The Ellen O’Neill Letters, 1855-1920 donated by Ann Buckley
|Ellen Bridget O'Neill was
born in 1835 in Scalpnagown,
between Crusheen and Kilkishen in north east Clare. She emigrated
to the United States in 1854 where she lived with to her Aunt Ann
Connell Higgins on Gay Street in Manayunk, a small town outside Philadelphia,
Pennsylvania. Ellen married Patrick Francis Welsh and had a large
family. She died in 1908 in Manayunk. This collection of letters,
donated by Ellen’s great granddaughter, Ann Buckley, relates
to Ellen and her family. It includes correspondence from her father
and siblings in Ireland, particularly her sister Mary, her brothers
Patrick and Tim and niece Frances in New Zealand and a cousin in the
USA. There are also letters from Frances to Ellen’s daughter,
O’Neill Family of Scalpnagown
18 Jan 1855 from cousin Thomas Purcell, Elmira NY re letter from her father;
social life and marriage prospects; neighbours from Tulla in Elmira; quotes
Robert Burns’ song
C. Feb 1855 from Father, Thomas O’Neill Scalpnagown, Tulla relating
her mother’s death and local emigration to Australia
13 April 1855 from father Thomas, re death & burial of mother; request
for money; sister wishes to join her; price of crops rising.
23 April 1855 from cousin Thomas Purcell, Elmira NY encouraging her to
move to Elmira
C. July/Aug 1855 from father re her possible move to Elmira; things improving
29 March 1857 from Thomas Purcell mentioning a letter from her father
18 Nov 1857 from Father re bad year for potatoes and congratulating her
on her marriage
26 May 1864 from father and siblings re family news; infrequency of letters;
good price for crops; brother’s desire to emigrate.
26 Dec 1873 from sister Mary Malony, Lisofin recording a number of family
deaths including those of Ellen’s father, sister and grandparents.
12 May 1874 from sister Mary with family news
13 April 1885 from sister Mary re brothers in New Zealand
1893 from sister Mary with family news and possibility of Ellen visiting
27 July 1895 from Ellen and Pat in Lisofin to children in USA
19 Feb 1900 from sister Mary mentioning death of Ellen’s husband
and Mary’s own son
1 Nov 1900 from brother Patrick, New Zealand telling of New Zealand
31 March 1901 from sister Mary, Lisofin with family news
20 April  from sister Mary, Lisofin with family news
C. Dec 1901 from Mary Cassady, NY, after returning from visiting Ellen
22 Nov 1901 from niece Frances O’Neill in New Zealand with family
23 Jan 1902 from niece Frances O’Neill in New Zealand with family
23 July 1908 from brother Tim in New Zealand informing her of brother
30 August 1908 from brother Tim in NZ re hotels, farming and family in
17 Dec 1908 from Frances in NZ to Rose Welsh Bell re Ellen's death
1916. Two letters to Rose Welsh Bell on the death of her sister Julia
15 Sept 1919 from Frances O'Neill visiting San Francisco to Joseph Strain
22 Jan 1920 from Frances O’Neill to cousin Rose Welsh Bell on Frances’
return to NZ after US trip
From cousin Thomas Purcell, Elmira NY re letter from her father; social
life and marriage prospects; neighbours from Tulla in Elmira; quotes Robert
Thursday, Elmira, Jan 18, 1855
I received your kind and affectionate letter today and am glad to hear
that you are well in health. But I am sorrow for your mother being sick
hoping she will get better in her next letter. So I wish then many a
Dear Ellen, I ask one request of you that is to send me the letter you
received from your father to send it to me and I will be entirely oblige
to you and I will thank you for future favors. I will send you an envelop
to put your father's letter in it and you may send another letter in
the inside of it also.
This letter I received of you, it was as much as I could do to get it
from the post master because my name was spelt wrong. The way it was
spelt is Thomas Purcelly and that was wrong. The way is Thomas Purcell
(the last "l" with a long tail) of Elmira, Chemung Co., N.Y.
or Thos Purcell. Either will do. All our people are well. Mary and I
have been to 5 balls in a month and we are going to another tomorrow
night, that is Friday evening but I wish you were here and you would
come along with us. How delightful it would be to have you here and
if you come I will get you a good husband that is as true as the gospel
if you want to get married or supposing you don't we would like to have
you here and all our people and the neighbours that used to live near
you to home all the folks that ever lived in Tulla they are here and
a great many others besides of the old acquaintances.
Ellon, if that gentleman that you reference to, if he is not a good
looking man and you to get married to him, I will give you a purty good
scolding and I should think you would send for one of your brothers
or sisters before you would get married and then you see they would
help the old fox. Mary Sally is in Newmarket, upper Canada. Margaret
is married and have two children. So is Hanora. They are out west in
Ohio. John is gone to Illinois about 3 years. Father and the old woman
and children Mary and me are in Elmira and we are enjoying our selfs
according to the times. Thos Daffy and family are along with Mary Sally
My pen is poor my ink is blue, my love to you it will be true as a mother
which is considered to be extremely nice. The rose is red the violet
blue the pink is purty and so are you. Beware thou the voice of a stranger,
though of friendships its accents may be in his presence. My heart is
in danger then flee from this and grin, O flee. O quit such prosaical
stuff about produce and caution and care. We'd live in a cot and have
more than enough if love but abode with us there. But beauty how frail
and how fleeting the bloom of a fine summers day while worth in the
mind, O my Phillis will flourish with out a decay
Write to me as soon as you receive this letter and I will be in truly
obliged to you and thank you. I am keeping grocery all this winter and
I could treat with a good glass of wine or candies or anything you would
want. So no more at present from your truly cousin Thomas Purcell of
Elmira, Chemung Co., New York.Miss Ellen O'Neill,
please write me often lines backhanded til I see how well you [piece
From Father, Thomas O’Neill Scalpnagown, Tulla relating her mother’s
death and local emigration to Australia
[c. February] 1855
I now take the favourable opportunity of writing those few lines to
you hoping to find you in good health as this leaves me and all the
family in at present, thanks be to God for his kind mercy to us all.
Dear Ellon, your mother wrote to you about the beginning of October
last and stated in her letter the manner in which we had spent the three
foregoing months, but she got no answer during which time she suffered
much trouble. We tried every remedy we could to relive her, but alas
it was death that eased her pain. Dear Ellon, your dear and beloved
Mother departed this life on 1st of Dec., may God have mercy on her
Dear Ellon, her death is a sore thing to us and we are very sorry it
if we could it but we must have a welcome for the will of God.
I would like to let you know that your sister Mary has a notion of going
to Australia and I'd like that you should be with her if you don't like
your situation in America and if you chose to come home you can go for
one pound each in the free emigration as your Uncle Daniel and wife
did and are doing mighty well. Michael Hanrahan, John Keehan of your
native village, Connor Loughery of Ballinruan and many others of the
neighbourhood went out and are sending home lots of money. Michael Hanrahan
sent 50£'s in the course of six months, in fact it is the best
country for earning on the face of the globe and it would gratify me
very much if you and your sister was together.
Dear Ellon, we would be very comfortable now had not the death of your
mother taken place. I would like to let you know that she was buried
in Tulla decently.
Write to me as soon as possible. No more at present from your affectionate
The O’Neill home in Scalpnagown, 1962
From father Thomas, re death & burial of mother; request for money;
sister wishes to join her; price of crops rising.
[Addressed to Mr. Peter Higgins, Manayunk]
Scalpnagoon, April 13, 1855
I found a favourable opportunity of writing these few lines to you hoping
to find you and your Aunt [Ann Higgins nee Connell] and Mr. Higgins
in good health as this leaves me and family in at present, thanks be
to God for his kind mercy to us all.
Dear Ellen, I received your kind letter on the 20th of March which gave
me great pleasure. You want to know the reason why your Mother was buried
in Tulla. The reason is because we had a notion of going to some other
country and thus she fancied herself to be buried in Tulla. Your grandfather
and mother and aunts often visited her during time she was ill. They
were also to the funeral accompanied by all their friends and relations.
She was a period of three months on her bed. Dr. Molony often visited
her during that time but could do her no service and when she was approaching
her end, she was very much troubled about you as she was from day to
day expecting a letter from you.
You mention in your letter that you would like to know whether we had
a notion of going to Australia or not. I would like to let you know
that I have arrived to stay at home myself but Mary says that she will
either go to Australia or to you. She says she would like to be with
you and now she says she would like to know which place you would advise
her to go.
Dear Ellen, as we had to undergo such hardship as we did, you know we
spent a great deal of money and now if you could look into [letter smudged]
and send us one or two pounds it would serve us very much and perhaps
we may not want any more from you as the boys are getting strong and
are now able to work, thanks be to God. The times are mending here in
Ireland, potatoes 7 lb per stone, oats from 12 to 14 lb per stone, wheat
7-10 lbs. We got no letter from Mary O'Neill Sally but Mary Daffy wrote
home last harvest and said that she was doing very well. Write to me
as soon as possible. Not more at present from your affectionate Father
From cousin Thomas Purcell, Elmira NY encouraging her to move to Elmira
[Addressed to Ellen on Cotton St., Manayunk]
Elmira, April 23, 1855
I received your letter on the 22nd. I now sit down to write to you a
letter not having much time and you must excuse me for all my mistakes.
I have read your letter to all of our people. They all felt sorrow for
your mother's death but not any worse than I have. So the Lord be good
to her soul for ever and ever. Our people want you to come out here
and especially Mary. She says if you come out here to Elmira that she
will find you work less than a minute. Mary she is to work at the milliner
trade now and she says if you come do not buy anything as for dresses
or a bonnet because you can buy them in Elmira cheaper than you can
where you are. All of our people want you to come and live here. You
can make $600.00 a month here free of all charges. Girls here generally
work by the week from 10 to 20 shillings a week. Please do come. I have
got a place for you myself. If you come here which you will, you have
got to take the cars from Philadelphia to Williamsport and from Williamsport
to Elmira. I do think that rout is the cheapest for you to come. When
you come into the Depot inquire of a man the name of James Powell. He
is only a few rods from the depot by Michael Fitzpatrick or Martin Cavin
and either of them will show you where father lives or inquire for him.
You might by very apt to find out where he lived and have them to go
to the house with you. Write 3 or 4 days before you start so that I
will meet you at the depot and tell me when you're going to start and
you can find out at the depot how long it will take you to come and
when you will reach to Elmira and whether it is in the knight or in
the daytime. Please wright as soon as you receive this letter. So nor
more at present.
From your cousin Thomas Purcell Elmira
Chemung Co. N. York
I have not got many time to spare now but if
it is a thing that you don't come, I will let you know more in my next
You have mentioned in your letter that you would be anxious to go there
if I would give you good encouragement. Now there I am blocked. I do
not know whether you want to go home to Ireland or to come out here
Now, in regard to going home to Ireland, I have nothing to say about
it. You may do just as you think fit. Mary says if you come out here
that she will go with you in the fall and perhaps I would too. There
have 5 or 6 boys and girls gone from here this spring to Australia and
we are expecting a letter from them in the fall. Ellon don't be downhearted.
Keep good courage.
From father re her possible move to Elmira; things improving in Ireland
[c. July/August 1855]
I take the opportunity of writing these few lines to you hoping to find
you in good health as this leaves me in at present, thanks be to God
for his kind mercy to us all.
Dear Ellon, I received your kind letter on the 26th of June which gave
me and your brothers and sisters great pleasure. The friends and neighbours
were also very glad of its arrival. Your grandfather and mother are
in good health. Their family are also in good health. Your Aunt Catherine
and family are in good health. You say you would like to know your age
and that I can let you know. You will be 21 years at Christmas next.
Dear Ellon, I don't like to throw up house and land altogether, but
if you consider it fit, I will let one of the boys and one of the girls
out in a short time.
Dear Ellon, I am glad to tell you that we are doing much better now
than when you left home. Ireland is very good at present. There are
great prices for stock and provisions of every description.
Dear Ellon, you say that you would like my advice about going to Thomas
Purcell. I don't know what to say on the subject for I'll tell the reason
why I received no letter from him but one and that about two years ago
and then I can't say yeas or no but if you hear that it is a good place
and that he is doing well, you may go there if you choose.
This summer was wet and unnatural for the season until about the 20th
of this month but now we have charming weather and there is good prospect
of the crops, thanks be to God Almighty. I would like to let you know
that Thomas Poor's daughters are in Toville or in its vicinity. Toville
is a town in the County of Pencastle and State of Delaware.
I would like to know if you have any account of your cousin Mary O'Neill.
Catherine Burke mentioned in her letter on May last that she lived convenient
to herself and is married to a blacksmith. Nancy and Bridget Noon are
living in Toville town.
No more at present from your affectionate father
From Thomas Purcell mentioning a letter from her father and wages
Elmira, March 29th, 1857
I take the pleasure of writing these few lines to you, hoping to find
you in good health as this leaves me at present.
Dear Cousin, the happy news I received from your father yesterday that
was the 28 day of March I received a letter from him from Ireland. All
your people are well and your cousin Cate Hennessy and Mary and Mac
and all the family are well. I wrote to your father for your brother
Patrick O'Neill and to see if he would let him out to me and he said
he could not spare him at the present time but he would see afterwards
about it. I told him to send me the directions where you were and he
did so. He said you sent him some money and if you were here I would
help you and I will as it is. I do intend to send him some money purty
soon. Father sends his best word to you and so do the girls Mary Purcell
and Hanora and Margaret and so does myself, Thomas Purcell. Your father
says that potatoes are 8 pence a stone and corn meal 2.2. Thomas Daffy
and family and Mary Sally are in Newmarket in upper Canada. He did not
give the directions or I would write to them. But if you are so kind
and condescending as to send me the directions where they are, I will
write to them.
I should like to know how much wages you get a week. Make it mention
on your letter. Girls get here from $1 to 10 shillings in private houses
and 12 shillings to $2.00 in taverns. So I wish you would write before
you would come to Elmira. I should be very happy to see you and so all
the family in like manner. So direct your let to Robert Purcell are
in my name. Please do not forget to write as soon as possible.
So no more at present from your truly cousin Thomas Purcell of Elmira,
Chemung Co., N. York
State your letter in this way
Thomas Purcell Elmira
Chemung Co., N. York (that is all is required)
[Envelope noted "Please forward to Ellen
Scalpnagoon, January 1855
From Father re bad year for potatoes and congratulating her on her marriage
Scalpnagoon, November 18, 1857
My dear daughter,
Your letter dated the 18th May duly came to hand which gave us all great
consolation to hear that you were in good health as this few lines leaves
us all in at present, thanks be to God for his mercies bestowed upon
My dear daughter, I hope that you will excuse me for my long detainment
not writing to you before this, but I was waiting how would the crops
turn out. I am going to inform you that we have very bad potatoes this
year. Dear daughter, we would be very comfortable but for the death
of your mother the Lord by mercy, and the potatoes failing which leaves
us always buying. My dear daughter, you will let me know would you recommend
one of your brother out, he would be willing if you pay his passage.
My dear daughter, I am very happy to hear that you have joined the nuptial
band of marriage. My dear daughter, I am going to let you know that
your grandfather and family is all well your Aunt Catherine and family
is well. Your cousin Mary O'Neill got married to a smith but I do not
know her address.
No more at present. But I send you and your husband my kind love and
best respect until death.
Patrick & Ellen Welsh
From father and siblings re family news; infrequency of letters; good
price for crops; brother’s desire to emigrate.
May 26th 1864
My dear daughter
I take the present opportunity of writing this letter to you hoping
to find you in as good a state of health as I am at present and my family
thanks be to God for his mercy to us all.
My dear daughter, my family is a little scattered of late. Patrick went
to Australia two years last Candlemas and Mary got married last February
next door to your Aunt Kitty Connell at the Mall [a small settlement
in Cutteen Beg townland, SW of Tulla] to John Molony, son of Dennis
Maloney and to 80£ fortune.
Dear daughter, I was very much troubled not to hear from you this long
time and I was inquiring ever since for you. I lost the address and
did not know where to write. I was ever so glad to hear from you now.
I was in dread something happened to you in the heat of the war. I wonder
you did not send any account about it. We hear there was a great deal
killed there. We got one letter from you these 5 years.
Dear daughter we would be happy enough now but for the loss of your
mother, may the Lord of heaven have mercy on her and forgive her sins.
Your grandfather departed out of this world last summer, may the Lord
have mercy on him and pardon him his sins,
Your brother, Patrick, mentioned that he was doing well and he sent
us 20£ which we did not expect. Dear Sister, the crops are doing
very well these late years, thanks be to God. We have plenty of potatoes
Dear Sister, I hope you will let me know all about the country and to
let me know all the clothes I have to bring. As soon as ever you get
this letter, I hope you will send me an answer and to let me know will
you get it or not.
My dear Sister,
There is none of the family to emigrate now but me, your youngest brother,
Thady O'Neill. I will surely venture to go to Sydney or to America before
this time twelve months with the help of God. Patrick said that he would
free me out if I would go to him. There is very bad accounts coming
out of it. I would be better pleased to go to America but I would not
like without follow my brother for he was worth following him through
fire and water. I send him an account which ever place he would advise
me to go that I would go there. I will shortly have the account and
I would most anxiously wish to see you and your husband so I hope I
will see you all yet with the help of God.
So dear brother, Patrick Welsh [Ellen’s husband], I request of
you to let me know all particulars about the country. How much could
a man spare in a years time or how much per day and to let me know is
it good place for my equals to go there and if you advise go to you
however and Patt might come there and yet that is all I expect thank
I can get enough of money to go there
No more at present but remain loving and affectionate Father, brothers
Thomas O'Neill, Mary, John, Catherine and Thady
From sister Mary Malony, Lisofin recording a number of family deaths including
those of Ellen’s father, sister and grandparents.
Lisofin, December 26, 1873
My dear Sister,
I don't know how to address you after my long silence. I must first
begin and let you know how it happened that I did not answer your letters
it is now nearly four years since I got your letter. Soon after I got
it, it was lost and I could find no trace of it until a few days ago
I found it. Were it not for that I would have written to you long ago.
Me dear sister, I have a good many sad newses to send you after my long
silence when I got your letter first, my father was dead more than a
year. Also my grandfather and grandmother are dead this long time and
my Aunt, James Quinlivan's wife, was buried twelve months last August
and the saddest death of all was the dear of our dear sister, Kate.
She was buried a fortnight after Aunt Kitty. My sister was married three
or four miles from me and was very comfortable, to a man name Patt McNamara.
There is one little child after her, a daughter. She was 16 months old
when her mother died. Her name is Mary Anne. Her husband did not get
married since she died on her second child. She was a strong able young
woman when it was God's will to take her to Himself. She is buried in
Tulla. My brother thought to take her to his own place but we would
not let him. I like to have her buried near where I am living. My dear
sister, I could not tell you how I feel since my poor sister died. I
was so happy to have her living near me but I am sorry to say she was
not left long to me. I got very bad after her death. The priest and
doctor was with me. I will never be the same again. I cannot let her
out of my mind night or day. I must now let you know my brother was
married before his father died to a girl of the Hanrahan's from Ballinruan
and neither of my brothers wrote home since before their father's death
until about a month ago and when I hear of it I went up and
who and it they would but let him see it. I never heard from Mary Sally
since she went but I heard she was married to a smith and doing very
well in some part of America. Your Aunt Kate Hennessy is buried three
years and her family are all married. Her sons is married to the second
wife and living in the old house. Myself and my family are all well
and Aunt Kate's family are all well. All join me in love to you.
Your fond sister,
Give my love and my to all your own family.
From sister Mary with family news
May 12, 1874
My Dear Sister, I received your welcome letter in due course and the
likeness of your daughter. I was very glad to get it and happy to hear
you speak so well of how yourself and your family were going on. You
must think me very negligent in not replying to you much sooner but
I was waiting to hear from my aunt or to see her as she lives seven
or eight miles distance from me now and I had no opportunity of seeing
her but enclosed you will find a little note she sent me to put in the
letter. I had no falling out with my brother, Johnny, but when I went
for to see my brothers' letter, he would not show it to me. You ask
impossibilities my dear sister in asking for father's and sister's likeness.
People who are dead and gone and never got it done during their life.
I have not the likeness of you and your husband but poor Kate brought
it down to show it to me after you sent it but took it back again. I
suppose there is no account of it now. Johnny's wife's father was a
brother of Paddy Hanrahan who live in our street when you were at home.
There was a son of James Quinliven going to New Zealand and he went
up to get the address of my brother Tim and when he got it he brought
it to me and if they knew I would get it they would not let him see
it. I never heard from Mary Sally since she went but I heard she was
married to a smith and doing very well in some part of America. Your
Aunt Kate Hennessy is buried three years and her family are all married
and her son is married to the second wife and living in the old house.
Myself and my family are all well and Aunt Kate's family are all well.
All join me in love to you. Your fond sister,
Give my love to my Aunts and to all your own family.
Michael [Quinliven] took the address. He is his second son and married
His son sent on that . He sent him when he writes home I will send the
From sister Mary re brothers in New Zealand
Lisofin, April 13, 1885
My Dear Sister,
I received your kind and welcome letter on yesterday morning 12th of
April which gave me the greatest pleasure in hearing from you. As I
thought I never would hear from you. You blamed me very much for not
sending you your brother's address. I had not it at that time. I will
tell you the way I got it. I heard after you sending for his address
to me, I heard there did a letter come to my brother John from Teady
and I went up for the address and himself and his wife denied it to
me. He was going to mass. I went over to Michael Hennessy's. They did
not know where to have and I remained there until he came back. I came
back then and he would not give it to me. I came home then and never
stopped crying thinking of my poor father and mother and my sister Catherine
that would have a welcome for me. I heard last summer that you wrote
to him. I met him in Tulla one day. I asked him did he get a letter
from you. He told me that he did. I asked him to bring me your address
and he never did. The way I got Teady's address, Michael Quinlivan was
going out to Australia and he went up for his address, his wife brought
it out to him and he put it in his pocket and brought it to me. I wrote
to him then and answered my letter and send me 10 pounds. He was the
kindest brother I ever had that is six years last Christmas night since
I got that letter. He sent me his address and Patt's. He told me Patt
was 20 miles from him living very happy. He was married and had three
children and Teady was married and had two at that time. He told me
he would send for my eldest son. It was he stood for him before he went.
I have no less than ten or twelve letters wrote to them and never got
an answer for the last six years now. I am going to you send you the
very address send me with fear you might think I would send you the
wrong one. You asked Mary Sally's address but she never wrote a line
since she left home.
Nor neither did Tom Purcell ever write a line too so I cannot send you
their address. There are two neighboring boys after coming home and
they give a great praise of America for any boy that would mind him
he could do well there and they say it is better again for girls. There
are girls gone from here and I could not tell you all the money they
have sent home even for the last two years.
Their people here would not ever hold their house and land but for them.
Dear sister as you say, it is a bad place for boys. If you was so kind
as to send for my eldest girl, I would let her out as I never troubled
you before. I know. If she went to you you would stand a mother to her
as she might be of help to me here at home and she might send for her
brothers as I would not ever able to meet my calls until there would
one or two of them be out. There is nothing blind of her in the line
of needle work and I think she would do well there as she is very anxious
herself to go out to her cousins and then boys are going back again
and more of their brothers going with them. Uncle Teady was here yesterday
coming from mass and read your letter and was very glad to hear from
you. He told me to ask you was Aunt Anne living far from you or how
is the boy that was going to college or did he go back again.
Dear sister, I would like very much to see your picture and your husband's
picture and all of them, but it would be too much trouble to send them
all as I cannot see you any other way as there is a great deal of them
coming home here.
I hope dear sister you won't delay the answer of this letter and let
me know all. I must now conclude by sending you all my sincere love.
Your ever fond sister,
From sister Mary with family news and possibility of Ellen visiting home
Lisofin, Tuesday, 1893
Dear sister Ellen,
I received your very welcomed letter yesterday. I was very glad you
to think of coming home. I would be very anxious to see you. So try
and come, it would be a new life to me again to see a sister.
Dear sister you did not say if any of your daughters were married.
Uncle Dan is still living in New Zealand. He was home here about two
years ago and he is very hardy still. Mary Hennessy is very strong yet.
She is married in Ballinruan to Michael Sheehan. She has one daughter
married and some in America and five in family at home. Mike is married
at home and Bid is married and her husband is buried, her eldest son
is teaching school in Ballinruan and Mr. Hogan pensioned off.
We know nothing about Maggie Carney. Her mother would not speak of her.
We heard she was married to Aunt Anne Son, let us know if it is true.
Brother John is well. He has five in family. I did not get any letter
from brother Tim since my children went out but they tell me he is very
happy. He has got nine children.
Dear sister, write to me often. I do fell so happy to hear from you.
Try and come home for a while. Good-bye from your affectionate sister.
Mrs. Mary Moloney
From Ellen and Pat in Lisofin to children in USA
July 27, 1895
We arrived here safe yesterday and we rode 8 miles in a jauntin' car
and it cost 8s. It has rained ever since we landed and if it keeps this
kind of weather, we will be home soon.
The people here expected us here last Monday. My brothers and cousins
were all here waiting to see us and when we did not arrive, they give
us up. We have a hundred to go to see. They have all been talking about
us before we came and expect us to visit them.
Our fare on the cars was £1.s7.d2 from Derry to Dublin and from
Dublin to Limerick £1.sl and from Limerick to Sixmilebridge s2
and from there s8. It is trying to clear off as I write this. It has
been very warm and dry here in May and June things was all burned up,
but they are getting plenty of rain since then. As soon as the weather
clears up, we are going on a foraging expedition. Miss Ellen Maloney
expects to go to Australia as soon as we go from here.
Having no more to say at present, we are, Dear Children, your loving
Father and Mother,
Pat and Ellen
From sister Mary mentioning death of Ellen’s husband and Mary’s
Lisofin, Feb 19th 1900
I received your letter some few days ago. And I was awfully sorry to
hear of your husband's death. He was so agreeable when here at home
As for myself, I got my own share of trouble. My son, the youngest boy
[John (Jack)] I had was buried last July twelve months in Seguey [Sydney,
Australia] and I am not the same since it went through me so much. He
was two years ailing with indigestion in the stomach. And they lost
all they had with him. So you cannot blame her for writing to you. She
had enough of trouble since she went out. They would not regret it atall
if he recovered, but it all went for nothing.
Brother John is in good health. His daughter Bridget went to America
twelve months ago and she sent them money at Xmas. She met her with
brother John in New Haven and it is there they are now. I have not got
their address at present. If I had it I would send it to you.
We have four children now, 2 boys and two girls. And don't you think,
dear Sister, but I have enough to do nursing them. I am tired out from
nursing them. I am subject to a pain in the back since you went. I get
it very often. I was going to Mass yesterday and on my way I met Katherine
Tailour and I informed her of your husband's death and she went on her
knees praying for him for he often gave her money. I won't forget to
pray for your dear husband and all the souls that departed us. We must
put up with the will of God now. We have nothing to do but to pray for
them. May God have mercy on them.
Mrs. Clancy is left for the past 9 months. She was turned out of her
house for the non payment of rent. And she is in Kilkee now. She set
up a boarding house there. Mrs. Mack sold her house and place and went
to America herself and family and she was not 3 months there when she
returned again. The place did not agree with her. And she is living
with her brother Mike. Mrs. Keehan is in good health and her daughter
Mary got married.
I am expecting a letter from Ellie in a couple of days. She is in the
one hotel since she went and her misses is very kind to her. She is
very much at home with them. Maria removed a bit away from her. They
are twenty miles asunder. I will tell Ellie to write to you from Segney
I hope you will write to me often. It give me courage to hear from you
my own. As we have not any other comfort.
Your affectionate sister,
From brother Patrick, New Zealand telling of New Zealand
Durie Town, Wanganui, [New Zealand] Nov. 1, 1900
My Dear Sister,
I received your letter a few days ago. I was sorry to hear of your husband's
death. Myself, Mrs. O'Neill and family are in the best of health. I
have six in family, four girls and two boys. New Zealand is a fine climate.
We never have any frost nor snow in the winter time. We are getting
on all right. I have two farms about 2000 acres. One of them is leased
for £400 a year and the other we are running ourselves. The most
of the cattle and sheep we rear here are sent to England as frozen meat.
The price of fat bullicks is about £8 each here and sheep 15s.
My occupation for about the last twenty years has been cattle dealing,
buying and selling.
There is good wages here for labourers, tradesmen bout ten shillings
per day and farm labourers about seven shillings. My brother [Tim] and
family are quite well. They are living in the same town as I am. They
have moved from where they were to here two years ago. He has got a
farm of land and also carrying on a butchery business. He is going to
write to you also.
Now about the Moloney family. Maria is married to a blacksmith. He makes
a good living for her, earns about £6 per week. Pat and Ellen
are still single and Jack died about two years ago. He had been in bad
health six months previous to his death.
I have often had a notion of taking a trip to the old country. If I
ever do, I shall call to American to see you. It is just forty years
now since I left Ireland.
New Zealand is a new country. It has not been inhabited more than fifty
years. I came here from the south Island where you addressed your letter
to 14 years ago. I am living in the North Island now. Land here now
is worth from ten pounds up to twenty. If I were to sell all my land
here, it would be worth about fourteen or fifteen thousand pounds.
Our population here is a mixture of Scotch, English and Irish. We have
fine churches and convents here.
The population of the town where we are living is about 10,000.
This is the first of your letters I received.
Write to let us know all about yourself and family and send us your
photos. I am sending you one. It is the only one I have just now.
I will now conclude with kind regards to all.
Your loving brother,
Patrick O’Neill with two of his daughters
From sister Mary, Lisofin with family news
Lisofin, March 31, 1901
My dear Sister,
Your very welcome letter arrived and finds me and all the family well.
I also got the book of pictures so kindly sent by you but didn't get
the little cheque mentioned in your letter. I'd write and answer your
letter sooner, but I was waiting for a letter from Ellie but it didn't
come and I said I'd answer yours without further delay.
My brother John was to see me the other day and he was very glad to
see your letter. His son and daughter, John and Bridget, are in New
Haven and he would be very glad if you would get to see them. Will send
you their address later. All his family are well. I'm killed from nursing
children. We got a big crowd since you was here. We have one more little
girl and two little boys, fine healthy little children. We were all
so sorry for Dear Pop's death [Ellen’s husband, Patrick Welsh]
and we don't forget to pray often for him.
Mrs. Keehan buried her husband since but is very strong and well herself
and family. Mrs. Mack sold out her place and went to America and wasn't
at all satisfied with your country, so she returned again to poor old
Ireland and lives now with her brother, Mike Hennessy, a very discontented
I'm very glad to hear Pat wrote to you and better pleased still to hear
of his intention to visit us. I would be so glad to see him.
Write again soon and don't forget to write to me often. With fond love
to you and all your family, I remain
From sister Mary, Lisofin with family news
Lisofin, April 20 
Dear sister Ellen,
Your letter and picture arrived safely and in due time. It was kind
of yourself and the children to send them to me. We are all very proud
of them and very thankful to you all for sending them. Mary Ellen is
delighted with the dress that's on Katie. She is all the time admiring
it. She is expecting she will send it home to her. The children are
all the time wanting to get the picture. I will have it framed soon.
Everyone thought it a beautiful picture. We have five children now,
two girls and three boys. I have enough to do minding them.
Brother John is in good health. I didn't see any of them since Xmas
so I don't know the children's address. I delayed this letter hoping
some one of them would come down; as soon as I get the address, I'll
send it to you.
You got very stout since you were here. I got thin. John Kearney was
here last week. He said the boy with the moustache is like a brother
of his that came home from America. He is married to a first cousin
of his in Ennis. She lives near where Mrs. Clancy lived.
Mrs. Mack didn't go back since she is living with her brother. She was
her with us for a week.
I didn't hear from Ellie for some time. She often told Frances O'Neill
is going to be married. Last time Maria wrote she said that brother
Tim built a hotel that cost 1,000 pounds. It's a wonder he to be leaving
it. Write soon. Mary Ellen expects her cousin Kate will send her that
dress in the next letter. I do pray for Pop [Patrick Welsh]. He was
so nice when he was here and so fond of the little child.
Denny and Mary are in good health and send you and family their love.
From Mary Cassady, NY, after returning from visiting Ellen
Monday 9 a.m. [c. Dec 1901]
At last I have managed to scribble a few lines to let you know that
I arrived home safely. Had a very pleasant journey and found many waiting
for me. They all very much pleased to see me and thought I must have
received a very kind and agreeable reception to have remained away so
long. I hope Julia [Welsh Strain, Ellen’s daughter] is up and
doing nicely by this time. I thought of her and her boy [Ellen’s
grandson, Joseph Francis Strain, b. 12 October 1901] yesterday and would
have liked very much to have been with you all to drink his health and
prosperity. I hope Joe drank one for me. The folks here and all anxious
to see Anna [Strain, Ellen’s granddaughter]. They think she must
be some thing wonderful as I am such a crank about children. We have
had many a laugh about her. Give her a great big kiss and a hug for
me. I have got to settle down to sewing today the first I have done
since I came home. My eyes still bother me and I found so many other
things to do and this is first attempt I have made to write to anyone
but you. Know they say better late than not at all. I promise today
better next time, and hope you will return good for evil and answer
soon and let me know how everybody is getting along. Kiss the baby for
me and tell Anna I was lonesome when I came home for her. Give my love
to Frank, Kate and Julia and Joe, and keep a large share for yourself.
Also to Joe Welsh and his family. Yours sincerely,
Aunt Mary made me write these few lines to send her best love and wishes
to all, and a big kiss to Anna, and the baby. The girls also join with
her in sending their love.
From niece Frances O’Neill in New Zealand with family news
November 22nd 
My dear Auntie,
Your kind missive to hand by the last mail. I was quite delighted to
hear from you. You were so long in replying to my last letter, I came
to the conclusion that you never got it, so it was a great surprise
to us all. We also got the photo of you. They are very good. My father
[Patrick O’Neill] thinks you have altered such a lot. He would
not know you. I think it is a very nice group taking them on the whole.
We got our photo taken an open air group of the girls. I am going to
send you one. Since I wrote you last we have gone in for hotel keeping
in a place called Ekelatuna, near Wellington. We all like it very much.
It is quite a change from private life. The two boys are on their farms
at Wanganui. I suppose the next thing is they will be getting married
and settling down. Uncle Tim likes gone for hotel keeping also none
of either of the families are married yet. Mother says we are too hard
to be pleased. I am the oldest; had a couple of engagements and broke
them off. When had you my Father's photo last? I will send you one if
I can find one in the house. My sister, Monica, next to me, has been
sick for two years. She has been five months in the Wellington hospital
had an operation of the stomach. Opened up and found inflammation. She
has great pain and is now nearly as bad as ever.
Maria Maloney [Maria Maloney Sheehan, daughter of Ellen’s sister,
Mary] now is living in Cambridge. She has three children, all girls.
There is six in our family, four girls and two boys. They are the youngest.
I see there is six in your family also. My Mother [Margaret Clune O’Neill]
has not being very strong those late years in fact she has been always
delicate. I think you asked if Uncle Dan Connell was still living. Mother
says he is alive still. She was in Melbourne a few years and saw him
then. He was as lively as a cricket then. Dear Aunt have you any notion
of every coming to New Zealand? Do you live right in the town Philadelphia?
How I would like to go to see you. What a lovely trip it would be. However,
I must live in hop, collar someone with plenty of money and go on a
honeymoon trip, how nice it would be. I do delight in travelling. We
take a holiday in turn every year to some part or another. It is scarcely
a month since [until] Christmas, so I hope I am the first to wish you
all a very happy Christmas. I do not suppose you will get this better
then in any case. Are all your daughters married, Aunt? I do not think
you told us and of course I must inquire after the sons also. I suppose
you will think I am a bit of a hard case. My mother is very lively and
we all take after her, but they all tell me I am the picture of my Father,
so you will be able to judge when you get them by the way I sent you
one of mine and the girls when you first wrote to me. Did you ever get
them. Let me know in your next letter if you got them. Reply to this
letter by return of mail. We are so delighted to hear from you. Father
does not do much writing so you must excuse him. It is all the same
I will give you all the news. I must conclude from with love from all
to all and wishing you the compliments of the season, I remain,
Your loving niece,
Frances M. O'Neill
From niece Frances O’Neill in New Zealand with family news
Durietown, Wanganui, January 23, 1902
My Dear Aunt,
Your nice kind letter of November 5th to hand some time and quite delighted
to hear from you. I thought that you were not going to reply to my missive,
the time seemed so long. I also received the photo of your cousins.
They are very nice indeed, but Dear Aunt, we would like very much to
have one of yourself or else one of the family. We would be so pleased.
You never said if you received one of mine and two of my sisters taken
together. I often wondered if you did get them.
Father has been away superintending the shearing at one of the stations.
He is home now. He is going to write to you. Uncle Tim said he wrote
last to you some years ago and you never replied to it. They are going
to go hotel keeping next month to Hawera, that is 60 miles from this
town. We will miss them very much indeed. Father would like very much
to see you. He is always talking about you although he does not write
very often. Have you any notion of ever coming to see us? What a lovely
trip it would be. Maria Maloney (Mrs. Sheehan) is now living in Auckland.
Dear Aunt, how many sons have you in your family? Are the girls the
eldest? I am the eldest of our family, four girls and the two boys the
youngest. We are all very tall, five feet ten is my height, of course
father is tall. He is quite fat and a little grey but quite fresh looking
and Uncle Tim is thin and wirey and lots of wrinkles. They are not a
bit alike. Father tells us you were tall and good looking, so we would
like a photo very much. Father often says he will go to see you. I do
not know if he means it or not. I will conclude as Father is going to
write. With love from all to all and wishing you all a happy new year.
I forgot to say I got all the papers and many thanks.
From your loving niece,
Frances M. O'Neill
From brother Tim in New Zealand informing her of brother Patrick’s
Wanganui, [New Zealand,] July 23, 1908
After a long absence from writing to you, I have desired to send you
these few lines hoping that they may find you enjoying good health as
it leaves me and all my care, thank God. I am very sorry for to have
to let you know of brother Pat's death. He died on the 7th of February
last, may God rest his soul. He was never sick a day in his life to
my knowledge and he did not have the slightest idea of death after he
took bad, as he wanted the family to hurry up and get down to the train
and he would be down in a few minutes, as they were leaving Napier that
morning for Wanganui as he had sold out in Napier and was coming to
live to Wanganui. And I had sold out at Hawera and was also coming to
live to Wanganui where we both had a lot of land and the sons were living
on it, but to my great sorrow, I have lost his company in Wanganui,
but I hope to have it in heaven.
He was very fat. He weighed 18 or 19 stone. I weigh 13 stone. He died
of a paralytic stroke. I got there 36 hours after it happened but he
was unconscious until he died after three days in that state. We fetched
him to Wanganui to be buried.
From brother Tim in NZ re hotels, farming and family in New Zealand
Wanganui, [New Zealand,] August 30, 1908
You can see by this note paper, I was keeping a hotel at Hawera. I was
there for six years. It is a good business here, but prohibition is
getting strong and I was safer out of the business in that district.
I got ten thousand pounds for the hotel property which I believe would
be about fifty thousand dollars, which was too much to risk. Brother
Pat left his family well off. He was worth over forty thousand pounds.
I feel very lonely after him. He was the best brother ever left Ireland
and the same as husband and father. Everyone who knew him respected
him, may God rest his soul.
This is a very good country and a splendid climate. The heaviest frost
is not thicker than the smallest silver coin and no snow except on top
of the mountains which is 14,000 feet high at one part on the South
Island. The highest temperature is 80 in the summer, so you see it is
not very hot or very cold. The boys are all farming. Tom, the eldest,
has a farm with 5000 acres. It is all sheep. We keep on it no tillage
unless enough for our own use. It carries three sheep to the acre, something
like the sheep you would see in Ireland. It keep them winter and summer,
that is the best feature of this country. You want no winter feed, two
men with Tom can manage the lot. The people very much vary in their
occupations here, maybe a farmer one year, a draper next, a barber next
and so on. My son Pat has a farm of his own and Teady and Johnny are
partners in another place, all sheep farms. Any person with any brain
in this country never work for wages. They all start on their own; they
borrow some money if they got none of their own to commence with, but
there is plenty here has done no good and never will either, bad luck,
bad management or too much whisky. The Moloney's (Mary's sons) has not
done much good. The youngest, Jack, died about 8 years ago of an ulcerated
stomach. Pat is still in the gold fields about 200 miles from here,
has not saved much money. I was looking after him until I thought he
had £400 or £500 pound saved when I wanted him to invest
this money where he would double it in six months. To my great surprise,
he had none. He had it all spent. This is fifteen years ago. He left
the district and have not seen him since, but hear from him. The two
daughters are married, the oldest is none to well. Of Ellen, the youngest,
is all right. Got a good husband.
Their is none of my family married. The youngest, Francis Joseph, is
going to the college school. We got a photo of the group which I will
send to you taken last Christmas in Hawera.
That coloured gentleman that said he knew me and brother Pat must be
a fraud. He did not know us at all. We never lived in Wellington. He
did not ever see either of us. Would it be any use to ask you to come
over here to avoid the winter in America. You could have three summers
in succession and I may go back with you. Pat's family is in this town.
It is a small town about 1200 of a population.
Hoping sincerely that this long looked for letter will find you enjoying
good health and all your family and let me know if you got any word
from Ireland and if brother Johnny is still living. Pat was always strong
and healthier than I was. I cannot use any meat. It disagrees with me
but can eat eggs and butter all right.
I will say good bye Remain your brother,
From Frances in NZ to Rose Welsh Bell re Ellen's death
43 Campbell Street, Wanganui, Dec. 17, 1908
My dear Cousin [Roseanna Welsh Bell],
Your letter to hand gave us a big shock recording the sad death of my
Aunt [Ellen]. I thought by your last letter that she must be very unwell
but we never expected her death; her death has upset my mother. There
was only about six month between my Father [Patrick] and Aunt. Uncle
Tim received his letter the same mail. I think he must be the only member
of the family left. He gets very good health so far. He also got a letter
from some of his nieces later. As for me, getting a letter from any
of them they never reached me. The only correspondents is yourself now
that poor Aunt is gone. Of course they may be mislaid when we moved
from Napier. I would be only too pleased to hear from any of them. If
I have any I may scare a trip to America and then you will have the
pleasure of seeing the writer. I am sending you some papers with results
of the world's champion sculling race. I am sure you will be very much
interested in it. The race was one sided as you will see by the places
of the course post cards I will enclose also. My mother has been ill
for this last three weeks. She gets very delicate health - chest complaint.
Uncle Tim has sent a group of his family. I hope you will have received
by now, in conclusion, I wish you all the compliments of the season
and a bright and happy New Year.
From your affectionate cousin,
43 Campbell St.
Wanganui, New Zealand
Rose & John Bell
Two letters to Rose Welsh Bell on the death of her sister Julia Welsh
[These two letters refer to Julia Ellen Welsh Strain’s
5735 Malclom St.
My dear Rose,
I was grieved and shocked when my cousin Irene (Mrs. Rowland) phoned
the sad news. On account of illness, a very severe cold, I fear it will
be impossible to attend the funeral.
My sister joins me in love and sincere sympathy and will you please
extend same to Joe and the other members of the family. I will surely
remember Jule in my poor prayers. Hoping you are well and will be brave.
I am with love
St. Patrick's Convent
630 DeKalb St.
My dear Friend,
Needless to tell you how shocked I was to hear of your dear sister's
death. Truly we are here to-day and gone to-morrow. I need not tell
you that if human sympathy can in any way assuage your grief, you certainly
have mine. Of course you have the greatest of all consolations in the
knowledge that she always led a good life, and after all that is what
counts in eternity.
Kindly extend my sympathy to Mr. Strain, Anna and Joseph, also to the
other members of your family. I shall remember her very especially in
my prayers, Masses, and Holy Communions. May He who has placed this
cross on your shoulders, give you courage and grace to bear it with
merit for your own hereafter and the hope of again meeting in a happy
eternity comfort you. The prayer of
Yours in sympathy
Sr. M. Boniface, I.H.M.
Julia Welsh Strain (right) with her daughter Anna Virginia and mother
From Frances O'Neill visiting San Francisco to Joseph Strain
Sept. 15th 
Dear Cousin Joseph,
You will see by this letter that I have arrived in America just a week
and love the place. It is just beautiful. I will be here about a month
and then I will go to see you. My long promise will come at last. I
am most anxious to see you all. I have a friend from Wellington with
me and also another lady and her daughter with us, so we are quite able
to enjoy San Francisco. I had a letter of introduction to a gentleman
in the Union bank. His sister is a neighbour of ours in Wanganui, so
she was kind enough to have me call on him. He has been so kind to us
and took us out a good deal. The weather has just been delightful since
we arrived here as pleasant after all the rain we had in New Zealand.
It just poured for several weeks before I left so we do appreciate the
sunshine. I do hope when we arrive in Philadelphia you will treat us
with good weather. You will have my letter by now. It came on the same
boat. As I told you I made up my mind in a hurry to come or else I would
have written sooner. Uncle Tim is most anxious I should find you out.
We are told that it will take us four days to go to New York. I have
no idea how far you are living from there or how long it will take in
the train, but we will find out. I would like you very much to write
to my before I leave here and give us more information about our travels,
if you would be so kind enough. Joseph where are all the rest of cousin
Julia's sisters and brothers? Is any of the others any near so I could
go and see them. I would like so much to see you all before I return
to N.Z. Well dear cousin, I will be looking forward to a letter by return
of mail, so will conclude with fond regards to all. I remain your fond
Joseph & Julia Strain
From Frances O’Neill to cousin Rose Welsh Bell on Frances’
return to NZ after US trip
Write by return 43 Campbell St.
of mail Wanganui,
January 22, 1920
I arrive home a week ago in Auckland and then had to go a train journey
for a day and night. We had a very rough trip. We got the cyclone and
it last several days, so we had to slow down. I was very sick. It was
a miserable Christmas. I was thinking of you all. I was so ill I could
not eat any dinner. We were too crowded, three in each cabin. We got
it pretty hot when we were getting near the equator. It lasted for about
six days and gradually got cool again. Lots were sleeping on deck but
I would rather stay in my cabin which was on deck. We were lucky that
way. I found all the family well. My brother Patrick is away in Sydney
with his wife, so I have not seen them yet. I see by the paper that
you have got prohibition for good. It will come hard on your brother,
Joe. He thought it would not come. I am sorry if it does him harm. I
am afraid we will get it next time here. We own the freehold of a hotel
and we have it leased for a term of years. We are trying to sell it.
Another party of New Zealanders are getting ready to go to America in
March. They want my sister Margaret to go with them. She has not made
up her mind as yet. I wrote you from San Francisco. I suppose you were
angry with me for not returning. I got a letter from home and they rather
I came back and then I had not time to go out again. I had to catch
the boat. Uncle O'Neill is quite himself again. He is in Wellington
for a week attending races. He used to own horses. How are all the Blanche's?
I was so sorry I did not see Frank. You never know I may see you all
soon again. I will go on my honeymoon. When travelling from New York
to Frisco when we left Philadelphia, we had snow right through to Sacramento.
It was wonderful. We had a light horse Australian mounted, a Captain,
doctor of dentistry wore a feather in his hat. He was in Philadelphia
for 2 months. His navie was Captain Mitchell. He was right through with
us to N.Z. and then to Perth. You may have seen him lots of the men
would call out "Fellow Osie". They knew by the feather. Well,
dear cousin, I must conclude by wishing you all a happy new year. Your
fond cousin, Frances O'Neill
The O’Neill Family of Scalpnagown
Thomas O'Neill (1804-1869) was born Scalpnagown,
Co. Clare. He married Bridget Connell of Derrymore West, Tulla on 23 Feb
1829 in Tulla. Bridget died on 09 Dec 1854 in Scalpnagown. Thomas and
Bridget had the following children:
Mary O'Neill was born in 1831 in Scalpnagown and died in Tulla. She married
John Moloney, son of Denis Moloney and Bridget Daly on 06 Feb 1864 in
Ballinruan, Co. Clare. John was born and died in Tulla. Mary kept in contact
with Ellen and there are a number of letters from her in the collection.
Ellen Bridget O'Neill was born on 23 Dec 1835 in Scalpnagown
and emigrated to the United States before March 1854. She came to her
Aunt Ann Connell - who was married to Peter Higgins - and resided on Gay
Street in Manayunk, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She died on 06 Sep 1908
in Manayunk. She married Patrick Francis Welsh, son of Richard and Rose
Anna Welsh on 11 Nov 1856 in St. John's, Manayunk. Patrick was born on
10 Nov 1827 in Philadelphia and died on 28 Dec 1899 in Manayunk. Ellen
and Patrick returned to Ireland in July 1895 for a short visit. Ellen
and Patrick had thirteen living children. Letters from two of their children
are included in this collection – from Rose Anna who married John
T Bell and from Julia Ellen who married Joseph Strain.
John O'Neill was born in 1836 in Scalpnagown and died
on 22 Aug 1932 in Scalpnagown. He married Jude Hanrahan in 1876 in Ballinruan,
Co. Clare. Jude was born in 1841 in Ahish, Ballinruan and died on 21 Mar
1933 in Scalpnagown.
Patrick O'Neill was born in 1840 in Scalpnagown and died
on Feb 1908 in Napier, New Zealand. He married Margaret Clune on 25 Feb
1873 in Greymouth, New Zealand. Margaret was born in 1850 in Scalpnagown
and died on 21 Jun 1918 in Wanganui, New Zealand. A letter from Patrick
to Ellen in 1900 is included in the collection. Patrick and Margaret’s
daughter, Mary Frances, known as Frances, (1873-1938) kept up the correspondence
with Ellen's family. She traveled to the United States in late 1919. Her
Aunt Ellen was dead at that time but she visited Rose Welsh Bell in Manayunk.
Timothy O'Neill was born in 1846 in Scalpnagown and died
19 Feb 1923 in New New Zealand. He married Mary Ryan on 23 Jul 1874 in
Reefton, New Zealand. Mary was born in 1853 in Carrackittle, Co. Limerick
and died on 19 Sep 1918 in Wanganui, New Zealand. There are two letters
from Tim to Ellen in the collection.
Catherine O'Neill was born in 1847 in Scalpnagown and
died in Aug 1872 in Tulla. She married Patrick McNamara
Thaddeus O'Neill was born in 1848 in Scalpnagown.