Archiver > IRISH-IN-CHICAGO > 2007-02 > 1170348969

From: Sharon Coryell <>
Subject: Re: [IRISH-IN-CHICAGO] A Quandry
Date: Thu, 1 Feb 2007 08:56:09 -0800 (PST)
In-Reply-To: <>


I can understand the frustration. I'm still trying to figure out where my Agnes Bell entered the US, too. I had checked entry points into the US using passenger lists, to no avail. But I took an Irish genealogy class, which is where I learned about the entry through Canada. The instructor indicated that it was cheaper to enter via Canada and then cross into the US by water or over land, and my Agnes, like most Irish, was poor. Since I found her in Wisconsin in the 1880 census, I looked at maps to see the various routes to Wisconsin and then how she would have traveled from there to Chicago. Still all speculation on my part, but it's the best I can come up with right now, and I'm trying to find a passenger list from Ireland to Canada for her. Until the 1890's when there are Canadian records of crossings into the US, that part is pretty difficult to sort out. If anyone knows of other record sources to look at, I'm all ears. Agnes has certainly proved to be my
brick wall (or at least one of them).

wrote: Sharon in CA wrote


I have been trying to no avail to find how my MCDERMOTTs and MORRISSEYs/LEDWELLs arrived. I was told that, as you stated, they went from Liverpool to Canada and then crossed over, but how? The MCDERMOTTs came from Liverpool (I think as they lived in Haslingden, Lancashire, England at the time).

The MORRISSEYs came from Newfoundland. I find Elizabeth (my 2 x great grandmother) and Ella (my great grandaunt) in the 1870 census in Chicago living with her sister, Johanna Dooley. My great grandmother, Hannah MORRISSEY, I can only surmise was left in Newfoundland, since she was not in the census.

Elizabeth married John MORRISSEY in ~1860. They had 2 daughters. John, according to family lore, died at sea in ~1870. Elizabeth remarried Patrick LEDWELL. Evidence (i.e., the census) suggests that they were not married in Newfoundland. A search of the cyberdrive site was to no avail also. However, there is a Patrick Cotter and Elizabeth Morrissey married in 1882. I'm not sure it is them. In the 1880 census, Patrick is there with Elizabeth, Ella, Hannah, and 4 of their children. They had 2 more after the census was taken. Patrick is not in the 1870 census.

I have checked the Castle Garden site for the MCDERMOTTs to no avail. I have checked the ancestry site during their free period for the MCDERMOTTs and the MORRISSEYs/LEDWELLs, also to no avail. If they crossed the border, why isn't there any record. Were they illegals? This is a quandry.

Bill Karr in Peoria, IL., USA

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