I thought I would look at the earliest record in the London Gazette of someone named de Crespigny. I assumed it would be the record of a military appointment.

Philip Crespigny (1704-1765)
Attributed to Jean-Baptiste Van Loo – Date unknown … Owner/Location: Kelmarsh Hall retrieved from http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/yourpaintings/paintings/philip-champion-de-crespigny-17041765-49144

I was surprised to find that this de Crespigny was my sixth great grandfather, Philip Crespigny (1704-1765), who had been present at the proclamation of King George II (1683-1760) on 14 June 1727.1

King George II by Charles Jervas painted about 1727. Photograph retrieved from Wikipedia.

I realised I knew very little about my sixth great grandfather.

Philip was the fifth of six children of Thomas Champion Crespigny (1664-1712) and Magdalen née Granger (1664-1730).

Thomas, who had been born in France, came as a boy to England as a Huguenot refugee. He served in the English military. From 1689 he was a cornet in Lord Cardross‘ Scottish Regiment of Dragoons, a Lieutenant of Colonel Richard Cunningham’s Regiment of Scots Dragoons in 1695, and Captain Lieutenant of the Marquis of Lothian‘s Regiment of Dragoons at Jedburgh in 1703.2 This regiment later became the 7th Queen’s Own Hussars.

Thomas married Magdalen, daughter of Israel Granger of Alencon in 1695 at St Mary Magdalen, Old Fish Street, London.3 Magdalen had also been born in France and her family were also Huguenot refugees.4

They had six children:5

  • William (1698-1721)
  • Marie (1699-1700)
  • Jeanne (1700-1773), who married Gilbert Allix (1694-1767)
  • Claude (1701-1703)
  • Philip (1704-1765)
  • Claude (1706-1782)

Thomas died on 17 July 1712. He was buried at St Marylebone, London.  His will, dated 1704, left all his goods to his wife Magdalen.6

The surviving children at the time of Thomas’s death were aged 14, 12, 8 and 6.

I wonder who helped Magdalen bring up her children? Was the family helped by her Granger relatives or by Magdalen’s de Crespigny in-laws?

Magdalen’s mother, Marie Granger, was a widow when she made her will in 1711.7 Magdalen’s father, Israel Granger, had died in 1700.8 Marie Granger left her estate between Magdalen and the children of another daughter, Marthe. Marthe had married Florand Dauteuil in 1699, at the Savoy Church in the Strand. Marthe had died before 1711 when her mother made her will. Mary Granger’s will was proved in 1713. It appears that Magdalen had no adult relatives on the Granger side of her family to support her.

Thomas’s older brother Pierre (1662-1739) was a lawyer. In her will, Magdalen leaves Pierre 200 pounds.9 In his will Pierre makes Philip and Claude his executors and leaves them one hundred pounds each.10 Pierre was the godfather of Claude, Magdalen and Thomas’s youngest son. Pierre did not marry and had no children. I think it very likely that Pierre helped Magdalen to raise her children.

Although we do not have the details, it would seem that the education of Claude and Philip enabled them to be successful: Claude as secretary of the South Sea Company, a major British trading company; Philip as a lawyer, who eventually became a proctor to the Lord Admiral, in addition to holding several directorships.

Philip and Claude had very successful careers despite the untimely death of their father and the fact that both their parents were Huguenot refugees.


1. The London Gazette Publication date: 13 June 1727 Issue: 6590 Page: 1 retrieved from https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/6590/page/1
2. from page 22 of Huguenot and Scots Links, 1575-1775 Author David Dobson Publisher Genealogical Publishing Com, 2010 ISBN 0806352841, 9780806352848 Length 92 pages retrieved from http://books.google.com.au/books?id=sN1nOOPKqKsC&pg=PA22 3 February 2012
3. Name: Magdalen Granger Marriage Date: Feb 1695 Parish: St Mary Magdalen, Old Fish Street County: Surrey Borough: City of London Spouse: Thomas Champion Record Type: Marriage Register Type: Parish Register from London Metropolitan Archives, St Mary Magdalen Old Fish Street, Composite register: baptisms, 1664 – 1717, marriages, 1664 – 1712 and burials, 1664 – 1717, P69/MRY10/A/002/MS010221 retrieved from ancestry.com.au
4. de la Pinsonnais, Amaury. “La Famille Granger.” Histoire Et Généalogie. Amaury de la Pinsonnais, 13 June 2010. Web. 14 Jan. 2015. http://pinsonnais.free.fr/genea/?id=granger&page=2.
5. de Crespigny, Rafe Champions in Normandy : being some remarks on the early history of the Champion de Crespigny family. R. de Crespigny, Canberra, 1988. page 9.
6. Prerogative Court of Canterbury Wills (PCC): Thomas Champion De Crespigny Date of Probate July 1712 Date of Will 24th June 1704 Reference PROB11/527 retrieved from thegenealogist.co.uk
7. PCC: Mary Granger Place of Abode St James Westminster, London Date of Probate March 1713 Date of Will 18th February 1711 Reference PROB11/532 retrieved from thegenealogist.co.uk
8. London, England, Wills and Probate. Israel Granger, Middlesex, Probate date 1700. London Metropolitan Archives and Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section, Clerkenwell, London, England; Reference Number: AM/PW/1700/031
9. PCC: Magdalen Champion de Crespigny Profession Widow Date of Probate 9th October 1730 Date of Will 19th February 1730 Reference PROB11/640 retrieved from thegenealogist.co.uk
10. PCC: Peter Champion de Crespigny Place of Abode St James Westminster, Middlesex Date of Probate 1st August 1740 Date of Will 10th August 1736 Reference PROB11/704 retrieved from thegenealogist.co.uk