Facts and Events
Julia Hanlon's origins are unknown. Her first confirmed sighting is in 1844, by when she was already married to a John Reid with whom she would have seven children. Family tradition has it that John and Julia moved around extensively as John worked building the railways, and this seems to be supported by the baptisms of their children. Baptisms for six of their seven children have been located, in six different counties, generally close to where major railway projects were underway.
In 1844 the family was living at Carlow, County Carlow - where the Great Southern and Western Railway's Dublin to Carlow line was under construction at the time. In 1846 the family was living at Bracknagh in the parish of Clonbulloge, County Offaly, just a couple of miles north of Monasterevin, County Kildare, where the River Barrow viaduct on the Great Southern and Western Railway's Dublin to Cork and Limerick line was being built. In 1848 the family was at Donaghmoyne, County Monaghan, where the Dundalk & Enniskillen Railway was under construction - and the following year they were at Dundalk, County Louth, the terminus of the same line. In 1851 the family was at Drumcree in County Armagh, where the rail junction at Portadown was under construction. By 1853 the family was living in Dublin. The one child for whom no baptism has yet been found, William, claimed in the 1911 census to have been born in County Armagh in about 1858.
By 1872, Julia and John were living in Dublin, as were most of their children. Their daughter Maria married in 1870, followed by Margaret in 1872 and Rosanna in 1875. Both Margaret's and Rosanna's marriages record that Julia and John were living at 8 Lower Kevin Street, Dublin.
By the mid 1880s, Julia and John had moved out of Dublin to Monasterevin, County Kildare. When their son Michael died in 1885, John had to secure a grant of administration, which described him as a bricklayer of Monasterevin. John died in 1887, aged 66. In 1888, Julia secured a grant of administration for her late husband's estate, which described her as living at Monasterevin.
Julia later moved in with her daughter Rosanna, who lived at 19 Stephen Street in Dublin. Julia died there on 25th October 1896. Her death certificate says she was 66, although this must be an underestimate, given that her first known child was baptised in 1844. More likely she was in her early 70s. She was buried back at Monasterevin, where John had died. A notice was placed in Freeman's Journal about her death, with a note asking American paper to copy the notice; two of Julia's children had emigrated to New York.