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GRAVES & GREAVES FAMILIES OF BEELEY, STEPNEY & MACCLESFIELD, ENGLAND, AND U.S.

WHAT IS KNOWN: Our DNA study has shown that the largest group of Graves and Greaves families in England and America has seemed to be descended from the family of Beeley, Derbyshire (genealogy 228). This group includes the Greaves family of Stepney, London (genealogy 28), the Greaves family of Macclesfield, Cheshire (genealogy 334), and various families of the U.S. (including John Graves of Concord, MA, gen. 166, John Greaves of St. Mary's Co., MD, gen. 247, and Francis Graves of VA, gen. 220).

However, Y-DNA SNP test results in 2017 seem to show that while the many families in this group are definitely descended from a common Greaves ancestor, it may not be the family of Beeley. Looking at the Y-DNA SNP chart for haplogroup R, all the families in this group are descended from SNP U106 (on the left side of the chart. However, the samples for gen. 228 and gen. 334 match each other, and are both from SNP A2150 on the chart. All the other genealogies in this group are through SNP Z381 (to the left of A2150 on the chart). Therefore, two subgroups have been created on the master Y-DNA results table here, one called R1-228a for genealogies 228 and 334, and the other called R1-228b for all other genealogies in this group. Although the agreement of the gen. 228 results with those of gen. 334 is encouraging, it would be better to have a couple other test results in each of these genealogies to confirm the conclusions.

GREAVES FAMILY OF STEPNEY, ENGLAND (GEN. 28)
Research was conducted in the late 1800's in England by Eben Putnam, some of it published as "Notes on the Ancestry of Rear-Admiral Thomas Graves of Charlestown, Mass.", Historical Collections of the Essex Institute, vol. 31, 1895. His research, primarily in wills, provided much information about the Greaves family of Stepney and Limehouse, Middlesex, from which Rear Admiral Thomas Graves of Charlestown, MA was descended.

JOHN GREAVES OF ST. MARY'S CO., MD (Gen. 247) & PETER GREAVES OF GREENHILL, NORTON (Gen. 336)
John Greaves of genealogy 247 was probably born about 1670-1680 in England, based on when his children were born, and died in 1748 in St. Mary's Co., MD. It seems likely that John was a son or grandson of William Greaves (son of Peter Greaves) of genealogy 336. Peter Greaves was probably born about 1570, and was of Greenhill, parish of Norton, County Derby (now suburban Sheffield, South Yorkshire). Greenhill is about 165 miles north of London. It is interesting to see that it is also only about 13 miles from Beeley.

JOHN GRAVES OF CONCORD, MA (GEN. 166)
It has been speculated that he was born 1619 in Gloucester, England, son of John Graves of Gloucester, who was born 17 Sept. 1581 in Gloucester, and had a total of 3 wives. Another possibility is that he was from the same place as Rev. Peter Bulkley, the pastor of his church in Concord, MA, who was born in Odell, Bedfordshire. It is also possible that John Graves was from Kent, England, since many of the early settlers of Concord were.

It is interesting to note that if this family did originate in the area of Sheffield, Derbyshire, and if at least some of them migrated to London, then the Odell location for John Graves makes the most sense, since it is on the path between the two cities.

WHAT IS NEEDED:

  • More research is needed for the families of Beeley, Stepney, Macclesfield, and other related families in England to try to connect them and trace more descendants. It would also be helpful to continue the will research begun by Eben Putnam.
  • Eben Putnam's research of wills for the family of gen. 28 needs to be extended to find more descendants and earlier ancestry.
  • In order to find descendants of the families in this group and their ancestry, we need to DNA-test Graves/Greaves descendants of all genealogies in England, since present-day geographic location may not be a good indicator of relationships and ancestry.