James ODLEUM / ODLUM
also Richard ODLUM and Catherine BERGIN / BERRIGAN
November 25, 2005:
Tanya is researching the Odleum / Odlum family from County Offaly (previously called
King's County) in Ireland. There is a James Odleum listed on the 1829 McCabe List who
may be related to her ancestor, Richard Odlum and Margaret GRAY. Maybe a stretch, but
ODLUM is not a common name.
Tanya's ancestor was in Upper New York State and in Buffalo, New York.
Before coming to Bytown to work on the Rideau Canal, some of the workers had previously
been employed on construction of the Erie Canal (Albany to Buffalo) or on the Lachine
Canal in Montreal. Both of these canals were completed in 1825. Work on the Rideau Canal
began in 1826.
There was a major cholera epidemic in 1832. This was the year of very heavy immigration
from Ireland. Cholera was brought to Canada by the passengers on ships arriving at
Quebec City. As immigrants were moved along inland, there were major outbreaks in
Montreal, Prescott, Kingston and Bytown. Some residents of these towns left
for the countryside to wait out the epidemic.
It's possible that the James Odlum on the McCabe List (ML# 205)
is related to Tanya's Odlum's.
Here's her e-mail:
By all means! Please set up a page for James Odl(e)um. The Odlums were from
Offaly (Ireland). I have a family tree if you need it from 1620. Unfortunately,
I have not found a James born in 1790 on this tree. But of course, this is no
surprise. There was a Capt. Frederick Odlum and Benjamin Odlum that were not on
this tree and they were founding fathers of the state of Texas. The only people
on this tree are those that were found during the treemaker's lifetime
(Rev. Graham of Ireland).
I menioned to you I had found a James Odlum in the 1860 Buffalo, Erie, New York, USA
census with his wife, Margaret (b. 1790) and two small girls. The girls (aged under
10) may have had families and would now have descendants that would like to know
I thought James Odl(e)um especially intriguing, maybe because I found him. I still
remember being so excited that I figured out he might be one of the Odlums. He
undoubtedly was not one of the rich Odlums because he was working so hard on the
Rideau Canal. I just hope that other male, you mentioned, was Richard Odlum,
I would love to know where James O. was coming from in Ireland (port). There also
was a Richard Odlum in London, Ontario at about the same time iin history as James
O. who moved his family eventually to Michigan. I have a few statistics on him,
My Richard Odlum was supposed to have died in Kingston, Ontario during a cholera
epidemic. We are still searching for information on this event. He seemed to have
disappeared from the New York census records after 1840. We think he might have
gone to Kingston to work.
It is so coincidental that James Odl(e)um and Richard Odlum were up in the same
neck of the woods circa 1830/40. I just feel there is some connection. I think
the canal and railroad building brought them together some how. What do you think?
Catherine's (Richard's wife) surname was Gray. I believe there was a number of
Gray families in the McCabe group (Robert and Isaac Gray). Do you, by chance, see
them on the McCabe list? Gray is a harder name to research because it is so common.
Thank you ever so much, Al, for your help. I found it difficult to decipher the
McCabe code. You helped me a lot. When the book is published on my ancestor
Catherine (Odlum) Smith, I will send you a copy, if that is O.K. with you.
She was quite a gal, definitely deserving of her Irish heritage.
Hope to hear from you soon.
June 20, 2006:
I have not written you in several months. You put my question
about Richard Odlum on your website, BYTOWN OR BUST.
I have changed my internet address to email@example.com.
July 13, 2004:
Dear Bergin Researchers:
My gr-gr-gr-grandmother was Catherine Bergin/Bergen, born
circa 1820 in Ireland. Her uncle and aunt were Martin Bergin/
Bergen and Mary Bergin/Bergen of Ireland.
I have been researching Catherine's husband, Richard Odlum,
whose family might have been involved in the construction
of the Rideau Canal circa 1829.
When I saw your information on BYTOWN OR BUST, I
noticed a BERGIN family from OFFALY which is where
the ODLUM family came from. I am very interested in
that family. It does contain a Martin and Mary Bergin
from KINGS COUNTY of the right age.
There was no listing of a Catherine Bergin in that group,
born circa 1820 in Ireland. Could there still be missing
people in that family?
Any help in this research would be greatly appreciated.
I believe my Catherine Bergin/Bergen was related to
this NEPEAN family from Kings County, Ireland.
Catherine's uncle and aunt, Martin and Mary Bergin/Bergen
landed in New Orleans by 1850.
E-mail Tanya and Al Lewis
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