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Sunday, August 14, 2011

Someone's Ancestor Sunday - Dennis Maxwell Duffy

Recently, I received an inquiry email from a living individual (who will remain anonymous out of respect for privacy) about Dennis M. Duffy.  His name apparently cropped up during this person's research into the Kennedy District mining area of Nevada.

The email prompted me to see if this was the same Dennis Maxwell Duffy who was the son of Philip Duffy and Katie Duffy (Catherine Maxwell).  He is one in the same.  I suppose it should not come as much of a surprise since Nevada was not very populated in the late 1800s. This part of Northern Nevada isn't very populated even today.  Dennis Maxwell Duffy was an attorney, was married to Clara Grace Blossom for a time, and was my great grandmother's first cousin.  I have found Dennis living out at the family home on Big Ranch Road, Napa, California in at least one census.

From what I have read about Clara Grace Blossom's family land ownership in the Kennedy District area of Nevada, it is quite the story with a bit of scandal.  It would appear that Dennis Maxwell Duffy, who was an attorney out of San Francisco, represented his wife's interests in her family land.  I also found that eventually Dennis and Grace (as she was addressed) were divorced.  I found Dennis living in Napa and then San Francisco with his second wife by 1920 and 1930.

What seems to be a quieter note is that Dennis and Grace had a daughter named Grace Dorothy Duffy.  She was born in 1903 in Napa and died there in 1928.  I wonder what her story is.  While she had a brief life, it would appear that she lived with or on the property with her grandparents, Philip and Katie Duffy.

While the Duffy's aren't my direct line, they are cousins who lived within just a couple of miles of their relatives including my Flanagan's and McLaughlin's (including Ellen Maxwell).  I have yet to find a Duffy from this direct line currently researching their family but hope to find someone someday.  Who knows what treasures they have saved.

Here's to Someone's Ancestor Sunday.  While the Duffy's are somewhat distant relatives to me, they are specific people's ancestors and are connected to my family line.

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