The Serres and DuPrees
|Our line of the Gaillard family married into two interesting families, the Serres and the DuPrees. Both, like the Gaillards, were of Huguenot descent. Theodore Gaillard married
Elizabeth Serre. Charles Gaillard married Anne DuPree and Charles
Gaillard, Jr. married his cousin, Sara DuPree.
The Serre family history is probably best found in the
“South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine,” Volume
XLIII, 1942, page 14, stating:
“As the Act of Naturalization (1696) records a “Noah Serre
weaver”, he was probably bred to that trade. He was granted
lot No.190 in Charles Town, May 9, 1694, and it’s survey ordered March 3, 1694/95. Either for him or his son, Noe, the Surveyor General was ordered to lay off 500 acres, August 27, 1701,
and 200 acres in Craven County, December 21, 1703. The second
Noe was a planter on Santee, perhaps the original owner of Hampton. His son, the third Noe, began the house which passed to
its present owners, the Rutledges, from their ancestor, Daniel
Horry, who received it as part of the dowry of his first wife,
Judith Serre, daughter of the builder. A daughter of one of
the Noe Serres married Theodore, son of Bartholomew Gaillard.
In brief, the weaver’s family rose to the top of society in
Hampton, the Serre plantation, near McClellanville, South
Carolina is still standing. Owned by the state of South Carolina, it serves as a museum. It is one of the oldest and most
interesting houses in the South. The original house, still
standing, was constructed by the Serres. Only the portico was
added by the Rutledges. It is easy enough to imagine how the
house originally looked before the columns of the Greek Revival
craze were added. It was a large and dignified house of imposing simplicity, a testimony to colonial taste and craftsmanship.
The DuPree family is descended from Josias and Martha DuPree, Huguenots, who went from France to England and then to
South Carolina in 1686. A family record states: “The DuPree
family, respectable in France, had to flee from thence to England at the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. While in England
they found Benjamin Simons, a French child, whom they took into
their family.” (Simons later married one of their daughters,
Mary Esther DuPree.)
The best history of the DuPrees dealing with our branch,
from which the above quote is taken, is found in an article
entitled “Josias and Martha DuPree and Some of Their Descendents
in the January, 1970 “South Carolina Historical Magazine.”
(South Carolina Historical Magazine,” Vol. 71, No. 1, January,
1970, Charleston, S.C. pages 46-60.)
Josias DuPree and his sons, Cornelius and Josias, Jr. became citizens in 1697. Josias was granted land in 1702 on the
eastern branch of the Cooper River, and in 1703 he was granted
an additional 730 acres. Josias, Sr. was active on the vestry
of St. Thomas and St. Denis Church and signed a warrant to pay
the salary of the schoolmaster, “tenne pounds.” His will was
proved in 1747.
Josias DuPree, Jr. married Sarah Gamier in 1701. She was
the daughter of Daniel and Elizabeth Fanton Garnier of near La
Rochelle, France. Her sister Elizabeth married Daniel Horry.
In 1721 Josias DuPree, Jr. was a Justice of the Peace for Berkeley County, appointed by Governor Nicholson. Justices of the
Peace were usually men of either property or prominence. In
1731 he was a vestryman of Prince Frederick’s Episcopal Church.
Josias and Sara Garnier DuPree had, among other children,
a son, Josias Garnier DuPree. He married first, Ann--, second, Sara Allston. He lived in Prince Frederick’s Parish, and was
clerk for the parish. His name appears innumerable times in
their Register Book, which has been reprinted by the Colonial
Dames. In 1734 he was a pew holder in Prince Frederick’s Episcopal Church. He had, among other children, a son, Josias
DuPree, born 1730 who married Ann Mouzon. He also had a son,
Lewis, who moved to North Carolina.
Josias DuPree and Ann Mouzon DuPree had six children, including Anne and Lewis. Josias died young on March 2, 1764,
aged 34, and his wife remarried.
Anne DuPree, their daughter, married Charles Gaillard I on
September 13, 1770. Her brother, Lewis, who as far as we know
never married, was one of the most brilliant and colorful of
ancestors. He was the uncle of Charles Gaillard, Jr., the medical evangelist, and the line of skilled intelligence and crusading compassion is evident.
Lewis DuPree, 1762-1813, followed the tradition of the 18th
century man, thinker and inventor, and was part of the Golden
Age of the South, in which liberal ideas flourished, before the
latter descent of the Orthodox Period.
Lewis invented pendulum screens, tinkered in mechanics,
drew maps, and wrote tracts against slavery and the use of animal food. Some of these tracts survive. Even in the 18th century his views on slavery did not make him popular in South
Carolina and Charleston, although they tolerated him, and his
views on the use of animal food caused him to be regarded as
something of an eccentric.
His views on slavery have been justified, and his views on
animal food only recently, in which it has been popularized how
animal fat is dangerous to health. The “Charleston Courier’ of
January 4, 1813 carried this obituary. (He had died visiting the
DuPrees of North Carolina.) “Died, Raleigh, N.C.: Lewis DuPree of Charleston, S.C., author of several tracts against slavery and the use of animal food. His life was devoted to what he believed to be the best interests of mankind.” It was a tongue in
cheek tribute to an idealist whose ideals they could not share.
He was one of the most interesting men of his time and area.
Never marrying, he devoted himself to what he believed to be the
best interests of mankind.
It should be remarked upon that the testimonials of the
DuPree family in nearly all generations remark upon their high
intelligence and mechanical skills. This intelligence and skill
with the fingers surfaced again in Charles Gaillard, Jr., the
son of Anne DuPree, in his surgical skill and medical training.
However, there was more to Lewis DuPree and his nephew, Charles
Gaillard, Jr. than mere intelligence and finger skill. There
was in them both a sensitivity to suffering, whether that of the
slave or the sick, a genuine power of compassion that raised
them truly high.
If one wrote tracts in a liberal age, and would thus be classified as a liberal, the other sermons in an orthodox period, and thus would be classified as conservative, their motivating sensitivity to human suffering and compassion for humanity
was the same. The same spirit blew them into different ports.
One was a Christian, preaching by bonfires that this flesh shall
see God, the other probably was not a Christian, if one, a very
superficial and civilized 18th century one, but what did it
matter? This uncle and nephew were united in devoting themselves
to what they felt to be the best interests of mankind.
Charles Gaillard, Jr. married his cousin, a widow, Sara
DuPree LaBorn., the daughter of an earlier Lewis DuPree, for whom
the tract writer was named, who had gone to North Carolina where
he married Lucille Ballou in 1762. In North Carolina this earlier Lewis DuPree was an officer in the North Carolina militia
during the American Revolution, listed as Colonel, a member of
the North Carolina House of Representatives in 1778, and a member of the Senate of North Carolina 1788-91. He was a prominent
Though far apart geographically, a colony was a long distance in those days, this aristocratic Gaillard-DuPree strain
married cousins constantly, going to see each other for long visits, which always seemed to end in a wedding.
In this family of Lewis DuPree, Sara married her cousin,
Charles Gaillard, Jr. Her sister, Mary Elizabeth, married Josias DuPree Gaillard. Her brother, James DuPree, married Katherine
Gaillard. Later on, Sara Holleman, daughter of this Sara, would
marry for the second time another cousin, Archibald DuPree Gaillard. This was after the untimely young death of her first
husband, Joseph Holleman, Sr.
These aristocrats seemed to prefer others with the same
background, outlook and intelligence. Of these consanguineous
marriages, no ill effects have been recorded or noticed, nor,
for that matter, have any positive ones.
Dr. James MacLeod may be contacted through the Neill Macaulay Foundation.