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Archiver > LANDON > 1999-05 > 0927570614

From: Michael Landon <>
Subject: Thomas Delaval
Date: Mon, 24 May 1999 11:30:14

Hi Suzanne:

Since my own middle name is de Laval, whenever I look at our family tree
and see that my six-times-great grandfather, Thomas, Landon married "Mary,
daughter of Thomas Delaval, merchant of New York" that name always catches
my attention. However, My "de Laval" comes froma different source. My
paternal grandmother, Rose Emily Willis Landon, was descended from a
Huguenot Count de Laval who fled from France after the Revocation of the
Edict of Nantes in 1685, served as an army officer under William and Mary,
and was rewarded with the grant of large landed estate in Northern Ireland.
Fighting in the War of the Spanish Succession (1702-13) he was taken
prisoner by the French and died in a Bordeaux prison. His diary describing
his escape from France with his family, and letters that he sent home to
his family from Bordeaux are in the Irish National Library in Dublin. He
had three sons, all of whom had died or been killed in battle by 1713, and
his sole heiress ("Amy," if I remember correctly) married a Willis. The
Willis family passed the name down from generation to generation, and, when
I was a teenager, my father was still receiving his very minute share of
the income from the de Laval estate in Ireland--around 1960, he and his
brothers and the other Willis cousins conveyed their shares over to a
Wiilis who was still living in Ireland. I Always said I would not pass the
name on to another generation, but--because his mother and I met and got
engaged while attending summer school at Laval University in Quebec (named
after Archbishop de Laval--the first R.C. Primate of French Canada))--he is
Clay de Laval Landon. He usually spells it DeLaval now.

Back to Thomas: I have always assumed that he belonged to the family of
Delavals who were the landlords of the English village of Seaton Delaval,
located a little north of Newcastle-on-Tyne in Northumberland. In the 17th
and 18th centuries they were rather notorious for wild living, and people
called them "the mad Delavals of Seaton Delaval." If I remember correctly,
they had (like one branch of the English Landons) come over to England from
France in the Late Tudor period. Perhaps they were another branch of the
same family that fled later to Ireland. Anyway, I am proud to be descended
(I hope) from both lines, and plan to do some research on both of them,
when I retire, a year or two from now. I would love to see copies of at
least some of his correspondence you have if it's not too much trouble. My
mailing address is: Department of History, University of Mississippi,
University, MS 38677, U.S.A.

My father's youngest brother, Col. Guy de Laval Landon, had a son named
Charles who emigrated to Australia sometime in the 1930's. He died in an
accident in 1946, leaving two daughters. I have never met them, but they
visited with my parents and brothers in England once or twice in the 60's
and 70"s, at which time their home was in Sydney. Presumably they are now
married, and going by their married names.



Ten days ago, I fedexed off a copy of the Broadview Press (1997) edition
of selected works by L.E.L., as a thank-offering for all she has done for
Landon genealogy. It sounds like you have done a whole lot too.

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