'Oh happy night, enchanting sight, 'Neath garlands gay and floods of light, Brilliant eyes, balmy sighs, Shaming flow'r and lustre bright.' A report from the Star of 11 January, 1836. The photograph is a late 19th-century carte de visite, one of several in the Library Collection of subjects in fancy dress.
'A good deal of the grimace of a Frenchman'. A short biography from The European Magazine, and London Review, for October 1801; and a less kind opinion of the Admiral, written by Admiral Thomas Byam Martin, a veteran of his campaigns who had fallen out with him, parts of whose account are often regarded as at the least fanciful. Saumarez was prone to depression, however.
Primary concern: Prettiness of self and other girls. Where are all the beaux? Were all the men really either tall or handsome in the 1830s? Obviously not: 'De Beauvoir De Lisle renewed his attentions which I am sorry for, I shall be obliged to draw a line.' A very annoyed Savery Brock bursts a blood vessel. Guernsey has very bad pavements. The photograph from the Library Collection shows a very benevolent-looking Jane in her old age, many years after this diary was written.
From the Library and Museum of Freemasonry.
A selection from the London Chronicle, 1762.
And executioners in general. An incomplete list of the Guernsey hangmen employed by the States, (convicts, for whom the office meant freedom and a small stipend), can be found in the Library: Lists of Bailiffs, Jurats &c, Staff. From L'Independance of 24 January 1818.
'Who lost his life in a humane attempt to save the lives of shipwrecked seamen on the coast of this island.' From L'Independance, March 14th, 1818; followed by excerpts from the sermon given at the Castel church on 15th March 1818 by Nicolas' young contemporary, the Reverend William Guille. The watercolour of the church is dated 1804 and is signed JM (for Dr John MacCulloch).
'But oh! what a tragic story we have to relate.' The bravery of a group of men from the Castel and their untimely deaths on the Gros Rock, March 9th, 1818; Nicolas Dobree, R.N., the two brothers Henry and George Le Tissier, Daniel Nicolle, and Captain Collenette. The photograph above shows the rock. 'Ils ont peri, meme en accomplissant un oeuvre de charite.'
Modernized list of people mentioned in legal cases, from a transcription of p. 223 of Livre des Jugements, Vol. I, in History of the Guernsey Churches scrapbook.
Letters from the Star, April 1891. Blondel and Andros, Brouard, Dumont, and Angel, at St Apolline. St Apolline's Chapel is first mentioned as belonging to Nicolas Henry in 1394; it was then called Notre Dame de la Perelle. The woodcut shows the chapel in use as a barn, from Bellamy's Pictorial Guide of 1843, in the Library collection.
The Priaulx Library can provide copies of most original birth, marriage, or death (BMD) records of anyone whose life event took place in the Bailiwick of Guernsey. (Our Alderney records, however, are incomplete.) Please consult our downloads page for more specific information. This can be done on a look-up basis for enquirers who cannot attend the Library, and will include a copy of the record. The information can be researched by the enquirer in person at the Library, in which case the cost will that of a printout of a scan from microfilm. These costs are subject to revision. Copies of BMD…
Ralph Durand, author and explorer, was Librarian of the Priaulx Library from 1929-1945, and the curator of the Island Museum from 1938-45.