THE PENNSYLVANIA LEFEVRES

 

ABRAHAM LEFEVRE (of 1632) - A French Huguenot who was martyred, together with his wife and six of his children, after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685.

 

Another son named ISAAC (born 1669) - Escaped death at this time but was unable to save anything except his father's Bible, which he had with him when he settled near Strasburg, Pennsylvania in 1712.

 

 

INTRODUCTION TO LEFEVRE RECORDS

 

To every right-minded person the honorable lives of his ancestors is an incentive to emulate their noble deeds. Macauley, the great English historian, said: "Those who have no pride in the deeds of a remote ancestry will hardly be likely to accomplish anything worthy to be remembered by the remote posterity."

Nobility of descent should always be followed by the nobility of ascent. Nobility of character, especially Christian character, is within the reach of all. LeFevres can look back to ancestors of the highest type of nobility. Of Andrew LeFevre of 1604 is recorded by his Huguenot pastor: "They (Andrew LeFevre and his wife) were the best people among us." Another person wrote of them: "Having walked before God in Christian simplicity and performed their duty, they both died at a good old age." Andrew's son Isaac, of 1648, suffered severe persecution by the Roman Catholics for seventeen years, because of his loyalty to Christ his Saviour. He died in a dungeon in a fort in 1702. Abraham LeFevre, of 1632, another son and a faithful Huguenot, with his wife and three sons and three daughters were killed by the Roman Catholics in 1685, after the revoking of the Edict of Nantes, because of the nobility of their character.

Abraham's son, Isaac LeFevre of 1669, our American ancestor, at the age of sixteen, alone escaped "with difficulty" as he himself stated, from being killed along with the rest of the family. All that he saved out of his wrecked home was his father's Bible, published in Geneva in 1608. This he cherished and preserved through all his flights from France, through Bavaria, Holland and England, until he made him home in Strasburg Township, Lancaster County, Pa., in 1712. He had it by his side until in his eighty-third year, when his body was laid to rest. It is now in the library of the Lancaster County Historical Society, Lancaster, Pa.

A boy of sixteen who prized his father's Bible above everything else to save from his wrecked home, LeFevres are not ashamed of. And he was not ashamed of his ancestral name, which he wrote correctly, "LeFevre," as did his sons and grandsons. We should honor such Christian ancestors, by at least writing their name correctly as they wrote it, in accordance with linguistic rules, the only way family names can be preserved uniform through many generations.

Our noble Christian ancestors did not live in vain. They did not deem it their duty to write history, but they made history. In this wilderness they won homes for us all, and have made Lancaster County famous. These records will help us to keep them in remembrance.

Now, in my ninety-fourth year, I recall that when a boy of fifteen, as I heard the names of my ancestors and relatives mentioned, I wrote them down. By the time I was eighteen I had made a small chart, or as they were called, "Family Tree," of about one hundred and twenty names of LeFevres, descendants of Isaac LeFevre of 1669. Now I have over forty-five hundred names from almost every State in the Union and about sixteen thousand records. I include the consorts, but not the collaterals, as this is strictly a LeFevre record. An Index of the LeFevres and also another of their consorts has been prepared.

I have secured records that now could not be obtained. I have talked with a LeFevre who lived before the Revolutionary War, less than twenty-five years from the death of Isaac LeFevre of 1669. I have secured records from old Bibles that later were destroyed in buildings that were burned. Records on old grave-stones I secured that now are obliterated. Many of the sixteen thousand records now in this book would have been lost in oblivion if I had not secured them.

The descendants of Isaac LeFevre of 1669 seem to be well distributed all over the United States, except the New England and the Southern States. I tried to get them all, and it has cost much time, labor and expense to gather them together. My only reward has been my success with such an exceptionally complete Family Record.

If anyone is disappointed in not finding their name here, or if perchance your name is mis-spelled or your dates incorrect, I trust you will pardon me. I have called on or written to some one in every family group whose address I could get, often enclosing a printed form easy to fill out and a self-addressed stamped envelope for a reply. I have called on many persons by auto. On one trip just after LeFevres, I traveled over two thousand miles in seven states.

It has been a great pleasure and satisfaction to have the cooperation of many who were formerly strangers, who now are cherished friends. I would like here to thank all by name for your assistance. But if I name one, I should name all. So to each one, as you recall your prompt response to my requests for names and dates of yourselves and relatives, I extend my sincere thanks.

 

George Newton LeFevre_

 

 

A FURTHER WORD, FROM THE CO-COMPILER

 

This record came into my hands several years after the death of the compiler. He had spent many long hard years of labor compiling the records of the earlier generations, but those of the present living generations were still quite incomplete. Besides traveling a good deal through the eastern and eastern central states, at the age of eighty he visited the country of France, where he gathered much information regarding our French ancestry. At one time he had contacted some LeFevres in the West but could not attach them to any one in his record. After a period of seven years he finally located someone who gave him the connecting link, and these Western folk turned out to be the descendents of his grandfather's brother.

After receiving the record, I immediately began to contact by telephone the one hundred LeFevres listed in our local city directory. This took about five months, and to my surprise I discovered that I was related to all the LeFevres in Lancaster city and county except one. Then I began to reach out. After another year I had written approximately 1400 letters, and had located relatives in Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Washington, D.C. Outside the States, I found them to be living in Alaska, Panama, Chile, Brazil, Turkey, and China.

These contacts have enabled me to add to that which George Newton LeFevre had, the names of 500 LeFevres, 525 LeFevre Consorts, and 2400 dates. The record now contains the names of 3477 LeFevres and 2142 LeFevre consorts. I have endeavored to record the information given me just as accurately as possible. However, I trust you will excuse any errors which may have occurred, as I was often working on a hundred or more families at the same time.

This has been a thrilling, never-to-be forgotten experience. I have made acquaintance either by telephone, letter or in person with more than 1000 of my cousins. To many of you, it seems as if we have been friends for many years. Your kind and prompt response to my inquiries has been very much appreciated, for without your help I could never have completed your family record. And so to each one of you who have so graciously helped me, I want again to say, "Thank you."

 

Franklin D. LeFevre

 

 

" 'Tis news I have for you, my lad,

News to make your heart feel glad,

News to make you dance with glee;

It's all about your ancestry."

 

(Submitted by John J. LeFevre, New York City.)

 

 

On the opposite page is a picture of the Bible which belonged to Abraham LeFevre born 1632. According to a notation written with pen and ink near the top of page 1, it was printed in Geneva in 1608. The size of this Bible is approximately nine and quarter inches from top to bottom, six and a quarter across, and four and a quarter thick.

When Abraham and his family were martyred in 1685 the Bible was saved from destruction by his son Isaac, the only survivor.

On this page is written with pen and ink the names and birth-dates of Isaac's six children.

 

 

EARLY HISTORY OF OUR FAMILY

 

In the northeastern part of France was situated the beautiful Province of Alsace, with its magnificent city of Strasburg, founded by the Romans near the beginning of the Christian Era. The neighboring Province of Lorraine was formally ceded to France by the Treaty of Bonn in 921, and became a part of Alsace. It was the home of Mengen LeFevre, of 1510. It was subsequently held by many kings and dukes until 1477 when Charles of Burgundy, who then held it, lost his life at the battle of Nancy, Jan. 4, 1477. After this, Lorraine merged more and more into the stream of French history. At the death of Rene II (1508), his eldest son Anthony, who had been educated in the court of France, inherited Lorraine with its dependencies. He became known as the "Good Duke of Lorraine," and was the one who granted the Coat-of-Arms to Mengen LeFevre, of 1510. In 1525 the country was invaded by German insurgents, and Lutheranism began to spread in the towns. At this time the LeFevres may have become Protestants.

The Cost-of-Arms of Mengen LeFevre of 1510, granted by the Royal Duke Antoine, the "Good Duke of Lorraine," was registered in 1543. The following is the official description, as translated from the French: Blue field, Three Crosses, re-crossed, of Gold, so constructed as to permit being driven, -- Stag head of Silver. (It was traced by R. G. LeFevre, of Cleveland, Ohio.)

In 1552, just after the LeFevre Coat-of-Arms was registered, war broke out by the Elector of Saxony and some German princes against the German Emperor Charles V, and Lorraine was overrun by the Emperor's troops. Then the LeFevres may have fled to the French province of Nivernois, southwest of Strasburg, and over one hundred miles from Lorraine. Here in the shelter of the Vosges mountains where they meet the ridge running southeast from Paris, in the valley of the river Yonne, near Chatel-Chinon, the LeFevres made their home until 1685. By Geo. N. LeFevre.

About the middle of the sixteenth century the French Protestants were nicknamed Huguenots by the Roman Catholics. In 1562 a struggle began between the Huguenots and the government, for religious freedom. This was the beginning of the eight religious wars which covered more than thirty years.

On Sunday, August 14, 1572, when a large number of Huguenots had gathered in Paris for the wedding of one of their chiefs, the Roman Catholics made an attack and killed several thousand. This was known as the Massacre of St. Bartholomew. Massacres were ordered in other parts of France, and all together seventy thousand perished. The Pope sent congratulations to Catherine de Medici, the queen regent, and both felt that they were finished with the Huguenots. But the Huguenots rallied and fought on. (From "The Growth of the Christian Church" by Nichols.)

Catherine de Medici ruled her son, Charles IX, with an iron hand. He became very discouraged and despondent, and died in 1574, being only twenty-four years of age. His brother Henry III then ascended the throne, but disaster befell him in 1589 when he was stabbed by a monk. Being childless, he called for Henry, King of Navarre, and declared him as his successor to the throne of France.

This man was crowned as Henry IV. Being a friend of the Huguenots he did much to aid them and to lessen their persecution. In April of 1598 he issued the famous Edict of Nantes, which put an end to the religious wars for a short time.

Henry IV met his death at the hand of an assassin on May 14, 1610. His son Prince Louis being only a child, Henry's wife Maria de Medici, was regent queen. She became interested in Cardinal Richelieu and they governed young Louis until he took the throne as Louis XIII in 1617.

Persecutions gradually began again, and many Huguenots endeavoring to flee were pursued and killed. Cardinal Richelieu was made prime minister of France and became very powerful. He expressed his desire to break the Huguenot party that was opposing the Pope, and to completely wipe out the new Reformed religion.

Louis XIII died in 1643, and the throne passed to his son Louis XIV, who turned out to be one of the most cruel rulers of recent times. (From Judge Edgar O. LeFevre's Family History.)

In 1666 a new set of Regulations, comprising Fifty-nine Articles, was issued, the provisions of which so invaded all the rights of humanity that they evoked a remonstrance from several Protestant Sovereigns in whose continued friendship Louis XIV was interested. This had some effect, and in 1669 several of the most inhuman Articles were revoked and others were modified. (Stapleton, p.15.)

The Regulations of 1666 was the occasion of the first emigration of the Huguenots, and in a short time thousands of the better class had sought refuge in foreign lands. Louis XIV, whose immoralities had greatly scandalized his court, professed in 1676 to have reformed, and in order to signalize his devotion to the Roman Catholic church undertook anew the complete destruction of Protestant Christianity. This was the beginning of the end.

On October 18, 1685, Louis XIV signed the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. The Huguenots were not allowed to hold public offices any longer. Protestant marriages were declared illegal. Pastors were ordered to leave the country in fifteen days. Parents could no longer instruct their children in the Reformed faith, but were compelled, under heavy penalty, to have them baptized and instructed by the priests. They were forbidden to emigrate, and those who had done so must return in four months or suffer the confiscation of their property. Churches and records were destroyed. Notwithstanding the most strenuous efforts to prevent it, there was a stampede of the Protestants to leave the kingdom, and we are told that about 400,000 of them left France.

Many of the refugees settled in England, and their descendants have been an honor to the land of their adoption. Among them was a LeFevre, speaker of the House of Commons, who was elevated to the peerage as Lord Eversly.

In October, 1685, after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, the parents of our ancestor, Isaac of 1669, and his three brothers and three sisters were murdered by the Roman Catholics, he alone escaping. But Isaac, then a boy of sixteen, took with him his father's Bible, which his mother had concealed by baking it in a loaf of bread. This Bible he clung to and cherished during all his journeyings and hardships for sixty-six years.

Our French ancestors, beginning with Mengen LeFevre of 1510, are then: His son John of 1540; Philip of 1574, son of John; Andrew of 1604, son of Philip, Abraham of 1632, son of Andrew; and Isaac of 1669, son of Abraham, who is our American ancestor.

The record of our French ancestry is based in part on circumstantial evidence. We must remember that the Roman Catholics, besides killing the Protestants, also wrecked their churches and destroyed all Huguenot records they could lay their hands on, as I found out when I was in Strasburg, France, in 1929. I tried to get records of Protestants in the Strasburg Cathedral, and in the Strasburg City Archives. Geo. N. LeFevre.

Another Huguenot family known as LeFerree, Ferree, Ferrie, Fuehre, Fierre, Firre, Ferie, were of the nobility of France, and originally seated at Forchamps, in Lower Normandy. The founder of the family was Robert Ferree, who in A.D. 1265 was confirmed to an extensive estate. (See "Nobility of Normandy," Vol. II, p.357. Stapleton, p.100-108.)

A descendant of this family was Daniel Ferree, born about 1650. In 1675 he married Marie de la Warembur (Warembuer or Warrembere). He was a Huguenot, and a wealthy silk manufacturer. They lived in Landau, France, along the Rhine River, and to this union were born six children: Daniel, Catherine, Mary, Jane, Philip, and John. France then controlled this territory east as far as the Rhine.

After the Revocation of the Edict of nantes, in 1685 the family fled to Strasburg. While here they were joined by the previously mentioned Isaac LeFevre, a lad of sixteen, who also had fled his home when the other members of his family were killed. They later fled on into Bavaria in Germany, taking with them Isaac, and while living there Isaac and Catherine were married. They stayed in Bavaria until the early part of 1708 when the senior Daniel died. At this time his widow assumed her maiden name as an additional means of safety.

Some time before this (1707) Queen Anne of England had issued a proclamation inviting the suffering Huguenots to come to England. However, the Ferrees had heard of Pennsylvania in America, and desiring to go there began to make plans to cross the Atlantic. Consent for them to leave the country was granted by the following paper:

"Whereas Marie, Daniel Ferree's widow, and her son Daniel Ferree with his wife, and other single children, in view of improving their condition and in furtherance of their prosperity, propose to emigrate from Steinweiler in the Mayoralty of Bittingheim, High Bailiwick, Gersheim, via Holland and England, to the island of Pennsylvania to reside there, they have requested an accredited certificate that they left the town of Steinweiler with the knowledge of the proper authorities and have deported themselves peaceably and without cause for censure, and are indebted to no one, and not subject to vassalage, being duly solicited, it has been thought proper to grant their petition declaring that the above named persons are not moving away clandestinely, that during the time their father, the widow and children resided in this place, they behaved themselves piously and honestly, that it would have been highly gratifying to us to see them remain among us, that they are not subject to bodily bondage, they mayoralty not being subject to vassalage -- they have also paid for their permission to emigrate; Mr. Fischer, the Mayor of Steinweiler being expressly interrograted, it has been ascertained that they are not liable for any debts.

In witness thereof, I have, in the absence of the counsellor of the Palatinate, etc., signed these presents, gave the same to the persons who intended to emigrate. Dated Bittingheim, March 10, 1708." (L.S.) J. P. Dietrich, "Court Clerk."

(From an old record belonging to Mrs. Minnie E. Foulk of Gap, Pa., a descendant of the above Philip Ferree. See also "Memorials of the Huguenots" by A. Stapleton, and "Rupp's History.")

"Upon their arrival in London, Madame Ferree visited William Penn in person, to whom she made known her situation. Penn became deeply interested in the sad story of her misfortunes, and the next day introduced her to Queen Anne the Sovereign of England. The good Queen promised her substantial aid which she in due time rendered. William Penn consented to give her a tract of land, which she obtained upon her settlement in Pennsylvania.

"The party remained in London for about six months during which time the colony of Rev. Joshua Kocherthal was organized, composed of French and Palatinate refugees from Bavaria. This party which the Ferrees and the LeFevres joined, obtained from the Queen a patent of naturalization and permission to colonize in America. This instrument, which is dated Aug. 27, 1708, contains the names of fifty-four persons, most of whom came to Pennsylvania some years later." (The ship's register shows only twenty-five sailed at this time.) (From "Memorials of the Huguenots" by A. Stapleton.)

Daniel Ferree, Jr., and Isaac LeFevre were already heads of families when in 1708 Madame Ferree's entire family joined the party of the Rev. Joshua Kocherthal in the proposed emigration to America.

It is recorded in the Pennsylvania archives that Penn secured 2000 acres of land for Madame Ferree. (Stapleton.)

According to an article which appeared in the Philadelphia Reformed Church Messenger dated March 13, 1872, we have the following regarding Isaac LeFevre: "The ship he came to America on set sail October 15, 1708, being transport 'Globe,' and arrived in New York December 31, 1708. He and his wife Catherine and his son Abraham, who was two years old."

After their arrival in new York the Ferree-LeFevre party proceeded to Esopus (now Kingston, N.Y.), about ninety miles up the Hudson River, where they remained several years with Huguenot friends who had come to America some forty years before. According to this compiler, two of these were Andrew and Simon LeFevre, uncles of Isaac. Andrew was never married. Simon's descendants are known to us as the New York State LeFevres.

Madame Ferree and her children remained here until the spring of 1712. In the meantime, March 16, 1710, a second son named Philip was born to Isaac and Catherine. According to a letter written by Solomon LeFevre, one of the New York State LeFevres, the Kingston Church records give Catherine's maiden name as "Fire" and states that Philip was baptized Apr. 1, 1711.

In the spring of 1712 they left Esopus and traveled overland to Philadelphia, where Madame Ferree presented her letters of introduction and recommendation from William Penn to his agents.

Madame Ferree's tract consisting of 2000 acres was located along Pequea creek about fifty-five miles west of Philadelphia. It was a part of the ten thousand acres granted by William Penn to a Martin Kindig and other agents of the Mennonite colony. This land had been surveyed in October 1710 and was subdivided in April 1711. ("Memorials of the Huguenots" by Stapleton.)

On Sept. 10, 1712, William Penn's Commissioners granted and confirmed to Daniel Ferree and Isaac LeFevre 2000 acres of land for 150 pounds, in what was then Chester County, Pa. (Lancaster County was not organized until the year of 1729.) -- Rupp's History.

According to the above record the land was deeded to Daniel and Isaac, and not to Madame Ferree.

They arrived at their destination late one summer afternoon. After all their trials and travels, it looked so good to them that they called the place "Paradise," and so the town and the township remains to this day.

From an unknown early writer we have the following:

"It was on the evening of a summer day when the Huguenots reached the verge of a hill commanding the view of the valley of the Pequea. It was a woodland scene, a forest inhabited by wild beasts, for no indication of civilized life was very near. Scattered along the Pequea among the dark green hazel inhabited by wild beast could be discerned the Indian wigwams, and the smoke coming therefrom.

"Suddenly a number of Indians darted from the woods. The females shrieked when an Indian advanced and in broken English said to Madame Ferree, 'Indian no harm white; white good to Indian; go to our Chief; come to Beaver.' Few were the words of the Indian. They went with him to Beaver Cabin, and Beaver, with the humanity which distinguishes the Indian of that period, gave to the emigrants his wigwam.

"The next day Beaver introduced them to Tawana, who lived on the great flats of Pequea and was a chief of a band of Conestoga Indians who occupied this region." -- Stapleton.

The above mentioned Tawana was one of the Chiefs who signed the famous treaty made by William Penn at Shackamaxon on Nov. 4, 1682. His remains rest in the burying ground used by the Episcopal Church in Paradise, Pa.

Four years after their arrival, in 1716, after she had through much hardship and trouble established a home for each of her children in the New World, Madame Ferree passed from the scenes of this life. Her body was laid to rest in what is now known as Carpenter's Cemetery, a plot one mile south of Paradise, which she herself had selected before her death.

The 2000 acre tract was later found to contain 2300 acres. Its western boundary was near to where U.S. 30 crosses the Pequea Creek and included the area now known as Gordonville, Paradise and Leaman Place, and extended southward to the Strasburg-Gap Road. It was about 1 1/3 miles wide, its northern and southern boundaries running east and west; and almost 3 miles long, its eastern and western boundaries running slightly north-west and south-east. The tract was divided among the Ferree Children. Isaac LeFevre's share was 383 1/3 acres near the center and extended the entire width of the tract.

Several years later Isaac purchased three other tracts, thus having one for each of his four boys. The one lay one and one-half miles north of Willow Street -- east of the Eshelman Mill Road; and the other two lay in a line north of Strasburg about one-quarter mile east of the Hartman Bridge Road. The one nearest Strasburg was for Abraham and is represented by the deed on the opposite page. The buildings and cemetery referred to on page 14 are on this tract.

 

 

LEFEVRES OF DISTINCTION IN OUR FAMILY

 

A few of our family who have achieved distinction in life are the following:

George LeFevre born 1739, a grandson of Isaac, was an Ensign (or First Lieutenant) in the Revolutionary War.

Daniel LeFevre born 1788, youngest son of the above George, was a Colonel in the War of 1812.

Hon. Joseph LeFevre born 1760, of near Paradise, Pa., was a member of Congress from 1811 to 1813.

Major General John Fulton Reynolds, born 1820 in Lancaster County. Graduated at West Point 1841. Served in the Mexican War. Killed in the battle of Gettysburg, July 1, 1863. His grandparents were William and Catherine LeFevre Reynolds, Catherine, being a granddaughter of Isaac of 1669. Their remains lie with those of Madame Ferree in Carpenter Cemetery, near Paradise, Pa.

Benjamin LeFevre born 1838. A Brigadier General in the Civil War. He was a member of the Ohio Legislature, and served three terms in Congress. Later appointed U. S. Consul at Mecklenburg, Germany.

Judge Owen Edgar LeFevre born 1848. Served on both the County and District benches in Denver, Colorado.

It may be of interest to the reader to know that Commodore Winfield Scott Schley was also a distant relative, being a descendant of Philip Ferree, Isaac LeFevre's brother-in-law. He was born near Frederick, Md., in 1839. During the war with Spain, he was in command when the Spanish fleet was destroyed off Santiago, Cuba, July 3, 1898. One month later he was promoted to Rear Admiral.

In the "Biographical Annals of Lancaster County, Penna.," published in 1903, we read (Page 450), "Among the records of Lancaster County, Pa., the name of LeFevre will be found as one representing for many years the best interests of the County, publicly, privately, educationally, and religiously. It is one of the oldest and most honorable."

As this book goes to press, time and space will not permit the enumeration of those who now serve in honorable positions. We find them associated with and in the management of the various fields of business. They are serving their country at home and abroad. There are among them lawyers, publishers, professors, farmers, doctors, teachers, ministers, missionaries, bankers, bookkeepers, authors, soldiers, merchants, and so on.

 

OTHER LEFEVRES IN EUROPE

Here are listed the names of several LeFevres of historical interest in the early centuries, but whose names to not appear in the Record. This is due to the fact that no additional information was available regarding their family connections.

Claude, d 1633. A French portrait painter and engraver.

Francois Joseph. Born in Alsace, France, Oct. 25, 1755, one of the Catholic branch of LeFevres. At eighteen he enlisted in the army as a private; at thirty-seven he was a Captain; at thirty-eight he rose to Adjutant General, then to Brigadier General, and then to General. He was one of Napoleon's greatest leaders, and in 1804, at the age of forty-nine, he was made a Marshal of the Empire.

Guy, b 1541. An able French Orientalist. He translated the Syriac Bible.

Jacques, b 1654 (or earlier). A French army officer who being a Huguenot fled from persecution in France and settled in Delaware.

James (or Jacques), b 1455. A reformer in France as Luther was in Germany. He made the first French translation of the Bible. Died a martyr.

John, b 1282. An eminent French jurist born at Angouleme.

John, b 1394. A learned French chronicler born at Abbeville.

John, b 1478. Bishop of Vienna. He favored and defended Luther.

John, b 1732. A French Philologist and master of many ancient and modern languages.

John. A French astronomer and member of the Academy of Science.

Louis Urbain, b 1653. A French Statesman.

Nicholas, b 1544. An eminent French scholar highly commended as a critic.

Nicholas, b 1620. An able French chemist. He wrote the work, "Theoretical and Practical Chemistry."

Robert, b 1756. A French portrait painter. He acquired a high reputation, and in 1815 received the title, "First Painter to the King."

Roland, b 1605. A French portrait painter, who also did fine work in England.

 

OTHER LEFEVRES IN AMERICA

 

According to Ralph LeFevre, the New York State LeFevre Historian, there were six different LeFevre families who settled in America, as follows:

The first of whom we have any record is Peter, who was in New Amsterdam in 1653. His name appears on the record at subsequent dates during the next few years in New York and Brooklyn as an owner of real estate.

As already stated, Andrew and Simon arrived at Esopus (Kingston) N. Y. about 1660. They were two of the twelve Huguenot Patentees who purchased 36,000 acres from the Indians in 1677, known as the New Paltz tract.

Hippolytus LeFevre settled at Salem, N. J., and was one of John Fenwick's Council in 1676. He became a large landholder, and his descendants are believed to have engaged in navigation, as nearly fifty years afterward vessels bearing the names of members of the LeFevre family were running from this part of New Jersey to the New England coast. In the Biographical History of Delaware we read that among the first settlers on the Delaware River were the three refugee brothers, Jacques, Hypolite, and Jean LeFevre. The first named had been an officer in the French Army.

In 1683 another LeFevre, Isaac by name, settled in New Jersey. His son Myndert in 1731 advertised his father's farm for sale, between Perth Amboy and New Brunswick. These New Jersey LeFevres have moved to other states or become extinct in the male line, as the name has been lost for a long time in that part of the country. (The Compiler of this book had also gathered together some records of the descendants of this Isaac, whom he stated was born about 1660. F. D. L.)

Then we have Isaac, born 1669, our American ancestor, who landed in New York December, 1708 and settled in Lancaster County in 1712.

At some later date a John LeFevre born 1752 emigrated to New Rochelle, N. Y. His father was also John, who lived at Havre de Grace in France. The junior John died in 1837 leaving a family of seven children, the eldest being Peter, Captain of one of the Atlantic steamers sailing from New York.

George Newton LeFevre had a record of another Isaac born 1667, the descendants of whom he labeled as the Virginia LeFevres. (F. D. L.)