The Transition Generations

Graphic, by US Gen Net

Generation 5
2nd duc d'Épernon
The Years in Exile

Generation 6
The Emigrants
JOHN EPECON/EPPERSON SR. (m. Sarah Fondan-Remon and Elizabeth Beard)

Generation 7
The Emigrants
JOHN EPECON/EPPERSON JR. (m. Elizabeth Alexander)

Generation 5
The Years in Exile


When the king of France and Cardinal Richelieu leveled a price on the head of Bernard de Nogaret, the duc de la Valette, he prudently fled the country.

He left behind his second wife, Marie du Cambout, and his grown children, now in their thirties. Bob Epperson's web lineage states that "records indicate" Bernard left France with thirteen servants. He also states that Bernard was divorced from Marie du Cambout.

Most genealogies do not portray that Bernard ever divorced. That of Bob Epperson, however, does, though I haven't seen his source for that information.

While the duc de la Valette was out of France (between 1638-1643), was he already divorced and, while there, marry a third time? Did he divorce while outside France and remarry? Or, did he have a liaison while in exile? Was there a child during this time? How did the name change from Épernon to Epperson? Who emigrated to Virginia in 1675: was it Bernard's son? or a grandson?

Research does disclose a distinguished family of Faudoas, and information from many websites gives lists of the family members; but I have yet to find Antoinette (or Alice/Anne) listed as a daughter with verified documentation or source; most genealogies provide only one son who would be a sibling to Antoinette. Also, when I have found Antoinette (or Alice/Anne), I see obscure references (e.g., Family Search Ancestral File, AFN:NW1P-KF). I will continue my own research work to try to locate evidence of this union.

In the meantime, I have found one genealogy that appears promising. It is the Rootweb lineage of The Avin F. Burch Family of Loveland, Colorado. The site was last updated in 2005. The email address provided was:

I will here proceed on the presumption that our Epperson lineage does descend from the Nogarets de la Valette - the ducs d'Épernon - and move forward presenting the best of what I have seen, and perhaps I or others will one day find the truth about these mysterious times and individuals with reliable, verified, data.

The several lineages I have consulted present widely varied information. My discussion of them is lengthy, and so I've prepared a separate page detailing the prominent, and conflicting, information on them, including a discussion of the evolution of the surname Épernon/Espernon/Epecon to Epperson/Apperson: French-American Transition.

I recognize that names and dates differ, to a greater or lesser degree, on the lineages to be found on the internet and elsewhere. Here I shall use primarily the data on Bob Epperson's web lineage (see Resources, below). His major source is information provided 1996 and 1997 by Vaughn Elmo Epperson's Descendancy Chart and Family Group Records, on file at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. There are still flaws, to be sure, but hopefully better research will be some day located and we can get everyone straight once and for all.


ANTOINETTE FAUDOAS was born in 1597 in Sérillac, Gaure, France. She is seen in some records as Anne or Alice.

She was one of eight children of Jean Faudoas II (twin), baron de Sérillac, and Brandelise Bouzet, who married 8 Apr 1567 in Bouges, Sauvetat, France.

Jean II Faudoas was born around 1544 in Sérillac, Sauvetot, France, the son of Olivier de Faudoas, baron de Sérillac, and Marguerite Anne de Lary de Sérillac. Jean II died 1 October 1605 in Saint-Puy, Sauvetat, France; and was buried October 4, 1605 in the Chapel Romillac.

Brandelise Bouzet was born in 1547 at Roquepine, Gers, France (the daughter of Pons du Bouzet and Marguerite de Madirac). Brandelise died December 20, 1617 in Sérillac, Gaure, France.

The Faudoas Children

  1. +Marguerite Faudoas, b. 21 Feb 1573, Sérillac, FR; d. 25 Sep 1646, France.

  2. +Francois Faudoas, b. abt. 1575, Sérillac, FR; d. 16 Mar 1621, Doucelles, France.

  3. Pierre d'Mothe-Sérillac Faudoas, b. abt. 1579, Auge, FR; d. Dec 1628, Sommieres, France.

  4. Jean Faudoas, b. abt. 1581, Martel-Sérillac, FR; d. 22 Oct 1661, Doucelles, France.

  5. Jean-Francois Faudoas, b. abt. 1585, Serre, Sérillac, FR.

  6. Jean-Francois d'Ile Faudoas, b. abt. 1592, Gascogne, France, d. 10 Jul 1630, Saint-Jean, D'Angely, France.

  7. Olympe Faudoas, b. abt. 1593, Sérillac, FR.

  8. +(Alice) Antoinette B. Faudoas, b. abt. 1597, Sérillac, FR; d. Abt. 1648, Glamorganshire, Wales.

It's difficult to tell exactly where Bernard (and whoever was with him) spent his years in exile. Or how? Did he have servants with him? Did he have personal funds with him, or available to him? Did he live in a rented country home? Was he wandering about "the fields of London"? Was he given asylum by an English noble?

One thing is certain, there was a price on his head if he returned to France, and so he was gone for about five years, after which time he returned when the danger was past.

For the rest of what I have on the life of Bernard de Nogaret de la Valette, the 2nd duc d'Épernon, please return to my main page on the Nogaret de la Valette families.

In about 1648 or so, when her son was ten years old, Antoinette de Faudoas died.

Acacia hand graphic

What was their economic situation at the time? Were they in Wales? It has been stated that after Antoinette died John was then raised in the Channel islands by surrogate parents. Who were they? Her family was French? How was this arrangement made? Had Bernard left funds to care for Antoinette and their child? If yes..., once Antoinette died, were funds available to those who raised the boy? Could that income source have provided the necessary funds for his ultimate passage to the Colonies?


  1. JOHN EPERNON SR. was born in 1638, outside France. This was the year his father fled France.

Generation 6

JOHN EPERNON SR. (son of Bernard) was born in 1638 outside France: somewhere in The Netherlands, or at sea between The Netherlands and England or the Channel island of Jersey, enroute to exile.

In 1643, when young John was but five years old, Bernard returned to France upon the death of his father. Both the king and the hated Cardinal Richelieu had died. Bernard succeeded his father to the dukedom of Épernon. The Parliament of Paris canceled the judgment against him and from that time on he served in many different roles in France until his death in 1661 in Paris.

Five years later, John Epernon was ten years old when his mother died.


JOHN EPERNON SR. married, first, SARA FONDAN REMON, about 1656, in the Channel Isles. She was from the Isle of Jersey, born there about 1637, the daughter of Jean Remon and Sara Fondan of Glamorganshire, near Neath, in Wales.

Sara died in Glamorganshire, Wales, most likely in 1670.

Acacia hand graphic


  1. Jean-Louis was born about 1655. He married in England, about 1684, (1) Anne-Catherine de la Vallett (b. about 1661). They had the following child: Jean-Jacques Delanadale Esperon, b. about 1687, London, England. Jean-Louis married 2d, in London, about 1715, Anne Magdelaine (b. about 1695, London, England). Jean-Louis died 1687 in England, at 32 years of age. [Another lineage states Jean-Louis was born in 1657.]

  2. JOHN JR. was born about 1659 in Glamorgan, Wales. He married Elizabeth Alexander. They emigrated to America in 1675. He died in 1709 in Kent County, Virginia.

  3. Charles was born in 1660. Some lineages state he remained in England; others say he went to Virginia. [Another lineage has Charles born in 1662.]


JOHN EPERNON SR. remarried, ELIZABETH BEARD, on 25 May 1671 at St. Andrew, Plymouth, Devon, England. She was christened in Bodmin, Cornwall, England, on 19 June 1652, the daughter of Henry Beard and Aves/Avis (b. 1620, England).


John Sr. and Elizabeth (Beard) emigrated to the American colonies in 1675 with his son and wife, Elizabeth (Alexander). Elizabeth (Beard) was at the time pregnant with her first child, William. The family landed in Maryland and got themselves to New Kent County, Virginia, where they had other children and lived there until the mid-1700s when the children dispersed to other counties.


Generation 7

JOHN EPERNON JR. (grandson of Bernard) was born about 1659 in Glamorgan, Wales.

John Jr. married ELIZABETH ALEXANDER in the Channel Isle of Jersey, Great Britain, about 1674. She was born in St. Peters Parish, Isle Jersey, Channel Islands, Great Britain, in 1643, the daughter of Philippe Alexander & Elizabeth le Roux Le Febvre.

John Jr. and his wife emigrated in 1675 with his father and stepmother to Maryland, and thence to New Kent Co., Virginia. John Jr. would become the American patriarch of the David Epperson branch of Eppersons, of Albemarle County, Virginia. A book about this lineage has been written by Edna Epperson Brinkman; please read it with caution as there are some wrong data.

Both died in Virginia: John about 1709, Elizabeth's death date unknown.




Database: Bob Epperson.
Much information on Mr. Epperson's website was culled from Vaughn E. Epperson's data submitted to the LDS Library in Salt Lake City, UT.
I have chosen to use the lineage charts as presented by Bob Epperson. He cites as his major resource the Family Group Sheets research of Vaughan Elmo Epperson. There are errors in Bob Epperson's synopsis, as there are in all the lineages I have consulted. His family data may also have errors. Frankly, between his and the others, there are many inconsistencies. I do believe, however, that several of the other lineages I reference here, have used Bob Epperson's lineage as their foundation as I have noticed much of the wording is just as it appears in this lineage, and many of them do not reference either Vaughan or Bob's work. So, it's a free-for-all out there, it seems.

Database: Another link: Bob Epperson #2.

Epperson-L Archives: Jim White, on Rootsweb.
See VEE notes near bottom of page for some sources.

Epperson-Clark Genealogy Website, with family tree. This file doesn't lead to our lineage but has a lot of names going back in time.

Database: All of our Roots and Branches.

Database of Elaine Hensley; on Bernard de Nogaret de la Valette.

Fillers, Lisa. Jean-Louis de Nogaret de la Valette - duc d'Épernon. This is a good article in Helium.

Kimbrell, Carolyn S. Epernon Family Tree, website on Genealogy


Epperson, John, death, 1689: See Vestry Book, St. Peters pp. 19, 20. John Epernon/Epecon/Epperson.

Epperson, Vaughn Elmo. Descendancy Chart and Family Group Records. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (1996 and 1997).

Epperson Sr., John. Married Sara Fondan Remon, 1656, Channel Isles: See LDS Film B0394724, p. 86.
Epperson Sr., John. Married Elizabeth Beard, 1671, Devon, England: See Batch M001832, Source 823684 F. [Is this at the LDS Library in Salt Lake City, Utah?]

Épernon, Jean Louis de Nogaret de La Valette, duc d'. Letter to Thomas Jefferson from Francis Adrian Van der Kemp, enclosing Synopsis of a Proposed Book, 18 February 1812. See Papers of Thomas Jefferson: Retirement Series 4:500-508 (esp. p. 504).

Épernon, Bernard. Caption: Bernard de Foix de La Valette, duc d'Épernon (mort en 1661), lieutenant général de Guyenne. Email:


Boureau, Alain. The lord's first night: the myth of the droit de cuissage. See pp. 96-97.

** Guizot, Francois M., and Mme Henriette Elizabeth de Witt. The History of France from the earliest times to the year 1789. Vol. 4; pp. 22-26, and others. ** This is good.

Maugier, George Maugier. "Kin", who emigrated in 1675 (from the Channel Isle of Jersey and also of Hampshire, old England) to Newbury, America. He sold property to Peter Valett in 1674/5). This is most likely about John Epecon (Epperson). Check this at the LDS Family History Library, Salt Lake City, UT. British Film #0394727, pp. 96ff.

** Vaughan, Robert. The British quarterly review (Vols. 59-60) pp. 216-17 (esp. 216). ** This is good.

St. Peter's Parish (Virginia). Vestry Book (4 May 1698). See p. 20, "posessioning group". On John Epecon (Epernon/Epperson).


Le duc d'Epernon - L'Archimignon, Jean-Luc Chartier, Société des Écrivains, 1999. ISBN 284434013X.

Le duc d'Epernon, by Hélène Tierchant, Pygmalion, 2002. ISBN 2857047320.

Brinkman, Edna Epperson. The Story of David Epperson and His Family of Albemarle County, Virginia (1933).
Brinkman quotes: Mr. Girard, Sec'y. to the Duke of Épernon, The History of the Life of the Duke of Espernon (1659); translated into English by Charles Cotton (1670).

Epperson, Vaughn Elmo. Descendancy Chart and Family Group Records. LDS Library, Salt Lake City, UT. Information provided 1996 and 1997.

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Presentation © 24 January 2012
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