I received a comment a couple of weeks ago from Ian, who is a descendant of Margaret Shea and Thomas Dailey. He was curious if I had any information on these families. Here’s an excerpt from his comment:
I was wondering if in your research you have come across any information on residents in Clontarf by the name of Shea or Dailey.
I am a descendant of Thomas E. Dailey, (born July 1, 1854 ?; died in December 1925 in Great Falls, Montana), married Margaret Shea at Clontarf, Swift county, MN in 1882.
I do not know however if my ancestors lived in Clontarf or in Benson (or somewhere in between). We have an album of photos dating from the end of the 19th century. Many are studio photos from the R. E. Brandmo photo studio in Benson. Judging by the quality, number and their clothing, they were relatively well to do.
It appears that Thomas and Margaret had a number of children in Benson/Clontarf area before moving to Montana; Francis Veronica (my great grandmother, married Patrick Kenny and moved to Montana as a school teacher), as well as Agnes, Michael, Thomas, Alice and Mary Ellen.
I recognize the Shea family name from the plat maps in Tara Township, and I’ve encountered Michael Shea in a couple of places – notably the Clontarf Township records and the McDermott General Store Ledger. The 1880 US Federal Census indicates that Maggie Shea, age 21, is living with her parents (Michael and Alice) and siblings (James-20, Thomas-19, Nancy-16, John-15, Mary-13, and Alice-9.)
The first six of the Shea children were born in Wisconsin, and in 1860, the young Shea family was living in Alto, Fond du Lac county, Wisconsin. The family includes James Shea, aged 70 – presumably Michael’s father (Ian – your great-great-great grandfather?)
In 1880 Thomas Dailey lived in Marysland Township (south of Tara) with his younger sister Julia; Thomas farmed and Julia kept house. Margaret Shea and Thomas Dailey were married at St. Malachy Catholic Church on August 30, 1882. The witnesses were John Cahill and Mary Dailey. In 1900 the Dailey family lived in Benson, Minnesota where Thomas Dailey’s occupation is listed as “fire insurance.” By 1910, the family has moved to Great Falls, Montana.
On the 1886 Tara plat map, , the Shea family owned the south half of section 32. Michael, the father had 80 acres, son James another 80, and son Thomas, 160. On the 1902 map, no Shea names are found, but Margaret Dailey’s name appears on the 80 acres once belonging to her father.
Please share any information you might have on these families…feel free to leave a comment or contact me directly by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A couple of messages:
- Ian – I would check with the Swift County Museum for more information on the Dailey family. Let me know if you would like copies of census showing the Shea and Dailey families – I can send them to you if you don’t have them.
- Margo – remember when you asked me about the Shea family and possible connections to the McGeary family…were they in Fon du Lac county in Wisconsin?