Old King John's Castle

Old King John's Castle
A view of King John's Castle from the River Shannon. Behind the castle turret is the end of Convent Street where Bridget and John's daughter, Mary, was born in 1865, just before Bridget left for America to join her husband John. Photo July 2011.

About John Thompson (Thomas) and Bridget Reidy

About John Thompson/Thomas and Bridget Reidy

John Thompson/Thomas was born in Ireland c 1831 and married Bridget Reidy (Riedy/Ready) c1851 in Ireland. Bridget was born in Ireland c1831. They used the Thompson and Thomas surnames interchangeably, but settled on Thomas prior to coming to America. In 1866 the family immigrated from County Limerick, Ireland, to Chicago, Illinois. They had eight known children, six born in Ireland and two born in Illinois. Bridget [Madigan/Thompson Genealogy] the oldest was born 1852 in or near Limerick City, County Limerick and died in Chicago in 1935. The other children born in Limerick include: Mary Ellen (c1855-1906); Patrick (1857-b1866); James (1860-1932); Martin (1862-1898); and Marian/Mary (1865-b1866). The two youngest children John (c1867-1879) and Lillian Marie (1869-1928) were born in Illinois, most likely, Chicago. The mother, Bridget, died of heart failure and pneumonia on May 3, 1900. Father, John, died of pneumonia three years later on May 21, 1904. They are both buried in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Chicago, Illinois

Thursday, October 13, 2016

James Thomas Becomes a Naturalized U. S. Citizen

On October 6, 1886, at the age of 26, 21 years after arriving as a small child in the U. S., James Thomas became a U. S. Citizen. He filed his naturalization papers in the Superior Court of Cook County, Illinois.

In 1886, naturalization was still being coordinated at the local level and, unfortunately, the papers do not provide much genealogical information.

This document is from a Superior Court docket book.

Thanks to Dan Moore for identifying the existence of this document and providing me with the information to locate it.

Source: Cook County Archives, Superior Court, Cook County, Illinois, Volume 13, page 219. Date of naturalization, October 6, 1886.

Martin Thomas' Naturalization Paper

On March 27, 1894, Martin Thomas, third son of John and Bridget (Reidy) Thomas/Thompson, became an American citizen. He was approximately 32 years old when he was granted his citizenship. On the document, he states he was a native of Ireland and he arrived in the United States as a minor. This is confirmed on the passenger list where he is listed as traveling with his Mother and siblings, arriving in New York City on September 8, 1866 at the recorded age of 3. It is sad to think, within 4 years from becoming a U. S. citizen, he would die of tuberculosis on May 7, 1898.

James E. Gillan, 5805 S. Carpenter, Chicago, signed Martin's naturalization papers as a witness to his "good moral character." At this point, James E. Gillan is not a known family associate.

Thanks to Dan Moore for locating in the U. S. Department of Labor, Immigration and Naturalization Service index the information that allowed location of Martin's naturalization papers.

Source: Circuit Court, Cook County, Illinois; Certificate no. R 47 P 10 Minor.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

John and Bridget Thomas Gravestone, Mt. Olivet Cemetery

In an earlier post, I noted there was no grave stone on the John/Bridget Thomas grave at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Chicago. My gift for my birthday this year from my husband was a stone that lists all the individuals buried in Lot S 112; Block/Section 41.

Buried in the same set of graves:

  • John Thomas (Thompson) born c 1831 in County Limerick, Ireland; died March 21, 1904 in Chicago, Illinois. Married Bridget Reidy in Ireland c 1851.
  • Bridget (Reidy) Thomas born c 1831 in County Limerick, Ireland; died May 3, 1900 in Chicago, Illinois.
  • Martin Thomas baptized November 11, 1862 at St. Mary's Church, Limerick City, County Limerick, Ireland; died May 7, 1898 in Chicago, Illinois. Never married.
  • Ellen (Thomas) Halloran/Hallaran baptized April 29, 1855 Parteen and Meelick Church, St. Patrick Civil Parish, County Clare, Ireland; died January 10, 1906 in Chicago, Illinois. Married Charles Hallaran on December 2, 1877 at St. John's Church, Chicago, Illinois (Charles was born c April, 1855 in Canada; died December 2, 1902 in Chicago, Illinois; buried in Calvary Cemetery, Evanston, Illinois)
  • John L. Valley born January 8, 1868 in Newry, County Down, Ireland; died August 7, 1941. He married Lillian Thomas on December 26, 1886 and they divorced prior to March, 1892 when he married Edyth Beder who died in the Iroquois Theatre fire of 1903.
  • Lillian Thomas (Vallely) Davis born June 11, 1869 in Chicago, Illinois; died July 22, 1928 in Chicago. Married first John L. Valley in 1886 and then George Davis on June 27, 1903. George was born c 1873 and died before 1920. 
  • William Vallely, grandson of John L. Vallely and Lillian Thomas Vallely Davis; son of William Vallely and Bernice Cunningham, was born December 28, 1918 and died on September 20, 1919 in Chicago, Illinois.

Elaine McIntyre Beaudoin inspecting the new gravestone, December 7, 2015.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Martin Thompson, c1863-1898, Death Certificate

The third child of Bridget and John Thomas, Martin, was born c1863 in Ireland and died single at age 35.  Although the death certificate states he was born in America, both the 1870 and 1880 US Census states he was born in Ireland.

His place of death was 3802 Parnell Avenue, Chicago and he was buried in Mt. Olivet Cemetey, Chicago in the same grave as his parents which is section 41, lot S112.  GPS coordinates: N 41 degrees, 41 minues, 11 seconds; W 87 degrees, 41 minutes, 38.8 seconds; Altitude: 636 feet.  There are no markers on the grave.

Document image: Courtesy of Elaine M. Beaudoin

Sunday, March 3, 2013

John Thompson, c1867-1879, Death Certificate

John Thompson, fifth child of Bridget and John Thomas, was born c1867/1868 in Chicago, Illinois, and died January 1, 1879.  He died at 304 21st Street, Chicago.  Cause of death appears to be bronchitis and congestion of the brain.  He was buried at Calvary Cemetery, Evanston, Illinois.

Document image: Courtesy of Elaine M. Beaudoin

Sunday, February 3, 2013

James Thomas (1863-1932) and Bridget Kennedy (c1864-1939), Death Certificates

James, fourth child, died of acute dilation of the heart, or a heart attack, at home.  He had had a cerebral hemorrhage on August 12, 1930, nearly two years prior to his death.  The informant on the death certificate is his son, John Thomas, who was living with his father at 5725 S. Fairfield Avenue, Chicago.  James had been a superintendent of a cold storage meat packing company.  His son provided the information that James' parents were from County Limerick, Ireland.

Bridget Kennedy Thomas died June 13, 1939 at her home located at 5725 S. Fairfield, Chicago.  Three weeks before her death, she fell in her kitchen, fracturing her left hip.  She had a history of myocarditis.   Her son, John Thomas, is the informant on her death certificate.  At the time of her death he was living on S. Ellis Avenue and most likely married.  Even though her death certificate states her birthday was January 22, 1875, I believe she was born 1864.  She is the baptismal sponsor for her nephew, Alexander Sullivan, in 1880.  It is unlikely she was a godparent and only 5 years old. She is buried with her husband at Holy Sepulchre, Cemetery, Alsip, Illinois.

Bridget Thomas [nee Kennedy], beloved wife of the late James, darling mother of John and Patrick, sister of Mrs. Ellen O'Leary, Mrs. John Kennedy, and the late Patrick, Mrs. Thomas O'Shea, Winifred and Cornelius Kennedy.  Funeral Saturday, 9:30 a.m., from late residence 5725 S. Fairfield avenue, to St. Clare of Montefalco church, 55th and Talman.  Solemn requiem mass will be celebrated.  Interment Holy Sepulcher. Information, Haymarket 0365.  Chicago Tribune, June 16, 1939.

The grave markers are side-by-side at Holy Sepulcher Cemetery.  Bridget's prayer card was located in Nell Sullivan's missal.

Images courtesy: Elaine M. Beaudoin

Sunday, January 6, 2013

James Thomas and Bridget Kennedy, Marriage, 1893, etc.

John and Bridget's fourth child, James, born c1860, and Bridget Kennedy, born c1864, applied for a marriage license on October 14, 1893 in Chicago.  James is listed as being 30 years old and Bridget is listed as being 29.

On October 22, 1893 they were married by Rev. P. O'Dwyer of St. Marry's Catholic Church in Chicago.

On page 412-413 of the Marriage Register of St. Mary's Church it lists James Condon and Annie Kennedy as witnesses to the marriage.