CAPTAIN ROBERT CRANTON
CAPTAIN ROBERT CRANTON, ca. 1750 – 1794, was a
merchant sea captain of English ancestry, and was reported lost at sea in
married Ann Stone and came to Newfoundland with his family in the latter
part of the 18th century.
indicates that he owned at least two schooners and traded between
Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Cape Breton. Records are scanty and much is
now surmise, but based what is known of the history of that era, he probably
sailed between SW England, Newfoundland, New England,
New Brunswick−and perhaps also to and from other ports in Europe and
the Caribbean He is believed to have originally come from the Dorset area,
in the English West Country, although we may never know for sure. One source
(as recorded on his death record by his son's family) indicates that the
Captain's full name may have been William Robert or Robert William, but that
he chose to ignore either his first or middle name−as
did other Cranton's since that time. Captain Robert was lost at sea shortly
after reaching the
age of forty years.
Captain Cranton now rests in an unknown place on the sea bottom somewhere south of Cape Breton. Until recently he has no headstone to mark his years of achievement. Proven written records of his activities have not been found. Two great fires in St. Johns, Newfoundland, may have destroyed any records there.
He and Ann had five daughters and one son, Robert (Jr.) who is buried in the cemetery in Margaree Centre. Robert Jr. wed Catherine Rice, who had 14 children, including 5 five boys who lived to adulthood and assured that the Captain’s name is spreading across our continent. Hundreds of us owe our lives to him.
Cranton Family Society members, at the 2010 Annual General meeting, voted to have a monument to the Captain placed in Margaree Centre where his son and so many of his descendants are interred.
With this in mind the Cranton Family Society executive committee selected a design and a monument to Captain Robert Cranton was erected in the graveyard in Margaree Centre and dedicated by Dr. James St.Clair at the Society's 2011 annual general meeting on Aug. 27th. The monument stands more than four feet high.