I replied in email directly to Irene but I suppose I should also post the info to the forum so others can see it. Here's my note to Irene.
I finally located the missing papers. It turns out my grandfather's name could be John or James. On his Marriage Certificate he's listed as John H. Hobbins but everywhere else it's James with no middle initial. That includes my father's Baptismal Certificate, the deed to his cemetary plot, and his death certificate.
The death certificate says he died May 15, 1941 in Albany, NY. His birth date is listed as Jan 1, 1859 and it lists his birthplace as Ireland. It says he was widowed and gives his wife's name as Helen Doyle. So I wonder if he remarried after the split with my grandmother. His parent's are listed as Michael Hobbins and Mary Burns, both listed with birthplace Ireland also. He's buried at St. Peter's Church in Saratoga Springs, NY [lot 40].
The Marriage Certificate says he married my grandmother, Julia E. Costello on Nov. 21, 1892 at St. Peter's Church in Saratoga Springs, NY. Again, there he's listed as John H. Hobbins. Weird.
My notes from my conversation with my father so long ago indicate his father's family was from County Mayo. It was his mother's family that came from County Galway. Those notes also indicate that James had two brothers - one who was a RR engineer who may have moved to Kentucky and another who was an artist who may have moved to Montana. My father really didn't seem to know what became of them and he wasn't aware of any marriages or children. And he couldn't remember their names. By the time we had that conversation, he was in his late 70s and as it turned out, showing early signs of Alzheimers.
So my grandfather James Hobbins (1/1/1859 to 5/15/41) married Julia E Costello (8/14/1870 to 4/1/44). They had three children:
-- Mary , who died as a child (no dates known)
-- Francis Henry, my father (10/8/1898 to 2/21/84) [although his Baptismal Certificate lists Oct 11th, he always said his mother insisted they made a mistake]
-- Kate Hobbins (I don't have her dates either but she was a younger sister)
There seems to be an issue over what my Aunt Kate's real name was as well. I could swear my father told me her real name was Kathleen. A cousin listed her as Kathyrn Agatha in notes she sent me years ago. But Kate signed my parents' Marriage Certificate as a witness using Catherine with a "C". On the other hand, I have a copy of the invitation to her wedding that names her Katherine with a "K". No wonder I get confused.
My cousin's notes said that my father's Great Grandparents are buried at St. Mary's of the Visitation in Laurelsville (NY?). But it's not clear if she meant my mother's or father's side of the family. In the context of the notes, I would guess my grandmother's side (maiden name Costello).
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