Taken from an email to Harald Reksten on 16 Oct 2009:
Harald, I'm beginning to be drawn back to the Craven(s) family once again, but this time, in searching for the identity of Sarah, Robert's wife (i.e. Robert Patterson). I have no conclusions at this time, but I'm beginning to see some evidence that could lean that direction. I still have more organizing of data to do to make the analysis easier, but for now, here are some random thoughts concerning this line of thinking.
We know that Robert and Sarah married b/w 1732 and 1738. We also know they had children before 1744. I believe they may have had as many as 3 or 4 of their children by then, certainly Abigail, Mary and Thomas, and quite possibly Sarah, too. This dau Sarah had her first child (Susannah Kincaid) by 1763, by the way. All that to say this... I would be surprised if Robert and Sarah were married after 1735. If that is the case, then Sarah was probably born by 1715-17, perhaps.
We know that the Cravens family was all around the Harrisons, et al in Sussex Co De as well as Salem Co, NJ. Robert Cravens (b 1696) and his sister Margaret both married Harrison siblings. Elizabeth Patterson (Robert's sister) married another Harrison sibling. This older Cravens generation is not as well documented, but many have made attempts over the years and there's just enough info out there to raise certain questions.
There was a trio of Cravens siblings who were orphaned in Salem Co, NJ in the early 1680s, Thomas, Peter, and Ann Cravens. Ann was born 1670, and Thomas was born about 1665-68, and Peter more like 1672-74. Neither of these Cravens brothers are well documented, but Robert (1696) is thought to have come from one of them, perhaps, but that hasn't been proven. I know that Thomas Craven was under the guardianship of an uncle until the late 1680s or so. It would not be unreasonable for him to be the father of Robert 1696. Furthermore, he certainly could have fathered children over a 20 year period, such as our Sarah (1715-18).
The name Peter Craven(s) was passed down for generations among the Peter Craven family. Peter II was born 1712. His descendants are not sure if he was the son of Peter I or of Thomas, however. Peter II moved his family to Augusta Co Va in 1744. Around 1755 or a little later perhaps, he moved his family to Randolph/Guilford Co NC around the Deep River. The Cravens lived around the Quakers in NJ and also in NC. They were Regulators and Loyalists during the Revolution.
Furthermore, during the Revolution, Loyalists from York Co SC were identified as our Pattersons and Blacks, plus Nathaniel Harrison, plus some others, including a whole group of Julians. Peter Julian sr and Jr and many others, were named. Many of these Julians also moved during the Revolution to Randolph/Guilford Co NC near the Cravens. The Julians were also Quakers.
I don't have to remind you that our Robert and Sarah Patterson named one of their sons Peter. I believe he was the second son, after Thomas.
I have thought for years that the move to SC was precipitated by the Blacks (I still believe that to be the case) and that Robert Patterson and Nathaniel Harrison followed because their wives somehow were related to the Blacks. But what about this possibility? Could it be that the wives of Patterson and Harrison were related to the Cravens instead! Robert Black, one of the key members of this Black clan who moved to SC, was married to Majey Cravens, dau of Robert Cravens and Mary Harrison Cravens. Perhap the connection is a Cravens connection. We also know that Robert Cravens Jr and his brother William Cravens speculated in SC and owned land right next to Robert Patterson and Robert Black. These Cravens brothers were brothers to Majey Cravens Black. Was Sarah Patterson their aunt by virtue of being a younger sister of their father Robert Cravens?
Another connection is that Robert Patterson's niece, Esther Harrison (dau of Eliz Patterson and Jeremiah Harrison), married Robert Cravens Jr (mentioned above). They were also first cousins to each other by virtue of the fact that Esther's father (Jeremiah) and Robert Jr's mother (Mary Harrison), were siblings.
Thomas Patterson had multiple things in common (chain bearers together, etc) with William Cravens. Furthermore, Thomas Patterson's oldest grandson was named Joseph Black Patterson, born 1789 in SC. This grandson named a son William Craven Patterson (1813).
One source even has the elder Thomas Craven having several daughters and a son named Nehemiah Cravens. That was a common name passed down thru the Robert Cravens family, also. Rachel was another name I saw in these other Cravens families (from the Peter Cravens line). We know that Nathaniel Harrison's wife was named Rachel.
Just thinking out loud.
Apparently there was a Thomas Craven Sr and a Thomas Craven Jr in Burlington, West New Jersey in 1701.
They were witnesses to a deed involving the Stokes family.
Another source http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=ttg13&id=I28337 leads one to believe that none of the DE and VA Cravens could have come from this Thomas or Peter Cravens... but there must have been a relation as Thomas' uncle was a Smith from Smithtown, NY and the Harrisons descended from the same Smiths.
This source paints an accurate picture of what JH Harrison wrote in Settlers by the Long Grey Trail:
Bottom line is, no one knows for sure where Robert Cravens (m Mary Harrison) came from, but he and his sister both married Harrisons in Sussex Co DE. Most people assume his father was a Richard Cravens.
Bottom line is, I think the Craven(s) family is one we need to keep our eyes on for Sarah's ancestry.