For many years I have been trying to determine the origina of a family consisting of Phillip and Patrick McCloskey who emigrated from Co. Derry to Mobile, Alabama. They left at least one brother, Bernard, behind in Ireland. Patrick was a reasonably wealthy man judging by his estate and he traveled in the U.S. In 1850-51, he was escorting his two young step-sisters on a tour of the west. They reached Dubuque, Iowa and Patrick was called to Paris, France on business. The two young women remained behind, at the mother house of the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. They ultimately joined the order - Bridget (about 1834 to 1915) became Sister Mary Gonzaga, BVM and Margaret (1831 to 1854) became Sister Mary Peter, BVM. Sister Mary Peter was in delicate health, probably TB, and she died on Dec. 27, 1854, one day before Patrick died in Paris on Dec. 28, 1854. Patrick's will and some letters related to his estate reveal that the step-sisters had a full brother, John, who had also come to Dubuque, Iowa, bought land and was killed in an accident in 1852. Further, there were two nephews of Patrick also living in Dubuque, Iowa in 1851 - Bernard and Phillip. Bernard married my great-great aunt, Ellen O'Hern in 1853. Phillip never married and died in 1892. An additional niece of Patrick was identified as Jane McCloskey, daughter of Bernard the brother in Ireland, who had emigrated to Mobile before 1820 to live with her uncles there. Jane married George Westfeldt who, coincidentally, was appointed co-executor of Patrick's estate. Jane and George started out in Mobile, moved to New York and then returned to raise their family in Hoopers Creek, No Carolina.
In 1855 a letter from Sister Mary Gonzaga (Bridget McCloskey) indicated she had written to her mother about the death of her sister Margaret and did suspect that "poor mother" might plan to "come out west". Which leads one to believe that the mother was living on the east coast.
In 1850 Patrick wrote a letter from Newport - presumably Rhode Island. I think perhaps his step-mother lived there.
I know this is a long tale but am hoping someone might have more insight than I.
As with so many McCloskey families, this one also claims a connection to John Cardinal McCloskey of New York.
So--- there is a family of three brothers - Patrick, Phillip and Bernard (And I add a Michael to this group because my g-g-uncle Bernard was Patrick's nephew and a naming traditionalist -- his first son was Michael) and a second family consisting of John, Bridget and Margaret. All of the younger generation were born in the early 1830s.
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