Category: Jerome Holgate Fabrication

Categories: Frauds and Fabrications

In 1848, Jerome Bonaparte Holgate wrote American Genealogy: Being a History of Some of the Early Settlers of North America and Their Descendants, from Their First Emigration to the Present Time .... United States.

In this book, he alleges the Rapalje family was headed by one Gaspard Colet de Rapalje, born in France, at Châtillon sur Loire, in 1505.

The problem? This person never existed. Nor did any of the people he created to justify this line. From the very date of publishing this, it was refuted by well-known genealogists throughout the years including James Riker, Frank Allaben, and George E. McCracken.

Unfortunately with the advent of the Internet and repetitions of this information in various other genealogical books, the fraudulent Coligny-Rapalje line related to Gaspard Colet de Rapalje has come back from the dead.

Including on WikiTree, the American Families of Historic Lineage, for example, repeats this erroneous claim and enhances the information with even more fanciful tales.

In 2005, John Blythe Dobson wrote an article for the Annals of Genealogical Research documenting all of the reasons why this line is a falsehood entitled "The Fraudulent Coligny-Rapalje Descent", and presenting all of the sources and reasons why this is so.

Other profiles outside of the Rapalje/Janssen/Coligny/Colet family may be affected as well if similar issues exist with other families in Holgate's book.

This page exists to highlight all of the profiles affected by this fraudulent fabrication of a line and provide links to books that repeated the claim as well as a permanent link to the article that helps us disprove it

The article that goes through everything wrong with the Coligny-Rapalje line: John Blythe Dobson, “The fraudulent Coligny-Rapalje descent,” Annals of Genealogical Research Vol. 2, No. 1 (2006) at http://www.genlit.org/agr/viewarticle.php?id=10

Refutation by James Riker: Riker, James. The annals of Newtown, in Queens County, New York; containing its history from its first settlement, together with many interesting facts concerning the adjacent towns. New-York, D. Fanshaw, 1852.

Refutation by Frank Allaben: Allaben, Frank. The Ancestry of Leander Howard Crall: Monographs On the Crall, Haff, Beatty, Ashfordby, Billesby, Heneage, Langton, Quadring, Sandon, Fulnetby, Newcomen, Wolley, Cracroft, Gascoigne, Skipwith, Plantagenet, Meet, Van Ysselsteyn, Middagh, Bergen, And De Rapalje Families, With Coat Armor, Pedigree Charts, And Documentary Appendices New York: Grafton Press, 1908. page 269

Refutation by George E. McCracken: George E. McCracken, “Catalyntje Trico Rapalje,” The American Genealogist 35 (1959): 193-202, at p. 193.

Original Offender's Book: Holgate, Jerome Bonaparte. American Genealogy: Being a History of Some of the Early Settlers of North America and Their Descendants, from Their First Emigration to the Present Time .... United States, J. Munsell, 1851. https://www.google.com/books/edition/American_Genealogy/VUNnAAAAMAAJ?hl=en&gbpv=0

Repeated Claims:

  • Editors: John Howard Brown, William S. Pelletreau. American Families of Historic Lineage, Long Island Edition. United States, Higginson Book Company, 1997.
  • Editors: John Howard Brown, William S. Pelletreau. American Families of Historic Lineage. United States, National Americana Society, 1919.
  • Fernald, Charles Augustus. Universal International Genealogy and of the Ancient Fernald Families. Charles Augustus Fernald, 1909. Note: HIGHLY recommend you see this page about this source https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Space:Charles_Augustus_Fernald_Genealogy_Fabrication
  • Ross, Peter. A History of Long Island, Vol. 3. United States, Jazzybee Verlag, 2017.
  • Gibson, James E of the Pennsylvania Historical Society in Philadelphia. “Some Ancestors of the Rappelye Family.” Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine, published by Genealogical Society of Utah, 1937, pp. 9–13.

Person Profiles (20)

A

abt 1495 Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium - 1560

B

1482 Valenciennes, Netherlands - 1572

D

1549 Antwerpen, Hertogdom Brabant, Habsburgse Nederlanden - 23 Feb 1606
abt 1505 Chalillion-Sur Loire, France - abt 1577

J

1512 Antwerpen, Hertogdom Brabant, Habsburgse Nederlanden
abt 1516 Antwerpen, Hertogdom Brabant, Habsburgse Nederlanden - 1590
abt 1510 Holland, Nederland
abt 1490 Antwerpen, Antwerpen, Belgium - abt 1530

J cont.

1537 Antwerpen, Hertogdom Brabant, Habsburgse Nederlanden - 1578
1498 Antwerpen, Belgium - 1550

R

abt 1552 Valenciennes, Hainaut, Spanish Netherlands, Holy Roman Empire
24 Aug 1596 LaRochelle, France - abt 1663
abt 1460 France

R cont.

1525 France - 1568
abt 1480 Valenciennes, Netherlands - 1567

S

abt 1597 Salers, Upper Auvergne, France

U

abt 1535 Antwerpen, Hertogdom Brabant, Habsburgse Nederlanden - 23 Feb 1606




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