Hello Trevor and everyone (waves)
I have been intending to join for quite some time but it was one of those things that kept getting lost in the general million jobs per day that is real life. I descend from the Bolsover Cree line which I discovered whilst researching my Cuttell, Hallam, Drabble ancestry. James Cree the son of James Cree and Elinor Edson married Elizabeth Whitehead 24th Nov 1709 in Bolsover, Derbyshire, England and their daughter Mary Cree, (1716-1777) married John Drabble in Sutton-cum-Duckmanton, Derbyshire, 19th May 1741.
I have been a family historian and writer since my mid-teens. I don’t if it of useful info for anyone but I don’t think that Alexander would have called himself Mac Cree. One thing I have found is that officials and the more petty the more petty if you follow, would never admit to “not quite catching what was said” and would therefore guess rather than admit they didn’t know. This was especially an issue if the person speaking to the person writing it down had a strong regional accent or even a dialect. I have come across a couple of clerics who changed the name of my Irish relatives from Dougal Connaught to Douglas O’Connor because they only managed to catch “Dou…” and “Con…”
As a patriotic Scotsman if Alexander’s own surname had been MacCree he would have made sure his only known surviving son was James McCree, but the rapid loss of the name back to Cree suggests to me that Alexander was given the label MacCree arbitrarily to signify he was a Scot as all Scots are “Mac” and he probably either never knew or simply ignored it. Given the traditional naming pattern of Scots families, it is 99% certain that his firstborn son (James, b.April1644) was named after his own father, so Alexander Cree was the son of a James Crie or Cree.
At this time I am focussing on Mary Cree’s mother, Elinor Edson. I am researching and writing the biography of John Thomas “JT” Edson, the western/adventure writer. By the 1980s he had sold 17 million copies of his books in 11 countries, and by 2000 this was 57 million copies. JT seems to descend from Elinor Edson’s father Thomas via her brother John Edson or Eadson and the biography needs to be ready for publication in 2018, to tie in with 90 years since JT was born. Unfortunately I already have one setback – in an attempt to achieve 2 goals in one, I decided to use the work on the biography as I am already doing it with towards a qualification in Genealogy via the University of Strathclyde – this coming first year will require £4000. I was refused grants in Scotland because I live in England and refused grants in England because the university is in Scotland. Yes indeed, this is the reality behind the political nonsense of creating “educational equality across class divisions.” Of course the knock on effect is that now I am having to seek donations/sponsorship my research budget has had to be diverted to pay towards course costs. This is all taking up time I could be spending on research and information, and of course anything I find that is relevant towards the Cree line that Elinor married into will be submitted here for adding on to the general knowledge base.
However, I am Scottish on my father’s side (Stewart, Paterson, Robb, McBirnie, etc) and if there is any Scots specific questions anyone wants to ask, feel free. I also have my brother’s Stewart DNA lodged with FtDNA in the USA for their Stewart surname project, and if there is not already one underway, I would strongly urge all male CREE to use FtDNA to set up a similar Surname research project – it will decisively answer whether all Cree, Crie, Cre, etc are the descendants of one or a small number of already related men who lived near Crieff, Perth, as seems to be the case. It is also a long-term project and an “always active one” – you only have to donate a cheek rub sample once, anyone can do it (I have had relatives in their mid-90s do so) and comparisons to fresh donations are always running 24/7. My other claim to fame (if any) is that my grandfather's first cousin was Eliza "Cis" Paterson, alias Pat Paterson, the Hollywood actress who married Charles Boyer (two time Oscar winner). If you ever watch the 1930 Warner Oland Charlie Chan in Egypt, Pat is Carole, the blonde haired heroine imperiled by the nefarious baddie disguising himself as an Egyptian mummy back to wreak havoc courtesy of the Pharaoh's curse. She got billing above Rita Hayworth!
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