Tag Archive for Leavy

Cause of Death: Conflicting Accounts

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James Moran (1858-1899)

James Moran was born about 1858 in Huntley township, Carleton Co., Ontario, the third of twelve children born to Alexander (“Sandy”) Michael Moran and Mary Ann Leavy.

On 27 November 1883 (St. Patrick’s, Fallowfield) James Moran married Sarah Jane Dooley, daughter of Thomas Dooley and his second wife Mary Coughlan. The couple had nine (known) children, with six of the nine surviving to adulthood.

Their eldest son Alexander (1884-1887) died at age two years and five months (cause of death listed as croup); and on the 28 September 1900 (a year and a half after the death of their father), their two youngest children Julia Gertrude (almost four years old) and James Joseph (2 years old) died in a ghastly accident: “by fire,” notes Father J.A. Sloan in the children’s burial records (St. Patrick’s, Fallowfield), with the cause of death listed as “accidental burning” in the Ontario civil registration of the deaths. Another daughter, Sarah Jane Moran, known as “Jennie,” died in early adulthood: she was a nurse who died in Ste. Agathe, Québec (presumably at the tuberculosis hospital).

James Moran and Sarah Jane Dooley farmed at Lot 15, Concession 6 in Nepean township, on land that had presumably been given or sold to the couple by Sarah Jane’s father Thomas Dooley (1810-1891).

In the 1891 census (Ontario, Carleton, Nepean, family no. 23), James Moran (here spelled Morin) is head of a household that includes his wife [Sarah] Jane; their children Mary, Thomas, and Matilda; Sarah Jane Dooley’s still unmarried sisters Mary and Matilda Dooley; along with a Home Child named Daniel Driscoll, and another domestic servant (probably not a Home Child) named Lizzie Casey. By this time, the 82-year old Thomas Dooley had apparently retired from farming and moved to Ottawa, where he lived with his son-in-law Michael Harrington and his daughter Maria (one of the daughters from his first marriage to Catherine Quinn, and a therefore a half-sister to Sarah Jane Dooley) (see 1891 census: Ontario, Ottawa City, St George’s Ward, family no. 179).

John Leavy and Jane Byrne

My 3x great-grandparents Jane Byrne (born about 1811, died after April 1881) and John Leavy (1801-1881):

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John Leavy’s headstone (Indian Hill RC Cemetery, Pakenham, Lanark Co.) identifies him as “a native of Co. Longford, Ireland;” Jane Byrne was presumably also a native of that Irish county.
This couple married about 1830 in Ireland (presumably Co. Longford), and had three children (Patrick; Mary Ann [my great-great-grandmother]); and James) born in Ireland; before emigrating to Upper Canada around 1834, where they settled at Pakenham, Lanark Co., Ontario, and had six more children (Thomas; Ellen; John; Michael; Jane; Elizabeth).
John Leavy’s last will and testament transcribed here.
Mary Ann Leavy married Alexander (“Sandy”) Michael Moran, son of James Moran and Margaret Jamieson.

Moran-Leavy house moved to Galetta

Alexander (“Sandy”) Michael Moran and Mary Ann Leavy built this stone house on Concession I, Lot 11 in Huntley township, Carleton Co., Ontario. Sandy Moran had acquired the land in January 1857, when he purchased the property from his father James Moran for the sum of 100 pounds (this money may have been intended as some sort of provision for his mother and sisters). In the 1861 census for Huntley township, Alex Moren and wife Mary (along with children John, James, Margaret, Ernestine, and Julia) are listed as the occupants of a 1 and 1/2 storey log house. So presumably the stone house was built after 1861. In 1913, son Thomas Edwin Moransold the property, perhaps to the Cleary family (who were apparently the owners of the house in the 1940s).

My father once took me to see this old house when I was a child.

From the Carp Valley Press, 26 May 2000, the story of how a couple purchased the home, which had been abandoned for twenty years, and moved it stone by stone to their riverfront property in the village of Galetta. (Click on thumbnail preview below to see larger image):
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Conditional Baptism

While going through RC parish registers in search of your Catholic ancestors, you may come across the phrase “baptized conditionally” or “baptized sub conditione,” or, in French, “baptisé(e) sous condition.” What did the padre mean, you may wonder, by this seemingly cryptic communication?

What the priest meant, basically, was that he had performed the baptism with words to the effect of, “If you are not already baptized, I baptize you.”

Children of Sandy Moran and Mary Leavy

Alexander (“Sandy”) Michael Moran (1830-1892) and Mary Leavy (1832-1907) had the following children:

  • John (1854-1921)
  • Margaret Jane (1856-1873)
  • James (1858-1899)
  • Mary Ernestine (“Tina”) (1859-1943)
  • Thomas Edwin (1860-1942)
  • Julia Amanda (1864-1941)
  • Ellen Elizabeth (“Nellie”) (1866-1947)
  • Mary Eugenie Gertrude (“Minnie”) (1868-1953)
  • Anne [or Anastasia?] (“Annie”) (1871-?)
  • Alexander Michael (“Alec”) (1872-1939)
  • Mary Emelia [sometimes Emma] (“Em”) (1874-1963)
I wish I had a better copy of this photo, it’s a scan of a photocopy. I don’t know when exactly it was taken, but at some point in the 1890s (and before the death of James in 1899).


Back row: Annie [Moran] Sullivan; Thomas Edwin Moran; Sarah Jane Dooley?; Mary Eugenie Gertrude (“Minnie”) [Moran] Fagan. Centre Row: Unidentified; James Moran; Unidentified. Front Row: Alexander (“Alec”) Michael Moran; Mary Emelia (“Em”) [Moran] Delaney.

Memories of the Morans

Emmett Patrick Sloan (1920-2007) was the son of John Percival Sloan and Mary Lillian Fagan, and a descendant, through his mother’s side, of James Moran and Margaret Jamieson. He was also a family historian who spent years constructing a very detailed family tree, which involved tracing any number of Morans and Leavys across North America. A few months before he died, he sent me his memories of my great-grandparents Alexander (‘Alec,’ ‘Alex’) Michael Moran (1872-1939) and Anna Maria (‘Annie’) Benton (1871-1947). He also gave me a big, thick binder of his Moran family history research notes, for which I am extremely grateful.

Last Will and Testament of John Leavy

John Leavy1 was born in Co. Longford about 1801, possibly (this is undocumented) the son of Patrick Leavy and Mary Bambrick. Around 1830, he married Jane Byrne, who was born in Ireland (presumably Longford) about 1811. The couple had nine known children, with the first three — Patrick (1831-1886), Mary (1832-1907), and James (1833-1909) — born in Ireland; and the next six — Thomas (1835-1916), John (1837-1926), Ellen (1841-1930), Michael (1843-?), Jane (1846-1934), and Elizabeth (1850-1921) — born in Pakenham township, Lanark Co., Ontario. The children’s birth dates (the dates are approximate for the Irish-born children) indicate that the family emigrated to Canada in 1833 or 1834.

The Leavys farmed at Concession 11, Lot 22 and/or Lot 23,2 Pakenham township, Lanark Co., Ontario.

John Leavy died 8 April 1881; an Ontario civil death record lists the cause of death as “Asthma.” He was buried 11 April 1881 at St. Peter Celestine RC Cemetery (aka Indian Hill Cemetery) in Pakenham; a headstone describes him as “Native of Longford Ireland.” His will, which he signed (or rather, marked with an X) on 3 March 1877, was filed 4 June 1881, at which point his personal estate was valued at one thousand three hundred dollars. I have not yet found a burial record for his wife Jane Byrne, who apparently survived him but who probably died before 1891.

Last Will and Testament of John Leavy3

I John Leavy of the Township Pakenham, County of Lanark, and Province of Ontario, Yeoman, being in a sound and disposing State of Mind do make the following distribution of the property owned by me in this my last Will and Testament
After paying my just and lawful debts and burial expenses
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1st I Will and bequeath to my beloved wife Jane Leavy One hundred dollars per annum during the term of her natural life; the payment of said Annuity to be due and payable at the expiration of One Year after my decease; and each Succeeding Annuity to be due and payable with same order as to time, during the term of my wife’s Natural life

2nd I Will and bequeath to my daughter Mrs Morin [Mary Leavy, who married Alexander Michael Moran] one hundred dollars

3rd Having given my daughter Mrs Gormerly [Ellen Leavy, who married Patrick Gormley] one hundred dollars, I leave her nothing

4th I Will and Bequeath to my daughter Mrs Mcgunnigal [Jane Leavy, who married Patrick McGonigal] One hundred dollars

5th I Will and bequeath to my daughter Mrs McGary [Elizabeth Leavy, who married Henry McGarry] One hundred dollars

6th I Will and bequeath to my son Patrick Leavy One hundred dollars

7th I Will and bequeath to my son Thomas Leavy One dollar

8th I Will and bequeath to my granddaughter Cathrine Alice Leavy daughter of my son James Leavy [and his second wife Alice Farry], One hundred dollars, to be paid to her when she arrives at the age of eighteen, or when she gets married

9th With a view to carry out my intentions, as set forth in My last Will and Testament, I hereby nominate and appoint my son James Leavy, Alexander Moren [his son-in-law Alexander Michael Moran, husband of Mary Leavy], and Robert Dickson executors to this my last Will and Testament

10th In the event of there being a surplus of funds in the hands of my Executors, at the time of the death of my wife, after paying the foregoing bequests, I will and bequeath to my son Michael Leavy said Surplus

John X Leavy his mark [his X mark on the paper]

We the undersigned were present and saw John Leavy, Senior signe, or make his name to the above as his Last Will and Testament on the 23rd day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and Seventy-Seven

James Levy [his signature] Robert Dickson [his signature]

  1.  Numerous variant surname spellings include Leavey, Levy, Levi, Levie, Levey, Lavey and Lavie.
  2.  In the Census of 1851, Canada West (Ontario), Lanark (county), Pakenham township, Schedule B (agricultural census), John Leavy is found at Concession 11, Lot 23 (200 acres). Later documents place his son James at Concession 11, Lot 22.
  3.  Will of John Leavy, filed 4 Jun 1881, Lanark County Surrogate Court estate files, file #524: microfilm reel 439, Archives of Ontario, Toronto.