Tuesday 19 June 2012

New editor of JOGG

The following announcement was written by Dr Ann Turner and is reproduced with her kind permission:

The editorial board of the Journal of Genetic Genealogy (JoGG)  is very pleased to announce that Dr. Turi King has accepted the position of editor.

Dr. King's PhD thesis topic was The relationship between British surnames and Y-chromosomal haplotypes and she is also co-author (with George Redmonds and David Hey) of the book Surnames, DNA and Family History. Dr. King is currently a Research Fellow in the Department of Genetics and the School of  Historical Studies at the University of Leicester, where she is the project manager for an interdisciplinary project The Impact of Diasporas on the Making of Britain. Turi has worked on the Y chromosome since 1996 and has concentrated on surnames, the Y chromosome and genetic genealogy (among other studies) for over ten years. More details about her background and interests can be found at http://www2.le.ac.uk/departments/genetics/people/king/turi.

Dr. King will assume her duties in the fall. In the meantime, prospective authors may send manuscripts to me DNACousins at aol.com so they will be in the pipeline when she begins the process of sending articles out for peer review. The current guidelines can be found at http://www.jogg.info/authors.htm, although Dr. King is at liberty to revise these. Our goal is to make JoGG a respected and even a favored destination for authors and readers alike.

Monday 18 June 2012

Laura May Davy Cruwys

Leslie Nixon has sent me some wonderful old photos from her collection. Leslie is the grand-daughter of William Crawford Cruwys (1873-1938) and Laura May Davy (1878-1964). William and Laura were both born in Prince Edward Island, Canada, but moved to American in 1892 and settled in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The first picture below is of Laura May Davy Cruwys and was taken in April 1947.
The second picture below is of Laura May and her youngest son William Fraser Cruwys (1910-1967). It was taken in the winter of 1939/40.
The other photos from Leslie's collection will be put up in the Cruwys genealogy group on Facebook.

© Debbie Kennett 2012

Thursday 14 June 2012

Irish surname maps

Howard Mathieson, the surname mapping expert in the Guild of One-Name Studies, has been experimenting with a new mapping service. I was one of the guinea pigs who tested his new service and he has very kindly provided me with some maps showing the distribution of the surname Cruise in Ireland using data extracted from Griffith's Valuation 1847-1864. You will need to click on the maps to enlarge them and to see the fine detail. The first map shows the distribution of the Cruise surname with a backdrop of an historic map of Ireland. There are two distinct clusters of the surname with one cluster in Dublin and another around Galway Bay in County Mayo and County Clare. Some Cruise researchers with ancestors from western Ireland have stories that their ancestor was a Spaniard by the name of Dal a Cruze who was shipwrecked off County Clare after the Spanish Armada. The surname was then supposedly anglicised to Cruise. There is a place in County Clare by the name of Spanish Point where the survivors from the wrecked Spanish ships came into land in 1588, but it seems that they were all executed by Sir Turlough O'Brien of Liscannor and Boethius Clancy, the High Sheriff of County Clare. I suspect there is little truth in the story of a Spanish origin but would be happy to be proved wrong. The Cruises in the Dublin area are of Anglo-Norman origin. They arrived in Ireland around the time of the Anglo-Norman invasion of Ireland in 1169.
The second map below shows the distribution of the Cruise surname with the pins overlaid on a physical map of Ireland.
The final map below shows a close up of the distribution of the surname in Dublin.
Howard is now offering a bespoke surname mapping service. He is able to produce maps for England and Wales, Scotland, Ireland and the United States. Howard can generate maps using his own datasets or he can generate maps from your own data. You can read more about this new service on Howard's Surname Origins website.

© Debbie Kennett 2012
Maps © Howard Mathieson and Surname Origins 2012

Antonio Cruse, seaman

Maggie Jack has kindly written to advise me of an interesting reference she found to a sailor by the name of Antonio Cruse who was sadly drowned at sea. Antonio was one of the crew of the Grace Darling of Blyth in Scotland which was wrecked on 28th February 1874 after losing its mainmast in treacherous conditions off the Aberdeenshire coast. Intrigued by the story, I trawled through a few newspaper reports in the British Library 19th Century Newspaper Collection and elsewhere and found a number of accounts of the shipwreck, a selection of which I've transcribed below. Antonio Cruse was from South America and was either 27 or 37 at the time of his death but I've not been able to find out anything more about him. If anyone has any further information do get in touch.

Disasters on the Scotch coast
[From the Liverpool Albion, March 7]
Great consternation was caused at Shields on Sunday by receipt of intelligence of the loss of the barque Grace Darling, belonging to Blyth, on the Scotch coast, near Fraserburgh, with all the crew except one man. The barque left Shields only last Tuesday, bound to Swinemunde. The following is a list of the crew:- Ralph Davidson, captain; James Graham, mate, South Shields; Geo. W. Girling, boatswain, Jarrow; Wm. Townsend, cook and steward, South Shields; John Claxton, South Shields; George Horn, North Shields, Edward Stevenson, Norway; Thomas Nelson, South Shields; Antonio Cruse, seaman; Patrick Chapman, seaman; and William Barker, apprentice, Blyth. The Grace Darling belonged to R. Richardson and partners, of Blyth, and registered at North Shields. Four of the crew of the Stoneheaven lifeboat, which put off to aid the Grace Darling, were lost through the capsizing of the boat.
Source: Grey River Argus, Volume XV, Issue 1803, 23 May 1874, page 4

Disastrous Shipwrecks
The barque Grace Darling, of Amble, was totally wrecked near Rattray Head, on the Aberdeenshire coast, late on Friday night, and out of a crew of 15 men 14 were drowned. The Grace Darling passed Stonehaven on Friday afternoon flying signals of distress. The Stonehaven life-boat, manned by two of the regular crew and 10 volunteers, went out, but was unable to contend against the gale, and was driven north to Aberdeen, where, in attempting to make the harbour, she upset. She immediately righted, but four of her crew were drowned. The poor fellows, buoyed by their cork belts, were seen making signals for help, but none could be rendered, and one by one they were lost to sight in the heavy sea. Meanwhile the Grace Darling was driven before the wind on the rocks at Rattray Head, where she broke in pieces. Two of the bodies of her crew were recovered next day. Another vessel, the James, of Inverness, is supposed to have been lost with all hands.
Source: Morning Post, 2 March 1874

Dreadful wreck and loss of 16 lives
A telegram from Dundee states that six of the crew of the Grace Darling have been washed ashore. On Friday the barque was seen driving past Stonehaven, flying signals of distress. So stormy was the sea that only two of the regular crews of the lifeboat would go on board, the other ten being volunteers. On getting outside it was seen that the brave fellows were unable to contend against the fury of the gale, and that the boat was being blown rapidly to northwards. Instructions were at once telegraphed to Aberdeen to keep a sharp look-out for both lifeboat and ship, but the Aberdeen lifeboat was not launched, and nothing was done to meet the emergency. The ship and lifeboat soon appeared. The former had by this time lowered her distress signals, and she drove on to the north. The lifeboat made for the harbour, and in attempting to enter was upset. She righted immediately, but four of the crew were carried out to sea and drowned. Had the Aberdeen lifeboat been in readiness it is believed that all could have been saved, as the poor fellows, buoyed up by their cork belts, were seen for nearly half an hour, holding up their hands and crying for help. The Grace Darling meanwhile sped on, and after sailing 30 miles north from Aberdeen she struck the rocks two miles north of Rattray Head, some distance south from Fraserburgh. She soon became a total wreck, and out of a crew of 17 men 16 were drowned. The vessel was laden with coke. The wreck took place late on Friday night, and next morning the beach was strewed with wreck.
Source: The Huddersfield Daily Chronicle, 3 March 1874

Loss of the Grace Darling and ten of her crew
When the Grace Darling passed Peterhead it was about ten o’clock at night. After a good deal of opposition on the part of the wives, a picked crew was got to man the life-boat. Every other precaution was taken upon the receipt of the telegram from Aberdeen, that the circumstances suggested. By the time the lifeboat was ready to start the Grace Darling was off the North Head. The boat put out to sea, but owing to the distance between them and the vessel, and the darkness of the night, they were obliged to abandon the quest, after being out for a couple of hours. Nothing more was seen or heard of the ill-fated vessel till early next morning, when a fisherman found one of the crew lying half-dead on the Sands at Powkburn, about two miles north of Rattray Head. This man, Edwin Stephenson, a native of Norway, was the only survivor of the crew of eleven men, including the captain. From the statement of this man it appears that the vessel was driven ashore about two o’clock in the morning. When no assistance reached them from Peterhead, and as their means of burning signals were exhausted, and the vessel was in a sinking state, the captain resolved to run the vessel upon the sands, expecting that she would hang together till daylight or till some assistance should arrive. But in less than ten minutes after striking the sands she became a total wreck. Stephenson floated ashore on a piece of wreck, and all the others – 10 in number – were drowned.  The Grace Darling was a barque of 366 tons register, loaded with coals from North Shields for Swinemunde. She was owned by Robert Richardson, Amble, Northumberland. She left North Shields on the 24th ult., and on the following day (Wednesday) had her mainmast carried away in the gale. They then put back, and on Friday sighted land south of Aberdeen, when they hoisted signals of distress, being in a sinking condition. All the bodies were washed ashore and removed to St Coombs. The following is the list of the crew:-

Ralph Davidson, master, 38 years, Blyth, married.
James Graham 25 years, London, mate, married.
William Townsend, 34, Exeter, cook and A.B. married
John Claxton, 21, Norfolk, A.B., unmarried.
George Horn, 26, Woodbridge, A.B.
Thomas Nelson, 20, Finland, A.B.
George W. Girling, 27, Newcastle, boatswain, married.
Antonio Cruse, 27, South America, A.B.
Patrick Chapman, 18, Londonderry, O.S.
William Baker, 18, apprentice, Blyth.

            Edwin Stephenson, 29, Norway, A.B.
Source: The Huddersfield Daily Chronicle, 3 March 1874

© Debbie Kennett 2012

Thursday 7 June 2012

The Surnames Handbook

I have now finally submitted the manuscript of my second book The Surnames Handbook to my publisher, the History Press. The book is scheduled to be published in the UK in October and I have been told by the History Press that they have selected it as one of their key titles for the autumn.

Surnames have effectively taken over my life for the last year, and in the last couple of months I've been working on this book for very long hours seven days a week. When I accepted the suggestion of writing the book I hadn't realised quite what a marathon task it would be, simply because I hadn't quite anticipated the sheer volume of literature that had already been published on the subject. It's been a huge amount of work but I'm pleased with the way the book has turned out.This is essentially the book that I would have liked to have had available when I started out on my own surname research. It's intended as a practical guide to all the different aspects of surname research, but I've also provided some background on surnames in general, drawing on the research from all the many different disciplines that are now involved in surname research, emphasising in particular the contribution that can be made by the family historian. The book includes links to hundreds of relevant websites, an extensive bibliography, and numerous detailed appendices with information on all the essential resources for a surname study both online and offline. The text is supported by a long list of 190 references. The contents are listed below.
Foreword by Derek Palgrave 
Chapter 1: The history of surnames
Chapter 2: The classification of surnames 
Chapter 3: Variants and deviants 
Chapter 4: Surname mapping 
Chapter 5: Surname frequency 
Chapter 6: Has it been done before? 
Chapter 7: Laying the foundations - the key datasets 
Chapter 8: Surname origins - pre-1600 resources 
Chapter 9: DNA and surnames 
Chapter 10: One-name studies 
Appendix A: Genealogy websites 
Appendix B: Surname websites 
Appendix C: Lay subsidy rolls 
Appendix D: Organisations and journals 
Appendix E: Linguistic resources 
Appendix F: Place-name resources 
Appendix G: Population statistics 
© Debbie Kennett 2012