Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Who Would Have Thunk?

Who would have thought that in spring of 1880 there could be so MANY woman named Mary O'Brien(O'Brian) that got off a ship from Ireland(or by way of England from Ireland)into the USA?!

After the last 3 hours of looking for one particular woman by that name, I can, with a fair amount of certainly tell you you that approximately 4 MILLION did! lolol

I found her husband fairly quickly because I guess Morris O'Brien is not as common a name in that era or not as many Morrises(Morri?...what's the plural of Morris?)emigrated to America in 1880.

Ok, another hour on Mary O. and then I'm onward to the kids, Honora(Anura), Mary and Margaret.
Oh great!.....they named their daughter Mary too.
Why couldn't they have more imagination when naming their kids, right?

Sluggy--who is going back into the suckhole of ancestors


  1. Apparently, "There's Something About Mary"!

  2. lol....that and I have an ancestor who liked to lie about his age too. In 1880 census he gave his age as 28, in 1900 Census he gave his age as 49(possible as the census wasn't always done the same month)....then in 1910 he is magically 57.
    Who says women are the only ones who are sensitive about their age?lol

  3. Oh honey, I am in the same boat! I have been trying to find any information on a Pearl Mabel Riley. Had no clue there would be so damn many of them! All in Iowa! All with a father named James!

    And yeah, if you read the top of each census it tells when it was actually taken. They walked to do a lot of these and it took F O R E V E R. Sometimes the 1900 census for your area might not have been done till 1903 or 05.

    I found my great grandfather in 2 different censuses (censi? : ) ) because during that time he lived in 2 different counties when they happened to be counting them.

    And don't get me started on those wiener census-takers and their handwriting and spelling abilities. Oh Lawzy!

  4. Come on Catholic Ireland, Mary was the most honorable name you could give your daughter. The Brian Clan one of the largest. Hence many Mary O' (of the house of) Brian. Good luck!

  5. LisaPie--I too have found an ancestor listed in 2 different places in the same year.

    "Sometimes the 1900 census for your area might not have been done till 1903 or 05."

    Well this would explain how an ancestor in the 1880 census, taken on June 4/1880, who was listed as 9 mo. old at that time also was checked as being born in the same year as when the census was if she was 9 mo. old in June that would mean her birth month was Sept. 1887...or they ACTUALLY did the census later than June 4th 1880.
    Add in that she is also listed in that census as being "born at sea" under Birthplace and the ship I think they came over on arrived in NY harbor on May 10 1880. Typical ocean voyage at that time being 6 weeks or a little more means they set off from Liverpool around early March 1880, putting her birthdate between Mar. 1880 and June way she was 9 mo. old in June right?lol

  6. Out My Window--Yah, I know.....the one first name worse to sort out is Catherine or Katherine...of which I have a few of those too!lol

    Hey, did you know that if you have O'Brien or O'Brian in your line, you have claim to being a descendant of Brian Boru? That's where the surname originated.
    Oh yes, indeedy!....I am descended from Irish royalty.....going to go get fitted for my crown, what I am! ;-)

  7. Wow, doing your genealogy can be quite a pain. My family tried to do ours but most of the records were destroyed during the World War Two :(

  8. I have to laugh because my great 3xs is mary obrien and her daughter is katherine O Brian Manning....who knows maybe we are related.

    We are from cork though and half the family settled in Philly and half settled in Ashland/Centralia

  9. And sluggy as my grandmom would say(God rest her soul) don't be getting above yourself. If you get a crown we all get a crown

  10. I have an aunt Jean whose name is really Jeanette, but is listed on the census and Gene, a male. It is scratched through and corrected. But, it goes to show that was a census-taker's fault. He probably hear "Jean" and knew a "Gene" and listed the child as a male. I took a genealogy class that really enlightened me to all the problems that we could encounter because of the census takers. It made me want to throw up my hands before I started.

    I am searching and finding lots of Wilson men by the name of Tom. It does not help me at all to be faced with pages of these guys, especially since I know that is a family name. Obviously, it was a family name for many generations of other families, too.

  11. Lena--Yah, once you get to Europe, searching gets much more difficult sometimes. Too bad about your family's records but I know what you mean.
    Maybe you'd have better luck with your husband's ancestors?

    I've got a WW II problem too but it's VERY different than yours. And in due time I'll tell about it.

  12. Judy--I've got O'Briens, Bowmans, McCarthys, Redferns, O'Neals, Forresters(or Fosters) and McGoverns....and that is just my father's side!
    And yes we ARE related at some point because they are all(so far)from or never left County Cork. 8-))

    Maybe I can get us a deal on crowns if I buy em wholesale? ;-)

  13. Judy again....I've traced 1 line back to Limerick/Limerick County, another in Aghagaskin(that's the parish), village of Magherafelt in Derry County(now Londonderry)in Northern Ireland(long before all that civil war and country dividing started)so not all my peeps started out as Corkers.
    I also meant to say our County Corks(so far)came through NY not Philly pre-1900. Paternal grandmother's side went to MA, then CT, then back to MA....paternal grandfather's side went to NY, then to CT, then back to NY in the Newburgh NY area. I did find 1 rascal in NY who married a second time(widowed)and then started migrating west...first through PA(where they had a kid) and they ended up in Montana as early as 1868. He died in 1888.
    I just knew I had a few non-conformists in my genes!lol

  14. PracticalP--Yah, I've already run across a fair amount of misinformation....wrong sex, wrong spelling or wrong name totally, ages and names transposed between siblings and an ancestor who liked to shave a few years off his age every 10 years, so looks who is vain now?!lol
    Having a common names is horrible when you are looking but the fact that most of the population didn't move around much works in your favor if you hook into the right group of that surname. And it helps if someone before you kept some darn good records too!lol


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