Scattered Chestnuts

A farm in Roulette Township, Pennsylvania
A farm in Roulette Township, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Nicholas T.)

My copy of James Garvin Chastain’s A Brief History of the Huguenots and Three Family Trees (1933) arrived today. Around fifty pages of the book is dedicated to the Chastain family tree. A vast majority of this section discusses the various branches that descended from Pierre the Emigrant who, escaping from France, settled in Virginia in 1700. I am not directly descended from this Chastain line, but towards the end of the section, the author shares information he has on a few scattered Chastain families. There is one particular humble family from Pennsylvania he mentions on page 305.

Scattered Chastain Families

Christian Chastain, born in Alsace-Lorraine about 1830, went to Hesse, Germany. His son Peter came (1850 ?) to Roulette, northwest Pennsylvania. His son Peter, born in 1851 at Roulette, is now 82 years old. And his son, Rev. Louis P. Chastain is now (1933) pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church at Pikeville, Md.

His dates are off, and he has some information wrong (the Chastains were in Germany by 1717 at the latest and, most likely, a few decades earlier than that and were not from Alsace-Lorraine), but there’s no doubt he’s referring to Peter Alexander Chastain I and his son, Peter Alexander Chastain II, my great-great-great and great-great grandfathers. So no new information here, but it is exciting to see my family mentioned on the printed page.

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