Sunday, 11 June 2017

The family of John Doherty & Margaret Esmonde of Old Town Toronto

I posted one of the invaluable pieces of research I've found in the past month about my 1st cousin 3x removed, John Doherty (1807-1872) here. I think I've now found all 12 of John and Margaret Doherty's children, thanks to baptismal, marriage and burial records in Toronto.
  • Mary SARAH (1839-1920) m Edward McFeely (1832-1898)
  • Edward James (1840 - ?)
  • Patrick James (1841-1856)
  • Frances Helen (1843-bef 1854)
  • John Thomas (1844- ?)
  • Henry (abt 1846-?)
  • Margaret (abt 1847-bef 1930) m Charles N. Dickson (abt 1855-bef 1930)
  • Thomas (1848-1909) m Jane Elizabeth Dermody (1860-1924)
  • Martha (abt 1850- aft 1930)
  • Rosanna (1852-1854)
  • Frances (1854- ?)
  • Rosanna Teresa (1858-1948) m Thomas Waldron (1856-1913)
Here are several of the St Paul's Church baptismal records I've located:

Mary Sarah baptized 20 Jan 1839

Edward James baptized 24 May 1840 

Patrick James baptized 22 May 1841

Frances Helen baptized 14 Nov 1843 (d bef 1854)

John Thomas baptized 29 Dec 1844
Again, look at the name of one of John's sponsors. Was this Thomas Doherty another relative, or one of the many unrelated Dohertys living in Toronto at that time?

Margaret baptized 31 Jan 1847
Again, look at the name of one of Margaret's sponsors. Another Thomas Doherty.

Thomas baptized 1 Nov 1848

Rosanna baptized 31 May 1852 (d 1 Jan 1854)
Frances baptized 5 Feb 1854
If you're counting, yes, this is only nine. I'm still looking for the baptismal records of the remaining three. As you can see, recycling of names of deceased children was as common in Canada as it was in Ireland.

Margaret Esmonde died on 7 May 1867, while her husband John died on 29 Jul 1872. Both are buried at St Michael's Cemetery in midtown Toronto. By 1857, the cemetery at St Paul's Church, where they were married and where their children were baptized was full in part due to the potato famine in Ireland. That cemetery is now under the adjacent elementary school yard.

St Michael's Cemetery grounds are now closed to the public because of vandalism concerns (don't get me started), but if I make an appointment, I may be able to wander through. I did wander through a couple of times many years ago, when the grounds were still open, and long before I knew that I had relatives buried there.

Working through unindexed parish registers is painstaking. So far, I've found that only three of John's and Margaret's children had children of their own. But there are three sons -- Edward, Henry and John -- whose stories I've yet to find. When I finish this exercise with St Paul's registers, those of St Michael's Cathedral, which opened in 1849, await.

I've also found several McFeely mentions in the St Paul's registers.

Perhaps one of their descendants will find this blog post in their own research.

The never ending story continues.....

© Margaret Dougherty 2016-2017 All rights reserved

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Dohertys, McFeelys and McCorkells everywhere

It seems like weeks that I've been adding my many new cousins to my database. Oh wait, it has been weeks. Remarkably though, none of these new cousins have done any DNA testing, or if they have, none have matched up with me, my two siblings and two first cousins who have all tested. Despite the many new people, some never married, while others married but had no children. But hope springs.

Just today, I've found 12 new 20th century McCorkell descendants to add to my database. Perhaps someone in the generation that follows them will share some DNA with me and mine.

At this point, I know of only two McFeelys who have done a DNA test, and they happen to be married to one another, each descended from a different brother-in-law of Mary Sarah Doherty McFeely (1839-1920). Yes, we're in touch.

From their 19th century Ontario (via Ireland) roots, the McFeelys and McCorkells, as I've already found, really are scattered across North America.

The hunt goes on, and the never ending story continues....

© Margaret Dougherty 2016-2017 All rights reserved

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Dungiven connections in 19th century Toronto

Have I mentioned how very pleased I am to have found ancestors who lived in Toronto? Honestly, I feel more legitimate now, participating in Ontario-centric genealogy Facebook or Twitter discussions.

Toronto was a small town in the 1800s. Spending just a couple of hours going through old Toronto city directories is revealing. In 1855--the clearest map I could find online--the core of Toronto looked like this:

1855 map,
Three Dungiven area natives had settled in Toronto, starting in about 1833 with John Doherty. After marrying Margaret Esmonde in 1837, John lived with their growing family and worked as a tinsmith on King Street near George Street, as early as 1843.

St Paul's Catholic Church baptismal records tell us that Edward and Susanna McCloskey McFeely and their own growing family were already in Toronto as early as 1838. The McFeely name doesn't appear in the 1833 or 1837 city directories--these are the only two earlier directories available. We know that the McFeelys had left Dungiven between the 1829 baptism there of their son John, and the 1932 baptism in Ste-Foy, Quebec of their son Edward, who would marry my ancestor Sarah Doherty in 1859.

But Edward McFeely does appear in the 1843 city directory living and working as a stone mason on Market Lane, a portion of which still exists today as a pedestrian thoroughfare  The McFeely family last appears in the 1850-51 city directory, living on Teraulay Street, which ran north-south between Queen and Gerrard Streets, east of Bay Street, quite near Toronto City Hall's present day location. Teraulay Street no longer exists.

Patrick and Sarah Doherty McCorkell were in Toronto when the 1850-51 city directory was published, joining Sarah's brother John, after spending perhaps four years at most in Saint John, New Brunswick. Patrick's occupation is given as labourer.

I've learned that Patrick and Sarah left their first-born, Augustine (1845-1903) behind in Ireland when they came to Canada in about 1846. I've also learned that Augustine was then brought to Quebec by his aunt, Elleanor Doherty (another new ancestor) in 1850. I'm guessing that Elleanor brought Augustine to Toronto to reunite with his parents. What happened to Elleanor remains a mystery...for now.

The McCorkells seem to have spent almost ten years in Toronto, last appearing in the 1859 city directory, living at 67 Richmond Street East, which is the present-day site of The Hudson's Bay Company flagship store. This makes sense, as they next appear in the 1861 Canada census .

As was noted by a newly-discovered McFeely cousin this week, these addresses are all near where I live in the oldest part of Toronto.

And so, by 1861 only John Doherty and his family remain in Toronto. The McFeelys had left for Buffalo with their large family by the early 1850s, while the McCorkells had left to farm land near present day Orillia, Ontario, north east of Toronto.

For a look at the present-day area of Toronto shown in the 1855 map, see Google Maps here.

Toronto in those years seems to have been full of people from the north of Ireland, based in small part by the St Paul's Catholic Church parish records. No doubt the Doherty, McFeelys and McCorkells had many familiar faces, or, at the least family names, several from the Dungiven area, around them in their daily lives. I can't imagine that happening in the 21st century, with populations so much bigger than they were in the 19th century.

The never ending story continues....

© Margaret Dougherty 2016-2017 All rights reserved

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

My Ontario Dohertys' descendants (there were many)

Where to begin? Gentle reader, since my last post, I've worked almost exclusively on tracing the trail of many new found ancestors, descendants of my 1st cousins 3x removed, siblings Sarah and John Doherty.

I'm almost there. What has caused no ends of confusion are that John's eldest daughter Mary Sarah Doherty married a man with the surname McFeely. As you know, Sarah Doherty married a McCorkell. You see how this can get confusing when spending hours sorting out descendants. And of course where John and Sarah's respective children had children, most of them had very large numbers of them.

I spent many days painstakingly going through the St Paul's parish register here in Toronto, where John Doherty and Margaret Esmonde had their children baptized. I've found 10 of them -- there were apparently 12 -- in that register.

John and Margaret's eldest, Mary Sarah Doherty--always called Sarah-- (1839-1920) married Edward McFeely (1832-1898) at St Paul's on 1 Nov 1859. The marriage details are recorded on one line of the register, across two pages, groom first, noting their ages, where they live, their parents' names, and of course the officiant's name.

McFeely-Doherty marriage 1 Nov 1859 Groom Details

McFeely-Doherty marriage 1 Nov 1859 Bride Details
Here's where things get interesting, and not for the first time.
  • Look who one of the witnesses was: John R. McCloskey. 
  • Edward's parents, also an Edward McFeely (1798-1879) and Susanna McCloskey (1806-1887) were married in Dungiven, Ireland, in the same church (St Patrick's) that my 2nd great grandparents, Marcus Dougherty and Mary Ann Diamond were married in, and where at least three of their children were baptized. 
  • Sarah's father John Doherty's mother was Bridget McCloskey. Were she and Susanna sisters, or was it an aunt/niece relationship? Was the wedding witness a brother to Susanna? The McCloskey name is one that appears frequently in my Dougherty ancestors' stories.
What is clear is that there were at least three families from the Dungiven area in Toronto in the early to mid 19th century: Doherty, McFeely, McCloskey and McCorkell (that last name will be addressed in a separate post). Community ties established in Ireland carried forward in Canada. But I digress.

Sarah and Edward McFeely settled first in Oakville, west of Toronto, and began their family, which grew to be ten children who survived infancy. Edward farmed. Within a couple of years, they pulled up stakes and moved to the present-day Lindsay in Ontario's Kawarthas region, where Edward is listed in directories and censuses as a tinsmith, like his father-in-law, John Doherty was in Toronto.

1881 Canada census, Victoria South, Ontario
At some point after the 1881 census, the McFeelys moved again, this time to Hennepin, which today is a county that includes the large city of Minneapolis. What brought them there, I wonder? Minneapolis also became home to a couple of Sarah's McCorkell cousins.

As young men, two of Sarah and Edward's sons, Francis Esmonde McFeely (1876-1948) and Edward John McFeely (1863-1928) went to Vancouver, British Columbia where both put down permanent roots, marrying and having three and six+ children respectively. Their father Edward actually died in Vancouver during an 1898 visit there. Another son, Robert (1873-1953) settled in Vancouver, Washington, while Fred (1868-1933) settled in New Orleans.

Of Sarah and Edward's daughters, the eldest, Susanna (1861-1900) married a much older man, who was a judge in Minnesota. They were childless. She died suddenly while on a return visit to her childhood home of Lindsay, Ontario. Agnes (1869-1956) married a railway man with whom she had four children. They moved around, living in St Louis, Brooklyn and finally Dallas. Martha (1871-1940) married a Hennepin man, with whom she had a daughter. They stayed in Minnesota.

Sarah died in Hennepin in 1920, where she had spent her final years living with her unmarried daughters Frances (1863-1941), Florence (1880-1948) and Madeline (1877-1955). Florence was a nurse and Madeline was an office clerk.

1920 US Census Minneapolis
This is the story of just one of John's children and her family. The never ending story continues....

© Margaret Dougherty 2016-2017 All rights reserved

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

John Doherty: A new 1st cousin 3x removed

Since discovering Sarah Doherty McCorkell a couple of weeks ago, I've been immersed daily, sometimes for hours at a time, in genealogy research, far more than usual. This work has been very rewarding and has led to a lot of extra work. It turns out that Sarah also had a brother, John Doherty (abt 1807-1872), previously unknown to me.

I discovered this after finding a family history written in the late 1960s/early 1970s by Edmund J. McCorkell CSB (1891-1980), The McCorkell Family and its Affiliates, online. Edmund was a grandson of Sarah Doherty McCorkell and, oh yes, 3rd cousin once removed. Edmund gathered his information long before the internet, and it is an impressive body of work, full of detail, including this:
"The McCorkells were welcomed in Toronto by the Dohertys, their in-laws, one of whom had come there before 1837, doubtless my grand uncle John Doherty. In his wife's prayer book there is recorded under date Nov. 20, 1837 his marriage with Margaret Esmonde (note the name Esmonde) and a family of 12 is listed.'
Well! this was another huge find. I quickly started to research John Doherty's life here in Toronto, in what we now call Old Town Toronto -- my neighbourhood. He was a tinsmith and probably arrived in Canada about 1833. On 20 Oct 1837, John married Margaret Esmonde (abt 1815-1867) at what was then the only Catholic church in Toronto, St Paul's Parish, which still stands today in the same location and is a ten minute walk from my home. Yes, that date contradicts the November 1837 date given in Fr McCorkell's account, but in my case, I actually found the record of the marriage in St Paul's parish register.

With his birth date, it looks like John was if not the eldest, certainly among the eldest of the children of my 2nd great-great uncle Thomas Doherty and 2nd great-great aunt, Bridget McCloskey of Dungiven, Ireland.

I've found John listed in several Toronto city directories. He lived and worked in my neighbourhood. Can you imagine? Here are John's children that I've so far found in the unindexed (!) St. Paul's parish register:
  • Mary SARAH (1839-1920)
  • Patrick James (1841-?)
  • Edward 
  • Frances Helen (1843-?)
  • Henry (abt 1846-?)
  • John (abt 1847)
  • Thomas (abt 1849-?)
  • Margaret (abt 1851-bef 1930)
  • Martha (abt 1850- aft 1930)
There are so many more stories that I'm uncovering, which I will try to tell here. John's descendants are scattered across Canada and the U.S.

And as I always say here, the never ending story continues....

© Margaret Dougherty 2016-2017 All rights reserved

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

The Ancients: Katherine Swynford 1350-1403

When I wrote about my Plantagenet 19th great grandfather John of Gaunt here, I mentioned that I am fascinated by the story of his three wives, Katherine Swynford.

On this day in 1403, my 19th great grandmother, Katherine de Roet Swynford, died in Lincoln. Much has been written about Katherine, but I especially like this 2015 post on the blog History...the Interesting Bits! by Sharon Bennett Connolly.

I enjoy reading Sharon's blog. It's always interesting and fun. I especially love Sharon's title of her post about my ancestor: Katherine Swynford, Duchess of Scandal.

The never ending story continues.....

© Margaret Dougherty 2016-2017 All rights reserved

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Discovering Sarah Doherty and her descendants

A tantalizing bright shiny object (BSO) presented itself to me early yesterday morning when a genealogy cousin reminded me that she had sent me details a month ago (!) about a new DNA match. I was out of the country when that happened, but she quickly filled me in. It's a big new find.

The DNA match showed that my genealogy cousin and another person's common ancestor is my 3rd great grandmother Isabella McLaughlin, and that connection is through someone new.

I have a new, previously unknown third cousin once removed, Sarah Doherty (1826-1861), a daughter of Thomas Doherty and Bridget McCloskey. Thomas was one of my 2nd great grandfather Marcus' brothers. The name Sarah confirms that this was a family name. It was a name given by her uncle Marcus Doherty (1815-1903) of Montreal and her great uncle Rev James Dougherty (1796-1878) of Vermont to their respective daughters.

Sarah's husband was Patrick Joseph McCorkell (1824-1904). They married before they emigrated from County Donegal in about 1850 to Canada, settling first in Toronto and then about two hours north of there in what is now Simcoe County. Some of her descendants are still there today. And speaking of descendants, well, I'm still populating my genealogy database with all of them.

The 1861 Canada Census shows Sarah, Patrick and their family living in Mara, near present day Orillia, Ontario.

Canada Census 1861, Township of Mara
As you can see, Sarah and Patrick had six children:
  • Augustine (abt 1945-1904)
  • James Edmund (bet 1848 & 1850 - 1923)
  • Catherine (1851-1927)
  • Patrick Joseph (1854-1933)
  • John (1856-1928)
  • Sarah (1858-1871)
I've already found that four of these sons married and had children. More descendants! Sadly, not long after the census was conducted, Sarah passed away. She was only 34 or 35 years old.

Sarah Doherty's grave marker. Photo found on Ancestry
Did you notice 25 year old Margaret Doughty (sic) on the census? I wonder who she was. She wasn't Sarah's sister -- we already know of that Margaret Dougherty (1819-1893), who was part of the Kingston, New York Doughertys

But wait there's more. The eldest son, Augustine, made his life in Cincinnati, arriving there by 1870, and staying there the rest of his life, marrying and having eight children.

Readers of this blog will know about my Cincinnati connections. Did he know my five 2nd great aunts and uncles who were there at the same time? They would have been his first cousins once removed, with their mother Sarah being first cousin to my 2nd great grandfather, Marcus Dougherty (1794-1864).

Augustine, his wife, and some of their children are buried in the same Cincinnati cemetery as four of my 2nd great aunts and uncles.

Much work remains to be done, as I try to connect the dots of a Cincinnati connection between these two Dougherty family branches. These new discoveries have again back burnered my Filles du Roi research commitment, but this is far too huge a discovery to set aside.

The never ending story continues....

© Margaret Dougherty 2016-2017 All rights reserved

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

On this day: Cecily Nevill was born

by Edward Harding, 1792
from Wikipedia
Cecily Nevill (using the spelling of the day), my 17th great aunt, was born on 3 May 1415 in Raby Castle to Ralph Nevill, the Earl of Westmorland (1365-1425 and Lady Joan Beaufort (1379-1440).

Cecily was the wife of Richard of York, mother of Edward IV and Richard III (my dear cousin Richard of the car park), and aunt of Warwick the Kingmaker.

Cecily and Richard had 13 children in total. She shares her birthday with her daughter Margaret of York (1446-1503), who married Charles I, Duke of Burgundy.

She was called the Rose of Raby and Proud Cis at times during her life. From what I've read, Cecily strikes me as a strong woman, one not to be messed with. Read more about her remarkable life.

The never ending story continues .....

© Margaret Dougherty 2016-2017 All rights reserved