Vol. 17, No. 9, Dec. 11, 2015


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




Copyright © 2015 by the Graves Family Association and Kenneth V. Graves.  All rights reserved.


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** General Comments

** Finding Your Correct Y-DNA Haplogroup Subclade

** Ancestry to Retire Family Tree Maker Software

** Some Clues About the Possible Ancestry of Capt. Thomas Graves of Virginia

** Updates to the GFA Website

** To Submit Material to this Bulletin & Other Things






The main article in this issue is about the research indicating the possible origin of Capt. Thomas Graves of genealogy 169.  It certainly doesn’t answer all questions about that family, but it is a good starting point for further research.


Another article encourages male Graves/Greaves descendants to take advantage of the sale at Family Tree DNA to upgrade their Y-DNA test to 111 markers, and to join the appropriate haplogroup project (as discussed in an article in the previous issue of this bulletin).  A third article discusses the announcement from Ancestry that they are discontinuing support for the Family Tree Maker software program.






The following message from Mike Walsh, R1b project administrator, was sent on Dec. 8 to all those who have done Y-DNA testing at Family Tree DNA.  The purposes of Y-DNA testing for male Graves/Greaves descendants are to find: (1) which family you are part of, (2) which branch of that family you are part of, and (3) how your Graves/Greaves family relates to others.  To do that, we need to test for STRs (the tests for 12 through 111 markers) and for SNPs.  Mike’s message provides a recommendation for STR testing and more explanation.


“People in any R1b subclade from R-M269 on down should consider going to 111 Y STRs or 67 at a minimum.


R1b-M269's expansion across Europe has now been documented by scientists as a fairly recent timeframe - the Bronze Age. This means that R1b people from Europe typically have STRs that follow along with the Super Western Atlantic Modal Haplotype and our tree looks more like a bush than a tree.


We need more STRs to discern our haplotypes in matching systems and analysis.


1. More STRs can help guide you on SNP/haplogroup testing, saving money on that kind of testing.


2. More STRs can provide additional and better matches on your myFTDNA matches screen.


3. More STRs improve precision for Time to Most Recent Common Ancestor estimates (TMRCA).


4. A 111 Y STRs haplotype is estimated to have a change about every three generations which is very helpful for family tree building when you reach brick walls in your genealogy.


Below are the upgrade sale prices and savings from the standard price. The pricing expires December 31, 2015.


Y12 to 67 STRs for $151 saving $58

Y12 to 111 STRs for $271 saving $88


Y25 to 67 STRs for $118 saving $50

Y25 to 111 STRs for $199 saving $70


Y37 to 67 STRs for $79 saving $40

Y37 to 111 STRs for $176 saving $64


Y67 to 111 STRs for $103 saving $46


The savings can be substantial, percentage-wise. 


If you haven't, please also join the R1b all subclades project at the web link below. If you join and get to at least 67 STRs we'll include you in the all R1b haplotype spreadsheet analysis.  For more information, click here.


We will also help you get placed in the right major subclade project!”






The following article was posted on the Ancestry blog on Dec. 8.  A similar email was sent to all Ancestry customers.  The consensus so far is that the management at Ancestry thinks they can generate more income by delivering all functionality through a subscription service, and they see Family Tree Maker as competition for their subscription.  Not a good move for customer trust and satisfaction!


In the opinion of one commentator on the ISOGG list (John Beardsley), this latest announcement is just the latest in a long list of customer betrayals by Ancestry.  His list includes the discontinuance of Y-DNA and mtDNA sales, the discontinuance of support for the data from the tests they had already sold, their reducing online services such as RootsWeb, and their discontinuance of their commitment to maintain SMGF DNA database.


Alternatives to Family Tree Maker include RootsMagic, Legacy Family Tree, and Brother’s Keeper.  RootsMagic seems to be slightly more highly regarded, but what is best for any individual depends on personal needs.  Click here to see a list of links to some optional genealogy programs.  You can usually try a free version of the programs or use a free trial of the full version of these programs before deciding which one you want to use.    None of these products synch with Ancestry’s online trees as Family Tree Maker does, but Ancestry has not offered any other options (yet). Of course, another option is just to keep using Family Tree Maker; it will continue working even though it won’t synch with Ancestry’s online trees after next year.


RootsMagic has already responded with a special update discount offer for Family Tree Maker users.  See their blog article here.


Kendall Hulet of Ancestry has responded to the many complaints about this action with a blog article here.


Ancestry to Retire Family Tree Maker Software

Posted by Kendall Hulet on December 8, 2015 in Family Tree Maker


Ancestry is proud to have made a significant investment this year to bring valuable new content and records to the Ancestry site. In 2015, we’ve made 220 million searchable historical records from Mexico available, more than 170 million pages from the largest collection of U.S. will and probate records, among others. We’ve also introduced new features such as Ancestry Academy and major advancements for AncestryDNA.


We remain dedicated to helping people gain new levels of understanding about their lives, and who and what led to them, harnessing the information found in family trees, historical records and genetics. As a company, we’re also continually evaluating ways to focus our efforts to provide the most impact and best product experience for our users through our core offerings.


True to this focus, we’ve taken a hard look at the declining desktop software market and the impact this has on being able to continue to provide product enhancements and support that our users need. With that, we’ve made the decision to stop selling Family Tree Maker as of December 31, 2015.


Our subscription business and website, on the other hand, continue to grow and we are doubling down our efforts to make that experience even better for our Ancestry community.


Ancestry will continue to support current owners of Family Tree Maker at least through January 1, 2017. During this time, all features of the software, including TreeSync™, will continue to work, and Member Services will be available to assist with user questions. We will also address major software bugs that may occur, as well as compatibility updates.


These changes are never easy, but by focusing our efforts, we can concentrate on continuing to build great products for our loyal Ancestry community.


If you have inquiries regarding Family Tree Maker, please reach out to our Member Services team.We’ll also provide updates on our blog as needed leading up to January 1, 2017.


You can see more, including the many incredulous comments, by clicking here.






Dr. Charles Graves of Geneva Switzerland, descended from genealogy 70 (Richard Greaves of Bradfield, Yorkshire and Chesterfield, Derbyshire), has found some interesting information about the possible origin of Capt. Thomas Graves of genealogy 169 in England.  Since people associated with each other in their country of origin often migrated to other places as a group or to places where associates have gone, he has investigated the associates of Capt. Thomas Graves in Virginia, and where those people may have come from in England.  He has submitted the following article (with minor editing by me).  Comments and further investigation are encouraged.


I encourage others to use this approach to find the likely place of origin of other ancestors.  This applies to origins within the same country as well as migration from Europe to other continents.


Regarding the Captain Thomas Graves of Jamestown DNA we consulted the Internet for the history of him and found the following names of persons who had been associated with him from about 1608, in the Hungar’s church, or as spouses of his children. 15 of these names were Hertfordshire families (10 living within about 10 miles of Much Hadham, Herts, in the period 1550-1600 and 5 within 20 miles of that village). 5 of the family names did not seem to be from Hertfordshire.


       Christopher Newport, a Newport family at Barkway, Herts

       George Yeardley, a Weston, Herts. Family

       Walter Shelley, no Herts. connection

       Henry Singleton, married Helen Bush at Little Hadham, Herts.

       Thomas Edge, no definite Herts. connection.

       Crowshaw family at Cheshunt, Herts.

       Obedience Robins, a Baldock, Herts.  family

       John Howe, a Hunsdon, Cheshunt or Gilstead, Herts. family

       William Stone, from Watford, Herts.

       William Burdett, from Walken near Baldock, Herts.

       William Andrews, from Flamstead near St. Albans, Herts.

       John Wilkins, a Baldock, Herts. family

       Edward Drews, a St. Albans, Herts. family

       Alex Mountray, William Benimann, Stephen Carlkton, no apparent Herts. connection.

       Nathaniel Eaton, St. Albans, Herts

       Frances Doughty, Sawbridgeworth, 3 miles from Much Hadham, Herts. (one of the husbands of Capt. Thomas Graves’ daughter Ann was a Frances Doughty -- probably from the Doughty family from this same Sawbridgeworth, Herts, a short distance southeast of Much Hadham).

       Thomas Sprigg and Jane MacGuffy, no apparent connection to Herts.


Moreover, one article in the Internet about Captain Thomas Graves notes that he was listed as Thomas Grave (p. 304, Virginia Company of London, Vol. IV). My research on baptismal records in Hertfordshire ( show only the following persons called Thomas Grave or Thomas Graves born in Herts. 1550-1600:


       Thomas Graves, bap. 1570 Cheshunt, father Thomas Graves

       Thomas Grave, bap. 1571 Much Hadham, father John Grave

       Thomas Grave, bap. 1575 Much Hadham, father John Grave

       Thomas Grave, bap 1584 Much Hadham, mother Johann (Joan) Grave (no father listed)

       Thomas Grave, bap. 1588 Thundridge, Herts, father Thomas Grave


Many Grave family members were listed in Cheshunt, Much Hadham and Thundridge in Herts in that period. Some early 17th century Grave family members were bap. in Baldock, Herts (see above references to Baldock).


Verlinda was one of Capt. Thomas Graves’ daughters. This name appears to be taken from the Vrlyn family of St. Giles Cripplegate parish in London, an important church related to overseas colonial expansion. As for Katherine Croshawe someone with this name (wife of Capt. Thomas Graves?) was baptised 1580 at St. Mary Woolnoth church in London (father Edward). It was also an important church with members related to overseas expansion.


Thus, to search for DNA connections with Grave /Graves families in Hertfordshire, probably we should start with the Grave families since that seems to be the main Herts. family with Grave/Graves name in the 17th century. I found a couple of persons residing in Herts. today with that name: Nils Grave and Stephen John Grave. I am trying to locate their addresses in order to write them. However if Capt. Thomas Graves is the Thomas Grave born of Joan Grave 1584 at Much Hadham then we have a problem. Apparently the same Joan Grave married Josias Paneley at Sawbridgeworeth near Much Hadham in 1588 and a Joan Grave married a Basil Milles 1597 at Stevenage, Herts.  but we do not know if this Josias or this Basil was the father of Thomas Grave bap. 1584 of mother Joan (see additional comments about Josias Paneley toward the end of this article).


From our work within www.familysearch,org, we determined that there were four males named Thomas Grave/Graves born in Hertfordshire 1550-1600 at the era when the adventurers who founded Jamestown were largely Hertfordshire adventurers (see above). We have simply eliminated Thomas Graves bap 1570 at Cheshunt since his family members’ names (Edward, Elizabeth) do not appear in Capt. Thomas Graves’ family. But there were at least three ‘Thomas Grave’ as candidates for the Captain, i.e. Thomas Grave bap. 1576 (of father John) and Thomas Grave bap. 1584 (of mother Joan) both at Much Hadham, and Thomas Grave bap 1588 of father Thomas. at Thundridge, Herts.


These Thomas Grave apparently had children in Herts. later, as follows:

       John Grave child of Thomas Grave bap. 1626 at Thundridge

       Mary Grave child of Thomas Grave bap. 1602 at Baldock,

       Margaret Grave daughter of Thomas Grave bap 1615 at Baldock

       Frances Grave child of Thomas Grave bap. 1616 at Baldock

       George Grave child of Thomas Grave bap., 1609 at Baldock

       Robert Grave child of Thomas Grave bap 22 July 1619  at Baldock

       Mary Grave bap 1625 at Widford (next to Much Hadham) of Thomas Grave and Margaret


At first glance it appears that there were several Thomas Grave families having children, 1600-1626 in Herts, that probably Thomas Grave of Thundridge (bap 1588) was involved and  that (one or both) Thomas Grave of Much Hadham (bap 1575, 1584) were involved. That some children were baptized by Thomas Grave at Baldock (near where at least 5 of the Jamestown adventurers came from) seems to indicate that that Thomas Grave may have been Capt. Thomas Graves of Jamestown.


But if those children baptized at Baldock were of Capt. Thomas Graves, what happened to them? They are not listed as children of Capt. Thomas on Graves family records in Jamestown colony.  However, Frances Graves is listed as Capt. Thomas Graves’ last daughter in those records, but no further information was available to the researchers about her.


The Frances Grave shown baptized at Baldock above was perhaps the one later listed in Herts. as marrying John Baker at Great Munden, Herts in 1672. Great Munden (represented by the hamlet of Nasty, which is in the civil parish of Great Munden, on the following map) is about 7 miles from Much Hadham, home of the two Thomas Grave (bap. 1575, 1584) whom we are concerned about.


As for a Robert Grave (bap. 1619 at Baldock of Thomas Grave) he was perhaps the Robert Grave father of a son Robert Grave baptized at the Abbey St. Albans, Herts. in 1640.


As for a George Grave, there was a George Grave son of George Grave bap. at Much Hadham 1631 and 1644 and a George Grave son of George Grave  bap. 1644 at Baldock, Herts.  Here we seem to have the same George Grave (bap. 1644) listed at both Much Hadham and Baldock, Herts. reinforcing our view that the children bap. at Baldock have a relation to the two Thomas Grave bap. at Much Hadham in 1575 and 1584.


This Robert Grave son of Thomas Grave was baptized at Baldock on July 22, 1619. Captain Thomas Graves was placed in charge of his ‘hundred’ in Virginia in May 1618, but he joined the Legislative assembly on July 30 1619 (Wikipedia article). After the bap. of Robert Grave at Baldock in 1619 no other children of Thomas Grave were known there. This at least proves that the Thomas Grave at Baldock could be Capt. Thomas Graves of Jamestown. It also indicates (if it was Capt. Thomas Graves) that the Captain decided to leave some of his children (Mary?, Frances, George and Robert) in Herts and to carry only his sons John and Thomas with him to America.


What about those two recorded sons John and Thomas? Their records of birth are difficult to find. I did find a record for a John Grave son of Thomas Grave bap. at Blackmoor End, Essex (25 miles east of Much Hadham, Herts.) in 1612. This coincides with generalized suppositions about his birthdate. Moreover, for Thomas there is a baptismal record of a Thomas Graves son of Thomas Graves baptized at abbey St Albans, Herts. in 1617.  This also coincides with generally held suppositions. After all, Capt. Thomas Graves was called ‘Graves’ by the time he was becoming a leader in Virginia.


There has been speculation as to the last name of Capt. Thomas Graves’ wife, supposedly a Croewshaw (Crosher). There is no information about this in Herts. records except for the fact that a wife of a Thomas Grave of Thundridge or Much Hadham was a Margaret. A wife was not specifically related to the Baldock births or baptisms, but only to the 1625 Widford, Herts. birth. By 1625 Captain Thomas Grave was permanently settled in Virginia. I have researched the various Baldock-related ‘adventurers’ families of Newport, Yeardley, Robins, Burdett and Willkins but found no ‘Katherine’ born of those families in Herts. Thus, Capt. Thomas Graves apparently did not marry a sister of these his colleagues


Thus, it appears that Captain Thomas Graves was called Thomas Grave in Hertfordshire, that he had a family there (some of whom did not go to Virginia) and that he was either the son of John Grave of Much Hadham, Herts. baptized in 1575 or the son of Joan Grave (mother) baptized in 1584 at Much Hadham. In any case a Herts. Grave DNA should be sought, particularly since Capt. Thomas Graves was named as Thomas Grave in the Virginia company records, and since many of his early colleagues at Jamestown were from Hertfordshire (as shown above) and because there were a few Thomas Grave baptized in Herts. at the appropriate time.


More information about Josias Paneley:

Note: Josias Paneley married a Joan Grave in 1588 at Strawbridgeworth, Herts She was perhaps Joan Grave, the mother of Thomas Grave baptized at Much Hadham (a few miles from Strawbridgeworth) in 1584. The children of this couple were Jone bap. 1592 at Strawbridge-worth 1592; Arthur bap. 1594 at ditto; Margaret bap. 1597 at  ditto; John bap. 1601  at ditto; and Mary bap. 1605 at ditto. Other records of a Paneley family are to be found in Herts. (16th-17th century only)


For what it is worth, Josias Paneley  (he married Joan Grave in 1588 at Sawbridgeworth, Herts) had the following children (no mother named but no doubt it was Joan Grave)

Jone bap 1592 Sawbridgeworth, Herts.

Artur bap 1594   ditto

Margaret 1597   ditto

John  1601   ditto

Mary  1605   ditto


That ‘Jone’ (female) was the first named child might indicate that Joan Grave was his wife. (Joan Grave was the mother of Thomas Grave bap. Much Hadham 1584 and a Joan Grave married Josias Paneley in 1588).


Some of the places mentioned in the article:


       Much Hadham, Herts., home of the Thomas Grave families, was seat of the country house of the Bishops of London. Katherine of Valois (widow of king Henry V) gave birth here to Edmond Tudor, 1st Earl of Richmond, whose son was king Henry VII

       Blackmore End (near Chipping Ongar, Essex) held an Augustinian monastery confiscated by king Henry VIII and made into one of his country residences. His bastard son, Henry Fitzroy, was born here.

       Sawbridgeworth in Herts. was close by a residence called Pishobury belonging to Anne Boleyn, wife of King Henry VIII. Ralph Joselyn, twice mayor of London, was buried in the church.

       Baldock, Herts. was a busy market town on the entry to the ‘Great North Road’ out of London. It had been founded by the Knights Templar (chivalric Order with strong connections to the Levant)

       Widford, Herts. was the early home of John Eliot (1604-1680) first Puritan missionary to the American Indians. He arrived in Boston in 1631.

       Abbey St. Albans, Herts. After the dissolution of the monasteries by King Henry VIII, the abbey was purchased by the town of St. Albans in 1553. It was made into a parish church. Its dilapidated roof was repaired by King James I in 1612. (Jamestown in America was named after this king). Note above:Thomas Graves, son of Thomas Graves (Capt. Thomas Graves?) was baptized here at the abbey church in 1617.


It is quite striking that all the places associated with the Thomas Grave /Thomas Graves of this article had strong connections to the bishops and mayors of London and to the royal family members.


A Google map of the area where these people lived is especially interesting because it coincides with where the ancestors of the genealogy 168/169/65 group of families lived (in Hertford, Harlow, Nazeing, and Hatfield).  Although I had thought there was a slight possibility that the descendants of the Thomas-John-Ralph-Ralph-etc. line of genealogy 169 was from a descendant of gen. 168 that moved to Virginia (rather than actually from Capt. Thomas Graves, in spite of the strong evidence to the contrary), the article above strongly supports the idea that Capt. Thomas Graves was from Hertfordshire and the Y-DNA of his descendants should match that of genealogy 168.  The map is below, with most of the towns in the preceding article underlined in red, and those associated with the origins of the genealogies in Y-DNA group 168 with red lines both above and below.







Updated charts:

       DNAchart169.pdf, All descendants of Capt. Thomas Graves (gen. 169)

       R-Y-SNP-chart.pdf, Graves/Greaves Y-DNA SNP Chart for Haplogroup R

       I-Y-SNP-chart.pdf, Graves/Greaves Y-DNA SNP Chart for Haplogroup I


Revised genealogies:

       Gen. 111, John D. Graves of MD, KY & MO

       Gen. 169, Capt. Thomas Graves of VA





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



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