Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Book: Malachy McCourt’s History of Ireland

Malachy McCourt’s History of Ireland
Running Press, Philadelphia, 2004

This history “is a series of stories: the stories of the men and women who made Ireland’s history. Each is individual in itself, and makes a wondrous tale alone. But together, as a whole, they tell a story of Ireland."

I wish I’d had the chance to visit my Irish family; the Coyles in their small thatch roofed stone house in rural County Cavan or the Mullanes in their more urban home on the hillside in Clonmel, County Tipperary. I wish I could have sat beside a fire, looked into their freckled faces, and heard the stories of our family and tales of Ireland. Reading the stories in this book is like hearing those stories, night after night, a new tale each evening from the early days of the country and slowly moving to the modern world. A country is no more and no less than the people who live and have lived there. Knowing their triumphs and failures, their dreams and their daily drudgeries is learning the spirit of the land.

If you want to visit Ireland without leaving home, pick up a copy of this book from your library. Malachy McCourt knows how to tell a story. When I read this book I can hear the rhythm of Irish speech in the words and almost smell the wood smoke from my ancestor’s home.


Ireland before Patrick
The Land of Saints & Scholars
The Viking Invasion and the High Kings of Ireland
The Tudor Conquest and the Fall of the Gaelic World
The Seventeenth Century: Destruction, Chaos, and Loss
The Great Patriots
Ireland After the Great Hunger
A Terrible Beauty is Born: Proclaiming the Republic
A Century of Irish Voices
Birth Pangs of a New Nation
Ireland in the Modern World
People of Passion
People of Peace
A Chance for Reconciliation
The Celtic Tiger and the New Ireland
List of Works

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Sunday Obituary: Evelyn Sommers Larkin of CT

Evelyn S. Larkin, 83

Evelyn Sommers Larkin, 83, of 42 Elizabeth St., died Friday, Oct. 27, 1995, in her home after a long illness. She was the wife of William N. Larkin.

Mrs. Larkin was born on Aug. 2, 1912 in New Haven, a daughter of the late Julius B. and Harriet Heinze Sommers. She was a resident of Branford since 1953, moving from East Haven.

She was a former member of the New Haven Country Club.

Besides her husband, she is survived by two sons, William N. Larkin of East Haven and Jeffrey B. Larkin of Langley, Wash.; a brother, Charles F. Somers of Suffield; and three grandchildren.

Mrs. Larkin was predeceased by a sister, Lorraine Sommers.

Arrangements are with the Hawley Lincoln Memorial, 493 Whitney Ave., New Haven.

Memorial contributions may be made to Prevent Blindness Connecticut, 1275 Washington St., Middletown 06457.

"Evelyn S. Larkin, 83." The Ansonia Sentinel 29 Oct. 1995: B10.

1 Evelyn A Sommers b: 2 Aug 1912 in New Haven, CT, d: 27 Oct 1995 CT
... + William N Larkin b: 9 Feb 1914, d: 15 Apr 1996
......2 William N Larkin b: 27 May 1943, d: 20 Jan 2005
...... + Georgina Coates b: 10 Apr 1941, d: 15 Jan 1995

......2 Jeffrey B Larkin

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Sepia Saturday: Men & Cars

This week's Sepia Saturday photo of cars reminds me of a photo in my archives, taken probably in the early 1960s.

My father (Delbert Brown) & his brothers always loved cars.
They posed by these cars for this unique photo of all five brothers,
 standing in order of age.
Delbert K., Leo D., Larry L., Robert A., & William L. Brown

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Sunday Obituary: William N Larkin

William N. Larkin, 82

Branford – William N. Larkin, 82, of 42 Elizabeth St., died Monday after being stricken at his home. He was the widower of Evelyn Sommers Larkin. Mr. Larkin, son of the late William F. and Anna Brady Larkin, was born in Shelton Feb. 9, 1914. He lived in Branford since 1953. He graduated in 1937 from Amherst College. He then joined New Haven Clock Co. as purchasing agent, which he left to becomeplant superintendent for Sargant Lock and Hardware, retiring as sales manager for Briston Brass. He was a member of the Quinnipack Club, the Branford Yacht Club, the New Haven Country Club, the Graduate Club and had been president of the United Way in New Haven. He leaves sons, William N. Larkin, Jr. of East Haven and Jeffery Larkin of Langley, Wash; and three grandchildren. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society, 127 Washington Ave., North Haven 06473; or to the American Heart Association, 5 Brookside Drive, Wallingford 06492.

"William N. Larkin, 82." The Ansonia Sentinel 18 Apr. 1996, Death Notice sec.: A16.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

I Love Geneaology

Happy Saint Valentine's Day!

Do something you love today: sort your favorite photos, 
record a story about someone you love, 
update your branch of the family tree.
And be sure to reach out to living members of your family tree
 & let them know how much you love them.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Book: 1001 Things Everyone Should Know About Irish American History

1001 Things Everyone Should Know About Irish American History
By Edward T. O’Donnell
Broadway Books, NY 2002

This is another book from my genealogy bookshelves. It was a Mothers’ Day gift from our daughter and son in law. My children know that I love adding more resources to my library.

‘1001 Things’ is packed full of history, beginning with #1. Ice Age that tells us Ireland was covered by two major glaciers that were responsible for Ireland’s landscape and fertile topsoil. The ancient history section also includes #8 Celtic Ireland, #13 Druids, #24 Saint Patrick’s Mission and #34 The Book of Kells. Each topic may be as short as a paragraph or as long as a column. The book soon moves from ancient history and invasions to the beginnings of English rule, something I have found complicated. This book moves through time, step by step, starting with Norman invasions and King Henry II.

Part II, Coming to America begins with #126 The earliest Known Irish in America. This was Richard Butler in the year 1584 who came from Clonmel in County Tipperary and traveled to America with Walter Raleigh. Moving ahead in time you can read about #160 The First Irish Newspaper in America, The Shamrock, #175 Castle Garden which was the gateway into the country for most Irish immigrants, and #200 the Gold Rush. This section ends with #264, Look Who’s Turning up Irish.

“With Irish firmly established as ‘cool’ in the 1990s, a good many unexpected people began turning up Irish.”

One humorous note #664 - #674 are eleven common words with Irish origins: galore, shanty, spree, slogan, smithereens, shenanigans, spunk, whiskey, boycott, donnybrook and holligan.

Whether you’d like to learn more about Ireland & Irish history or you’d like to learn more about your ancestor’s world in Ireland or America, this book would be a good one for you to read.


Part I.           Ireland before 1850
Part II.          Coming to America
Part III.         Politics and the Law
Part IV.         Nationalism
Part V.          Religion
Part VI.         The Military Tradition
Part VII.        Culture
Part VIII.       Medicine and Science
Part IX.         Work, Business, and Innovation
Part X.          Sports

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Sunday Obituary: William F Larkin, Haberdasher

Deaths: Larkin

New Haven, July 22, William F Larkin, native of Shelton, former resident of Derby, husband of Mrs. Anna Brady Larkin, of 1523 Chapel Street, New Haven. Funeral Friday at 9:30 a.m. from the Sisk Brothers Funeral Home, 128 Dwight Street, New Haven, with a solemn high Mass of requiem at 10 a.m. in St. Brendan’s Church, New Haven. Interment in Mt. St. Peter’s Cemetery, Derby. Friends may call at the funeral home Thursday from 3 to 9 p.m.

"Larkin." The Ansonia Sentinel 22 July 1959, Deaths sec.: 1.

‘Bill’ Larkin, Haberdasher, Dies

William F. Larkin, husband of Mrs. Anna Brady Larkin of 1523 Chapel Street, New Haven, died this morning at his home. Mr. Larkin conducted a haberdashery business on Elizabeth Street and was a member of Derby Lodge of Elks.
Surviving besides his wife are a son, William N. Larkin of Branford and a sister Mrs. Patrick Marren of Derby.
The funeral will be held from the Sisk Brothers Funeral Home, 128 Dwight Street, New Haven, Friday at 9:30 a.m. with a solemn high Mass of requiem at 10 a.m., in St. Brendan’s Church, New Haven. Interment will be in Mt. St. Peter’s Cemetery, Derby. Friends may call Thursday at the funeral home from 3 to 9 p.m.
A native of Shelton, son of the late Nicholas and Hannah Donovan Larkin, he had been a resident of New Haven about 15 years. He was in business in Derby up until 15 years ago when he removed to New Haven and had been employed as a clerk at the New Haven Clock Company.

"Bill Larkin, Haberdasher, Dies." The Ansonia Sentinel 22 July 1959: 12.

1 William F Larkin b: 14 Oct 1883, d: 22 Jul 1959
... + Anna Brady b: 10 Apr 1883 New Haven, CT, d: 14 Oct 1964 New Haven, CT
......2 William N Larkin b: 9 Feb 1914, d: 15 Apr 1996
...... + Evelyn A Sommers b: 2 Aug 1912 New Haven, CT, d: 27 Oct 1995  CT
.........3 William N Larkin b: 27 May 1943, d: 20 Jan 2005
......... + Georgina Coates b: 10 Apr 1941, d: 15 Jan 1995
.........3 Jeffrey B Larkin

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Wedding Wednesday – 1835 Cork, Ireland

I recently found the church marriage record for my 3x great grandparents.

Thomas Mullane & Judith Sullivan
28 February 1835
Kanturk, County Cork, Ireland
Witnesses: John Sullivan & John Callaghan
Priest: Rev. James Ryan

I was giving a second look at my research for my Mullane ancestors prior to writing something about this branch of my family. I was intending to just edit a chapter I had written. But I could not resist taking just one more look at the research.

Previously, I had found the birth record for my 2x great grandfather, Daniel Mullane [1838 Kanturk, Cork, Ireland – 1930 Clonmel, Tipperary, Ireland]. His parents were shown to be Thomas Mullane & Julia Sullivan.  Two years ago I found two other children for Thomas & Judith/Julia: Ellen b 1836 & Margaret b 1840.

I went to, input County Cork; marriage records; Thomas Mullane. If Ellen b 1836 was their oldest child perhaps they were married the year before. I put in 1835 with a 5 year variance and quickly and found my 3x great grandparents! It’s not supposed to be this easy, is it?

If you are doing any Irish research I strongly suggest you search RootsIreland. And if you’ve been there before, go back for a second look because the database is often updated. I’ve made many terrific discoveries there.

Related Posts:

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Sunday Obituary: Mary Hart O'Reilly Brady Magrath

Former Resident Dies in Brooklyn
Funeral of Mrs. Mary O’Reilly McGrath to Be Held Saturday

Word has been received here of the death of Mrs. Mary O’Reilly Brady McGrath, widow of Nicholas D. McGrath and a former resident of this city, which occurred at her residence, 548 Seventy-sixth street, Brooklyn, yesterday after a short illness. She was the daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. William Brady of this city. The deceased was well known in this city and is survived by four sisters, Mrs. William F. Larkin of Shelton, Mrs. William Halse, Mrs. Milo Chaffee, Miss Helena Brady of Brooklyn, N. Y. and one brother, Eugene H. Brady of New York city. While a resident of this city the deceased resided on Hawkins street.

Funeral services will be held on Satirday morning from the Brooklyn residence with a solemn high Mass of requiem celebrated at Our Lady of Angels church in that city. Interment will be made in Mt. St. Peter’s cemetery this city. Undertaker T. F. Stapleton has charge of the arrangements.

"Former Resident Dies in Brooklyn." The Ansonia Sentinel 10 Apr. 1930: 14.