Monday, 12 November 2007

Cruwys of Mariansleigh

I was very pleased to find in my inbox when I returned from holiday an e-mail from Samantha Hill in New Zealand. Sam is a regular reader of Cruwys News and has been researching her Cruwys family for a number of years. Sam is descended from the Mariansleigh Cruwys family. She is the great-granddaughter of George Herbert Cruwys and Anna Agnes Jackson who married in Deptford, London, in 1899. We have had a most useful exchange of information and Sam has been able to fill me in on some of the later generations of her family. She has also solved the long-standing mystery of Jill Cruwys, the England cricketer, who played in the England team, captained by Rachael Heyhoe-Flint, which won the first Women’s Cricket World Cup in 1973. I'd never previously been able to fit Jill into any of my existing trees as the names of her parents were not known. Sam tells me that Jill was the youngest child of Leslie Jackson Cruwys and Margaret Elizabeth Gosling. She is the first cousin of Sam's mother. Jill Cruwys tragically died of breast cancer in 1990 at the age of 47.

The Mariansleigh Cruwys family is the most numerous of all the surviving Cruwys branches. Unfortunately it has not been possible to trace the tree further back than the late 1700s as no baptism has yet been found for the earliest known ancestor George Cruwys, a mason, who died in 1856 in Mariansleigh. George married twice. His first wife was Ann Eastmond, who died in 1841. They produced six children. George’s second wife was Mary Ann Bartlett. They married in 1842, and the marriage certificate informs us that George's father was George Cruwys, a malster. We know from the 1851 census that George junior was born in Mariansleigh. His birth date varies from source to source and he was born any time between about 1781 and 1788. Unfortunately the Mariansleigh parish registers are not very well preserved and there are gaps for this critical period. I’ve also had searches done of the Bishop's Transcripts, but again there are gaps and no record of George's baptism has been found. The best hope now is to find a living Cruwys descendant from this tree who is willing to take a DNA test.

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