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Saturday, August 11, 2012

McGuire - New York City - Part 1

Well, there they are.  Charles and Sarah McGuire are indicated in the U.S. 1870 Census in New York City Ward 5 District 8.  Are these my great great grandparents?   I have looked at this record many times and wondered.  As I've indicated previously, looking over a record a second or even a third time after some time has past, may give you perspective.  I suppose this time is no different.   I have searched my Charles McGuire and Sarah McGrath on a few occasions and found them....maybe.

New York City is a big place and it was "big" on a relative scale to other cities of 1870.  The fact of the matter is that it was probably the largest city besides Boston in the USA during this time-frame.   Let's just say that most immigrants arrived in NYC during the time-frame in which I seek my Irish Catholic immigrant ancestors.

So, have I found my ancestors?  Given the fact that my great grandfather, Francis Joseph McGuire, was not born until 1 August 1878, means that he does not show up in the 1870 census.  He seems to be the youngest of the children in this McGuire Family.  I will get to him soon in the 1880 U.S. Census but for now I am stuck in 1870.

This particular Charles McGuire was a private coachman in 1870 who had been born in Ireland.  He's 35 years old at this time so he was born around 1835.  His wife's name is Sarah.  She is employed at a "Fancy Store" at the age of 32 with $300 worth of personal estate and is from England.   What?  Yes, the census says England.  Did I find the correct people?  I just don't know.

This Charles and Sarah McGuire have children by the name of Isabella, Charles, Joseph, and Mary Ann.   Those names all fit quite nicely into my family tree as they repeat down the line.  Before I get too excited though, how can I be sure this is them?   I see that Isabella was born in Pennsylvania while the rest of the children were born in New York.  I am left scratching my head for sure.

You must take census with a grain of salt and yet they are more like a peppercorn that makes you react and keeps you tracing your family tree for more.   Just below Charles and Sarah are more McGuire's in a neighboring household on this very same page of the Census.  I have what looks to be a 72 year old Roger McGuire with another 35 year old Charles McGuire and a household full of male McGuire's.  I count 7.  I am now in the midst of a bunch of McGuire's.  Is that a good thing?  On the previous page is a Patrick McGuire with his "wifey" and children.  Ok....So Patrick...You go live in house 40, family 166, Charles in house 41, family 179 and Roger in house 41, family 180.  And how are you all related?  I don't know.  And we are not even in Brooklyn.  This is for NYC - Manhattan.  This is almost maddening for me.  Did I find my relatives?

The 1880 U.S. Census might answer my questions.  I find Charles and Sarah McGuire living in New York City, District 217 for this census.  They had to change the numbering of the districts for this census, of course.  They now have more children including my great grandfather, Frank.  In this census, it is clearly indicated that they live at 611 Greenwich Street.  Do you think that this is in Greenwich Village?  I've got to prove it!

The boundaries of Greenwich Village are Houston to 14th St., Fourth Ave. to Sixth Ave.  I can tell you though that Washington Square is in Greenwich Village.  Therefore, I think that the boundary is closer to Fourth Ave.  Knowing that my grandmother grew up on Charles Street is helpful to in determining where Greenwich Village and all of these Irish were located.  Based on my analysis, my great great grandparents were in Greenwich Village.   That's no surprise!

Is my review of the U.S. Census all supposition though?

To be continued..........



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