[raws, ros]
Ross, Alexander, 1783-1856, Canadian fur trader and pioneer, b. Scotland. He went to Canada in 1805, taught school in Upper Canada, and in 1810 left for Oregon as a clerk in John Jacob Astor's Pacific Fur Company. In the founding (1811) of Astoria, Ross played a part. When that fur-trading post was sold (1813) to the North West Company, he entered their employ and was a member of the expedition that established (1818) Fort Nez Percé (also called Fort Walla Walla); he was in charge of this post until 1823, two years after the amalgamation (1821) of the North West Company with Hudson's Bay Company. His account of these years on the Pacific slope is related in his Adventures of the First Settlers on the Oregon or Columbia River (1849, new ed. 1923) and The Fur-Hunters of the Far West (1855, new ed. 1956). He was head of an expedition (1823-24) in the Snake River country. In 1825 Ross settled in the Red River district; in Assiniboia he was sheriff and a member of the council. His Red River Settlement was published in 1856.
Ross, Barney David, 1909-67, American boxer, b. New York City as Dov-Ber Rasofsky; he was also known as Beryl David Rasofsky and Barnet David Rasofsky. After an amateur career, Ross turned professional in 1929 and lost only four decisions in 82 fights. He won the world lightweight championship in 1933 but relinquished it in 1935 when he failed to make the weight. In three bouts with Jimmy McLarnin, he gained the world welterweight crown in 1934, lost it the same year, and regained it in 1935. Ross lost the title to Henry Armstrong in 1938. During World War II, in action in Guadalcanal in 1942, Ross won the Silver Star for gallantry in action for attempting to save three wounded fellow marines. He was a victim of shell shock, minor shrapnel wounds, and malaria. Drugs administered to him caused addiction, and he entered a narcotics sanitarium in Lexington, Ky., where he was cured.

See his autobiography (with M. Abramson, 1957); biography by D. Century (2006).

Ross, Betsy, 1752-1836, American seamstress, b. Philadelphia. Her full name was Elizabeth Griscom Ross. She is known to have made flags during the American Revolution, although the long-accepted story that she designed and made the first American national flag (the Stars and Stripes) is generally discredited.

See R. Thompson, The Last of Philadelphia's Free Quakers (1972).

Ross, Edward Alsworth, 1866-1951, American sociologist, b. Virden, Ill., Ph.D. Johns Hopkins, 1891. He taught economics (1893-1900) at Stanford Univ., from which he was ousted in a controversy over academic freedom. He had opposed the use of migrant Chinese labor in the building of the railroads, a political position that disturbed the Stanfords, who were involved in the building of the Union Pacific RR. From 1906 to 1937 he was professor of sociology at the Univ. of Wisconsin. He analyzed collective behavior and social control and wrote voluminously on population and other problems. His chief works are Social Control (1901, new ed. 1969) and Principles of Sociology (1921).

See his autobiography, Seventy Years of It (1937); study by J. Weinberg (1972).

Ross, George, 1730-79, political leader in the American Revolution, signer of the Declaration of Independence, b. New Castle, Del. He was a lawyer in Lancaster, Pa., and a member of the colonial assembly (1768-74) before serving as delegate (1774-77) to the Continental Congress.
Ross, Sir George William, 1841-1914, Canadian political leader, b. Ontario. He sat (1872-83) in the House of Commons and then entered the Ontario government as minister of education. He was Liberal prime minister of Ontario from 1899 to 1905. In 1907 he was appointed to the Canadian Senate and in 1910, the year he was knighted, became Liberal leader in the Senate. He was a notable public speaker, and many of his addresses have been published.
Ross, Harold Wallace, 1892-1951, American editor, b. Aspen, Colo. He founded the New Yorker in 1925 and was its influential managing editor until his death. Ross quit school at the age of 14 to work at the Salt Lake City Tribune. During World War I he edited Stars and Stripes in France. From its inception, the New Yorker captured the contemporary scene in features written by such writers as E. B. White, Dorothy Parker, James Thurber, and Wolcott Gibbs, and in cartoons by Peter Arno and Charles Addams.

See T. Kunkel, ed., Letters from the Editor: The New Yorker's Harold Ross (2000); biography by T. Kunkel (1995); J. Thurber, The Years with Ross (repr. 1982).

Ross, Sir James Clark, 1800-1862, British polar explorer and rear admiral. In 1818 he accompanied his uncle, Sir John Ross, in search of the Northwest Passage and commanded the Erebus. He later studied Eskimo life while on several arctic voyages (1819-27) with W. E. Parry. In another expedition (1829-33) with his uncle, he located (1831) in Boothia Peninsula the north magnetic pole (now located in Prince of Wales Island). In command of an expedition (1839-43) to study earth magnetism in Antarctica, Ross discovered Ross Sea, reaching Ross Island and following the Ross Ice Shelf eastward for c.350 mi (560 km). He also discovered Victoria Land and much of North Graham Land. He recorded his experiences in his Voyage of Discovery and Research to Southern and Antarctic Regions (1847). In 1848-49 he made another visit to the Arctic in search for Sir John Franklin.

See E. S. Dodge, The Polar Rosses (1973); A. Gurney, The Race to the White Continent (2000).

Ross, Sir John, 1777-1856, British arctic explorer and rear admiral. In 1818 he went in search of the Northwest Passage but turned back after exploring Baffin Bay. Financed by Sir Felix Booth, he commanded a second search expedition (1829-33), in the course of which he discovered Boothia Peninsula, the Gulf of Boothia, and King William Island and explored Smith, Jones, and Lancaster sounds. Ross was knighted in 1833. His last trip to the Arctic was made in 1850-51, when he went to the Lancaster Sound region to search for Sir John Franklin. He wrote two books describing his quest for the Northwest Passage.

See E. S. Dodge, The Polar Rosses (1973).

Ross, John, whose name in Cherokee is Kooweskoowe, 1790-1866, Native American chief, b. near Lookout Mt., Tenn., of Scottish and Cherokee parents. He was educated at Kingston, Tenn., and in the War of 1812 served under Andrew Jackson against the Creeks. Elected principal chief of the eastern Cherokee in 1828, Ross struggled valiantly to hold the ancestral lands of his people but was unable to withstand the constant pressure of the state of Georgia for removal. In a treaty (1835) of questionable validity, a small minority of the Cherokee ceded the lands and moved west. Ross and the majority refused to acknowledge the cession, but resistance was unsuccessful, and in 1838-39 he led them on the long, hard journey to present-day Oklahoma. Thousands died on the trip, known in Native American lore as the "trail of tears." From 1839 until his death Ross was chief of the united Cherokee nation (the western Cherokee had migrated at the beginning of the century). He counseled neutrality in the U.S. Civil War, but the Cherokee ultimately supported the Confederacy.

See biography by G. E. Moulton (1986).

Ross, Robert, 1766-1814, British general. He served against the French in the Netherlands, in Egypt, and in the Peninsular War. In the War of 1812 he defeated a U.S. force at Bladensburg, and on the same day (Aug. 24, 1814) he surprised and captured Washington, burning all the public buildings. Spurred by victory, Ross decided to attempt the capture of Baltimore. On Sept. 12, in a thick wood near North Point, his army encountered the American militia. A skirmish ensued, and Ross was killed.
Ross, Sir Ronald, 1857-1932, English physician, b. Almora, India. He studied malaria in India as a member (1881-99) of the Indian Medical Service, was professor of tropical medicine at University College, Liverpool, from 1902, and directed the Ross Institute and Hospital for Tropical Diseases, London, from 1926. In 1898 he demonstrated the malarial parasite (Plasmodium) in the stomach of the Anopheles mosquito; in W Africa he discovered the mosquito that transmits African fever. He received the 1902 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his work on malaria and was knighted in 1911. He also published poems, novels, and mathematical studies.

See his memoirs (1923); J. Rowland, The Mosquito Man (1958).

Macdonald, Ross, pseud. of Kenneth Millar, 1915-83, American novelist, b. Los Gatos, Calif. He was educated in Canada and at the Univ. of Michigan. Macdonald's mystery novels center on the tough but compassionate private detective, Lew Archer. They often deal with the effect of the past on present behavior, the crimes parents commit against their children, and the nature of evil. His novels include The Galton Case (1959), The Zebra-Striped Hearse (1962), The Chill (1964), The Good-bye Look (1969), and The Lonely Silver Rain (1985).

See biographies by M. J. Bruccoli (1984) and T. Nolan (1998).

His wife, Margaret Millar, 1915-94, b. Kitchener, Ont., Canada, was a mystery writer. Her works include The Invisible Worm (1941), The Murder of Miranda (1979), and Banshee (1983).

Cox, Ross, 1793-1853, American fur trader. He joined John Jacob Astor's Pacific Fur Company in 1811 and went to the Astoria post on the supply ship Beaver. He was active in the trade in the Columbia river valley, entering the employ of the North West Company after Astoria was sold to that firm. His Adventures on the Columbia River (1831) is an entertaining as well as valuable historical source.

Ross is a small incorporated town in Marin County, California, United States, just north of San Francisco. The population was 2,329 at the 2000 census. The town is bordered by Kentfield and Greenbrae to the east, Larkspur to the south and San Anselmo to the north.


Ross is located at (37.962673, -122.558090).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 1.6 square miles (4.1 km²), all of it land.


As of the census of 2000, there were 2,329 people, 761 households, and 626 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,461.5 people per square mile (565.6/km²). There were 805 housing units at an average density of 505.2/sq mi (195.5/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 96.09% White, 0.13% African American, 0.09% Native American, 1.42% Asian, 0.17% Pacific Islander, 0.39% from other races, and 1.72% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.32% of the population.

There were 761 households out of which 44.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 72.0% were married couples living together, 7.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 17.7% were non-families. 12.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.94 and the average family size was 3.21.

In the town the population was spread out with 30.2% under the age of 18, 3.4% from 18 to 24, 21.3% from 25 to 44, 32.8% from 45 to 64, and 12.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females there were 94.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.0 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $102,015, and the median income for a family was $102,593. Males had a median income of $75,784 versus $52,083 for females. The per capita income for the town was $51,150. About 5.6% of families and 8.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.2% of those under age 18 and 5.7% of those age 65 or over.

Local Institutions

  • The Ross School, a public (K-8) school in the Ross School District
  • The Branson School , a private high school.
  • The Marin Art and Garden Center , a non-profit group focused on gardening and conservation.
  • Saint Anselm Church , established in 1907
  • Ross Historical Society
  • The Lagunitas Country Club

Notable residents


  • The movie Jack, starring Robin Williams, was filmed in Ross.
  • Residents pick up their mail at the Town Post Office; no mail is delivered to homes.
  • Scenes from the movie "The Godfather" part I were filmed in Ross.
  • The Woody Allen Movie "Take the Money and Run" used the Ross Garage towtruck*


External links

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