with Selena and Martha
Merrill, Wisconsin 1891
Current Project Status
November 14, 2013 - Averill Project Update
Our approach in 2008 to the construction of this website was to research individual family lines as we were contacted by you, the living descendants. It became apparent to us that this was causing a great deal of repeat research so we stopped this approach, and began a more systematic search, starting with the 1790 census. At present we have completed 1790 through 1900 censuses, and are approximately half-way through the 1910. Hopefully next year we will finish the 1920, 1930, and 1940 censuses. As of last week, we stand at a total of 21,800 names and 15,000 documents. Some of the documents are wills, bible records, birth certificates, marriage records, etc., however, most are digital copies of census pages. All information gathered is being sourced so that future generations will be able to determine if this information comes from original records or simply family hearsay.
On the averillproject.com website, we have 14 PDF reports. The first one covers William “of Ipswich” Averell for the first two generations, and the others cover each one of the family lines from the third generation down. So, for a complete report on your line, print William “of Ipswich”, and then select the name of your third generation ancestor to have a complete report. Remember that for privacy issues, I have chosen to cut off all of the PDF reports at approximately the year 1920. Should any descendant want their data from 1920 to 2013, please give me a call so that I can generate a complete report; hence, we will be assured that information stays within your immediate family. For those who have previously printed the original PDF reports, I would recommend that those be destroyed and replaced with the updated versions, as there have been numerous corrections and additions.
Progress since March 2011 – 2 ½ years
The following table outlines the number of pages ADDED to the 2011 PDF reports. All totaled, we now have 1,617 pages, savable and printable from the website, an increase of 503 pages. Remember, this is 1,617 pages that stop in 1920. A complete printed report of the entire database would be 2,811 pages, and is growing weekly. For the last 2.5 years, we have averaged 200 new names per month.
The number of pages added to each report since 2011 are outlined below:
- William “of Ipswich” +2 pages
- Ephram, son of Sarah the Witch +1 page
- Job, son of Thomas +12 pages
- Benjamin, son of Thomas +13 pages
The following are third generation grandchildren of William “of Ipswich” and children of William, Jr.:
- William III +31 pages
- Nathaniel +10 pages
- Job +95 pages
- John +124 pages
- Ebenezer +0
- Thomas +51 pages
- Abigail +0
- Paul +50 pages
- Isaac +114 pages
- Mary +0
We welcome any editing assistance that you may be able to provide, either by email or hard copies through the mail. It is impossible for research of this magnitude not to contain errors. Please assist us in our efforts to add information and correct errors.
July 2013: Trip to Chipping Norton, England
Click here for narrative and photos
The complete census search from 1790 to 1900 was finished.
February 2010: Salt Lake City Trip
For those of you who have never been to the Mormon's Genealogical Family
History Library in Salt Lake City, it is an easy and pleasant trip. We
flew into SLC, caught the free shuttle for a 10 minute ride to our hotel.
The hotel is on the same block as the library, so just a short walk around
the corner each day. Click here for photos of our Salt Lake City trip
We worked on the 2nd floor, where thousands of microfilm records are housed.
Our focus and goal was to scan all Averill deed records prior to 1850
for all counties in Maine. We had quite a production line: Tresa reviewed
the indexes and identified which film rolls contains records. Gordon pulled
the film rolls, located volume and page, then took over to Toni who scanned
the deeds onto our flash drive. By the end of the week, we had scanned
over 1600 pages of documents.
Library Hours we worked: Monday 8am-5pm. Tue-Fri 8am-8pm.
Next Step: over the coming months, they will be reviewed and linked
on FamilyTreeMaker to the proper families. Un-matched documents will from
time to time be reviewed to hopefully determine the lineage of some non-linked
In September 2009 Tresa spent several
weeks in Maine and New York gathering
200 pages of copies of original documents. This information has been entered
into the database. We are working on a complete search of the 1850 and
1860 census. Completion date unknown.
of August 2009, we have transcribed all 1000
pages of birth, death, and marriage records from the Clara Avery book onto Family Tree Maker. At the present time, our database contains in
excess of 14,112 names descending
from William. This includes Averill and non-Averill surnames. We have
now transcribed all known information pertinent to William of Ipswich,
and his son, William, Jr.
In June, July, August 2009 we entered
information on our Revolutionary War ancestors from the Daughters of The American Revolution (DAR) and the Sons of The
American Revolution (SAR) records. Current
information indicates that at least 30 Averills served. Those Patriots
are indicated on the lineage
chart. Should your family have any information concerning these Patriots,
please contact us.
November 2008 and April 2009 postcards were mailed to 1650 Averill and
in the United States. Response has been good. We
have been contacted by over 150 living Averills, of which 64% have been
linked to William of Ipswich, and 36% are unidentified line. 1
Averill is from the French line, 1 is from a German line, 1 is from a
New Zealand line, 1 is from a Chile line, and the remaining we have been
unable to tie in to our William due to insufficient information.
November 2008, based on a contact from the 2nd mailing, we identified a French
line of Averills beginning with Paschal Averil, born 1807, arrived from
France in 1854 settling in Kankahee County, IL with his wife Louisa Collins
and their 9 yr old son Narcisse. In 1857 they moved to Douglas County,
Kansas. There were approximately 80 descendents of Narcisse Averil, of
which 40 had Averill surnames (various spellings.) Thank
you very much to Cheryl Haines and numerous researchers for providing
It appears that William
of Ipswich had only two male children, William, Jr., and Thomas, who had
descendants. It interesting that all 72 of the identified living Averills
tie into William, Jr., as we have yet to find a descendant of Thomas.
William, Jr. had 14 children, of which 3 were females and 11 males, of
which 8 males have had families. It has been exciting to find out that
those of you who have contacted us relate to the third generation as follows:
3 to William III, 1 to Nathaniel, 17 to Job, 20 to John, 0 to Ebenezer,
10 to Thomas, 17 to Paul, 27 to Isaac.
We will also make this information available on disk in Family Tree Maker
or GEDCOM format for your personal use, free of charge.
New Zealand Averills ~ We have been contacted by Ian Averill from
New Zealand. Research indicates that most of the New Zealand Averills
descend from the Averills of Staffordshire, UK. (John Gatey Averill (b.
later, two cousins, Alfred Walter Averill, (b.1865) and Edward (Ted) Averill
(b.1864) immigrated to New Zealand in 1894 and 1885 respectively.
Alfred Walter Averill was the Archbishop of New Zealand 1925-1940. Wikipedia.
Edward (Ted) Averill came out to manage a station (large farm) for a bank.
He ended up with a good sized holding which he passed on to his offspring.
(Most of his known history was written up in a book called "Hey Days
and Dray Days, A History of Olrig Station 1859-1998" by R.J. Patterson.)
It appears that most of the Averill's in NZ descend from those two. To
date, current work by the New Zealand Averills indicates 646 descendents
from these two cousins.
However, there may have been other immigrants in later years.
It appears that possibly two males of the Staffordshire clan immigrated
to the United States in the 1800s.
Thank you, Ian, for completing your DNA test. DNA results indicate that
the New Zealand branch is not related to the American William of Ispwich
UNITED STATES AVERILL
William of Ipswich-Immigrant #1, William's brother-possible Immigrant
#2; Pascal Averil (Averill) immigrated from France 1854-Immigrant #3.
Possible immigrants #4 and #5 from the John Gatey Averill Clan, Staffordshire-immigrated
possibly 1800; Possible immigrant #6 Germany, and possible immigrant #7
We currently believe that there are approximately 2,000 Averill families
in the United States. We hope that we will be able to find at least 30
male surname Averill descendents to complete this test. This will support
or refute the theory that most Averills in the United States descend from
William "of Ipswich."
For the Avery line, we need at least 5 male surname descendents who have
a well-documented lineage back to William of Ipswich.
Information concerning testing may be found at www.FamilyTreeDNA.com.
It is highly recommended that only the 37 marker test be used. This test
costs $149.00. ** Should you be interested, BEFORE purchasing this test,
please contact the webmaster to inquire as to the availability of a possible
Click here to
read boring DNA information
FamilyTreeDNA has recently announced a drop in the price for the Y-37
marker test from $149 to $119. As a result an effort is being made this
month to contact and identify two volunteers from each of 7 of the third
generation. As of 1/2/2010 we have 1 from William, 1 from Nathaniel, 2
from Job, 1 from John, 2 from Thomas, 1 from Paul, and 1 from Isaac. Thank
you very much, John, Phil, Brian, Earl, Nate, Dana, Jon, Eric, and Ian.
DNA testing will provide a clear database for which Averills who are unable
to tie themselves directly to William may confirm or refute their relationship.
For those of you questioning security issues concerning DNA testing, your
tests are referenced by a number only and a recent Federal Law ensures
protection of confidentiality. To obtain more information go to: FamilyTreeDNA.com
If you are intrested in the DNA Test, please contact Gordon
Question: Is it true that there is a Salem Witch Trial connection?
Answer: Yes. William of Ipswich had a daughter, Sarah Averell,
who married John Wildes. It was Sarah Averell Wildes that was one of the
unfortunate souls who was executed in Salem on July 19, 1692. Google Search
'Sarah Averell Wildes' to find out more information or click here for
of American Women and Wikipedia
I found this historical calendar very helpful in understanding the Witch Trials without reading mountains of books: Click here for Salem Which Trials Calendar
the Civil War General, William Woods Averell a descendent of William of
Yes, for interesting biography, see Wikipedia . To buy a film documentary about William Wooks, click here
Earl Averill, the baseball Hall of Famer, a descendent of William Averill
Yes, see Wikepedia
(Thank you Earl, Jr. for all of your help.)
Question: What is the difference in the spellings: Averill, Averell,
Answer: Between the Averill and Averell spellings,
it appears that the prevalent spelling for the first several generations
was Averell. However, by about the 4th generation, Averill seems to be
utilized by most families as it is today. (In fact Cheryell has found
a document from the 1700s from one of her lines which has Averill and Averell clearly spelled both ways within the same document.) The French Averill appears
to have landed in America in 1854 with the spelling Avril, but immediately
changed it to Averill.
Avery: This site would not exist had it not been for Clara Avery
and her extraordinary work in compiling the 2-volume book, "The Averell
- Averill - Avery Family." Clara's line of Averys clearly
links to William Averell of Ipswich. When we were doing the initial research
into living descendants, we found 1200 addresses in the United States
with the sur-name Averill, barely 100 with the sur-name Averell, and over
18,000 Averys. Thank you to Shari Avery M. for bringing to our attention,
a weakness in our research regarding the Avery line. As a result, we are
going to spend more time in the coming year tracing Clara's line of Averys
to help us get a handle on the possible number of Averys who descend from
William Averell of Ipswich. While it is possible that all 18,000 Avery
addresses in the U.S. descend from William of Ipswich, it is more likely
that there were numerous immigrants with the Avery name. We will soon
be contacting well-documented living Avery males in our line to establish
a database, so that we can compare other Averys who have not yet established
DNA testing will enable other Averys to determine if it is our Avery line
to which they may or may not be tied.
Question: Was James Averell, who was lynched in Wyoming
in 1889, a relative?
Answer: According to census records, James Averell was Canadian
born to a father from England and a mother from Scotland. Therefore it
appears that he was not related to our William of Ipswich, but his father
more recently immigrated from England to Canada. Unfortunately we know
nothing about that family but are continuing to investigate
James was in the middle of the range wars of Wyoming with Ella Watson,
the two being lynched in 1889.
The movie Heavans
Gate and the Book
Wyoming Lynching of Cattle Kate, 1889 are about the story.
do I obtain access to the 1906 Averell -
Averill - Avery 1000 page book?
IF YOU ORDER THE BOOK, YOU MUST ORDER THE 1922 SUPPLEMENT. IT IS IN THE
SUPPLEMENT THAT CLARA MAKES A MAJOR CORRECTION WHICH CHANGES MUCH OF THE
VERY FIRST CHAPTER OF HER 2-VOLUME BOOK. THE KEY THING TO REMEMBER IS
THAT WE DO NOT, REPEAT, DO NOT DESCEND FROM NICHOLAS AND DORCUS AVERELL of Kent.
THIS IS NOT OUR LINE, AND THE 1922 SUPPLEMENT CORRECTS THIS ERROR.
A) Free Online: Free digital copies are available on the Brigham Young
University digital collections.
Volume 1 (601 pages)
Volume 2 (507 pages)
Supplement (8 pages.)
The files may be viewed and printed. (NOTE: these are large files and make take a few moments to download, depending on your internet speed.)
B) Purchase a photo copy of Volumes I & II at Higginson Book Company
for $111.00. Click
Here, then locate this Item: AVERELL-AVERY Family. A record of desc.
of Wm. & Abigail Averell of Ipswich, Ma., by C.A. Avery. 1094+10p.,
2 vols. 1906 & 1914. CRITICAL NOTE: Higginson
Books does not appear to carry the 1922 Supplement, in which Clara corrects
errors in the original book.
C) If we have been able to link your complete line to William of Ipswich,
for a copy of your direct line only, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
and I will be happy
to provide a Report to you free of charge. All I ask in return is that
any corrections or additions that you identify in this Report, please
forward that information to me.
Question: One Family tradition
says that we came from Scotland, is that true?"
Answer: William Averell of Ipswich came from Chipping Norton, England.
Clara Avery originally thought that he came from Kent, England, (THIS
IS WRONG-WILLIAM DID NOT COME FROM KENT.) so in the original book one
can skip the first chapter on the Kent, England ancestry. She and other
researchers later determined that William and Abigail left Chipping Norton
for America about 1632-1635. It is possible that another line of Averills
came in through Scotland. Information from the 3rd mailing indicates that
this connection may be attributed to Palmer H. Averill, born 1806 in Canada,
may be the source of this rumor. There is currently no information that
leads us to believe that there is a Scottland connection.
Am I working on this project for material or academic interest?
Answer: Technically, neither. I remember laying on the floor in
my grandparents' living room reading the "Averill Books." This
gave me an interest in genealogy, which has turned into somewhat of an
enjoyable passion for me personally. All costs associated with this project
are being covered by me personally, including a professional Genealogist,
Tresa Tatyrek, who works about 15 hours a week on entering data on the
I ask for only two things in return:
1. Averill Descendant information
2. Scans or copies of any genealogical documents which may be helpful
to future generations.
For More Information:
If you wish to provide information or inquire about the Averill Project
Webmaster ~ Gordon Stevenson, son of Marie Averill.
email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org (Toni, Administrator)
Mailing Address on Request