Michael Treacy: Birth: ABT. 1890. Death: JAN 1895
Note: April 11, 2001: Received a package from Colleen Simmons with the following narrative: James and Johanna adopted two boys, a nephew, Edward Murphy and Alphonseus Sylvester Brunner. They both took the name of Treacy. A.S. Brunner changed his name to Albert John. James Treacy 1846-1926 From Bailey's "A History of Minnehaha County (South Dakota)", we have this notation: James Tracy is a native of Ireland and was born in the county of Tipperary, August 31, 1846. The records of the parish of Mullinahone record his baptism as August 30, 1846. His godfather was the ubiquitous Patrick Smith and the godmother, Alice Dillon. His arrival was surely in late August of 1846. James married Nora Meagher in Tipperary and they had three children: William, Richard Peter and Mary. At Mary's birth, she died as well as her mother. Nora Meagher may be buried in the cemetery at Cloneen, Co. Tipperary with her sister-in-law, Margaret Treacy Meagher. This is speculation on my part. After the deaths of Nora and Mary, James came to the United States, bringing with him Richard and possibly William. According to Jim Barbour, James arrived here in 1876 and went to Vermont. He did not stay long and proceeded to Appleton, Wisconsin where his brother, Edward, was living. In Appleton he met and married Johanna Dargen, likely in 1877. She was born in Ohio, as was her brother, Michael Dargen, who later married Catherine Treacy. James and Johanna Moved to Beaver Creek, Minnesota where their first child, Margaret Agnes was born, July 1878. Margaret was the name of Johanna's mother and James's paternal grandmother. Bailey says that James arrived in Minnehaha County, SD in March of 1878. One wonders if he left Johanna in Beaver Creek to deliver their first child alone! Bailey goes on to say that James took up a homestead, the northeast quarter of section 32, in Wall Lake Township, but sold it to Carter Sweeney in 1889. He held the office of school clerk several years, town clerk two years, and was chairman of the town board four years. he was a supervisor in 1890 and 1891. He is noted as being a good neighbor, an active, honest, enterprising citizen. Papers in our possession show his application for homestead land as being filed July 25, 1883, NE quarter of Section 32, Township 101. After 1891 he is no longer listed as a member of the board of supervisors on which he first appeared in 1882. He jumped right in to take part in local government, even before his land application was approved. James and Johanna had at least ten children, including Al who was adopted. There is some confusion with later census records, but the 1880 census, taken June 11, 1880, shows them living in Minnehaha County with two year old Maggie and five month old Mary E. Also listed with them is Michael Dargen, twenty-eight. Michael Dargen gives his birthplace as Ohio and he states that his parents were both born in Ireland. We believe that this was Tralee, County Kerry. His brother, James, changed his name to Dorgan. James's family resides in the Seattle area. We believe that Jim and Johanna had six more children born in Minnehaha County: Michael, James, Johanna, Catherine (later Sister Mary Paula), John and Ethel. We have a burial record from Saint Michael Cemetery, Sioux Falls, for 27 January 1895, in the Treacy family plot. This is certainly young Michael. Later his grandmother, Mary, would be interred next to him. Mary Dargen, the sister of Johanna and Michael, married Thomas Murphy and they lived at Hartford, SD along with Mary's parents, Michael and Margaret Dargen. In 1893, Mary Dargen Murphy died, leaving, among other, a young son, Edward. Because Johanna was nursing Ethel, she was able to take Edward and breast feed him also. Ed was adopted by Jim and Johanna and raised as their son. This gave the family nine children at the end of 1893. After the death of Michael Treacy, James decided to move his brood back to Appleton, Wisconsin. In 1898, Elizabeth Regina was born in Appleton, followed in 1899 by Winnifred Eileen. The 1900 census for Outagamie County, Wisconsin gives us a puzzle: there is an eight year old Charlie listed, but no Edward who should have been the same age as Ethel. Is this an Irish practical joke? James's itchy Irish foot kicked in again and in 1903 he moved his family to Seattle, Washington. He had gone literally from sea to shinning sea. This is where they adopted Alphonsus Brunner who later became Al Tracy. Most of the family remains there today. There is a wonderful picture of the James Tracy (he dropped the "e") family, given to me by Al Tracy. The family is seated outside the house at 5003 - 35th Avenue SW, Seattle, Washington the corner of Hudson Street. This photograph, taken in 1911, also shows Richard Peter, the son of Nora Meagher, and his youngest son, Eugene. When Uncle Jim died in 1926 five priests attended his funeral and he had an extended obituary in the newspaper. Aunt Johanna lived until 1940 and Richard until 1942. These people are buried in Calvary Cemetery, Seattle, Washington. When I visited their graves in 1995 with several of the cousins, I was struck by the fact that there was no large family monument as there is in Sioux Falls, SD. It was a surprise to me that the headstones were rather modest. No doubt I thought that having an impressive monument and headstones was the way "we" did things. There is also no large monument in the cemetery in Appleton, Wisconsin. A few notes about James Tracy and his family: James apparently had a gift for many things including playing the violin and writing poetry. I have a small black book in which Sister Paula (Catherine Tracy) wrote in her tiny handwriting, the poems and thoughts of her father. This was also given to me by Al Tracy who lived in Oregon. One of Jim's poems, "My Dreams", was read by his great-grandson, Jim Barbour, at the South Dakota family reunion in 1994. The poem tells the story of coming to America and later being joined by his parents. Jim shows his love of family, especially his wife, Johanna. I think this love of family is one of the greatest traits of the Irish. Sister Paula was a Holy Name nun and pretty much always lived in the Seattle area. She was the one person each branch of the family can connect with. We certainly knew her in South Dakota. Bill Quill has pictures of her in Appleton. Whenever you speak of being related, Sister Paula is the one people recognize. The following concerns the deaths of three of the children. Mikey who is buried in Sioux Falls, SD died of Bright's disease. Jean (Elizabeth Regina) had a miscarriage and contracted pneumonia. John, the young son about whom there is some question, passed away from appendicitis. If there are facts some place about John, it would be nice to have them included. James Jr. is said to have had heart trouble. Winnie and Jo lived to ripe old ages. I remember corresponding with them, but did not know enough to ask the right questions at that time. James Tracy was a deeply religious man, devoted to his family. One wonders why the curse of alcoholism escaped him when it affected at least two of his siblings, Jack and Johanna Treacy. Thankfully it did. He left many descendants. Mary Ellen, the first child born in South Dakota, married William Walsh. They had a very large family and were featured in newspaper articles in the Seattle paper. These clippings are in the scrapbook kept by Ruby Wagoner Tracy in Sioux Falls, SD. Many thanks for much of the above information to James Barbour of California and to Albert Tracy of Oregon. Ethel Tracy was Jim's grandmother. Al Tracy was the adopted son, originally named Alphonsus Sylvester Brunner. "My Dream" by James Treacy Last night in my sleep, a sweet vision I saw Of my own native country, Erin go bragh With the little thatched cottage that stood in the vale The sweetest and dearest in old Granaile I saw the old turf fire that burned so bright In the long winter evenings, it was our delight When from toil we returned, our dear parents to see And our mother, she kissed each, acushla macree Then I saw the dark day that had filled me with fears And my mother and father, we mingled our tears And my brothers and sisters, they all said to me God bless you and keep you, abouchle macree Then I saw the dear land that gave me a home And I saw the dear girl that I now call my own We're living as happy as happy can be With our sons and our daughters, acushla macree Then I saw the big ship that sailed over the main And brought me my father and mother again With the rest of our loved ones, they all came to me And once more they blessed their own, abouchle macree I awoke from my slumbers and found all was true And my wife said, "Dear Jim, what's the matter with you? You have talked in your sleep of days long ago, But you said that you loved me and I know it is so." "Dear wife, I believe that I talked in my sleep For last night I sailed over the dark briny deep To the Island of Saints where I saw the light I awoke and found that I was here by your side." I saw the old homestead. I looked all in vain For the friends of my boyhood I'll never see again Like myself some have sailed over the dark briny deep While others 'neath the green mossy bank are asleep The time is short, love, when I must away Any my poor old tired body shall moulder to clay But, I pray the dear Lord will have mercy on me And grant me my comrades once more for me to see There is hope in my heart like a bright shining star For I see the great portals are standing ajar Inviting us all for a look there and see Our own home in heaven, astorin macree.
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