Discussion:
French title Sieur de la Barriere, 17th century
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Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-07 19:24:47 UTC
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Hello all,

I have an ancestor, born mid 17th century, who called himself Abraham Vallet, Sieur de la Barriere. He came from Montignac le Coq, in France, and married in the French church in Amsterdam, Holland.

Until now I haven't been able to find any French records that could prove his birth, which should have been around 1664. I'm also curious about his title "Sieur de la Barriere". One person found on wikipedia with this title was a knight, and geneanet has a few sieurs and dames and demoiselles with this title too. Also, some French gazette has some persons with titles "de Barriere" (without "la") who served in the French military, also in the 17th century.

Can anyone direct me to French church records for this period, another gazette, or other sources that may provide clues about his title, and its origins?

Thanks,

Enno
Juan Sardina
2020-06-15 00:23:11 UTC
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Post by Enno Borgsteede
Hello all,
I have an ancestor, born mid 17th century, who called himself Abraham Vallet, Sieur de la Barriere. He came from Montignac le Coq, in France, and married in the French church in Amsterdam, Holland.
Until now I haven't been able to find any French records that could prove his birth, which should have been around 1664. I'm also curious about his title "Sieur de la Barriere". One person found on wikipedia with this title was a knight, and geneanet has a few sieurs and dames and demoiselles with this title too. Also, some French gazette has some persons with titles "de Barriere" (without "la") who served in the French military, also in the 17th century.
Can anyone direct me to French church records for this period, another gazette, or other sources that may provide clues about his title, and its origins?
Thanks,
Enno
Hello,

You may want to check the Archives of the Charente Maritime.

THere seem to be some microfilms available for Montignac-le-Coq, but only for part of the 17th century. They might be good enough if there were relatives of your Abraham Vallet in them.


https://archives.lacharente.fr/arkotheque/client/ad_charente/_depot_arko/articles/198/repertoire-des-microfilms_doc.pdf

but why was he in Holland?

Was his family Protestant?

Just curious,

J. Sardina
Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-15 20:31:03 UTC
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Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
You may want to check the Archives of the Charente Maritime.
THere seem to be some microfilms available for Montignac-le-Coq, but only for part of the 17th century. They might be good enough if there were relatives of your Abraham Vallet in them.
https://archives.lacharente.fr/arkotheque/client/ad_charente/_depot_arko/articles/198/repertoire-des-microfilms_doc.pdf
Thank you. This is very interesting, because he was born around 1664, so he might be on film. Is there any way to contact a genealogist in the neighborhood, who might be willing to look at that film?

Incidentally, a fellow Dutch genealogist already pointed me to the arhive site, at

https://archives.lacharente.fr/s/12/registres-paroissiaux-et-etat-civil/?fbclid=IwAR31DiYItYIYuhtbUfxrCAV-DD-eMytiBv6V2hePaC6edlXuPkBNReEmJVQ

but when I tried that, I found no records before 1737.

On that page, I read about "Sources numérisées" which I interpret as digitized sources. Is that right? And does that mean that the microfilms have not been digitized, so they are not available on-line? Could I contact the archive and have someone look through the film, possibly for a fee? I have no idea how easy French research is, in the archives.
Post by Juan Sardina
but why was he in Holland?
Was his family Protestant?
I think so, yes. He married in the Église Wallonne in Amsterdam, and that is a formar Catholic church, offered to French Protestant refugees by the end of the 16 th century, as you can read here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walloon_Church,_Amsterdam

Most of the church books are available on-line on FamilySearch and the Amsterdam city archive site.

Regards,

Enno
Denis Beauregard
2020-06-16 01:27:50 UTC
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On Mon, 15 Jun 2020 22:31:03 +0200, Enno Borgsteede
Post by Enno Borgsteede
Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
You may want to check the Archives of the Charente Maritime.
THere seem to be some microfilms available for Montignac-le-Coq, but only for part of the 17th century. They might be good enough if there were relatives of your Abraham Vallet in them.
https://archives.lacharente.fr/arkotheque/client/ad_charente/_depot_arko/articles/198/repertoire-des-microfilms_doc.pdf
Thank you. This is very interesting, because he was born around 1664, so he might be on film. Is there any way to contact a genealogist in the neighborhood, who might be willing to look at that film?
Incidentally, a fellow Dutch genealogist already pointed me to the arhive site, at
https://archives.lacharente.fr/s/12/registres-paroissiaux-et-etat-civil/
You can (and should in my opinion) remove from ?fbclid= when you
share a link. This is only a tag from facebook and is increasing the
size of the link which can be a problem sometimes.
Post by Enno Borgsteede
but when I tried that, I found no records before 1737.
There are 2 series of records in France. 1737 is the beginning of the
2nd copy (also known as AD copy). The other copy (often from the
1600s) is the town or church first copy (or AC copy). 1737 would mean
the 1st copy was destroyed.
Post by Enno Borgsteede
On that page, I read about "Sources numérisées" which I interpret as digitized sources. Is that right? And does that mean that the microfilms have not been digitized, so they are not available on-line? Could I contact the archive and have someone look through the film, possibly for a fee? I have no idea how easy French research
is, in the archives.

You can always write to archives while it is not sure you will receive
an answer, particularly now. But many records were indexed and are
available from geneabank (a group of French genealogical societies
sharing their databases). You must be member of a participating
society to see the details.

See for example:

http://www.geneabank.org/cgi-bin/listdatabase.pl?region=France+-+16
http://www.geneabank.org/cgi-bin/listdatabase.pl?region=France+-+17

In many cases, only the marriages were indexed.

As for protestants, they lost their rights in 1685.


Denis
--
Denis Beauregard - généalogiste émérite (FQSG)
Les Français d'Amérique du Nord - http://www.francogene.com/gfan/gfan/998/
French in North America before 1722 - http://www.francogene.com/gfna/gfna/998/
Sur cédérom/DVD/USB à 1790 - On CD-ROM/DVD/USB to 1790
Juan Sardina
2020-06-15 00:51:01 UTC
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Post by Enno Borgsteede
Hello all,
I have an ancestor, born mid 17th century, who called himself Abraham Vallet, Sieur de la Barriere. He came from Montignac le Coq, in France, and married in the French church in Amsterdam, Holland.
Until now I haven't been able to find any French records that could prove his birth, which should have been around 1664. I'm also curious about his title "Sieur de la Barriere". One person found on wikipedia with this title was a knight, and geneanet has a few sieurs and dames and demoiselles with this title too. Also, some French gazette has some persons with titles "de Barriere" (without "la") who served in the French military, also in the 17th century.
Can anyone direct me to French church records for this period, another gazette, or other sources that may provide clues about his title, and its origins?
Thanks,
Enno
Hello,

Searching in Geneanet, one can find a few mentions of the Vallet family. In particular, a few of them are mentioned in the following article in reference to the alliances between the Simon and the Vallet.

The Jacques de Vallet, sieur de La Barriere and Jean Vallet, sieur de Champagne, ecuyer, brothers of Anne Vallet, wife of Louis Simon, sieur de La Fougere, appear to be from a couple of generations before your Abraham.


https://www.saintseverin.fr/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/BIS-85-mai-juin1991.pdf

Good luck

J. Sardina
Juan Sardina
2020-06-15 01:05:44 UTC
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Post by Enno Borgsteede
Hello all,
I have an ancestor, born mid 17th century, who called himself Abraham Vallet, Sieur de la Barriere. He came from Montignac le Coq, in France, and married in the French church in Amsterdam, Holland.
Until now I haven't been able to find any French records that could prove his birth, which should have been around 1664. I'm also curious about his title "Sieur de la Barriere". One person found on wikipedia with this title was a knight, and geneanet has a few sieurs and dames and demoiselles with this title too. Also, some French gazette has some persons with titles "de Barriere" (without "la") who served in the French military, also in the 17th century.
Can anyone direct me to French church records for this period, another gazette, or other sources that may provide clues about his title, and its origins?
Thanks,
Enno
Hello,


There are more bits of information regarding the Vallets of Saint-Severin, of the 17th century in

https://www.saintseverin.fr/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/BIS-91-mai1993.pdf

Apparently they were ecuyers and had made a fortune in the paper-making business. I guess Abraham was from that family.

It is not clear if the information given in this PDF may have been taken from archives other than the parish books, which seem to survive from that time.

Good luck in your search

J. Sardina
Juan Sardina
2020-06-16 00:00:45 UTC
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Post by Enno Borgsteede
Hello all,
I have an ancestor, born mid 17th century, who called himself Abraham Vallet, Sieur de la Barriere. He came from Montignac le Coq, in France, and married in the French church in Amsterdam, Holland.
Until now I haven't been able to find any French records that could prove his birth, which should have been around 1664. I'm also curious about his title "Sieur de la Barriere". One person found on wikipedia with this title was a knight, and geneanet has a few sieurs and dames and demoiselles with this title too. Also, some French gazette has some persons with titles "de Barriere" (without "la") who served in the French military, also in the 17th century.
Can anyone direct me to French church records for this period, another gazette, or other sources that may provide clues about his title, and its origins?
Thanks,
Enno
Well, it is definitely an exciting line for research, but there are some difficulties.

If you are lucky you may be find a local genealogist from the association who may have information about this family or access to the microfilms.

I have not been able to determine if the microfilm is available online, but I don't think it possible to view it, unless the Mormons have a copy. Some of these microfilms have restrictions for viewing. On the other hand, in other archives such as the department f Aube, you can view the documents online for this period, from places where the records survived, of course.

Apparently earlier records for that particular town were destroyed at some point, but at least we seem to have the 17th century parish books.

As far as i could tell, the Vallets were Catholics, but there might have been some members who converted in the 1500s. If Abraham's parents were among the Protestants, we might not find him in the parish books. I am not sure if there are any resources that could be checked for those cases. Do you know if he provided the names of his parents where he settled?

And what did he do for a living? from the articles that we can find online, it seems that the Vallet were in the business of paper making and owned at least one mill. They may have been or claimed to be ecuyers from generations before, but i am not sure if there is any survived documentation about the origins of the family. However, you might find it by accident in an article about paper-making in France. I found just such information about a family I was researching, quite by accident.

Good luck,

J. Sardina
Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-18 18:58:11 UTC
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Post by Juan Sardina
As far as i could tell, the Vallets were Catholics, but there might have been some members who converted in the 1500s. If Abraham's parents were among the Protestants, we might not find him in the parish books. I am not sure if there are any resources that could be checked for those cases. Do you know if he provided the names of his parents where he settled?
To my regret he did not. I have the names of him, his wife, a cousin, and probably also a brother.
Post by Juan Sardina
And what did he do for a living? from the articles that we can find online, it seems that the Vallet were in the business of paper making and owned at least one mill. They may have been or claimed to be ecuyers from generations before, but i am not sure if there is any survived documentation about the origins of the family. However, you might find it by accident in an article about paper-making in France. I found just such information about a family I was researching, quite by accident.
For the marriage ban, he said to be a merchant, which looks quite fitting, although a link to ecuyers because a friend found a document that lists one man titled "de Barriere", without "la", as aide-de-camp, who helped a Duc de la Valette in a fight in the beginning of the 17th century. There's also a knight with the title "de la Barriere" on wikipedia.

Anyway, all this will be still sort of a guess until I find can specific sources in France. The PDFs that you mentioned earlier are very interesting to read, and I'm quite surprised to see some obvious Dutch names in those.

Do you have any idea how I can find the society that wrote these articles?

Regards,

Enno
Juan Sardina
2020-06-24 02:33:10 UTC
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Post by Enno Borgsteede
Post by Juan Sardina
If Abraham's parents were among the Protestants, we might not find him in the parish books. I am not sure if there are any resources that could be checked for those cases. Do you know if he provided the names of his parents where he settled?
To my regret he did not. I have the names of him, his wife, a cousin, and probably also a brother.
Hello,

Sorry for the delay but i was trying to find out who was he author of the articles published in the bulletins of Saint-Severin.

https://www.saintseverin.fr/vie-communale/bulletin-communal/

I did not succeed. However, if you have time, you may want to look through the various PDF files since they contain articles about the history of Saint-Severin. A few of them mention the wars of Religion and the various merchants and paper-making establishments.

Can you check if by any chance any of those associates had anything to do with the paper-making business?
Post by Enno Borgsteede
For the marriage ban, he said to be a merchant, which looks quite fitting, although a link to ecuyers because a friend found a document that lists one man titled "de Barriere", without "la", as aide-de-camp, who helped a Duc de la Valette in a fight in the beginning of the 17th century. There's also a knight with the title "de la Barriere" on wikipedia.
Anyway, all this will be still sort of a guess until I find can specific sources in France. The PDFs that you mentioned earlier are very interesting to read, and I'm quite surprised to see some obvious Dutch names in those.
Do you have any idea how I can find the society that wrote these articles?
Regards,
Enno
You are right. There are several Dutch names in those PDF since there was direct link between some merchants of Amsterdam and the moulins of the area. IN particular, it seems that Jean Vallet, sieur de la Barriere, ecuyer, sold certain properties to Van Wezel from Amsterdam, possibly including certain water mills used for making paper.

Unfortunately, I do not see a signature on these articles of the communal bulletin. I guess the authors must have been local researches, possibly a members of a historical or genealogical society of the Charente.

They do, however, say that they are based on notary papers from Saint-Severin.

Good luck,

J. Sardina
Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-25 06:15:36 UTC
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Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
Sorry for the delay but i was trying to find out who was he author of the articles published in the bulletins of Saint-Severin.
https://www.saintseverin.fr/vie-communale/bulletin-communal/
I did not succeed. However, if you have time, you may want to look through the various PDF files since they contain articles about the history of Saint-Severin. A few of them mention the wars of Religion and the various merchants and paper-making establishments.
I downloaded a dozen files, and found that the articles have been running for years. I did not see any hint of an author's name, of authors group.
Post by Juan Sardina
Can you check if by any chance any of those associates had anything to do with the paper-making business?
Which associates do you mean? I have paper making people in other parts of my tree, not this part.
Post by Juan Sardina
You are right. There are several Dutch names in those PDF since there was direct link between some merchants of Amsterdam and the moulins of the area. IN particular, it seems that Jean Vallet, sieur de la Barriere, ecuyer, sold certain properties to Van Wezel from Amsterdam, possibly including certain water mills used for making paper.
Unfortunately, I do not see a signature on these articles of the communal bulletin. I guess the authors must have been local researches, possibly a members of a historical or genealogical society of the Charente.
They do, however, say that they are based on notary papers from Saint-Severin.
The latter is quite clear, because most things that I read are about trades that were registered by a notary and not the things that you'd find in vital records.

On reading a few of the other downloads, I did find more familiar surnames, like BARBIER, which was the name of his wife as registered in the marriage ban, and DE MOREL, which was the name of a cousin who acted as a witness.

What I'm still curious about is how you found these articles. Google did not give any hint whatsoever, and due to my lack of current geographical knowledge, I'd never try reading bulletins from Saint-Severin, which I assume is the municipality for Montignac-le-Coq.

Do you know ways to find out about societies in the area? Can you recommend sites for this?

Thanks!

Enno
Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-25 21:20:38 UTC
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Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
Sorry for the delay but i was trying to find out who was he author of the articles published in the bulletins of Saint-Severin.
https://www.saintseverin.fr/vie-communale/bulletin-communal/
I did not succeed. However, if you have time, you may want to look through the various PDF files since they contain articles about the history of Saint-Severin. A few of them mention the wars of Religion and the various merchants and paper-making establishments.
I checked dozens of bulletins, and found the 1st article in the december 1985 bulletin. The 2nd appears in november 1986, and lists the name of the researcher, and says that it's the start of a monthly series, which actually runs from january 1987 to october 1988, and then takes a one year break, to be resumed in november 1989.
Post by Juan Sardina
You are right. There are several Dutch names in those PDF since there was direct link between some merchants of Amsterdam and the moulins of the area. IN particular, it seems that Jean Vallet, sieur de la Barriere, ecuyer, sold certain properties to Van Wezel from Amsterdam, possibly including certain water mills used for making paper.
I read that two, and in the jan/feb 1991 bulletin I actually found my ancestors brother, Daniel VALLET, Sieur de la Barriere. I'm assuming that he's his brother, because he appears as a witness to the baptism of one of Abraham's children.

Since it's close to midnight, I'll continue with the newer bulletins tomorrow.

Thanks again!

Enno
Juan Sardina
2020-06-26 01:18:28 UTC
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Post by Enno Borgsteede
Post by Juan Sardina
https://www.saintseverin.fr/vie-communale/bulletin-communal/
I checked dozens of bulletins, and found the 1st article in the december 1985 bulletin. The 2nd appears in november 1986, and lists the name of the researcher, and says that it's the start of a monthly series, which actually runs from january 1987 to october 1988, and then takes a one year break, to be resumed in november 1989.
Yes. I noticed that the articles appeared to be a continuation of older articles. I am assuming that the author must have been a local researcher with time and a lot of access to the various archives of Saint-Severin. One of the articles mentions that the parish register are rather fragmentary and that they start late. If there were earlier registers, they must have been destroyed at some point.
Post by Enno Borgsteede
I read that two, and in the jan/feb 1991 bulletin I actually found my ancestors brother, Daniel VALLET, Sieur de la Barriere. I'm assuming that he's his brother, because he appears as a witness to the baptism of one of Abraham's children.
I think that is a likely guess. A lot of times relatives on either side acted as god-parents. I am not certain that these families were Catholic. They might have been protestants. The articles mention a lot of links to La Rochelle and Amsterdam. There was a very important merchant community at La Rochelle and there was also a very important Protestant party there, but it is not clear if these merchants were Protestants. I am hoping that some article studies that topic.
Post by Enno Borgsteede
Since it's close to midnight, I'll continue with the newer bulletins tomorrow.
Thanks again!
Enno
Good luck. I didnt find the articles through Google search looking for the possible relatives of the sieurs de la Barriere. Instead, i got to them while looking for Vallet, and one of the pages that comes through Google mentioned them and inmediately mentioned the Simon family and went on to talk about the merchants and the paper-making business. So I looked for mills and that is how the Saint-Severin articles and websites appeared since some of these mills still exist, and their history briefly described.

It seems that Abraham belonged to the line of sieurs de la Barriere and other places. They appear to have been merchants, but one of the articles mentions that there was a distinction between merchant and master paper-maker. Some of them are described as ecuyers. Being that the case, I would not be surprised if they claimed nobility possibly in the 1600s presented a set of arms.

Did you find Daniel's parents by any chance?

Good luck

J. Sardina
Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-28 10:40:06 UTC
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Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
Did you find Daniel's parents by any chance?
I'm assuming that his father was Jean VALLET, but I'd have to find a baptism to confirm that, and the quickest way to find out may be to donate € 15 to the AGC on-line, and search their database.

Regards,

Enno
Juan Sardina
2020-06-28 12:10:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by Enno Borgsteede
Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
Did you find Daniel's parents by any chance?
I'm assuming that his father was Jean VALLET, but I'd have to find a baptism to confirm that, and the quickest way to find out may be to donate € 15 to the AGC on-line, and search their database.
Regards,
Enno
Hello,

It is possible that the AGC may have more information, but perhaps they may have been studied in an article about the paper-making business or the Huguenots of the area. It seems that the family was not Catholic in the 17th century, so I doubt there are going to be any baptism certificates in the surviving parish registry books.


Good luck

J. Sardina
Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-28 21:42:02 UTC
Permalink
Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
It is possible that the AGC may have more information, but perhaps they may have been studied in an article about the paper-making business or the Huguenots of the area. It seems that the family was not Catholic in the 17th century, so I doubt there are going to be any baptism certificates in the surviving parish registry books.
I doubt that too, but I can always try the AGC database, which has loads of VALLETs in it.

And in the mean time, I also found the full given names of the author of the articles. who is:

https://www.charentelibre.fr/2014/01/02/un-historien-se-penche-sur-les-papeteries-de-saint-severin,1872966.php

I bet you knew this already, but for me it's nice to see a face for the person that wrote so many good things.

Regards,

Enno
s***@gmail.com
2020-06-30 17:32:43 UTC
Permalink
Yes

it is nice to find out the details about the author of the local studies specially in this case where seem not to be other readily available sources of information. Based on the information kept in the archives, it seems notary documents do survive going back into the late 1400s. If you look in geneanet you will find an e-mail address for him there. It is possible he is still active. As far as i can tell from google research, he is still alive. If there is any person who may information on the sieurs de la Barriere and their Vallet relatives, it would be him.

It is also possible he studied their genealogy while documenting the paper-making business, which appears to have started in that area around 1500.

With any luck the line starts in medieval times, but it is not clear when and how they became ecuyers. If they were really ecuyers, I think they should have used arms before, and perhaps those are recorded somewhere.

If I am not mistaken, during the time of Louis XIV, laws were enforced to at least attempt at making sure that whomever used the title of ecuyer was entitled to it and could show proof of it. It may have a more relaxed attitude in previous reigns. Hopefully other members of the group with experience in such matters may be able to confirm.

Best wishes,
J. Sardina

Juan Sardina
2020-06-26 01:37:32 UTC
Permalink
Hello,

This article from the Wikipedia on the business of paper making in the Angoumois mentions the emigration of Protestant paper-makers from the zone specifically to Amsterdam when the Edict of Nantes was revoked.

https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papeterie_en_Angoumois

I am wonder if that is why Abraham Vallet went there, where he would have contacts already, from the families mentioned in the articles of Saint-Severin.

I am guessing that the author may have been a member of the genealogical society of the Charente Maritime. what was his name?

J. Sardina
Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-26 06:13:53 UTC
Permalink
Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
I am guessing that the author may have been a member of the genealogical society of the Charente Maritime. what was his name?
Here's a direct quote from the PDF as converted by free online OCR:

ST SEyER1N Nnvembre 8G
Après des mois de recherches aux archives départementales de Charente etde DOrdogne, il a passé des heures à "décrypter" des documents en vieux français puis il a rédigé une partie de l'histoire de STEVERIN, précise, telle quip ne l'avait jamais écrite.
C'est cette histoire que nous vous livrerons désoriflais chaque mois sous formu de supplément détachable, que vous pourrez conserver.
Pour avoir donné au B.I.M., la •primeur de cette nIUSTOIRE de ST SEVERIN", novs adressons. à Mr J. BEAUVAIS (le modesi,ete.u-)i.es remerciellents à la mesure de la tache accomplie.

I'll have to look for an alternative, because I just ran out of credits there.

Regards,

Enno
Juan Sardina
2020-06-27 00:45:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Enno Borgsteede
Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
I am guessing that the author may have been a member of the genealogical society of the Charente Maritime. what was his name?
ST SEyER1N Nnvembre 8G
Après des mois de recherches aux archives départementales de Charente etde DOrdogne, il a passé des heures à "décrypter" des documents en vieux français puis il a rédigé une partie de l'histoire de STEVERIN, précise, telle quip ne l'avait jamais écrite.
C'est cette histoire que nous vous livrerons désoriflais chaque mois sous formu de supplément détachable, que vous pourrez conserver.
Pour avoir donné au B.I.M., la •primeur de cette nIUSTOIRE de ST SEVERIN", novs adressons. à Mr J. BEAUVAIS (le modesi,ete.u-)i.es remerciellents à la mesure de la tache accomplie.
Very good.

J. Beauvais appears to have been a genealogist and possibly a member of the association of genealogy of the Charente Maritime.

Looking in Google for the name "J. Beauvais" we can find a whole series of articles some of which may have information on some of the families mentioned in the series you were reading:

‎LA RECHERCHE GENEALOGIQUE EN CHARENTE - A LA RENCONTRE DE VOS AIEUX

There seem to have been at least 109 bulletins up to 2004.

They seem to be published by ASSOCIATION GENEALOGIQUE DE LA CHARENTE.

Only a few appear in Google, and a few are still currently available at various book sites. I am nearly 100% sure that your line was of Huguenots there, which might explain why Abraham emigrated to Holland.

I would not be surprised if the Vallet appear in one or more articles since they were owners of important water mills in the area.

Good luck

J. Sardina
Enno Borgsteede
2020-06-27 11:26:39 UTC
Permalink
Hello Juan,
Post by Juan Sardina
I would not be surprised if the Vallet appear in one or more articles since they were owners of important water mills in the area.
OK, that means that there's a lot to look for, still.

In the mean time, a fellow Dutch genealogist found this:

https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%89cuyer_(gentilhomme)#Varlets

Could there be any connection between Varlet and Vallet in the etymological sense?

Thanks again,

Enno
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