Irish Cred

Some of you know that both our daughters wed this year. (1) Both grooms have notable Irish heritage, each with a first-generation grandfather, born here to Irish immigrants. One couple has visited Ireland; the other one is already talking about it…

Some of you know that both our daughters wed this year. (1)  Both grooms have notable Irish heritage, each with a first-generation grandfather, born here to Irish immigrants.  One couple has visited Ireland; the other one is already talking about it.  I can’t offer any Irish roots but the Father of the Brides can.

It’s been a long while since I worked on his Gleason line but attending a recent magnificent event, with many Ancient Order of Hibernian tri-color sashes in evidence, launched me into action. (2)  My girls could use some Irish cred.

It’s a genealogical cliche – “Three brothers came to America….” – but, in this case, it’s true.  The two oldest Gleason brothers, Thomas (age 26) and Dennis (age 24), sailed from Limerick and arrived in Boston on 2 September 1847 – part of the potato famine exodus. (3)  Younger brother Patrick had joined them by 1855, perhaps accompanied by their mother. (4)

Their family relationship is made clear by death records; all three list these parents:

Edmund (or Edward) Gleason & Bridget Stevens, County Clare, Ireland (5)

Instead of moving to Boston like many Irish immigrants, the brothers settled in Barnstable County, Massachusetts, on Cape Cod, in the town of Barnstable.  Dennis was there nearly right away; in 1850, he and his wife Margaret, also of County Clare, were living in the household of merchant Timothy Baker. (6) His occupation was that of laborer.   Dennis was the only brother to become a naturalized citizen. (7)

According to state census records, composition of the Gleason household in 1855 was: (8)
 
Name                       Age                 Occupation             Presumed Relationship      
Bridget Gleason          66                                                  Mother of three brothers      
Thomas Gleason         34                   Laborer                    Oldest brother      
Margaret Gleason        32                                                 Wife of middle brother, Dennis (9)      
Dennis Gleason          32                    Laborer                    Middle brother      
Patrick Gleason          30                    Laborer                   Youngest Brother      
Mary E. Gleason          4                                                   Daughter of Dennis and Margaret      
Joseph J. Gleason        2                                                  Son of Dennis and Margaret     

Dennis and Thomas each headed their own households in the same dwelling in 1860. (10)  Patrick and his wife, Kate (Shea), another native of Ireland, lived with Thomas.  In 1870, Dennis and Patrick headed adjacent households; now Thomas lived with Dennis. (11)

By 1880, Patrick and Kate’s family had grown to include three children, Mary (Molly), Edward, and Hannah.  Thomas was not living with either brother. (12)

Dennis and Patrick died in 1892 within six months of each other, Dennis of heart disease, and Patrick, of stomach cancer. (13)  In 1900, Thomas, who apparently never married, was living with Dennis’ widow, Margaret; he died in 1905 at the age of 88. (14) 

It’s Molly (1866-1947) of the Gleason first American-born generation, daughter of Patrick and Kate, who married James E. Odell; she is the 2nd great grandmother of the brides. (15)

Here she is as a young woman: (16)

Mary_gleason_odell_smaller

 
And, again in circa 1923, “Nana” with older siblings of the brides’ grandfather, Gerry Odell. (17)

Mollie_gleason_odell_smsm

You will hear more about Molly’s brother, Edward – because he was a fascinating person in his own right.  And there’s plenty more digging to be done – on both sides of the Atlantic.  If the newlyweds really take that trip, maybe I can send along a to-do list. 

—————————————————————-

(1) If there’s anything more exciting to a mother/genealogist than having two happy and beautiful brides, it’s the thought of four new families to research!

(2) Much of this preliminary research was done under the tutelage of the staff of the New England Historic Genealogical Society in June of 2009 during a “Come Home to New England” guided research week.

(3) “Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Boston, Massachusetts, 1820-1891,” digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 July 2009), entry for Thomas Gleason, age 26, and Dennis Gleason, age 24, departed from Limerick, arrived 31 August 1847 aboard Bark D D; citing NARA microfilm publication M277, roll 23. The ship name appears on the image; in the index it is listed only as “D D.”

(4) 1855 Massachusetts State Census, Barnstable County, Barnstable (town), p. 20, entry for dwelling 919, family 935 headed by Dennis Gleason; digital images, FamilySearch (http://www.familysearch.org : accessed 27 November 2011) ; citing “Massachusetts State Census, 1855-1865” Massachusetts State Archives, Boston, Massachusetts,  FHL 953,973.

(5) “Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910,” digital images, American Ancestors (http://www.americanancestors.org : 24 March 2009) 1892, 427:1, death record for Dennis Gleason; citing records held by Massachusetts State Archives.  “Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910,” digital images, American Ancestors (http://www.americanancestors.org : 24 March 2009) 1892, 427:3, death record for Patrick Gleason; citing records held by Massachusetts State Archives. “Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910,” digital images, American Ancestors (http://www.americanancestors.org : 29 June 2009) 1905, 3:356, death record for Thomas Gleason; citing records held by Massachusetts State Archives.

(6) 1850 U. S. Census, Barnstable County, Massachusetts, pop. sched., Barnstable (town), p. 307 (stamped), dwelling 52, family 388, Dennis Gleason household of Timothy Baker, digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 25 November 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication M432, roll 304.

(7) Naturalization file for Dennis Gleason, Vol. 12, p. 4, 8 October 1854, U.S. District Court, Boston, Massachusetts. Records of the District Courts of the United States, Record Group 21; National Archives, Northeast Region, Boston, Massachusetts.

(8) 1855 Mass. Census, Barnstable Co., p. 20, dwell. 919, fam. 935, Gleason.

(9) James McLaughlen, “Barnstable, Massachusetts transcribed records of marriages and births,” handwritten transcription in six volumes, 1953; Vol. 5, part 2, Mss. 518; R. Stanton Avery Special Collections Department;  New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, Massachusetts.

(10) 1860 U. S. Census, Barnstable County, Massachusetts, pop. sched., Hyannis Post Office, p. 98-99, dwelling 866, family 911 and 912, households headed Dennis and Thomas Gleason; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 November 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication M653, roll 486.  “Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910,” digital images, American Ancestors (http://www.americanancestors.org : 3 June 2010) 1904, 18:354, death record for Catherine Gleason, Boston; citing records held by Massachusetts State Archives.  No marriage record has yet been located for Patrick and Catherine.

(11) 1870 U. S. Census, Barnstable County, Massachusetts, pop. sched., Barnstable post office, p. 55, dwelling 521-522, family 525-526, households headed by Dennis and Patrick Gleason; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 November 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication M593, roll 600.

(12) 1880 U. S. Census, Barnstable County, Massachusetts, pop. sched., Town of Barnstable, enumeration district (ED) 10, p. 45, dwelling 592, family 614, Patrick Gleason; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 November 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T9, roll 519.

(13) “Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910,” digital images, American Ancestors (http://www.americanancestors.org : 24 March 2009) 1892, 427:1, death record for Dennis Gleason; citing records held by Massachusetts State Archives.  “Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910,” digital images, American Ancestors (http://www.americanancestors.org : 24 March 2009) 1892, 427:3, death record for Patrick Gleason; citing records held by Massachusetts State Archives.

(14) 1900 U. S. Census, Barnstable County, Massachusetts, pop. sched., Hyannis village, enumeration district (ED) 1, p. 10A (stamped), dwelling 240, family 247, Margaret Gleason; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 November 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication M623, roll 631. “Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910,” digital images, American Ancestors (http://www.americanancestors.org : 29 June 2009) 1905, 3:356, death record for Thomas Gleason; citing records held by Massachusetts State Archives.

(15) “Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910,” digital images, American Ancestors (http://www.americanancestors.org : 24 March 2009) Marriages, 1887, 381:229, marriage record for James E. Odell and Mary Gleason; citing records held by Massachusetts State Archives.

(16) Picture of Mary Gleason downloaded from Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 2 July 2010) from the Barker Family Tree; images identified and in the possession of Bruce Barker [address for private use], 2010.
 
(17) Picture of Mary Gleason, with grandchildren Alice, Mary, James, and Yvonne Odell, circa 1923, privately held by Malissa Ruffner, [address for private use], Baltimore, Maryland. The picture was labeled and provided by Yvonne Odell McLravy.

1 thought on “Irish Cred”

  1. <html> <head> <meta content="text/html; charset=UTF-8" http-equiv="Content-Type"> </head> <body bgcolor="#FFFFFF" text="#000000"> Those little girls at each end (with grandma) remind me of yours when they were little. Strong genes!<br> <br></body></html>

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