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Starrett & Gillespie Families

Contributed for use in USGenWeb Archives by Shirley Gillespie Moore,
Date: 18 Sep 2006
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Thomas and Anne Isabella Starrett Gillespie, and children Anna Maria, Margaret, and William James, arrived at Castle Gardens, NY on 19 Apr 1886, aboard the SS Furnessia after crossing the Atlantic ocean. Anna Maria Gillespie Allard wrote in a letter to her sister Margaret Gillespie Menter dated Mar 14 1964, "... they left their home in Ireland on the 9th of April 1886 on a Fri morning & caught a train in Fintona. ... they came over on an immigrant ship.  Two weeks from the day they left, they were in Grand Island, NE. On Saturday they got to St. Paul, NE & took a wagon to Uncle William Starrett's home near O'Connor in Greeley County.  ... they settled on a farm near Uncle William & around 1893 the Thomas Gillespies moved to a farm near Wolbach."  Anna Maria was 10 1/2 years old when she left Ireland.

I have more information on this ship if anyone would wants it.  I also have a mirror from an Anchor Line's ship, and a passenger list for those traveling Salon class in 1887 on the SS Furnessia.

Furnessia_ship.gif (116374 bytes)
SS Furnessia basic info on ship

SS Furnessia passenger list

Gillespie Homestead

earlier photo

recent photo

Charles Starrett, Sr. Family

The first four names on the passenger list are of Greeley Co immigrants and my great great grandfather, Charles Starrett (Sr) age 55, who is traveling with three of his children, John Starrett age 25, Maria Starrett age 20, and Charles Starrett (Jr) age 18. They were from the Fintona area of Co Tyrone Ireland.

Charles Starrett (Sr) age, shown as 55 on the manifest, is quite a bit off from what is shown on his headstone in Hillside Cemetery Wolbach NE.  It shows he died in 1898 at the age of 93 yrs and 22 days.  Charles' first wife and mother of his children was Mary Robinson whom he married in Clogher Co Tyrone in 1844.  She died sometime after the birth of their youngest child, Ellen Emily Ann, in 1859, and his second marriage to Eliza McCoy Mooney (a widow) in 1861, in Fintona County Tyrone.

John Starrett died 31 Dec 1889, in St Francis Hospital Grand Island Hall Co NE. We might assume that he was a sickly child as he was the only one of Charles' and Mary's children who was not educated to read and write. From a newspaper article, we know there was a major snow storm on Thursday before he died which closed the tracks between Grand Island and Greeley. We also know, from his probate records, that his brother, William, sent telegrams to his brother, David, in Belfast County Antrim Ireland, and his sister, Marjery Starrett Brandon, in Keswick Cumberland England, notifying them of his passing.  We do not know with certainty, but are assuming, that he is buried next to his father in Hillside Cemetery, Wolbach Nebraska.

Maria Starrett married James M. Williamson (b 1856 in England) in Greeley County.  Their children, Elizabeth Mary b 1885, Sarah Ann b 1887, and Charles James b 1895, were all born in Greeley County sometime between 1895 and the 1900 US census.  They moved to the Kent/Ionia Counties in Michigan where his mother and one of his sisters were living. Maria was 95 years of age when she died in 1946, having outlived her parents, husband, all of her siblings, both daughters, and one grandson. Maria and James are buried in the Oakwood Cemetery Lowell Michigan.

Charles Starrett (Jr) married Sarah Scott (b 1858 Ireland) in Greeley County. They had no children that we know of, and Sarah died in 1919. Charles subsequently married Rosa Concannon Knowlton, a widow, in Greeley Co. He died in 1934, and both he and Sarah are buried in Hillside Cemetery Wolbach Nebraska. Rosa died and is buried in California.

We would love to know more about the Pat Gillespie family listed right below them, as we are still looking for the 3 older sons from our Thomas Gillespie's first marriage.

Other surnames on this manifest which show up in Greeley County are: Gillespie, Scott, Kelly, Smythe, and Mooney

Ellen Stirrat

Passenger list from the SS State of Nevada arriving Castle Gardens New York, 24 June 1881, from Glasgow Scotland and Larne Ireland

The fifth person on this list is Ellen Stirrat.  She would be the youngest daughter of Charles and Mary Robinson Starret, and an immigrant to Greeley Co from Co Tyrone IRE.  Ellen worked for Hannah Philan (Phalen) 65 born IRE in Scotia NE, before marrying her first husband John Henry Paxton in 1886.  He worked in the mines near Laramie WY, and he subsequently died from injuries received in a mining accident.  Their only child, Anna, was born in Laramie WY, 9 Dec 1887, and less than a year old when she lost her father in 1888.

Ellen later took Anna to Crested Butte CO where she ran a boarding house and did the laundry and cooking for miners.  She married again in 1892 a Philipp Schneider who was a local dairyman and who delivered milk to her boarding house.  After, Philipp passed away, she moved back to Greeley Co, Spring Creek Pct, where she can be found living with her daughter and son-in-law, Anna and Henry Almonrode in 1920.  By 1930, the Almonrodes had moved to the Griswold Iowa area and Ellen was living with her sister-in-law, Ellen McClung Starrett, widow of her brother William in Greeley Center.  Sometime before her death in 1943 and perhaps after the death of her sister-in-law in 1939, Ellen Starrett Paxton Schneider moved to the Griswold Iowa area.  She is buried in the Pleasant Twp Cemetery near Griswold Cass Co Iowa.

Other surnames I see from the manifest that can be found in Greeley Co are: Gorham, Scott

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