12 October 2014

Census Sunday: Tracking down Dennis O'Flaherty

Dennis O'Flaherty was born in Ireland around 1839. He immigrated to America however nothing is known of his parents or birthplace. Once here he settled in Phoenixville and, at some point before 1868, married Martha Durkin, said to be from County Mayo in Ireland. Tracing them through the Census Records offers a little insight into the family.

Dennis and Martha had eight children. In March 1868 Martha gave birth to twins: James and Mary. A son Hugh was born in 1869.

The 1870 Census
The 1870 Census shows only Mary and Hugh with their parents. Hence, James passed before 16 July 1880 (the day the census was taken). Martha's name is listed as Hattie, which would simply be a nickname. Dennis worked in the Rolling Mill. A laborer named Patrick Hannigan lived with them as well. The census confirmed that both Dennis and Martha were born in Ireland. It also revealed that neither of them could write and that Martha could not read!

The 1880 Census
Dennis is working at the Iron Works and Martha remains "keeping house." By 1880, Dennis and Martha have six children living with them. Mary is now 12 and Hugh is now 11. In addition, Michael is eight; Dennis is seven; Maggie is three and Martha is one.

I have not been able to locate the O'Flaherty family in either the 1890 or the 1900 census. My great grandmother, Catherine O'Flaherty, was born after the 1880 census. The next time I find Martha is as a widow in the 1902 Phoenixville City Directory.

Census Sunday is a daily genealogy prompt promoted by GeneaBloggers in which one reviews state and federal census records.

Locations listed are located in Pennsylvania (USA), unless otherwise noted in post.