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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Patrick Flanagan - Part 7

Pat Flanagan to Michael Flanagan.
December 20 - 95

Brother Mike

For once your Lady (Kate Flanagan) correspondent tells you the truth I am not in good health about a year ago dispepsia began upon me I was very poorly all winter but at the time I wrote to you last I felt a good deal better and thought I was going to get well I believe that was in March or April I improved a good deal for a little while so did not mention it in my letter to you with the advance of the summer got bad again the stommach entirely refusing duty so that I have been starving slowly in a plentiful country besides that I have been in constant pain. In September I went over to Tomalies Bay thinking the salt air and the salt water might work a change stopped a week with some improvement came on to rain which drove us home. Mrs McNemey at this timeorganized a camping out party herself paying all expenses the boys wanted her to have a good time she invited me to go and I went of course taking my own Team and waggon went to Lake County visited many of the springs but upon the whole the trip rather tired me out the others were young people and we could not rest but kept going all the time so the thing was not much benefit to me I am now just come home from St Marys hospital I spent one week there not having any faith in the doctors of Napa I thought I would find out what it was I was afraid it might be some tumors or cancerous growth but the doctors of St Marys said the coud find nothing of the sort I did not think their medecine did me much good so I came home again I am very thin and weak it is possible the thing may fetch me yet although I have not lost hope I would like to go over to see Nicholas for a week or two the change of air might help besides that I would like to see them before I die if I am goin to I do not know at present whether I can manage it or not, for fear I should go you must make the books even between us for the present life and death are in the hands of God welcome be it either ways.....................

Patt Flanagan"

The next letter is so touching and is the last correspondence from Pat to Ireland.

Pat Flanagan (Napa) to Michael Flanagan.
January 17 [1896]

Dear Brother Mike
for a better brother you have been to me than I have been to y I must now bid you a long fairwell for the chances of any recovery on my part are nothing The despepsey turned to Dropsey the doctor has tapped me and taken out a large quantity of matter but I am afraid I was to weak by the time it was done that I have no chance of recovry I hope between you an me there will be the best of feeling and that you will forgive me all the differences we ever had I am not able to go on
Patt Flanagan"

Patrick Flanagan died nine days after writing this letter. In Kate's letter to Michael Flanagan after Pat's death, she goes into great detail about Pat's illness and some other facts that I could not find before this letter. The letter is dated February, 13, 1896.

"Dear Mike
I know it will be a great consolation to hear what a most peaceful and happy death Pat died. There could be nothing more edifying than the way he resigned himself to the Lords will, when he knew he was going, I might say that he did nothing from the time he was anointed but praise and thank the merciful God, who had granted him so long a time to prepare to meet him. In fact he was longing to go, not that he suffered so much towards the last, but he seemed all at once to see things in a different way to what he ever did before and became as humble as a little child, acknowledging his past mistakes calling himself stupid and foolish for not seeing it before. In fact his contrition and gratitude to the Almighty seemed to know no bounds."

Patrick had been at St. Mary's Hospital diagnosed with liver cancer. The letter also indicates that he was never quite the same after Anges' death. I did not notice in any of the other letters that Agnes had passed away. I have her date of death as April 1895. Apparently Patrick ran for an elected office but did not win at some point in the 1890s. The election process took a toll on him. After Patrick's death, Kate and her sons took over the operation of the Flanagan Ranch.

I again drove past the Flanagan Ranch in Carneros on July 22, 2010, with my mom on the way to Bodega Bay. We again did not stop. I caught my glimpse of the place though and now know more history of the my Flanagan Family who lived there.

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