The Vuille family has its legal origin in the village of La Sagne, in the upper part of the canton of Neuchâtel. Various branches subsequently acquired citizenship in other parts of the canton, as well as further afield.
The name Vuille is probably derived from the Germanic forename Wilhelm, itself the combination of two words meaning "will" and "helmet". The forename became Guillaume in French, and Vuillaume in the Franco-Provencale dialect. The earliest recorded form of the surname in the canton of Neuchâtel (1355) is Vuilloz, and several variant spellings and pronunciations existed, including Vouille and Wille.
One branch of the La Sagne family became known as Vuille-Bille or Vuille-dit-Bille and some descendants of this line officially shortened their name to Bille in 1822. The spelling of another branch perpetuated the spelling Wille, while a branch which emigrated to Germany also saw their surname changed to Wille, which is more easily pronounced in German than Vuille.
Our Vuille families
Jean-Marc has three separate Vuille lines in his ancestry.
Jehan Vuilloz (or Vuille), who owned land in La Sagne in 1436, was the father of Jeannin Vuille, mayor of the village of La Sagne in 1495. Jeannin had a son Henry and our line passes from him to his son Jehan, grandson Henry, and great-grandson Guillaume. Little is known about these early members of the family except their names, which were recorded as land and rights passed from father to son. The names of their wives are never mentioned.
Guillaume had a son David Vuille, who married Susanne Comtesse in the early 1600s - the first recorded female ancestor in this line. Their son Jean was a parish counsellor at La Sagne and married Bendichte Grandguillaume-Perrenoud. Jean and Bendichte had at least two sons, including Abraham Vuille, who married Marie Vuille (daughter of Isaac) at La Sagne on 13 December 1699.
Abraham and Marie's son Jean-Louis Vuille was cbaptised at La Sagne on 10 June 1703 and married Susanne Matile there on 26 February 1743. He was the last child recorded at La Sagne with four godparents: below his entry in the baptismal register the pastor added a note that henceforth it was no longer possible to have more than one godfather and godmother and that extravagant baptism feasts were strictly forbidden.
Jean-Louis and Susanne had twelve children, all born in La Sagne. Their fourth child, David-Louis Vuille, was born on 7 September 174, and married Marianne Vuille in La Sagne on 25 September 1804. They had three children, including Julie Vuille, who was born in La Sagne on 30 October 1811 and married Gustave Perrenoud there on 6 August 1831.
Jean-Marc's second Vuille line starts with David Vuille, whose parentage is unknown, but who had a son Jean-Henri Vuille born in about 1666. Jean-Louis had the unusual nickname "Pain Blanc" ("white bread") which was sometimes added to his surname. He married Anne-Marie Humbert-Droz-dit-Laurent in La Sagne on 6 November 1700 and died in 1758 at the advanced age of 92.
Jean-Henri and Anne-Marie had four children, including Friderich Vuille, (also known as Frédéric) who was baptised in Les Ponts-de-Martel on 13 September 1716 and married Esabeau Matthey-Prévôt in La Sagne on 22 July 1749. Esabeau died in 1753 and Frédéric then married Judith-Marie Descoeudres in La Sagne on 22 June 1754.
Frédéric and Judith-Marie had a son, Frédéric-Louis Vuille, who was baptised in La Sagne on 26 January 1757 and married Susanne-Esther Grandguillaume-Perrenoud in Les Ponts-de-Martel on 10 October 1775. Frédéric-Louis and Susanne-Esther had five children and their second child Marianne Vuille, who was born in La Sagne on 10 April 1778, married her remote cousin David-Louis Vuille in La Sagne on 25 September 1804.
Jean-Marc's third Vuille line originated in the canton of Neuchâtel, but spent at least a couple of generations in or near Renan in the canton of Bern.
Daniel, son of Abram Vuille married Madelaine, daughter of Henri Vuille, in about 1750, probably in Renan or St-Imier. Their relationship to each other and to the other branches of the Vuille family remains to be established. The couple had three children, all born in Renan, including Daniel-Henri Vuille, who was born on 30 November 1751.
Daniel-Henri married Susanne Jacot, presumably in the canton of Bern, and had three known children, who all migrated back to the canton of Neuchâtel. One of these children, Victor-Aimé Vuille, was born in Renan on 31 March 1781 and married Charlotte Pethoud in La Sagne on 9 February 1805. The couple had three children, and after Charlotte's death, Victor-Aimé married a French woman, Marie-Thérèse Labussière in Le Locle in 1831 and had three more children.
Victor-Aimé and Charlotte's oldest child, Justine Vuille, was born in La Sagne on 1 November 1805 and married Philippe-Henri Huguenin-Virchaux in Le Locle on 27 April 1833.