James Craggy: Where are you?
Dear Professor Gates, I wanted to let you know how much I enjoy Finding Your Roots. I have been interested in who my family was since I was a teenager (I’m 57 now). I am fortunate to know a lot about my father’s family since an extensive geneology was done on the Cole family around 1938. You might be interested to know that Solomn Cole was the first innkeeper in Boston and a grantor of Harvard University. On my mother’s side I know quite abit about her mother’s family, the Barnetts. It is her father’s side, the Craggy’s side that I have been having some trouble with. I know that my great-grandfather’s name was Henry Hall Craggy. His father’s name was James Craggy. I know that James was born around 1782 in Northumberland, England. He married Elizabeth Hall around 1813. That is where the legend begins. The “folks” (mother and her siblings) used to tell the tale that James Craggy was born into a family of substance. His father, also prehaps James (or William) was very wealthy owning much land and coal mines near Newcastle, Northumberland, England. James, Jr. fell in love with Elizabeth who is reported to have been a tennent on the estate of Sr. which was called Band Cliffe or Clufe. Sr. didnot approve of the marriage of James and Elizabeth and threatened to disown his son. James, Jr., being a stubborn Craggy (and believe me that trate has carried down to the present day) decided to move to English Canada. They made their way to Sherbrooke where they had aleast eight children. Around 1850 they moved to the US. Two sons, William and Thomas, fought in the Union Army and became US citizens. My grandfather, Henry, was a farmer in Northumberland, Coos County, New Hampshire. (His wife, Adelaide Norcott, was a direct decendant of William Bradford.) There was another son, James, who married and went West to the gold fields. There were at least 5 sisters: Jane, Isabella, Louisa, Dorothy, and Clarissa. I know that James died in East Corinth VT in 1873 and Elizabeth died in February, 1875 in Manchester NH. I have been told that they were buried in Edison Cemetary, Lowell MA. But I have not been able to find any record of James before his arrival in Canada. I have been on Ancestery.com and FamilySearch.com. I did manage to find James on a Public Family Tree and have been in touch with the owner of that Tree. I was blown away when she told me the same family myth. Her ancester was Clarissa, my great grandfather’s sister. Its the SAME story.
My health is not good and I really would like to solve this mystery for my children and my cousins. Can you suggest anything more I can do? I looked into hiring a professional but the estimate I got from Ancestery.com was almost $5000. which I don’t have. Any help would be appreciated.