OK, just gotta check the 1860 US Census for single Catherine Dunns, crosscheck ’em back against 1855, and THEN we can go to immigration records!
Of our six remaining eventually-married Catherine Dunns, three had married by 1860, and we’ve already found two of them — Catharine Dunn Barry (#5) and Catharine Dunn Kerwin (#7). We didn’t find Catharine Dunn Donnal (#2), who married in MA in 1856.
We should find Catherine Dunns #8-10 still single, along with the women still left on the 1855 elimination list. Any other single Catherine Dunns in the 1860 Census in MA will need to be added to the list as Catherine Dunn #11 and onward.
The girl from Southborough in 1855 shows up in the 1860 US Census and the 1865 US Census, still in her parents’ house, and still a bit young to have been Catherine Dunn #8, so #8 remains a contender without a clear 1855 match or post-1855 match.
I found six single women in the 1860 US Census worth looking at.
- Catherine Dunn (26), EBY 1834, in service with the Calkins family; Roxbury, Ward 5
- Catherine Dunn (20), EBY 1840, in service with the Richards family; Boston, Ward 6
- Catherine Dunn (20), EBY 1840, in rooming house; North Chelsea, MA
- Catharine Dunn (18), EBY 1842, in rooming house with sisters; Boston, Ward 9
- Katie Dunn (20), EBY 1840, daughter of Stephen & Katie Dunn; Monson, MA
- Katy Dunn (19), EBY 1841, in a rooming house; Newton, MA
Only Monson is in central/western Massachusetts, but Catherines #8-10 were married in central/western Massachusetts. This Katie’s parents’ names don’t match any of our prior Catherine Dunns, but it would be odd for her to leave her family to go to eastern Massachusetts to be in service, then return to her family for more than 5 years. I’m going to disqualify her on that count.
As for the women from the greater Boston area, 19-year-old Katy Dunn is in the right town, if too young, but we’ve already seen women age two years in five, so it’s not that strange. We’ll add her to the list. This is the first time K-versions of the name have shown up.
Then, just to be sure, I thought I’d go through the 1865 Massachusetts Census. That produced 14 appropriately-aged, Irish-born Catherine Dunns and variants, some of whom we’d seen before and plenty of whom didn’t match for various reasons. I found the girl who’d been in service with the Mills family of Springfield and was still there — so that’s not her. Another was the Katie Dunn in Monson we dispensed with above. And 11 were women for whom Dunn was their married name. That left only one, a 27-year-old Catharine Dunn living in a Brookline, MA, rooming house/multiple-family-dwelling.
This leaves us with the following to look through immigration for:
- Catharine Dunn #2 (Thomas & Catherine), EBY 1828, m. 1856 in Whately, MA
- Catharine Dunn #5 (Michael & Mary), EBY 1831, m. 1857 in Great Barrington, MA
- Catharine Dunn #7 (Patrick & Catharine), EBY 1834, m. 1858 in Boston, MA
- Catherine Dunn #8 (Patrick & Mary), EBY 1836, m. 1869 in Worcester, MA
- Catherine Dunn #9 (parents unknown), EBY 1839, m. 1869 in Springfield, MA
- Catherine Dunn #10 (William & Mary), EBY 1844, m. 1868 in Northampton, MA
- Catherine Dunn #11 (parents unknown), EBY 1834, in service in Roxbury, MA
- Catherine Dunn #12 (parents unknown), EBY 1840, in service in Boston, Ward 6
- Catherine Dunn #13 (parents unknown), EBY 1840, rooming house in N. Chelsea, MA
- Catharine Dunn #14 (parents unknown), EBY 1842, rooming house in Boston, Ward 9
- Katy Dunn #15 (parents unknown), EBY 1841, rooming house in Newton, MA
- Catharine Dunn #16 (parents unknown), EBY 1838, rooming house in Brookline, MA
With a dozen Catherines to track, and less sense that I’d excluded people, I was cautiously hopeful. I started with Massachusetts Passenger and Crew Listings, 1820-1963, which was handy since our oldest candidate was born in Ireland in 1828. Because I’d have little or no way to match immigration records to any of the other details I had about these women, I decided I was only interested in the ones arriving before 1855 — the ones that could actually be our Catherine.
There were fewer than two dozen appropriately named people (I included “C Dunn”s) but only six who were born in the right range and arrived in time to be in service with the Kenricks by 1855.
Irish 15-year-old “Cath. Dunn” (EBY 1838) arrived in Boston on 12 November 1853 from Liverpool on Meridian, traveling apparently alone but listed among a crop of Irish girls declaring they intended to make the U.S. their new home.
The arrival of Irish 17-year-old “Cathe Dunn” (EBY 1836) in Boston earlier that year (18 Jan 1853) on Moses Wheeler was much the same, but how the clerk filled out the page tells the story more strikingly:
[Image: Passenger Log from Moses Wheeler, arrived Boston 18 January 1853; Massachusetts Passenger and Crew Listings, 1820-1963.]
Infant “Catha. Dunn” is marked as born in Ireland, just like her parents William and Bridget, but she had not yet reached her first birthday when they arrived in Boston from Liverpool on James H. Shepard on 26 April 1841. Their ship, too, was full of Irish emigrants who weren’t looking back. While we don’t have any Catharines on the list with parents named William and Bridget, it’s certainly true that we have some whose parents we don’t know but who have EBY 1840 or 1841. (NB: I can’t find the family in the 1850 U.S. Census.)
I shudder to imagine what some of these families faced. But my heart broke a little for Irish 14-year-old “Cath. Dunn” (EBY 1834) who arrived in Boston on 24 June 1848 from Liverpool aboard Conrad with her two little brothers, Pat and Phillip, ages 9 and 3, and no parents.
Irish 15-year-old Catharine Dunn (EBY 1833) had her 17-year-old sister Mary with her when they arrived in Boston on 26 July 1848 from Liverpool on Oxnard. Both listed their occupation as “Servant.”
The odd one of the bunch, and the last Boston arrival before our 1855 deadline, was an Irish “Cath Dunn” of unrecorded age (only one on her ship not recorded), who arrived in Boston from St. John, Newfoundland on Ann, stating her intention to make the U.S. her home.
This doesn’t take into account arrivals into Providence/Newport (RI), New York/Ellis Island, Maine/NH, or those who arrived over land from Canada. Of those sources, New York/Ellis Island would be the other big one. More on that in the next post.