82 – Where’s Elizabeth?

What have we found?

We’ve traced Louise’s Jervis family back into the 1600s, searching for that elusive common ancestor.

We found the epicenter of Louise’s Jervis World. Five generations of Louise’s earliest ancestors we found were born and lived and died within a few miles of each other back to 1600. And it’s reasonable to assume that Louise’s family lived here even before the 1600s.

We’ve followed Admiral John Jervis’ families of gentry back to 1400s, hoping to link his tree with Louise’s. And we found these earliest gentry families were from around Chatcull, just a few miles from Louise’s family.

We discovered lots of other Jervis families that lived in the area. And we found that Jervis families were living in this area back to 1100s.

We’ve even discussed the migration paths from Scandinavia to Britain in the middle ages.

But we haven’t found Elizabeth.

What’s our takeaway?

DNA predicted that Mark and Louise have a common ancestor about 12 to 16 generations ago. Now we’ve traced Louise’s family back 10 generations. We must be getting close.

Families in the 1500s and 1600s weren’t mobile. They mostly lived their lives within a short distance of their birthplaces. It’s likely that Elizabeth and her husband lived nearby the Jervises we’ve found.

We’ve found no Jervis Quakers. The Quaker movement began around 1652, and Elizabeth was in Pennsylvania by 1683, so that’s only 31 years – a very short time span. Maybe it’s not important that we haven’t found Quakers.

What do we do next?

We know where to look. Let’s focus our search on this area.

We’ve identified the epicenter of Louise’s 1600s Jervises. Let’s say it’s centered on Mucklestone, just in the middle of Almington, Hales, Tyrley, Bloredale, etc.

Let’s draw a 10-mile radius around Mucklestone and assume that Elizabeth’s husband Jervis was from a family within this circle.

Of course, our circle also encompasses the gentry families (blue), and the Jervises from 1300s and 1400s references (brown).

Our circle also expands into Shropshire and Cheshire counties, areas that we haven’t researched as much as Staffordshire.

Amazing Fact: Remember when we began our search for Elizabeth, our problem statement included, “I assume she’s from England.” Now we’re saying, “She likely lived within 10 miles of Mucklestone.” What a difference.

Let’s search

Of course, we’ve searched these areas before, but not with such geographic focus.

We found that the best way to search the surname is to do two searches – J*rv* and G*rv*. Using the * wildcard would find matches such as Jarvis, Jervis, Jervise, Jervies, Jarves, Gervys, Gervis, etc. You can see some examples in the image below.

Here’s an example of a search tailored to a 10 mile radius around Mucklestone, surname J*rv* and G*rv*, for birth year 1650 +/- 40 years.

There are 941 results for J*rv* and 142 for G*rv*. So almost 1,100 Jervis citations in mid-1600s within 10 miles of Mucklestone. And that’s just one source.

That’s a lot. We need to try to fit the people in these citations into nuclear families, matching a parent or child or spouse. Sometimes it’s easy, sometimes impossible.

Sometimes I note people on a map while researching, so I can envision where a person is located. Here’s an example, notes on Jervis citations in south Cheshire.

There are lots of places to search for these citations – ancestry software, books, censuses, national archives, etc.

Nibbles Extra Credit

Let’s Document

CAUTION: This next section “gets into the weeds”. If you’ve got anything fun on your calendar today, go do it now. If you’re stuck at home and hard up, read on.

One of the most fun parts of genealogy is finding a fascinating citation. When you’re lucky, the citation will include dates, places, names, other family members, occupations, etc.

For example, here’s a citation of the marriage of Robert Gervis and Anna Wrighte in August 1602.

Marriage – Robert Gervis and Anna Wrighte – 1602

When we find a citation that we want to document, here’s the process we’re using.

If the citation includes someone we’re interested in, we save the image file.

Each person is added to our spreadsheet as a separate citation, so we can search and filter on them individually. So we’ll make one entry for Robert Gervis and another for Ann Wrighte Gervis.

Spreadsheet – citations

If we can associate the citation with a particular family in our Ancestry tree, we assign the person a unique ID number. Robert Gervis is ID 1196. That differentiates him from the numerous other Robert Gervises. Ann Wrighte’s ID is 1197.

We can filter the spreadsheet various ways. If we filter by ID 1196, we can see the citations for Robert Gervis. He was baptized in 1570 in Drayton, married in 1603 and had kids, and was buried in Drayton in 1633. Throughout his life, official events recorded his name as Jervis, Gervis, Garvis, and Jarvis.

Document the source too. We will want to find or reference these citations in the future.

Spreadsheet – Sources

The person in the citation is added to our Ancestry family tree, if not already there. In this citation, we add Robert Gervis and Ann Wrighte (Jervis) to the tree.

We assign Robert the ID of 1196 in the Ancestry tree. That will distinguish him from the 20 other Robert Jervises in the tree.

Likewise, Ann Wright gets ID 1197.

That’s it. Robert and Ann are now documented. If we need to find them later, we have lots of ways to do that.


2 thoughts on “82 – Where’s Elizabeth?

  1. Louise Longworth June 14, 2020 / 6:59 am

    Fantastic research Mark.
    I’m interested in the fact that when Elizabeth reaches America, her son’s forename is Joseph.
    In all the above research, I can’t find a Jervis whose forename is ‘Joseph.’ Given the pretty ingrained family naming patterns that were generally followed at that time, I find that intriguing. Who is the Joseph after whom Elizabeth’s son is named? If it’s after her husband, or her husband’s father – that could imply that her Joseph might not be the firstborn Jervis son. Sadly so much child mortality in those days, of course.
    I’m not sure what relevance this would have, given that the parish records in those times held such sparse information, but, looking for the marriage at the right time of an Elizabeth to a Jervis, not knowing her surname, the presence of a Joseph on her side could imply that we have the right Elizabeth.
    Of course, so far, there seems to be a dearth of Elizabeths marrying Jervises, but this odd fact might be worth keeping in mind.


    • Mark Jarvis June 14, 2020 / 10:37 am

      Thanks Louise, and you’re so right about Joseph being a rare name in Church of England parish records.

      But not so for Quakers. From the great book “Albion’s Seed”, by David Hackett Fisher, pp. 503-505:

      “Delaware Quakers also differed from other English-speaking people in the descent of names from one generation to the next. Unlike New England Puritans, Quakers named their first-born children after grandparents. Unlike Virginia Anglicans, they were careful to honor maternal and paternal lines in an even-handed way. An example was the family of Thomas and Rachel Wharton, who came to Pennsylvania from Westmorland and Wales. They named their first-born children after grandparents on both sides of the family, and later arrivals after themselves in the following order.”

      “The eldest son was named after the mother’s father, and the eldest daughter after the father’s mother.”

      “Favored forenames often came from the Bible, but the proportion of biblical names was not nearly as strong as among the Puritans. In England only about 50 percent of male Quakers received biblical names, compared with 90 percent in Calvinist families. The leading favorites were John, Joseph, and Samuel. English and Teutonic names continued to be popular among Friends.

      “Among English Quakers, the most popular names were as follows:”

      Derbyshire Quakers, 1680-1750
      John Mary
      Joseph Sarah
      William Anne
      Samuel Elizabeth
      Thomas Hannah
      George Hester/Esther
      Francis Phoebe
      Henry Martha
      Benjamin Margaret
      Elihu Ruth

      Cheshire Quakers, 1680-1750
      John Mary
      Thomas Elizabeth
      Samuel Sarah
      Jacob Martha
      Joseph Hannah
      Richard Anne
      Daniel Catherine
      Benjamin Ellen
      James Hester
      David Phoebe


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