Friday, July 6, 2012

Family Friday: My Great-Grandmother

I'd like to get back into Family Friday posts.  Today I'd like to talk about my Great-Grandmother, Mary Ann McGlynn.  She was born in 1881 in the heart of Anthracite coal country.  She was the 4th of 5 children and the 2nd of 3 daughters.  Her father was a coal miner and a Civil War Veteran.  She and her mother are both members of that long line of strong, Irish women that I know I've mentioned before.  Her father died in 1889 and by 1905 she and her family had moved to New York City where she was working as a dressmaker with her younger sister Maggie.  This is Mary Ann McGlynn:

Don't you just love the look of old photos?  I have no idea what year this was taken or why it was taken, but I'm glad that it was.  I have to wonder if it was taken for my Great-Grandfather and sent to him.  They must have known each other and maybe even grown up together.  I know in 1900 they were both living in the same area and by 1910 they were married and had had their first daughter.  I like to think that the 2 of them wrote letters to each other after she moved to New York and eventually decided to marry so she moved back to Pennsylvania.

My GGmother had 5 children.  She was pregnant with the 5th when her husband died in the fall of 1918.  She had to figure out a way to keep her family going and at some point ran a small shop out of the front room of her home.  I don't know the name of the shop or everything that was sold there or even how long she ran it, but I remember my grandmother once telling me that sweets and bread were sold there.  In the late 1920s and early 1930s, my GGmother became tax collector for the Borough of Coaldale, PA.

She passed away in 1936 before her youngest had even finished high school.  My Mom never got to meet her grandmother which makes me a little sad.  Especially since I think so highly of my grandmother and I'm sure there was a lot of my GGmother in her.

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