The following information about the Rev. PRIOLEAU's is from their descendant, Horry Frost Prioleau, the Pons Culte de Protestant Registry and Essai de monographie de la commune d' EXOUDUN .
Rev. Elisée PRIOLEAU, pastor of Exoudun, is said to have died in 1650 and to be the father of Elisée, also pastor of Exoudun and of Samuel pastor of Poué.
Rev Samuel PRIOLEAU (1615 - 1683) was Pastor at Jonzac in 1637, Niort in 1642, and followed JeanConstans as Pastor at Pons, France, from 1654 to 1683. In 1660, he was for a brief time Pastor at La Rochelle. In Pons, he defended the faith with superhuman courage in the dark days when Louis XIV was being pressed by the Jesuits and clergy to strip the Reformed Churches of the rights granted by the Edict of Nantes. In 1667, Samuel Prioleau was Moderator at the Synod of Pons, where Reformed Church leaders tried to rally support. Later, the title of pastor was denied and they were prohibited from wearing clerical robes. There were many other restrictions imposed. Pastor Prioleau preached boldly in his pulpit against these restrictions. His words were taken down and serious charges were prepared against him by a Father Mayac. In spite of efforts by prominent citizens of Pons, he was condemned, imprisoned for a year, and ordered to pay a fine of 600 pounds to the catholic priests so that they might "pray for the extirpation of heresy". In 1677, he gave "A Huguenot Exhortation" which is reprinted in French and translated into English in the Transactions # 26 of the SC Huguenot Society in 1921. The last years of his life were full of distress. For a short time, he was assisted by his son Elias, just returned from theological studies in Geneva. When he died in 1683, Elias was called to be his successor.
Rev Elias (Elizée) PRIOLEAU (1659 - 1699) was baptized by his father 9 Nov 1664 (page 90 of Pons Culte de Protestant Register). His mother was Jehanne Merlat (Merlac?). His Godfathers seem to be Jehan Garnier, Helie Merlat (or c?) and Samuel Père(?) Priouleau, Godmothers seem to be Rachel Epse Jean Rangeard Sarrazin, Elizabet(h) Merlac(or t?), and Marie (Tante?) Priouleau. He studied theology at Geneva and was Pastor at La Mothe - SaintHeraye after 1678. In 1683, he followed his father as minister at Pons and was subject to the same persecutions. In Feb 1684, DuVigier, Councillor of the Parliament at Bordeaux, charged with looking into religious infractions, came to Pons with 2 monks and demanded all the church papers. One monk, La Roussie, made extracts of all of the Prioleau sermons, distorted them and gave them to the Deputy Commissary. The other, Mayan, who had persecuted the pastor's father, formulated 16 charges against him. These were finally dismissed, but persecutions increased. On 22 Oct 1685, the Edict of Nantes was revoked, protestant churches were ordered destroyed, ministers were ordered to leave France in 15 days, and parents were ordered to present their children for catholic baptism under penalty of a 500 pound fine. Prioleau did not leave at once and organized secret assemblies. On April 15, 1686, his church was battered by a mob and burned to the ground. He escaped to England and stayed there for over a year. He obtained rights of denization to Carolina on April 15, 1687. Having been granted 8 pounds by the King to defray the costs, he sailed for Charles Town with his wife and daughter. It is stated in several books that he brought many from his Pons church with him to Charleston. My investigation of the Pons Registry does not bear this out. That such was not the case will be confirmed by a soon to be published book by Bertrand Van Ruymbeke. At any rate, he arrived in Charleston with a group of Huguenots in 1686 or 1687, some of whom (but not many) may have been from Pons.
"In an old walled cemetery at Medway on a part of the original tract, is a moss-covered slab of marble over the remains of Rev. Elias Prioleau, a native of Pons and Saintonge, one of the Huguenot emigrants who, on the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, came with others to South Carolina. According to a mural tablet erected to his memory in the Huguenot Church, Charelston, he became a minister of that faith, and the stone at Medway also recites this fact, and states that faith, and this family sprang from one of the Dodges of Venice. Miss M. Elise Langley, of Charleston, S. C., has in her possession some interesting documents or mementos of Antoine Prioli, who died in Venice 1632, anf from whom the family sprang. The Rev. Prioleau died at his farm on Black River on the Midway, now Medway, in St. James, Goose Creek, and there his remains repose." Historic Houses of South Carolina, by Harriette Kershaw Leiding, Copyright 1921 by J. B. Lippincott.
See Selected Denization names for the denization of Elias Prioleau (denizations dated April 9, 1687).