Friday, February 4, 2011

All about the Craig's, from Lanarkshire, Scotland to Lanark County, Ontario

Craig-Dowsett Reunion Sunday August 21, 2011

click here for details 

As with all the pictures, click on them to see them full size.

The Craig crest, Grandpa has it hanging in the kitchen

The Craig badge
Worn in battle to distinguish friend from foe

     The Craig family crest has three variations, one for England, Ireland and Scotland. The crest above it for the Scottish Craigs and we have a long history there. The family motto "Vive Deo et Vives" translates roughly into "Live with God that you may live for ever"

     The surname means rock, rocky , low hill. The anglicised word is "crag".  It is often thought to be a descriptive surname but is as likely to be derived from the people who built and lived in the fortresses which were built on the low, rocky hills. Below is a picture of the "ancient" Craig tartan. I guess there is a modern version as well?

     So much for my flip remark, there are about a dozen Craig tartans, for hunting, ancient..... One for every occassion .

ancient Craig tartan

Lanarkshire, Scotland

     I have been able to trace the line back to the middle of the 1700's in Lanark, Lanarkshire, Scotland. The map above shows Lanarkshire, and where it is within Scotland.

     The first family I have information on is John Craig and Jane(Jean). All I have is that they had a son, William, born in 1746.

     William married Jean Russell on January 15th, 1763. Jean , born in 1745, was from Cambusnetham, Scotland, a neighbouring parish.
They had seven children;
Lilias 1764-1764,
John 1767-?,
Silios/Lilias 1769-?,
Jean 1771-?,
William 1773-?
James 1775-?.

William and Jean's marriage
Cropped from OPR in Scotland
Old Parish Records
William and Jean's son John. He was born January 21, 1767.
John's baptismal record

     John married Janet Gibson on July 8th, 1792 in Lanark parish.  

John and Janet's marriage

     I have five children for John and Janet;
William born July 20th, 1793,
Marion born 1795,
Jean born 1798,
John 1801-1873
Adam 1802-1873.

William's baptismal record

William's youngest brother Adam with his wife Janet Gemmill

     William married Christian Swan January 18th, 1819. I can't find any record of their marriage but the baptismal record for their eldest child, Janet, in 1820 shows them as married and still in Scotland.

Janet's baptismal record

     William is our forefather who came to Canada. There are conflicting stories about his departure and arrival in Canada. I have stories that put him in the country in early 1820 to late 1821, on three different ships, with different groups and alone and unmarried.

     The most reliable story puts him in Canada in 1820 with his wife, daughter and his youngest brother Adam. They settled in Lanark county. His land grant was 50 acres in Darling township, lot 3 ,concession 3.
The trip over would have been anywhere from 40 to 46 days by boat, in less than ideal conditions. I can't imagine what that must have been like for a newly wed couple with a newborn in tow.

     Lanark county was quite literally forest when they arrived, no town, no buildings, no anything. They hacked a livelyhood out of the forest. William was a cooper by trade, a useful skill to have. He would have made barrels for storage and transport, pails and butter churns. All things a growing community needed to survive and prosper.

     The records get very sketchy from his arrival until about the 1880's. The census records are wildly inaccurate if they exist at all and parish records where kept by travelling priests so are spotty as well. People were too busy trying to survive to be bothered.

     William and Christian had six children;
Janet(Jessie) Buchanan 1820-1893,
John McDonald 1822-1889,
William John 1828-?,
George 1829-1897,
Adam 1833-1903
Andrew 1834-1905.

     Christian died in 1837 and William never re-married. She is often named as Christina but it is probably either a transcription or spelling error. William died March 12, 1870.

William Craig
July 20, 1793-March 12, 1870

Old concession map circa 1861 of Darling township
the Wm Craig listed is probably William's son
There are three land grant applications between 1824-36 for William Craig so it may be a later grant

Record of William's death in Darling township

     William's daughter Janet married Sinclair Tullis and one of her descendants has provided a lot of the information here. Janet's son, JS Tullis, wrote a book/memoir about early life in Drummond township. I have a couple of excerpts describing his grandparents, William and Christian.

" My other Grandfather William Craig son of John Craig and Janet Gibson was born July 20th and baptized July 28 1793 in the town and Parish of Lanark, Lanarkshire Scotland, a cooper by trade.

Married about 1818, Christina Swan, their first child (my mother) was born 1820, February 7.  They with his brother Adam Craig migrated to Upper Canada, Bathurst District Settlement, Lanark Depot.  Sailing from Greenock Scotland June 1820 on the ship Brock.  He settled in the hamlet of Lanark.  He worked at his trade, later went on to Kingston; stayed there about three years,working at his trade, then returned to Lanark.  Later he settled on land in Darling Township.  Thier family was Jessie (mother),John, William, George, Adam and Andrew.  He (grandfather) died 15 March 1869, Darling Twp.  His height 6 feet, weight 240 lbs, full beard, hair and beard snow white and was a strong muscular man."
" Grandmother Christina Swan Craig born in Scotland the daughter of William Swan and Janet (Jessie) Buchanan.  She could talk the Gaelic.  When cooking the evening meal she dropped dead about the year 1837.  With her husband and babe Jessie (mother) six weeks old, sailed June 1820 to Lanark Upper Canada settlement".

     One of William's son John Macdonald's descendants is in Spokane, Washington.

     One of the "cousins" has supplied me with story of William's son George and his family. Thanks Sharon.

George Craig
b) 16 Oct 1829 in Darling, Lanark, Ontario, Canada
m) Elizabeth Stewart (12 Jul 1831-12 Dec 1905) in 1850
d) 1 Aug 1897 in Clyde Forks, Lanark Twp., Lanark  

Their children:
John 1850 or 1853 -1922
Jane Jennie 1854-1930
Adam 1858-1923
William 1861-1920
Christina 1862
George 1866-1881
Charles Stewart 1871-1940

John Craig

b) 13 Apr 1853 or 1850 in Darling, Ontario
m) Jane "Jeannie" McDougall (07 Dec 1850-1948) on Nov 20, 1872
d) 1922 in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada
(He was a cook in a lumber logging camp, and was known as “Fightin” John', because anyone who complained about his cooking had to fight him; he fought a lot.) I love that story, thank God that isn't a family tradition LOL

Their children:
Catherine Matilda Craig 1878-
George William Craig 1880- 
Agnes Highers Craig 1882-1901
Margaret "Maggie" Craig 1884-
Adam Dougall Craig 1886-1962
John Craig 1889-

Adam Dougall Craig (birth cert says McDougall but dropped Mc in most other official records)
b) 13 Sep 1886 in Cobalt, Ontario, Canada
m) Anna "Annie" Auguste Leopoldine Schmidt (3 Aug 1892-8 Mar 1965) on Dec 13, 1911 in Nipissing, On
d) 1962
(Adam worked as a machinist and in the mines) 

their children:
Thelma 1913-1971
Clarence "Curly" 1914-1968
Elmer John 1915- died but I don't have year
Doris 1917-

Adam McDougall Craig (in his 50's-60's)

Adam, Annie, Annie's sister and their children.
Annie and Adam's children, Thelma, Clarence, Elmer and Doris
(Hopefully, I got that all correct)

A later picture of the Annie and Adam's family

Clarence “Curly” Craig
b) 1914 in Cobalt, Ontario, Canada
m) Eileen Booth (1915-2006 Kingston, On) in 1939
d) 12 May 1968 in Cleveland, Cuyahoga, Ohio
(He worked in the mines then left for Queens in Kingston, put himself thru school, worked for Alcan in Shawinigan Quebec, South Africa, and California and Ohio. Died at 54 of colon cancer)

Eileen and Clarence"Curly" Craig
Clarence and Eileen's children carry on George's legacy

     One of Willam and Christian's son's, William John, descendants has filled in his branch of the tree. Thanks Stephanie. I have posted this as I got it. I like having the histories in people's own words, you've all read enough of mine. LOL

William John Craig born circa 1826 in Darling Twp., Lanark Co., to William Craig and Christina Swan married Mary Molyneaux on September 19 1851in Darling Twp., Lanark Co., Ontario. Mary was born circa 1831 in Drummond Twp., Lanark Co., Ontario to John Molyneaux and Mary Mitchell.  William John died sometime between 1881/1891, he appears in the 1881 census and Mary is a widow by 1891.  Mary Molyneaux Craig died March 29 1900 at Lot 7 Con. 13, Galway Twp., Peterborough Co. which is the same lot that she and William settled on when arriving in this area.  Mary's cause of death was Chronic dementia.
William and Mary had ten children that I am aware of.  All dates are subject to change because as I think you have noticed they can vary from one census to another, from one record to another.
1)  Mary Jane Craig born March 3, 1853 Lanark Co., Ontario married George Henry Emanuel  Dartnell on February 4 1883 in Bobcaygeon, Ontario.  Mary died April 18 1930 in Peterborough Ontario.  Her husband George was born October 14 1856 in London England and died in 1943 in Peterborough, Ontario. Both are buried in Little Lake Cemetery in Peterborough, Ontario.    Mary and George were the parents of Ella May Dartnell (Mrs. Dr. David Wesley Clark), and George Wesley Dartnell who married Huldah Dobbin.  Ella May Dartnell Clark had three sons, James, Grant and Allan, and George and no issue.  Mary Jane and George Henry Dartnell also had two children who lived less than a year, Clara Gwendoline and William Henry Emanuel Dartnell, both children are buried in Verulam Cemetery, Bobcaygeon, Ontario.
2) John Joseph  "Jack" Craig born February 26 1854 in Lanark Co., Ontario, married Mary Allan on July 25 1892 in Detroit, Wayne Co., Michigan, USA. John died January 12 1912 in Minnesota, USA.  He and his wife Mary had six children, Bernard Chester Craig, Florence Beatrice Craig, Robert Leonard Craig, John Francis Clement Craig, Walter Allen Craig, and Mary Cecelia Craig.
3)Christina Swan Craig born January 20 1856 in Lanark Co., married William "John Schell" on January 3 1874 in Fenelon Falls, Ontario.  Christina died January 12 1919 in Somerville Twp., Victoria Co., Ontario.  William "John" Schell was born September 15 1852 on Scugog Island, Ontario, he died February 6 1926.  Both are buried in St. John's Cemetery, Bury's Green, Somerville Twp., Victoria Co., Ontario.  In 1923 my great grandfather at the age of 71 was charged with murder, he was defended by Cecil G. Frost and his brother Leslie Frost, who would later become Premier of Ontario, it was said to be the case that launched their careers. In February of 1924 William "John" Schell was acquitted.   Christina Craig and William "John" Schell had 12 children. Melissa (Mrs. John Lang), who had one son, Almira Schell who died at age 18, Grecia Mildren Schell, who died unmarried,  Eliza Ann "Annie" Schell  who died at age 4, Matilda "Tillie" Schell (Mrs. Charles "Wesley" Billett) who had nine children, Delilah Schell, who died at age 10, William John "Jack" Schell who married  and had one child who died as a baby, Louie Maude Schell (Mrs. Henry "Harry" Hopkins) who had one son, Samuel "George Schell who married twice and had 17 children, one of whom is my father, Christina Schell who died as a baby, Charles Warren Schell who married and had 10 children, and Ella May Schell (Mrs. Gordon Thomas Hunter) who had 7 children.
A note about my grandfather Samuel "George" Schell son of Christina Swan Craig and William "John" Schell.  His first wife was his first cousin, Lillian Violet Craig daughter of Christina Swan Craig Schell's brother Adam, they had two children and Lillian died, then my grandfather married my grandmother Dora Christine Cavanagh, who also was a first cousin of Lillian Violet Craig, Lillian's mother and Dora's mother were sisters.
4) Elizabeth "Lizzie" Craig, born circa 1857, I know nothing about her, except I made a note one day while talking to my grandmother, and I believe Gramma said she married a George Parks and had moved to Quebec.
5)Jennet "Jessie" Craig, born August 1865 in Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., married Charles Penrose circa 1887 in New York I believe.  She died before 1920, they were the parents of four children, all born in New York, USA.
6) William Craig was born circa 1863 in Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., Ontario, he died Mary 2 1881 in Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., of intermittent fever, it took forever to find this death registration as it had been transcribed as William Creage.
7) Adam George Craig was born March 11 1866 in Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., he died April 22 1954 and is buried in Kinmount, Ontario.  He married Ann Jane Hughes on April 25 1893 in Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., Ont.  Ann was born November 4 1872 and died died March 28 1944 at her home in Galway Twp.  Adam and Ann had nine children, George Craig who died at the age of 3, Lillian Violet Craig (Mrs. Samuel "George" Schell) who had two daughters and is mentioned in the Christina Swan Craig family, William John Craig who married Janie Doughty and had five children, Charles Lesley Craig who married Irma Levely and had four children, Gordon Craig who was married twice, first to Emma Devitt who died, they had one son Lloyd who would be raised by William John Craig and Janie Doughty, he then married Eva Scriver and had two more children, Austin Craig who married Kathleen "Clatterin Kate" Young, they had no children, Mary Ann Craig, who married twice, first to Walter Grey and had to children, then to Harold Johnson and had two more children, Louella Craig married John H. Lambert, two children who died as infants, Anna Christina Craig, who married James Foster Schader and had one daughter. (Note Lillian Violet Craig Schell and her brother William John Craig were twins, always referred to as Will and Lill)
8)Rosella "Rose" Craig was born November 3 1870 Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., Ontario, died October 13 1921 in New Westminster, B.C. she married Thomas Sandford Craig (no relation), they had one daughter Winnifred Maude Craig, (Mrs. William Epslin Robertson.
9)Bernard "Burty" (Bert)Craig, born February 17 1874 Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., died September 19 1944 in Wainwright Alberta, he married Lucy Dalton on July 8 1903 in
Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., Ont.  They were the parents of Marie Craig, (Mrs. K. Kenny), Joseph James Craig who married Gladys Marshall, Lucille Craig who died young, Bernard John Craig who married ?? Simpson, Francis A. Craig who died as a baby, Harold Sylvester Craig, Angeline Loretta Craig, (Mrs. H. Straus), and Albert William Craig who married Margaret Wilkinson.
10) Matilda Craig born circa 1864 in Galway Twp., Peterborough Co., unconfirmed information has Matilda "Tillie" dying in Chicago Illinois in 1890.
When looking for these Craigs, we came across transciptions using the spelling Creag and Creig and several other variations.
Bernard "Bert" Craig and his wife Lucy Dalton
Albert Collins(Bert's cousin) and "Bert Craig" circa 1895

     William's youngest son Andrew married Sarah Radwell(Rathwell). The only information I have on her is that she was born about 1837 in Ireland.

     They had nine children;
William 1854-1910,
Christina S. 1858-1883,
Andrew 1860-?,
John 1861-?,
Sarah 1862-?,
Janet Magaret 1866-?,
Sinclair James 1867-1947,
Jessie B. 1870-?
Samuel Adam 1871-?

     By the 1881 census Andrew is listed as a widower and his children are with different relatives. I have no real information as of yet on what happened to the family. Eventually he went west and he died in 1905 in Winderemere, British Columbia.

1881 census
Sinclair and Jessie, Andrew's children are living with his sister Janet and her husband

Andrew's son William with his daughter Christina

Sinclair James Craig
I have several pictures of him

Sinclair again

Sinclair and his wife Angelina(Annie)

Sinclair and Annie again

Sinclair in Windermere, 1899
Sinclair went west and was in Windermere three years before Andrew
Sinclair and Andrew in Windermere, 1902

Andrew's youngest, S. Adam Craig and his wife Caroline McMillan
This picture makes me smile, that could be a picture of my grandfather with his dog in hand,
and that great big Craig moustache

     Andrew's son John married Catherine Phillips February 13th 1884. They had ten children;

Samuel 1883-?,
Hester 1886-?,
Florence1891- ?,
Lila 1892-1967,
John 1897-?,
Stella 1899-?,
Charles 1900-?,
Harold 1903-?,
Jessie 1905-?,
Lillian 1908-?.

John Craig and Catherine Phillips

John and Catherine's family, the Craigs around 1914-19
back row - Charles, Florence, Gertrude, Lila, Gordon
mid row  -  John (father), Hester, Catherine (mother)
 front row  -  Jessie, Lillian
missing - Samuel (oldest) and John
     John and Catherine's son John married Eva Belle Dowsett July 29, 1919. They had eleven children;

Thelma Kathleen 1920-2005,
Evon Milford 1921-,
Ruth Isabel 1922-2004,
Arthur John 1925 2001,
Clifford Gordon 1926-2009,
Marian Eileen 1931-,
Eva Gwendolyn 1932-,
Allen Havington 1935-2003 
Gary Milton 1937-,
Terrance James 1939-
Bonnie Elizabeth 1941-.

I don't have a picture of all of John and Eva's children.
 John Craig and Eva Belle Dowsett
     John and Eva's son Evon married Muriel Lumsden Craig. They had eleven children;
Evon and Muriel getting married with her brother Harold and his sister Ruth standing up for them
The entire family
Back row: Doug, Marilyn, Jimmy, Donna, Leo, Janice, Roy, Debbie and Eric
Front: Jean, Evon, Muriel and Karen

     Evon and Muriel's son Eric married Joan Fisher and had me, hurray.
Paul, Joan and Eric

     This is the history of the family I have so far, I will update it as I find more pictures and information. If you have something you would like included feel free to pass it along. If there is a mistake, please let me know and I will correct it. I have concentrated on the family as it applies directly to me but if you have information on any other members, pass it along. It would be interesting to see what happened to other lines of the Craig family and where they ended up settling.

     If you are looking for information on my "current " Craig family look under the post Grandma and Grandpa Craig. I have been posting pictures of the newest family members, etc there and will continue to update our family information on that page.

     Please feel free to contact me to share stories of the family, photos, what happened to....whatever.  Click on my profile, About Me, on the side and it will take you to my email address. You can also leave a comment with your email address, I'll repost it with out the address to protect people's privacy. I look forward to hearing from you all.

    The response to the Craig history has been fantastic with people saying hello, sharing their own family stories and photos and filling out the branches of our family tree. If it keeps growing, and I hope it does, I will have to relocate it to its own blog to handle the pictures and text. Keep those photos and family stories coming.Thanks for dropping by.


  1. You are more than welcome. I was hoping "cousins" would see this and make contact. Look forward to hearing from you.

  2. I reposted this comment after cutting out the email address

    Wow! Just stumbled across your blog, and am happy to finally come across my Craigs...very elusive on! Thanks for posting your info and research on your blog- so nice- maybe one day I'll do the same and cancel my membership.
    I can add some more to the Craig line if you like---some pics---
    My Craig's from Lanark line is william}george}john}adam}clarence.

  3. Reposted after removing the email address

    Hi Paul,
    So happy to see your blog! Filled in some mysteries for me. My line is William 1742/John 1767/William 1793/Andrew 1837/William 1854/Andrew 1893/(My grandfather whose original house I still live in) Nice to meet you, Sherry

  4. hey im am shane craig. can you give me a call? 678-658-6186

  5. Hi there,

    I'm looking for information on my great-great-grandmother Matilda Schell, who was married to Charles Wesley Billett. I see here that you have her listed as a daughter of Christina Swan Craig and William John Schell. Can you verify this for me? As I would love to add Matilda's ancestors to my tree.

    Thanks very much,

    Dallas Peeling

  6. Hi there,
    I am looking for a Man born in 1939/1940 in Ireland, his Mothers name was Christina Craig also known as Chrissie.I believe he was adopted by an English Family when he was between 2yrs and 7yrs. This gentleman did come to Ireland in April 1992 in search of his relations and found Chrisina's grave but he did not get any further with his search.
    I only heard this story this week, my name is Maureen and Christina and my mother were sisters. If anyone could throw some light on this, I would be so grateful and would love to make contact with my cousin.

  7. First: Is there possibly a way to have you send a higher jpg of the Family crest picture you state is hanging in your grandfathers kitchen?

    Second: So sorry to hear about your other half. Prayers to you and your family, may you find strength in your faith.

    I am willing to send you a fee.


Thanks for your comment, I hope you enjoyed your time in the "Kitchen".