Census Records

James Fitzpatrick: Home Child

Found in the household of John Rowan and his wife Emma Hogan (Emily Julia Hogan, daughter of John Hogan and Marcella Moran) in the 1891 census of Huntley township (Lanark North, Ontario):

Jas. [James] Fitzpatrick, male, age 17, Dom. [Domestic], born England, father born England, mother born England, religion R.C. [Roman Catholic].

John Rowan Found in the household of John Rowan and his wife Emma Hogan in the 1891 census of Huntley township (Lanark North, Ontario): Jas [James] Fitzpatrick, male, age 17, Dom. [Domestic], born England, father born England, mother born England, religion R.C. [Roman Catholic].household, 1891 Census of Canada, Ontario, Lanark North, Huntley, family no. 18, p. 4, lines 21-25, and p. 5, line 1.

John Rowan household, 1891 Census of Canada, Ontario, Lanark North, Huntley, family no. 18, p. 4, lines 21-25, and p. 5, line 1.

This is quite possibly the James Fitzpatrick, listed as age 10 in 1884, who travelled on the SS Vancouver as a member of a party of Catholic Children, leaving Liverpool on 19 June 1884 and arriving at Quebec on 27 June 1884, with a final destination of Ottawa.

James Fitzpatrick is not found in the household of John Rowan and Emma Hogan in the 1901 census.

 

 

 

Home Children: Open Secrets (Part 1)

“Could you look up Mary Hogan?” asked my dad’s cousin Aggie. “I think she may have been,” and this added sotto voce, as if, even after so many years, there might yet be something to hide, “a Home Girl.”1

A Home Girl?

At the time, I knew next to nothing about the Home Child movement, the child emigration scheme which saw over 100,000 children sent from Britain to Canada between 1869 and 1930. And yet, I must have already encountered the term somewhere, because the “Home Girl” designation immediately made some sort of sense to me. I imagined an orphan: an orphan from England? (though Hogan is an Irish surname, obviously, and from the description provided by my father and his cousin Aggie, Mary Hogan certainly sounded Irish).2

Well, I had heard of the “Barnado Boys,” of course. Indeed, I had no doubt first encountered the term as a young girl, when I avidly devoured Lucy Maud Montgomery’s series about Canada’s most beloved (though fictional!) orphan girl ever. As a childhood devotee of “Anne with an e,” I had read of Marilla Cuthbert drawing a line in the sand at the thought of a Barnardo Boy, or, in a phrase which captures the casual racism of the time, a “London street Arab.”3

My father and his cousin recalled Mary Hogan from their childhood as a somewhat elderly and somewhat eccentric fixture on the Burke family farm: not quite a blood relation, perhaps, but no mere “hired girl,” either, and “almost family” through affinity and through sheer length of tenure: apparently she had been with the Laheys and the Burkes since forever.

Well, since at least as far back as 1891, at any rate…

  1. Oral interview with Mary Frances Agnes O’Neill, January 2007.
  2. As I was later to learn, there was nothing unusual about “English” Home Children of Irish origin. In fact, Ottawa (more specifically, St. George’s Home on Wellington Street in Ottawa, now Holy Rosary Rectory) was one of the main receiving centres for Catholic children sent to Canada from Great Britain under the auspices of various English Catholic “protection societies,” which apparently set themselves up as Roman Catholic alternatives to the Protestant-centred Barnardo scheme. Many, probably most, of these Catholic children were of Irish background. For more on the Catholic Home Child movement, see  Frederick J. McEvoy, “‘These Treasured Children of God': Catholic Child Immigration to Canada” (CCHA, Historical Studies, 65, 1999, 50-70).
  3. “‘At first Matthew suggested getting a Barnardo boy. But I said “no” flat to that. ‘They may be all right — I’m not saying they’re not, but no London street Arabs for me,’ I said. ‘Give me a native born at least. There’ll be a risk, no matter who we get. But I’ll feel easier in my mind and sleep sounder at nights if we get a born Canadian.'” Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables, cap. 1

Cause of Death for James Hourigan?

A couple of family connections have told me that James Hourigan, son of Thomas Hourigan and Julia Moran, died in the Great Fire of 1870. Their source of information was apparently Alec Lunney’s “My Maternal Ancestors,” which I posted here.1

But looking closely at Alec Lunney’s “My Maternal Ancestors,” I can’t help but notice that he doesn’t actually say that James Hourigan died in the Great Fire of 1870. Rather, he refers to James Hourigan as “James who died as a youth of 18 in the year of the Great Fire of 1870.” Well, details, details…but so much of genealogical research has to do with the details; and there is a difference, after all, between dying as a direct result of a catastrophe, and dying of some other cause altogether around about the time that the catastrophe occurred.

James Hourigan baptism.

Baptism of James Hourigan, son of Thomas Hourigan and Julia Moran, 12 Dec 1852. Basilique Notre Dame d’Ottawa (Ottawa, Ontario), Register of Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1852-1855, image 35 of 244, B. 271, James Hurrigan [Hourigan], database, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca/: accessed 19 February 2013), Ontario, Canada, Catholic Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1747-1967.

I have not (yet) found a church burial record for James Hourigan, though I do have his baptismal record (see above). Nor have I discovered an Ontario civil death registration, and this document I do not really expect to find: for the province of Ontario, the registration of deaths only began on 1 July 1869, and for the first decade or so after its inception, the record-keeping was quite spotty.
  1. From Alec Lunney’s  “A Collection of Family and Ottawa Area Information.”

1842 Upper Canada Census Online

Via John Reid’s Anglo-Celtic Connections, the 1842 Upper Canada Census (or some [most?] of what survives, at any rate) is now online (and free of charge!) at FamilySearch.org.

Not that I’m complaining, because online access (and free of charge, at that) is obviously quite wonderful, but: I suspect the indexing of names1 for this database has some glitches.2 For example, my search of this database for “James Moran” turned up nothing. And when I then tried “James Morin,” I also got nothing. Well, then, how about “Jas. Moran”? Nope, nothing. And “Jas. Morin”? Er, sorry, no, but still nothing.

I knew that James Moran could be found in this census, because I have the published transcription (published by the Ottawa Branch, Ontario Genealogical Society: 2000) of the 1842 census, Canada West, Carleton County (ed. J. M. Robinson).

  1. And note that it is only the (mostly male) heads of households who were identified by name in the 1842 Upper Canada census.
  2. These glitches are no doubt related to: illegible handwriting; unexpected name abbreviations; and strange surname variations.

Patrick Galligan/Gallaghan: Three Records of Death/Burial

I have not yet found an RC burial record for Patrick Galligan/Gallaghan, who was born about 1807 in Co. Cavan (probably parish of Kilmore), Ireland, and who emigrated to Canada about 1843. I have checked a number of Roman Catholic parish registers (e.g., St. Michael’s, Corkery; St. Michael’s, Fitzroy Harbour; St. Peter Celestine, Pakenham), but so far, no burial record. It may be that I am overlooking something obvious; it may be that I am overlooking something obscure. Or perhaps his burial was recorded and the record was subsequently lost, misplaced, or destroyed. Or perhaps his burial was never recorded in a parish register at all.

In any case, despite the lack of a church burial record, I do have three different records of the death or burial of Patrick Galligan:

Elizabeth Bowles: Home Child

Found in the household of Richard Tovey and his wife Catherine Gorman1 in the 1891 census of Bathurst township (Lanark South, Ontario):

Elizabeth Boles, female, age 9, dom [domestic], born England, father born England, mother born England, religion RC [Roman Catholic]

 

Richard Tovey household, 1891 Census of Canada, Ontario, Lanark South, Bathurst, family no. 10, p. 2, lines 21-25, and p. 3, lines 1-2.

Richard Tovey household, 1891 Census of Canada, Ontario, Lanark South, Bathurst, family no. 10, p. 2, lines 21-25, and p. 3, lines 1-2.

This 9-year old girl is very likely the Elizabeth Bowles, listed as age 7 in 1889, who travelled under the auspices of the Catholic Children Protective Society, arriving at Quebec (from Liverpool) on 10 June 1889, with “Kingston via GTR [Grand Trunk Railway]” the final destination for a party of 62 children under the charge of Mrs. Lacy.

Also in the household of Richard Tovey in 1891 (in addition to his wife Catherine and 5-year old son Thomas, that is) are his widowed mother-in-law Mary Gorman, his brother John Tovey, and another domestic servant by the name of Katie Martin (age 15, born Ireland, both parents born Ireland). Was Katie Martin also a Home Child?

  1. Catherine Gorman was Richard Tovey’s second wife. His first wife, who died in 1883 at the age of 37, was a Frances Ann McCann (daughter of Laurence McCann and Ann O’Reilly), who appears to be connected to my McGlade-Dunne ancestors, though I have yet to figure out the connection.

Death of Thomas Benton …

… And Dispersal of his Household of Five Daughters

When Thomas Benton died in Arnprior (Renfrew Co., Ontario) on 7 March 1890, he left behind one son and seven daughters.

His wife Hanora (“Annie”) Ryan had died over a decade earlier (28 January 1879), apparently of “inflammation of the bowels.”1 And three of the children of Thomas Benton and Annie Ryan had already married and set up their own households by the time of their father’s death:

That left five Benton daughters still at home when their father suffered a dreadful, and fatal, accident…

Thomas Benton Jr. was in Duluth, Minnesota with his wife Maggie Mulvihill (daughter of Michael Mulvihill and Bridget Cronin). 2
Catherine Benton, who had married John Finnerty (son of Peter Finnerty and Anne Havey) in 1875, was still in Arnprior, though she and her family would move to Cloquet, Carlton Co., Minnesota in 1892. And Bridget Benton, who had married James Finnerty (another son of Peter Finnerty and Anne Havey) in 1888, was also in Arnprior, with her husband and the eldest two of their eleven known children.

That left five Benton daughters still at home when their father suffered a dreadful, and fatal, accident.

  1. Dysentery?  appendicits? colitis? enteritis? The cause of death might have been any of these, or perhaps something else entirely.
  2. Although Thomas Benton Jr. had emigrated to Minnesota in 1883, he had at least briefly returned to Arnprior in the late 1880s, where he married Margaret (“Maggie”) Mulvihill. In the record of their marriage, St. John Chrysostom, Arnprior, 13 September 1888, he is described as “Thomas Benton of Duluth, hotel keeper.”

Lizzie Dickens (Dickinson?): Home Child

Found in the household of James Quinn and his wife Mary Ann Vallely in the 1891 census of Lanark (Lanark North, Ontario, p. 33, family no. 140):

Dickens, Lizzie, female, age 14, Orphan, Country of Birth Eng [England]

James Quinn household, 1891 Census of Canada, Ontario, Lanark North, Lanark, p. 33, lines 1-9.

Note the proximity of household 140 (above) of Lanark (Lanark North, Ontario) to household 144 (household of Michael Vallely) of Lanark (Lanark North, Ontario); and also note the family connection: Mary A. [Ann] Quinn of 140 was the daughter of Michael Vallely of 144. And in 1891, both households had an “Orphan” born in England (a Home Child, in other words), each with a very similar surname: William Dickison in the household of Michael Vallely, and Lizzie Dickens in the household of James Quinn and Mary Ann Vallely.

There was an Elizabeth Dickinson, listed as age 11 in 1887, who travelled under the auspices of the Liverpool Catholic Children’s Protection Society, arriving at Quebec on 5 September 1887, with Hotel Dieu, Kingston, Ontario as the final destination for a party of 96 children under the charge of Mrs. Margaret Lacy. Was Elizabeth Dickinson a younger sibling of the William Dickinson who came to Canada on the same voyage, and as a member of the same party?

And was the Elizabeth Dickinson who travelled with the Liverpool Catholic Children’s Protection Society in August 1887 the same “Lizzie Dickens” who is found in household 140 (household of James Quinn and Mary Ann Vallely) of the 1891 Lanark (Lanark Co., Ontario) census?

 

William Dickison (Dickinson?): Home Child

Found in the household of the widowed Michael Vallely in the 1891 census of Lanark (Ontario, Lanark North, p. 34, family no. 144):

Dickison, Wm [William], male, age 16, Orphan, Country of Birth Eng [England]

Michael Valley [Vallely] household, 1891 Census of Canada, Ontario, Lanark North, Lanark, p. 34, lines 4-7.

William Dickison’s religion is listed here as R.C. (Roman Catholic) — a potentially significant clue as to his parentage and origins, or, perhaps, a mistaken assumption on the part of the census enumerator. As I’ve noted before, the recorded religious affiliation of a Home Child must be interpreted with caution:  sometimes the census enumerator assigned the religion of the household head to an “orphaned” or “adopted” child who had been baptized/raised in another denomination.

That said, there was a William Dickinson, listed as age 12 in 1887, who travelled under the auspices of the Liverpool Catholic Children’s Protection Society, arriving at Quebec on 5 September 1887, with Hotel Dieu, Kingston, Ontario as the final destination for a party of 96 children under the charge of Mrs. Margaret Lacy.

In the 1901 census of Drummond township (Ontario, Lanark South, p. 8.) William Dickinson is the head and sole member of household no. 77.  His date of birth is recorded as 7 April 1875, with country of birth listed as England and year of immigration as 1887. His “Racial or Tribal Origin” is English, and his religion is R. Cath (Roman Catholic). Occupation: Laborer.