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Pinel family page


This fine gentleman is sea captain John Pinel. A descendant, Bob Pinel, saw a picture which was already in Jerripedia's gallery of sea captains and recognised it as having been taken at the same sitting as this photograph of Capt Pinel on his own. He sent us the new picture from Australia noting that Capt Pinel was his great-great-grandfather, born Jersey 1844, died Liverpool 1909. The quality of the group photograph, believed to have been taken on the vessel Plaia is not good, but there seems little doubt that it is the same man on the same occasion

Record Search

Direct links to lists of baptisms, marriages and burials for the Pinel family can be found under Family Records opposite. If you want to search for records for a spelling variant of Pinel, or for any other family name, just click below on the first letter of the family name you are interested in. This will open a new tab in your browser giving you a list of family names beginning with that letter, for which there are baptism records in our database of half a million church and public registry records.

You can also select marriages or burials. Select the name you want and when the list of records is displayed you can easily refine the search, choosing a single parish, given name(s) and/or start and end dates.

The records are displayed 30 to a page, but by selecting the yellow Wiki Table option at the top left of the page you can open a full, scrollable list. This list will either be displayed in a new tab or a pop-up window. You may have to edit the settings of your browser to allow pop-up windows for For the small number of family names for which a search generates more than 1,500 records you will have to refine your search (perhaps using start or end dates) to reduce the number of records found.


If you can help with information about the Pinel family, please contact, using Jerripedia as the subject of your email. We are particularly interested in information which will help create further family trees, family histories and photographs

A blue link anywhere in the text will lead you to another page with more information on this family

Origin of Surname

Although (see below) it is not clear where the family originated, it is widely recognised in France that the name is probably derived from pin, the French for pine tree (Latin pinum), and that the first holder of the name lived in an area of such trees. Where surnames are derived in this manner it is, of course, quite possible that people living in far distant parts of France could have been given the name at the same time.

Were the Pinels Basque mercenaries? Traditionally the family Pinel in Jersey are thought to have originated in the village of the same name south of Cherbourg in Normandy. However, extensive research by Winston Pinel has thrown considerable doubt on this theory. He has concluded that the Pinels are more likely to have had ancestors in the Basque country which straddles the Spanish-French border. The origins of many family and place names are lost in the mists of time and in many examples in Normandy of families and villages or towns sharing the same name it often cannot be determined which came first. Winston Pinel believes that the Pinels may have emerged from a village named Pinel de Bray near Tarragona in Spain and moved north to fight as mercenaries with William the Conqueror.

Payne's Armorial of Jersey

In Normandy, in early times, the family of Pinel ranked very high among the nobility of that province. In the Record, erected by M. Leopold Delisle, and placed in the church of Dives, in Normandy, in August, 1062, of the names of the companions of William I, that of Raoul Pinel finds an honourable place.

In the Extente of 1331, several members of the family are mentioned as jurymen or landholders in different parishes. By the same record it appears that Thomas Pinel was Seigneur of Melesches, in the reign of John, but that the estate lapsed to the Crown, by the adherence of its owner to the Norman side, at the period of the disjunction of the Duchy from the English monarchy.

Among the French emigrant nobles who retired to Jersey at the time of the French Revolution of 1789, was Charles Pinel, Chevalier, Seigneur-Comte du Chesnay, and Grand Cross of St Louis.


As borne by Charles Pinel, of Trinity: Per pale, argent and or, an eagle displayed, standing on a billet, raguly, azure.

Quartering : Per fesse, argent and or ; in chief, a dexter-hand clenched, issuant, ppr., cuffed, of the second ; in base, a mullet of the first.

Early records

In a charter of between 1160 and 1170, a William Pinel of Jersey, who was married to the sister of Ranulfo de Bocleio (A Latinised version of a French name), gave land at Turgisville in Normandy, to the Abbey of St Saviour in the same Duchy. His sons William and Hamelin are shown living in Jersey around 1160-1170 in Carticulaire No 206.

Earlier records, which have not been directly linked to the Jersey family show Raoul Pinel in the Dives record of Companions of William the Conqueror in 1066; Ralph Pinel in the Domesday Book of Essex in 1086; and Rollo Pinel, Baron of Normandy, in the First Crusade in 1096.

The Pinel family must have been substantial landowners in the island at the end of the 12th Century because Thomas Pinel is shown in an Extente as being Seigneur of Melesches in St Lawrence in about 1199 and William Pinel was a Knight and Seigneur of Fief Pinel in St John, with Tesson Mill, until 1204 when it was confiscated by King John because he maintained allegiance to Normandy at the time of the split with Jersey.

Pinels appear regularly in Extentes and Assize Rolls in the 14th century. Philip, Colin and Laurence are recorded in 1309; Geoffray (St Saviour), Robert (Fief d’Orville, St Peter), and William (juryman for St Lawrence) in 1331.

William and Radulp Pinel are shown as archers in a 1338 record for Mont Orgueil Castle.


  • Pinel, c1172
  • Pinell 1607
  • Pyne1, 1274
  • Pennell (USA immigrants)

Family records


Family trees

Note that there is some overlap between the trees below, but all have been
included because some include extra information; follow different descents
further down the tree, or have been provided by different sources
This second set of trees was researched by Winston Pinel and each tree links
to one or more of the others. There is a considerable overlap with the set
above and we are progressively adding links between the two sets of trees to
provide a complete family tree for the Pinels of Jersey and the emigrant families


Church records


Family histories


Newspaper records


Great War service


Family wills

Family homes

Family businesses

Family album

Family gravestones

Click on any image to see a larger version. See the Jerripedia gravestone image collection page for more information about our gravestone photographs


  • Worldwide Pinel site, mainly in French but with some sections in English. The site is under development and difficult to navigate
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