06 March 2010

Surname Saturday - 11: Kennedy

Kennedy was the maiden name of my paternal grandmother's mother. My grandmother felt a strong connection to JFK and his family because of the possible relation. Since our Kennedys came from County Offaly and the famous Kennedys from County Wexford, we're probably not related.

1. Kevin Joseph HUIGENS

2. Joseph Anthony HUIGENS
3. Shirley Ann OGDEN

4. Joseph Andrew HUIGENS (b. 9 Mar 1891 near Creighton, Knox Co., NE, m. 18 Feb 1914 at St. Ludgers Catholic Church in Creighton, Knox Co., NE, d. 8 Nov 1957 in Rushville, Sheridan Co., NE)
5. Mary Julia KAIN (b. 19 May 1896 in Knox Co., NE, d. 29 Apr 1979 in Rushville, Sheridan Co., NE)

10. Francis J. "Frank" KAIN (b. 14 Oct 1861 in Clinton Co., IA, m. 14 Feb 1888 at St. Irenaeus Catholic Church in Lyons, Clinton Co., IA, d. 12 Dec 1930 in Yankton, Yankton Co., SD)
11. Margaret H. "Maggie" KENNEDY (b. 9 Sep 1864 in Clinton Co., IA, d. 8 Dec 1831 in Creighton, Knox Co., NE)

22. John KENNEDY (b. 2 Jun 1826? in King's County, Ireland, m. 10 Nov 1854 in ?, d. 6 Nov 1913 in Clinton, Clinton Co., IA)
23. Hanora COLLINS (b. 25 Mar 1830 in Glenbrohane, County Limerick, Ireland, d. 24 Nov 1888 in Clinton, Cinton Co., IA)

44. Michael KENNEDY (b. ? in Ireland, m. ? in ?, d. ? in ?)
45. Unknown NOLAURD? (b. ? in Ireland, d. ? in ?)

The name of John Kennedy's father and his mother's maiden name comes from a transcription of his death record found in the Clinton Library's genealogy department. The informant was John Sheppard, the husband of John Kennedy's neice, Anna (Kennedy) Sheppard. When he died, John was living with them across the St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Clinton. I'm not sure how accurate the information is. I can find no record of anyone with a last name of Nolaurd in any on-line source.

The beginning of the information on John Kennedy came from two hand-written sheets of family history from his granddaughter Eileen Kennedy. John also has a brief biography in an 1879 history of Clinton County.

John Kennedy's birth year is a mystery. Most of the earlier census records point to 1825 or 1826. As he got older, it switched to 1820. His obituary used that date and list 93 years old. That is also the year used on his grave marker and on the death record.

Hanora was a widow with two young daughters when John married her. In his biography he gives the date of his marriage, but not the location. It may have been in Iowa, Illinois or Wisconsin.

Anna Kennedy's mother was very likely John's sister, Mary. She first married a Stephen Lawler in Chicago, then a John Kennedy in Clinton. Her obituary contradicts a lot of the information given by my great-great-grandfather in his bio. It also contradicts some of the census records. No surprise there. Lots of opportunities for further research into this line as a way of getting over this brick wall, just wish they didn't have such common Irish names in a heavily Irish place like Chicago.

The Kains and Kennedys had adjoining farms in Hampshire Township in Clinton County, just west of Lyons, IA. Frank and Maggie had known each other from childhood and were married on Valentine's Day, 1888 at St. Iraneaus Catholic Church in Lyons.

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