Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Progress on The Maps, With A Little Help From My Friend

      First I would like to thank Dara at Blackraven Genealogy for her help in determining what the flora my Gunn family seemed to live among in the nineteenth century might have been. Dara shared with me a link for this wonderful page--  OSI Characteristic Sheet which suggests the Gunns lived in an orchard.  She also shared a site called, Geohive-Spatial data made easy, a collection of old and new maps which is far superior in ease of use to Ask About Ireland or Find My Past.  You need only type in a townland and the viewer goes straight to that place, no hunting around the map. Once there I selected Gallery from the toolbar at the top of the page, scrolled down to, "Irish Townland and Historical Map Viewer".  I chose the 6 inch black and white historical map, typed in Ballygolouge or Ballygowloge, it recognized both, and in seconds it was in front of me. It even asked if I would like it to zoom in for me...why, yes please.  I enlarged the image as much as the site allowed, then took a screenshot which I pasted into my paint program.

     Next stop was the photo editing site BeFunky where I can resize images using "lock aspect ratio" which allows me to enlarge without fuzziness.  This is the result--

Lot 1 in Ballygolouge County Kerry
     I was amazed!  This image is much clearer than any of the other maps I looked at.  I can even see a pine tree or two in the image now.  There was indeed a forested area at the top of the lot! 

     I enjoyed looking at Goldengarden on the site also, though I'm still not sure exactly where my 3rd great-grandfather Cornelius Ryan lived in the townland.  I never realized from the other maps I've viewed over the years that Goldengarden sits on the banks of the Multeen River.  As does Alleen where the family also lived for a time.

     Thank you again Dara, I am having so much fun with these sites...  

Valuation Maps, Which Are Slightly Confusing Me

      I recently purchased a month's subscription to Find My Past specifically because I read somewhere that they had the best maps of Griffith's Valuation.  I'm not sure I would agree.  Their maps might be the most contemporary, but I've found the condition of some to be so bad they were nearly useless.  I had much better luck at Ask About Ireland.  Even finding places was easier; if I moved the slider to "modern map" I could clearly see the larger towns that I knew my ancestor's tiny townland was near.  That made it so much easier to locate the smaller townland once I had zoomed in enough to be able to read it's name.  I also noticed Ask About  had five different maps for Ballygolouge, (also Ballygowloge), in County Kerry, home of my 3rd great-grandmother Mary Gunn.

ValuatiBallygowlogeon for 

     I found Mary's father John Gunn in a search at the Family Search site, the spelling of the name was a bit off, Guinn, though the book above has it Ginna, but I'm fairly confident it's him.  There is also a John Senior who may well be his father!  The search engine at Ask About is very particular however and none of the spellings I tried for his name would bring him up.  I finally used the name of his neighbor Ellen Stack to search at that site.  Reading through his entry from the valuation I saw he was at number one which was divided into a, b, and c.  Lessors were John Jr. at a, John Sr. at b, along with Timothy Relihan at c.  I also saw they had no land which surprised me.  Also at number 1 was Gabriel Thorpe M.D.  He had no house, only land, a bit over two acres.  There was a fever hospital operated by Listowel Poor Law Union listed in the townland also, but it was at number 9 so not near them...or so I thought.  Once I looked at the map I could see lot number one was directly across from the hospital, not exactly prime real estate.  I wondered if they worked at the hospital?  Take a look at the map below, number one is the triangular shaped lot with something, I don't know what, drawn all over it.  

Lot number 1 with fever hospital directly beneath it

     I scoured the net for an explanation of symbols used in making the maps but I couldn't find a site that would enlighten me.  It almost looks like trees?  Did they live in a forest?  I don't think so.  Another look at the map near the top of the triangle shows some irregular groups of what appear to be trees or bushes while the symbols in the Gunn lot are in perfect rows, evenly spaced.  I'd love to know what that represents, some sort of crop I would think.  Maybe their job was to tend that crop?  I don't know who Timothy Relihan was, he hasn't appeared in any research into this family. 

     I also found it a bit odd that the a,b, and c noting where each person lived were grouped so closely, though if one didn't have a garden I don't suppose that would matter.  Perhaps they were caretakers of whatever was growing there.

     Next, looking for my 3rd great-grandfather Cornelius Ryan's lot in Goldengarden, Tipperary left me totally frustrated.  The valuation itself, and the various books generated by it, place him at lot 20.  But not a single map shows a lot 20 located within Goldengarden.  I'm at a loss as to why that is.  Goldengarden is a very irregularly shaped townland, wide at the top and narrowing halfway to the bottom where in the right corner is lot 12. (See below) That is as high as the numbers go.  The parallel lines running diagonally near the top of the townland is a railroad which the valuation field book places at lot 21, near Cornelius at 20 I would think?  Yet the map shows the railroad being on lot 13, not 21, and far from lot 12 at the opposite tip of the townland.  Something is not right here!  I really need to go to Ireland and figure this out.

Goldengarden, Tipperary

Connor Ryan is barely visible at lot 20 with the Railway at 21

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

From Whence The Lannes in William Lannes McGarr?

Jean Lannes

     For quite awhile, ever since I found him actually, I've been curious as to why William McGarr from County Wicklow, Ireland was blessed with the middle name of Lannes.  It wasn't his mother's maiden name, she was Mary Doyle.  It wasn't a name I'd ever heard before.  It certainly didn't sound Irish; not to mention very few Irish persons even had middle names in 1836, the year of William's birth.

     Today I typed "Lannes" into my Google search engine.  What came up was page after page of a Frenchman by the name of Jean Lannes, aka the 1st Duc de Montebello, one of Napolean's generals.  Now why would someone in County Wicklow name their son after a French general?  From my reading of Irish history, I recalled the French offering assistance during the Rising of 1798, perhaps that was it?  Indeed, Napoleon did stage the  ExpĂ©dition d'Irlande to aid the United Irishmen in their rebellion against England. Furthermore, a certain Madame Junot wrote, "only those who knew Lannes can form a just idea of the hatred he bore England...".  That would do it.

     The naming choices in this family get even more interesting.  When William Lannes himself became a father, the name he chose for his son was Robert Emmett McGarr, as in the great Irish patriot Robert Emmett who led a rebellion against England in 1803 for which he was executed.  William's other son was named William Marion McGarr.  That one took some searching and I'm not positive I'm right about the origin of this one.  A search for Marion came up with many unrelated hits.  When I added the search term "Irish hero" however, I found numerous articles about a soldier in America, among them, one titled, "Irishmen in General Washington's Army", and we all know who General Washington's foe was.

     This individual the articles referred to was Francis Marion, born in South Carolina and of Irish heritage.  He was credited with being
the father of guerrilla warfare, and with being the source of many headaches for the English Army in America during the revolution.  Do I see a pattern here or am I stretching it?  It looks to me like I have a family of rebels, God bless them.
Francis Marion


Monday, January 13, 2020

This Took Me Most Of The Day/The Story Of Margaret Steine And Thomas O'Hora


     This past week I've been busy getting the information I've collected on the extended family of my 3rd great-grandfather James O'Hora, who was born at Ricketstown, County Carlow, into my online tree. James and his brothers came to America during the famine, settling in Auburn, New York with James later moving on to Manchester, New York.  Things were going fine until I began entering data for his brother Michael and Michael's wife Margaret Welsh, who remained in Auburn.  In my old PAF, which was the genealogy software Family Search used to offer, I had Michael's son Henry O'Hora (1872-1909) married to Margaret Steine with seven female children.  But all the trees on Ancestry had Margaret married to Thomas O'Hora, with the girls being his daughters???  And there was a census record, 1910, to back this up.

    However, I had baptismal records from Holy Family in Auburn copied by a cousin which named Henry and Margaret Steine as the parents of the seven girls.  Since I didn't compile the list of baptisms myself, I wondered if perhaps my cousin had made a mistake in copying them.  But all seven?  Also, there were two Auburn censuses, 1900 and 1905 showing Henry and Margaret O'Hora as the girl's parents.  Then too, I had the index on Cayuga County GenWeb showing the marriage of Margaret Steine to Henry O'Hora at St. Mary's in Auburn in 1892.  Luckily, unlike most of the numerous O'Horas in Auburn, Margaret and Henry had chosen some unique names for their girls, among them were a Gertrude, an Agnes, and a Josephine.  The census records ALL showed the correct names and correct ages for the girls--but with two different fathers with the same surname.  And, Thomas was enumerated with his parents in 1900 while the oldest daughter of Margaret's was born in 1893, Thomas couldn't be their father could he?

     Something was really off here.  I spent an hour, (at least), looking for other census records and hints on Ancestry but nothing got any clearer. I then began reading through the notes in the PAF file to see what might turn up.  I hadn't done anything with this branch in years and could easily have forgotten something.  I studied Henry first and saw that I had noted a city directory of Auburn which gave his brother Thomas' address as the same as Henry and Margaret's.  Could it be...

     A theory began forming in my head, if Thomas and Margaret were already living together at the time of Henry's death perhaps they had married?  I turned to the New York Marriage Index but couldn't find an entry for the two.  Darn, a perfectly good theory debunked.  But!  I kept at it and found this, a Margaret "Stine" had married Thomas "P. Ohora" on 30 September 1909, in Auburn!  The search engine must have been temperamental today and refused the surnames Steine and O'Hora even though I did not check the "exact" box.  There it was in black and white; fifty-five days after Henry's death his widow Margaret had married his brother Thomas.  Which brings up a whole new set of questions, but I'm NOT going there.

     Margaret's marriage to Thomas lasted a little less than nine months.  On the afternoon of June 18, 1910 an explosion rocked the Auburn quarry where Thomas was employed.  With nearly every bone in his body broken, he lingered until the next day leaving Margaret a widow once again.

     So what did I learn from this?  Don't believe the trees on Ancestry until what they contain has been proven, they all claimed Thomas was the father of Margaret's seven daughters, (I said we're not going there).  Secondly, don't doubt myself, or cousin Rita's copying skills, until the research is done, (I admit I started changing parents on the girls before I came to my senses and looked harder at the question; that being another reason it took so long to accomplish this.  Also, read those old notes!  If you're like me you forget things.  Besides, clues that made little or no sense when you first found them may be clear now.  Lastly, census takers were not always diligent in their duties and those being enumerated were sometimes less than forthcoming.  The relationships and ages in the census could be quite inaccurate.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Fabric Diary Years 1921-1954

Inez and baby sister Gladys 1914
     A few years ago I was contacted by a gentleman who had purchased a diary once owned by Inez Worden.   I don't know how to begin figuring out what my relationship to Inez is.  My family tree on Ancestry says she is my second cousin twice removed, but I think we are also what I would call double cousins.  My third-great-grandfather Paul Worden is Inez's grandfather and another of my third-great-grandfathers, James Warner, is Inez's great-grandfather.

     This diary isn't a typical one, rather it's a record of fabrics which I assume were used by Inez in making garments for herself and family members.  The new owner didn't buy the diary because Inez had owned it, he was interested in the fabrics but then he grew curious about Inez and in searching the net for her came across my blog.  The gentleman generously offered to photograph the pages for me and I have to say he outdid himself.  Every single page is photographed and he took the time to do many closeups of the swatches.  He sent me 91 attachments! I can't imagine how long this took him, but needless to say I'm very grateful.

Inez's lacy graduation dress
     As I was doing some organizing in my computer files today I came across those images again.  There isn't much in the way of narration in this diary, but most of the swatches are labeled as to what they were used to construct.  Many were aprons for Inez, her mother and her two younger sisters, along with dresses and skirts, even coats and hats.  In spite of a lack of narration, the diary does tell a story of sorts.  For instance, from the page above I see the fabric Inez wore on her high school graduation day in 1925.  The detailed notes she made indicate two years later she dyed the dress yellow.  I don't know what the 1945 date signifies.

Blue guitar playing dress
     Inez and her sister Gladys, who died tragically at the age of twenty-two after an operation, were members of a band called the Hawaiian Serenaders.  Inez played guitar in the group, and here we see her, "guitar playing dress", and the pink fabric from which she fashioned a lei.

     Below is a sample of the fabric Inez used to make a shirt for her "Pa"

A shirt for Pa

     There are forty one pages filled with swatches; it's interesting seeing the sort of fabrics that were used in the 1930's and early 1950's.  In many instances, Inez went back years later to make a note as to what became of the item made from the swatch, like, "gave to Mother", or, "donated to clothing relief".   Inez lived until 2001, passing away at the age of 96.  Surprisingly, I never met her even though we lived in the same small village.  I'm  willing to bet that over the years our paths crossed while shopping or doing our banking and I would recognize her face, but she was never pointed out to me.  Of the three Worden sisters, none had children so the line has died out, but a wee bit of Inez lives on in this diary.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

One More War Of 1812 Veteran


     No, this is not turning into a War of 1812 blog, but today was one of those days when I found something completely unexpected so I must blog about it.  Discovering that so many of my ancestors fought in 1812 made me wonder about the Galloway family on my mother's side.  Nearly all the fourth-great-grandfathers on my father's side were in Ireland in 1812, so the soldiers of that era in US military history are necessarily her line.  The grandfather in question is George Galloway.  He is the earliest Galloway I've been able to prove and I know precious little about him.  Most of his information was from the 1850 census of Phelps, New York in which he gave his birth date as 1775 and the place as Massachusetts.

     The first census George appeared in was the 1800 in Vermont with his wife Armina and firstborn son Milo, I'm confident it's my George because Milo claimed birth in Vermont in later census records.  The 1810 census showed the Galloway's living in Brownville, New York in Jefferson County near the Canadian border.  I'm sure I have the right family here, because George's son Russell, in the 1855 New York State census of Arcadia, gave his birth place as Jefferson County, New York in the year 1807.  By 1820 the Galloway's had moved further south to Lyons, New York. They were actually in Wayne County, (then part of Ontario County), in 1819 when George had a letter waiting at the Lyons, NY post office there.  George doesn't appear in the 1830 census though his grown sons do.  He was still in Lyons in March of 1828 when he witnessed the will of his neighbor Caleb Tibbits so it's doubtful he left the area.

       The Newark, NY post office in the town of Arcadia published notice of an unclaimed letter for George in 1837, and the 1840 census places him there in Arcadia where his son Milo was residing.  George's son Russell was in Phelps, NY in 1850 and so were George and Armina although in neither case did they live with their sons.  George died between 1850 and 1855.   That was the full extent of my knowledge of George's life.  I've been having fairly good luck with 1812 ancestors so I thought I'd give George a try. 

     My first search in Ancestry military records brought up a payroll abstract dated September of 1812 from the New York State Militia for a Private George "Galoway", serving in the 76th under Col. Gersham Tuttle; in service at Sackett's Harbor.  Then another abstract, this one dated
August of 1814, still a member of the 76th.  After quite a bit of searching, I discovered the 76th was associated with Jefferson County, New York, Grandfather's place of residence!  What's more, he was the only George Galloway in the area.  The 1810 census shows several other George Galloway's, but two are way down by New York City and one is in Dutchess County.

     This was looking promising, it appeared Grandfather served through the entire war, or most of it at any rate, it ended just six months after the date on that last payroll abstract. What would have made him serve that long?  This was not a popular war, many men never enlisted at all.  The reason, as it so often is, was probably money.  This notice appeared in a Jefferson County, New York newspaper:
Sept. 28, 1810   Newspaper--American Citizen
By order of Hon. Moss Kent, judge for this county of Jefferson.  Notice is hereby given to all the creditors of George Galloway, of the town of Brownville, in the county of Jefferson, an insolvent debtor, that they shew cause, if any they have, before said judge, at his office in the town of LeRay, in the said county of Jefferson, on the first day of November next, why an assignment of the said insolvent's estate should not be made, and he be discharged pursuant to the acts on such case made and provided.  Dated Aug. 31st, 1810.
     George was up to his neck in debt in mid 1810.  During that era one could be thrown into debtor's prison for being unable to pay one's bills.  That line in the news article about being discharged makes me wonder if he had been incarcerated?  Hopefully it was his debts being discharged and not George.  Either way, the militia could have looked like a way to earn some cash.  It may even have erased his debt; neighboring Vermont State forgave minor debtors in exchange for enlisting in order to encourage service in their state militia.  
     Given that my George Galloway was the only one in Jefferson County, I do think think the military records are his.  Since he survived the war George wouldn't be found in the pension applications.  Prior to 1871 those were reserved for disabled soldiers and widows of soldiers killed in the service.  Soldier's Compiled Service Records for the War of 1812 are not yet online though an index can be found at Ancestry.  Here's hoping NARA decides to digitize those files soon.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

The Privates Thomas Garner--Father And Son

     After writing about my fourth-great-grandfather Private Thomas Garner Jr. who fought in the war of 1812, I found myself curious about his father, Private Thomas Garner Sr.  Both men were soldiers fighting England, although their wars were thirty-eight years apart.  The family lived on the island of Martha's Vineyard in the town of Tisbury.  Thomas Jr. was born there but I'm not at all sure where Thomas Sr. was born.  It was probably somewhere in Massachusetts, but I've found no documentation.  I did have the good fortune to come across a book called, "The History of Martha's Vineyard, Dukes County, Massachusetts", by Charles Edwin Banks at Google Books.  Using contemporary letters, rosters and other documents, Dr. Banks put together a detailed picture of  life on Martha's Vineyard at the time of the American Revolution.  I was disappointed to find Thomas Garner in only one spot in the book, a muster roll, but the index contains several entries for a Thomas Gardiner followed by the name Garner in parenthesis. I've seen that before, in the birth record of, "Elizabeth Gardner (Garner)", written just like that. Do they know something I don't?

As I was finishing this post, I found this on Family Search among the index cards to Massachusetts Muster Rolls--they DO know something I don't

     In the book, "Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors in the Revolutionary War",  I found Thomas Garner, a private in the company of Lt. Jeremiah Manter's detachment stationed at Martha's Vineyard 20 November 1776--31 December 1776.  He only served one month and ten days?  Not much of a record, but--if Lt. Manter's company was a detachment, what entity had they been detached from?  The answer was in Dr. Bank's history of the island.  By late 1776 the war wasn't going well for the American side, they needed every man they could get at the front on the mainland so the order went out to disband the island defenses.  On page 354 I found a roster titled, Captain Nathan Smith's Seacoast Company Stationed On Martha's Vineyard 1776, From The 1 Day Of September To The 21 Day Of November.  Thomas "Gardner" was in that roster. 

     After the company was ordered to disband, the island residents were none too happy to be left defenseless.  To appease them, the Massachusetts General Court allowed for a detachment of twenty five men to be selected to remain active on the island.  Thomas Garner/Gardner was among those chosen and went straight from Captain Smith's Company to Lt. Manter's detachment.  It should be noted the original company under Capt. Smith had no soldier named Thomas Garner, it was Thomas Gardner; Thomas was moved from the defunct company to Lt. Manter's it has to be the same Thomas with a slightly different surname.  You would think they could get a name like Garner correct.

     There was still more, I re-checked the book of Massachusetts Soldiers to see if  perhaps there might be more about Thomas Garner under the surname Gardner. This is what I found:
 Gardner, Thomas, Martha's Vineyard (also given as Duxbury). Private Capt. Nathan Smith's co. stationed at Martha's Vineyard for defense of seacoast; also return of men enlisted into the Continental Army from Capt. Nathan Snow's co. (South co in Abington) Col. Mitchel's (3d Plymouth Co) residence Martha's Vineyard...
There were many more companies and officers listed in a small time span, searching their names I deduced Thomas Sr. had joined the 14th Massachusetts in the Continental Army.  Amazingly, also included in the book was the reported date of Thomas' death, 14 September 1777!

     Dr. Banks mentioned in his book that many soldiers from the Vineyard joined regiments of the Continental Army on the mainland after the seacoast defenses were dissolved which explains Thomas being all over Massachusetts until his untimely death. As usual, in finding some answers I now have another pressing question, what happened to Thomas?