A Free, Occasional, Online Summary of Items of Interest to Descendants of all Families of Graves, Greaves, Grieves, Grave, and other spelling variations Worldwide


Vol. 11, No. 7, July 9, 2009




Copyright © 2009 by the Graves Family Association and Kenneth V. Graves.  All rights reserved.


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** General Comments

** Reunion in San Antonio, Texas, August 7-9, 2009

** Another Special Offer for DNA Testing from Family Tree DNA

** Updates to the GFA Website

** Is it John Woodcock Graves or William Woodcock Graves?

** Fulfilling the Promise of the Graves Family Association

** To Submit Material to this Bulletin & Other Things






Like the previous bulletin, this is being sent mainly because we have received another special offer for DNA testing from our testing company, Family Tree DNA.  This is the best and easiest way for you to confirm descent from a common ancestor and get some clues about your earlier ancestry.  There are still many families that have not been tested, so I hope people in many of those families will take advantage of this offer.






As previously announced, the reunion of the Southwestern Chapter of the GFA will be held at the Holiday Inn International Airport, located one mile from the San Antonio International Airport and just seven miles from downtown San Antonio.  Their website address has changed, and is now  All descendants of any Graves, Greaves, or other spelling family are urged to attend.  This is not just for one particular family.  Ken Graves and others will be speaking and will be available to answer questions.


A block of rooms has been set aside for Friday and Saturday nights at the Holiday Inn at $89 per night plus tax.  Continental breakfast, lunch and snack are included.  To reserve a room, call them at 888-615-0518 and tell them it is for the Graves Family Reunion.  You can obviously stay elsewhere if you prefer.  For all attendees, there will be a $30 per person registration fee.


For more information, contact Ron Graves at, with a copy to Dick Graves (, Eddie Graves (, and Ken Graves (






After the success of the special promotion in June, we are very fortunate to have another special offer for DNA testing from Family Tree DNA.  They wrote: ďWe have decided to offer for the month of July a variation of our recent promotion: 


Y-DNA37 – promotional price $119 (reg. price $149)

Y-DNA67 – promotional price $199 (reg. price $238)

mtDNAPlus – promotional price $119 (reg. price $149)


These are the best prices, marker for marker, of any company in the market.Ē


This offer is directed mainly toward new customers – people who have not yet been tested.  However, if you have already had a Y-DNA test but not a mtDNA test, you can order the mtDNA test at this special rate.


If your part of the Graves-Greaves-Grieves family has not yet been tested, it is very important for at least one male with the Graves/Greaves surname to take the Y-DNA test.  If you are a family member but not a male with the surname, please try to find another family member who qualifies and is willing to be tested.


The offer of free Y-DNA testing for those who live in the U.K. or Ireland continues.






A page has been added to the Products section of the website for books by family members.  If you know of others who should be added, or if you would like to add information to an entry, please let me know.


Genealogy 385 (George W. Graves and Margaret ------ of Davie Co., NC) has been added to the website, and a section has been added to the Charts page for Graves families of Davie and Rowan counties, NC.  It is suspected that this family and a few others may be descended from or related to Conrad Graves of Rowan Co., NC (genealogy 15), but no one from any of these families has participated in the DNA testing program yet.


In GFB11-6 for June 23 was an article about Mrs. Ann Greaves who is credited with creating the world-famous Bakewell pudding.  She has now been added to the website page for notable family members.






In the Graves Family Bulletin for June 19, 2009 (GFB11-5) is an article about William Woodcock Graves, author of a popular English hunting song.  However, when I added him to the website page for notable family members, his name became John Woodcock Graves.  So which is correct?  Was he John or William?


Although I have not found primary record sources to verify his name, the IGI does confirm that his name was John Woodcock Graves, and that his parents were Joseph Graves and Ann Matthews.  A Google search gives his name predominantly as John, with only a few references to him as William.  Can anyone provide better proof?  I think he was probably part of genealogy 377 but donít know the connection.  Can anyone figure it out?






I often receive questions and sometimes complaints about someone having sent me corrections or updates to genealogies but the genealogies not having been updated.  Or someone wonders whether I have received information because they did not receive a response.  Or someone wonders why I have not done some other task they have asked for.


These and other similar questions are of considerable concern to me.  I have always had the situation, since I started the Graves Family Association in 1976, that I have never had enough time to do all the tasks that need to be done.  A tremendous amount of progress has been made over the years in publishing newsletters, bulletins, and books; creating and updating genealogies; creating and maintaining the website; starting and running the DNA study; organizing and participating in family gatherings and trips; etc.  However, I will never be able to do more than a small fraction of what I and others would like to have done.


I can think of 3 possible solutions to this problem.  The most obvious one is to get other people to help.  A few wonderful people have helped to organize and run regional chapters of the Graves Family Association, and many people have submitted information for genealogies.  However, in spite of requests by me over the years and a Volunteers page on the website requesting help, no one has volunteered (and followed through) to help with tasks such as creating and maintaining the website, updating the genealogies, contacting and recruiting new members, publicizing and promoting the GFA, locating Graves/Greaves descendants in the U.K. and requesting their genealogical information and DNA samples, searching for and compiling research information in the U.S., U.K., and elsewhere (births, marriages, deaths, census records, etc.), and doing research in English records to try to find earlier ancestries and connections between families.  Perhaps part of the problem is that many people feel they donít have the necessary expertise to do any of these jobs.  However, some of you do, and anyone can learn.  Or perhaps it is felt that Iím already doing the job pretty well, so thereís no need to help.


A second possible solution is to find or create and use better technology to automate or simplify some of what needs to be done.  I am working on that, but I need help in identifying what to do and how to do it.  And then I need help in actually implementing whatever is selected.


A third approach is to lower expectations.  Many family associations do much less.  Many DNA studies donít do any genealogy research and arenít connected with a family association.  This doesnít seem like a very good approach, but if we promised less there might be less room for disappointment.


My preferred response is to try to continue to do everything that is being done now, to provide more of what you want, and to increase member participation.  I also want to ensure the continuation of the GFA into the future, beyond the time when I am no longer able to do the work.  The key to the success of this and any organization is the enthusiasm and participation of the members, and an organizational structure that helps make that happen.  We need your ideas and your help to make this happen.  Do you have skills that can help?  What should we do?  Please share your thoughts.





This bulletin is written and edited by Kenneth V. Graves,



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If you do not already belong to the GFA, you can join by sending $20 per year to Graves Family Association, 20 Binney Circle, Wrentham, MA 02093 (more details on GFA website).  Payment may also be sent electronically via PayPal by going to and sending payment to 



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