CROUSE Family Treasure

by Kathryn Doyle (3/13/2008)

The CGS ancestral chart collection is an eclectic mix of styles and materials that represent families from a variety of times and places. Unrolling one is always a surprise; you never know what you will find. Lavinia Schwarz opened a chart and was startled to find it was her mother’s CRESAP family. She had known of its existence but had never before seen a copy.

But one chart literally brought the proceedings to a halt as everyone gathered round to admire it. “The CROUSE Family Chart with Related Families of Bradshaw – Grieve – McTaggart in the Napanee District showing the Ackerman, Fairbairn, McLeod & Morden connections” is a genealogical treasure and a work of art.

The chart is perfectly symmetrical in form and content, due to the featured sibling marriages: two CROUSE brothers who married BRADSHAW sisters. The chart is divided into thirds. The center panel contains the names, dates, biographical information and photographs of the subject couples. The left panel gives the ancestry of the Crouse brothers; the right panel traces the lineage of the Bradshaw sisters. Two columns of oval portraits of the couples’ siblings separate the panels, Crouse on the left, Bradshaw on the right.

The subject couples are (top) Richard Crouse (1877-1922), who was the eldest child of his family, and wife Margaret Bradshaw (1878-1961); (bottom) George Crouse (1879-1948) and Ethel Bradshaw (1883-1919). Also included are the names and birth dates of their children.

The left panel of the chart features Oliver Crouse (1851-1924) and Emma McTaggart (1855-1929) and lists the names of their 12 children, their full birth and death dates, names of spouses (or if unmarried). The left side also includes the names of the family members of the previous two Crouse generations and one generation of the McTaggarts.

The very top of the left panel of the chart is a biography of the earliest named Crouse, “Oliver CROUSE (1777-1841) the Yeoman” who is the great-grandfather of the two featured brothers.

According to tradition, Oliver Crouse was a tall, slim, fair, adventurer born in the U.S.A. of Dutch descent. As a young man he settled in the Bay of Quinte area in the early 1800’s.” A full description of his land records, marriage to Maria Nestor, service in the War of 1812 and death are contained in the account.

The right panel of the chart describes the family of the featured sisters – Charles Bradshaw (1852-1926) and Georgina Grieve (1852-1929), their children, the two previous Bradshaw generations and the parents and siblings of Georgina (Ina) Grieve. The top of the panel is the biography of David Bradshaw (1798-1869) “the Pioneer.”

The bottom central portion of the chart reads “Lithography = Mortimer Limited, Ottawa, Ontario. Reproductions – Pontiac Printshop Ltd., Shawville, Quebec. Compiled, Designed and Published by Charles Gordon Crouse, Shawville, Quebec – March 1967 – this is No. ____ of 300.” The number was not written in.

Photographs courtesy of Colleen Huntley.

Addendum: The Genealogical Society of Utah has twice “filmed” this chart, in 1976 and 1974. The microfilm reels are: FHL US/CAN Film 928176, Item 27 and FHL US/CAN Film 962154, Item 4, respectively. [Information from the Family History Library Catalog,]

CGS Ancestral Chart Project

by Kathryn Doyle (3/11/2008)

Like most genealogical societies, CGS has received many donated items over the years, and as is usually the case, things sometimes get “lost” in the archives. One of the benefits of moving last year was the rediscovery of some 100 ancestral charts of assorted size and vintage. Volunteers had carefully labeled each chart with a primary surname title and stored them alphabetically in eight long boxes. Many hours had been spent creating a surname index of all names found on the charts. A card file is available in the CGS Library where one can look up a surname of interest and find a card listing each of the donated charts that feature the surname in question.

Despite the elaborate surname index, the charts were a seldom-used resource in the library. Unless a surname is extremely rare, there is little practical reason to use the index cards or to examine a chart, based on surname alone.

In July 2007, 14 volunteers met at the home of CGS President, Jane Lindsey, for a potluck work party to search through the charts. The purpose of the session was to examine and abstract information from as many of the charts as possible with the intent of creating an online database so searchers could more precisely determine a chart’s relevance to their research. Unfortunately, the work proved more tedious than anticipated and even a second session later in the summer proved inadequate to finish the job. Several more charts remain to be examined before the information can be collated and put into a database. However, a couple of the charts warrant further attention in the blog. Stay tuned.

In case you missed yesterday’s meeting

by Kathryn Doyle (3/9/2008)

If you missed yesterday’s California Genealogical Society membership meeting, head on over to Steve’s Genealogy Blog and read his detailed account of the proceedings. The meeting was standing-room-only at the Oakland Regional Family History Center, where 80+ members heard Assistant Director, Margery Bell, update members on the amazing new research opportunities offered by the LDS. An up-to-date calendar of the society’s events and meetings is always available through the “Calendar” tab on the CGS Web site or from the “Google Calendar” button on the right side of this blog.