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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Irish Settlement – Newport, New York – Part 3

From what I understand of Irish immigrants in United States in the 19th century, discrimination and exclusion ran rampant. In my quest to find out more about the Irish Settlement of Newport, New York, I find little to no mention of it in writings from the 19th century. The 19th Century Newport information available online seems to talk about the British settlers and all that they did for the area once the “Crown” left the USA. I have found some information about the Irish Settlement online that has been written in the past twenty years but nothing in an official capacity. The closest I’ve found is written by a McLaughlin. I know that there are some published books out there.

I recently found some interesting information about Irish v. Scots-Irish in the United States that I really need to sit down and read. I had someone refer to my Maxwell surname as Scots-Irish. I now think that may not be correct or at least debatable. Scots-Irish are considered to be Protestants, not Catholics. My Maxwell’s were Roman Catholic. I will need to look into this topic further.

This leads me to my next topic about Newport’s Irish Settlement. My Irish immigrant families were Catholic. It was very much a part of their lives. I do respect that so much. These days people are not as inclined to hang on with the Catholic Church. I will leave it at that as I don’t want to make this blog about religion but rather about how my ancestors lived.

In 1839, St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Church was built in Newport/Schuyler, New York. I’ve read other information that it is in the Town of Newport. Everything I’ve seen about my relatives indicates it does in fact have a Newport, New York address. The Village of Newport organized St. John's Roman Catholic Church in 1864. Mass was held in a house that was previously used by the Methodists.

A McLaughlin cousin has written a wonderful article about the history of these two churches and it can be found at http://herkimer.nygenweb.net/newport/stpatrick.html, History Of St. Patrick's and St. John's Parish. The article mentions several of my ancestors including Patrick McLaughlin, James Gartland, Thomas McLaughlin, Thomas Fox, Michael McLaughlin and James McLaughlin. It also mentions others who link into my tree like Michael Mahardy along with Spain’s, McMahon’s, Ward’s, and Daly’s. I don’t specifically have a McMahon on my tree but I find that family as sponsors along the way for baptisms. There’s some very interesting history in the article.

Another pertinent piece of information is that there were cemeteries for the Catholic churches. I have ancestors that were buried in both Old St. Patrick’s and at St. John’s Cemeteries. It is wonderful that someone has taken the time to post this information online.

To be continued……………

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