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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Family Gatherings - 1973

Maura & Williams Wedding

Over the years many of the Madden family gatherings have centered around weddings. When Maura and William were married in 1973, the family numbered twelve....the original eight, two son in laws and the just turned two twin cousins so elegantly dressed in clothes lovingly made by doting grandmas. 

Maura and William were married at the Cenacle, outside under the trees, only the second, and the last wedding on the grounds.  We Maddens were definitely privileged to have had that opportunity. 
The Cenacle - Carmichael CA

This the first of the weddings after the family spread to separate states.  Unfortunately some of us missed the next two weddings, that of Tim and Denise in 1975 and Colleen and Bill in 1976.  Small children, bad schedules, high travel costs and limited budgets made travel difficult, but we were there in Spirit!  

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Michael Murphy: An exploration of possibilities

There is one in every research project, the man with the common name who disappears in the records.
In the Madden genealogy that man is Michael Murphy. Michael was supposedly born in Ireland to James Murphy and Mary Brien about 1833.

No record of that birth has been found.  One possibility is a christening record for Michael Murphy, the son of Edanus Murphy and Mary Brien. He was born 21 Apr 1833 and christened the next day in the parish of Ballycullane (Tinturn), Wexford.  This is in the diocese of Ferns.

Edanus is considered a latin form of Aidan, a diminutive form of Aodh.  The name means "fire" and is sometimes anglicized as Hugh ... not James.

Could it be the right record?  Michael Murphy is such a common name, but it is the right year and the right mother.

Another possibility is Michael Murphy the son of Cons Murphy and Mary Brien baptised 29 Dec 1833 in Rosnacaharach, Muintervarra, Cork.

There are others, but I have not found one with James Murphy and Mary Brien and birth dates get further from an age of 28 which he gave when he  married..  In fact the only mention of his parents names is the marriage record of Michael and Bridget.  

I have not been able to find the family of Michael in Canada.  I believe I have found him as a servant age 25 in the 1861 census in Stratford, but with no other names to check,  this it might not be him. The record of his marriage just a few weeks later says that he lives in Stratford.  The census would put his birth in 1835/6 but 25 is one of those nice round ages that an employer might give. Like many Irish his age is inconsistent in nearly every record. 

It is my hope that some record might miraculously appear and give a few more clues.

Máedóc of Ferns

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Family Gatherings - 1972

25th Anniversary

In Spring of 1971 just s months after the marriages of Colleen and Cath, the Madden family moved to Washington.  Jim had accepted a transfer to the Surface Effects Ship division of Aerojet.  After a short stint in a motel, they found a great house in Gig Harbor.

They left Maura and Cath in California and Colleen was living in Corvalis, Oregon.

Just one year later the the first "Family Gathering" took place.  A surprise for the 25th anniversary of Jim and Jean.  Colleen did much of the planning for the event, which included dinner out and then a party waiting at home.  

Maura, William, Cath, Greg and not quite one year old Jessica piled into Maura's Datsun for the journey north from San Francisco.  Along the way we swung through Corvalis to add Colleen and not quite one year old Erich to the pile.  

We arrived just in time to leave for dinner.  We left Erich and Jessica with newly turned twelve year old Patrick.  I'm not sure what we were thinking, two crawling messy infants with a kid who had never had a younger sibling!!!  He was slow to forgive us and for years swore he would never have a child.

It was a short visit, everyone had to get back for work, but thankfully we took time for this picture, the last with all eight of us.  

...there must be other pictures of that weekend, but his is all I  found in my albums, or the Madden negative collection.  

Wednesday, September 7, 2016


Mocklershill, home of the Dunn family in the 1820-30s, lies in the center of the Golden Vale.  It is 424.87 acres (.66 sq mi) in size and is in the  the civil parish of Magorban and the barony of Middlethird in County Tipperary.

by Sieghean

The Golden Vale ( Machaire méith na Mumhan), an area of rolling pastureland covering parts of three counties, Limerick, Tipperary, and Cork is the best land in Ireland for dairy farming.  At times it has been called the Golden Vein as evidenced by a mention in the 1837 book by Johathan Binns where he states that "the golden vale" (more correctly the "golden vein")"  "The land is of excellent quality, being part of the golden vein of Ireland—a district reaching from Tipperary towards Limerick. The extent of the golden vein is about fourteen miles long, by six or seven wide." 
Wikipedia "Golden Vale"
Ask About Ireland - Golden Vale

MOGORBANE, a parish, in the barony of MIDDLETHIRD, county of TIPPERARY, and province of MUNSTER, 5 miles (E.) from Cashel, on the road from Clonmel to Thurles and Nenagh ; containing 1282 inhabitants. It comprises 6522 statute acres, as applotted under the tithe act, and contains an abundance of limestone. The principal seats are Mobarnan Manor, the handsome and well-planted demesne of M. Jacob, Esq. ; Beechmount, the residence of T. G. Phillips, Esq. ; and Silverfort, of J. Scully, Esq. It is a perpetual curacy, in the diocese of Cashel, and in the gift of the Archbishop, to whose mensal the rectory is appropriate. The tithes, amounting to #230, are entirely payable to the archbishop, who allows a stipend to the curate: there is a glebe-house. The church is a neat Gothic structure, built about 20 years since, In the R. C. divisions the parish forms part of the union or district of Killenaule, and has a chapel at Moyglass, In the parochial school, built on an acre of ground given by S. Jacob, Esq., who also contributed #40 towards its erection, about 40 children are educated ; and there are two private schools, containing about 170 children. Some remains of Mobarnan and Ballyvaiden castles still exist ; and there are several ancient forts... Samuel Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of Ireland 1837

National Archives of Ireland 004625697/004625697_00070
The Tithe Allotments were taken in Mocklershill in 1830.  There are fourteen households listed in the tax rolls, including John and Cornelius Dunn

When Griffith's valuations were taken in the 1850s there were about 20 families living in the townland, including British landlord, Sir John Fitzgerald, owner in fee of the entire townland.  There was no Dunn family, but Edward Lonergan leased a house and garden from Michael Slattery.

In 1901 there were 39 people living in nine households. Families names include Bowes, Connell, McNamara, Browne, Roche, Luby, Egan, Dea, and Prendergast.  In 1911 the number had dwindled to 33.

Mocklershill is in the Catholic Parish of Killenaule.  The available  parish registers start as early as 1742 for baptisms and 1812 for marriages.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Best of Show

For the second year in a row one of Maura's paintings has been named Best of Show in the Wash Open Show at the Sacramento Fine Arts Center!!!!  The competition was tough as you can see from the Gallery of Award Winners. 

Maura was surprised at the win, but those of us who are her "biggest fans" just say finally everyone is noticing her wonderful work.  She has added more pictures to her blog, check it out.