Corbet James Dauvergne

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Corbet James Dauvergne 1765-1828

Dauvergne's wife Marie Victoire de Rohan

The second son of Charles Dauvergne of St Helier, by his second wife Elisabeth Bandinel, Corbet became a Commander in the Royal Navy and in 1807 he was appointed Acting Governor of Heligoland

He was a half brother of Philippe d'Auvergne, Duc de Bouillon.

HMS Severn

He joined the Royal Navy and was appointed Lieutenant on 20 January 1794. On 19 February 1800 he commanded the Aristocrat a hired armed brig, and captured a French gun-vessel, off Cape Frehel. He was under the command of his half-brother and there is some confusion over whether he or Philippe was in command of the Frigate HMS Severn when she was wrecked in Grouville Bay on 21 December 1804 while on the Jersey station. The Severn ran aground in the bay and all her crew were saved. Marshall's Royal Naval Biography says "if we mistake not he was the senior officer on board that ship when she was driven ashore and wrecked".

In 1801 he was appointed Maitre des Chasses (Master of the Hunt) in Jersey, the last person to hold this office.

In 1807 as First Lieutenant on the Majestic, the flagship of Admiral Russell, he was present at the capture of Heligoland from the Danes.

Admiral Russell wrote in his dispatch:

"The Governor sent out a flag of truce, desiring that an officer might be sent to treat on articles of capitulation. I accordingly dispatched Lord Viscount Falkland and Lieutenant Dauvergne (the First on this ship). At 2 pm they returned with articles of capitulation, which I immediately ratified. I have appointed Lieutenant Dauvergne as Acting Governor, until their Lordships' pleasure is known, and I beg leave to add that from his perfect knowledge of both Services and his zeal and loyalty and high sense of honour I know no seaman more competent to the trust".

Dauvergne's appointment was confirmed, along with a promotion to Commander. He was instructed:

"The internal government of the island should be continued as it exists as present without any alteration, and the gains of the inhabitants either from fisheries or pilotage should be given up to them without tax or defalcation. All the militiamen, amounting to about 500, who will take the oath of obedience, may retain their arms."

Dauvergne was a popular Governor and was presented with a silver teapot by senior islanders when he left in 1808. He commanded the sloop Autumn and was promoted to post rank on 1 August 1811.

In 1823, at the age of 58, he married Marie Victoire de Rohan. She was the illegitimate daughter of Ferdinand de Rohan, Archbishop of Cambrai, and of Charlotte Stuart, herself the illegitimate daughter of Charles Stuart (Bonnie Prince Charlie). Corbet Dauvergne died without heirs on 2 FRebruary 1828.

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