HISTORY

French Huguenots began arriving in the Virginia Colony as early as 1620. In 1700-1701, five ships including the Mary and Ann, Ye Peter and Anthony, the Nassaus and the William and Elizabeth brought Huguenot refugees from London and embarked at the mouth of the James River. Their sponsors were King William III of Orange and his wife, Queen Mary, who could identify with their desire for religious freedom as Protestants.

Protestant French Refugees or "Huguenots" fled religious persecution in their mother country and lived in England, Ireland and Holland performing military services for King William prior to being granted lands in the New World for permanent abode with the promise of religious freedom. The Colony of Manakintown was founded above the Falls of the James River, near what is Midlothian, Virginia, at the site of a village deserted by the Monacan Indians. In 1704 they were granted 10,000 acres divided into plots for each immigrant.

Kentucky Branch History

The Kentucky Branch of the Huguenot Society of the Founders of Manakin in the Colony of Virginia was established soon after the National organization in 1924. Our purpose is to honor the heritage of our French Huguenot ancestors who suffered disporoportionately during migration here and in local battles of the American Revolution. It is believed those on the Kentucky frontier were less adept in survival skills than their peers of English origins. Some of our French Huguenot ancestors migrated due to Revolutionary War land grants.

The Kentucky Branch of the Huguenot Society of the Founders of Manakin in the Colony of Virginia meets twice a year in the Commonwealth of Kentucky to perpetuate the memory of our Protestant French ancestors who sacrificed so much for religious freedom.

 

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