Thursday, July 18, 2013

John O'Hora and His Daughters Part 2--Mary

     When the John O'Hora family arrived in America, John needed to find a position to support his wife and daughter.  He found one in Aurelius just outside Auburn on the farm of J C Reed.  John worked there on the farm as a laborer and by 1850 so did his brother James who had arrived in America a few years after John.  I cannot locate John and Catherine in 1855.  In 1860 the census shows Catherine and Mary, now aged 14 along with six siblings living in Aurelius, but no John.  I don't know if this was an oversight by the census taker, I've seen that happen, or if John had taken a job elsewhere.

1850 Census of Aurelius-James on line 7 John on line 10

     John has returned by the time of the 1870 census, if he ever really left, and the family is now living in Auburn's 6th Ward, with John employed at Auburn's stone quarry.  Mary is not with the family. In 1861, at the incredibly young age of 15, she married Thomas Shea, another Irish immigrant about eight years her senior.  The 1865 New York census shows Mary and Thomas along with a daughter Johanna living in Owasco just outside Auburn, right next door to her Uncle James O'Hora, John's brother.

     That marriage surprised me, it was so out of character for the Irish to marry that young in the1860's.  The thought that immediately springs to mind is that Mary must have been in a family way, and she may very well have been, but the baby was evidently lost or died young, it does not appear in any census.  Johanna wasn't born until 1863.  I cannot find an obituary of any sort for a child of Mary and Thomas in 1861 or 62, obviously I need to re-check church records for a baptism or burial.

     Mary bore two more children, Catherine named after her mother Catherine McGarr born in 1866 and John named after her father who was born in 1869.  Tragically, Mary died in 1872, possibly in childbirth.  No obit for her either, and I wish there was since it may have mentioned the trip from Ireland and other details.  Thomas remarried within a year, and with three children, one of whom was 3 years old who could blame him.  He had five more children with his new wife and they lived a quiet life.

     Until 1877 when 65 year old Alvin Goddell was arrested for assault upon 12 year old Hannah, (Johanna), Shea!  The newspaper described it, "He lived alone and enticed her into his residence, detaining her overnight." Hannah was awarded $5,500 in a civil suit, but a week later Alvin skipped town.  He was later apprehended and given an eight year sentence, and his property auctioned  to pay Hannah's suit.  Thomas used about $1,500 of the cash to buy property on Main Street in Auburn.
Shea Building Corner of South and Main, Auburn

     Mary's second daughter Catherine Shea is an ancestor whose descendants I've found a lead on.  She married a man named John Dougherty, this is her obituary:
 Auburn July 7, 1945
     Mrs. Catherine Shea Dougherty, of 4 Aspen Street, widow of John Dougherty, died at her home Saturday noon after a long illness. Mrs. Dougherty was one of the oldest residents of the Ninth Ward. She was a communicant of St. Mary's Church.
     Surviving are four sons: John Dougherty, Philip Dougherty. Charles Dougherty and Thomas Dougherty, all of this city; three daughters, Mrs. Joseph McDonald and Mrs. Frank House of Auburn and Mrs. Earl Parker of Baltimore, N. Y„ and several grandchildren.
     Funeral services will be held at the home, 4 Aspen Street, Wednesday morning at 8:30 o'clock, with services at St.
Mary's Church at 9 o'clock. Burial will be in St. Joseph's Cemetery. Friends have been invited to call at the home after Sunday noon.

     This is a find, if I can contact descendants of these children of Catherine Shea Dougherty, there is a chance I can learn more about this family and maybe even acquire a picture, wouldn't that be special?  The last child, John, fell in with a bad crowd... his McGarr/O'Hora grandmother.  That's right I said grandmother so stay tuned!

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