Each week we will profile a family with its roots in the Clontarf area. Since there has already been some interest, we will start with the Reardon family. The following was taken from an entry in the Swift County History book published in 1979:
Henry and Bridget Reardon
Henry Reardon and his wife, Bridget, were both born in Dublin, Ireland. They both left Ireland at the time of the potato famine, about 1845. They went to Australia separately and met and were married in Melbourne, Australia. Then they left for America and landed in New York where they stayed for a time. In a few years they decided to move west and bought horses and a wagon which took them as far as the Mississippi River. Here they hired a boat which took them north to Minnesota. They settled first in Credit River, Prior Lake area in 1855.
In 1876 they and several other families moved to Clontarf Township, in Swift County. Henry and his wife Bridget settled in Section 2 of what is now Tara Township. Henry made several trips to and from Credit River moving other families to the Clontarf area.
Henry and Bridget had the following children: Andrew, Robert, John (Catherine Hogan), Henry (Sarah Byrne), Hannah (Michael Donovan), Mary(Long), Meg (Vorwick), Bridget (Ledwidge), and Thomas (Bridget McElgunn).
From this information, the Reardons arrived very early in Clontarf, before the colonization efforts by Bishop Ireland had begun in earnest. The Reardon family is typical of many of the immigrant settlers in that Clontarf was not their first stop in America. The Reardons had quite a journey – Dublin to Melbourne to New York to Credit River to Clontarf.
Dominic McDermott, who ran the first lumber yard in Clontarf and a general store also came from Credit River. I believe Father Oster, the first parish priest in Clontarf, was in Credit River for a time as well. Do you know of any other Clontarf families who came from Credit River?
Just a note – Tara Township was originally part of Clontarf Township. It became its own entity in 1878. Tara is west of Clontarf.
If you are a Reardon from Clontarf, we would like to hear from you! Please add a comment.