Le Gresley

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Le Gresley family page

This family name, although it sounds French, probably came to Jersey from England


Mary Ann Syvret Le Gresley (1883-1975) (St O), daughter of John Francis and Mary Ann Syvret

If you can help with information about the Le Gresley family, please contact editcontact@theislandwiki.org, using Jerripedia as the subject of your email. We are particularly interested in information which will help create further family trees, family histories and photographs

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Origin of Surname

Le Gresley is derived from the Latin gracilis meaning slim. It is not at all clear how the family originated in Jersey: the name sounds French, but according to one of the family trees listed below, appears to have arrived in Jersey from England, where it started as de Gresley and can apparently be traced back to the 12th century. However, the accuracy of this tree is far from certain and there are discrepancies between it and the other trees which show the same later descent.

The name is certainly not Norman, nor have we found it in any of our usual French sources, so the best guess is that the family/families in Jersey did originate from England.

Early records

  • Nicholas (1564- ) St O, father of Rachel, who married Jean Le Rossignol


  • Le Gresley, 1607
  • de Gresley

Family records


Family trees

There is considerable doubt about some of the generation links in the above trees and they should be treated with suspicion. The trees suggest that there were two marriages between a Jean Le Gresley and an Elizabeth Perree, and the children of these marriages are sometimes shown against the wrong parents. One Jean Le Gresley was born in 1708, as was his wife, and the other was born in 1740. The confusion is compounded by both Elizabeth Perrees being shown as the daughter of Josue Perree and Marguerite de Caen, but with birth dates for this couple of 1700 and 1701 respectively, they could not possibly have been the parents of an Elizabeth born in 1708.

The result of all this confusion is that the two trees below should also be treated with suspicion.


Church records


Family histories


Great War service


Family wills

Family businesses

Family album

Ministers and lay preachers of the Methodist French Circuit in 1867, including P Le Gresley. The picture was taken by Asplett and Green a year after they set up in business at 18½ Beresford Street and also includes Philippe Amy, P Tourgis, Thomas J Desprès, P Norman, Mr Ahier, Mr Benest, P Garnier, Mr Hamon, D Bisson, G Le Masurier, Abraham Pallot, J Syvret, P G Adair, Philippe Amy, (3rd from left seated) G Skelton, T Binet, T Billot, Mr Vautier, E de Carteret, W Le Duc, T Lucas, H Collas and J Le Cornu

Click on any image to see the full-size version

Newfoundland story

There is a story recounted by L E F English in his article The Jersey Men, published in the Newfoundland Quarterly - 1950 (available at Newfoundland Grand Banks) as follows: "A story is told of an old 'Jawseyman' named Greeley who had a thriving business at Little Bell Island in Conception Bay. So passionately fond was he of his ancestral home in the Channel Islands that he used his magic powers to revisit Jersey each weekend. It happened that a fisherman went down to the shore this Saturday evening to shoot for a Sunday dinner a sea duck or whatever wild fowl that chanced to wing its way in range of his long musket. Just at nightfall a giant bird was seen to pass eastward, and the hunter raised his trusty weapon and fired. The strange bird fell beyond a point of rock, and the fisherman on rushing to the spot found the bewildered and bewhiskered Jersey planter picking buckshot from his legs. "

Family gravestones

Click on any image to see a larger version. See the Jerripedia gravestone image collection page for more information about our gravestone photographs

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