Thursday, May 27, 2010

Sheridan Family Deaths Mystery

According to information received recently, the Sheridans are a related branch of the Carey family.  It appears that John Patrick Carey who married [first] Barbara Gilboy [probably in Ireland] was an immigrant to and progenitor of the family in Canada.  A Mary Carey, whom I believe to be an older sister of John's, married Edward James Sheridan in Ireland, had 8 children and also emigrated with her family to Canada.

In October 1863, three of Mary's grandchildren by her son James Sheridan, along with an adult Thomas Sheridan age 57 [probably another of Mary's sons and uncle of the deceased children], died from what the record stated was not natural causes, as verified by a jury.  The parish records did not state any other details on the deaths.  I would think that such an accident or traumatic event would have been reported in a local newspaper - but have no idea how to locate same.  I've posted a query on one of the message boards, and hope to hear some suggestions. 

Online - Quebec Catholic Parish Records!

I've recently discovered the online Quebec Catholic Parish Records at  What a find!  They are not indexed, but are browseable and grouped by years.  I've found the baptism record for James Carey, great-greatgrandfather of my son, who emigrated to the U.S. about 1890! The records are written in French, which I have a basic working knowledge of...but I've been lucky enough to correspond with a gentlemen who has very kindly translated for me anything I can't quite make out.

I've also been in touch with the Chief of Police of Lincoln, New Hampshire, a very nice man who is also a genealogy buff.  He has been kind enough to send me a photo of James Carey, taken some time in the 1930s when James was in his 60's.  The Lincoln PD will be celebrating an anniversary in September, and the Chief has promised to send me any more info they may dig up on James Carey, the town's first Police Chief.

A couple of women have also emailed me recently regarding the Carey's - this must be a "Carey Year" !

Now I have to start recording the info I've found.  Am trying Legacy Family Tree instead of PAF, mainly because of their separate, searchable tabs including "To Do" lists, which I think will be very handy.

More later...

Thursday, February 18, 2010


I am currently seeking advice about seemingly conflicting information on James Carey.

The Carey family I found in the 1881 Quebec census was the only one with a son James that fit his age, name, place of birth and location.  I found James in the U.S. federal censuses from 1900 on forward.  His immigration dates per the censuses varied from 1887 to 1890.   The only slightly odd thing was one census showing he'd immigrated 1887 while his daughter immigrated 1888.

A very nice woman with a Quebec genealogy website located the marriage of James' parents, John Carey and Mary Powell.  The surname Powell fit as a James Powell lived with the family at the 1881 census.

I then located a marriage record for James and his wife Eliner Rheaume - which also named their parents.  James' parents were John Carey and Mary Ann Powell.

Then I started looking for the family in other censuses.  And found the 1891 census listed James twice - in Quebec.  Once in his own household with Eliner and their 2 children.  And once in his parents' home, without Eliner and the children, marital status "married".

So how could James be in the U.S. by 1890, and in Quebec in 1891?

I've done a little reading online about Quebec emigration to New Hampshire.  Turns out, similar to my Norwegian ancestors, French Canadians might emigrate to the U.S. to make some money and return home - or at least visit a time or two.  Could James have been visiting in 1891?  Or, are the federal censuses [all 3 or 4 of them] entirely wrong about his having immigrated by 1890?

Offhand, I don't know a way to check immigration records between the U.S. and Canada.  I also wondered about James Carey's naturalization records, which might provide an immigration date, but I don't even know if he moved from Quebec directly to New Hampshire, or if he perhaps lived in Maine or Vermont first and was naturalized in one of those states.