Possibly born Edgeworthstown, County Longford Possibly born County Cavan
WILLIAM KERNAN: William was involved in the Rebellion of 1799 of the Irish against the English. This rebellion was protesting the relocation of Scots into Ireland by the British. Irish land was taken away and given to the incoming Scots. William and his family lost their property. With a warrant out for his arrest he fled Ireland to come the USA. William landed at Staten Island, New York after an 18 week sea voyage from Ireland. It was August 1800 and he was 21. He settled in wilderness land in West New York state. Today the Kernan family stills owns a lot of land in upstate New York around Utica.
Burial: St. Agnes Cemetery Military service: Infantry 1807, Brig General 1825 Occupation: Lawyer, Politician, Military, Farmer Religion: Irish Catholic Democrat
-------- Member of NY Legislature 1833-34 Member of (NY?) Constitutional Convention 1846
William & his wife left Wayne in 1857 for Utica Both buried in St. Agnes Cemetery
History of the Settlement of Steuben County, New York
by: Guy McMasters 
General William Kernan, of County Kavan, in Ireland, was the first settler in the part of the old town of Fredericktown, which is now the town of Tyrone. He settled in 1800 upon a lot in a tract of 4000 acres, which had been purchased of Low & Harrison, by Mr. Thomas O'Connor of the County of Roscommon in Ireland. Mr. O'Connor proposed to settle a colony of his countrymen on this tract. He himself lived for a time in a log-house on the hill by Little Lake, above the farm now occupied by Gen. Kernan. Two children, a son and daughter, accompanied him in his sojourn in the woods. The former is now Charles O'Connor, Esq., the eminent lawyer of New York City. A large number of Irish Emigrants settled on the O'Connor tract, but after a few seasons abandoned their improvement--being discouraged at the labor of clearing the land, and discontented at the want of religious advantages according to the practice of the Roman Catholic Church. Gen. Kernan alone remained on the tract.
----------------------------------------------------------- www.neh.fed.us/news/humanities/1999-11/kernan.html Moments of Discovery By Michael Kernan I knew that some ancestor of mine had come over from Ireland nearly two centuries ago and settled in the wilds of northern New York State. It didn't mean a lot to me. But a few years back, a cousin showed me a letter written by the daughter of this forebear, my great-great-grandfather William Kernan, that told of his arrival in New York in August, 1800.
He was twenty-one. According to his daughter, he stood five feet ten inches and had light hair and blue eyes, "a long nose and a very firm mouth...thin and muscular, very strongly built, and weighed about 160 pounds." After a voyage of eighteen weeks, this young native of County Cavan must have been restless, for the ship was quarantined off Staten Island due to a yellow fever epidemic.
William had seen an ad, "Boy Wanted, " in the Spectator, so he talked the captain into letting him off the ship early. He came ashore carrying all he owned in a large kerchief and got his job, working for a William Weyman in Maiden Lane. A year later he headed upstate, where he bought land, married and started a family that included a U. S. Senator. His descendants now take up fifteen pages, single-spaced.
But I can never forget how I first really saw him when I read that letter, this tall kid being rowed across New York harbor with a bundle of clothes on his lap and the whole future dancing in his blue eyes. It was a moment of discovery for me.
And I think almost everyone must have some such moment: the realization that you are attached to the past, that you are part of history, that this is perhaps what America is all about. I talked to some people about this, more or less at random. For many of them, the great American westward movement was a family thing.
In 1789 the French Revolution occurred during which French peasants overthrew the monarchy. Out of the bloodshed emerged a new democratic French republic. For many peasant people across Europe, this new democracy concept was very appealing, since it gave the power to them and not to the aristocracy. In 1791, the newly installed French government offered military assistance to any group who wanted to overthrow their own King. This was very worrying for the surrounding monarchies of England, Spain, Germany and Austria and war soon broke out between them and France. At the same time, a new organization was formed in Ireland. Under Wolfe Tone, the United Irishmen (who consisted of Protestants and Catholics alike) declared their belief in a peaceful future for Ireland in which Protestants and Catholics could live together in peace and with equality. They wanted to set up a French-styled democratic republic in Ireland, which was independent of Britain. They quickly gained support, although some, most notably the newly-formed Orange Order which was set up to preserve loyalty to the monarchy, were against them.
Supporting French Republicanism was seen as treasonous by the British considering they were at war with France. Also, Britain was a constitutional monarchy, which meant that the King did not have absolute power. Therefore the British regarded themselves as already democratic. Because of these facts, the British saw the United Irishmen as a national threat to be disposed of.
In 1798, the British began attacking known United Irishmen, and murdering large numbers of Protestant and Catholic members. Tone realized that if they were going to have their rebellion, it would have to be now or never, before the British destroyed them. So a large rebellion began in the spring concentrated in counties Down, Antrim and Wexford. Several bloody battles took place at Antrim, Ballynahinch and Saintfield. The United Irishmen were finally defeated at the Battle of Vinegar Hill in County Wexford. Almost all the several hundred United Irishmen were slaughtered.
However, it was not over. In late 1798, the French sent reinforcements to Ireland and they landed at Mayo, in western Ireland. They invaded and took over the area and gained popular support among the local Irish who saw it as an opportunity to get a better government. The French and their Irish allies got as far as county SLIGO before being defeated by the British. While the French were taken prisoner, the local Irish were massacred as a punishment for treason. Wolfe Tone committed suicide in prison whilst awaiting execution. Note that this was the last time a hostile army ever invaded Ireland.
Although the rebellion had been put down, it was clear that Republicanism in Ireland could not be ignored and serious changes were needed in the way Ireland was governed to ensure that such violence did not occur again.
The drastic action that was taken was the Act of Union, passed in 1800. It formed a new country ("The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland") by uniting England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland. A new flag - the Union Jack - was created for it which had components from the flags of each member state. All regional parliaments were abolished, and instead the entire UK was to be ruled from a centralized London parliament. For most Irish, there wasn't a noticeable difference, but it meant the Irish government representatives could not pass laws on their own.
More About William Kernan: Burial: 1870, St. Agnes Cemetery, Utica, NY. Immigration: 1800, USA. Naturalization: 1802 Residence: 1857, Utica, NY.
More About William Kernan and Roseanna Maria Stubbs: Marriage: 31 May 1812, Wayne, Steuben Co., NY.
Marriage Notes for William Kernan and Roseanna Maria Stubbs:
1880 Census Household:
Name Relation Marital Status Gender Race Age Birthplace Occupation Father's Birthplace Mother's Birthplace Alice KERNAN Self S Female W 53 NY Keeping House IRE IRE Rose A. KERNAN Sister S Female W 51 NY IRE IRE Michael KERNAN Brother Male W 46 NY Bookkeeper In Bank IRE IRE Cecilia KERNAN SisterL M Female W 39 CUBA ITALY NY Angelo J. KERNAN Nephew S Male W 10 NY At School NY CUBA George KERNAN Nephew S Male W 3 NY NY CUBA Edward PATTEN Nephew S Male W 24 NY Clerk In Shoe Manufactory NY NY Sarah FITZSIMON Other S Female W 35 CAN Servant IRE IRE
----------------- Source Information: Census Place Utica, Oneida, New York Family History Library Film 1254904 NA Film Number T9-0904 Page Number 129D
30-31 frame $500 SUNDERLIN Norman 39 head b. Steuben Co. Louis (?) 34 wife b. Yates Co. Matilda 15 child b. Steuben Co. Hannah A. 13 child b. Steuben Co. Charles 10 child b. Steuben Co. Mary E. 8 child b. Steuben Co. Daniel, Jr. 5 child b. Steuben Co. 31-32 frame $300 SUNDERLIN Daniel W. 65 head b. Dutchess Co. Hannah 59 wife b. Dutchess Co.
page 2 TOWN OF TYRONE 1855
54-57 frame $400 SUNDERLIN Jas. W. 23 head b. Steuben Co. Margaret 22 wife b. Steuben Co.
57-61 frame $500 KERNAN Wm 74 head b. Ireland naturalized Rosanna 66 wife b. Ireland Edward 37 child b. Steuben Co. Alice 30 child b. Steuben Co. CULLEN Catharine 22 laborer b. Ireland PADDEN Patrick 22 laborer b. Ireland Hubert 19 laborer b. Ireland
103-108 frame $200 EATON Julius 57 head b. Connecticut Elizabeth 53 wife b. New Jersey James 28 child b. Steuben Co. John 26 child b. Steuben Co. Julia 21 child b. Steuben Co. Salinda 20 child b. Steuben Co. married Franklin 20 child b. Steuben Co. Homer 16 child b. Steuben Co. . PATTEN Alice 8 boarder b. Yates Co. ADAMS Douglas W. 24 boarder b. Washington Co. married
Children of William Kernan and Roseanna Maria Stubbs are: