PRESENTATION AT PAJ HOUSE: Dedication of Family Genealogy Chart of Mary Rutherford JAY
John Jay Du Bois, MD. August 14, 2013
Thanks to Suzanne and her group and BOT for what they have been able to do to make this house so wonderful..
20 year history. Long struggle with several parts and individuals involved in this restoration. Memory of Dee Dee Paschal one of the original driving forces. Also to Diane Milstein our nemesis who died early this year.
Original group lead by Dee Dee, the SORE group with Rhoda Kornriech, Catherine Crane froM birds, Kitty Arresty who with Dee Dee had a huge desire to save this property. Suddenly the JAY Coalition and it was a large, committed and tough group.
Toady we are blessed to have Suzanne at the helm and she and her group have been able to bring to fruition what was started 20 years ago. These have been wonderful changes. The latest is an agreement with the State to manage and restore the property surrounding the house. Very exciting.
My purpose today is to dedicate the huge chart that was done by Mary Rutherford Jay in 1935 and then redone in 1965 tracing our JAY genealogy from Sylvester Jay, who was born in 1560! The Chart is full of wonderful names of our past heritage. Bayard, Van Courtland, DeVries, Astor, Livingston, Rutherfurd, Van Brugh, Pierpont, French,, Clarkson, McVikar. It shows the strong Hugenot and Dutch ancestry of our past with a touch of Scottish and quite a bit of English blood.
We had a very close tie with the Van Cortlands in our early geneaolgy. Peter Jay married Mary Van Cortland, the daughter of Mayor Jacobus Van Cortland and Eva De Vries and Peters sister, Frances married Mary’s brother, Frederick Van Courtland. These families continued to be intertwined in later generations.
Mary Rutherford Jay, was the unmarried daughter of the Reverand Peter Augustus Jay, a granddaughter of John Clarkson Jay. She was very interested in garden design and became a well respected garden architect. At the time of World War II, she served as president of the Jay Cemetery, and was responsible for negotiating sale of land from the Deveraux to enlarge the cemetery to its maximum size under NY State law. 2.85 acres.
She also wrote and published a small booklet on the history of the Jay Cemetery which was distributed to all members of the family in 1947.
One of William Jay’s granddaughters, Anna Jay, married the German Ambassador to the United States, Hans Lothar Von Sweinitz, and moved to Germany. One of her daughters married August Bodo Wilheim Von Trott zu Solz. Their son Frederick Adam Von Trott zu Solz was a member of a group, disenchanted with Hitler, planned his assassination. When this failed to kill Hitler he was tried as a traitor and hung with piano wire.
At the end of the war, granddaughter, Victoria Countess Hulenberg Von Schwieitz, was living in desperate shape in Germany. She received a note that a CARE package had arrived. She spent two days on bus to get it, and of course it was was MRJ book on the Jay Cemetery. Send food or I will join!
This was all confirmed when we had an unexpected visit from Michael Klausen several years ago. This tall man arrived at my office, and Eva Stern who was acting as secretary burst out, “It’s a cousin” and started to babble in German.
He had come to Rye to check on his ancestry.
So I am so glad that this tribute to our genealogy is here. Enjoy looking at it. There are so many stories that relate to it. Did you know that Eve Jay, JJ oldest sister, step-daughter married and moved to Canada having married a loyalist. Her family moved into the emerging territories of the mid west and Canada, married Indians and all sorts of other adventurmes.
At any rate, as Supreme Court Justice, Harry Blackman said during his visit to Rye.
“It must be a matter of great pride to be members of an old distinguished family that contributed so much to early America, that believes in education and leadership then and now, that has sensed the merits, almost the sacredness, of family ties and of what is expected of its members in each generation.”