The Raisley Name
What kind of name is Raisley, anyhow? Well, I guess you could say it's a
misspelled name. ;-) Originally, it was spelled Rösli, and dates back to the
1500's and before in Switzerland. The Rösli families lived on Eschenberg, a
small mountain just south of Winterthur, which is north-east of Zürich. Research
I've done in the States and in Switzerland indicates that the Röslis lived for
about two hundred years on that mountain, until dispersing in the early 1700's.
While there are still quite a few Röslis living in and around Winterthur
(including some wonderful people who I have visited several times), my ancestors
moved away from Switzerland, to the Pfalz area of Germany for a short time, and
then sailed from Rotterdam (the Netherlands), to Cowes in England, landing at
Philadelphia harbor in 1739. Hans Conrad Rösli arrived with his son, and settled
near Easton, Pennsylvania, where variations of the Rösli name are fairly common.
Did I say variations? There are so many variations, or derivations, of the
Rösli name, it's hard to list them all. Obviously, Raisley, along with Rasely,
Rasley, Raesly, Racely, Raceley, Roesly, Roesli and more! My ancestor Henry
Rasley left Easton (Stone Church, actually) for Butler, Pennsylvania in 1865,
and that is where my dad was born (quite a few years later, obviously).
As I mentioned above, I have had the good luck of traveling to Switzerland a
number of times, to do research in Winterthur and Zürich, visit Eschenberg,
Kyburg castle and much more. We have had Roesli reunions at the Roesli
restaurant in Seen, where I photographed a painted ceramic tile with the Roesli coat of
arms (a crude representation of which is pictured below), and just thoroughly
enjoyed my time there.
If anyone is interested in specifics concerning the Raisley/Roesli families,
including genealogy files in Family Tree Maker, please email me.