1941 letter, Gaillimh, Co. Galway, to Glen Ridge, NJ1
In 1941, Mrs. Felix Tarsney of Glen Ridge, New Jersey, received a letter from Gaillimh (Galway City), County Galway, Ireland. What can we learn about Mrs Tarsney? Was she from Galway?
Compared to some other postal covers I have looked at, this family was relatively easy and well documented. There were also a few family trees at MyHeritage.com, and I think at ancestry.com as well. So I will just summarize what I found and maybe include a few things I didn't see on the trees at MyHeritage.
On September 17, 1911, Barbara Tarsney and her sister Delia (Bridget) Devestern arrived on the SS Lusitania. Barbara was headed to 40 Newell St. Their last place of residence had been Moycullen, Ireland.4
There is a record of a marriage of Felix Tarsney to Barbara Hynes in Brooklyn, NY, on June 28 1908.5 Various trees on line had identfied Moycullen as Barbara (Hynes) Tarsney's place of birth. So it was no surprise to find that the Residents of house 31 in Ower (Wormhole, Galway) on the 1901 Census of Ireland included a Barbara and Bridget Hynes, with their parents Lawrence and Mary, and a number of siblings.6
What I didn't find on any of the family trees was the arrival of Barbara Hynes in 1905, the year in which she usually said she had immigrated. This was probably because the index at familysearch.org, libertyfoundation.org, etc., had the right ship but the wrong date. By starting at stevemorse.org and searching for the ship I found that Barbara had indeed arrived on the SS Oceanic, but on April 6, 1905, not April 5. She was age 20, a housemaid from Galway, and was headed to her uncle Frank Hynes' home at 179 Java St, Greenpoint, Brooklyn, NY. She said she had been in the US before, in 1899. I didn't find that voyage.7
SS Oceanic, April 6, 1905, manifest - Barbara Hynes
So yes, Barbara (Hynes) Tarsney, the addressee of the envelope, was from Galway.
Felix's family was a little more difficult, but interesting. When he registered for the World War II draft in East Orange, NJ, Felix said he was born in County Monaghan. His brother Charles, when registering, said he was born in County Louth.8 His sister Norah, when she arrived May 29, 1909, on the SS Campania, said she was born in Carrickfergus, Monaghan.9
A tree at ancestry.com,10 said that Felix' father James, who died in Brooklyn in 1911, had been born in County Armagh on 22 Nov 1854 to Arthur McAtarsney. There was an Arthur McAtarsney on Griffith's Valuation of Armagh the in parish of Loughgall and the townland of Annaghmore. 11 And in 1901 there was a Felix McAtarsney, 54, in Annaboe, Kilmore, Armagh, who looks like a relative. Annaboe is an 11 minute drive from Annaghmore.12 So evidently, Felix' family was originally from Armagh and when his father James left home to find work he went to Louth for a while, then to Monaghan, before emigrating to Brooklyn.
Combing through familysearch, findagrave.com, the Ellis Island records, etc., I found these siblings of Felix: Mary, Charles, (Felix), Catherine, Norah, Lucy, Agnes, and James. He had three half-brothers: Peter, John, and Frank.
There is more information about the Hines and Tarsneys in the Family Trees > Other Families section of this site.
©Ed Hamilton January 13, 2018
^1. The image of the envelope to Mrs. Felix Tarsney is used by permission of the Jim Forte Postal History site and can be found on this page of the site, unless it has been sold. I am not connected with the site.
^2. "United States Census, 1940," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:K45Y-4FM : accessed 1 January 2018), Felix A Tarsney, Glen Ridge Borough, Essex, New Jersey, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 7-156, sheet 3A, line 3, family 43, Sixteenth Census of the United States, 1940, NARA digital publication T627. Records of the Bureau of the Census, 1790 - 2007, RG 29. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2012, roll 2333.
^3. "United States Census, 1910," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MRQW-GHH : accessed 31 December 2017), Felix Torsney, Brooklyn Ward 17, Kings, New York, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 392, sheet 22A, family 365, NARA microfilm publication T624 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1982), roll 966; FHL microfilm 1,374,979.
^4. Ellis Island Records. Start at www.stevemorse.org.
^5. NYC Grooms, Brooklyn, at http://www.italiangen.org.
^6. 1901 Census of Ireland, house 31 in Ower (Wormhole, Galway), at http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie.
^7. Ellis Island Records. Start at www.stevemorse.org.
^8. World War II Draft Registrations.
^9. Ellis Island Records. Start at www.stevemorse.org.
^11. Griffith's Valuation, at askaboutireland.ie.
^12. 1901 Census of Ireland, house 13 in Annaboe (Kilmore, Armagh), at http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie.
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