Family:Michael Dowd and Catherine O'Keeffe (1)

Facts and Events
Marriage? 11 July 1893 Limerick, County Limerick, Republic of IrelandSt. Alphonsus Church

Michael Dowd, widower, married Catherine O'Keeffe, daughter of Michael O'Keeffe on 11 July 1893 in St. Alphonsus Church. The witnesses were John Butler and Michael's 16 year old daughter from his first marriage, Katie. At the time of the marriage, the family's address was 14 Roxboro Road, Limerick. Michael and Catherine would have six surviving children and Catherine would effectively raise the two-three youngest children of Michael's first wife, Mary (Bridget, born 1886, who may not have survived to adolescence; Mary, born 1887; and Annie, born 1890). Michael and Catherine's children were born in 1894 (John Joseph), 1895 (Elizabeth Mary), 1897 (Michael Patrick), 1900 (James Joseph), 1902 (a stillborn), 1903 (Eva), and 1905 (Catherine). The address listed on Michael's 1897 birth registration was 25 Roxboro Road but by Eva's birth in 1903 they were living on Quarry Road, some distance across Limerick, and across the River Shannon, in Thomondgate, St. Munchin's parish.

The family living together on the 1901 census included Michael and Catherine and the following children: Philip (aged 24, unmarried, also a cattle dealer), Margaret (16, scholar), Mary (14, scholar), Anne (11, scholar), John (7, scholar), Elizabeth (5, scholar), Michael (4), James (9 months). All the children up to Anne could both read and write, while John and Elizabeth could read but not yet write. Their school is currently unknown.

Michael's elder daughters emigrated to New York in the 1890s. Johanna in April of 1899 on the S.S. Umbria and Kate had preceded her there as she was listed as Johanna's destination household.

Michael died of pneumonia, aged 50, after an illness of 10 days, on 9 November 1906 at the family's then address of 17 Quarry Road in Thomondgate, Limerick. His death likely threw the family into some turmoil and almost all of his surviving children from both marriages would subsequently leave for New York (the exceptions being his eldest son Philip, his daughter Maggie, and his youngest daughter Catherine).

By 1908 Margaret had married Thomas Hehir of Carry's Road, Limerick. Mary had immigrated to America, settling at 1038 Bergen Street, Brooklyn, while Annie was working as a waitress in Kilkee, on the coast in County Clare. On 3 October 1909, Annie left Ireland via Queenstown to join Mary in Brooklyn.

Catherine's son John made the voyage on the S.S. Arabic in September 1910 and by this time his mother had left Quarry Road and was living, presumably with or near Maggie on Carry's Road. John joined his half-sister Mary Dowd, who was living at 995 Myrtle Street in Brooklyn, very possibly still with Annie, who married from 638 Myrtle Street three and a half years later.

Michael sailed on the S.S. Lapland in November 1914 (at which time his mother Catherine is back living in Thomondgate) to join the household of his half-sister Annie, Mrs. Vaughan.

James, known as Jim in America, left Ireland on the S.S. Celtic in February 1921. While he died childless, he was in contact with Annie's children from her second marriage well into the 20th century.

Eva seems to have been the last to leave for America, immigrating in October 1922 on the S.S. Scythia. At that time her mother was living at 1 Dominick Street in Limerick and Eva joined her brother John at 11 Nostrand Avenue in Brooklyn.