McRae-Kerr family history

Everett Jewell With his Great Grandmother’s grave – (Mary McRae)
Photo taken in Nov of 2002
by Ron Petersen

This information in this article was given to me by Everett Jewell. Everett and his Wife, Mary, still live in the Cheboygan area near Long Lake. Everett spent much of his early life on the Island and knows many of  the people mentioned and is a relative to many, including John & Mary McRae, his brother & sister and his parents etc. I put this together the best I could.  It may not be 100% accurate, but I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I did putting it together.

        Ron Petersen


Information on the McRae Family

The family of John and Mary Holin McRae arrived from Woodslee, Ontario Canada to homestead on the north shore of Bois Blanc Island in the year of 1884. They built their home to the right off of McRae Rd., (Now Firetower Rd.) It faced McRae’s Bay on what used to be the North Shore Rd, and is now Boblo Dr. and on the right side of the road. The house stood in what they called the “bite of the bay”. They built and elegant two story home which included a conservatory for growing flowers, a parlor large enough to be called a ballroom and, to my amazement, a darkroom! I have a picture of the McRae home and I have seen the plans for the home drawn by Rob Kerr in a journal that he kept and is now in the possession of one Richard Le Veque’s sons who now lives in Cheboygan. There was a dock and boats in McRae’s Bay. Will McRae and his wife, Kate Kerr resided with John and Mary McRae.

The members of the John McRae family who came to the island were:

John McRae who married Mary Holin – ( Everett Jewell’s Great Grandfather and Grandmother)
Will McRae who married Kate Kerr
Dave McRae who married Francis McRae  - ( Everett’s Grandfather and Grandmother)
Brothers Will and Dave McRae married sisters Kate and Francis Kerr in Canada before arriving on the island)

Will McRae and Kate Kerr had three children:
Mabel McRae who married John Duman
Harry McRae who married Josie Metevier
Frank McRae who married Clara Kennedy

Dave and Francis Kerr had two sets of twin girls:
Lillie Gay McRae who married Allen Jewell  - (Everett’s Mother & Father)
Ella May McRae who married Ernest Jewell     (Everett’s Mother’s twin)
(McRae twins married Jewell brothers).

Minnie Amelia McRae and Winnie Ethyl McRae (twins) died in infancy. One at fifteen days old and one at five months. They are buried in the McRae-Kerr cemetery on the island. (Verified by my grandmother, Lillie Jewell).

Will McRae and Kate Kerr resided on the island for many years. They eventually moved and are buried in Pinehill Cemetery. Mabel McRae Duman, daughter of Will and Kate, is reported to be the first white baby born on the island on March 16 1885.  (I assume there were Indian families at that time).

Mabel McRae Duman and John Duman had three children:
Estella Duman who married Dick LeVeque
Harold Duman who married Della Etcheson
Nina Marie Duman who died in infancy and is buried in the McRae-Kerr cemetery

Harry McRae and Josie Metevier had seven children:
Robert McRae (no information)
Carl McRae who married Marian McCloud
Adelbert McRae (no information)
Lloyd McRae
Willard McRae (no information)
Frank McRae who married Clara Kennedy
Eleanor McRae (no information)

Mabel McRae and John Duman had two children:
Estella Duman married Dick Le Veque
Harold Duman married Della Etcheson
Mabel and John Duman raised Robert McRae, son of Frank and Clara after she died.

McRea Home

John & Mary McRae home on the North Shore of Bois Blanc Island
Sits on the right side of road and faces McRae’s Bay
Right off of The Fire Tower Road
Rob Kerr drew the plans for the house

People outside not known


McRae Family

This Picture was taken around 1906 at the House of John and Mary McRae John & Mary had already passed on John in 1905 and Mary in 1897
John and Mary McRae were Everett’s Great Grandfather and Great Grandmother 

Front Row:  -  Left To Right
Gladys Place
Ella Mae McRae
Lizzie Moody
Lil Haines  -  (Baby Unknown) 

Second Row:
Lillie Jewell  -  (Baby – Fay Jewell)
Kate McRae -   (Baby – Pearl Jewell)
Old Amanda Kerr
Francis Kerr McRae
Millie Place Bible  -  (Baby Unknown) 

Third Row:
Rob Kerr
George Haines
Will McRae
Dave McRae
Andrew Moody 

In Relation to Everett Jewell:
Ella May McRae was his Mom’s twin sister.
Lillie Jewell was his Mom.
Baby Fay was his brother (Died in his 50’s)
Baby Pearl Jewell was his Sister  - (Passed away in Feb 2002 at 97 years old)
Dave McRae was his Grandfather

McRea Wedding

Wedding Party at Kerr Home
High on Bluff To the Left of Firetower Road

Front Row, Left to Right
John Duman
Mabel McRae Duman
John McRae
Mary Margaret McRae
Ella McRae Jewell
Ernest Jewell
Lillie McRae Jewell
Al Jewell
Dave McRae
Francis Kerr McRae

Back Row, Right to Left
Sara Place
Mary Jane Kerr Place
Lou Duman
Jenny Duman
Will Kerr
Amanda Kerr
George Wilkie
Nellie Wilkie
The wedding couple:
Frank McRae
Clara McRae (Kennedy)

Standing, Right to Left
Mary J Kerr
Elizabeth Kerr  (in window)
Lizzie Moody
Josie Metivier McRae
Hattie Van Alstine 

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