Miss M.E. Powel


It is fortunate that when time serves, the Historical Society of Newport can and does hold out friendly hands. She cherishes already in her museum and on her bookshelves many tangible records of our French Allies, and in the dooryard stands a seedling white lilac, child of that sturdy bush still growing on Church Street, the gift of some of the French officers to Mrs. Samuel Vernon, in Revolutionary days. But there are some intangible relics of that period under ground that may well demand attention. Last spring, those very young ladies, The Saturday Club, having earlier collected many available accounts of Admiral de Ternay, so far seemingly neglected by their elders, placed upon his grave a triple offering of those white lilac blossoms, bound with tri-color. That in itself was first used by the French officers in Newport, and of these flowers the large spray was in honor of the Admiral, the two smaller to recall two other French officers who lie in unmarked, and it is to be feared, in unknown graves in Trinity yard, Messieurs de Fayolles and de Valernais. To tell the brief story of M. de Fayolles we must search a little. He is possibly the first of the French officers connected with the Revolutionary War to be buried in the soil of Rhode Island.