Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for August, 2018

There comes a time when writing a family history book that you have to stop researching. I am in the final phases of the Colbert-Whelan Family History book and I am putting aside interesting leads for future research. I researching a little to  “fill in the blanks” as I review the book.

My grandfather, James Whelan, had a first cousin named Thomas Phelan, born in 1891. The names may seem different, but in Ireland in the 19th century everyone used the names Whelan and Phelan interchangeably.

With all the new Irish records available I easily located marriage and death records for most of his brothers and sisters, but couldn’t find Thomas. A quick check of Ancestry found that he had emigrated to the United States in 1916.

Thomas Whelan PAR 1916 1

Thomas Phelan, occupation: Ecclesiastical Studies

Thomas Whelan PAR 1916 2

Going to; Uncle, Father Wm. Ryan, St. Leo’s, Denver, Col.

Maybe Thomas had planned to be a priest, but he married in 1928 and had two children. He remained in Denver.

Who is Father William Ryan????

He wasn’t Thomas’ uncle – his mother’s name was Murnane, but his paternal grandmother’s name was Ryan, so maybe he was a cousin. This is on the list for further research.

Googling Father William Ryan (actually O’Ryan)  and St. Leo’s Roman Catholic Church resulted in a lot of hits.

Father O’Ryan was well known in his day. He was born in Cashel, County Tipperary in 1861 and became a priest in 1885. He left for Colorado not long after where he became the pastor of St. Leo’s.

He was known for his writing, his oratorical skills, and his charity work. Among the organizations he was instrumental in forming were the Hospital Association for the care of the sick poor and the Colorado State Tuberculosis Society. He was a member of the Colorado State Board of Charities and Correction.

In 1887 he helped found the Charity Organizations Associations. This was the start of the United Way.

FAther Oryan united way

He died in 1940 and is buried in Mount Olivet Cemetery.

photo of father oryan

THE BOOK

So what is happening with the book? It’s close to finished. I’m reviewing each chapter and finding weird typos (and fixing them). I’ve been in touch with some cousins and will be in touch with more to double check the information I have about their grandparents and great grandparents. And I’ve been trying to fixing photographs as best I can. 

MIchael before and after

Michael Colbert, U.S. Army, World War II. I cleaned it up a bit and cropped it.

James Colbert before and after

James Colbert (1895-1943), my grandfather’s brother

 

Another project – taking pictures of some items we have that belonged to my grandparents.

WS Annie Shanley teapot 2

Teapot owned by Annie Shanley Whelan

Stay tuned for more information on the book.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »