Lucey Memorial Day OBrien

In Memoriam – John J Schlenker

The USS Block Island, part of a hunter-killer group of escort carriers providing cover for convoys moving across the mid-Atlantic, is north-west of the Canary Islands on 29 May 1944. On board were 957 crew, including my grandfathers first cousin John J Schlenker. At 20:13, German U-boat U549 slipped through the screen and fired four torpedoes, three hit the Block Island. John and five other men were killed in the attack.

USS Block Island in Oct 1943. By US Navy Employee - U.S. National Archives photo #80-G-87149., Public Domain,
USS Block Island in Oct 1943

John was the son of John Joseph Schlenker and Bernice O’Brien. He enlisted just before his 37th birthday in September 1943. John worked as a shipping clerk at the Gonic Manufacturing Company, a woolen mill in Rochester, NH and was married to Myrtle Lamprey. They had no children.

John and my great uncle Gerald were groomsmen in John's sister Mary's wedding on 28 Apr 1932.
John and my great uncle Gerald were groomsmen in John’s sister Mary’s wedding on 28 Apr 1932.

It’s Memorial Day and John is the only person I’m aware of in my tree that died in service after the Civil War. I’d written about the Bowen family in the Civil War before here and here, so I thought I’d remember John and say thank you to him and all the men and women that have paid the ultimate price fighting for our country.


Sources: U.S. Navy Cruise Books, 1918-2009 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc, 2011.
Original data: United States Navy. Various U.S. Navy Cruise Books. Navy Department Library, Washington, D.C.

Block Island Photo By US Navy Employee – U.S. National Archives photo #80-G-87149., Public Domain,

Ireland Lucey Walsh

The House at 7 Harbour Hill

The only place I’ve ever seen a street address on a headstone is Cobh. Quite a few of them had an address, perhaps this is common in Ireland? On one particular stone, it was the same address mentioned in the 1923 obituary of my 3rd great-grand aunt Anne Mann

“Widow of John Mann, Carpenter. Chronic Nephritis. Daughter Mary E Mann present at death. 7 Harbour Hill”

This was a new address, Anne had lived at 36 Harbour Row in most of the records I’d seen. When we visited Cobh in February, one item on the to do list was to try to find graves for any Mann, Lucey or Walsh family members. There is no map or burial listing for St. Colman’s Cemetery, so we walked the rows looking for familiar surnames. I did the genealogy happy dance when I found this one (in my mind of course, I don’t dance and I was in the middle of a graveyard).

Mann headstone, St. Colman's Cemetery, Cobh, Ireland
Mann headstone, St. Colman’s Cemetery, Cobh, Ireland

Mary Ellen is the daughter of Anne mentioned in the obituary. Elizabeth is another daughter and pretty much my favorite person in the Mann family. She traveled back and forth from Cobh to America and lived with the Lucey’s in Haverhill and Groveland Massachusetts and left a wonderful paper trail. She is the reason I know that there was still family in Ireland! I didn’t know that she married (Fred Fryer in 1922) or that she had come back to Cobh after Fred died.

Who are Yvonne Wallace and Kate Buckley? What’s the connection to 7 Harbour Hill? We left the cemetery and walked back to town, passing by Harbour Hill to get a look at the house. Above the window is a painted sign that says “Buckley.”

7 Harbour Hill, Cobh, Ireland
7 Harbour Hill, Cobh, Ireland. There is nothing like the evening sun in Cobh, just beautiful.

With these clues, additional research uncovered that Mary Ellen and Elizabeth’s sister Anne married Thomas Buckley in 1910. They were living at this address in the 1911 census. Thomas was a house painter, his father was a builder and the sign above the window was an advertisement for the family businesses. Apparently sometime after 1911 Anne’s mother and sister moved in with them at 7 Harbour Hill.

Kate Buckley was Anne and Thomas’ daughter, she was a nun at the Carmelite Convent and died at the Bon Secours Home in Cork. Thomas and Anne had several other children according to some unconfirmed information, still working on that. I think one of the children still has living descendants in Ireland, potential distant cousins!

Yvonne Wallace was the infant daughter of the folks that lived at 5 Harbour Hill, not related as far as I’ve been able to find.

Thanks to Cork-based genealogist Margaret Jordan for her help locating obituaries and vital records to document these connections. I highly recommend her services and look forward to working with her again. More to come on the other discoveries she helped me make…

Cemetery Ireland Lucey Walsh

Ireland Trip – Templerobin Cemetery, Cobh

In February we visited Ireland for the second time. In 2002 we went with the kids, this time it was just Sue and I. In the 13 years between trips, I’ve learned a lot about who my Irish ancestors were and where they were from, but there are always more mysteries. James Lucey and Mary Walsh were married in Cobh in 1841 and they had five children there, including my 2nd great-grandfather James, before leaving for America in 1853.

I have a million things to write about the family in Cobh. I learned so much over the past six months about them thanks to Margaret Jordan, a Cork-based genealogist that Sue hired for me as a Christmas present (Best. Present. Ever!) as well as visiting and walking the graveyards there.

More to come on what I found out, but I wanted to share some photos of the Templerobin Cemetery in the Ballymore section of Cobh. This cemetery is where my Walsh ancestors are interred, possibly some Lucey’s as well. We met with local David Verling who showed us around the cemetery. David is part of a community group that took ownership/responsibility for the cemetery after it had been left derelict for many years. His group has done an amazing job cleaning up the overgrowth and documenting any readable headstones. Not much is left in the way of records, so the efforts of preservation here were needed badly. I do have a copy of the transcriptions and I’m happy to do lookups, just email me (contact info on the About page). I eventually hope to digitize the data and make it public, with the permission of those that created it of course.

So, here are some of the photos, all photos copyright me, if you want to use one just ask.

IMG_1489 IMG_1488 IMG_1487 IMG_1486 IMG_1485 IMG_1484 IMG_1482 IMG_1481 IMG_1479 IMG_1478 IMG_1474 IMG_1472 IMG_1471 IMG_1470 IMG_1468 IMG_1464 IMG_1463

Me and David Verling at the  Cobh Heritage Center
Me and David Verling at the Cobh Heritage Center


52Ancestors Lucey

A Lucey crosses the NC State stage, 80 years in the making


On Saturday May 9th my son will graduate from North Carolina State University, the first Lucey in our direct line to receive a bachelor’s degree. We had no idea when he first enrolled, but this was not the first time a Lucey attended the university. In 1935 David Joseph Lucey travelled from Dover, New Hampshire to play football and pursue a degree at what was then North Carolina State College.

1461844_10153575373615582_1222592211_n copy 2

Dave made a splash at NC State, scoring the first touchdown of the season (against Wake Forest) for the freshman football team, but he would play just the one year. His mother became ill and he moved back to New England to help her, enrolling at Boston College and playing there for the next few years. His 1939 BC team went to the Cotton Bowl, where they lost a defensive battle to Clemson 6-3.

NC State Freshman football team 1935-36.  Source: NCSU Library

He graduated BC (where his son and grandson would also attend) with a Bachelors in Education and later went on to coach the Saugus High School and Boston College football teams. He was also the Registrar of Motor Vehicles for Massachusetts in the early 70’s.

“Big Dave”, as he was known to me, was my 1st cousin 2x removed and a wonderful guy. Dave died in 1997 when John was very young, but they did meet several times. I think he would have been quite pleased with this coincidence.

David J Lucey, 1936 and John Lucey, 2014, flanked by friends.
Well-dressed David J Lucey, 1936 and John Lucey, 2014, flanked by friends at NC State.

Congrats John, we are so proud of you!


Team Photo. NCSU Libraries Rare & Unique Digital Collections. 1936 Agromeck Yearbook. (Accessed 30 Apr 2015)

Other photos used courtesy of David J Lucey III, grandson of David.






DNA Lucey

Lucey – Ireland DNA Project

I’m very excited to announce the creation of the Lucey – Ireland Y-DNA surname project at Family Tree DNA.

The project uses Y-DNA test results to find matches between participants with the goal of encouraging the use of genetic genealogy to prove relationships and hopefully determining the townland of origin in Ireland of the various Lucey families.

Any male Lucey worldwide is invited to join.

Y-DNA follows the paternal line, so usually aligns with the surname which allows us to compare the various Lucey families to each other. If you are unfamiliar with Y-DNA and/or Family Tree DNA, I’d highly recommend reading Y-DNA basics and viewing the Introduction to Family Tree DNA webinar.

If you are a male Lucey or know one, please share the project details with them and contact me with any questions at luceydnaproject at

52Ancestors Civil War Lucey

52 Ancestors #37: James Lucey and the Battle of Wyse Fork

IMG_0934In late 1864 into early 1865, the 2nd Massachusetts Heavy Artillery was stationed in New Bern, NC on garrison duty. Company M included 16-year-old James Lucey, my 2nd great-grandfather.

Luther Webber Gravestone
New Bern National Cemetery

In the fall of 1864 there was an outbreak of yellow fever in New Bern. An epidemic which took the lives of many, including 23-year-old fellow private and Worcester, MA native Luther Webber.

Early in 1865, the 2nd Mass Heavy Artillery was called upon to join General Jacob Cox’s Provisional Corps that were to move towards Goldsboro, ultimately to join with Sherman’s army. Just south of Kinston, near Southwest Creek, they ran into Confederate forces under the command of Gen. Braxton Bragg.

Bragg’s men attacked the Union flanks and captured an entire regiment, the last mass capture of Union troops in the war. However, miscommunication allowed the Union army time for reinforcements to arrive and fortify its position. Bragg was forced to withdraw, thanks in no small part to the heavy artillery units that repelled the rebel attack.

In the span of three days, there were a total of 2,601 injured and killed, including several of James’ compatriots in Company M. Most are buried at the New Bern National Cemetery.

My wife and I recently had the opportunity to visit Kinston and New Bern, including the Wyse Fork Battlefield and the New Bern National Cemetery. We were celebrating our 23rd wedding anniversary and continuing our tradition of visiting either a cemetery or a battlefield on our weekend away.

While Company M may have been involved in various skirmishes over the course of the war, the only documented battle is Wyse Fork. It’s always an exciting experience to walk where your ancestor walked but it’s surreal to visit a battlefield where your 16-year-old ancestor fought.

Today (1 October 2014) would be his 166th birthday.

In the New Bern National Cemetery, there are hundreds of Civil War era graves and several monuments, including one to honor the Massachusetts soldiers.

IMG_0932 IMG_0963

This post is 37th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Lucey

52 Ancestors #36: Vincent Lucey

100 years ago today, my grandfather Vincent John Lucey was born in Rochester, New Hampshire, the fifth child of James and Mary (O’Brien) Lucey. He spent the first few weeks of his life in a makeshift incubator, a shoebox on a radiator, due to his size. He didn’t get much bigger, as an adult he was only 5’5″ tall.

Vinny circa 1917, York Beach Maine

He attended Rochester High School and played on the football team, graduated in 1932.

Rochester High Football, 1931-32. Vinny on the far left, front row
Rochester High Football, 1931-32. Vinny on the far left, front row


High School picture
High School picture, 1930-32

On 28 November, 1936, Vinny married Doris Bowen, whom he met a year or so before while working at Winkley’s Market, a local grocer.

Circa 1936
Circa 1936

They had two children in Rochester and lived there until the mid-40’s, when they moved to 28 Bridge St in Saugus, Massachusetts. He worked for Gibbs Oil as a driver and yard foreman for many years. I used to get Hess Trucks every year for Christmas, one of my favorite toys.

Scanned Photo-8-1_edited
An avid fisherman, Vinny owned a boat that he kept in the Saugus River for quick access to the Atlantic

He and my grandmother traveled extensively around New England and eastern Canada, as evidenced by a tremendous swizzle-stick collection that I’m proud to own.

Vinny about to enjoy a Canadian Club after a very long drive to some random hotel in New England
Vinny about to enjoy a Canadian Club and soda after a very long drive to some random, beautifully decorated hotel in New England

In 1976, my family celebrated Vinny’s 62nd birthday at his house, he had been ill and was about to retire and I’m sure was looking forward to spending time fishing and traveling. When we walked into our house after the short ride home, the phone was ringing. It was my grandmother, Vinny had collapsed. He was rushed to the hospital but never regained consciousness.

This post is 36th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Civil War Lucey

52 Ancestors #35: G.A.R. Member James Lucey

My 3rd great-grandfather James E. Lucey was very proud of his Civil War service. He joined the Grand Army of the Republic in Rochester, NH and participated in parades and other events, such as the one captured in this photo. The only details on the picture are “Rochester Common, G.A.R. 1928, Jim Lucey”

1928 Rochester Commons, Rochester NH G.A.R. Ceremony. James Lucey on the far right
1928 Rochester Commons, Rochester NH G.A.R. Ceremony. James Lucey on the far right

For more information about the Grand Army of the Republic, visit the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War website

This post is 35th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Lucey

52 Ancestors #34: Anna (Lucey) Stevens

This is one of my favorite family pictures because it reminds me of early fall, the grass is long and it’s ‘sweater weather’, my favorite time of year.

The three women in this picture are my great-grand aunts, sisters of my great-grandfather James Edward Lucey: Agnes, Anna and Margaret.

circa 1910
circa 1910, probably at the Lucey house 66 Church St, Gonic, NH

Anna Theresa Lucey was born 7 July 1883 in Rochester, NH to James and Johanna (Donoghue) Lucey, the fifth child and second daughter. She married Percy Wilder Stevens in 1923. They had one son, Robert, later in 1923 and lived at 57 Silver St in Dover, NH until Percy’s untimely death. He had a pulmonary embolism and died on 20 March 1937 at age 48.

Anna and Bobby moved into the Lucey house in Gonic and she worked as a bookkeeper at Kendall Insurance in Rochester. A cousin remembers her as a devout Catholic; coming home from work on the bus, having a small meal and going up to her room to pray for the evening. She never remarried and lived in Gonic until she died 16 November 1972 at age 89.

This post is 34th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Donoghue Ireland Lucey

52 Ancestors #29: Patrick J O’Donoghue

In the late 90’s we visited my great-aunt Betty (Lucey) Bedard and her family in Toronto. She knew I was interested in family history and she had a number of old family photos and documents to share, she gave me some, others I photocopied (no cell cameras at the time). One of my favorite photos she gave me was of Patrick Joseph O’Donoghue.


On the back of the photo is written “Patrick Donohue Ireland next to Montana” and ” Mary Corson’s grandmothers brother Hanna Donohue Lucey”. I don’t know about Montana, but I do know that Patrick was not Hanna Donohue Lucey’s brother, he was her nephew. But I understand the confusion, you see, both of Patrick’s parents were Donoghue’s.

His father was also named Patrick, his mother Catherine was Johanna (Donoghue) Lucey’s sister, which makes Patrick my first cousin 3 times removed.

Patrick was born 16 February 1874 in Glenflesk, County Kerry, Ireland and came to America around 1895. In 1905, he was in San Francisco, CA where he married Nora Williams. They had 5 children, Catherine, John, James, Thomas and Bernard. According to census records Patrick was a car inspector for the street railroad there for many years. He died 7 April 1958 and is buried in the Holy Cross Cemetery in Colma, CA [which is known as “the city of the silent”, the dead outnumber the living 1000 to 1!].

A side note, Patrick’s brother Florence stayed in Shronaboy, Glenflesk, the family homestead of Catherine and Johanna’s father John (Sean Con) O’Donoghue [link is to a transcription of an 1896 letter from John to Johanna], thus keeping the farm in the O’Donoghue name, although not in the same patrilineal line. The descendants of Florence still live there today.

This post is 29th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Lucey Revolutionary War Stanhope

52 Ancestors #28: Stephen Fountain, the Loyalist

Last night on Who Do You Think You Are some movie person that I’m not familiar with found out that her 5x great-grandfather was a Loyalist during the American Revolution. It reminded me that I too have a Loyalist ancestor, although I hadn’t done much research on him.

Stephen Fountain, my 6x great-grandfather, was born in Stamford, Connecticut around 1745 to Matthew Fountain and an unknown to me wife. Some online trees have Elizabeth Hoyt as the mother of all of Matthew’s children, but there is some conflicting information and I’m pretty sure that the first four or five children where from a different mother. More investigation is needed there.

In 1775 and 6, Stephen is married to Sarah (Scofield) and is a blacksmith/gunsmith in either Brookhaven, NY or Stamford, possibly both. And apparently, he is assisting the British ships in Long Island Sound with arms and supplies, and recruiting those sympathetic to the crown.

On 13 May 1776, the Joint Committee of Brookhaven hears “evidence being called to discover the secret plots and misconduct of sundry evil-minded persons”, namely Captain Jonathan Baker and blacksmith Stephen Fountain. Stephen’s apprentice Henry Hulse, Jr. testifies of secretive behavior:

a number of New-England people had staid in that neighbourhood, being to him strangers, who were often in private conference, in private places, with said Fountain, and would not let him (the deponent) come near them, nor hear what they said;

In all, 22 witnesses testify against Baker and Fountain and they are convicted “as persons that have acted inimical to the liberties of America in a most glaring manner”. The committee asks Lieutenant William Clarke to take the prisoners to the Provincial Congress in New York for disposition. On 8 June 1776, Congress confirms what the Brookhaven Committee had decided and sentences them to prison.

Jonathan Baker and Stephen Fountain, charged and convicted by the Joint Committees of Brookhaven, Manor of St.George, and Patenship of Meritches, of being enemies of their country, and, as such, of having taken up arms and held correspondence with our enemies on board of the Ministerial Ships of War, and very much promoted discord amongst the inhabitants, and seduced many to forsake the cause of their country, were sent to this Congress.
Resolved, That the said Jonathan Baker and Stephen Fountain, be committed to close custody.
And Ordered, That Daniel Goldsmith, the Jailer, he, and he is hereby, directed and requested to receive and keep them in safe custody until the further order of this Congress.

Details are sketchy on what happens next and how long he was imprisoned for, but it seems that Stephen escaped and joined the Royal Army.

In late 1780 through early 1781, Stephen was a member of the Queen’s Rangers. Fans of the TV series “Turn” might recognize the Lieutenant Colonel Commandant of his unit, one John Graves Simcoe, Esq. I’m hoping Stephen makes an appearance next season!

SFountainMusterRoll copy
Credit for this document goes to Linda Drake, a cousin that worked with UELAC to establish Stephen Fountain as a documented Loyalist.

In April of 1783, Stephen, wife Sarah and 207 other Loyalists boarded the ship “The Union” and were resettled in Nova Scotia. The Loyalists were granted land there and Stephen established a blacksmith shop and lived in Sandy Cove, Digby, Annapolis County, Nova Scotia until he died in 1818.

This post is 28th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

Special thank you to cousin Linda Drake, who worked with UELAC to document that Stephen Fountain was a Loyalist and to past president of UELAC Vancouver Branch Wendy Cosby who called this to my attention.

Testimonial quotes taken from this source:

AMERICAN ARCHIVES: Fourth Series containing A DOCUMENTARY HISTORY of The English Colonies in North America. By Peter Force; Volume VI.; Published by M. ST. Clair Clarke and Peter Force. Available here:
52Ancestors Lucey

52 Ancestors #27: Gerald Lucey, the poet

Both of my grandfathers come from large families: Vincent was one of 7, Robert was one of 9 children. Coincidentally, they each had a brother that died too young, one was Vinny’s brother Gerald.

James Gerald Lucey was the eldest son of James E and Mary (O’Brien) Lucey, born in Rochester, NH on 28 July 1908.

I found a guardianship record for him dated 23 January 1923 on, which is confusing, since his parents were both alive and it seems that his father is being named his guardian. Seems redundant to name a parent as your legal guardian. I recently learned that when a minor is left an inheritance that a guardian has to be established. Since Gerald was only 14, perhaps that’s the situation here. [thank you Heidi Forrester for asking the question on the Transitional Genealogists Rootsweb forum].
GeraldLuceyGuardianshipProbateRecord His grandmother Johanna (Donohue) Lucey died in March of 1922, perhaps she left Gerald an inheritance? I haven’t found any probate records for Johanna, but I’ll keep looking.

The Poet

Gerald graduated from Rochester High School in 1928. His sister Betty gave me copies of several yearbook pages, including two poems that he wrote. Betty hand wrote “this one won a prize!” on one of them. Betty lit up when she talked about Gerald, you could tell he held a special place in her heart.

The quote on his profile: “Love heats the brain, and anger makes the poet.” is from the Roman poet Juvenal. Paul Whiteman was a popular bandleader in the 1920’s known as the “King of Jazz”.

TopmpPoems from students Gerald Lucey, Blanche Davis, Horace Swaine, Annie Phillips, Kenneth Palmer, and Emerson Corson appeared in the Rochester High School yearbook.
GeraldLuceyPoetry GeraldLuceyPoetry 2

In April of 1929, Gerald married Marguerite Hayes, the 18-year-old daughter of George and Nellie (Blazo) Hayes. The Hayes family lived just a few doors down from the Lucey’s on Portland Street.

Gerald was an usher in his cousin Mary Schlenker’s 1932 wedding to Wilfred Roy.

28 April 1932 Wedding of Mary Schlenker and Wilfrid Roy
28 April 1932 Wedding of Mary Schlenker and Wilfred Roy, Rochester, NH

He worked as a Carder at the Gonic Woolen Mills, possibly under the direction of his grandfather James, they likely worked together for a short time before James retired.

Gerald and Marguerite had one daughter, Eleanor around 1933. She married Arthur Belanger Jr in 1953, they had four children.

Just nine years later, on 28 March 1942, at age 33, Gerald died of rheumatic heart disease brought on by rheumatic fever.

This post is 27th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Lucey

52 Ancestors #26: Mary Walsh, the disappearing great-grandmother

Every family tree has someone who “disappeared”, right? I have a few people who seemingly drop off the face of the earth, no censuses, death records, obituaries after a certain point.

My 3rd great-grandmother, Mary (Walsh) Lucey led a fairly well-documented life right up until she didn’t. This is kind of surprising, given that she lived in the mid to late 1800’s in Massachusetts, a time and place when both church and civil record keeping was in place. I’d like to share what I know, in the hopes that someday she is found.

The Early Years in Ireland

There is a Mary Walsh born 6 Aug 1821 in the Parish Registers of the Diocese of Cloyne, parish of Templerobin, Cove, Co Cork, Ireland 1. The parents listed are Mich[ael] & Mary Thomey, sponsors William Grant and Cath Nagle. I’m not sure if this is the correct Mary Walsh but it was the only one I could find in the area in the timeframe of her birth.

The next record of Mary is her marriage to James Lucey, 10 July 1841, documented in the same parish register as the birth record. The clergyman was P Fuller and the witnesses Jim Callaghan and Mary Sloane.

In April of 1853, a Mary Lucey is enumerated in Griffith’s Valuation on Cuskinny Road (off Bishop Street) in Queenstown2[modern-day Cobh].

Ireland Griffiths Valuation 18481864-1 copy

In America

On the 12th of November, 1853 Mary arrived in America with her sons John and James3.

Mary, John and James, coming to America aboard the Meridian. They arrived on 12 Nov, 1853.
Mary, John and James, coming to America aboard the Meridian. They arrived on 12 Nov, 1853.

In 1855 Mary, along with husband James [the only record of James in the U.S.] and sons John and James are living in Brighton, Massachusetts.

First record of my Lucey family in the U.S.
James, Mary and sons John and James.

In 18604, Mary lived in the BallardVale section of Andover, husband James is not listed. Her occupation is “washing” and the value of personal estate is $20.

Lucey's in the 1860 Census
Mary, John, James, Margaret and David

On 24 June of the following year, she married John Hogan of Lawrence, his third, her second marriage. This is the only record where her parents are listed and unfortunately, she only listed one: David Welch5 , which doesn’t match the birth record I had found.
I assume that her first husband James died sometime between 1855 and 1861, but I have not been able to find a death record.

John Hogan & Mary Lucey Marriage Record, 24 Jun 1861, Lawrence MA. Edited.
John Hogan & Mary Lucey Marriage Record, 24 Jun 1861, Lawrence MA. Edited.

In May of 1865 Mary, husband John Hogan and her children James, Mary, Margaret and David were living in South Groveland, Mass6. Incidentally, next door lived the Crotty family, including 16-year-old Mary Jane who would later marry James and die in childbirth.

Massachusetts State Census 1865-1 copy

27 July 1870, Mary makes her last appearance in the records7. Living in the same house as the 1865 census, but listed as Margaret Hogan with children Margaret and David, no husband listed. John was about 20 years older than Mary, so I assume that he died sometime between 1865 and 70.


Three of Mary’s children, David, Mary and Margaret, stayed in the Groveland area for the rest of their lives. James [my 2nd great-grandfather] moved to Rochester, New Hampshire in 1880. She wasn’t living with any of them in the 1880 census or with anyone else in the area that I can find. I’ve checked every Mary Hogan in the Massachusetts Death Record indexes, none fit.

I’ve searched cemetery records, newspapers, directories, civil records, census records, to no avail. It’s possible that she’s buried in the same plot as her son John at St. Augustine’s cemetery in Andover, MA, but the church has lost the records of who is buried in the plot beyond John. I’ll keep looking, hopefully someday a record will turn up that shows what happened to her. Have any suggestions, please leave them in the comments!

1. Parish Registers of the Diocese of Cloyne, parish of Templerobin, Co Cork, Ireland, no page numbers, Film Number: P4987. National Archives, Dublin, Ireland. Transcribed by the author 22 Feb 2002.
2. “Heritage World Family History Services. Ireland, Griffith’s Valuation, 1847-1864 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2008. Original data: General Valuation of Ireland. Dublin, Ireland: Irish Microforms Ltd., 1978. National Archives, Dublin and Public Record Office, Belfast. Parish: Templerobin. Pg. 66.
3. “Boston Passenger Lists, 1820-1943” database. ** ( : accessed 17 Sep 2013), entry for Mary Lucy, aboard *Meridian*, Liverpool to Boston, arriving 12 Nov 1853; citing Boston, Massachusetts. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Boston, Massachusetts, 1820-1891. Micropublication M277. RG036. 115 rolls. National Archives, Washington, D.C.
4. 1860 U.S. Census, Essex County, Massachusetts, population schedule, Town of Andover, Ballard Vale post office, page 202, dwelling 1368, family 1615, Mary Lucy household; digital images, ** ( : accessed 17 Sep 2013); citing NARA microfilm publication M653, roll 496; Page: 202; Image: 206; Family History Library Film: 803496.”
5. Massachusetts, Marriage Records, 1840-1915 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013.Original data: Massachusetts Vital Records, 1840–1911. New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, Massachusetts.Massachusetts Vital Records, 1911–1915. New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, Massachusetts. Entry for Mary Lucey and John Hogan
6. Massachusetts, State Census, 1865 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2014.
Original data: Massachusetts. 1855–1865 Massachusetts State Census [microform]. New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, Massachusetts. Town of Groveland, Lines 27-32, Household 311.

7. 1870 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Year: 1870; Census Place: Groveland, Essex, Massachusetts; Roll: M593_608; Page: 602B; Image: 439; Family History Library Film: 552107. Family 382

This post is 26th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Lucey Revolutionary War Stanhope

Independence Day 52 Ancestors #25: Peter Stanhope – Rev War Soldier

I’m fortunate to have a direct ancestor that participated in the American Revolution, my 5th great-grandfather Peter Stanhope. I’ll eventually get around to filling out my Sons of the American Revolution membership application.

He and his older brother Samuel both served, of the two, Samuel’s service is better documented due to his pension records. I’m not sure why Peter doesn’t have a pension file. Samuel served two separate stints with the militia in Massachusetts, the first for 8 months in 1775. According to his pension record “that at the time Bunker Hill Battle was fought he was at home on a furlough”

Both served in Captain Manasseh Sawyer’s Company, Colonel Nicholas Dike’s Regiment for 3 months in the fall of 1776. Samuel’s application for pension provides a description of this service:

…he joined the army at Dorchester hill – at which place he assisted in the building of a fort and where he was stationed the principal part of the time – that towards the last part of this enlistment he was ordered to Castle Island where he worked on the fortress there being built on said island during the day, and returned at night to Dorchester Hill…

Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors in the Revolutionary War pg. 825 entry for Peter Stanhope

Peter was born 29 Nov 1759 in Sudbury, Massachusetts to Samuel and Elisabeth (Angier) Stanhope. Peter married Elizabeth Parmenter 30 Nov 1775 in Bolton, they had 12 children there and at some point between 1802 and 1810 moved to Plantation 4 [later Robbinston] in Washington County Maine. In 1845 he died there at age 86.

This post is 25th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

Sources: Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors in the Revolutionary War (Images Online) [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2004.
Original data: Massachusetts. Secretary of the Commonwealth. Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolutionary WarVol. 1-17. Boston, MA, USA: Wright & Potter Printing, 1896-1908. Case Files of Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Applications Based on Revolutionary War Service, NARA M804. Record of Samuel Stanhope, page 5 of Pension Application. Accessed 4 Jul 2014.

52Ancestors Lucey

52 Ancestors #24: James Lucey and Cocheco Bottling Works

In March of 1904, my great-grandfather James E Lucey Jr along with his brothers David and John, purchased the Emerson Bottling Company of Rochester, NH and renamed it the Cocheco Bottling Works.

Listing in Vol 1 of the State of NH Annual Reports 1912-1913
Listing in Vol 1 of the State of NH Annual Reports 1912-1913 Pg.16

They bottled their own ginger ale, tonic water as well as orange and lemon-lime crush. Around 1917, the Lucey’s sold the business to Alfred Lagasse, who lived a few doors down from James and his wife Mary on Portland St. in Rochester. Alfred was late with a payment once and Mary chased him down Portland street with a broom according to a story I was told by her daughter Betty.

coverThe Bottling Works building made the cover of the Images of America Rochester book by Florence Horne Smith. If you are not familiar with this wonderful series of books from Arcadia Publishing, check out the available titles here. I have about 30 of them from the various places my family have lived over the years, there’s always something of interest in them.

Over the years I’ve found some bottles and a wooden crate with the Cocheco logo, it’s doubtful that they are from the time period when the Lucey’s owned it, but still nice to have.


James was born in South Groveland, MA on 14 Apr 1879 and married Mary O’Brien on Halloween in 1905. They had seven children, all in Rochester: Frances, James Gerald, Richard, Donald, Vincent [my grandfather], Joan and Elizabeth. James died of a heart attack in Rochester on 19 Jan 1944 at 64 years old.

This post is 24th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Lucey

Graduation Day – 1932/2014

Yesterday my son graduated high-school, congratulations Josh!

Eighty two years ago, my grandfather Vincent John Lucey graduated from Rochester (NH) High. I’m sure Vinny’s parents were as proud of him as we are of Joshua.

Hope springs eternal…

VinnyCap&Gown copy IMG_0309





This post is 22nd in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Lucey

52 Ancestors: #14 Sandra Smith Davis

This week, I’d like to say Happy Birthday and remember a wonderful woman, Sandra Davis.


When I moved to Haverhill, MA in 2001, I knew that my Lucey’s had lived across the Merrimack River in Groveland in the 1860’s, it was what drew me to the area in the first place. What I didn’t know, was that my 2nd great-grandfather James had a brother David that stayed in the area after James left for Rochester, NH in 1879.

David Lucey (1857-1904) lived on Temple St with his wife Jean (Brodie) and their daughter Lucille [yes, Lucy Lucey].  He was a real estate investor and owned a bar/restaurant in Washington Square in downtown Haverhill. It was such a pleasant surprise to find out about this “lost” [to me anyway] branch of the family.

Later in 2001, I found a forum post on a local website looking for information on relatives of Lucille. A woman named Sandra Davis from Texas said she was a descendant of Lucille and Harold Smith. How exciting! A real, long-lost cousin!

Sandra, a 3rd generation only child on her Lucey line, had been looking for information on this part of her family for a number of years and fortunately, my grandfather’s sisters Betty and Joan were still around and knew Sandra’s father and grandmother. They exchanged letters and in 2002 we held a family reunion at our house and Sandra attended as the guest of honor.

Sandra and Betty Lucey Bedard August 2002
Sandra and Betty Lucey Bedard August 2002

We kept in touch over the ensuing years and when we moved to North Carolina, Sandra and her husband Ted came from Texas to visit their son Russell and his family who live in the same area and we visited with them. And while I haven’t met her other children, we keep in touch via social media and I’m sure will meet at some point.

Unfortunately, Sandra passed away in 2011.

In her emails to me, she would often thank me for giving her a connection to this part of her history that she never knew, but I’m the one that’s thankful. Not only was she wonderful to me, my wife and my children; she was the catalyst for having that family reunion which was the last time my grandfather’s sisters and my grandmother were together, three short years later they were all gone. We also have a great relationship with Russell and his family. Russell and I share a love of beer and music, it’s in the genes I’m sure.

So thank you Sandra and Happy Birthday, you are missed.

Lucey Family Reunion Aug 2002
Lucey Family Reunion Aug 2002

This post is 14th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Ireland Lucey

The One That Stayed 52 Ancestors: #12 Anne Lucey Mann

When my Lucey’s came to America in 1852 they left daughter Anne in Ireland, she was probably only 10 years old. I wonder why she stayed, perhaps she was sick and couldn’t travel. And who she lived with, did some other family members remain? I only found out about Anne because her daughter Elizabeth came to America and stayed with family in Haverhill and Groveland, Massachusetts (censused as “niece” in 1900 and 1910). From Elizabeth’s passenger records, I was able to find Anne and her family in the 1901 and 1911 Ireland Censuses.

The Cover Page of the 1901 Ireland Census for the Mann family
The Cover Page of the 1901 Ireland Census for the Mann family

The family lived at 36 Harbour Row in Cobh or Queenstown as it was known then, in County Cork. Some additional location info is also captured on the form including:
Barony: Barrymore
Parish: Templerobin
Townland: Kilgarvan

In the 1901 Census the family consists of:

John, age 61, a carpenter born in London
Anne, age 49 [this might be 59], wife, born in County Cork
Mary Ellen, age 29, dressmaker, born in County Cork
Anne, age 20, dressmaker, born in County Cork

In 1911, things have changed a bit. Anne is now a widow and there’s a son listed, John age 38 that wasn’t listed with the family in 1901. An additional question was asked in this census, number of children born and living, to which Anne answered 9 and 7 respectively. I know of only 4 children, Mary, John, Elizabeth and Anne. So more research to do there, sounds like a good reason to visit Ireland again!

1911 Ireland Census Mann
John Arthur Mann, Anne’s husband, died 27 Feb 1906 and is buried in Templerobin Cemetery in Cobh. Son John is also buried there, he died 16 Feb 1935. I don’t have any additional information on Anne or her daughters. I’m hoping there are some descendants out there, please contact me via comment or email if you are connected.

This post is 12th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

[1]  National Archives. Census of Ireland, 1901/1911 []. Dublin, Ireland.

52Ancestors Bowen Lucey

Happy Birthday Nana 52 Ancestors #8: Doris Bowen

I was fortunate to have been able to spend a lot of time with my paternal grandmother. When I was very young, she would babysit me and I remember spending a lot of time playing with toys like Weebles and Fisher-Price Little People that she had in a special corner of her three season porch. She and my grandfather Vinny used to visit us on Sundays and bring ice cream (bubble gum flavor sometimes) from Darby’s in Wakefield, MA.

Doris May Bowen

Later in life I was able to talk to her about the family and ask lots of questions. She told me about how her grandfather Fred Bowen made her feel special by taking her into town on his horse and carriage to buy her a dress. About how she worked in a sardine packing plant in Lubec Maine when she was just 9 or 10. And about how she and Vinny loved to drive to places around New England and eastern Canada, collecting swizzle sticks as memento’s from restaurants. They had hoped to do more after he retired, but cancer caught up with him on his 65th birthday.

3870fa6b-4486-42c8-ac32-9c252e6976a4She was a great cook and baker. She cooked for the Gibbs (oil company) family for years and her pie and cookie recipes have been handed down for several generations (although she possibly “forgot” to write down an ingredient now and then, since they are never quite the same).  I think of her every time I see a Lemon Chiffon pie. I say see because I can’t ever eat another one,  it can’t compare to hers.

She would have been 101 today.

Doris May Bowen was born in Edmunds, Maine in 1913 to George and Bessie (Stanhope) Bowen1. As is mentioned in a prior post, her family moved to Rochester, NH in the early 1930’s from Perry, Maine. She met my grandfather Vinny while he was working at Winkley’s Grocery Store at 81 Portland St, near where they both lived. They married on 28 November 1936 and lived in Rochester for several years before moving to Saugus, MA.

She died 30 Jan 2004 in Wilmington, MA2 but she’s thought of often.

This post is 8th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

[1] Maine Department of Health and Welfare, Certified Abstract of a Record of Live Birth. Doris May Bowen, Date of Birth: 23 Feb 1913. Date Filed: 1913. Copy in possession of the author.

[2] U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-Current [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2011. Number: 217-03-3658; Issue State: Maryland; Issue Date: Before 1951. Original data: Social Security Administration. Social Security Death Index, Master File. Social Security Administration.

52Ancestors Lucey

Look Twice! 52 Ancestors: #7 David Joseph Lucey

It’s a good practice to re-examine old notes and documents every once in a while, you might make a new connection or glean new information. It’s good to have others look too, a fresh set of eyes might see things you’ve overlooked. [Sounds like a great reason to have a blog, doesn’t it?]

Case in point, the picture of the Carding room crew featured in the Woolen Mill Workers post.

I’ve looked at that picture a thousand times but never noticed that the person sitting right next to my 2nd great-grandfather James is likely his son David!  A sharp-eyed cousin emailed me and pointed out that he looks an awful lot like the guy in another picture we have that we know to be David Joseph Lucey. Thank you cousin Laurie!

Same person? What do you think? Leave a comment and let me know.
Same person? What do you think? Leave a comment and let me know.

I knew David worked for the Gonic Manufacturing Company as a “second-hand” from his death record, but had no idea if he might have worked with his father in the carding room. I checked the Rochester, NH Directories on and sure enough in the 1909 directory he’s listed as a carder.

Rochester section listing for David J Lucey
Rochester directory listing for David J Lucey. Dover, New Hampshire, City Directory, 1909 (accessed 12 Feb, 2014) U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2011.
Rochester Courier, 22 Dec 1922 Pg. 2B
Rochester Courier, 22 Dec 1922 Pg. 2B

David Joseph was born 26 Aug 1877 in South Groveland, MA and was likely named after his uncle David Joseph Lucey (1857-1904). He married Mary Hartigan on 18 Apr 1906 in Rochester, NH and they had three children, Bernadette, Mary Frances, and David.

In 1911 he was elected Tax Collector1, foreshadowing his the public service of his son, also David Joseph, who was the Massachusetts Registrar of Motor Vehicles in the 1970’s.

He continued to work at the mill as a second-hand until his untimely death of a heart attack at age 45 in December of 19222.

This post is 7th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

[1] History of Strafford County, New Hampshire and Representative CitizensBy John Scales. Published by Richmond-Arnold Publishing Co. Chicago, Ill. 1914. Available online via Google Books. ( accessed 12 Feb 2014).

[2] New Hampshire, Death and Disinterment Records, 1754-1947 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013. Lucey, David J. Image: 2453. Original data: “New Hampshire, Death and Disinterment Records, 1754–1947.” Online index and digital images. New England Historical Genealogical Society. Citing New Hampshire Bureau of Vital Records, Concord, New Hampshire.

52Ancestors Lucey OBrien

52 Ancestors: #5 Patrick O’Brien

O’Brien might be the most common Irish name in America or maybe it just seems that way when I’m trying to find records for my 3rd great-grandfather, Patrick. There are over 4 million results returned when searching for O’Brien on Ancestry and that doesn’t count the misspellings.

Patrick’s last name is misspelled O’Brion on his 1874 marriage record to Ellen Ryan (spelled Rayen on the same)1 and O’Brine on his 1919 death record.2 Thankfully, his daughter Mary passed along some papers and a picture to my grand aunt Betty (Lucey) Bedard. And via, I connected with a descendant of one of Patrick’s brothers. Chris was able to fill in many blanks and confirm the connection to the Amesbury MA O’Briens.

Patrick O’Brien and Helen Melson (not sure who she is)

Patrick was born in Tuam, County Galway, Ireland in March of 1848, the eldest son of Patrick and Bridget (Hare)3. He came to America sometime in the mid to late 1860’s, probably with his siblings John, Richard and Mary. They lived in Amesbury, MA and he worked in the carding room at the woolen mills there and in neighboring Salisbury4.

This signature is from one of Mary’s report cards

By 1876 he was living in Rochester, NH with wife Ellen (Ryan) and working in the woolen mill, probably the Gonic Manufacturing Co where James Lucey, the future father-in-law of daughter Mary, worked. They had four daughters in Rochester, Katherine (1876-1966), Bernice (1879-1948), Mary (1881-1972) and Sara (1883-1886).5

I love how stuff like this was published in the newspaper!

In the summer of 1910, he and James Lucey visited York Beach Maine where James and Mary (O’Brien) Lucey were vacationing.6

Patrick died 19 Jul 1919 at home in Rochester at age 71.

This post is 5th in the in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

1. Maine, Marriage Records, 1713-1937 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2010.Original data: Maine Marriage Records, 1705-1922. Augusta, Maine: Maine State Archives. Pre 1892 Delayed Returns; Roll #: 81.

2. New Hampshire, Death and Disinterment Records, 1754-1947 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013.Original data: “New Hampshire, Death and Disinterment Records, 1754–1947.” Online index and digital images. New England Historical Genealogical Society. Citing New Hampshire Bureau of Vital Records, Concord, New Hampshire.

3. ibid.

4. 1870 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Year: 1870; Census Place: Amesbury, Essex, Massachusetts; Roll: M593_607; Page: 27A; Image: 58; Family History Library Film: 552106.

5. New Hampshire, Birth Records, 1659-1900 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations. Inc., 2013.Original data: “New Hampshire, Birth Records, through 1900.” Online index and digital images. New England Historical Genealogical Society. Citing New Hampshire Bureau of Vital Records, Concord, New Hampshire.

6. Portsmouth Herald (Portsmouth, New Hampshire) [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2006.Original data: Portsmouth Herald. Portsmouth, NH, USA. Database created from microfilm copies of the newspaper. 2 Aug 1910, pg. 2.

52Ancestors Lucey

52 Ancestors: #4 The Woolen Mill Workers

Rather than focus on a specific ancestor this week, I thought I’d share a picture and some thoughts on the woolen mill workers in my family.

I believe my 3rd great grandfather began his long career in the mills at Ballardvale, a section of Andover, MA around 1860. His brother John likely worked there also. For any art buffs Charles Sheeler immortalized the mills of Ballardvale in his 1946 painting.

From about 1865 until 1880, the family lived in South Groveland, MA and worked in the mills there.

In 1880, James, his wife Johanna and their children, John, David and James (my 2nd great-grandfather) moved to Rochester, NH where James became Boss Carder at the Gonic Manufacturing Company.

James is in the center of the picture with his carding room crew from the Gonic Manufacturing Company in Rochester, NH.
James is in the center of the picture with his carding room crew from the Gonic Manufacturing Company in Rochester, NH.

Robert Frost wrote “The Lone Striker” about his own experiences working in the mills at Lawrence, Mass in the 1890’s. I think it paints a vivid picture:

The air was full of dust of wool.
A thousand yarns were under pull,
But pull so slow, with such a twist,
All day from spool to lesser spool,
It seldom overtaxed their strength;
They safely grew in slender length.
And if one broke by any chance,
The spinner saw it at a glance.
The spinner still was there to spin.
That’s where the human still came in.
Her deft hand showed with finger rings
Among the harplike spread of strings.
She caught the pieces end to end
And, with a touch that never missed,
Not so much tied as made them blend.

This post is 4th in the in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52Ancestors Bowen Lucey

Two Days before Christmas, 52 Ancestors: #3 Herbert Bowen

December 23rd 1934 was a cold but clear Sunday in Rochester, New Hampshire. My grandmothers younger brother Herbert Bowen was riding around town that afternoon with his friends Arthur and Eleanor when the unthinkable happened.

Arthur is behind the wheel when he spots a car backing out of a driveway. He hits the brakes but they are coming down a hill and the road is icy, he loses control and skids into a telephone pole. Herbert is dead on arrival, he was just 20 years old. The two friends are injured but survive.

What a horrible Christmas that must have been for all the families involved. My grandmother spoke fondly of her brother but I don’t recall any specific stories, just what a tragedy his death was. If any family members reading this know of any, please post a comment or send me an email.

Herbert Sewall and Doris Mae Bowen circa 1918
Herbert Sewall and Doris Mae Bowen circa 1918, in the background is their grandfather Sewall Stanhope

Herbert Sewall Bowen was born 30 Aug 1914 in Edmunds, Maine to George and Bessie (Stanhope) Bowen. The family moved to Rochester shortly before the accident because work was scarce in Down East Maine at the time and George’s brother Myron had found a job a the W.H. Champlin box company. They lived in the same multi-family house on Knight street with Myron and his family until 1935 or 36 when they moved to Portland Street. My grandfather Vinny’s family lived on Portland Street, he and Doris married on 28 Nov 1936. George, Bessie and their other son Alton later moved to Meaderboro Road, not far from Walnut Street where Herbert was killed.

Transcription of the Rochester Courier article:

One Killed, Two Injured, As Car Skids Into Pole
Hubert Bowen, 20, Dies in Local Crash

Herbert Bowen of 21C Knight street was instantly killed and Arthur Fairweather, Jr., 18, same address, and Eleanor Hanson, 17, of Bow Lake were badly injured when an automobile, driven by Fairweather, skidded into a telephone pole on Walnut street, Sunday afternoon.
According to police, the car was coming down the hill on Walnut street. A car, driven by Albert C. Elgar of Hillsborough and Mrs. Ethel Fitch of East Rochester, was about to back out of a driveway, which was on the left of the approaching car. A collision did not occur as the Elgar car did not back into the street, but evidently Fairweather applied his brakes and his car skidded at full speed on the icy street into the telephone pole.

Rochester Courier 30 Dec 1934 pg. 1

Bowen was taken to the Frisbie Memorial hospital and was pronounced dead on his arrival. Dr. Norman Chesley rendered aid to the other occupants of the wrecked machine.
Dr. Forrest L. Keay, medical referee of Strafford county, viewed the remains and pronounced that Bowen was instantly killed.
Fairweather had a bad cut on the forehead and another cut on the back of his head. Miss Hanson was cut and bruised.
State Officer Frank D. Manning and Traffic Officer Clyde Cotton were on the scene early, being closely followed by State Inspector Harold Foss of Dover.
An investigation was held at the City hall, County Solicitor Thomas J. McGreal of Somersworth in charge. All parties involved were questioned and the accident was declared unavoidable.
Bowen is the son of Mr. and Mrs. George Bowen and was employed at the W. H. Champlin lumber mill.

Herbert Bowen Is Buried Wednesday

Funeral services were held Wednesday afternoon at the Edgerly chapel on South Main street for the late Herbert Bowen, who was killed instantly in an automobile accident on Walnut street.

Rochester Courier 4 Jan 1935 pg. 5

Mr. Bowen was born in Edmunds, Me., the son of George and Bessie (Stackpole) [actually Stanhope] Bowen and was 20 years of age. He was employed at the W. H. Champlin lumber mill in this city and a wide circle of friends were deeply shocked because of the tragedy.
Rev. Daniel H. Miller, pastor of the True Memorial church, officiated. There was a large and beautiful floral tribute. Undertaker J. H. Edgerly was in charge of the funeral arrangements.

This post is 3rd in the in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

Donoghue Lucey

52 Ancestors: #1 Johanna Donoghue

Amy Crow over at No Story Too Small had a great idea to encourage family history blogging: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Posts can be anything (stories, pictures, etc…), just focus on one ancestor. I hope to meet the challenge.

My first post is on my 2nd great-grandmother, Johanna Donoghue (1849-1922). She left the family farm in Shroneboy, Ireland in 1871 and came to America with her cousin Elizabeth Mahoney.

The view from Upper Shronaboy, the O'Donoghue family farm.
Upper Shronaboy, the O’Donoghue family farm. O’Donoghue’s still live there today.

In 1875, she married James Edward Lucey in South Groveland, Massachusetts. They had 10 children, three of which died young of diphtheria. They made their home at 66 Church St in the Gonic section of Rochester, New Hampshire where Johanna planted lilac bushes (her favorite) and they built a lawn-tennis court.

Johanna and daughter Agnes circa 1905
Johanna and daughter Agnes circa 1905

Shortly after she died in 1922, the following appeared in the Rochester Courier.

By the death of Mrs. James E. Lucey, which was announced in the Courier last week, Gonic loses one of its most highly respected ladies. She had a very pleasant disposition and always looked on the bright side of life and well does the writer remember, when he was a boy playing with other boys around the Lucey homestead, making much noise and doing many tricks we ought not to do, Mrs. Lucey would not scold us but approach us in a bright and cheerful mood and kindly asked us to be good boys, and we would always mind her. She was honored, respected and beloved by all who knew her and is a big loss to the community. She was a loving wife and a devoted mother and her husband and children have the heartfelt sympathy of the whole village in their great loss.



Tombstone Tuesday – John Lucey 1843-1860

On the 12th of November, 18531 ten year old John Lucey, his mother Mary and younger brother James (my 2nd Great Grandfather) arrived in Boston, Massachusetts. Just seven years later, he was dead2 of peritonitis.
According to the 1860 census3, the family lived in the BallardVale section of Andover, where John worked as a spinner, likely in the woolen mills of the BallardVale Manufacturing Company.

Headstone of John Lucey. St. Augustine's Cemetery, Andover, MA
Headstone of John Lucey. St. Augustine’s Cemetery, Andover, MA

1. “Boston Passenger Lists, 1820–1943” database. ( : accessed 17 Sep 2013), entry for Jno Lucy, aboard Meridian, Liverpool to Boston, arriving 12 Nov 1853; citing Boston, Massachusetts. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Boston, Massachusetts, 1820–1891. Micropublication M277. RG036. 115 rolls. National Archives, Washington, D.C.
2. “Massachusetts, Deaths, 1841–1915,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 17 Sep 2013), John Lucy, 1860.
3. 1860 U.S. Census, Essex County, Massachusetts, population schedule, Town of Andover, Ballard Vale post office, page 202, dwelling 1368, family 1615, Mary Lucy household; digital images, ( : accessed 17 Sep 2013); citing NARA microfilm publication M653, roll 496; Page: 202; Image: 206; Family History Library Film: 803496.”

Dogs Lucey

National Dog Day

In honor of National Dog Day, (Aug 26th, I know, I’m late) here are a couple of pictures of my 2nd Great Grandfather, James Edward Lucey (1848-1934) and some family pets. Unfortunately I don’t have any info on the dogs…

James Lucey JimDada&Dogs

I’ve pretty much always had a dog and have 3 now. Here’s one of me and my first dog, Misty, in about 1972.
Dave and Misty

Lucey OBrien

Wordless Wednesday – The Lucey Grandchildren

"The Lucey Grandchildren"

On the back – “The Lucey Grandchildren”

This picture was probably taken in the spring of 1915 in Rochester, New Hampshire, I’m pretty sure my grandfather Vincent is one of the babies in the front row, he was born in Sept 1914.

Vinny’s brothers  are also in the picture: Donald (second from left, back row), Gerald (center, back row) and Richard (far right, back row).

Other possibles, all cousins to Vinny: Mary Lucey Corson and David Joseph Lucey (the other two babys), Bernadette and Mary Frances Lucey (Davids older sisters, girls in the front row), John Francis Lucey (back row, far left). 3 are unidentified.

Bowen Frost Lucey Technology

Can I get your number?

I’m a numbers guy. I like to know how I’m doing against my goals and track statistics to see trends. I have an app on my iPhone that tells me how many cigarettes I haven’t smoked since I quit 6 months ago (3500-ish) and how much money I can redirect into my genealogy habit as a result (about $1000!!). I have apps to track my weight, my money, etc… It’s probably one of those things that has bled over into my personal life from work where “if you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it”. There’s something Pavlovian about it for me.

The one area that was for the most part safe from statistics was genealogy, until I read Crista Cowen’s “What’s Your Number?” post. I mean, I know about how many people are in my tree (5070 as of today), but that doesn’t really say anything about how I’m “doing”. What does that even mean in this context? I’m not doing any of this just to collect a bunch of names and dates. I want to know who I come from and where they came from, so I can go there and walk where they walked and hopefully eat some delicious desserts (to immerse myself in the experience, of course). But, I like this statistic, lets check it out.

As Crista outlines, in 10 generations each of us has 1,022 direct-line ancestors. Count up how many you have documented in each generation, add ‘em up and divide by 1022 to get your percentage. So how am I doing?

Not too bad, 10.6% overall. On my maternal grandmothers’ line I can’t get past my great-great grandparents (yet) so that takes quite a few possibles out very quickly. Fortunately, my paternal grandmothers’ family have been in America for around 300 years and left a nice document trail. The great thing is I now have a renewed focus and motivation to work on the lines that are sparse. Sometimes I get caught up in peripheral lines (making the tree wider, rather than deeper), which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but this is a number I’ll keep looking to improve.

Out of curiosity, I ran the numbers for my wife’s line and it came out slightly better at 12%. Her paternal French-Canadian lines are fairly well documented (Berube and Michaud). Her maternal lines are more recent (mid-to-late 1800’s) Irish immigrants, thus a little harder to track down.

I’d also highly recommend reading The Legal Genealogist’s entertaining blog post “More lost than found” on this same topic. So, what’s your number?

Source: Crista Cowan, “Family History All Done? What’s Your Number?,” Blog, posted 16 Aug 2012 ( : accessed 29 Aug 2012).

DNA Lucey OBrien

Tech Tuesday – DNA Test Results, Update

Cousin found! Well, technically he wasn’t lost as we had connected via trees several months ago, but it’s nice to have the documented relationship backed up by DNA results.

Chris and I are 4th cousins, via the O’Brien family of Tuam, County Galway, Ireland. Here’s how AncestryDNA presents a match when a common ancestor can be identified. They could have picked either 3rd great-grandparent, Patrick O’Brien or Bridget O’Hare. I think the system is very precise when it comes to names, dates and locations. It does not seem to accomodate for alternate spellings, abbreviations or common date modifiers (like circa or about) like the Ancestry search engine does.

My 2nd great-grandfather Patrick J. O’Brien was born in 1848 in Tuam (pronounced choom) and came to America around the late 1860’s. In August of 1874, he and Ellen Ryan (1846-1934) were married in Portland, Maine. They lived in Rochester, NH and had four daughters: Katherine (1876-1956), Bernice (1879-1948), Mary (1881-1972) and Sara (1883-1900).

I’m seeing a lot more potential matches on the AncestryDNA Member Match page now, averaging about 10-15 new matches every 7 days. Each match is shown with several pieces of information: possible relationship range and a confidence level. Interesting to note that Chris was shown as a possible range 5th-8th cousin and a “Low” confidence level on page 3 of my matches, so it took me a while to even notice that he was listed. I have six people listed as 95%+ confidence, 4th-6th cousins, 3 of which have trees that are public, yet unfortunately no obvious connection. Interesting leads though, lots of Virginia/North Carolina families but all of my people are from New England, maybe an unknown sibling went south at some point? I’ll just have to keep digging.


Wordless Wednesday – Vincent Lucey School Photos

Inspired by Randy Seavers’ (Not So) Wordless Wednesday post, I thought I’d share a couple of school photos of my grandfather, Vincent Lucey (20 Sep 1914-20 Sep 1976). Vinny grew up in Rochester, NH, the family lived at 75 Portland Street and he went to Rochester High School.

Here’s one from the beginning of his school career, looking thrilled to be there…

Vinny – 1921

and two from senior year.

circa 1933
circa 1933

Tombstone Tuesday – We Miss Thee At Home

David Joseph Lucey (my 2nd great-grand uncle, brother of James) was just 47 when he died in Dec 1904, leaving his wife Jean (Brodie) and daughter Lucille.

This cemetery plot was owned by Jean’s father, Peter Brodie and he, along with his wife Mary, son Robert, daughter Jean, Jean and David’s children Arthur and Lucille are all buried here. This death notice appeared in the Haverhill Evening Gazette on 12 Dec 1904.

On 14 Dec 1904, the following obituary was published in the Haverhill Evening Gazette:


The funeral of the late David J. Lucey was held this morning from St. James church, requiem mass being celebrated by Rev. Fr. Graham. The services were attended by a large number of friends of Mr. Lucey, including a delegation from Haverhill Lodge of Elks, of which he was a member. Many businessmen, who had business dealings with the deceased, were also there to pay their last respects to the memory of one of their number. The floral tributes were profuse and were silent testimonials of love and esteem.

At the conclusion of the services the remains were borne to St. James cemetery [he was actually buried in Riverview, not St. James, not sure if he was reinterred], the bearers being Dr. W.F.B. Reilly, Edward F. Sullivan and Thomas H. McDonald from Haverhill lodge, B.P.O.E.; John Lucey of Groveland, James Lucey of Groveland and John Fielding of this city, nephews of the deceased.

The floral tributes were as follows: Pillow, inscribed “Husband” wife; pillow, inscribed “Brother” Mrs. Chas. D. Sargent [Margaret Lucey] and Mrs. John Fielding [Mary Lucey]; cross, “Papa” daughter, Lucille; roses, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas H. McDonald; Easter lilies, Mrs. Charlotte Ford and Miss Annie Moran; spray of pinks, Miss Nellie Curtis; spray of chrysanthemums, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Merritt; spray of pinks, Mr. and Mrs. John Fielding Jr.; roses, J.B. Brosnan; chrysanthemums, Elizabeth Mann [daughter of sister Annie, who stayed in Ireland]; chrysanthemums, Mr. and Mrs. Olivers C. Frost; spray of pinks, Dearborn & Pinkham; cross and mound, Haverhill Lodge of Elks; pillow, “At Rest” Mr. and Mrs. James Lucey and family; spray of pinks, Mr. and Mrs. Monroe L. Corson; roses, Edward Charlesworth and Lyman Worthen. [David, Edward and Lyman visited Ireland in 1901]

Mr. Lucey left a wife, one daughter, Lucille; one brother, James Lucey [my 2nd g-g-father] of Gonic, NH and three sisters, Mrs. Margaret Sargent of Groveland, Mrs. Mary Fielding of Groveland, and Mrs. Annie Mann of Queenstown, Ire. [one sister stayed in Ireland!]


Wordless Wednesday – The Baby Book, 1907…

Frances Teresa Lucey was the first child of my great-grandparents, James and Mary (O’Brien) Lucey.

The last note: At 3 o’clock, Sat(urday). P.M. June 8th 1907, dear little baby Frances life went up to Heaven with the angels.

Civil War Lucey

Military Monday – James Lucey Civil War Service

It was tempting to call this post Mustache Monday, because James’ mustache is phenomenal!

James Edward Lucey, circa 1890

James enlisted 4 Dec 1863 for 3 years, at the time he was 16 years old (18 on the paperwork). He was the drummer boy for the Company M of the 2nd Massachusetts Heavy Artillery regiment. Company M was mustered into service on Christmas Eve, 1863. On 8 Jan 1864, under the command of Captain Jere A Greeley,  they left for the regimental headquarters in Norfolk, Virginia.

Co. M was in Norfolk and Portsmouth, VA until May 1864, then moved to New Bern, NC, Kinston, NC and Smithville, NC until Sept 1865 at which time they were sent home to Boston. At Gallups Island on 23 Sep 1865 they were mustered out. The regiment lost a total of 382 men, 363 to disease. There was a yellow fever epidemic in New Bern during the fall of 1864, which killed about 175 men.

From James’ military service and pension records (ordered from the National Archives), I’ve learned quite a bit. For example, Regimental Muster Rolls show some interesting details of what James was doing and/or breaking:

Jan & Feb 1865 – Lost or destroyed screw drive 23¢

Apr & May of 1865 – Picket and guard duty at Dove Station on Kinston + New Berne Railroad
July 1865 – Provide guard over prisoners Ft. Caswell, NC

From James Pension applications, there is a wealth of information. This is how I learned about his first wife, Mary Crotty, who, along with son James, died in childbirth in 1868. James and his family lived next door to the Crotty’s in Groveland, MA in the 1865 census. Mary’s brother Edward Crotty remained good friends with James, as he moved to Rochester, NH around the same time and was godfather to James’ daughter Cecelia.

The pension application also shows where James lived prior to enlistment (he listed Amesbury, which I’m not sure about but missed Andover.) It also lists all places lived since discharge and provides a physical description, 5’8″, 165 lbs, blue eyes, gray hair and a dark complexion.

James was very proud of his service to America and was a member of the Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.) for many years and participated in many parades and ceremonies in Rochester, NH. He also prominently displayed his honorable discharge papers and this beautiful “Soldiers Memorial”.

Honorable Discharge certificate


Bowen, James L. Massachusetts in the War, 1861-1865. Springfield, MA: Clark W. Bryan, 1889 pgs 731-733

Dyer, Frederick H. A Compendium of the War of the Rebellion. Vol. 2. Dayton, OH: Morningside, 1979 pg. 1241


Wedding Wednesday – Joan Lucey

This is one of my favorite family photos, taken at my grandfathers sister Joan Eleanora Lucey’s (1920-2003) wedding to Joe Brennan 31 Oct, 1942. Both Joe and Joan worked for Pratt & Whitney in Hartford (as did Joan’s father James Lucey). Joan’s sister Betty was the maid of honor and brothers Donald and Vincent (my grandfather) were ushers.

Left to right, Vincent, Betty, Donald, Joan, James, Mary (O’Brien) Lucey
Rochester Courier 12 Nov 1942

Sunday’s Obituary – James Lucey, 87, Gonic Civil War Vet, Dies

Funeral Services for James Lucey, 87, of Gonic, were held Saturday morning at St. Mary’s church. Rev. John J. McNamara officiated. The services were widely attended by relatives, friends and members of military organizations of which he was a member.

Death put an end to a most interesting career with the passing of Mr. Lucey at the Wentworth hospital in Dover Thursday. Born in Queenstown, Ireland, 87 years ago, James Lucey came to America at the age of twelve, making his new home in South Groveland, Mass. There he learned the trade of carder in one of the textile factories.

With the event of the Civil war Mr. Lucey, although too young for actual duty enlistment, joined Co. M. of the Second Massachusetts Heavy Artillery as a drummer, and soon found himself a regular soldier, engaging in many of the principal battles of the war. He saved his money that he received for fighting and when he returned to his home he once more took up the trade of carder.

In 1879 he moved to Gonic, where he lived until his death. He was employed at the Gonic Manufacturing company mills for 54 years, first as a carder, then as overseer of the card room. Last March he retired to enjoy life at his home on Church Street, where he lived with his daughter.

He is survived by a sister, Mrs. Mary Fielding of South Groveland, Mass.; a son, James Lucey, Jr., of Gonic; and three daughters, Mrs. Anna Stevens and Mrs. Margaret Brown of Dover, and Mrs. Agnes Corson of Gonic.

A past commander of the G.A.R., Mr. Lucey was accorded a military funeral by the A.O.H. and the American Legion. He will be missed by his many friends, to whom he seemed a necessary part of the Memorial and Armistice day celebrations. Hervey Edgerly was in charge of the funeral.

From the Rochester Courier, front page, 21 Dec, 1934 edition. Transcribed by David Lucey.


Workday Wednesday – Gonic Mfg Co Carding Room Team

James E Lucey (1848-1934) was the “Boss Carder” at the Gonic Manufacturing Company in Rochester, NH for many years. This is a photo of him (in center) and the Carding Team. At a Woolen Mill, carding raw wool removes impurities and tangles, which prepares the wool for the next step in the process, spinning.

I don’t know who any of the other people in the picture are, but would love to find out. Please let me know if you recognize anyone in the photo.

Gonic Woolen Mill Workers - Colorized version
Colorized version of the Gonic Woolen Mill carding room team photo. Colorized by
Gonic Manufacturing Company, Rochester, NH. Carding Room Team.

Tombstone Tuesday – Mary Lucey Fielding

This is the headstone of Mary Lucey Fielding (sister of James E Lucey) and her husband John, daughters Annie, Mary E,, Margaret (Floss) and her husband Roger Shea.

Immaculate Conception Cemetery, Lawrence, MA

Those Places Thursday – The Lucey home

The Lucey home, 66 Church St, Gonic, NH

When James Edward Lucey, his wife Johanna and 3 sons moved to Rochester, NH from South Groveland, MA in 1879, this is where they made their home, 66 Church St. The house remained in the family through the next generation, not sure of the exact date (probably 1970’s). UPDATE – I found a “History of Gonic House” that Jack Ineson likely typed up in the 1980’s. In May 1981 the house was sold to Louis Gouptil by Mary C. Ineson.

The house had a tennis court in the 1920’s!

Around 2002 I visited the house and spoke to the current owner, who was nice enough to give me a letter that was found beneath the floor boards during a remodel. It was an Oct 1934 letter addressed to one of James’ daughters from a local attorney, Conrad Snow, offering condolences on the death of her father.


Tombstone Tuesday

Arthur E Lucey, son of David and Jean (Brodie)
Born 25 Nov 1880
Died 29 Dec 1885
Buried in Riverview Cemetery, Groveland, MA

Mystery Monday – The death of JP Lucey

The father of James E Lucey (1848-1934) disappears between 1857 and 1860. In most records, he’s listed as James Lucey (marriage record and childrens birth records in Ireland), in 1857 he’s listed as JPL on the baptismal record of son David (Andover, MA) and he is missing from the 1860 census entirely.

Lucey's in the 1860 Census
Mary, John, James, Margaret and David in Andover, MA

In 1861, his wife Mary marries John Hogan in Lawrence, MA.

There is an 7 Jun 1856 death record from Boston MA for a laborer named Patrick Lucey that is about the correct age, cause of death “burned”, no parents or additional info listed. Not likely him, since son David was born 14 Aug 1857.

I’ve ruled out other James and/or Patrick Lucey/Lucy’s in the Mass death records for this time frame. I could not find a mention of his death in the Andover newspaper but I did find a death notice for son John who died in 1860 at age 17, so it is something that could have been published.

Son John is buried in St. Augustine’s Cemetery in Andover, MA. Unfortunately there are no other headstones on the plot and the cemetery has no record of who is buried there. Maybe he didn’t die, but just left?


Coming to America, Part 1

One of the first things I wanted to know when I started working on my family history was when my family came to America. Of course, there is more than just one immigration to answer that question, so this will be a multi-part post covering each family line. First up, my 2nd great-grandfather, James Edward Lucey (1848-1934) who left Queenstown (Cobh) Ireland in 1853 with his mother and brother.

Mary, John and James, coming to America aboard the Meridian. They arrived on 12 Nov, 1853.

James came to America aboard the Meridian with his mother Mary and brother John in late 1853. Sisters Mary and Anne remained in Ireland. Mary came to America later, but Anne stayed in Cobh and married John Mann.

First record of my Lucey family in the U.S.
James, Mary and sons John and James in Brighton, MA 1855

This is the first and only record of James Edward Lucey (1848-1934, enumerated as James Lucy Jr) with both of his parents in the United States. By 1860, the family had moved to the Ballardvale section of Andover, MA.