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Ryerson Coat of Arms

Our Earliest Beginnings - In the introduction to the 1916 Ryerson Genealogy, the author suggested that the earliest origin of the family was in Norway and that those sturdy Norsemen in their conquests to the south left representatives who eventually settled in Holland. When one discovers the large numbers of Reijerse and Reijersen descendants still living in Norway today, it is easy to agree with him. Many of these contemporary cousins even carry the familiar given names of Reijer, Martin and Joris.

The direct links below will connect you to the three leading sources for research of this family. Finding them all together here in one place will greatly facilitate your search. Click on the green titles. Good luck.

Albert Winslow Ryerson

The RYERSON Genealogy by Albert Winslow Ryerson, 1916. An immense volume of info gathered during the authors long distance sales trips all across the US and Canada, underwritten by Edw. L. Ryerson, son of Jos.T.Ryerson of the Chicago Iron and Steel works.

Louis Johnes Ryerson

The Genealogy of the RYERSON Family in America by Louis Johnes Ryerson, 1902. Focusses on NY/NJ families, many who settled around Pequannack and the Pompton area.

Phyllis Ryerse and Thomas Ryerson

The RYERSE-RYERSON Family 1574-1994 by Phyllis A. Ryerse and Thomas A. Ryerson. Much early NY/NJ history of interest but also the descendants who settled in Norfolk Co., Ontario, Canada after the Revolutionary War.

Other recommended sources for Ryerse-Ryerson family information can be found in a rare old handwritten manuscript – “Early Settlements and Settlers of Pompton, Pequannock and Pompton Plains” by Rev. Garret Conover Schenck. The original is held in the archives of the New Jersey Historical Society in Newark, NJ. The genealogy section covers many families of the area including the Ryersons.

■ History of Paterson, N.J. by William Nelson has a section on the Wagaraw and the Goffle and a chapter on the Ryerson family.
History of Paterson and its Environs by William Nelson has a Ryerson section.
American Families of Historic Lineage Vol.2 – limited Long Island Edition – only 50 copies issued by Wm.S. Pelletreau, A.M., a member of the New York Historical Society.
Early Settlers of Kings County – Teunis G. Bergen covers many branches of our family.
Preakness and the Preakness Refomed Church – George Warne Labaw

It is highly recommended that you join the Ryerse-Ryerson Family Association – free on Facebook where you will find nearly 600 members carrying on very interesting and helpful discussions about this family. On that sure to click on ‘Files’ to access 38 issues (13 years worth) of the PORT RYERSE JOURNAL, an amazing collection of fascinating stories and information about this family.... available no where else! Includes ‘Ryersons on the Titanic.’ OR click on the Port Ryerse Journal tab at the top to see the whole collection.

Click On the "Port Ryerse Journal" link at the top of the page and find the newly added section on Amsterdam!

Phyllis Ryerse and Thomas Ryerson

Three Part Shipwreck Series

Three Part Shipwreck Series


Rich Men Poor Men

Rich Men Poor Men

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When Titanic sailed on her maiden voyage she carried two cousins. One was among the richest men on board and the other a dining steward in Second Class. These Ryerson cousins had never met and neither knew of the other on board. As the ship went down, Steward William Ryerson made it into lifeboat 9, rowing passengers away from the sinking ship. Arthur L. Ryerson placed his family into boat 4 hanging at the ship’s side, then stepped back to his death in the cold, icy waters of the Atlantic. His family had been making a hurried return to the USA after the death of a son in an automobile accident. This tragic tale is told by Phyllis Ryerse, a relative of both men, using many of their own words to tell the story. Those interested in the Titanic will find this a great addition to their library.


Ryersons on the Lusitania

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Like the Ryerson family on the TITANIC, rushing home from Paris for the funeral of their oldest son, the Ryerson family on the LUSITANIA was rushing to Europe at the news of the death of one son killed in action and the wounding of another on the Killing Fields of Flanders.
An iceberg sank the TITANIC
A torpedo took down the LUSITANIA
This is that heart-breaking story – much of it in their own words.

The Tragic Sinking of the Ercolano

Tragic Sinking of the Ercolano

The Tragic Sinking of the Erclando Paperback $14.95

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This book is the third of a three part shipwreck series. The first, Rich Men Poor Men, chronicled the fate of the Ryerson family on the Titanic. The second tells the story of the Ryersons who sailed on the Lusitania's final, fatal voyage.
The earliest in this trilogy of family sea disasters and perhaps the saddest of them all occurred in April of 1854 when the Italian passenger steamer, the Ercolano, heading from Genoa, Italy to Marseille, France was literally sliced in half by the brand new ironclad steamship Sicilia. Our cousin and her two little boys went from sleep to death that stormy midnight when their cabin took the direct hit. This is the story of that horrifying collision, of the passenger’s struggles, the trial and the final verdict of criminal negligence.

144 pages- illustrated generously with family photos and Ercolano related items.

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