Michael SPEARS and Mary STRANGE
Ottawa Front, Gloucester Township in the 1830's

also Richard CORNWALL and Catherine O'HALLORAN
Borrisokane, County Tipperary to Ottawa, Canada - Some to Chicago, Illinois

November 15, 2006:

Hello everyone
I am trying to locate more info about my gr-gr-grandfather, Michael (Thomas?) Spears, 
an early settler on the Ottawa Front (Gloucester Township), and his descendants. 
He was born  c1801. (Scotland or Ireland?) I would like to find out which country 
and date of arrival in Canada.
In 1833 he was assessed for 100 acres of Lot 26. He married Mary Strange and they 
had 11 children. There is a one-line mention of him in Harry and Olive Walker's book, Carleton Saga 
in the section on the history of Gloucester Township.
I doubt he was a "notable" . In 1851 census he and his wife lived in a log house 
and were listed as farmers.
Have any of you run across the name of SPEARS or STRANGE in your research?
Thank you
Carol Scott

Hi Carol:
Thanks for your e-mail regarding your GGGrandparents.
Michael Spears and his wife were in Bytown by 1831 when they had a child baptized at Notre Dame Church on Sussex Drive.
Here's the record:
4 Dec 1831
Baptism of William, 4 days old, son to Michael Spears and Mary Strange of Gloucester
Godparents: Michael Lawlor and Maria Cullen    
M. Lalor, Parish Priest

I just remembered there is a three paragraph item  about Michael Spears and 
family in a booklet by Robert Serre, Pioneer Families of the Gloucester Quarries in Eastern Canada.
Mr. Serre sent me the text  and I am planning to order a copy of his book.
In the text he provided: the names of Michael Spears' eleven children and marriages 
for some of them. Many Gloucester names turn up, mostly Irish.
Through your web-site links I found a reference to a Catherine Spears marrying 
a HANRAHAN., probably moving to USA. The dates looked right for
Catherine, the 9th child of Michael and Mary (Ann?). I am hoping for a reply from 
the e-mail query I sent.
Agnes, the youngest Spears child, was likely my gr-grandmother...
Carol Scott

Here are Michael and Mary in the 1881 Census for Gloucester:
1881 Census Place:	Gloucester, Russell, Ontario, Canada
	Source:	FHL Film 1375865  NAC C-13229  Dist 104  SubDist E  Div 2  Page 27  Family 127
	Sex	Marr	Age	Origin	Birthplace
John SPIOR	M	M	36	Irish	Ontario
	Occ:	Farmer	Religion:	Catholic	
Mary SPIOR	F	M	36	Irish	Quebec
			Religion:	Catholic	
Michael SPIOR	M		14	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Thomas SPIOR	M		12	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
John SPIOR	M		10	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
James SPIOR	M		7	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Anny SPIOR	F		4	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Helene SPIOR	F		2	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Michael SPIRE	M	M	81	Irish	Ireland
			Religion:	Catholic	
Mary SPIRE	F	M	75	Irish	Ireland
			Religion:	Catholic
and their son, William Spears, also in 1881:

1881 Census Place:	Cumberland, Russell, Ontario, Canada
	Source:	FHL Film 1375865  NAC C-13229  Dist 104  SubDist C  Div 2  Page 27  Family 105+
	Sex	Marr	Age	Origin	Birthplace
William SPEARS	M	M	49	Irish	Ontario
	Occ:	Farmer	Religion:	Catholic	
Alice SPEARS	F	M	40	Irish	Ireland
			Religion:	Catholic	
Mary Ann SPEARS	F		20	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
James SPEARS	M		19	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Margratt SPEARS	F		18	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Sarrah SPEARS	F		15	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Alice SPEARS	F		13	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Ellen SPEARS	F		11	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Catherin SPEARS	F		8	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
William SPEARS	M		7	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Lenes SPEARS	F		5	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic	
Mickel SPEARS	M		3	Irish	Ontario
			Religion:	Catholic
November 17, 2006: Hello Al, Is it possible to add another name in connection to the SPEARS family? Actually this may be another search completely. Agnes Spears, youngest child of Michael and Mary Spears, married my great grandfather, Richard CORNWALL in Ottawa, June 21 1881. This started as a search for the Cornwall line. We can trace the Cornwalls in Ottawa from 1868 on. I am trying to locate the county in Ireland (and year), that Richard Cornwall's parents came from in Ireland. Richard's parents were Richard (1) Cornwall and Catherine O' Halloran. We can locate Catherine O'Halloran Cornwall, widow, with three sons, (Richard 2, James and John) in Ottawa from 1868 on... and their descendants. What we cannot find out is where Catherine and Richard sr. came from and when. The only clue is on Catherine's death registration (Ottawa) 1895 where her son, Richard listed as birthplace, "Burrows" Ireland. All other official papers just list "Ireland" We can find no record of father, Richard Sr. ever getting to Canada. Since their last child was born in Ireland 1857/8, we are assuming that Catherine alone, or with Richard came to Canada 1858-1868. Perhaps she was joining a married sister, whose name we do not know? Griffiths Valuation of Ireland lists a tenant, Richard Cornwall in the 1850's in North Tipperary; Parish of Borrisokane, Townland : Killeen. This is our only clue, but it may not be our Richard Cornwall. Both Catherine and her son were unable to read or write, so no records were kept. Oral family history has Richard and Catherine Cornwall coming from Tipperary, or Cork, or ..Limerick / Galway. Are there any other descendants from families in this area and period who are on your web ? Does "Burrows" strike a cord?? Is there a way to link the surname Cornwall with O' Hallorans anywhere in 1850s Ireland (RC) south..Cornwall surname is unusual for Ireland and searching always turns up the geographical location of Cornwall. We have exhausted all records from 1860's on, in Canada and US census, (where the two younger sons moved in 1881-82). No one reported the place name in Ireland. Can you suggest a strategy for locating the Cornwall-O' Halloran connection in Ireland.? Anyone researching Cornwalls in Ontario is likely a relative of mine and we are all stumped...... or alternately how and when they emigrated to Canada? Any advice appreciated. Carol Scott
January 8, 2007: Hello Al Since my last e-mail regarding Richard Cornwall and his wife Catherine O'Halloran, I have discovered further information which definitely lists their birthplace as County Tipperary. I have also ascertained that their older two sons, Richard jr (b. 1852/3 ) and James born 1854-6 were also born in Co. Tipperary. Since the last child, John was born in 1857/9 in Canada, I am assuming they could have arrived in Canada abt 1856 (+2 years?). Catherine O'Halloran Cornwall's death registration lists "Burrows" as the parish or townland in Tipperary, so I am concentrating my research in the parishes of Borrisokane and Borrisoleigh. I understand a number of Carleton County Irish came from Tipperary? Would any of your readers recognize the names of my ancestors? There is a eight to ten year period from their possible arrival year until Catherine Cornwall, a widow appears in the 1871 census and a 1868 Ottawa city directory. Perhaps the Cornwall family lived outside of Ottawa city itself. Any suggestions welcome as to where to look from here. Thanks Carol Scott ______________________ Hi Carol: Thanks for your e-mail. A lot of the original settlers in the Ottawa area came from the Borrisokane area in Tipperary. And, a couple of weeks ago I came across a reference in one of the early Ottawa newspapers (I think) which stated that many of the original pioneers called their hometown area "Burris" which could explain your reference to Burrows. I'll add your e-mail to our Spears / Cornwall page and we'll see if anyone else has heard of "Burris". I've also seen a document in which a man gave his Irish place of origin as "Two Mile Borris". Another old spelling was Burris O'Kane. ... Al 1881 Census Place: Nepean, Carleton, Ontario, Canada Source: FHL Film 1375867 NAC C-13231 Dist 108 SubDist A Div 1 Page 62 Family 283 Sex Marr Age Origin Birthplace Catherine CORNWALL F Widow 55 Irish Ireland Religion: Catholic Richard CORNWALL M 28 Irish Ireland Occ: Saw Filer Religion: Catholic James CORNWALL M 26 Irish Ireland Occ: Labourer Religion: Catholic John CORNWALL M 22 Irish Ireland Occ: Carpenter Religion: Catholic
February 23, 2007: Hello Al I now have confirmation from Co. Tipperary that my ancestors, Richard Cornwall and Catherine (O) Halloran were married in the RC parish of Borrisokane, N. Tipperary 24 Feb. 1852. There are no baptismal records in Borrisokane of their first two sons Richard jr b. 1853 and James b. abt 1855 "in Ireland". They must have been on the move soon after the marriage. Their last child, John, was born in Ottawa abt 1858/9. So far we can find no record of the family's whereabouts or arrival until Catherine appears as a widow in an 1868 Ottawa city directory. Sure wish they had been farmers. At least there would be land records to check! The Cornwalls were Roman Catholic, came to an urban area and later (1850s), unlike many of the Protestant North Tipperary Irish who settled in the area. Any suggestions as to how to proceed from here? Carol Scott
February 24, 2007: Thanks to Sue for the following: I'm not researching this family but did find this in the 1900 - 1930 Chicago censuses, Social Security records, WWI draft registrations, California death registrations, etc. James Cornwall Jr., born March 1855 in Ireland married about 1884 in Illinois, USA, Bridget McGowen / McGowan, a daughter of Patrick and Ann McGowen (Patrick was born abt 1820 in Canada and Ann abt 1827 in Ireland). Bridget was born in July of 1857 in Canada. They had 6 children, all survived to adulthood. Their children were: Kathleen M. (4 Dec 1884 - 1 May 1856 in Los Angeles, California, USA); Bernard James(26 Jan 1887 - 8 Aug 1968 in Alameda, California); James V.(Oct 1888); Harold J.)20 Oct 1890 or 1891 - 9 May 1964 in Los Angeles); Ann (Nov 1892); and Mary Mae (Apr 1895). All children were born in Illinois. James and Bridget are in the 1900 - 1920 Chicago censuses. James and brother John moved down to Illinois in 1881. Next door to James lives his brother John, born Jan 1858 in Canada and became a naturalized US citizen 13 Oct 1890. He married Mary J. Grady abt 1885 in Illinois. They had 8 children, but just 5 survived: Frank Philip (24 Aug 1889); Norman James (8 Aug 1891); John M.(12 Sep 1893 - Oct 1970); Raymond T. (10 Jan 1896 - Jan 1978); and Catherine M. (21 Dec 1897 - June 1984). All children born in Chicago. John and Mary are in the 1900 - 1930 Chicago censuses. Hope this adds to your info, Sue
E-mail Carol Scott, Sue and Al Lewis

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