My first confirmed French ancestors! They were French Huguenots. To my knowledge, I believe they are my only French ancestors. Please be sure to read the quite entertaining and amusing description found below by Madam Knight about when she visited and stayed at my ancestor’s Strang’s Tavern and Inn.
Daniel Streing/Strang, Sr., was born in 1655 in Gien, Loiret, France. (Gien is on the Loire River and is 50 miles from Orléans). Daniel Strang, Sr. attended the Protestant Academy of Geneva, Switzerland. Daniel and his brother, Jacques, were sent to Paris by their father, Henri, to learn the wholesale wine trade in the cellars of Michel and Guillaume Hubert, Michel being a maternal uncle by marriage. (2)
Archaeological excavations have shown that Gien was a trading post for farmers and blacksmiths in pre-historic times, and that a town was founded in Roman times. As a Protestant town, Gien suffered greatly during the Religious Wars, with the looting of the churches and clergy being hunted down. (1) Sadly, much of Gien was destroyed during the Second World War. The town was bombed by the Luftwaffe, who aimed to destroy the town’s bridge to prevent the French Army from retreating. The bombardment created a huge fire which completely destroyed over four hundred buildings, including the town’s two main churches. The town was rebuilt after the war. Gien is popular as a tourist destination and is known for its grapes (vineyards) and goat cheese.
The surname is listed originally as Steing in records in England and America but slowly became Strang.
Daniel and the others were Huguenots, which were French Protestants who held to the Reformed – Calvinist or Presbyterian traditions of Protestantism. Daniel and Charlotte were members of the Reformed French Church.
Daniel Steing, Sr. was the son of Henri Strengs / Strangs / Lestrange and Marie Babault.
Daniel Streing, Sr. and Charlotte Marie Lemaistre were married 21 August 1680 at The Chateau de Chamerolles, at Lorret, France, it was one of the few churches where Protestants of Huguenot or similar descent were able to marry. Their first child was born in France. The remainder of their children were born in America.
Charlotte Marie Lemaistre was also born in Giens, Loire, France and was the daughter of Jean Lemaistre and Charlotte Mariette.
Daniel Strang, Blaise Thibou, Samuel LeMaistre, Guillaum and Michel Hubert were among the first of what was to number 500,000 Frenchmen who forsook their properties and fled the realm rather than convert to Catholicism or be tortured and killed. Daniel fled to London from Paris in a wine cask aboard a Seine River barge and occupied himself there as a merchant until 1688, when he migrated to America. (2)
Daniel and Charlotte immigrated to Boston, Massachusetts and soon after went to New York City, New York.
Daniel Strang, Sr. is listed as one of the residents of New Rochelle, New York in 1698 and is listed as a Lieutenant of Infantry.
From the Rye, New York history site:
The center of Rye moved from the Long Island Sound area to the King’s Highway, aided by Strang’s Tavern at what is now the corner of the Post Road and Rectory Street and the Square House. Both taverns were the center of colonial life, providing local residents and travelers with food, drink, shelter, entertainment, news, and politics. (2)
From the book Chronicle of a Border Town: History of Rye, Westchester County, New York:
In the village itself, ‘Strang’s tavern’ was the ancient public house. A portion of the original building still standing on the southeast corner of the post-road and Rectory Street.
Madam Knight of Boston gives an amusing description of her entertainment at this inn, in the course of her journey on horseback in 1704 from that city to New York: —
‘From Norowalk we hasted towards Rye, walking and leading our horses near a mile together, up a prodigious high hill; and so riding till about nine at night ; and there arrived and took up our lodgings at an ordinary inn a French family kept. Here being very hungry, I desired a fricasee, which the Frenchman undertakeing mannaged so contrary to my notion of cookery, that I hastned to bed superless : being shewd the way up the pair of stairs which had such a narrow passage that I had almost stopt by the bulk of my body. But arriving at my apartment found it to be a little Lento chamber, furnisht amongst other rubbish with a high bedd and a low one, a long table, a bench and a bottomless chair. . . . My poor bones compalined bitterly, not being used to such lodgings ; and so did the man who was with us ; and poor I made but one grone, which was from the time I went to bed to the time I riss, which was about three in the morning. Setting up by the fire till light, and having discharged our ordinary, which was as dear as if we had had far better fare, we took our leave of Monsier, and about seven in the morn came to New Rochell, a French town, where we had a good breakfast, and in the strength of that, about an how’r before sunsett, got to York.’ (3)
Daniel died 2 years after Madam Knight’s visit to his inn. His wife Charlotte kept and ran the inn for several years. Both Daniel and Charlotte died in Rye, Westchester County, New York and both are buried in the Strang Burial Ground.
In Charlotte’s will she leaves her wedding clothes to her 3 daughters. I could only hope that one of her descendants still has them. Part of her will: gives her wedding clothes to her three daughters, Clorinda, wife of Samuel Purdy; Charlotte, wife of Roger Park, and Mary Prudence, wife of John Budd.
My direct line:
- Daniel Strang (Streing), Sr. and Charlotte Marie Lemaistre.
- Mary Prudence Strang and John Budd (he was the son of Joseph L. Budd and Sarah Underhill).
- Elijah Budd and Hannah Ursula “Ursty” Sine (she was the daughter of Nicholas Sine (Sayn) and Urseltje Maulin, both were born in Germany).
- Mary Budd and Solomon Palmer (DNA has strongly pointed to he being the son of Abraham Palmer and Abigail Buel (Bull)).
- Floyd Palmer and Barbara Wolf (she was the daughter of Peter Wolf and Catherine ____. Both born in Pennsylvania but with German roots).
- John Palmer and Mary Ann Spotts (she was the daughter of David Spatz and Hannah Hafer, both they and their parents were born in Pennsylvania, but all had German roots).
- Susan Palmer and John Davis Kennedy (He was the son of John Kennedy and Jane Williams).
- Abraham Kennedy and Mary Elizabeth Price (She was the daughter of James Price and Julia Ann Meteer/Mateer) – my great-grandparents.
Please see my blog My Kennedy, Graham, and Murray Ancestors from Ballintoy, Antrim, Northern Ireland for information about my Kennedy ancestors. I will be writing new blog posts about several of my ancestors listed above in the future.
A special thanks to my sister Linda; my niece, my brother’s daughter, Elisabeth; my grand-niece, my sister’s granddaughter, Bethany; my cousin William; and my Kennedy/Price cousins Laura and her father John, for it is with all of us being DNA matches to other known Budd and Strang cousins and descendants that helped confirm our descendancy from Daniel Strang, Sr. and Charlotte Marie Lemaistre.
- The Three Gs: Gien, Grapes and Goats’ cheese (hotelsafloat.com)
- Brief History — Rye Historical Society (ryehistory.org)
- Baird, Charles Washington. (1871). Chronicle of a Border Town: History of Rye, Westchester County, New York, 1660-1870, Including Harrison and the White Plains Till 1788. New York, NY: Anson D. F. Randolph and Company.
Baird, Charles W., Rev. History of the Huguenot Emigration to America (Dodd, Mead & Co., New York, 1885). Vol. II, p 96.
Baird, Charles W., Rev. “L’Estrange.” The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record (New York Genealogical and Biographical Society, 1870-). 1871, Vol. 2, pp 179-186.
Strange, Charles Alfred. “The Strangs of Westchester”. The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record (New York Genealogical and Biographical Society, 1870-), Vol. 98, Oct 1967, pp 199-204.
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