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Gildea Family History in Emmitsburg

Ray  & Mary (Gildea) Youngberg

Anthony Gildea - Nancy or Ann (Unknown)

Little is know about Anthony (b.1734) and Nancy (b.1739) except that they were natives of Co. Donegal, Ireland. Their only known child was Cormack Gildea. Their grandsons migrated to America and then on to Emmitsburg, Maryland. The origin of the family name is (Mac) GILDEA, Kildea. This name, which is Mac Giolla Dhe in Irish (i.e. son of the servant of God), is also called Kildea; in some places it has been corrupted to Gay, while in others by curious semi-translation it has been changed to Benison. It is primarily a Tirconnell Sept, but like so many of the followers of the O'Donnells some of its families migrated to Mayo, where, with Co. Donegal, it is chiefly found today. Among the adherents of Rory O'Donnell in 1601 were Conor, Owen, Brien and Edmund MacGillegea, this being an early Anglicization of the name in Co. Donegal. In 1624 Daniel Guilday was vicar-general of the diocese of Killaloe; as Gildea it is not unknown in Clare today. Ballykildea in Co. Clare and Ballykilladea in Co. Galway are presumably named from this Sept. Sir James Gildea (1838-1920), co-founder of St. John's Ambulance Association, was born in Co. Mayo.

Cormack Gildea - Barbara Lawn

Cormack (b.1752/d.1800) and Barbara Gildea were natives of Co. Donegal, Ireland. They had 5 sons, Edward, Cormack Jr., John, Michael, and Felix. John, Michael, and Felix chose to come to the United States later in their lives. The rest of the family remained in Ireland.

There has always been the idea that most immigrants from Ireland came to America because of the Great Potato Famine. The Famines started in 1845 and lasted till 1849. The Gildea's in this family came much earlier than that. They probably came to the America because there was little or no industry in Ireland and the native Irish had nowhere to go but abroad to improve their well-being. For many, one way to increase their wages was to seasonally migrate to England and Scotland to work as laborers. However, many chose America as their destination. Being Catholic and the religious intolerance that went along with it was also a factor toward emigration.

John Gildea - Catherine (Unknown)

John (b.1770/d.1815) and Catherine (b.1780/d.1830) were natives of Co. Donegal, Ireland and immigrated to the United States about 1800 landing at Baltimore, Md. John and Catherine lived Baltimore for about 11 years before they moved to Emmitsburg, Maryland. They had 2 sons, John Baptist, and Charles Daniel, and 3 daughters, Mary Anne, Catherine, and Helen Regina. Helen Regina was born in Emmitsburg. The other children were born in Baltimore. Both John and his wife, Catherine are buried at St. Joseph Cemetery, Emmitsburg, Maryland.

Michael Daniel Gildea - Ruth Gist

Michael Daniel Gildea (b.1780/d.1865) was a native of Co. Donegal, Ireland and immigrated to the United States in 1806, landing at Baltimore, Md. after a long and rough voyage of about twelve weeks on the Atlantic. He met and married his first wife, Ruth Gist in Baltimore, Md., where she was born. Census records showed that Michael's last name was misspelled as Gilder. Michael and Ruth were living in Baltimore when Suzanne Gildea (b.1812/d.1903) their first child was born. The family was living in Emmitsburg when their second child George Washington Gildea (b.1816/d.1899) was born. After bearing two children, Ruth who was quite frail from having children, died about 1819. Suzanne was 7 years old and George Washington Gildea was 3 years old. Michael by this time must have moved by to Baltimore. It is indicated that Michael must have found that raising 2 small children by him self was too difficult. Michael might have also found that Betsy Ann McCoy, who he intended to marry, was not too anxious to raise the children by him and his first wife. Michael subsequently took his children back to Emmitsburg and asked his first cousin Mary Anne (Gildea) and her husband John Barry if they would raise the children.

Michael Daniel Gildea - Elizabeth Ann McCoy

Michael subsequently moved to Guernsey Co., Ohio and married again, to another native of Co. Donegal, Betsy Ann McCoy (b.1798/d.1864). She had been previously married to Dr. McCoy a dentist and lived in Guernsey Co., Ohio. Betsy also had a good business in Ohio making very fine shirts. Michael and Betsy had 2 children by their marriage, Mary Ellen Gildea (b.1832/d.1866) and David Gildea (b.1838/d.1906). It is said that David had grandsons, one who became a Doctor and one who became a Dentist. Michael Daniel Gildea had been living with his son George Washington Gildea, MD when he died at 84 years of age. He is buried at St. Patrick's Church Cemetery, Richland Twp., Guernsey Co., Ohio.

Felix Gildea - Mary A. Summers

Felix (b.1781/d.1836) was a native of Co. Donegal, Ireland and probably immigrated to the United States in 1806 with his brother Michael Daniel, landing at Baltimore, Md. after a long and rough voyage of about twelve weeks on the Atlantic. He met and married Mary A. Summers (b.1788/d.1838) in Baltimore, Md., where she was born. Felix and Mary were living in Baltimore when their 2 sons, Michael and John, were born. Felix and Mary were buried at St. Peter's Cemetery, Baltimore, Maryland. There some evidence in the will of Rev. John Baptist Gildea that Felix and Mary's sons Michael and John were placed in the Baltimore County Orphanage with Father John Baptist Gildea as their guardian.

Rev. John Baptist Gildea - (Catholic Father)

Father John Baptist Gildea (b.1804/d.1845) was born in Baltimore before his father and mother moved to Emmitsburg. He began his education at 15 years of age, at Mt. Saint Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland and attended from 1819 to 1828. During that time he was also teaching some classes at Mt. Saint Mary's. He later transferred St. Mary's Seminary in Baltimore, Maryland a year before his Ordination. He was ordained March 25, 1829. There was a very fine painting of Father Gildea in St. Vincent's Orphanage, Baltimore, Maryland. The Sisters of Mercy ran the orphanage at the time. Father Gildea was very active in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. One of his surplices was in a museum at Mt. St. Agnes College, Mt. Washington in Baltimore. It was made of rare lace and brought from France as a gift to him. Another surplice was at Notre Dame in Baltimore. Father built a chapel at Asquith near Orleans for the Carmelite Nuns. A protestant church now owns it.

Father was the nun's chaplain. The nuns and all people held him in very high regard in the vicinity. One of the nuns became mentally deranged. She screamed from a street corner that she was being held a prisoner and wanted someone to help her escape. The people formed a mob and tried to rescue her. The nuns called Father Gildea. He explained to the people what was wrong and soon quelled the riot. Everyone had confidence in Father Gildea. Father Gildea established the Catholic Tract Society. He built the church at Martinsburg, West Virginia and established the cemetery there. He also built the church at Harpers Ferry, the Carmelite Chapel and St. Vincent's Church in Baltimore. He was the pastor at St. James The Less in Old Town. Just before Father's death, he started to build a male orphanage beside St. Vincent's Church.

After his death the work stopped. Before that the sexton had seen him kneeling at St. Vincent's alter. Finally the sexton said to him "In the name of God Father what brings you back"? Father told him that there were papers in a secret drawer in his desk that would enable the work to go on. He thought in faith it could happen. Father Gildea's "Will" gave the desk to Barry Colding after a time it became the possession of Mrs. Ira Swaim in San Francisco. Mrs. Swain was Barry Colding's niece. Father Gildea's "Will" is in the archives at the Cathedral in Baltimore. Father's body was initially interred under the main alter at St. Vincent's Church. Later it was removed from there to be placed in the priest's lot at the new Cathedral Cemetery when the city was about to buy the land St. Vincent Church occupies. That project may have finally come along.

Charles Daniel Gildea - Catherine Beahey

Charles Daniel Gildea (b.1805) and Catherine Beahey were married at the Old Church On The Hill in Emmitsburg. Buried at St. Peter Pro-Cathedral Cemetery, Baltimore, Maryland.

Mary Anne T. Gildea - John Barry - Esther A. Kearney

Mary Anne T. Gildea (b.1807/d.1846) and John Barry (b.1793/d.1876) lived their married life together in Emmitsburg, Maryland. John Barry was a well-known shoemaker of the time. John and Mary had 9 children, John G., John B., Helen L., John F., Alonzo Lucas, Edward Tiberius, Hugh Vincent, Mary Catherine, and John Joseph. Before Anne died, she asked her husband, John, to marry her very dear friend Esther A. Kearney, of Philadelphia. She told him that her children were too young to be without a mother. She was 39 years old when she died, their youngest child was 6 years old, and 4 of their children were still alive. She was buried at St. Joseph Cemetery, Emmitsburg, Maryland along with most of their other children.

John Barry did marry Esther A. Kearney (b.1811/d.1910). Esther and John Barry had several children that died in infancy. Their children were Helen Regina Barry (b.1847/d.1885), Charles V. Barry (b.1849/d.1850), and John Michael Barry (b.1852/d.1927). She promised God that if He would spare her son John, she would foster his vocation to the priesthood. He was promised to God before he was born. In 1908 Esther gave an interview to the Emmitsburg Chronicle as the oldest inhabitant of the city at the time. She was 97 years old and her interview can be found elsewhere in the Emmitsburg Area Historical Society archives. She was buried at St. Joseph Cemetery, Emmitsburg, Maryland along with all of their children.

Helen Regina Gildea - Peter Key (Keys, Kees, or Kase)

Helen Regina Gildea (b.1811) and Peter Key (Keys, Kees, or Kase) had 1 child, Helen Regina, Key (Keys, Kees, or Kase). It is conceivably that Peter Key (Keys, Kees, or Kase) is related to Francis Scott Key the author of The Star Spangled Banner. There is no direct evidence that he is but with the others help it may someday be proven.

Suzanna Gildea - Jacob Hoffman

Suzanna Gildea (b.1812/d.1903) and Jacob Hoffman (b.1807/d.1860) had 5 children Mary Hoffman, George Washington Hoffman, Thomas Marshall Hoffman, Elizabeth Hoffman, and Sarah Hoffman and the family lived mostly in Pennsylvania. Jacob Hoffman's family were associated with the paper making industries that goes back to the Revolutionary Days when they were called upon to provide the paper and perhaps even print the first official paper money for the United States.

George Washington Gildea - Margaret Gallagher

George Washington Gildea (b.1816/d.1899) and his sister Suzanna Gildea were brought by their father Michael Daniel Gildea to Emmitsburg to live with John Barry (b.1793/d.1876) and Mary Anne Gildea's (b.1807/d.1846) at their house. George and his sister were very young when their mother died in Baltimore. George Washington was barely 3 years old at the time. George Washington Gildea and Mary Anne Gildea (John Barry's first wife) were first cousins and they were virtually strangers. He and his sister, Suzanne Gildea, lived in Emmitsburg between the years 1812 - 1834. Being of Catholic faith it is believed they probably went to school at the Covent of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton. George Washington learned the shoemaker trade from John Barry, a well-known shoemaker of the time. He used shoemaking to make a living as he traveled on his way to eventually come to Ohio. While George and his sister were living at the Barry home there was an old lady living also living in the Barry home. The old lady could have conceivably been Catherine, John Gildea's wife who was Mary Anne's mother and George Washington's Aunt. It is said that when the Confederate army was encamped in Emmitsburg, the soldiers rode through the alleys and threw firebrands into the haymows. They threw one into the Barry barn. She saw it and gave the alarm. She took off her scapular and told them to throw it into the barn. The wind changed and the Barry home was saved. Later the scapular was discovered hanging on a nail in the barn. It was not even scorched. Later they found an inscription near the ceiling in St. Vincent's Church that read: "One God Father Of All" "One Sacrifice" "One Lawgiver and Judge" "One Holy Catholic And Apostolic Church" "One Body And One Spirit" "One Lord" "One Faith" "One Baptism" "One Fold And One Shepherd". George Washington Gildea and Margaret Gallagher (b.1822/d.1855) had 1 daughter and 3 sons, Ruth Ann Gildea, James Michael Gildea, John Francis Gildea, and George Vincent Gildea.

George Washington Gildea - Ann Elizabeth Gallagher

With the death of his first wife George Washington married his first wife's sister, Ann Elizabeth Gallagher (b.1834). They had 1 child Jane Gildea (b.1864/d.1864) who died in infancy. George Washington George Washington was one of the old settlers of Guernsey County, Ohio, and for years resided in New Gottingen, Ohio. It has been said of him, that he made his profession his study and success his object, and he had certainly attained his goal, for he stood high as a physician and was thoroughly conversant with every branch of the medical science. He had ministered to the ills of his patients over a wide scope of the county, and never refused to attend the sick, whether rich or poor. Like most of the brethren of his fraternity, he had been too much of a humanitarian to become wealthy, but by industry and thrift had acquired ample means with which to pass in comfort his declining years. The Doctor was only three years old at the time of his mother's death. His father placed him in the hands of comparative strangers to be brought up.

The boy led somewhat of an itinerant life for a few years, and received but few educational advantages. By the time he was nineteen years of age, he had learned the shoemaker's trade and, leaving his home at Emmitsburg, he started out as journeyman worker. He visited New Lisbon, Cleveland, Tiffin, Washington, Parkersburg, West Virginia, West Union, Ohio, Beavertown and many other places. By hard study at intervals in his work, the ambitious youth picked up sufficient knowledge to enable him to teach. For one term, he was in charge of a school at a point four miles west of Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania, but he found teaching and running a school was not to his taste.

He was next employed in a sawmill in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, and subsequently lived for a time in Allentown, Pennsylvania. In the fall of 1844, the Doctor returned to the state of Ohio, having a few years previously taken up study of medicine, at the suggestion of Drs. Wilson and Wrigert, of Berwick, Pennsylvania. Having started out in this direction, he faithfully held to his purpose, and after a full course of preparation, spent the winter of 1847-48 at the Ohio Medical College of Cincinnati. During his preparatory course, Dr. John McFarland, of Washington, Ohio, was his preceptor, and to him George Washington was deeply indebted for their aid in his mastering the intricacies of his profession.

He first opened a practice at Temperanceville, Belmont County, Ohio where he practiced for two years, after which, in 1850, he came to Guernsey County, Ohio, where he had remained uninterrupted, with the sole exception of four months in 1875. At that time he contemplated settling in Wilton, Wisconsin, but he found the climate too severe and returned to his old home in Ohio. In his political faith the Doctor was a Democrat. A member of the Roman Catholic Church, he exemplified its best teachings in his daily life. From August 1893, he held the position of United States Pension Examiner, with headquarters at Cambridge. For years he was President of the Guernsey County Medical Society. The Doctor was a warm-hearted and generous man by disposition, and his very presence, full of cheer and strength, assisted his patients to recover their wonted health. George Washington and Ann Elizabeth are interned in a crude mausoleum at St. Patrick's Church Cemetery, Richland Twp., Guernsey Co., Ohio.

Rev. John Mary Michael Barry - (Catholic Father)

Before John Michael Barry (b.1852/d.1927) was born, his mother, Esther A. Kearney, promised God that if He would spare John, she would foster his vocation to the priesthood. He was promised to God before he was born. His mother had several children that died in infancy. Father was educated at Niagara. His mother did not want him to go to Mt. Saint Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg. She was afraid he might lose his vocation. He did become a very fine priest. When Father Barry was a small boy, he used to serve mass at St. Joseph's Academy. The Confederate army encamped at Emmitsburg on their way to Gettysburg. When he was on his way to serve mass at St. Joseph's, he met many of the soldiers. They said, "Hello Johnnie". He came home and told his mother that his half brothers, Edward and Hugh, must have told them about him because they knew his name. He did not know that all northerners were called "Johnnie". His brothers, Edward and Hugh Barry were in the Southern army. At one point, Father Barry wrote to Aunt Annie before she died, that he was writing a history of Emmitsburg for a Catholic Paper and that his branch of the family would have honorable mention. Marie Barry thought that the articles might have been written for the Catholic Mirror.

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