The French Family



French 2

Possibly the Jersey connection is via a maternal line.


The earliest records I have seen:



In the Ruck files:

Emanuel and Edmund French have been transcribed. It is possible both are Emanuel I guess.

October 7, 1719 and August 28, 1719

To Emanuel French




Henry Willicot half




Edmund French half




From RF:

Phillip French was the brother of Arthur French. They were sons of Emanuel French and were Mariners. I think is that the Frenches were from the villages of Lustleigh or Widecombe in Devon. There is an Emanuel born 1667 in Lustleigh.

Name Emmanuele French
Gender Male
Christening Date 15 Dec 1667
Father’s Name William French
Mother’s Name Mary

….later some concern that he was a little old for his spot in the tree.

Arthur Holdsworth is mentioned in the will of Phillip French as a possible  guardian for his children. Mr. Holdsworth was a very successful Dartmouth/Newfoundland merchant.

Emanuel married a Rachel Peste in 1710

French 1652

The French Family Site:


My Harbour Grace line possibly goes:

Thomas French b 1740 & Anne (earliest in HG?)

Robert b 1768 & Sarah (no record of birth)

Charles b 1789 son of Robert marries Mary Foley 1811

Francis (Frances???) of Charles b 1815 marries William Brown 1836


Seale 0144 Capt. Samuel Youlden to C. Hayne? 10 Jul. 1763 H.P. I. 101

Arrived Pittyharbour 21 June, very bad catch:20 sail of vessels looking for capeling which came very late. Sold 400 Quentals of fish to Mr. Mercy’s ship of London, partly in exchange for salt. Received pot of butter & ham by Capt. French. Capt. Y. had a good banter to draw on.

DHRG No.100294


16 Nov. 1758 Merchants of Dartmouth Lords of Trade Petition about the hardships the trade has suffered during the war and demand better convoys and not to impress fishermen in the Navy. Signed by approx. 15 merchants (Sparke, Holdsworth, Leigh, Hine, Cooper, French, Newman, etc.)



20 Aug 1763

Gov. Thomas Graves, Michael Gill, Esq. Commissioner of the Admiralty, and Edward Langman, Esq. Justice. (St. John’s)

Court Proceedings:

Principal merchants and other traders (12 named) appeared before the court to present a petition regarding distribution of the proceeds of the sale of goods. They would like the Conditional Bond to be cancelled. Also, they had goods detained in the garrison by Colonial Amherst, and would like certificates so they can receive payments. The money and accounts should be given to three merchants who will distribute it so long as people can prove their right to the money.


20 Aug 1763

Gov. Thomas Graves (St. John’s)


Notice that Bully, French, and Thomas have the money from the sale of average goods abovementioned. They will examine the claims of those who can prove they had goods taken. Claims must be submitted by the date stated.


20 Aug 1763

Gov. Thomas Graves (St. John’s)

French, Brooks, and Hayes, Agents

Discussing the regulations above. Ordered to close those accounts immediately and deliver them with the balance to Bully, French, and Thomas.


20 Aug 1763

Gov. Thomas Graves (St. John’s)

Bully, French, and Thomas (St. John’s)

Same topic as abovementioned. Directions to receive the accounts and balances, to give proper discharges to the Agents, and to take care of the distributions.

Arthur French of merchant of Dartmouth

Name: Arthur French
Spouse’s Name: Judith Palmer
Event Date: 01 May 1739
Event Place: Townstal Or St Clement,Dartmouth,Devon,England
Name: Arther French
Gender: Male
Christening Date: 10 Dec 1717
Father’s Name: Emaniell French

I think Arthur French Jr became a successful privateer.

19 Sept 1757

Gov. Edwards (St. John=s)

Court Proceedings:

-Petition of Arthur French, William Stook, and Roger Bodgood requesting that several plantations be sold in order to discharge some of the debt owed to them.

-John Jerrard requested leave in order to get affairs in order to deal with debt he owes.

-Mortgage of Richard Middleton to Richard and Robert Newman was read. Issues with the boundaries must first be dealt with.  

11 Aug 1757

Gov. Edwards (St. John=s)

Justices of the Peace at St. John= s, Petty Harbour and Consumption Bay

Notice to assist Arthur French in obtaining the debt owed to his client, Arthur Holdesworth.

29 Sept 1755

Gov. Dorrill (St. John=s)

Andrew Winson

Ordered to pay the debt owed to Arthur French