18/5/2022 – Annual General Meeting
Message from Neil Renaud. The Huguenot Society of Australia’s AGM for 2022 was held last Saturday (14 May). Results of the elections for the Committee were: President – Marcia Cameron; Vice-President – Geoff Huard; Secretary – Robert Nash; Treasurer – vacant; Committee – Dennis Dyer (Membership Secretary), Cathie Bartholomew, Neil Renaud, Judith Staveley, Pamela Summers, Robert Wilson. The three proposed amendments to the Constitution were all passed unanimously. The President’s, Secretary’s and Treasurer’s reports were adopted. Other comments – the issue of support for present-day refugees, which was withdrawn from the AGM agenda, may be raised again; wonderful tributes were expressed to our retiring Treasurer, Nick Horspool; our current membership is 165, which is a concern for the new Committee to address.
6/2/2022 – Interesting Internet Article on the Huguenots in London
Message from Neil Renaud. Below is a link to a very interesting article entitled The Huguenots: London’s First Refugees, by Theo Bosanquet (January 2021). Bosanquet is a surname familiar to us in Australia. I hope you find it informative.
11/11/2021 – Upcoming Meeting/Presentation
Message from Neil Renaud. The next meeting of the Society, along with a PowerPoint-assisted presentation, will be held on Saturday 20th November 2021 at 2.00pm (AEDST), at Gordon Baptist Church hall. The meeting/presentation will be held face-to-face AND via Zoom. Details of how to participate via Zoom have been sent to members. Those attending in person must be double COVID-vaccinated. The presentation topic is: The Huguenot Ancestry of the Family of Marnus Labuschagne, Australian Cricketer, presented by Neil Renaud. For those attending in person, the usual afternoon tea will be provided, with the usual small charge. See you there, in person or via Zoom. If you have any questions about using Zoom, please email Neil Renaud on: firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone 0423 157089.
11/11/2021 – A New Tapestry Selling at Half-Price!
Message from Robert Nash. In an effort to promote and sell more copies of the Society’s most recent book A New Tapestry: Huguenot Families in Australia (edited by Robert Nash, 2015), we have decided to offer it to the general public at half price. For just $20 (plus postage and handling) you can obtain this magnificently researched companion volume to the original The Hidden Thread (2009). To make your purchase, please see the “Merchandise” section of this website for details.
6/8/2021 – Upcoming Presentation by “Zoom”
Message from Dennis Dyer, via Neil Renaud. Our next meeting/presentation will be held at 2.00pm on Saturday 21 August 2021. Committee member Mr Robert (Bob) Wilson will give a presentation on The Huguenots of the West Indies. Bob has undertaken an enormous amount of ground-breaking research into this topic, which has previously received little attention. His research has also covered British, French, Dutch and Danish settlements there. A presentation not to be missed. Sadly, due to the current COVID-19 lockdown, the meeting/presentation will NOT be held face-to-face, but will only be available via Zoom. A videorecording of the presentation will subsequently be placed in the Members Only section of this website. Those of you who are on email will have received an invitation to the Zoom meeting. If not, and you would like to know how to participate via Zoom, please email Neil Renaud at email@example.com, and I’ll explain how you can view the meeting/presentation via Zoom. It’s really quite easy. I can email you the link to join the meeting.
29/6/2021 – Huguenot Heritage Church Service Held
Message from Neil Renaud. Our annual Huguenot Heritage Church Service was held on Sunday 20th June, as indicated below, on a cold and rainy day. There was a good attendance. The service was led by our Vice-President, Rev. Dr Geoff Huard, with readings in French and English by members of our Society. An inspiring address was delivered by Archdeacon Terry Dein, and in this regard the text of his address will shortly be placed on this web site, with his permission. Stand by for a notice of where you will find the article.
Update: Below is a link to the text of the address:
11/6/2021 – Huguenot Heritage Church Service
Message from Pamela Summers. Our annual Huguenot Heritage Church Service will be held at St Swithun’s Anglican Church, corner of Telegraph and Merrivale Roads, Pymble, on Sunday 20th June 2021 at 2.00pm. All are welcome to join in this special service commemorating Huguenot history and traditions. The service, with the choir of St Swithun’s Pymble, will be led by the Rev Dr Geoff Huard. It will be in English with some Bible readings and prayers in French. Afternoon tea will follow. We hope to see as many of you as possible there.
30/5/2021 – Annual General Meeting Held
Message from Neil Renaud. The Huguenot Society of Australia’s Annual General Meeting was held at Gordon Baptist Church Hall on Saturday afternoon, 15th May 2021. There was a moderate attendance, with two more participating via Zoom. Following the usual comprehensive reports, those elected to the Committee for 2021-22 were:
President – Marcia Cameron
Vice-President – Geoff Huard
Secretary – Robert Nash
Treasurer – Nick Horspool
Membership Secretary – Dennis Dyer
Committee – Cathie Bartholomew, Neil Renaud, Judith Staveley, Pamela Summers, Robert Wilson
It was noted that Angela Lind did not stand for re-election to the Committee, and her years of service as a Committee member were acknowledged. The following presentation by Dr Matthew Glozier will be separately reported. The videorecording is on the Members Only section of this website.
14/1/2021 – New Book by Robert Nash
Message from Neil Renaud. Robert Nash, our Secretary, has recently edited and published a book on Huguenots in the Channel Islands – A Directory of Huguenot Refugees on the Channel Islands, 1548-1825 (Huguenot Society Quarto Series 63). It has just been released by the Huguenot Society of Great Britain and Ireland and can be purchased from that Society. The link to the order form below has a blurb which explains what the book is about.
5/12/2020 – End of Year News
Message from Neil Renaud. We’ve come to the end of a difficult year, difficult for obvious reasons. For HSA members, the latest Huguenot Times (number 36, Spring/November 2020) has just come out. Great reading – the depth of research shows just how dedicated our people are. Thank you so much to the editor Robert Nash. Robert has also forwarded, via our Membership Secretary Dennis, the latest monthly article for members. The “Members Only” news page will have more details. Members will note that membership renewals for 2021 are due at the end of this month (December). It’s a good opportunity for those of you who AREN’T members to join ($40 per year), and get the benefits of HSA membership.
31/10/2020 – Latest Article for Members
Message from Neil Renaud. The latest reprinted article from a previous issue of Huguenot Times was sent to HSA members today, and it’s another great one from Robert Nash – The Huguenots of Scotland. Were there Huguenot connections to Scotland, you might ask? Yes, and you can read this fascinating article to discover the connections, including Scottish communities in France!
22/10/2020 – Upcoming Events and Annual General Meeting
Message from Neil Renaud. Huguenot Society of Australia members are asked to look at the “News for Members” section of the Members Only page, to note some important recent decisions regarding our next meeting/presentation and Annual General Meeting.
22/10/2020 – Latest Articles for Members (October)
Message from Neil Renaud. Earlier this month the latest articles for the interest of members were sent out by Dennis Dyer. There were two articles, both on the St Bartholomew’s Day Massacre of 1572 – one by Dan Graves and the other by Dr Matthew Glozier (from Huguenot Times, no. 6, November 2005). The events of that day and subsequent days reignited the religious wars in France, which continued for another 26 years, until the Edict of Nantes (1598). The articles are fascinating, but horrifying.
20/9/2020 – Who were the Huguenots?
Message from Dennis Dyer. Robert Nash has kindly forwarded the website below that may be of interest to you. It is a 44 minute long BBC broadcast in which several people are interviewed about the Huguenots, their origin, history and migration as the original “refugees” to England, Switzerland, Holland and Germany. It discusses their experiences in England and Ireland and further migration to South Africa and the USA. It’s two programs with a short BBC News session in the middle from which you will learn something about Australia. I have listened to the program and found it very interesting and something that your friends, not necessarily of Huguenot descent, may like to hear. Settle down with a cup of tea/coffee and turn it on.
3/9/2020 – Tour de France Enters Huguenot Territory Tonight
Message from Dennis Dyer/Neil Renaud. This is to advise that today’s (Thursday 3 September) stage of the Tour de France travels from Le Teil to Mt Aigoual, in the Cevennes, an area of great significance to Huguenots. After the Revocation of the “Edict of Nantes” in 1685, there followed years of strife in the Cevennes during which many of the Huguenot villages were destroyed, and the people massacred. The “Camisards” led a long running Guerilla campaign to protect themselves against the catholic royalists and Protestantism was never entirely defeated during the 104 years it was outlawed. Many towns and villages still have a “temple” (Protestant Church), such as Anduze, Ganges and Le Vigan through which the Tour de France will pass. Mt Aigoual (1567m), at which the stage will end, has great significance and is one of the locations mentioned in the Huguenot Hymn “La Cevenole” which is sung at Huguenot gatherings, including our annual Church Service.
It will be transmitted on SBS from 9.30pm to 1.15am. You may wish to record it in order to view the relevant area towards the end.
2/9/2020 – Latest Article for Members
Message from Neil Renaud/Robert Nash/Dennis Dyer. HSA members are advised that the latest article from a previous issue of Huguenot Times has just been emailed/sent. It’s another great one – “Where There’s a Will …”, by Robert Nash. It was published in Huguenot Times no. 11 (May 2008), pp. 6-9. HSA members may go to the “News” tab on the members-only page of this website, for further details provided by Robert Nash. Another good reason (I keep saying this) to join the HSA.
11/8/2020 – Meeting and Presentation Held by Zoom
Message from Neil Renaud. Our first meeting/presentation since February was successfully held last Saturday afternoon (8th August) via Zoom . 22 people joined in, including a few from interstate. The presentation by Marcia Cameron was entitled The Reverend Dr Everard Digges la Touche: martyr or headstrong fool? The event was successfully recorded and is now on the “members only” section of this website – members can log in and view it – just another good reason to become a member of the HSA.
3/8/2020 – A Great Website for Those With London Ancestors
Message from Stuart Richmond via Dennis Dyer. Stuart has found an interesting website for family history research. While it is not specifically “Huguenot”, it will be of great interest to those with London ancestors – http://www.pubwiki.co.uk.
17/7/2020 – New “News For Members” Link
Message from Neil Renaud. On our Protected: Members Only page, there is now a separate “News for Members” link, containing current news for members only. This will generally be for discussion topics or matters where members may not wish to have their information/comments made public. The link is right at the top of the Members Only page. Have a look and find out about the proposed “Q and A” session.
17/7/2020 – Meeting/Presentation on 8th August Now via Zoom
Message from Neil Renaud on behalf of the HSA Committee. Due to continuing COVID-19 issues, the Committee has decided not to proceed with the face-to-face meeting/presentation on 8th August. Instead, we are pleased to say that this meeting/presentation will now be held online using Zoom technology. Information on how to participate in the meeting, including viewing the presentation The Enigmatic Reverend Digges La Touche (to be delivered by Marcia Cameron), will be forwarded to HSA members shortly. For those unable to participate via Zoom, the videorecording of the presentation will be placed on the “members only” section of this website in the usual way. From a technical point-of view this is an exciting initiative and we hope it all works!
2/7/2020 – New Article for Members – Galley Slaves
Message from Neil Renaud. The second in our series of monthly articles for HSA Members has just been forwarded – The Huguenot Galley Slaves, by Robert Nash, reprinted from Huguenot Times, no 20, November 2012. It is a fascinating, if horrifying, account. I actually have a copy of Jean Marteilhe’s book, referred to in the article. Once again, these articles are a great reason to become a member of the Huguenot Society of Australia.
26/6/2020 – Spitalfields Article Elicits Response
Message from Neil Renaud, with permission from Sue A’Beckett. We have received some interesting comments from Sue A’Beckett in Melbourne regarding the recent article sent to members on Spitalfields. The article reflects the experience of Sue’s (Vautier) family, who journeyed from Normandy to Canterbury, then Spitalfields. Many of those who ended up as weavers there may have had no previous weaving experience in their earlier lives in France. Sue would love to have attended the 2006 conference in Normandy, but at that time had never heard of the Huguenot Society. She expresses her thanks to Robert and Dennis for sending this article to members.
25/6/2020 – Meeting/Presentation May Be Held 8th August (see more recent post above – 17/7/2020)
Message from Neil Renaud. It is intended that, subject to the COVID-19 situation continuing to alleviate, we will resume holding Huguenot Society meetings/presentations on Saturday 8th August at Gordon Baptist Church. The presentation topic will be The Enigmatic Reverend Digges La Touche, delivered by Marcia Cameron. This is a very welcome development, but please await further confirmation and details of this event.
14/6/2020 – Upcoming Zoom French Studies Conference
Message from Neil Renaud. We have been advised by Robin Gwynn of an upcoming Zoom virtual conference on French historical studies (“France and Beyond”), which includes sessions with a Huguenot slant. Anyone can freely attend online. It will be held from 8th to 31st July – lots of sessions over a 4-week period. A document with full details can be emailed to anyone interested (contact firstname.lastname@example.org).
14/6/2020 – Who Do You Think You Are? – Huguenot Ancestry?
Message from Neil Renaud. You may have seen the episode of Who Do You Think You Are? on 2nd June, dealing with Cameron Daddo. He discovered his “de Carteret” Norman ancestry from Guernsey/Jersey. Our Secretary Robert Nash noticed that, among his list of direct ancestors, was a “Le Page”, which is a definite Huguenot name from the Channel Islands, so it’s possible that Cameron has some Huguenot ancestry. I wonder if he has an awareness of or interest in that?
1/6/2020 – Monthly Articles for Members Commence
Message from Neil Renaud. The Committee held another meeting/conversation using “Zoom” technology on 20th May, and one of the outcomes was to confirm the intention of sending monthly articles, accessed from previous issues of “Huguenot Times”, to Society Members. The first one went out today – “The Silkweavers of Spitalfields”, by Robert Nash (from Huguenot Times, no. 6 (October 2005). Arrangements are being made to convey this to Members who do not have email. This is another great reason to become a Member of the Society. It’s also a good reason for Members to start receiving things by email – it makes things so much easier for us.
1/6/2020 – The Story of Europe (continued)
Message from Neil Renaud. Alas, the third and final part of this series on SBS last Saturday did not cover the Huguenots. It was nevertheless fascinating, and quite thought provoking in its conclusions regarding the underlying factors of European “greatness”.
28/5/2020 – “La Cevenole”, as you’ve never heard it before
Message from Neil Renaud. Click on the link below. Scroll down a bit, and click on the arrow after “Ecouter le morceau”. If it works, enjoy the song.
24/5/2020 – The Story of Europe
Message from Neil Renaud. I watched a very interesting programme on SBS on Saturday afternoon – episode 2 of The Story of Europe, presented by Dr Christopher Clark, an Australian. It covered the religious history of Europe from about 300AD to 1648AD – dealt with the late Roman Empire, the Catholic Church, the Jews, the Orthodox Church, Irish monasteries and missionaries, the mixing of Celtic and Christian traditions, the Muslim Caliphate in Spain, the Crusades, and the Protestant Reformation – Luther and Calvin. I hope that in episode 3, next Saturday afternoon, it may cover the Huguenots, but I don’t know. You can actually watch the previous episodes on SBS on Demand. You need to create a login, but it’s free.
24/5/2020 – Searching for Huguenots in Ireland?
Message from Robert Nash, passed on from Dr Matthew Glozier. Dr Matthew Glozier, who would have given us a talk on Marshal Schomberg at our postponed AGM on 9th May, has announced the setting up of his website https://matthewglozier.com/. This has full details of his books on Huguenot soldiers which will be of interest to many of our members, particularly those with Irish Huguenot ancestry. They are: War, Religion & Service – Huguenot Soldiering 1685-1713; The Huguenot Soldiers of William of Orange & the Glorious Revolution of 1688 and Marshal Schomberg, 1615-1690. This website is definitely worth checking out.
24/5/2020 – Reply to de Berry Family …
Reply from Bob Wilson. Peter, one of the questions that you asked was whether there were any of the Berry Huguenots in Australia. I cannot answer that fully, but can add to Robert’s reply. As far as I can determine, the name Berry in Australia comes from a pioneering Scottish family. That family does not have Huguenot ancestry. They were from Fife, Scotland and settled in the Shoalhaven District in the 1820s with land grants from the Colonial Governor. The New South Wales town Berry is named after the first settler Alexander Berry. The South Australian town Berry is derived from an aboriginal word. Best of luck in your research.
24/5/2020 – Reply to de Berry Family …
Reply from Robert Nash (Secretary, HSA). Hello Peter Holland. The problem with the name Berry is that it is one of those names which occur on both sides of the Channel – it can be a French name but it can also be an English name. So the only way you can solve this problem is to do some genealogical spadework, working back from what you know. The name does occur in the Huguenot records for London: the Huguenot Surname Index CD-ROM (purchasable from our website) has it in volumes 33, 5, 11, 18, 21, 26, 32, 39 & 10. Those are all London, except for 5 which is Canterbury. However, my surname dictionaries tell me it is also a fairly common English name in Lancashire, for example. What you need to do is work backwards from this Keith de Berry and see what you can find out. Websites like ancestry.com and findmypast.com could be useful here, though in these corona-virus times access to public libraries and your local genealogical society is not possible. I couldn’t find any instances of ‘de Berry’ or ‘Deberry’ in the Huguenot records, which tempts me to think this could have been added at a later date by someone wishing to ‘Frenchify’ their name. Remember that the English are terrible snobs, and moving to Australia in the 19th cent gave people a fine opportunity to create a genealogy which would enhance their social status. On the other hand, it may be genuine. As a paid-up member of our society you have the right to contact me directly on email (email@example.com) and I can help you further. All the best.
18/5/2020 – Reply to de Berry Family …
Reply from Neil Renaud. Peter, if I were researching this, I would want some more information – what was Betty’s surname/maiden name, what was the year and place of her marriage to Keith, do you have the names of Keith’s parents, was this the Reverend Canon Keith de Berry? Here’s a link, which may or may not be relevant. https://www.genealogy.com/forum/surnames/topics/deberry/334/.
15/5/2020 – de Berry Family: Can you help?
Message from Peter Holland. My mother’s sister Betty married Keith de Berry just before WW2 I think & they had 4 (now adult) children, 2 male & 2 female. The cousins live in England, but the parents died years ago. I do believe that Keith de Berry was of Huguenot stock but have no way to prove it. I travelled on the French Huguenot tour of 2010, and if I remember rightly, I caught a glimpse of the name Berry in the Loire valley region. Of course, the name meant little to other travellers, and we did not stop there alas, from my perspective. Have you heard of anybody called de Berry or Berry in Australia? Is so, I would be interested to get into contact with him or her.
13/5/2020 – New picture – what is it?
Message from Neil Renaud. You may have noticed in the last week or two a new graphic at the top of our web page. What is it, you ask? It comes from an engraving titled French Huguenot refugees landing at Dover in 1685, after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. It was done by Godefroy Durand (1832-1896), an illustrator who worked in France and Great Britain. It was published in The Graphic, a British weekly illustrated newspaper, on 24 October 1885, on the occasion of the bicentenary of the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Here is the full picture.
12/5/2020 – What are you researching?
Message from Neil Renaud/Bob Wilson. We have recently been reading stories in the Huguenot Times on some of the lesser-discussed places where we find Huguenots, such as Hungary, Germany, Surinam and Jamaica. At the same time, some of you may be researching other lesser-known areas, which you’d like to tell us about. Bob Wilson, for example, has been researching the Falmouth Parish Registers during the current lockdown, and is finding some fascinating things – Huguenot ministers, and a Huguenot congregation, in Falmouth. Bob will report on these discoveries once his research is completed.
Meanwhile, do you have some research you’d like to tell us about? We can put it on this “News” tab to share with other Members, giving them the opportunity to perhaps offer comments or advice. If you’ve got something to share, just submit your message to Bob Wilson at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 405/93 Brompton Road, Kensington NSW 2033, and we will ensure that it appears on our web site.
11/5/2020 – Who Do You Think You Are?
Message from Neil Renaud. Many of you will be fans of the series “Who Do You Think You Are?” You’ll be thrilled to know that the new Australian series starts NEXT WEEK. Here is the programme timetable:
7/5/2020 – Question – Should I challenge the Huguenot Society of America?
Message from Neil Renaud. Those of you who saw or have viewed my presentation on 8 February may recall that I commented on the following graphic found on the internet. I argued that these people are NOT Huguenots – they were recruited by the Prussian king in 1766 to help reform the Prussian taxation system (the Regie). They were not religious refugees at all. Now, I have just noticed that this graphic is prominently on the home page of the Huguenot Society of America. Should I inform the Huguenot Society of America of this error, or just “let it be”? Your thoughts are welcome – email: email@example.com.
2/5/2020 – Huguenot Times
Message from Neil Renaud. I received my Huguenot Times (May 2020 issue) yesterday and it is a great read – fantastic articles by Robert Wilson, Anne Both and Robert Nash. The book review indicates a book well worth reading. I can personally support Robert’s tips on Geneanet and the French Archives-Departementales – I have used both resources extensively in my own family research.
28/4/2020 – Impact of COVID-19
Message from Neil Renaud. You will all be aware of the impacts of the current COVID-19 pandemic on the world. Our Society has of course been similarly impacted – events and meetings cancelled until further notice. I’m in the process of setting up a facility for Society members to communicate their experiences with fellow members, via a blog, or weblog. I’ll keep you up to date with progress. Meanwhile, please follow this “News” site.