late Pierre and Elizabeth Le Mercier, of Jersey. Husband of Emily Kate Le Mercier, of Bishop”s Waltham, Hants.
Killed in action, aged 36 years

Henry Augustus Morcel
Ordinary Seaman, Royal Navy. HMS “Catspaw”
Son of Auguste and Emily Morcel, of Les Fougeres, St. John’s, Jersey.
Lost, aged 19
Commonwealth War Graves Commission Record:
She foundered in a storm off Segerstad, Öland (in the Kattegat), with the total loss of her ship’s complement of 3 officers and 11 ratings, all of whom are buried in the same cemetery. The reason for the loss of H.M. Drifter “Catspaw” is not certain, but it was noted later that her steam powered engine was located some distance away from the bulk of the wreck, which led to Admiralty Inquiry speculation that the ship’s engine had probably played a major part in her loss.

Lance Corporal Clarence Durell Nicolle
1st RM Battalion, Royal Naval Division
Commemorated on Halkett Place Primary School Memorial,
St Mark’s Church Memorial,
Old Boys of St Marks Company Boys Brigade Memorial
and memorial in Masonic Temple to Freemasons. Bombardier John Alfred Olivry
23rd Battery, 108th Brigade, Royal Garrison Artillery

Bombardier John Alfred Olivry
23rd Battery, 108th Brigade, Royal Garrison Artillery
Brother of Rifleman Sidney John Olivry
7th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles
09/09/1916. Commemorated on Sion Methodist Church Sunday School Memorial
St John’s Parish Memorial

Private Philip Henry Pallot
1st Battalion, Duke of Cornwalls Light Infantry
07/12/1915, He was born in St Helier circa 1891, and living and working in Cornwall before the war.
Soldat 2nd Class Jean Marie Joseph Reux
74th Territorial Regiment French Infantry
02/06/1916. Born at St Carreuc,1876. Husband to Marie, worked as a farm labourer and resided at Les Hougues Cottage, Trinity, Jersey.

Gunner Peter James Therin
387th Siege Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery
5/11/1917. Son of Peter & Jane Therin of Sunny Cottage, Augres, Trinity, Jersey. Died, aged 19 years.

Private Edwin John De La Haye
19th GHQ Reserve MT Company, Royal Army Service Corps
18/12/1919. Son of John and Margaret De la Haye. Husband of Bertha E. De La Haye, of 15, Birley St., Holden St., Lavender Hill, London. Served in the South African Campaign. Died, aged 32 years. 1891 age 3, born in Grouville and living at “La Raulinerie”, Trinity

Henry Rondel Le Sueur 1872-1921 Monday, Aug 4 2014 

Dr Henry Rondel Le Sueur 1872-1921
Born January 1st 1872 the son of Francis Charles Le Sueur and Esther Elizabeth Rondel of “Fairfield” Rue du Hurel, Trinity.

"Fairfield" Trinity

“Fairfield” Trinity

The following obituary was published in the journal “Nature”
“He attended a private school until 1887, and then for two years was in the laboratory of a Jersey analyst, Mr F.W. Toms. Thence in 1889 he proceeded to University College, London, taking the B.Sc. degree of the University of London (Honours in Chemistry) in 1893 and the D.Sc. degree in 1901.
Dr Le Sueur’s teaching experience was entirely connected to the institution, namely the Medical School of St Thomas Hospital, where he was appointed demonstrator in 1894 and lecturer in 1904, a post he was still holding at the time of his death on July 9th, he was also one of the Secretaries of the Chemical Society.
There was but one break in his connection with the hospital namely that the caused by the war. In July 1915, he was commissioned Major in the Royal Engineers, and ordered to Gallipoli, to advise on chemical warfare problems, and the complaint he contracted there was probably in no small degree responsible for his final illness. On his return to England he was one of those originally appointed to Gas Warfare Experimental Station at Porton, where he remained till the end of 1917, when he was ordered to the United States to assist in the preparation of the American Gas Warfare Experimental Station.
Dr Le Sueur’s original papers are to be found principally in the Journal of the Chemistry Society. He was a most capable experimenter, who found it necessary to satisfy himself on the minute detail. This probable accounts for the fact that the number of his communications (24) was not large, but they are characterised by a thoroughness, which can only be rightly appreciated by those who know his methods of work. It was however as a teacher that he particularly shone out as a bright star, His capacity for imparting knowledge to others was most pronounced and quiet exceptional, and among his students in his laboratory he was at his best.
Dr Le Sueur’s most marked characteristic as a man was his unfailing loyalty, whether to the science of his adoption, to his colleagues and students, or to his friends. Certainly the Island of Jersey never possessed a more loyal or truer son. His efforts to mask his natural shyness and reserve of manner did not always meet with the success which would allow strangers to recognise the true qualities of the man himself, but those who knew him intimately realise that by his untimely death the science of chemistry has lost a devoted servant, and they have lost a true and loving friend.”

Card sent from Cairo to Elizabeth his sister

Card sent from Cairo to Elizabeth his sister

Prior to the war Le Sueur assisted Dr A.W. Crossley C.M.G, C.B.E, F.R.S. 1869-1927 who was a lecturer in Chemistry at St Thomas’s Hospital, and during this time became a close colleague, and it was Crossley who was the creator of the research station at Porton when the war began. Crossley had an able and close assistant in Miss Nora Renouf 1881-1959, during the war she became a survey officer at the Fuel Research Board. Nora was the born in St Helier, the daughter of John Renouf and Delahay Woods, Le Sueur’s grandmother was a Renouf, but I am unaware of any family connection between the two.

Le Sueur was a founder member of the Jersey Society in London, and became its chairman shortly before his death. He is buried in the family grave at Trinity Church.


La Pierre Des Femmes Wednesday, Apr 23 2014 

Pierre Des Femmes

Pierre Des Femmes


Many will be aware of the largest rock on the south eastern side of Les Ecrehous called Pierre des Femmes which translates into Ladies rock, it is common knowledge about how the rock came about its name, but I had never come across an account of it until I stumbled upon it last year when I was googling for something else and to my surprise there is an account in French which I will roughly translate: The passage between France and and the Channel Islands was a passage for commercial vessels plying their trade between Portsmouth and the islands. The cutters would leave for the Channel Islands and often stop at Cherbourg before tackling the Alderney Race (Le Raz Blanchard), the current would carry them between the islands and sometimes past the Ecrehous before making for the main Jersey port of St Helier. In this period of time things were not good in Liverpool with epidemics and unemployment etc., at the same time Jersey was maunfacturing clothes and pottery and taking on workers. Many young and elderly women left their homes and family to seek work and provide for them. emmigrated to St Helier. One year at the end of summer the brig “Minot’s Light” as usual took on some forty women bound for Jersey They were making good way with a north east wind and were passing Les Ecrehous when the rudder became damaged, perhaps it broke under strain as it passed the shoals, or hit a submerged object, nobody did or will ever know. The Captain called for the ships carpenter to fix it, and this was not the best time for this to happen as they were now being driven towards the Ecrehous reef, the sails were let fly so as to allow the rudder to be fixed, and the flapping of them caused some alarm among the passengers. The captain went below and found the carpenter and his assisant strugglig to repair with the bar flying around in the confined space and their faces were bloodied where they had been struck by it. The captain called for the experienced boatswain to see if he could fix it. The captain went back on deck and then there was an awful shudder and he ran up onto the bridge and saw the sea foaming around them with the out of site rocks below them, he decided to haul in the sails in the hope that the boat would heel over and clear the reef, but it only pushed them more onto the rocks, panic amongst the women set in. A large wave bigger than all the others pushed them hard against the rocks and the dreaded sound of water entering the damaged hull was immediately heard. This was the end and the captain gave the order to lowere the boats in the hope they would get off before the mastes broke and fell down upon them, the boats though were stuck with on one side they were stuck onboard and the other they were being hit by the waves and the rock, they did manage to get one in a useable condition. The ships carpenter was no where to be seen and presumed lost below, two women had been crushed and killed by a falling boom, and one of the crew had been lost trying to free a boat. The sea settled slightly and the second in command ordered everyone to try and make their way onto the nearby rock, half of the women had been washed away and weighed down by their waterlogged garments. Eventually some of the younger, fitter or just lucky ones managed to mount the rock, and the boat was continually being bashed on the rocks and then their was a large crashing noise as the main mast broke and fell. In all 23 women and 9 crew had survived on the rock that was out of reach of the waves but had no vegetation upon it. The women starting drying their clothes although it was not cold but night time was not far away, the crew were concerned as they watched their vessel break up as they had no fire or water and no apparent means of gaining safety.

The young officer suggested they swim to the vegetated island visible not far away stating that the rock they were on would be covered by a couple of metres of water, and that it would not be too difficult a swim as the tide would take them that way, then the women stated most of them could not swim, and even some of the crew admitted likewise. With the “Minot’s Light” breaking up and becoming covered by the tide those that were able had no option but to strip to their underwear and attempt the swim and the others sat their desolate and sobbing awaiting their fate. They made good progress over a short distance but the women were not accustomed to swimming in such a sea and were soon lost to it, eventually only six of the men managed to reach the shingle and the island. Then men tried as best they could to dry their clothes and warm themselves, then tried to get some sleep, not long after the cries and screams of those being taken by the sea could be heard, eventually the survivors fell asleep and awoked in clear sunshine with not a sign of anyone else or the remains of “Minot’s Light”  Nothing reamined to be seen at Pierre des Femmes and no one would ever want to venture near this site of such an unfortunate tradegy.

The author was never sure of the tradegy that is related above but one day he related the story to friends father from Morlaix who had been a Merchant seaman and he said it is true as he had seen a plaque in Liverpool which commerated those on the “Minot’s Light” lost off the French coast.

translated from an account by Gilles Letournel

The version I have heard but from whom I do not recall was that there was an English vessel that struck a rock and was taking in a great deal of water and expected to sink, and so the captain put the women on Pierre des Femmes thinking it would not be covered by the tide, and during the night the vessel managed to make its way into the sheltered waters of the reef and remained afloat but the woman had been washed from the rock never to be seen again. Given that this was such a disaster it is surprising that I have not come across any substantial record or mention of this episode, but given the name of the rock has lasted one suspects the account must be true, as is the rock La Balance at les Dirouilles which happened in 1816 when a French transport ship “La Balance” on its way from St Malo to Canada met its fate and 40 perished and 70 survived and reached the barracks at Rozel where they were given food and shelter.

Zeno Swietoslawski 1811 – 1875 Monday, Apr 21 2014 

Zeno Swietoslawski

Zeno Swietoslawski

Zeno Boleslaw Swietoslawski was born in Warsaw and was said to have participated in the November Uprising in Poland, the first record of him in Jersey is with the 1841 census when he was living at 13 Dorset Street, St Helier. The University of Gdansk have a character profile of him which notes the following:  He was the son of an apparently fairly wealthy noble originally from Ukraine. He started his peregrinations in the early 1830s presumably after the so-called Novemeber Uprising and was for a time in London, writing letters to his father complaining about his poverty. His father would continually send him funds. He ended up in Jersey and reported to his father that Jersey produced a lot of eggs. His father deduced from this that wheat or rye must also be grown and asked about the local serfs and if there was a large Jewish community in Jersey. (There are a lot of such comments about cultural differences, e.g. son complaining he had to eat oysters in London, whereas in Warsaw they were then considered a delicacy.) He first wanted his son to buy land, but eventually he gave him money to buy a printing press. He was very religious and deeply committed to his socialist cause, so was his wife. His political pamphlets, however, were not popular among other activists. The author Teodor Tomasz Jepary met the couple some time in the 1850’s and said everything was pretty neglected and run down in their house because they were both so engaged in the cause. They helped other insurgents get passports to France, including one that also fought in the January Uprising. There was a whole network or cells of Polish insurgents, revolutionaries, socialists, anarchist and religious zealots. Zenon’s cell? commune? (gmina) was origanally called Lud Polski (Polish People) later to be called Humañ (a town in Ukraine and site of 1768 massacre of Polish nobles and Jews). Like pretty much everything else in this Polish religious noble socialist’s life, the commune or cell was thought by some who also noted Zenon was a thoroughly decent man committed to the cause (whatever that was), but hadn’t really achieved much.

He purchased a steam printing press from the French abolitionist Victor Schœlcher who stayed for a short period in Jersey with their mutual acquantaince Victor Hugo, the press published from Dorset Street under the name L’Imprimerie Universelle and published the weekly paper L’Homme which was edited by militant poscrits. In the late 1856 he co-founded the Gromada Rewolucyjna Londyn a Polish social democratic  revolutionary group.

He is buried in the south east corner of Green Street Cemetery in the family grave which is in a state of neglect.

Swietoslawski grave

Swietoslawski grave

Notes on Polish in Jersey Saturday, Apr 5 2014 

Polish Festival 2005

Polish Festival 2005


The following is a list of Polish people that lived in Jersey:

O kształceniu Serca

O kształceniu Serca

Felix (Feliks) Nowosielsk 1800-1864 died London, he fought with distinction in the November Uprising 1830-31, and was awarded Polands highest military award the Order of Military Virtue. The Russian Tsar published an order which named Nowosielski, and was sentenced to death by hanging on the gallows or exile forever from the Polish Kingdom. Whilst in Jersey Felix wrote and published in 1853 O kształceniu Serca


 List of Poscrits in Jersey:  Lud. Kordecki, Joachim Leiewel, Roch Rupnienshi, Zeno Swietolawski, K. Balinskiegu, Tchozeswki

1841 census

John Dzierbinski 35 living Chapel lane with Nico Rupniewski. 1851 age 54, refugee, living Havre des Pas

Nico (Nicodemus) Rupniewski 35 took part in the November Uprising brother of Roch (see below), October 1836 recorded as an alien arriving at Southampton from Jersey with a fellow Pole Kisiel, he died in Poland 1878.

Amb Smolinski 30 living Chapel Lane, only noted as from foreign parts but presuming his name and associated with those above make him possibly Polish.


Francis Badet 48, living in St Peter, servant to Abraham Asplet

Anthony Bernstroff 53, Polish Officer (1871 – Government Annutant)
Living in the same house in Trinity were Joseph Malerewski 54, and Joseph Malerewski 42 also Polish Officers. 1871 Old St John’s Road Joseph Malczeweski age 71.

Ignotio Butkousis 51, Trinity Road, St Helier, visitor

John Dzuabanski 54, refugee, living Havre des Pas
Rebecca Elias R 64, living with her nephew Saul Samuels, Parade Place
Juda Harris 65, general dealer, living Hosiptal/Workhouse
Rachael Harris 64 Hawker, living Cheapside with sons Israel (born England), Henry and Solomon
Charles Janierviez 51 born Poland, Major in Polish Army and Elizabeth Janierviez 38 born England. Living “Belle Vue”, St Saviour
Florian Mikulowski 46, annuitant, living Philip Street

George Mikulowski 43, Refugee, Major in Polish Army wife Emilie Fauchet ? born Paris, sons Emile 9 born France, Edward 6 born Jersey. Living at 19 Belmont Road. 1861 German Professor, living still at 19 Belmont Road, described himself “an honest exile who is obliged to work due to the weight of immense misfortune” and one of the first photographers in Jersey, eventually ran Hotel de L’Europe, Mulcaster Street (1)

John Michelowski 49 also 1861 & 1871 census Visitor Immigrant, in house of John De Gruchy 44 New Street.

Heres Neaton 52 and his wife Esther both hawking Jewellery, living 2 Philip Street

John Newman 36. living Conway Street

Auguste Ruashicrofiege 65 exile, visitor – “Priscilla Cottage” Poonah Road

Roch Rupinieski 47 Refugee, living as a lodger with Mrs Jane Warren near or at “Belle Vue” (neighbour Charles Janierviez), took part in the November Uprising and awarded the Military Cross of Virtue. 1861 & 1871 census has him living at Mount Pleasant, Liverpool with widow Jane Warren of Jersey, died in Liverpool 1876.

J Ryoski 24 Pastry Cook, 3 Snow Hill

Saul Samuels 31, with English wife Hannah 26, and children Joel, Tobias, and Selina, living Parade Place, dealer in Jewellery and Hardware.

Grave of Albert Schmitt Almorah Cemetery

Grave of Albert Schmitt Almorah Cemetery

Albert Schmitt 52 (also on 1871 age 62?) Will in Jersey Archive left money to Polish Institute in Paris. Refugee 69 Stopford Road – Clement Le Sueur, also Hospital bienfaiteur for the sum of £20

1861 census

Anthony Bernsdorff 61, former army officer, Victoria Village

Julian Besnaski 57, refugee, inmate General Hospital/Workhouse

Louis R De Monte Drury 32, M.D. not practicing, Beaumont, St Lawrence, 1871 Ludvig R Drury, born Russia, British subject, Ship Chandler, living in Kingston upon Hull

Israel Harris 75, Merchant, widower, boarding at 1 Colomberie Cottage

Charles Jancewiez 66, Army Major, living with his English wife Elizabeth 50, at 13 Clarence Road

Joseph Malezewski 61, Officer in the Polish Army, Victoria Village, 1881 Joseph Malezewski 81 Polish refugee, 3 Old Street, St Helier, 1891 census Joseph Mabzeulki age 91, pensioner

Susan Nathan 62, Shop Assistant, living Pier Road with nephew John Corbel 24, born Cape of Good Hope

Joseph Nowakouski 50, Officer Polish Army, 1881 70, Joseph Nowakouski exile, ex military, Victoria Village, Trinity

Isaac Samuels 68, widower and visitor at Oxford Cottage, Oxford Road

Moses Samuels 29, Pharmacist, wife Rachael 29 English, living 9 Broad Street

Albert Schmitt 57, living Green Street, in exile since 1831

Theophile Tzdebski 50, Military Officer, living Don Road

John Sobolewski 60, Polish Refugee Maupertuis, St Clement, 1881 John Sobolewski 80, retired Army Officer, boarder Maupertuis Road, St Clement

Martin Szymanowsky 59, Captain in the 10th regiment of the Polish Cavalary, 39 Parade, 1871 Marchin Szymanowsky 69 Refugee, Captain in the Polish Cavalry. 39 Parade Place

Jacob Wolf 60, widower, traveller, living 26 Hue Street

1871 Census

Anthony Bernsterft 70, living Trinity, Government annuitant

George Bolheron born 1798, living “Rose Cottage” St Saviour

Alexandre Breanski living St Martin, annuitant

Jean Michalowski born living Cheapside, St Helier, born 1791, annuitant

Alexander Holinski 54 born Warsaw. Annutant. Merinda 38 daugher?, born Suffolk, son Anthony 10, born Paris. Boarding House David Place

Charles Malawski

Charles Malawski

Charles Malawski, Inn Keeper age 60, with Rosalie Malawski (Nee Parish) age 36 born France and Jules S Malawski age 8 born Jersey.

Joseph Malczeweski age 71. (same person on 1851?)

Marchin Szymanowsky 69 Refugee, Captain in the Polish Cavalry. 39 Parade Place

1881 census

George De Bulharyn

George De Bulharyn

George De Bulharyn 82 Polish refugee, boarding at “Milton House” George Town, St Saviour
Jules Marylski 66, Gentleman, born Mazovic, Poland, wife Florence 35 (born Florence, Italy) (when she died she was buried at Almorah Cemetery, the body was exumed and buried at Mont Matre, Paris)

Joseph Nowakouski 70, exile, ex military, Victoria Village, Trinity

Adam Pistu 78, annuitant, lodger 36 Aquila Road

George Zerboni (Artist) 48, and wife Mary 45. 1891 living 1 Queen’s Road, 1901 living in a chalet

1891 census

Vanda C Mowerynski 37 and daughter Sophie 17 both born Poland, 3 more daughters, and a son born England living “Horizon View” St Aubin’s Road, St Helier. Appears in the 1911 census as Vanda Casimir 49 married, living at “Font Hill” St Saviour, daughter Haydee 24 born Poland, 3 daughters and a son all born Greenwich.

1911 census

Marks Rosebaum age 58, tailor, 30 Don Road, St Helier

Zeno Swietoslawski was born in Warsaw and was active through printing during his time in Jersey, there is an article of his works in the Bulletin of the Societe Jersiaise. I will do another post on him and his work.

On the 1851 census
Dorset Street
Zeno B 39
Julia G born Devon 29 his wife?
Raphael T 6 – Jersey
Adolphus J 4 – Jersey
Francis A 2 – Jersey
Julien E 9m – Jersey

1861 Zeno is in the Hospital/Workhouse

1871 Julia and Zeno (59) are still here with grandchildren

1881 in Liverpool we have Vessel:”Ullock”
Master AlexanderSwietoslaski  44, and married

Jersey Archives have the following:

1944 Zofia Jeziorna, 18 Gloucester Street, Polish National

Registration Card of Wanda Janik

Jersey Evening Post 1980

Polish artist Felix Topolski left the Island after a four day stay in which he completed 38 paintings, best known for his work for the Royal Family, he stayed with Mrs Sally Le Gallais.

Pictures of banners used during the 2005 Festival –

(1) Notes on George Mikulowski early Jersey photographer:


Minister fails to protect rare St Helier granite arch Wednesday, Mar 5 2014 

17th century Jersey arch

17th century Jersey arch

It has just been announced that Planning Minister Deputy Duhamel has passed the plans for the building of a modern six storey office block on the former works site of my building ancestor Thomas Le Gros and sons who built a number local harbours and undertook the hospital rebuild after a major fire, these I documented in a previous post

The following is part of my submission to the original plans:

I strongly agree and support the learned comments submitted by Mrs Kerley on behalf of the National Trust and Mr Ferrari regarding this and the other related buildings and so will not repeat their statements, and I add the following:

My concern is regarding the fine and very significant granite Jersey arch within No.70 Esplanade a proposed listed building which will end up in “storage” under the current plans and one presumes with an uncertain and probable insignificant and unprotected  future, which I feel is contrary to 3.1, 3.2,3.5,3.6,3.7,3.20,3.21,3.22,3.23, of the “Historic Environment” of the Island Plan. The later initials on the arch T.C.L.G. 1879 stand for Tom Charles Le Gros 1825-1885 an ancestor of mine whose building works were on this site, the 1861 census has him as a building contractor employing 100 men.

The following statement in the applicants supporting documents EIS 2, the site and the proposed development: 2.1.9 “features an impressive semi-circular carriage entrance and reused date stones from an earlier building” this comment has not been substantiated in any way, the date stones may well be from the existing building and have certainly been part of it for over 130 years if not more, it may be possible that these stones have been used from somewhere else but there is no mention of this, and one possible connection is that the father of T.C. Le Gros as initialled on the Jersey arch may have come from Mont au Prete a property once owned by his father Thomas Le Gros 1797-1881 which does have columns missing the voussoirs these have a slight resemblance in design to those at 70 Esplanade. If this was the case I would suggest the arch does then have even more cultural and heritage significance. There is also no comment on the other initials on the arch: PLS (Le Sueur?) 1674 inside a shield, IN CB on either side, and another PLS.  Before any decision on its future is made I propose that the history and providence (provenance) of the arch be fully and properly examined. It is worth noting that the adjacent seawall that recently gained a great deal of media and public attention most notably from “Save our Shoreline”  was rightly given protection as a listed building and saved was in fact built by Tom Charles Le Gros.

Old Jersey Houses Volume 1, Joan Stevens: Page 92 Listed as a surviving arch of what would appear only one of four in the south of St Helier. Page 87,89 “the vocal point of the local house, and its most spectacular feature, the round arch…the round arch usually called Norman, and shown on very small houses depicted in the Bayeux tapestry, is the very epitome of the early farmhouse in Jersey, and there is infinite variety in its details. It appears in different forms in both Jersey and Guernsey, and both spring from a common ancestor in France, but in each island a distinctive form has developed. It is sometimes claimed that the Guernsey arch came from Brittany, and ours from Normandy. See also images from pages 112 to 113. – which includes Mont au Prete where Thomas Le Gros senior lived, or near to and what appears to be an altered road side arch without the voussoirs.

As it is now only neighbouring residents who commented on the initial plans who can appeal to the Royal Court against the Ministers decision unless the Parish of St Helier arrange a meeting and parishioners decide to appeal, as St Ouen are currently in the process of doing with the Plemont development.

Previous post on the arch and the buildings of Thomas Le Gros and sons:

Ancient peat and clay continued Friday, Jan 31 2014 

Le Port peat square

Le Port peat square

The most significant exposure of peat was at Le Port in the middle of St Ouen’s Bay which stayed in view until a few days ago (it may well uncover with the current weather), I had seen peat in the area before in the early 80’s a little more off the sea wall.

post 2 port

In this second picture of the area you can just see the hoof marks animals on the near and right corner, with a slightly sunken path starting to run diagonally down, but not continuing along the peat. It has been suggested that these are early cattle marks which they may well be, but I do wonder if they also may belong to horses that were engaged in vraicking and travelled along here before the sea wall was built and the shoreline would have been a dune system with paths giving access to the beach.

Remains of tree stumps

Remains of tree stumps

At the northern end of the bay there was an area that I had not personally seen before which was south of exposures I have noted previously, there was a considerable amount of tree remains as can be seen in the picture above and the one below showing a good length of a beech tree a specices that sems to be fairly common here.

Remains of beech tree

Remains of beech tree


This picture is of an area to the south of Les Laveurs slip which showed an area of base grit and a considerable amount of stone flint which is not a local stone.

A couple of days after seeing the area I was contacted by someone concerned that someone had been digging the peat up, on visiting the area it was evident that a digger had driven over and dug up a considerable amount of area adjacent to a groyne that had suffered some storm damage, I have been informed that the incident is being investigated, and BBC Jersey did publicise the damage, as I said to them its lasted for 7,000 years and the local government department (TTS) have destroyed it in a day.

Digger damage

Digger damage

The incoming tide washed the peat and several stumps away

The incoming tide washed the peat & several stumps away

I have browsed the internet for other similar interesting areas and related information and came across this blog Micoburin which discusses the area around the Tees and a possible Tsunami and states the following ” a marine transgression recorded in a single pollen profile at around 8,200 years ago (and see below). A silty-sandy limus (detrital muds) at greater depth nearby yielded a date of 8900-8100 cal BC (89.8% probability). Perhaps this transgression represents the climatic cooling period around 6200 BC (the “8ka event”) that saw the collapse of North American ice sheets, disturbance of the Gulf Stream and rapid sea level rise?”

At Borth, Cerdigion a wattle walkway dating back to the Bronze age has recently been revealed again, it was studied in 2012 and covered in this post by “Heritage of Wales News”

Further north of Borth is Tywyn Beach which has a large area of peat some of which has been cut out, and includes WW 2 tank tracks, pictures on the local photogahic site the area gives rise to the legend of the lost Kingdom of Wales “Cantre’r Gwaelod”

Previous posts on the subject:

“Hercules” reveals ancient coastal peat & clay Thursday, Jan 30 2014 

At the start of the year we had the storm “Hercules” that gave the US severe weather conditions arrive on our shore, coupled with spring tides of 11.7 metres this made from some intense beach movement, this was evident mostly on the west and south coast, the following photographs detail some of the exposure:

Exposed clay with trench of lighter clay in the centre

Exposed clay with trench of lighter clay in the centre

Pictured above is part of a length of clay than lines the south east coast, this bit by Le Hurel slip appears unique in that it has either a drainage ditch or early field boundary (or both), the Societe Jersiaise archaeologist Robert Waterhouse and his team did some excavations on the area and a report will be published shortly.

La Mare with La Motte in the distance

La Mare with La Motte in the distance

I had been informed that some peat had been previously seen in the Greve D’Azzette area and had a look and only found this small exposure of a tan coloured clay which is similar to finds elswehere in the island and Les Ecrehous.

post1 hdp clay

Pictured above is part of a small area uncovered by the foot of steps at Havre des Pas which was a mixture of tan and grey clay.

post 5 pulente gravelines

I was informed of an interesting exposure at La Pulente and it turned out to be one of the more interesting that I have seen in that it was lower down the beach compared to other exposures, I suppose being part of the headland may have something to do with this. I am not sure if the colours of clays and grits on these base layers as pictured are this colour naturally or have been stained by the rotting kelp that accumulates in the area, but they make pretty images if nothing else.

La Pulente with dark base layer

La Pulente with dark base layer

Also interesting is that this gritty base layer is just that a base and usually associated with start of our early ice age geology, but here we have the addition of another darker gritty layer.

Horse & cart tracks

Horse & cart tracks

I was lucky enough to see these exposure which only showed for a couple of days and had hoof prints and cart tracks which I presume are from 19th century vraicking attivity that the area is well known for, so it would appear this clay has shown little or not at all over the last hundred and fifty years or so.

Peat remains

Peat remains

This small piece of worn peat is part of the La Pulente clay area with the lighter clay just visible below it.

Base grit

Base grit

Further up the beach north of the Bunker a large area of hard base grit was uncovered there was no other signs of any other layers in the area.
I will do another post on the peat found in the bay.

Sarah Belzoni Wednesday, Jan 1 2014 

Grave of Sarah Belzoni

Grave of Sarah Belzoni

Sarah Bane thought to have been born in Bristol in 1873 and died St Helier, Jersey the 12th January 1870 and pictured above is her grave at Mont a l’Abbé cemetery. Sarah married Italian born Giovanni Battista Belzoni 1778-1823  One of the most colorful personages in the annals of early 19th century exploration in Egypt, Belzoni trained as an engineer, then becoming a barber in the Netherlands where he fled in 1803 to England to avoid going to jail. There he married Sarah and for a short time they became street entertainers and joined a circus, Giovanni at 6 foot 7 inches did a strong man act  .

Belzoni went to Egypt in 1815, intending to build hydraulic irrigation systems for Muhammad Ali, the Pasha of Egypt. To arrange introductions, he contacted the former French consul at Alexandria, Bernardino Drovetti, who had served in Napoleon’s military. Belzoni at length, however, abandoned his hydraulic project, since local farmers and officials were reluctant to abandon long-held, traditional methods of oxen-drawn irrigation machinery.

Giovanni Belzoni

Giovanni Belzoni

Belzoni, who had explored much of the Nile region by then, turned to the collection of antiquities on commission. In this, he was often in competition with the collection agents of Drovetti. Among other accomplishments, Belzoni mapped the passageways and tombs in a Giza pyramid, as described in his book, Recent Discoveries in Egypt.  In 1818 he transported many Egyptian sculptures, including a large head of Ramesses II, to England. These remain in the British Museum collections. Belzoni’s exploits are chronicled in a book by Brian Fagan, The Rape of the Nile.

After Giovanni’s death in 1828 Sarah went to live in Brussels. She received donations fran several masonic lodges, the Duke of Sussex, and the Duke of Sussex, and a subscription fund was set up and chaired by the publisher John Murray, after much lobbying she a Civil List pension of £100 in 1851 ” In considerationof the services rendered to science by the researches of her late husband the celebrated African traveller, and of her own circumstances. In trust to Thomas W. Waller, Esq., and Simon Salter Esq.” In 1857 she moved to the Channel Islands and appears on the 1861 census in Guernsey living at New Place, St Peter Port as a a boarder of Mrs Harriet Ozanne. In Jersey she lived and died at Hautbois Gardens, Bellozane. Two days before her death she wrote a will leaving her possessions to her God-daughter Selina Belzoni Tucker from Cheltenham. Local research of the Jersey details was undertaken by Societe Jersiaise Librarian Anna Baghiani.
Sources and further reading:

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