Person:Michael Reid (6)

Michael Reid
  1. John ReidAbt 1821 - 1887
  2. Maria ReidAbt 1822 -
  3. William Reid1823 -
  4. Ellen Reid1825 -
  5. Martha Reid1827 -
  6. Catherine Reid1828 -
  7. Joseph Reid1830 -
  8. Bridget Reid1832 -
  9. Michael Reid1833 - 1918
  10. Theresa Reid1835 - 1913
  11. Ann Reid1837 -
  12. Agnes Reid1839 - 1901
  13. Patrick Reid1842 -
Facts and Events
Name Michael Reid
Gender Male

Michael Reid's origins have yet to be established. Some of his children emigrated to New York, and in a number of records there they reported that their father had been born in Ireland. Michael's first confirmed sighting is in 1823, by which time he was married to Mary Dennan. Between 1823 and 1842 Michael and Mary had eleven children baptised at Monasterevin, County Kildare. It also appears they had at least two more children prior to this who may well also have been baptised at Monasterevin, but the Catholic parish registers there only began in 1819 and the first couple of years of the register are badly faded to the point of illegibility.

Michael apparently worked on Monasterevin's Catholic Church of St Peter and St Paul, which was built in the late 1840s. According to Michael's grandson (Ellen's son) William MacDonald's obituary, Michael designed and built "Monasterevin Cathedral" - presumably meaning the town's new Catholic Church of St Peter & St Paul.[1] Whilst it is plausible that Michael may have been involved in building the church, the architect of the building is known to have been a William Deane Butler. However, the quality of the masonry is particularly noted in the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage: "...the church is closer in appearance to the French medieval cathedrals than was originally planned... The construction of the church in limestone ashlar with cut-limestone dressings is an excellent example of the high quality of stone masonry practised in the locality. The carved detailing has retained a crisp intricacy and includes surrounds to the openings with colonettes and good mouldings, together with an imposing cross finial to the apex of south-west front... The exposed timber roof construction to the nave and apse is of technical or engineering merit..."[2]

In the early 1850s Michael's sons Joseph and Michael and daughter Theresa emigrated to New York. Around 1854 Michael's wife Mary and her children Maria, Ann, Agnes and Patrick joined them, and in 1855 Mary described herself in the New York census as a widow. As no evidence has been found to suggest that Michael went to New York, it seems likely that he died in Ireland before Mary and the younger children emigrated. Deaths were not registered in Ireland until 1864, and burials were not recorded at Monasterevin at that time.

  1. Slater's Commercial Directory of Ireland, 1846, for Monasterevin: "There is also now erecting a large Catholic chapel, which promises to be of great elegance when completed."
  2. Buildings of Ireland, accessed 17 Sep 2014