Catholic Records

Esther Lily Crowe: Home Child?

On 28 November 1886, Esther Lily Crowe was baptized a Catholic at St. Isidore, South March. Her sponsors were Noé Pagé and Mary Ann Lahey (daughter of John Lahey and Margaret Jane Killeen). She was 16 years old at the time, and had previously been baptized into the Anglican church as the “lawful child” of William Crowe and Margaret Ann Leith.
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South March (St. Isidore), Register of Baptisms, Marriages, and Burials, 1861-1968,  B. 18 (1886), Esther Lilley Crowe,  image 63 of 663, Ancestry.ca (http://ancestry.ca/: accessed 31 May 2011), Ontario, Canada, Catholic Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1747-1967.

Was she the Esther Crow, age 8, who arrived in Canada on 15 May 1878, as a member of the Quarrier’s Party which left Glasgow on 2 May 1878?

Ann Lahy/Lahey, wife of William Coil/Coyle

On 29 September 1846, William Coil/Coyle, son of Thomas Coil and Ann Wellworth “du comte de Tipperary” (of the county of Tipperary), married Ann Lahy, daughter of John Lahy and Ann Fitzpatrick, also of Tipperary (“du même comte”/of the same county). Witnesses to the marriage were John Doherty (Dogherty/O’Dogherty) and James [Brogan? Bingham?]. Marriage record found in the parish register for Notre Dame Basilica, Ottawa:

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Ottawa; Ottawa (basilique Notre Dame), Register of Baptisms, Marriages, and Burials, 1845-1847, M. 81 (1846), Wm Coil and Ann Lahy, image 98 of 181, Ancestry.ca (http://ancestry.ca/: accessed 3 April 2011), Ontario, Canada, Catholic Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1747-1967.

Given the common surname and the common county of origin, along with their shared settlement in the Bytown area, I wonder if this Ann Lahy was related to my Lahy/Lahey ancestors who emigrated to March township (Carleton Co., Ontario) from Ballymacegan, Lorrha, Co. Tipperary?

Patrick Cavanaugh and Bridget Killeen

Another Killeen couple with surprisingly few marriages amongst their offspring:

Bridget Killeen was one of the daughters (possibly the fourth daughter, and fifth child) of Denis Killeen and Mary Ahearn, and a sister of Hanora (married Michael Donahue), and also of Ellen (married Mathew Daley), of Patrick (married Bridget Galligan), of Margaret Jane (married John Lahey), of John (married Margaret Fahey), and of five other known siblings. She was born at March township about 1827, and died at Maniwaki, Gatineau Co., Québec in 1910.
On 2 May 1854 (Notre Dame, Bytown), Bridget Killeen married Patrick Cavanaugh, son of Christopher Cavanaugh and Jane Malone, and an emigrant from Co. Kildare, Ireland. The couple lived in March township, Carleton Co., Ontario for the next six to eight years, where they had five known children (Mary Jane; Margaret; John Christopher; William; and Anna Esther), before moving to Maniwaki, where they had another three known children (James Patrick; Denis Joseph; and Albert). Patrick Cavanaugh was a blacksmith, as were his sons John, William, and James, according to the 1881 census (Quebec, Ottawa, Egan and Maniwaki, household of Patrick Kavanagh, family no. 15; LAC; click thumbnail to see larger image):
cavanaugh_patrick_killeen_bridget_1881census.jpg

Michael Donahue and Hanora Killeen: 12 Children, 1 Marriage?

Hanora (sometimes Anna or Hanna/Hannah) Killeen was one of the eldest (perhaps the second eldest) daughters of Denis Killeen and Mary Ahearn. She was born in March township in the early 1820s, possibly (as per the 1901 Canadian census return) on 10 May 1821.

Hanora’s older sister Ellen Killeen (born Ireland about 1818) married a “Matthew Daly of Huntley” (born Ireland about 1807) in 1836 (Notre Dame, Bytown/Ottawa). Matthew Daley and Ellen Killeen had a very large family, with their first four children (Peter, Mary, Denis, and John) born in Huntley township (Carleton Co., Ontario/Upper Canada), and their sixth and later children born at Clarendon, Pontiac Co., Québec/Lower Canada. It’s not clear where their fifth child, Bridget, was born (whether at Huntley or at Clarendon), but certainly they were living in Clarendon by 1847. (Some of their sons, including Anthony Daley, later emigrated to the States.)
Hanora Killeen had presumably moved from March township to Clarendon to be with her older sister, for by 1850 she was described as being “domiciled at Clarendon.”

Border Crossings (Daleys): Anthony Daley

Anthony Daley was born at Clarendon, Pontiac Co., Québec in March 1863, and baptized (Ste. Anne, Calumet Island) on 5 April 1863, with Michael Hughes and Elizabeth McCullough serving as godparents. He was the eleventh son and fifteenth child of Matthew Daley and Ellen Killeen.

He emigrated to the US (Michigan or Wisconsin) around 1880, perhaps with several of his brothers, and presumably to work in the lumbering trade. By 1895, he was a resident of Florence County, Wisconsin.
On 2 October 1895, at Norway, Dickinson Co., Michigan, Anthony Daley married Mary O’Donnell, daughter of John O’Donnell and Bridget Kale. From the Michigan Marriages, 1868-1925 database at FamilySearch, here is the civil registration of their (RC, performed by a priest named F.X. Bastien) marriage (click preview to see larger image):
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Anthony Daley and Mary O’Donnell had a family of at least seven children, with their eldest child, a daughter named Donalda,* born in Michigan, and the other children all born in Wisconsin. They seem to have moved from Michigan to Wisconsin, and then back to Michigan.
How many of Anthony Daley’s brothers also emigrated to the States? In the 1910 US federal census for Waucedah, Dickinson, Michigan (sheet no. 2, family no. 22) Anthony (now Andrew) Daly and wife Mary can be found with six children (Denalda, Gerald, Vivien, Wayne, Anthony, and Debbe [listed here as a son, but possibly daughter Kathleen B.?), and with Anthony/Andrew’s widowed brother James, widower of Mary McHugh, listed as a “Retired Farmer.” Brother Dominic Daley may have ended up in Missoula, Montana. And brother Christopher Daley may have also emigrated to Michigan to marry an Ellen. In the 1880 US federal census for the township of Fraser, Bay County, Michigan, three brothers Christopher, Thomas and Patrick Daly, all born Canada and the dates seem to fit, are found working as Laborers in a lumber camp.
*One of my high school teachers (grade 10, homeroom) was a nun named Sister Donalda. I recall thinking at the time (o callow youth!…) that Donalda was sort of a funny name for a female. In retrospect, I remember her as a truly kind person, if sometimes a little bit cranky, and as an excellent history teacher. Viewing the 1900 US federal census return for Anthony Daly and wife Mary, with children Denalda, Gerrald, and Vivian C. (Wisconsin, Brown, Green Bay Ward 6, sheet no. 12, family no. 224) is the second time ever I have come across the name Donalda.

Benjamin Finner and Mary Mantle

Continuing with the theme of English people who emigrated to Canada and joined an Irish parish (a theme I will quickly exhaust, as I only have a handful of examples), Benjamin Finner (or Fenner) was born in England about 1796. He must have been in the Bytown area fairly early on, as he was a soldier with the 37th Regiment of Foot. His wife Mary Mantle was also an early Bytown area pioneer: born in Rathcormac, Co. Cork about 1808,* she emigrated with her parents John Mantle and Ellen Horgan/Hourigan in 1823as part of the Peter Robinson settlement.

Benjamin Finner, a Protestant, married Mary Mantle, a Catholic, about 1827 or 1828. Their children were all baptized RC, and on 23 August 1838 (St. Philip’s, Richmond), Benjamin Finner was also baptized RC (with his brother-in-law James Mantle and James’s wife Margaret O’Brien serving as sponsors):
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Benjamin Finner can be found in the 1851 and 1861 census returns for Fitzroy township, Carleton Co., Ontario, where his birthplace is listed as England (his wife Mary’s birthplace is listed as Cork, Ireland in the 1851 census, and she died [1858] before the 1861 enumeration).

Peter Doyle and Elizabeth Moran

Here’s another “blended family” from the 1881 Canadian census:

Peter Doyle, with wife Elizabeth Moran (daughter of James Moran and Margaret Jamieson), and six children (transcription by ancestry.ca; with original image [LAC] here):

doyle_peter_1881census.jpg

When I first looked at this return, I mistakenly assumed that all six children were the offspring of Peter and Elizabeth. An all too common assumption which sometimes turns out to be utterly faulty, as already mentioned here. And when I found Elizabeth Moran in the 1871 census, still unmarried and still living with her family (her widowed mother Margaret Jamieson and her siblings Thomas and Henrietta Moran) in Huntley township, I suspected that I might have to look a bit further into the available sources. Of course, the recorded ages of the above children might be off by several years (for 19th-century census returns, you should probably be prepared to potentially add or subtract about five years or so from the recorded birth year), but still: I had to wonder about the apparent discrepancy.

Details, Details (Cause of Death Uncovered, or at least Strongly Inferred)

Like most people who get hooked on genealogy, I’m attracted to the detective work aspect of the enterprise. A clue here; a detail there; another hint here, which, combined with a few previously discovered clues and details, finally provides a solid lead; and then: bingo! a nice little nugget of documented and verifiable information, which may then serve as a clue for some other discovery; and on (and on!) it goes.

It’s very easy to overlook a relevant detail, though.

Alias = Otherwise

If you come across a female ancestor described as “[Surname] alias [Surname]” in the parish register, you should certainly not assume that your great-grandmother led a double life, or had some sort of involvement with the cloak-and-dagger world of international espionage. While we now tend to think of an “alias” as a false name assumed for dubious, if not criminal, purposes, within the context of the parish register, it meant nothing so exciting or intriguing as that. It just meant “otherwise,” or “otherwise called/otherwise known as,” and was a way of recording a woman’s name with reference to both her family/maiden and her married surnames.
From the parish register for St. Michael’s, Corkery (Huntley township, Carleton Co., Ontario), the burial record for Margaret Jamieson, widow of James Moran, listed here as Margarette Jameson alias Moran. She died 12 July 1882 (her Ontario civil death record lists the cause of death as “Weakness”), and was buried at St. Michael’s RC Cemetery at Corkery, Huntley township on 14 July 1882, with her sons Thomas and Alexander Moran serving as burial witnesses:

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The inverse of “[Family or Maiden Name] alias [Married Name]” is of course “[Married Name] née [Family or Maiden Name]” (which in the above case would be Moran née [born as] Jameson), which is the formulation that you will probably most often see.

Catholics in Arnprior: Which Registers to Search?

Searching the early Roman Catholic parish registers for your Ottawa Valley ancestors can be a bit confusing, at least until you get a sense of the lay of the land. Basically, if you want to find all relevant baptismal and marriage records for your family, you’re almost certainly going to have to search more than one register, and probably at least a few.
Before the formation of regular, local parishes, many Catholics in the Ottawa Valley were served by travelling missionary priests, who made periodic visits to a given village or township to perform baptisms, marriages, and less frequently, burials, and who then recorded the performance of these sacraments in any number of possible parish registers, sometimes many miles away from an ancestor’s address.