object of this effort is to try to trace the Crossett, Connors, Philley
and Harrison families, back to the generation who came to this country
and as far before that as is known without going overseas. In following
these families as they pass through the periods of their lives and our
histories, I will try to shine some light on those times. Most emphasis
will be on the direct lines but they are not continuous. Information is
lacking in many respects. For this reason stories are presented as
vignettes rather than as a continuous history. Of course, you can go as
deeply into the families as you want. There is plenty of stuff for
others to study, and, of course, my own study is on-going and subject
to update. That is the main reason why this is on-line.
studying this site you may want to know about the standards I have used
in composing it. I have gathered together information on these four
families from hundreds of places a description of which will be
seen attached to the information they present. There will be links
which will lead to other locations. This kind of page you are now reading
will be given to general family information, some more specific stories
or information. In the left margin is a link to the Family Data
(names, dates, places, and some notes). Within each of the family pages will
appear links to people and incidents related to them. Coats-of-arms will sometimes appear in the margin
and will link to the family name they represent and its history.
(These coats of arms are presented as a point of interest and
decoration and no claim is made that the persons mentioned in these
pages are officially entitled to display them.) Getting around should
be fairly easy with the links and the back button.
information in genealogy is a kind of effort among family historians
that sometimes rises to the level of a blood sport. There are those who
will take as fact any piece of printed material and will graft it on to
their own"family histories"without question. There are private
genealogies on line that count hundreds of thousands of subjects.
Others are intent upon proving their "noble" heritage whether or not it
is true. The majority are folks like me who enjoy the search and want
to experience how their people got to where they are today. As
everyone knows information can be used or abused depending on the
motives of the user, therefore caution is always wise.
Available information is of two main types: namely, sources and references.
Sources run the gamut from official government or church records to
family bibles and very carefully checked scholarly works done by
Historical Societies such as the databases developed by the New England
Historical and Genealogical Society and many others. The
best of these is subject to error and the errors are by no means
few. One of my first sources was an original government death
had information so incorrect that it blocked me for a year. "Official"
documents are only as accurate as the official who composed them.
to facts are a different thing altogether. Compiled family histories
available in libraries and on-line number in the hundreds of thousands.
Some are excellently done and some few are a complete fraud. trying to
decide which is which is what makes genealogy both fun and frustrating.
I have tried to
get more than one reference for each data if possible. I
rate information in a hierarchy which refers more to the chance of data
inaccurate than correct. Those most accurate come
from vital records, church registers, family Bibles, and
diaries and archives. Less reliable are census records which are
their errors, and those composed genealogies which frequently rely on
genealogies in a never ending loop of untested data. Data gathered for
reasons other than history need to be closely checked. Unless these
documents have reliable references of their own they are a minefield
of possible trouble. On the other hand there are those composed
have been done to the highest standards and I have used their data
freely after assuring myself of their worth. I have no time or desire to do excellent work over again. Newspaper obituaries
and stories are to be taken with a large dose of salt. Unsubstantiated
anecdotes and statements are questionable but sometimes
valuable as directional clues. Some of these are used but only with
restraint and selectivity and if I have been able to get a
second more reliable source for the same fact, I have. I have not
included a completely unreliable source. I only
mention it because it's not that simple, of course. Most
documents have many levels of reliability in them and it is
hard to tell which is which. The bottom line is that this work is as
accurate as I can make it.
Lets get on with it.