Wednesday, March 30, 2016

The Martins of Manchester, NY

1904 map of Manchester, the fan shaped object is the railroad roundhouse
2015 map of Manchester, the roundhouse is still visible a red X marks the Martin lot

     I've spent this week tracing the lives of Anna O'Hora, the sister of my great-grandfather Edward O'Hora, and her husband Patrick Martin.  Anna's birth took place in Auburn, NY and her brother Edward's after the family had moved to the farm in Littleville, NY.  Anna, like all the O'Hora children except one, remained in the area marrying Patrick Martin, in 1880.  The census taken that year shows Anna and Patrick living in Farmington, the next town over, with Patrick engaged in farming. The New York census of 1892 shows the couple and their three children living about ten miles away in Phelps, NY with Patrick still farming.  The really interesting thing about this census is that right below the Martins is listed Andrew Fitzpatrick, laborer. There are in fact, quite a few laborers enumerated below Patrick and Anna, but I doubt they were all working for him.  The 1892 census makes it hard to tell if Andrew is living with the Martins or not, no house or family numbers were recorded in this census nor were relationships given, it was a pretty bare bones tally of New York residents.  Andrew Fitzpatrick is of interest because in 1898, Anna's sister Winifred married a man named Andrew Fitzpatrick who was born in Ontario, NY.  I always wondered how they met, perhaps this was the moment.   

     Various censuses show Patrick Martin following several different trades, from farmer he went to tinsmith in 1900 and finally to hotel keeper in 1915.  The census of 1910 simply says "own income" under occupation.  News articles were more informative.  For example, in 1897 a local paper tells us Patrick was granted a hotel license that year and another license in 1905 (and in the intervening years I assume).  An article from 1907 reads, "Ed Devitt, employed at the ice house, got into a drunken carousal at Patrick Martin's saloon at Manchester on Monday night."  Clearly, at some point Patrick applied for and was granted a liquor license.  An article published in 1893 also clears up the 1892 New York census that showed Patrick in Phelps, surrounded by laborers-- "Patrick Martin will sell at auction at his residence on the Sahler farm, 4 horses, 7 cows ..."  Patrick must have been renting the farm in Phelps from the Sahler's and all those laborers were likely employees of the Sahler family.  It's easy to imagine Anna's sister Winifred visiting her in Phelps and meeting the eligible Andrew Fitzpatrick.

     I next turned to Family Search's New York land records where I found Patrick purchasing property in Manchester village in 1893, right after the farm auction.  The description of the lot in the deed, bordering Lehigh Street, placed it near the Lehigh Valley Railroad yards.  Now I went to Ancestry and it's collection of New York land ownership maps.  There was only one "P. Martin" found, sure enough right next to the yards.  This had to be the spot!  But nothing is ever that easy right?  The map at the top of this page shows Patrick's lot near the roundhouse in the yards, right where I'd expected; so why does every relevant census say he lived on Main Street?  Lehigh Street was right off Main Street, but it wasn't Main Street.  I can't reconcile this discrepancy, try as I might.  There are no purchases of land on Main Street recorded for Patrick.  Since the property was on the corner maybe they just didn't bother to write in another street name?  But on every census?  The newer map shows that today the street is known as Merrick Circle.

     Anna O'Hora Martin died at their home in 1907 from a cerebral hemorrhage and Patrick passed in 1916.  He left his estate to his maiden daughter Mary Honora who soon sold the property.  Patrick's obituary gave more clues as to his business dealings:  

Geneva Daily Times Nov. 13, 1916
Patrick Martin, one of the best known residents of Manchester died at his home in the village Saturday.  Mr. Martin conducted a hotel in the village for several years and retired from business in 1908 when the "drys" carried the day.

     My conclusion from all this is that Patrick tired of farming and purchased the hotel property, financing it by auctioning his farm equipment and livestock.  He supplemented his income while starting the hotel by tinsmithing.   After a time he expanded the business adding a bar until 1908 when Manchester voted to become a dry town.  After that he continued the hotel.  Today a bar called O. Henry's stands on the lot Patrick and Anna owned.  County records online say it was constructed in 1900, seven years after the Martins purchased the property, but perhaps they simply enlarged the building that year, or the original was torn down and a new one built.  Or the transcriber made an error.  I'm still puzzled by the censuses that say the Martins lived on Main Street; I wonder if the dotted lines that lead straight from the middle of the Martin lot towards Main Street on the 1904 map indicate an access road to Main?  Perhaps it was considered an extension of Main Street in 1904?  This will need more work...

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Copied Content!


     This morning I sat down at my desk with a cup of coffee, ready to do a little genealogy.  I haven't looked for my entrepreneurial ancestor Milo Galloway in a long time, so decided to do an internet search to see if anything new about him had been added.  A few hits down in the results, an unfamiliar website came up and upon opening it my jaw dropped.  There on a "day trading" site I found my blog about Milo titled "Of Land Deals and Canals"!  The entire blog, word for word including the image.  I was aghast to say the least, nowhere on that page was there any credit for my work.  Copying an entire blog is bad enough, but to not even acknowledge the author is even more disturbing.

     I read through the site's policies, and found this:

     The entire contents of the Site are protected by international copyright and trademark laws. The owner of the copyrights and trademarks are ******** its affiliates or other third party licensors. YOU MAY NOT MODIFY, COPY, REPRODUCE, REPUBLISH, UPLOAD, POST, TRANSMIT, OR DISTRIBUTE, IN ANY MANNER, THE MATERIAL ON THE SITE, INCLUDING TEXT...

     Strong words from a company which sees fit to themselves copy, reproduce, republish and post the work of others.  And they are the owners of the copyright to my blog?????  Really??? And all this time I thought the copyright on my blog content belonged to me.  

     I sent the offending company a polite email asking them to remove my work from their site; what happens next remains to be seen.  Looking further at the site I noticed near the top, the word "From" followed by, in small pale blue letters, the words Of Land Deals and Canals -- not my name, not the name of my site The link does take one to my blog page, but is that enough?  How many people will even click on it?  Especially since it just reiterates the title. I didn't even notice it at first and I was looking! 

     I did another Google search, this time using the search terms "copied my blog" and lots of sites full of advice came up.  The US government says that to copy my entire blog, my permission is required. Even if I were given credit on the offender's site, that alone is not sufficient.  Other sites note that this sort of thievery can affect search engine rankings and cause Google to mistake your blog content as the duplicate.  I'm not sure yet how far I want to take this, hopefully the filched content will just be removed.


Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Tuesday's Tip/Naming Patterns Revisited


     I'm sure all of us are familiar with the traditional Irish naming pattern and how it can be useful in connecting families. Several weeks ago I came across a short article about a reason why the pattern wasn't always followed; being that babies born or baptized on a saint's feast day sometimes were given the name of that saint.  Especially if the saint in question was popular in the family's locality.  That was a possibility I'd never considered before.  I've also heard over the years that an illegitimate or sickly baby might not have been given the name the pattern would dictate.

     Another possible reason, terrible to contemplate, is the loss of a child.  I couldn't figure out why my great-great-grandmother Anna Ryan White hadn't named a child after her father until her eleventh and last born son.  There were no long spaces between her children where another might have been born, they came like clockwork every two years, it made no sense.  The answer lay in baptism records-- twins!  Only one thrived, Anna had indeed named one of the twins Cornelius for her father, but he did not survive long and appears in no census records.  If I hadn't looked at that baptism register I wouldn't have know that he ever existed.

     These possibilities, (and I'm sure there are others), are useful to keep in mind when attempting to determine if a particular family is really part of the line I'm looking for.  In the future I won't be so quick to discount a possible relationship based on children's names.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Dan McGarr's Farm

                                                    The farm-- Courtesy of Dara at Black Raven Genealogy

     Like many of you I've been enjoying Ancestry's week of free Irish records.  I've found several useful things in the databases, and today I've finally figured out the owners, down through the years, of my Great-Great-Great-Grandfather Daniel McGarr's farm in Ballyraggan County Kildare.  Quite awhile ago I sent to the Valuation Office in Ireland and received a package of copies of the cancelled or revised books begun in the late 1840's by Mr. Griffith's and his valuers.  It contained a list of the various occupiers and owners of Daniel's property.

     Daniel of course is the occupant from the 1850's until his death in 1875.  After that the occupier was Thomas Hughes, Daniel's son in law by virtue of his marriage to Daniel's daughter Sarah McGarr.  Sarah and Thomas had one child, a daughter named Mary in 1873.  Sarah died between that time and 1902 when Thomas married a much younger Margaret Brien with whom he had another daughter in 1903 baptized Mary Margaret.  Thomas himself passed away in 1909.  The next name to appear in the book is that of Margaret Butler followed by a Mrs. Miley in about 1942.  But who was Margaret Butler?  I'm sure Mrs. Miley is the daughter Thomas and Margaret had together in 1903 who married James Miley.  Did she come back and purchase her birthplace?  Could it be that Margaret Butler was the former Mrs. Hughes?  As I mentioned, Margaret was younger that Thomas Hughes, she could well have remarried.

     I did a search at Ancestry and found a possible marriage in the Civil Registration index between Margaret Brien and Martin Butler in 1912 but it was pretty bare bones.  I then tried the Civil Registration at Irish and found the 1912 marriage of Martin Butler and Margaret Hughes.  I'm betting the records have both of Margaret's surnames listed, and each site chose to use a different one.  This is real proof I have the right marriage.

     I also found in the revision book, stamped in purple ink next to Margaret Butler's name, the letters LAP and the name of the "lessor" had been crossed out and "in fee" written in.  This meant Mrs. Butler was no longer leasing the property, but had purchased it by means of Land Act Purchase assistance.  The Land Commission, created in 1881, had begun this program to help occupiers buy the land they had heretofore leased.  It's my understanding the revised books have been scanned and are ready to go online, I'm not sure what the hold up is but we were promised these a very long time ago; Northern Ireland's are already up and running at the PRONI site.

     Another annoying matter still remains however, and that is my complete inability to find any reference to the death of Sarah McGarr Hughes.  Or her and Thomas' daughter Mary born in 1873.  I think Mary may have died before 1903 when Thomas and his new wife Margaret Brien became the parents of Mary Margaret Hughes.  Surely Thomas wouldn't have named his second daughter Mary if the first was still living...would he?  This Civil Registration is the closest I've ever found for the first Mary:

Name     Mary Hughes
Event Type     Death
Event Date     Jan - Mar 1946

Event Place     Baltinglass, Ireland
Birth year       (estimated) 1872
Age       74
Registration Quarter and Year  Jan - Mar 1946

     The birth year is right, she was born in April so wouldn't have turned 75 yet, but I have no way of knowing if it's truly her. It's possible she married before the second Mary was born and her death is under her husband's name. I would be a little sad if the record does refer to the first Mary--with no husband and the farm her grandfather Daniel worked going to Thomas' second daughter who wasn't even a McGarr.  I'd love to know what did become of the first Mary Hughes, daughter of Sarah McGarr, not to mention Sarah's two brothers Richard and John.  There are still McGarr mysteries to be solved...