Archiver > BRETHREN > 2005-03 > 1111000349

From: Wanda Barrett <>
Subject: Re: [BRE] The Irish and the Dunker...
Date: Wed, 16 Mar 2005 11:12:29 -0800 (PST)
In-Reply-To: 6667


As for Irish back in the early and mid-1800s being Irish, don't you think that it probably was true then as now, that the husband often chose to attend the church of his wife's persuasion -- regaradless of ethnic origin or even the church he was brought up in?

Having done extensive genealogical research on my Irish g-g-grandparents who arrived in Western PA in 1828 (if not before), I find that my g-g-grandmother was a member of the Presbyterian church in the area; her husband appeared to have been a member of the Baptist church closer their home, where one of their daughters and husband became leaders and he Sunday school superintendent. (The church was established as a Welsh congregation.) They had three sons -- two chose the local Dunkard assemby, the one having married the daughter of the man who donated the property to build the church (Brallier), and the third son (my g-grandparaents married the daughter of one of the brothers who established the Methodist chapel close their property; my g-grandparents moved to that vicinity. (It was at this church that my grandparents met -- she was of German descent.)

It appears that the 2nd generation spoke both English and Gaelic, but my grandfather and his siblings all said on the Census that they spoke "Irish" at home. It seems, too, that even the 1st generation to move here learned English. It appears that unlike today, immigrants must have been assimilated more rapidly into the community; they saw it necessary to learn English in order to communicate with one another, as it would have been mandatory to make a living, wouldn't it?

Another reason I can think of for Irish (or any ethnic group) to attend the Brethren church is that in some communities in Western Pennsylvania, they were the ONLY church available. (I speak from experience.)



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