The Grand Rapids, Michigan Ansteys

by Gary. M. Ansteychief researcher of the Anstey story project.

Many thanks to Julia for her help in constructing this pedigree

Overview of the Grand Rapids, Michigan Ansteys

The Grand Rapids, Michigan Ansteys of Kent County in America are headed by Francis Anstey, born in c1811 in Warwickshire, who emigrated to America in c1844. We are still trying to connect him to the overall Anstey pedigree.

Francis Anstey (b c1811 Warwickshire)

Francis Anstey, known as Frank Anstey, was born in Warwickshire in c1811 (per the 1841 Census). He married Charlotte Price (b c1813) in Coventry, Holy Trinity in 1836 (both were resident of Coventry, Holy Trinity at the time, neither had been previously married, witnesses were John Masters and Maria Trippas). They had children:

  • Francis Anstey (b 1838 Coventry, died before 1841?);
  • James Anstey (b 1840 – later sources say 1837 – in Warwick, married Lizzie (1837-1909, buried at Mount Rest Cemetery, Saint Johns, Clinton County, Michigan) before 1860. In the 1860 Census “James Anstey, butcher, born 1838 in England” and “Elizabeth Anstey born 1837 New York” were living in St Louis, Missouri with James‘ mother Charlotte King and her ‘King‘ family (see below). In the 1870 Census James was a “[cattle] drover” living in Bingham, Clinton, Michigan with his wife Lizzie, brother Thomas and mother Charlotte King. By the 1880 Census James was a “cattle drover” in St Johns, Clinton, Michigan, living with his wife Lizzie (it appears therefore that they had no children). In 1892 “George L. Jessup purchased a half interest in the elevator at Pompeii, Gratiot, Michigan having as a partner James Anstey. After they had been a year together Mr. Jessup purchased the latter’s interest and since that time has conducted the business alone“. In 1901 James was a landowner in Washington township, Gratiot. In the 1910 Census James, a widower, was living with his brother John B. Anstey and a servant Alma Derry in Elba, Gratiot, Michigan – he was a stock buyer by trade and still living there in the 1920 Census. James died in Michigan, America in 1926, buried at Mount Rest Cemetery, Saint Johns, Clinton County, Michigan – note: there is a “James J Anstey/ James J. Amsteys” in the American Civil War database in Michigan, however we think this is actually ‘James G. Anstiss’ who married Martha J Anstiss and not connected to the Anstey family);
  • Elizabeth Anstey (b 1842 Kidderminster, known as Libbie. In the 1870 Census she was living in Bingham, Clinton, Michigan with her brother John – she was a milliner. In the 1880 Census she was living in St Johns, Clinton, Michigan with her mother Charlotte King. Libbie married Philimon Taylor in Clallam, Washington, America in 1898);
  • Thomas Anstey (b 1844 Staten Island, America. In the 1870 Census, Thomas was a “[cattle] drover” living with his brother James and mother Charlotte [King] in Bingham, Clinton, Michigan. In the 1880 Census Thomas was a farmer married to Ellen (who was Canadian, surname probably Cayton) living in Bingham, Clinton, Michigan with their two daughters Hattie Anstey (b 1875 Michigan, died 1883 buried at Mount Rest Cemetery, St Johns Clinton, Michigan) and Charlotte Anstey (b 1876 Clinton, Michigan, married Mr Wyman and died in 1963 in Gratiot, Michigan). Thomas Anstey was living with only his wife Ellen in the 1900 & 1910 Censuses in Gratiot, Michigan. He died in 1912 in Washington Township, Gratiot, Michigan); and
  • John Bethal Anstey (b 1846 New York. In the 1870 Census he was living in Bingham, Clinton, Michigan with his sister Libbie – he was a railroad conductor. John married Alice M. (possibly Alice Mary Rockwell) and they had children Birdie M. Anstey (b 1872 Grand Rapids, Kent, Michigan) and Frank Sidney Anstey (b 1876 Grand Rapids – see below). In the 1880 Census Alice Anstey (wife) was living with her two children in Grand Rapids, Kent, Michigan. In 1888 John B. Anstey was a “conductor” in South Red Bluff, Tehama, California. In 1894 John B. Anstey remarried Mina B. Lewis (1874-1908, buried Mount Rest Cemetery) in Gratiot, Michigan, however there was some scandal as the ‘Saline Observer‘ reported “Miss Nora Hull of Pompeii [Gratiot] made all preparations for marrying John B. Anstey. Her parents bought all the necessary furniture, the guests had been invited and everything was arranged. Two days before the time Anstey married another lady. A breach of promise suit for $10,000 is now on at the Gratiot court“. In 1901 John was a landowner in Washington Township, Gratiot. In the 1910 Census John B. Anstey, a widower, was living with his brother James and a servant Alma Derry in Elba, Gratiot, Michigan – he was living off his own income. John was at some point a farmer and he died in 1915, buried at Mount Rest Cemetery, Saint Johns, Clinton County, Michigan).

In the 1841 Census the family were living at St Thomas, Birmingham (together with the Oldaker family) – Francis Anstey was an “osler” aged 30. We know that the family emigrated to America in c1844 – we are currently trying to attach this family to the overall Anstey pedigree and seek further clues.

Francis Anstey likely died very soon after 1846 (between 1846 and 1852, probably in New York) because Charlotte Anstey remarried to William King (a butcher), having sons in New York William King (b 1852); Edward King (b 1853); and George King (b 1855). In the 1860 Census Charlotte King and her ‘King’ family were living in St Louis, Missouri with her son James Anstey and his wife. In the 1870 Census Charlotte King and her son William King were living in Bingham, Clinton, Michigan with her sons James Anstey and Thomas Anstey; she was a cook. In the 1880 Census Charlotte King was living with her daughter Elizabeth Anstey at St Johns, Clinton, Michigan.

In 1894 when John B. Anstey remarried (per above) Charlotte was called “Charlotte Miller“, so perhaps she remarried again between 1880 and 1894, or perhaps it is an error.

Frank Sidney Anstey (b 1876 Grand Rapids)

Frank Sidney Anstey was born in 1876 in Grand Rapids to father John Bethal Anstey (see above). He was a farmer who married Bertha E. Stedman in 1896 in Briley Township, Montmorency, Michigan and had quite a large family in Michigan being:

  • Marion Ruth Anstey (b 1898, married William John Mills in 1918 in Ann Arbor, Washtenaw, Michigan);
  • Clifton Wolverton Anstey (b 1900, in the Draft Registration for World War One in September 1918, Clifton stated that he was an unmarried hardware clerk living in Gratiot, Michigan. He married Charlotte Marie Kimball in 1933 in Holt, Ingham Michigan and then Eva Luella Drake in 1944 in Holt. As far as we know Clifton had no sons and he died in 1983);
  • Celia O Anstey (b 1902, married Max Leon Foster in Lansing, Ingham, Michigan in 1928);
  • Violet May Anstey (b 1905, married Otto Theodore Pence in 1925);
  • Ella Jane Anstey (b 1909, married Clyde C. Corwin in 1927 in Lansing);
  • Nellie Laverne Anstey (b 1911, married Donald St Clair in 1935 in Lansing); and
  • James B. Anstey (b 1917, married Pauline Lucile Baker in 1939 in Lansing, having a daughter Joan Kay Anstey (b 1940, died an infant). He died in 1995)

In 1900 the family were at Allis township Onaway village, Presque Isle, Michigan; in 1910 Maple Forest Township, Crawford, Michigan; and by 1920 they were in Lansing, Ingham, Michigan where Frank Sidney Anstey died in 1953, buried at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens, DeWitt, Clinton, Michigan.

Further Details on the Grand Rapids, Michigan Ansteys

We are actively on the lookout for Grand Rapids, Michigan Anstey experts alive today who are willing to add their findings and knowledge to this project. We are particularly interested in research regarding Grand Rapids, Michigan Ansteys who fought in World War One, preferably with personal souvenirs such as letters sent by the soldiers or military photos etc. 

Anybody who has such expertise and inclination, please contact us at

We have already uploaded bits of information and documentation about the Grand Rapids, Michigan Ansteys, and continue to upload more all the time (see Project Updates), however it is spread over various segments of the website.

The best way to find said information is to enter ‘Grand Rapids, Michigan’ in the search box at the bottom of this page and a list of relevant pages will appear.

Anybody who finds any mistakes on this page, please contact us at and we will correct it.

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