Saturday, October 17, 2015

Sunday's Obituary - Nellie Dever nee Riley

The Plain Speaker, 22AUG1903, pg 1
Remember when I posted about my mysterious Lees in Pittsburgh? I knew they were related, but I hadn't been able to figure out how they were related. Well, I still don't know, but now I have another mystery. This time in my Barrett line.

Patrick Barrett is as far back as I can go in my Barrett line. Sort of. Patrick died in 1908 and his death certificate listed his parents, but there's no guarantee that it's right. Perhaps knowing that his parents are listed as Edward Barrett and Mary Merrick (a name I've never heard in regards to my family tree...ever) may help me with this new mystery in the future. Who knows?

I know the Barrett in this clipping is my Patrick Barrett. The 1900 census shows my Patrick and his wife, Bridget, living in their home on East Diamond Avenue. I have three Mulhearns in my family tree, and one of them is a John, but I don't have much information on him. Perhaps this obituary that I found on will be able to shed some light on that.

"Death of Former Cranberry Lady.

Mrs. John Dever, of Avoca, a niece of Patrick Barrett, of East Diamond Avenue, and Mrs. John Mulhearn, of South Pine street, died last night. Mrs. Dever was formerly Miss Nellie Riley, of Cranberry. The funeral will take place at Avoca on Monday morning."

After finding this link I jumped back on to to try to find other articles about this mysterious woman from the Hazleton and Wilkes-Barre papers. I found some that may or may not be right, but then I discovered another on my Nellie and it shed a little light on how she died and where she's buried, but nothing on how she connects with my family.

The Wilkes-Barre Record, 25AUG1903, pg 12

Mrs. John Devers died on Saturday morning at the home of her mother on Spring street. Deceased was well known and highly respected by all who knew her. Her husband, mother, two brothers, one sister and four children survive, the youngest being 3 days old. The funeral will occur this morning with a requiem mass at St. Mary's Church; interment in St. Mary's Cemetery."

So the surname has an "s" in this article. Nothing to get all worked up about. So I went on FindAGrave to see if I could find St. Mary's Cemetery and discovered there was one in Avoca. I also discovered that there was a memorial for Nellie also showing her maiden name as Reilly (Riley). It has her birth as being in Hazleton in December 1864 and it has her linked to a memorial for her husband passing on March 3, 1906. How sad! Those kids were so young! Under her bio was a transcription of the clipping from the Wilkes-Barre Record and a statement by the author saying that she was the daughter of Charles and Margaret Barrett Reilly.

The Wilkes-Barre Record, 27AUG1903, pg 12

The funeral of Mrs. John Devers, whose death occurred on Friday morning under very sad circumstances, took place on Monday morning from her late home on Spring street. The remains encased in a handsome casket, were viewed by a great many sorrowing friends. A requiem mass was celebrated in St. Mary's Church by Rev. J. Lynch. The pall bearers were John Flannely, John Sheridan, James Walsh, John Gallagher, James Lavin, Edward Dunleavy."

All of this is very exciting, but it isn't proof. It is information that could possibly lead me to sources that will help me confirm or refute the information. I can also contact the FindAGrave contributor that posted the information and we can hopefully collaborate to figure this all out. I have no siblings for Patrick Barrett. Just the possibility of Edward Barrett and Mary Merrick being his parents. Now I have a potential sister in Margaret and possibilities of finding others, one of which may lead me to their parents!