Friday, March 11, 2011

Our Irish Roots

My maternal grandmother, Helen (Coyle) Gardner was the first of her family to be born in the United States rather than Ireland. She was the daughter of Michael & Mary Josephine (Mullane) Coyle. In time for Saint Patrick's Day, the story of their journeys from Ireland to the USA follow:

Servia.  Michael Coyle sailed on this ship in May 1885.
The Coyle branch of our family was living in County Cavan in the late 1700s/early 1800s. We have scattered in-formation about the family at that time. Patrick & Margaret (Brady) Coyle were married there in 1870. They had eleven children, seven born in Ireland. Their oldest child, Michael Coyle, b. 1870 came to America  alone and arrived in New York City on 11 May 1885 on the boat Servia. At that time, from the years 1855 until 1890, immigrants arrived in the United States through Castle Garden located on the southern tip of Manhattan.  This was our country’s first immigration station. In the years when Ellis Island was used by the Army and Navy as a recruiting depot and a place for storing gunpowder, over 8 million people arrived in the United States through Castle Garden.

S. S. Circassia. Patrick Coyle sailed on this ship in October 1885 to NYC.
Michael Coyle was only 14 and a half years old when he arrived in his new country.  Why he came alone and at such a young age is unknown. His mother was very domineering and he may have wanted to escape her control.  He may have been escaping from troubles with the British. Whether he welcomed the adventure of traveling alone or feared it, we can only guess.  Soon after Michael arrived in New York City, his father, Patrick Coyle, back in County Cavan, received word from friends in New York City that Michael was in trouble.  They suggested that Patrick get to America right away and keep an eye on his son. Patrick was the next to leave Ireland, arriving in New York City on 19 October 1885.  He came aboard the ship S. S. Circassia. The ship’s passenger list shows Patrick to be a 45 year old farmer.  Patrick was to remain in the United States for the rest of his life.

City of Berlin. Margaret (Brady) Coyle & family traveled on this ship in 1886.

The rest of Patrick’s family left Ireland.  Margaret (Brady) Coyle came to the United States with a party of seven other family members, including five children and her brother Bartholomew Brady. The boat they traveled on was called the City of Berlin. The group arrived at the Port of New York on 21 May 1886.  The Patrick Coyle family settled in Waterbury, Connecticut.  Bartholomew Brady went on to live in East Orange, New Jersey. Michael Coyle stayed in New York City where he met Mary Josephine Mullane.

Mary Josephine Mullane was born in 1867 in Clonmel, Tipperary, Ireland, daughter of Daniel & Brigid (Eng-lish) Mullane. Mary Josephine Mullane came to the United States with her cousin, Mary Pollack. Mary Jo Mullane and Mary Pollack were cousins because their mothers were sisters.  Mary was the daughter of David & Mary (English) Pollack.  They sailed from Queenstown on the S. S. Britannic. About that time the price for the tickets for passage from Queenstown to New York City on the White Star Line ship Britannic were: Saloon Rates, $50.00 and upward; Second cabin, $35.00 and upward; according to steamer and location of berths; Steerage $20.00. On the ship’s passenger list Mary Jo was 18 and listed as a ‘spinster.’ The cousins arrived in New York City on 25 May 1885.
S. S. Britannic. Mary Josephine Mullane traveled on this in 1867.

Michael Coyle met Mary Josephine Mullane in a boarding house in New York City. Family stories say he saw her coming down a flight of stairs in a boarding house and fell in love with her. They married in 1895 and had seven children, all born in New York City. Helen Francis (Coyle) Gardner, my Nana, was the oldest of those children.

 Descendants of Michael Coyle
..... 1 Michael Coyle b: 24 November 1870 Moate, Ireland, d: Unknown
..... + Mary Josephine Mullane b: 04 August 1867 Clonmel, Tipperary, Ireland, m: 09 November 1895 in St. Bridgid's, N.Y., d: 17 December 1927 in Bronx, Bronx, NY

........... 2 Helen Frances Coyle b: 9 Jan 1897 NY, d: 13 Oct 1965 Hudson, Columbia, NY
........... + Nathaniel J. Gardner b: 21 July 1882 in New York, New York, m: 09 May 1921 in Manhattan, Kings, NY, d: 07 December 1944 in Germantown, Columbia, NY
................. 3 Alberta Joy Gardner b: 26 March 1928 NY, d: 10 August 1992 Albany,NY
................. + Delbert Keith Brown b: 27 July 1928 Rittman, Wayne, OH, m: 8 August 1948 in Germantown, Columbia, NY, d: 24 October 2000 in Hudson, Columbia, NY
........... 2 Frank Coyle b: July 1898 NY, d: 7 December 1899 in New York, NY
........... 2 Marion Coyle b: 19 March 1900 NY d: 09 Jan 1991 Sun City, Maricopa, Arizona
........... + James Joseph McCall b: 28 Jan 1898 in NYC, N.Y., m: 5 April 1931 Bronx, NY, d: 25 March 1944 Manhattan, N.Y.
........... + William Francis Kunemund b: 22 September 1895 USA, m: 21 Dec 1967 Bronx, Bronx, NY, d: 20 February 1987 in Lake Wales, Polk, Florida
........... 2 Marguerite C Coyle b: 24 Dec 1901 NY, d: 13 March 1980 Sun City,  AZ
........... + Wilfred Stewart Marshall b: Abt. 1901 in England, m: 29 Dec 1933 Bronx, NY
........... 2 Thomas Coyle b: Abt. 1904 in New York, New York, d: Aft. 1930
........... 2 Lillian Agnes Coyle b: 18 Sept1911 in Manhattan, Kings, NY, d: 03 June 1987 in Sun City, Maricopa, Arizona,
........... 2 Kathleen Gloria Coyle b: 31 Oct1916 Manhattan, Kings, NY, d: 21 Nov 2007  Sun City West, Arizona


  1. Welcome to the Geneabloggers family. Hope you find the association fruitful; I sure do. I have found it most stimulating, especially some of the Daily Themes.

    May you keep sharing your ancestor stories!

    Dr. Bill ;-)
    Author of "Back to the Homeplace"
    and "13 Ways to Tell Your Ancestor Stories"

  2. I truly enjoy researching the ships our ancestors immigrated on. I like to look for newspaper articles that refer that specific voyage. Sometimes you can find some really interesting facts.
    Theresa (Tangled Trees)


Thanks for stopping by my blog & for leaving a comment. It is always good to hear from visitors, cousins & fellow bloggers. Note that I do not publish anonymous comments.