Notes for Bridget Kelly: As for Bridgetís date of birth, the evidence is confusing. Again, we must start with her death certificate, dated 22 February 1910. This document states that she was 64 years old when she died which would give her a birth year of 1846. If her first child was born in 1860 she would have been only 14 years old. Possible but not probable. Perhaps, John, her son, when giving information to the doctor was mistaken about her age. From this document we also learn that she too, was born in Ireland as was her father, Michael Kelly. The information about Bridgetís mother is unknown to John who was the informant. In contrast to a birth date of 1846 we have evidence (probably given by Bridget, herself) from the 1900 Census in which she gives her birth date as Feb. 1831 - much more likely. She also stated in this census that she was 68 years old in 1900. In this same document she also states that she immigrated to the United States in 1852.
In the Census of 1900, Bridget also declared that she was widowed and had been married 43 years, having born 7 children, 4 of whom were still living. She was able to read, write and speak English and owned her own home on South 6th Avenue. At the time of the census she had living with her the young family of my grandfather, her son, James Charles Carmody and his wife Jane Cecelia (Jennie) Hyland and their three children, Charles, Arthur and Margaret (your grandma). Another of Bridgetís sons, Joseph aged 28, was also living in the household in 1900. He was a soldier at that time. He was probably involved in some way in the Spanish American War.
Nothing more is known about Bridget and James except that James died intestate and therefore, Bridget had to petition for administration privileges for the estate. From this document we have a listing of her 4 remaining children and their addresses. At the time of these proceedings in 1895, John J., Joseph L., and Michael F. all lived in Mount Vernon. James Charles at this time was living at 350 West 124th Street, NYC. The real estate transactions mentioned in the final settlements of James' estate are of some interest and they can be seen in my archives. The interesting thing for me was to actually have a copy of Bridgetís signature. The only thing that is really left as a token of her life.
According to Aunt Isabelís rendition of the structure of James and Bridgetís family we have the following persons: John, Steven, Marguerite, James, Edward, Michael and Joseph. These names can be confirmed for the most part by City Directories of Mount Vernon and by individual Census records for each family. The family will be found in outline form with more information on another page. However, both Marguerite and Edward do not appear in any document only in Aunt Isabel's history.
Bridget died on 22 February 1910 having buried 4 of her 7 children. She died in what appears to be Mount Vernon Hospital of a Cerebral Hemorrhage. She was in the hospital for 2 days having lived with her son, John, at 452 South 4th Avenue, in the last years of her life. She was buried in St. Raymond's Cemetery on 24 February, 1910 in grave 1 of the family plot.
There are 4 references to Bridget's birth date:
1) The Federal Census for NY for 1900 which states that she was born Feb 1831. It also states that she was 68 years old at the time of the enumeration. This questionnaire was probably answered by Bridget, herself and therefore must be considered the most reliable of these four sources. (3)
2) St. Raymond's Cemetery Interment List which states she died in Feb 1910 at age 64 which suggests that she was born in 1846. This information is probably taken from her death certificate. (2)
3) The biography of her son, Mchael, which was written in 1899 and suggests that Bridget was 60 in that year. Suggesting a date of 1839, but 1899 is only a publishing date. A year or two may have intervened between the writing of the biography and its publication. (1)
4) Her death certificate states that she was born in 1845 (month and year not known) and died on 22 Feb 1910 at the age of 64 years. Her son, John, was the informant for this information - since he doesn't know the month of her birthday, then he could certainly be just as uncertain about the year of her birth. (2)
5) The 1870 census puts her age at 42 which would give her a birth date of about 1828.
6) The soundex for the 1880 Westchester, NY census gives her age as 49 which gives a birth year of 1831
If her birth date is 1845, and her first child was born about 1860, she would have been about 15 or 16 years old at his birth. If she was born in 1845 then, if in the census of 1900, she is said to have been married 43 years, she would have been married in 1857 at the age of 9 years.
She was probably born closer to 1828 or 1831. Age becomes a more sensitive subject as one ages.
More About Bridget Kelly: Burial: February 24, 1910, St. Raymond Cemetery, Bronx, NY. Immigration: 1852, Emmigration from Ireland at age 20, Ship Rappahanock, Liverpool to NY.470, 471 Occupation: 1886, First listed as widow of James in Turner's Directory.472, 473 Religion: Roman Catholic. Residence 1: Bet. 1897 - 1910, 47 6th Ave., Mt Vernon, NY.474, 475 Residence 2: 1880, East Chester, Westchester Co., NY.476 Residence 3: 1900, Bridgett owned her house at 47 6th Ave, without mortgage.477 Residence 4: February 22, 1910, Was said to have lived at this address for 2 days prior to death.478
More About Bridget Kelly and James Charles Carmody: Marriage: Abt. 1857, Mt. Vernon, NY or NYC, NY.479, 480, 481
Marriage Notes for Bridget Kelly and James Charles Carmody: There was a strong family tradition that James and Bridget Kelly were married in "old" St. Peterís Church on Barclay Street in lower Manhattan. In fact, my grandmother and my aunt Isabel mentioned to me more than once that they were one of the first couples to be married in St Peter's. Family tradition is a wonderful starting place when trying to search for facts about the ancestors but it can only point the way and is often wrong. This was the case with the Carmody - Kelly union. After inquiring about the family from St. Peterís, which is still in operation, having been founded in 1785, I received two letters from them in 1997 assuring me that the familyís sacramental history was not to be found in their archives. So I broadened the search to include all the churches that were in existence by 1855 in the lower east side of Manhattan. This search was also fruitless.
The following churches have been searched for Carmody sacramental records: St. Andrew's - Card. Hayes Place, NYC St. James' - Oliver St., NYC St. Joseph's -Monroe St., NYC St. Patrick's "old cathedral", NYC St. Peter's - Barclay St., NYC St. Teresa's - Henry St., NYC Transfiguration - Mott St., NYC - all of the above churches report negative results.
I have since moved the search to the Harlem area and to the Mott Haven and Morrisania areas.
My search of the Mount Vernon area is ongoing. So for the time being, given evidence from the Census and City Directories, I believe that they were married about 1857. In the 1900 Census, Bridget states that she had been married 43 years and their first child, John J., declares he was 60 years old in the 1920 NY Federal Census for Mount Vernon.
Children of Bridget Kelly and James Charles Carmody are: