Select Crowe Miscellany


Here are some Crowe (and Crow)
accounts over the years:


The Life and Times of Sackville Crowe


Sackville was the son of William and Anne Crowe of the Brasted Crowes
of Kent.  He married Mary Manners, one of the daughters of the
Earl of Rutland,
acquired lands near Llanherne in Carmarthen in Wales, and was made a
baronet in 1627.
The other parts of his life were less successful.   His
schemes to sell leases on the Crown’s ironworks in the Forest of Dean
ended up in litigation.  Later he served as the English ambassador
to the Ottoman Empire. Here he was accused of meddling in the affairs
of the Levant Company and was brought back as a prisoner to
London.  He spent a lengthy time in the Tower of London before he
was bailed out and the charges eventually dropped.  He died in
Fleet Prison in 1683.
Sackville’s forebears went back via Brasted in Kent to Crowe’s Hall in
Suffolk.  This family later settled in Ireland and married into
the Evans and Eyre families there (Eyrecourt in Galway no longer exists
but the stairway of the house is now in the Detroit Museum of

Reader Feedback – Kent and
Northumberland Crowes

wonder if you have any information on the links
between Crowe of Kent and Crowe of Northumberland.
coat of arms of Sir Sackville Crowe is also that used on the memorial
for Patrick Crowe of Ashington in St Nicholas’s Cathedral, Newcastle
Tyne.  A family researcher, sadly passed
away, stated that there was correspondence between Christopher Crowe of
and the Kent/Norfolk families.  It was
also inferred that the Northumberland Crowes helped fund the Welsh
estate of
Sir Sackville.  There has to be a
palpable link.

David Evans (


Robert Crowe of Swaffham in Norfolk

His great granddaughter Elizabeth Jones recalled the
following about him in her diary:

“My great gandfather Robert Crowe, whose portrait hangs
in the dining room together with that of his wife Alice Alpe of
Hardingham Hall in Norfolk, was a solicitor at Swaffham and, although
he died in 1786, his second son Philip continued to reside there for
many years.”

Inside the church in Swaffham there are a number of
gravestones of the Crowe family, some with the spelling Crow and some
Crowe.  They are all together in a group and so are presumably the
same family.  


Crows and Crowes in Ireland

Griffith’s Valuation was a survey of land and property owners in
Ireland undertaken for county Clare in 1855. The surname Crow was
recorded 16 times and the surname Crowe a total of 148 times.
Crowe appeared most often in the parishes of Drumcliff, Killaloe,
Kilmurry, Killofin, and Ruan.



Crow and Crowe

There were more Crows than Crowes in the 19th
century.  But the situation seems to have turned round during the
20th century.  The table below shows the current incidence of Crow
and Crowe surnames in the English-speaking world.


Numbers (000’s) Crow Crowe Total
UK    4    10    14
Ireland     3     3
USA    7    10    17
Canada    1     4     5
Australia    1     5     6
New Zealand     1     1
Total   13    33    46

In America, you would have probably found Crowes fighting
on the Union side in the Civil War and Crows on the Confederate side.


Early Crows in America


Name Birth Particulars
John Crow 1683 (in Maryland) died in 1743
Walter Crow 1717 (in Cecil co, Maryland) lived most of his life in
Virginia (Rockingham co)
George Philip Crow 1719 (in Germany) died in 1780 in West Virginia
William Crow 1726 (in Botecourt co, Virginia) died in 1795
Thomas Crow 1749 (in Berkeley co, Virginia) son of John Crow
Thomas Crow 1760 (in South Carolina) died in 1826 in Alabama
Rev. Abraham Crow 1763 (in Prince George co,
died in Georgia



Jim Crow in the South

The origin of the phrase “Jim Crow” has often been
attributed to Jump Jim Crow,
a song-and-dance charicature of African Americans performed by white
actor Thomas D. Rice in blackface.  It first surfaced in 1832 and
was used at the time to attack Andrew
Jackson’s populist policies.  The number was supposedly inspired
by the song and dance of a crippled African in Cincinnati called Jim
Crow.  Jump Jim Crow was in fact an initial step in a
tradition of popular music which would mock African Americans.

In 1877 a national compromise to gain southern
support in the Presidential election resulted in the last of the
Federal troops being withdrawn from the South.  White Democrats
had taken back power in every Southern state by that time.
The white Democratic Party government that followed the troop
withdrawals legislated “Jim Crow” laws which in effect segregated black
people from the
state’s white population.

The phrase “Jim Crow Law” first
appeared in 1904 according to the Dictionary
of American English
, although
there was some evidence of earlier usage. 


The Crow Emigrant Train of

In the autumn of 1937 Francis Marion Watkins sat down at the kitchen
table and related his memories of his journey across America over
seventy years ago in 1865.   Local historian Ralph L.
Milliken took down the story and his book, Story of the Crow Emigrant Train of 1865,
was subsequently published in the Livingstone
in California.  Later it was reprinted as a


Reader Feedback – Crowes in
Nova Scotia

I am a Crowe in Canada that can
trace my
ancestors back to the Hopewell.  The
Crowe that went to Canada on the Hopewell was in fact
an Ulster Scot.  His Crowe family was
originally a Lowland Scot
one that had settled in Ireland during the plantation period.  Their offspring James Crowe went to Canada to
settle in Nova Scotia on land that the English had taken from New
France and
the Acadians.

Chris Crowe (


Where The Crowe Flies

Russell Crowe is a legendary hellraiser with a reputation for
womanizing, hard drinking and aggressive outbursts that almost eclipses
his talent as an Oscar-winning actor.

But he does not appear to be a patch on his Welsh grandfather, a man so
fearsome that he makes the combustible Gladiator star look positively
easy-going.  Relatives described Jack Crowe as a volatile
wheeler-dealer, the black sheep of his family who was never able to
settle in one place.  Jack’s niece Paddianne Neely said:


“He had the most furious temper you could ever
believe.   I loved him.  But I once threatened
when he came to visit that if he ever hurt me or the kids, I would kick
him out.”

Researchers for the BBC Wales show Coming
traced Russell’s roots from his great grandparents Fred and
Kezia Crowe who ran a greengrocer’s shop in Wrexham.  Deeply
religious, they had fourteen children, including Jack born in
1907.  However, when the family emigrated to Canada in 1925, Jack
stayed behind to look after the family business.

Jack subsequently fell out with his elder brother Frank and, in a huff,
took off for New Zealand.  There he married Lois and they had four
sons (including Russell’s father Alex).  Their youngest son
Charles was killed in a diving accident when he was seventeen, a
tragedy which deeply affected Jack and left him with a simmering


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