The Irish Homestead

The McGrath homestead circa 1890. The individual is identified as Dan McGrath.

This is the photo that I’ve been planning on posting for a while.  I waited until now since it is Irish themed and St. Patrick’s day is just a couple of days away.  I got the photo from my fourth cousin once removed back in August.  This is the cousin Matt that provided me with names for my Irish great great great grandparents who came from Ireland during the Great Potato Famine in the 1840s.

Those names are Edward McGrath and Maria Ettadosia Mooney McGrath.  I just love her name.  It has a ring to it.  I like to say, “I’m the great great great grandson of Maria Ettadosia Mooney McGrath” with pride, especially at this time of the year.  I’ve even thought of getting a t-shirt with that printed on it!  Anyway, those names came to me by Matt by way of his great grandmother Madeline McMahon.  She collected and wrote about family history back during her lifetime (1897-1982).  And since her mother was Mary Ann McGrath (McMahon), she wrote about the McGrath family.

If you have been keeping track of our (my) family, you’ll know that my maternal grandfather Fred Bucklin’s paternal grandmother was named Mary Ann McGrath (Bucklin) as well.  Mary Ann Bucklin was the aunt of Mary Ann McMahon.   Mary Ann McMahon’s father was James McGrath, the brother of our Mary Ann Bucklin.  So Madeline had this old photo that came down from her mother.

Back of the photo card.

The photo is of the old McGrath homestead from around 1890 in Ware, Massachusetts.  This is in Palmer County, which is where the McGrath family settled after they immigrated from Ireland.  The family home was on Bacon Road.  I got this information from collected family history and from the writing on the back of the photo.  It doesn’t show a date, but I researched A. W. Howes & Co. and found out that they had a business in Turners Falls from 1888 to 1893.  That’s a pretty narrow window of time, so I just round it off to 1890.

The back of the photo identifies the individual as Dan McGrath.  Edward and Maria had a son named Daniel, but he was born in 1838 (in Ireland) and would have been in his fifties in this photo.  This definitely looks like a younger man.  Mary Ann McMahon had a younger brother named Daniel who was born in 1863.  That seems to be the right age and it’s in the right family line, so I think it is probably the right Daniel.

As you can also read from the back of the card, that old family home has since burned down.  I’m glad I have this photo so I can at least see what the house looked like that my ancestors lived in.  I hope you enjoy the photo as well.  Though I think it will probably be more thoroughly enjoyed by those of us that can say, “My great great great grandmother was Maria Ettadosia Mooney McGrath!”

Erin go bragh!

My mom was Betty Lou Bucklin (Landry), her father was Fred Bucklin, his father was Louis Charles Bucklin, his mother was Mary Ann McGrath. Mary Ann and her siblings and parents immigrated from Ireland during the Great Potato Famine of the 1840s.

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