Having established that the 1914 WWI enlistee, the 1919 groom, and the 1921 Head of Household are all the Stephen Joseph McNally of my family, I want to focus on the Summer 1893 birth index listing and on the 1901 Census of England listings for Kirkdale Industrial School.
The 1893 birth index listing, which records the birth of one “Stephen McNally” in Toxeth Park, Lancashire, in July, August, or September of 1893, doesn’t specify the actual birthdate or the names of any child’s parents. Having confirmed that the 1911 Census of England entry for the McNally family of Broughton, Lancashire, is highly unlikely to be our McNally family, a return to the birth index (which covers years before and beyond 1893, as well) shows that there were at least a few McNally families living in and producing children in Lancashire around that time. Again, this makes a certain kind of sense when you consider geography:
[Map from http://www.edinphoto.org.uk/0_MAPS/0_map_britain_1987_enlarged.jpg]
Toxeth Park is an inner-city area on the south side of Liverpool, a bustling sea port just across the Irish Sea from Ireland. This is all worth keeping in mind when we examine the 1901 Census of England entry for Kirkdale Industrial School.
[Image from 1901 Census of England, citation in the comments.]
Three boys named McNally — Michael, Patrick, and Joseph.
Michael and Patrick were almost certainly brothers. They appear in St. Barnabas Parish, Liverpool, in the 1891 Census of England, a decade prior, as 10 months old and 3 years old, respectively, in the house of their parents, John and Mary A. McNally. St. Barnabas Anglican Church is about a mile from Toxeth Park Cemetery. The birth index shows three Patrick McNallys born in Lancashire in 1888 — one in Toxeth Park in Spring (Apr-May-Jun) and one in “Barrow F.” in Summer (July-Aug-Sep). Then there are three Michael McNallys born in Lancashire in 1890 — one in Wolverhampton in the Spring (Apr-May-Jun), one in Liverpool in the Summer (July-Aug-Sep), and one in L********r (Lancaster? — in this case, that is a Liverpool neighborhood) in Fall (Oct-Nov-Dec).
The first candidate seems most likely to be our Patrick, as he is identified in the 1901 Census as being born in Toxeth Park. The second candidate seems the most likely to be our Michael — it would fit most specifically with his being 10 months old when the censustaker registered the McNallys in Spring 1891 and would match that his birthplace is listed as Liverpool in the 1901 Census. Though none of these Michaels was born in Toxeth Park, it would be possible for a woman living in St. Barnabas Parish to deliver children in places that were technically under the different labels of “Toxeth Park” and “Liverpool” or even “Lancaster” (if that’s what the word is and it refers to the neighborhood) without her own residence changing, if she delivered at the house of a friend or midwife for some births and at home for others.
So, is this the family from the 1891 Census? The 1891 record identifies John McNally as a “Galvanising labourer”from Wolverhampton, married to Mary A. McNally, also of Wolverhampton (see map above). They were living in Liverpool at the time, having moved in late 1881 or early 1882, based on the births of their children (the 11-year-old was born in Wolverhampton, but the 9-year-old was born in Liverpool). John was likely employed at the Liverpool shipyards in 1891 — when the family appears in the 1881 Census of England, he’s a “General labourer.”
It seems likely to me that the Patrick McNally and Michael McNally listed as “pauper inmates” of Kirkdale Industrial School were the sons of John McNally and Mary A. McNally of St. Barnabas Parish in Liverpool. But were these boys the brother of the boy listed as Joseph McNally, age 8, born in Liverpool? And is that boy the same as Stephen McNally, born in Toxeth Park in Summer 1893?
At this point, it seems difficult to justify differentiating Toxeth Park and Liverpool, but it should be noted that the birth records for Patrick and Michael identify those locations separately, so cavalierly dismissing the distinction seems fraught. The birth place is not the only flaw, either: Stephen vs. Joseph, and Mary A. vs. Margaret Ellen.
On the latter count, it is relevant that in at least one family account, I have seen Stephen Joseph McNally’s mother identified as “Mary Ellen,” and the leap from “Mary Ellen” to “Mary A.” is close enough to not rule it out. On the former count, it seems noteworthy that our Stephen Joseph adopted as a young man the convention of signing his name “S.J. McNally,” rather than “Stephen McNally.” And the name of his eldest daughter seems pertinent on both counts — Mary Ellen Josephine McNally. And while I have elsewhere called her “Mary” for simplicity’s sake, for most of her life, she was known as “Jo.”
But more on Kirkdale in my next post. I PROMISE!!