François Guilliaumé, SV/PROG

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François Guilliaumé, SV/PROG

Also Known As: "Francois Giliomee; Francois Guillaumet", "Guillaumet"
Birthplace: St Laurant d' Aigouze near Aimargues, Languedoc, France
Death: 1730
Cape of Good Hope, South Africa
Immediate Family:

Son of Jacques Guilliaumé and Marie Bordasser
Husband of Claudine Eloy, SM/PROG
Father of Mathieu Guilliaumé, b1; Jeanne Guilliaumé, SM; Marié Jordaan, b3 and Anne Guilliaumé, b4

Occupation: Blacksmith/Silk Spinner
Managed by: Gertie Louisa Biggs
Last Updated:

About François Guilliaumé, SV/PROG


GILLIOMEE: François Guilliaumé from Languedoc, France arrived at the Cape from Berlin, Germany (where he'd gone with a group of Huguenots in the 1700s), in 1726 on board the 'Berbice'. He travelled with his wife, Claudine Eloy – born in Bordighera, Ligurië, Italy, and their children Mathieu, Jeanne, Marie & Anne. The VOC sent him at the request of the Cape government for people who could promote the silk industry. He also seems to have been sent to follow up on the estate of Jacques Labat. The silkworm enterprise, however, failed. [Sharon Doubell 2013 Compiled from

  • Pieter Coertzen, Die Hugenote van Suid Afrika 1688-1988 Cape Town: Tafelberg Publishers Limited, 1988),
  • Krige, Ode. Die Hugenote, 1688-1988 Ter Viering Van N Onblusbare Gees: Nasionale Feeskomitee Hugenote 300.

See SA French Huguenots Project ]


Emigration; 1726 on the ship "Berbice" The official entry on the ship record records his origin as being Aimargues or Saint-Laurent-d'Aigouz, France. Source: My People's puzzle

Francois (Guillaumet) GILIOMEE, * Lanquedoc,France 19.11.1680

  • 1. Arrived 1726 and admitted to the NG Church on 25 11 1726
  • 2. Started a silk spinning industry adjacent to the Slave Lodge but the

enterprise ended when all the worms died. Spin Street, remains as a pedestrian lane adjoining parliament. x 1710, Claudine CLOY, * Savoye, France Witth aknowledgement to GSSA - Overberg families.

Francois Guilliaume in Boucher

Nicolas Labat of Drakenstein married Elisabeth Vivier, daughter of Jacob Vivier, in June 1717 and died on December 30 of the same year. His brother Jacob in London laid claim to the estate and on October 12, 1724 produced witnesses in support of his right to inherit... A deposition was made before the London lawyer Jacques de Brissac, another refugee from Poitou, but it was not until June 9, 1726 that steps were taken to recover the inheritance. On that date Brissac drew up a power of attorney appointing Francois Guilliaume, shortly to come put to the Cape, to collect whatever was due to Jacob Labat.

...Mention has already been made of Francois Guilliaume in connection with the Labat inheritance. He was sent out in 1726 with his wife and family on the Berbice to raise silkworms and to stimulate a Cape silk industry for the Dutch East India Company. The enterprise was not a success, but Guilliaume became a Cape burgher in 1735 and the family remained to make a contribution to South African history. Francois Guilliaume came from Aimargues in Languedoc, or probably more accurately from Saint-Laurent-d’Aigouze. These were localities in the strongly Calvinist region below Nimes towards Aiguesmortes, the former Mediterranean seaport from which Louis IX set out on his crusading adventures in the thirteenth century. Aiguesmortes was to colour the Huguenot imagination after the revocation as the site of the Tower of Constance, one of the many prisons in which Calvinists were incarcerated.

It is possible that Francois was the son of Jacques Guilliaume and Marie Bordasse, born on November 29, 1680 and baptized at Aimargues five days later, or perhaps of a related couple Francois Guilliaume and Isabeau Ducroze, married at Aimargues on December 6. 1675.

The Cape settler was in exile by 1700 and settled in Berlin as a tailor with his wife Claudine Eloy, whose place of origin will be discussed in the next chapter. Their son Mathieu, who worked with him in the nascent silk industry at the Cape and was later employed as a blacksmith, was born in Berlin on February 20, 1712. His daughters Jeanne, Marie and Anne were doubtless also born in Germany.

The Guilliaumes were in Amsterdam by May 1726 and it would be interesting to know how Francois came to be chosen to act for Jacob Labat. Did he perhaps visit London? Where too had he acquired his skill as a silk maker? It was a flourishing industry in Languedoc, showing phenomenal growth in Nimes during the seventeenth century. Much of the raw silk came from the Cevennes and Calvinists from that mountain region were encouraged to bring their techniques to the papal Comtat Venaissin across the Rhone in order to increase production there.…

Others who came to the Cape of Good Hope from the region considered in this survey had careers which place them even more firmly in the category of company men than Frangois Guilliaume, even though, like the silk expert, they left descendants to swell the burgher ranks.

.• M. Boucher.M (1981). French speakers at the Cape: The European Background. Pretoria, UNISA: Ch 6: Cape settlers II: from the Rhone to the Atlantic p145-6, 156-7


1. Aimargues or Saint-Laurent-d'Aigouz, France

2. Arriveer in die Kaap via Berlyn(Where he'd gone with a group of Huguenots in the 1700s-Geni) vanaf Texel: 22.10.1726 met die skip Berbices

3. Sterk Calvinisties grootgeword

4. Beroep: 1700 kleremaker

5. 1726 word hy in diens van die VOC in diens geneem

6. Sy taak was om ‘n sywurmboerdery te vestig

7. Die sywurmboerdery was ‘n mislukking

8. Van hierdie sywurmbome staan nog op die plaas van Goeweneur Willem Adriaan van der Stel- Ingestuur Ds.MG Muller

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François Guilliaumé, SV/PROG's Timeline

February 20, 1711
Perpignan, Pyrénées-Orientales, Languedoc-Roussillon, France
Languedoc, France
Cape of Good Hope, South Africa
St Laurant d' Aigouze near Aimargues, Languedoc, France