Friday, April 15, 2016

Bridget in Passenger List

This post is in answer to a question in the comments section from the last post about Bridget in the passenger list.  Since I belatedly found a baptismal record for Ellen (see Extra!  Extra!) the question was whether there could also be a baptismal record for Bridget whose parents were our Hannah and Timothy Browne.  There do seem to be some additional gaps between children.  I had originally posted this in  response to the question in the Comments section, but, think it more appropriate to include it as a regular post.

I have wondered the same thing myself.  Let me start by re-capping the children and their baptismal dates.  The oldest child of Hannah and Timothy Browne, Patrick, was baptized Nov 1830.  He was followed by David (Oct 1832), John (Jan 1835), Maria (May 1837), Ellen (Jul 1839), Johanna (Sep 1841), and Thomas (May 1847).  There was no record for James, about 1845.  We do know that is a pretty good estimate for James based on US records.  That leaves two gaps - 36 months between David and John, and about four years between Johanna and James where there may have been an unknown child; perhaps a child that did not survive.  I had looked for baptismal records from 1841 to 1846 because I particularly wanted to find a baptismal record for James.  I did not find James or any other children born to Hannah and Timothy Browne in Patrickswell.  I also checked Croom and Adare since those are the two parishes closest to Fanningstown and Patrickswell.  I have not done line by line research farther afield, but, I have queried the Find My Past database for Catholic church records and have not come across anything.

Based on the passenger list, the 36 month period between David and John seems to be the questionable period.  That would be between October 1832 and January 1835 - most likely between June 1833 and May 1834, allowing time for an additional pregnancy and possible misstatement of ages in the passenger list.  Bridget and Mary may have been switched in the passenger list and either could have a birth year of 1832, 1836, 1837, or somewhere in between.  Again, I searched through baptismal records for Patrickswell, Croom and Adare (and searched the online databases).  I did not find any additional children of Hannah and Timothy.  However, besides Bridget, 1832, daughter of Helen Kelly and Thomas Browne, there is another family in the parish where the father is Timothy Browne.

I discovered this family when I was in Dublin a few years ago.  The family consists of Timothy Browne and his wife, Catharina White, married 18 Feb 1832 in Patrickswell.  I knew about some of the children then, but have now learned they had eight children born between 1833 and 1848.  One of their children MAY be the other child on the ship with Hannah and her seven children.  Maria was baptized 24 Jan 1834; Bridget was baptized 6 Feb 1836.  Either of these girls could have been on the John Murray.  I have often wondered if this is one of the other Timothys in Griffith's Valuation - most likely Patrick #2, the blacksmith in Castleroberts.  (See the post on Finding a Townland.  He is the one that was in the Revision lists until 1878 when his son, Patrick, took over the business.  The oldest son of Timothy and Catharina, by the way, is Patrick, baptized Apr 1833 who, I believe, died around 1890 in Croom.)  As you recall, Castleroberts (Adare) is the townland adjoining Fanningstown to the west, just outside of the Patrickswell Catholic parish limits - at least the boundaries as they exist today.  I do know there was NOT another Timothy within Fanningstown or the surrounding areas beyond those identified in the previous post, yet, all of the children of Timothy and Catharina were baptized in Patrickswell.  (I did check the baptismal records for Adare and there are no records there.)

I think this family has to be related, somehow, to our Browne family, but, do not know how.  The church records just do not go back far enough to find baptismal records for the two Timothys.  With both of them having children in Patrickswell during the same time frame, could this be the reason our Timothy was called Thady?

It seems the more we find out, the more questions we have!


  1. Perhaps that 36 month gap between David and John was filled by a stillborn child,not recorded because not baptized. Or perhaps a child was born that was not found in the baptismal records as James was not, but who died before they left Ireland. We may never know the answer in this life anyway.

    1. All of that could be very true, and, as you say, we will probably never know.

    2. I myself do believe in a life hereafter. And I believe then we will know our families and all the answers we struggled so hard to find. That will be a wonderful day.

    3. I do firmly believe in life in the hereafter, and that there we will know and associate with our family. Then all our questions, that we struggled so hard to find, will be answered!That will be wonderful.

  2. Just as a clarification to this post --

    The question was about whether or not Bridget could have been a child of Timothy Browne and Hannah Kelly born in the gap between David and John. Footnote 3 in the previous post on Arriving in America addressed whether or not a baptismal record for a possible Bridget could be found. I did find a baptismal record for Bridigam Browne at Patrickswell RC church for 29 Jun 1832. She is the daughter of John Browne and Helen Kelly, likely siblings of our Timothy Browne and Hannah Kelly. As stated in the footnote noted above, it was not unusual for extended family members to travel together with the idea of earning enough money in America to assist in the immigration of the rest of the family. This Bridget would have correctly been age 16 at the time of sailing and would not have had difficulty finding a job. Irish maids in wealthy Boston family homes were in high demand during this era.