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Traditions of the Ross Family

Written, probably in the early 1900s. Frank took copius amounts of notes from recollections from his father, George Ross, who died in 1910.

Transcribed by George Hays Ross III, 2/15/2009

"The following is a brief sketch of the family history of the John Ross who founded our family in America: Traditions handed from one generation to another.

My great great great grandfather was born in Scotland about the middle of the 18th century, perhaps near the year 1725. He was a trades-man and a land owner. His name was John Ross. My great great grandfather was also named John Ross he was carefully educated according to the strict old Scotch custom and was graduated from the university of Edinburgh which, as you may know has been a famous institution of learning for hundreds of years, so famed that members of royal families from all parts of Europe have been proud of the claim that their education was received at this university. After graduation John Ross entered government service and was appointed Ambassador to Ireland being stationed at Belfast. My great grandfather, also bearing the name of John Ross was born in Scotland and later resided with the family at Belfast, Ireland. He was fairly well educated but was determined not to attend college, this fact he greatly regretted in later life. On account of my great grandfather's decision no to attend college, his father apprenticed him to a weaver to learn the trade. In this profession he became quite expert, in later years in America his services and expert advice were very much in demand among the colonial people of Pennsylvania. These pioneers were obliged from necessity to weave the cloth from every bit of clothing they wore. As a young man my great grandfather, John Ross, decided to cast his fortune in the new world, so, shortly before the war of the Revolution he embarked on an emigrant ship bound for the English colonies of America. According to tradition, this was an unusually long and tiresome voyage. It was an experience talked of for years in the family circles as an example of trials, hardships and loneliness endured by the early pioneers. This ancestor is responsible for planting this branch of the Ross family in America. I have no doubt that he had many relatives living in America when he arrived for at that time there had been a heavy emigration from the British Isles for many years he must have arrived about the year 1771 or 1772. From my father's statement he was related to the George Ross signer to the Declaration of Independence, to the Col. George Ross who served under General Washington as well as others. I have been told that he resided for a time in New Jersey but the first authentic record is that of the war department which shows that he enlisted in the patriot army giving his residence as York county Pennsylvania. In Pennsylvania my great grandfather married Charlotta Nacher, a native of Holland and I believe at least one of the children was born before the war. The names of the children resulting from this marriage will be listed in another installment and in the proper order although I do not have access to the records of dates of birth etc.

After the Revolutionary war my great grandfather moved to the new territory then known as Ohio, about the year 1801. Here he bought government land near the town of Cadiz, Harrison county, Ohio, on the south fork of Stillwater creek. On this old homestead a numerous family of Rosses were reared, all of whom wil be listed to the best of my ability later on. In this same neighborhood also, resided the Tipton family and it was here that the romance began between my own grandfather and the young and beautiful Mary Tipton. She was my father's mother. My father always spoke of her with feelings of utmost reverence. My grandfather grieved for her as long as he lived and never thought of marrying again. Although Mary Tipton Ross died at an early age and no pictures or likenesses are in existance so far as I know, I have pictured her in my mind as a good and beautiful woman. One who has left the stamp of her character on many of the Rosses of today. As each ancestor leaves some imprint or stamp on the new generation, I sometimes find myself trying to peer behind the screen, so as to speak, to discover if possible who has contributed those peculiarities, mannerisms and traits which we find living today in the present generation. I believe I have found some of these traits belonging to Mary Tipton Ross.

F. E. Ross

Please note that some of Frank Ross' claims are inaccurate - such as Charlotte Natcher was not born in Holland, her family is from Germany, but did come to America via Rotterdam. Also, John and Charlotte were married after the Revolutionary War according to church records. However, other claims may be accurate. It has never been confirmed that John Ross was related to George Ross, signer of the Declaration of Independence, but it is certainly possible.