The Cresap Society exists
to recognize the contributions of our common ancestor -- and his
wife -- to the taming of the American Frontier.
Thomas Cresap, his wife-- the former Hannah Johnson, and their
children travelled on horseback from their home near Havre de
Grace, Harford county, Maryland, to the untracked frontier of
Western Maryland. There they settled, built a home and called
the settlement Skipton, after Thomas' childhood home in
The town today is Old Town, Allegany county, Maryland. The
site of that frontier cabin has been built over several times,
but a corner of it is believed to be visible as part of the
foundation of the National Park Service building which sits
between the Potomac River and the C & O Canal at Old Town.
On the other side of the canal is another Cresap home, this
one once used as a jail.
To these houses travelled every person, white or Indian,
moving along the river. George Washington stopped here often on
his travels; the Indians called Cresap "Big Spoon" in recognition
of his plentiful hospitality.
Thomas Cresap was a colorful, robust character on the
frontier. His legacy of over 11,000 descendants is equally
robust and colorful.
The links in these paragraphs no longer respond. We're
trying to re-locate the material.
To read more about him, from a more unbiased view than
ours, the visitor might wish to check out
this essay on The Making of the National Road, which is now
roughly I-48 through Allegany and Garrett counties. An
Frontiersmen will be available a few more months.
Cresap influence can also be seen in other areas, such as Brooke
The Society, of course, refutes the calumny that Cresap was
either present at or responsible for the massacre of Chief
Logan's family. Logan may have made the accusation and Thomas
Jefferson evidently believed it, but all outside evidence tends
to argue against the likelihood. The late T. Don Scott wrote an
excellent treatise on this subject (see our Store).
In 1905, the Cresap Chapter NSDAR was formed in Cumberland,
MD. The Cresap Society and Cresap Chapter have a long history, which was
celebrated by a joint meeting to celebrate their 100th anniversary as we had at their 50th
anniversary. This Chapter meets April through December, and welcomes Cresap associates.
Contact them via National Society, DAR.
To check our Family Tree, at least the
first five generations of it, click here.
Our next reunion will be in 2009. It will be held in the Cumberland, Maryland area.
Additional details and registration information will be available here.
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Content of these pages is © 1996, 1997,
1998, 2003, 2006, 2007 by The Cresap Society, all rights reserved.