I learn more and more about the ghosts from my past. My ancestors are, after all the stuff of me. My family is...colorful. I don't know much about them when they were in Ireland but I know a lot since they arrived in America. I know my great, great grandpa John married a fiery, headstrong lass from County Tipperary. John arrived in 1865. His bride Margaret some years earlier. John was Catholic, didn't know how to read or write, and came from a simple farmers family. Margaret, was educated, but had a very short temper. They were married in April 1870. My guess is that John was simple, and perhaps easy going, while Margaret was wearing the pants of the family. They settled in Connecticut, had two kids, and decided to move west..The family always said he was looking for work...I think he just wanted to farm. As the family moved west, more kids being born, kids getting older..they were in Illinois for a while and the Minnesota territories. One of the oldest kids Was Thomas, my great grandfather. He was just like his mom, he had a wicked, bad temper. Farming didn't agree with him, and he took up painting houses, and for extra money, was a bouncer in the saloons. He liked to call square dancing, and met my great grandmother at one of the dances. My great grandmother came from Ireland, but was protestant, so her her family disowned her, being my family was Catholic. Thomas loved fight, loved to drink, and his temper was bad..he got angry, and punched a horse, and dropped it with hit. and had his own agenda. the family continued on to Spokane, Washington.  John and Margaret and all the kids chose to in Spokane but for one...Yep. Thomas. he packed his wife and kids up, including my grandpa, who was born in Iowa in 1905, and moved to Seattle, Washington. Because this clan that had kept moving, by themselves, my grandpa retained a little of his Irish brogue.

Thomas, was a smart guy, he was a painter, and a wall paper hanger for some of the finest homes in Seattle for the time. It was said he always had whiskey on his breath...My grandfather for a time was a painter. but, it didn't agree with him.He decided to drive a truck, and become a teamster. in 1938, he became on of the first Boeing truck drivers. he loved to hunt, loved to chew tobacco, and of course, drank, a lot. My dad, was just like the rest of the Murphys...but, doesn't drink as much, but did become a truck driver at Boeing. Me? third generation Boeing driver. I'm prone to drink and raise a little hell.

 The journey to find these ghosts from my past was fun. I started on Ancestry. com. I also used Roots Ireland i.e. Helpful hints? you can't always trust death certificates, or other" official" documents...Ryans are confused with Briens...and the people that took the info don't care. Also, learn the secrets of how the Irish named their children...VERY VALUABLE!  If you are on the right track you will recognize family names! I hope this helps, and if anyone needs help, I would to help you!!!!!!                                                          Best wishes,     Kerry.

Views: 169

Tags: Boeing, Connecticut, Iowa, Murphy, Seattle, Spokane, Tipperary, Washington, Washington State

Comment by Gerry Regan on April 18, 2013 at 3:19pm

Kerry, fascinating story. Thank you for both sharing it and unearthing it. How about some pictures of those mentioned here? Might you add some? People always relate more immediately to visuals on the web, I think. Ger


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