Thursday, May 19, 2011

Jarvis Family Genealogy

This is a slightly edited repeat of a comment I made yesterday morning on the George and Ann Prior Jarvis family message board.

Margaret Jarvis Overson, the daughter of Margaret Jarvis and Charles Defriez Jarvis, spent many years working on a large blue book containing the genealogy of the Jarvis and Overson families. It is an amazing compilation and the amount of work and expense that it took to put it together back in the days before the internet is mind-boggling. She published the 710-page book in 1957 and there are various copies in family and library collections. We are trying to make sure a copy of it is available online.

Right now, I am going through my Jarvis Family Tree, making sure the family is complete. I am working to make sure all the children and grandchildren and their families are properly entered and documented. I am finding that in most cases, Margaret Overson's data was correct. When I find information that disagrees with a family tree created by someone else, I am relying on primary or other secondary sources to choose the most accurate data.

So far I have worked through the George Frederick Jarvis Family, the Margaret Jarvis Family, and am currently working on the Ann Jarvis Milne Family. I am very appreciative of those who have created thorough family trees on Ancestry, since that drastically cuts down the amount of work it takes to process these hundreds of people. I've particularly relied on the trees of Doug M- and Alexandra H-, and others too numerous to mention.

So if you are a Jarvis descendant, what can you do to help create this master family tree for the Jarvis Family Association?

1. Send a copy of your documented family line back to George and Ann Prior Jarvis in GED format so I can add it. My email address is on the sidebar.

2. Let me know if you have done research back past George and Ann and have compiled accurate family trees of the Jarvis and Prior families in England. I can see family trees on Ancestry and New Family Search, but some of the information may be due to computer matching, and I haven't looked closely yet to see what is correct and what is due to computer matches and mismatches.

3. Look at the current family trees in your line of descent and let us know if the information is correct.

4. Send family photos and original documents that you may have in your family collections, particularly of George and Ann Prior Jarvis children and grandchildren.

5. Go through your family line on New Family Search, the genealogy site of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, if you have access. If you have documented names, dates, and other events, select the correct information and add documentation. Don't select information unless you have proof, please, and when you select places, make sure they are in the format City or Town, County, State, Country with everything spelled out, checked for accuracy, and correctly punctuated, for example, St. George, Washington, Utah, United States. Names and places should not be written in all caps. Please do not change information on common pioneer ancestors unless you have documentation.

6. If the biography of your Jarvis ancestor (a child or grandchild of George and Ann Prior Jarvis) from the Margaret Jarvis Overson book is not on The Ancestor Files, let me know and I will add it and provide it to the Family Association website. So far I have Samuel Walter Jarvis and his two wives, Margaret and Charles Defriez Jarvis, Heber and Susan Jarvis, Emeline and Thomas Cottam, and Victoria and George Miles. See here:


  1. The Jarvis/DeFriez Book was given to the Mesa Regional Family History Center to scan over a year ago. It was scanned and supposed to be available in the Family History Archives. However, no books have shown up as scanned for over a year, so we do not know when it will appear. FamilySearch said they would catch up with the scanning by June of this year. It hasn't happened yet.

  2. Is there any news on the availability of this book? I am searching the Pearl Augustus research material on film at present, and am finding it fascinating! I would love to have access to this book. My interest is the early English data as Mark Jarvis, brother of George, is my 2X great grandfather. So far I have found 2 additional wives for Mark and looked at the interesting life of his daughters Ruth Jarvis and Eugenie Jarvis. There are also some amazing letters in existence to George and Mark's older sister Phillis Jarvis (Robinson)from Mark's NZ children by Rosina.

  3. Hi FamilySleuth,

    That's great timing to be looking into these questions. The book just went online. See one of my most recent posts:

    The Blue Jarvis-DeFriez Book: Exciting News from FamilySearch Family Books

    And here's the direct link to download the book:

    Overson, Margaret Godfrey Jarvis. George Jarvis And Joseph George De Friez Genealogy. Mesa, Arizona: Margaret J. Overson, 1957.

    Do let us know what you find out about the Mark Jarvis family!

  4. After clicking through the link the following message is returned:
    Error in Delivery
    Object cannot be viewed due to a general problem, please contact your System Administrator

  5. Thanks for mentioning the broken link. They've evidently changed the system for urls. The best way to find the book is to visit Family History Books and search for Margaret Overson. The blue book is usually the first one to come up.

    1. The book comes right up for me. Here is the Perma-link