The Crostons in Durrus are generally weavers or labourers. There are references to family member sin 19th century census reproduced in the Cole Family History unfortunately the records were destroyed in the Public Record Office in 1922 but the Cole history has survived.Some who emigrated to the USA in the 19th century did not fare well.
Frank Croston’s family probably moved around. His father’s house in the Griffith Valuation is very low insistent with a cottage but with no garden, the Landlord Daniel Burke, Senior, he in turn a tenant of John B.Gumbleton. This is consistent with the patters of weavers and labourers staying within an area but moving.
Courtesy Heather Croston, USA:
His parents were Francis Croston and Avisa Levis. They arrived in New York 22 June 1858. Their daughter Ann was born in 1844 Schull on the same plot of land where my family lived. In the record it says “of Durrus Parish”. On the passenger list her name is Ann Ducloe (Dukelow) . I don’t have a record of her marriage, or know who her husband was. (this is new info for me) They settled in Mt. Morris, Livingston, NY (south of Rochester) When Francis “Frank” was 18 he moved to Rochester. 2 years later his parents had passed away and left the children with land in Mt. Morris. I believe this is how he started his career in real estate.
I suspect his father was the Francis Croston on the 1850 Griffiths Valuation of Kilcrohane, Reenacuppul. This is not far from Moulamill. The low valuation would be consistent with a weaver’s cottage:
In the History of Rochester it says that his family was English and he was born in New York, But all early records show this is not true. He seems to have led people to believe this later in his life, maybe because at the time Irish were discriminated against. Many US born felt that the Irish immigrants were taking jobs from them. The other reason may be that the family identified as English even though they were born in Ireland. I’m not sure.
The invention of a spurious genealogy is relatively common witness the Whites (Lord Bantry). This is something Bantry antiquarian Paddy O’Keeffe researched and determined it was bogus.
Also the description of the family in Lancashire is very embellished. The town was not thought to be named after the family but the other way around. Also the story about the coat of arms: I’ve found no evidence that it’s true. So don’t take any of that as fact.
In the Croston Parish records I have seen some names that are also found in West Cork: Wilkinson, something similar to Roycroft etc.. and have wondered if other Lancashire families went to Cork at the same time. Perhaps settled on the same land. I haven’t really had time to research England yet, outside of the Irish lines that immigrated there. That will be next if I can make a DNA connection.
There were many Croston- Sullivan/ McCarthy/ Driscoll marriages, mostly in Skibbereen, but some in Durrus.
Father’s Will, He is illiterate:
Census Rochester 1870, note also Baker family probably from Rossmore, Durrus, one of the Bakes was the head of the ’99 Cousin Clan’ (families such as Dukelow, Attridge, Gosnell, Baker, Gallagher, Skuce, Shannon) from Durrus/Schull who ran Rochester City Council through the Republican Party for many years in the 19th century:
When Frank moved to Rochester from Mt. Morris he boarded with Richard Varian. He was a broom maker for a few years with his brother William. When Frank started working in real estate William took over the business. Frank was also involved with helping to liquidate a hardware store’s inventory after the owner died.
When Frank as boarding in Rochester it was with Richard Varian listed as a labourer. It may be a coincidence but Frank and his brother William were in the brush making business. The Varian brush business started in Cork then Dublin. online genealogical forums suggest the family may have originated in Rooska. In the 18th century the Varians there were prosperous ‘yeomen’ farmers, intermarried with Fergusons and Roycrofts of Durrus. They appear in the Bantry House leases and in various deeds.
In 1848 Isaac Varian in Cork is listed a a member of the Council of the Irish Confederation of Young Irelanders a reforming political association, perhaps a vague connection of local political consciousness in the West Cork area as in 99 cousins in Rochester: