Home |  Sitemap |  FAQ |  Contact

Graves Family Association

We are a voluntary, non-profit organization that is interested in the surname of Graves, Greaves, Grave, Grieve, Greve, and all other variations of that name for all time periods, worldwide. The Association was started by Ken Graves who has also managed and grown this website and its contents over many years, including creating all the charts on this site, as well as the many genealogies you can access via the Research drop-down tab. Although Ken will probably continue doing minor additions and upgrades to this website, no one has yet volunteered to take over the broader responsibility. Volunteers are needed.

Explore the wealth of information on this website by investigating the links on the drop-down menus at the top of this page. The origin of the surname, the early history, and famous family members can be found on the History/News tab. Alphabetical and numerical listings of the many Graves/Greaves families, African ancesry, and a summary of some of the research programs are on the Research tab. The DNA tab gives access to information and charts for Y-DNA, autosomal DNA, etc. The Products tab provides access to books that have been published, previously-published Graves Family Newsletter issues, and the previously-published Graves Family Bulletin.

Significant recent updates to pages and files on this website

To see the list of recently updated pages and files, click here.

What's new?

The Graves Family Association Facebook page was started in Oct. 2011 and had 448 members as of October 4, 2012. By April 22, 2017, that number was 1757, and by June 2022 was about 2,900 members! Other members and the administrators will try to answer your questions, and we would love to have your help! You can click on the Facebook link just under the Coat of Arms at the top right corner of this page to go to the Facebook page and join if you want to. Let us know how you like it and what you might like to see changed. (Posted 17 June 2022)

The free online Graves Family Bulletin has been restarted and you can subscribe by contacting Ken Graves. Major objectives of the activities of the GFA and our DNA studies are being covered in the Bulletin. These objectives include finding the origin of each Graves/Greaves family, using DNA testing to find which of these family share a common acestor, and connecting all the various parts of all the families. Our tools are traditional research plus DNA testing. We are relying most on Y-DNA testing, but also hope to be able to make more use of autosomal and mitochondrial testing in the future. We also need more help from others for successful progress on these activities, and everyone's help in encouraging more descendants to test. (Posted 17 June 2022)

In recent years, many of the activities of the Graves Family Association (such as reunions, trips, the newsletter, updating of genealogies, and publishing of family books) have been reduced because of lack of time by Ken Graves and lack of enthusiastic volunteers. If you or anyone you know would like to help with any part of our activities, please volunteer. However, even though some activities have been curtailed, the Graves Family Association is still active, primarily through its Facebook page and via the Graves/Greaves DNA Project on Family Tree DNA. Also, we will continue making updates to the content of some of the pages and to the genealogies and charts on this site as time permits, but those updates will probably be more limited than in the past. (Posted 26 Nov. 2019 and revised 2 June 2020)

One of the goals of the GFA has been to find the identity and origin of Capt. Thomas Graves of genealogy 169, and to determine which of the groups that claim descent from him are his true descendants. A major contender for the true lineage is that descended from grandson Ralph Graves, b.c. 1625. Since that group shares a common Graves ancestor with genealogies 65 and 168, is part of Y-DNA group R1-168, and is believed to be from Hertfordshire, England, another goal is to find how these families are connected, and learn more about them in England. One step in this direction is the creation of a new chart which summarizes the Y-DNA results for all the genealogies of the R1-168 group. (Posted 28 Dec. 2020)

There was a Graves Family Gathering in Virginia on Oct. 25-28, 2017. This was especially for all those whose ancestors who lived in Virginia in the 1600s and 1700s, but all Graves descendants were welcome to attend. The touring and meeting schedule included Spotsylvania and Louisa counties, Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement, Hungar's Church and Curtis Plantation, and Colonial Williamsburg. The complete schedule and full information was here. (Posted 7/2017 and revised 10 April 2020)

Some of the old Graves Family Newsletters are now available for viewing on the Products/Newsletter page. We hope to eventually make all of them available. (Posted 4/2017)

To find out more about GFA activities, visit our Facebook page and/or join the Graves DNA project. In addition to those activities, genealogies and charts are continually being updated.

Autosomal DNA testing is becoming increasingly helpful. This is a technique to test the mixed DNA that we all inherit from both our mother and father, and from all our ancestors. It has the potential for a major impact on finding and proving ancestors and other relatives. Several new autosomal charts have been created and can be accessed from the Autosomal DNA page on this website. We need everyone's help to add to these charts and to provide more information for additional charts. Look for more on this website and in the Graves Family Bulletin in the future. We suggest that everyone (both males and females) take this new test (Family Finder at Family Tree DNA and Relative Finder at 23andMe). You can sign up by scrolling down this page to the DNA Study section and clicking on the link for "How to sign up."

(This paragraph was correct when posted, but as of April 2020, this search capability was no longer working. If you have difficulty finding something on the site, contact Ken Graves.) There are new search capabilities for the entire website and for the genealogies on it. You can search for anything on the website by clicking on the slide-out tab at the top left of every page and using the top search option. Since this is a Google search of the site, all the standard Google search features apply. To search the genealogies for a specific person, a spouse, a date of birth or death, or any combination of those, use the bottom option on the slide-out tab or access it from the drop-down Research tab at the top of every page. For this search of the genealogies, only the exact sequence of characters in each entry field will be found, so often entering less is better. For instance, you can now find every occurrence of a Graves who married a Jones or someone named Eleanor, and then just click on the link of interest to take you directly to that genealogy. We expect that this new genealogy search capability will allow you to find people and their families that couldn't previously be located. Let us know if you have questions or suggestions.

An impressive new research study has determined that John Graves of genealogy 270 may have been a son of William Graves and Ann, who were named as headrights in 1658 in New Kent Co., Virginia. This detailed treatise is now available on this website.

Hard-cover books of many of the major Graves and Greaves families are still available for sale. To see the list of 7 books already published, with prices and ordering instructions, click on the Products tab at the top of this page, or click on this link.

Check the Charts page for the many new and revised genealogies that are constantly appearing there. The lower portion of that page also contains groupings of related (or possibly related) families. We are trying to get at least one male descendant with the Graves/Greaves/Grieve(s) surname for every genealogy listed on that page to participate in our DNA study. If you see that your part of the family doesn't have at least one tested descendant, you or a person you find may be eligible for a free test.

DNA study

Traditional genealogical research will never find all the connections between the various Graves/Greaves family groups. The availability of Y-chromosome analysis now provides a new way to determine direct male-to-male lineage, and this continues to be the most important part of this project. However, the usefulness of mitochondrial DNA has been gradually improving, and now the availability of autosomal DNA testing (to trace all ancestral lines) has greatly increased the potential of DNA testing.


The Graves Family Association has gathered information and compiled genealogies on more than 900 major families and segments of families with the Graves, Greaves, Grave, Grieve (and other spelling variations) surname. It is believed that most or all of the segments of families are descended from one of the major families. We expect that the number of families will greatly decrease as we find how many of the families are connected to each other. To help you with your research they have been organized in the following ways:

To locate a specific person, place, or other item in the genealogies or anywhere else on the website, use the search option at the top left of every page of this website.

Research Puzzle of the Month

There is no new research puzzle this month. If you have one that you think should be included here, please let us know.

For more details on previous research puzzles, go to the Research Puzzle Page.