By Gilly Carr
Charles Grihault, of French nationality, was born in the Vale parish in Guernsey on 10 June 1903. There is some uncertainty about the exact year of his birth because while all of his Occupation-period paperwork in Jersey Archives records the year of his birth as 1903, his Aliens card states that his year of birth was 1905. Either this was a mistake or else Grihault was making some attempt to change his identity.
Quite why this might have been is revealed by archival records that show that although Grihault came to Jersey in 1923, he was sentenced by the Royal Court to two months’ hard labour, to be followed by five years banishment, in April 1924. On 17 June 1924 he left for France to begin his banishment. We do not know what his offence was.
At the time of the registration of Islanders in 1941, Grihault was back in Jersey. He was working as a greengrocer and was married. He comes to our attention because, on 7 January 1942, and now working as a mechanic, he was convicted by the Court of Field Command 515 for receiving stolen property and given a sentence of 4 months’ imprisonment. He was sentenced and deported with Ronald Staples, Robert Bell and Robert Green, suggesting that the four men were working together. As they were sentenced by the German court, we can assume that the alleged theft was against the Germans.
Grihault was deported on 5 February 1942 and arrived at Caen Prison the following day, on 6 February. On 7 May 1942 he was released and returned to Jersey. He was thus in the island at the time of the mass deportations of February 1943, which targeted among others those who had been previously convicted. After failing to show up for deportation, Grihault was arrested and put in prison on 23 February. He was deported on 25 February 1943 to Kreuzburg Internment Camp, arriving at Ilag VIII Tost on 1 March 1943, an internment camp through which only a small number of Channel Islands are known to have passed. He survived the war.
The family of Charles Grihault are invited to get in touch with the Frank Falla Archive if they have information to share about his story.
Charles Grihault’s Occupation registration card, Jersey Archives ref. Dep/1/460.
Charles Grihault’s Occupation registration form, Jersey Archives ref. Dep/5/244 and 245.
Charles Gruahult’s Aliens registration card, Jersey Archives ref. D/S/B4/25.
Charles Grihault’s record, political prisoner register copyright Jersey Archives ref. D/AG/B7/7.
Charles Grihault’s court records, copyright Jersey Archives ref. D/Z/H6/3/18.
Charles Grihault’s records from Caen Prison, Calvados Archives ref. 1664 w 33.