Tuesday, 3 August 2010

The Fitzhenry families buried in the St Abban's graveyard

Yesterday we met Laurence and Johanna Fitzhenry, whose schoolmaster son Patrick married Margaret Hayes, the principle teacher at the local girls' school.

Patrick and Margaret had four children mentioned on their tombstone.
Three died young (James, Laurence and Bridget), but Mary Anne survived a childhood when she was made an orphan at an early age.
We know she was married to a man called Robert Shortall and had at least one son John Joseph.

Finding them in the 1901 and 1911 censuses was not easy, but I did find another daughter of Patrick and Margaret.

Mary Anne and Robert lived past the 1901 census, but I can't find a reliable entry for either of them. However, John Joseph was living with his aunt and her husband back in Knockroe where Patrick originated from. Even more mysteriously, there was an older Johanna Fitzhenry, a "sister" of the head of the household John Kelly.

1901 Residents of a house 6 in Knockroe (Whitemoor, Wexford)
All are Roman Catholic and all are born in County Wexford.
Kelly John 46 Male Head of Family Farmer
Read write Married
Kelly Johanna 40 Female Wife House Keeper
Read write Married
Fitzhenry Johanna 70 Female Sister House Keeper
Read write Not Married
Shortall John Joe 13 Male Nephew Scholar
Read write Not Married
Sullivan Martin 24 Male Farm Servant
Read write Not Married
Malone John 30 Male Farm Servant
Cannot read Not Married
I believe that Johanna Kelly is another daughter of Patrick and Margaret Fitzhenry, and the census gives a birthdate of around 1857, 2 years before Margaret died. Who raised Margaret's children. was it the elder Johanna Fitzhenry?
John Joseph Shortall is living with his mother's sister, but why? Mary Anne didn't die for another 4 years. Where were Mary Anne and Robert in the meantime?

The older Johanna's status as a "sister" to John Kelly is made clearer in the 1911 census when she is revealed as his aunt-in-law and therefore the sister of Johanna's mother.
The Kelly family are still living in Knockroe, but at number 13 this time. Whether they had actually moved, or there were now other houses built along the road in the meantime is unclear. John Joseph Shortall died in 1905 and so is absent from this census.

1911 Residents of a house 13 in Knockroe (Whitemore, Wexford)
Again all are Roman Catholics and born in County Wexford.
Kelly John 58 Male Head of Family Farmer
Read and write Married
Kelly Johanna 54 Female Wife
Read and write Married 13 years, no children
Fitzhenery Johanna 80 Female Aunt in Law
Read and write Single
Whitty Thomas 27 Male Servant Farm Servant
Read and write Single
The Johanna Fitzhenry is the one on the tombstone who died in December 1911. She was Laurence and Johanna's daughter and Patrick's sister. Again it shows that the family did not move far from Knockroe.

I also looked for Mary Fitzhenry (1818-1891) who married a Mr Wadden. I knew that she hadn't survived to the 1901 census, but it seems that either he hadn't survived to the 1901 census too, or had emigrated from Ireland. However, there were still Wadden/ Waden/Wadin families around the Knockroe area, so I expect that she hadn't travelled that far.

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