Many people when they start researching their families are confused as to the variations
in spelling of their family name.
In the early days, many people could not read or write. Most of the immigrants had
accents, in our case, German, which made them difficult to understand. The person
who was writing their name, such as a census taker, spelled the name the way it
sounded to them.
In the Crouse family, we see lots of examples of this. Our earliest known ancestor,
Melchior Kraus, came over on the Ship Friendship in 1739. The book, "Pennsylvania
German Pioneers" by Strassburger and Hinke lists Melchior (M) Kraus as taking the
Oath to the Government at the courthouse in Philadelphia 3 Sep 1739, a Palatine
who imported on the Ship Friendship, Wm. Vitrey, Commander, from Rotterdam,
but last from Deal in England. (M) indicated he could not write. The book "Names
of Foreigners Who Took the Oath of Allegiance" lists Michael Kraus in the list of
passengers imported in the Ship Friendship, Wm. Vittery, Commander, from Rotterdam,
qualified 3 Sep 1739. The original list (also in the book) lists Malchi Grous, age 30.
Our next known record of the family is from the Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church,
New Holland, Lancaster Co., PA, where the baptisms of Melchior Krauss's 2 sons,
Johann Wendel and Johannes were recorded in 1740 & 1744.
Another example of variations in the Crouse name is Harrison Crouse, one of the 9
Union soldier sons of Martin & Susannah Crouse. He was enlisted in Company A,
43rd Regiment, Indiana Volunteers as Harrison Crows. In his pension papers is a
questionaire that was sent to all pensioners dated Jan 2, 1915 addressed to Harrison
Crows. This questionaire asked the names of his wife and children, living or dead.
Harrison lists his wife as Martha Jane Addy Crouse, lists 9 children with the last
name of Crouse, and signs his name Harrison Crows. According to family history
Harrison spelled his name Crows because he was afraid he would lose his pension
if he spelled it correctly. This extended to his tombstone in Devore Cemetery, Jasper
Co., IL which says Harrison Crows, even tho his parents, brother Frederick, children,
and other family members are buried in the same cemetery with the name Crouse
on their stones.
Crouse, North Carolina is a town in Lincoln County and was iincorporated in 1907.
The population is approximately 600. The latitude of Crouse is 35.420N, the longitude
is -81.305W and the elevation is 873 feet. It os about 25 miles NW of Charlotte, NC.
The settlement of Crouse, North Carolina, was established around 1840 and was named after Dr.
William L. Crouse, a physician who built the first house in the community. Dr. Crouse is not
a direct descendant of Philip. Philip Crouse was born about 1761 in the Province of Zeeland in the
Netherlands. When Philip was young, presumably with his parents, he emigrated from probably
Rotterdam to Philadelphia around 1763 to 1768. It is generally believed that Philip had at least
two brothers, John and Peter. John Crouse, the direct ancestor of L. William Crouse, was a farmer
in the Beaverdam Creek and Indian Creek area. He married Sarah Mauney. The other brother,
Peter Crouse, also lived in the same area and married Anna Carpenter. Some evidence points to his
occupation as being a gunsmith.