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Martel family page

This family name, common throughout the Channel Islands, is mentioned from the 16th century onwards

Jean Martell.jpg

Jean Martel, of Jersey, founder of the French brandy business

If you can help with information about the Martel family, please contact, 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

The surname Martel is well-established Anglo-Norman surname in the Channel Islands. It comes from the Norman French word for hammer (marteau in modern French). It is probably the closest equivalent to the English surname Smith. A Geffroi Martel was allegedly one of the knights who accompanied William the Conqueror in 1066. He is also mentioned as a sub-tenant in the Domesday Book. King Charlemagne's grandfather was one Charles Martel (abt 688 - 741), King of the Franks.

The earliest Martels references to members of the Martel family in Guernsey can be found in the 1500s. In Jersey, the surname can be found as early as 1229, when Anquetil Martel is mentioned in Lettres closes relatives aux isles de la Manche (1205-1227).


  • Martel, 1229
  • Martell

Family Records


Guernsey family trees


Jersey family trees

Note: This is a classic example of a family which is difficult to research because there are frequently two or more men with the same name raising families at the same time in the same parish. Having cross-checked all trees with parish records we are reasonably confident in their accuracy, but researchers are advised to exercise caution and attempt to find other sources.


Church records


Family histories

  • Martel family, a history of the Jersey Martels by Roland de Caen
  • Jean Martell (1694-1753) - Jersey-born founder of Martell Cognac and responsible for establishing brandy trade routes with Guernsey

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

Further Reading

  • Firino, Roger, La Famille Martell, (Paris 1924)


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