My Adventure Through Our Family Tree Branches

For over 50 years my Dad researched both his and my Mom's family tree branches - and loved every minute of it! Trying to fulfill the promise I made him the last month of his life, I have spent the past four years continuing where he left off - finding out about all the many family members who came before us, from the many branches of our family trees. The histories will still be published as my Dad always wanted. But what he wanted most was to share the stories of the people who came before us - the places they lived, the cultures of the times, the families they created, and the circumstances - good and bad - that would one day lead to us, their descendants. These are the stories of my Mom's families. . . .

Surnames in this Blog


Sunday, July 3, 2011

SUNDAY'S OBITUARY - Thomas Joseph McCaffrey (1832-1896)

Thomas Joseph McCaffrey
My 3rd great-Grandfather
[From Rome-Tribune, May 23, 1896, Rome, Georgia]
Was Ended in the Death of Mr. T. J. McCaffrey
A Loyal Citizen and Soldier
Although Born in Boston, He was Devoted to the South,
the Home of His Adoption
 "The sudden and unexpected death of Ex-Councilman Thomas J. McCaffrey was a shock to his many friends in Rome.
He had just completed a term as member of the city council from the Fifth Ward, a position that he filled with ability and honor.
Mr. McCaffrey had been ailing since February last, and when he was stricken Thursday night his wife and two young daughters did everything they could for him, his sons being away from home.
A messenger was sent for Dr. McCall, but before he could get there Mr. McCaffrey realized that he was dying and said, "Charlotte, I am dying, pray for me!"
A few gasps for breath and his spirit took its flight and his daughters gently laid him down.
Mr. McCaffrey was born in Boston on April 17, 1834 but removed to Baltimore while a young man and married a lady of a most excellent family. While the war came on he went over to the South and made cannon for the Confederacy in Selma, Alabama.
When Forrest and Wilson were fighting around Selma he left the foundry and took part in that last engagement with Forrest.
As it appeared in Rome-Tribune
In the meantime, all the wives of confederate soldiers were ordered to leave Baltimore and Mrs. McCaffrey carried her baby in her arms across the lines. She and her husband were ever devoted to each other and her heart was with him in every undertaking.
At the breaking out of the war he was connected to the United States navy yard but, in 1861 came over to the south with the balance of the Maryland line. He served under Commodore Page and Commodore apR. Jones and was captured in the fight at Selma just before the surrender.
After the war he was connected with nearly all the rolling mills and furnaces in the construction department through Alabama, in Brierfield, Shelby and others up to the time he came to assist in the building of the water works by Noble Bros.
He served two terms as mayor of South Rome and in 1894 was twice a member of Rome city council. He was a gentleman of splendid business ability, and was respected by the people of the city of his adoption.
Besides his wife, who survives him, he leaves two married daughters, Mrs. Reece Miller, of this city, and Mrs. Charlie Flemming, of Birmingham, and Misses Lottie and Agnes, single daughters, and three sons, Charlie, Will and Joe McCaffrey, all grown up.
Mr. McCaffrey was a good citizen and served the country of his adoption well in the troublous days of the war.
He was a member of the Catholic church and his funeral will occur there this morning. The family wished to have it postponed for the arrival of his sister from Maryland, but were unable to do so.
Mr. McCaffrey was the sole of loyalty to his friends and he will be sadly missed by those who held him in such high esteem. He was a member of the Royal Arcanuma in high standing."
THOMAS J. McCAFFREY & SONS  (seated L to R: Thomas, Charles; standing L to R: Willie, Joseph, James) ca. 1893
          Thomas Joseph McCaffrey (April 17, 1832-May 21, 1896) married Charlotte Elizabeth McCluskey (February 15, 1838-June 12, 1917), on August 15, 1853 in her hometown of Philadelphia. Six of their 13 children preceded him in death. Their 3rd child and oldest surviving daughter was Elizabeth Agnes "Lizzie" McCaffrey Flemming (December 23, 1858-July 17, 1922), my great-great-grandmother.
          Since at least the age of 18, Thomas had worked as a "pattern maker". [A pattern-maker transformed a design into a wooden form that was sent to a local foundry which then produced a part cast in iron. From National Park Service brochure]. His talents would have been indispensable during the war.
          Thomas is buried next to his wife Charlotte in Myrtle Hill Cemetery in Rome, Georgia.

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