Papers of the Families of Chamier and Deschamps, 1623-1862

Scope and Content

The manuscripts and papers relate chiefly to the Huguenot family of Chamier from c.1600 to the nineteenth century. They include works by Daniel Chamier I as well as later correspondence from family members stationed with the British Army in India. There is also material concerning the history and genealogy of the family, compiled and collected by Henry Chamier during the nineteenth century. Material relating to the Deschamps family includes works by Jean Deschamps and correspondence to him from his brother Jacques.

Administrative / Biographical History

Daniel Chamier I (1565-1621) is the most well known member of his prominent Huguenot family. He studied under Thodore de Bze, later becoming pastor of the Reformed Church at Montlimar and Professor of Theology at the Protestant Academy at Montaubon. He played a major role in drawing up the Edict of Nantes of 1598. He was killed at the siege of Montaubon in 1621.

Daniel set an example followed by many male members of the Chamier family, including his son Adrian, and in 1686 Daniel Chamier III was ordained pastor, the sixth of nine male members in five generations. In 1691 he fled France to London with his wife, Anne, his infant son, his widowed mother Madeleine and his two sisters Madeleine and Jeanne. From this time on the Chamiers established themselves in England, selling their lands in Montlimar.

Jean Deschamps (1709-1767) was a member of another well known French Huguenot family from Bergerac. He was a pupil of Christian Wolf at Marbourg. He later became tutor to the sons of Prince Frederick of Prussia, leaving in 1746 following quarrels with French members of the Royal Academy of Science in Berlin. In 1749 he moved to England and became Minister of the Savoy Chapel, London. He married Judith Chamier (d.1801) in 1753. Their son Antoine was the first of the Dechamps-Chamiers, who became British subjects. Later family members were employed with the British Army in India and with the East India Company.


The collection is divided into four sections. The first contains papers relating to Daniel Chamier I, and his son Adrian Chamier. The second section consists of papers relating to Jean Deschamps. The third has two items concerning Emile Deschamps. The final section is made up of family papers and genealogical material collected mostly by Henry Chamier. Material is arranged chronologically within each section.

Access Information

ACCESS: Accessible to all registered readers

REPROGRAPHIC: Photocopies and photographic copies can be supplied for educational use and private study purposes only, depending on the condition of the documents.

Other Finding Aids

NOTE: Copyright on all Finding Aids belongs to the University of Nottingham.

  • In the Reading Room, University of Nottingham Library: Typescript Catalogue, 9 pp
  • At the National Register of Archives, London: Typescript Catalogue, 9 pp

Conditions Governing Use

COPYRIGHT: Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the Keeper of the Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections (email ). The Department will try to assist in identifying copyright owners but the responsibility for copyright clearance before publication ultimately rests with the reader.

LANGUAGE: English, French and Latin.

Custodial History

The collection came to Nottingham University Library in 1970 from a member of the Chamier family. Many of the volumes and papers have either book plates or notes in the hand of Henry Chamier (b 1795) which suggests that a great deal of the material was collected or sorted by him, probably during the 1850s.


Thorpe, Lewis, The Chamier Manuscripts, Nottingham French Studies vol X, no 2, pp 49-66

Family Names