The English Cazalets are originally from Sumene, France, while my branch is from Sommieres. The two towns are only a short distance apart, but, like the games of horse shoes and hand granades, location is very important. My English cousins have told me that the Sumene Cazalets were leather merchants, while the Sommieres Cazalets were tanners. All the world is aware of this famous class distinction, which, of course is still important today or so they say.
Actually, both branches were Huguenots. Estienne Cazalet is the "father" of the English Sumene branch, while my ancestors is Noe Cazalet, who arrived in New York City between 1701 and 1709. Noe was the son-in-law of Pierre Monteils, a Huguenot iron manufacturer, who had to flee after the revocation of the Edit of Nance. He left Noe in charge of his property, which did not sit well with Pierre's wife, Jeanne Boisson (she later cut he and her daughter, Maria, out of her will, although she did not know that Maria had died.). Noe converted to Catholicism to stay out of trouble, but he wasn't a very good actor. The priests decided to question him about his sincerity and he blerted out "You can raise my children as Catholics, but for me it must come from God." According to Huguenot expert Charles Baird, Noe then found it necessary to get the hell out of France while the getting was good. When he got to New York, he married one Elizabeth Ony and they had five children. At least one of the kids had children, and although I still have a genealogical gap between 1769, when Pierre Cazellett married Elizabeth Burns in the French Huguenot Church in New York City and 1831, when my gggrandfather was born, I think that is my family.
Since then, the Sumene Cazalets have prospered and some have even wormed their way into the English Royal succession. They have, as you said, migrated to Russia, South Africa, India, Australia, New Zealand and even the USA and prospered everywhere they went.
The Sommiere Cazalets, on the other hand, have done slightly less well. We remain true to Noe's vision of rabble rousing, rebellion and poverty. We are all pirates, thieves and newspaper men. A character flaw, it appears, the Sumene Cazalets had correctly anticipated.
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