Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Frank McCue: A small light that shined in Black '47

As you may know if you are versed in Irish history, the year 1847 was the worst in modern memory for the Irish as a people. It was the most horrible time of the Great Hunger (an Gorta Mór) - a year so terrible that it was later known as Black '47.

I was shocked when I learned that not just one, but four of my great-great-grandparents were born in Ireland during or right around the years of the Great Famine, suffering through their childhoods with what must have been constant hunger pains. It is a miracle that they survived and that I am here today. Perhaps the most amazing survival story of the four belongs to my great-great-grandfather Frank McCue, who was born in the month of February during Black '47 itself and survived infancy during that deathly year.

Frank made it through childhood and eventually out of Ireland, immigrating to the United States and becoming a citizen in 1876. He married Catherine Rogers and worked as a teamster in Boston, Massachusetts to support he and Catherine's six children: Rose, James, Frank, Thomas, Catherine and George (born between 1871 and 1885). The family lived in Boston's South End in various homes within the old "New York Streets" neighborhood.

"New York Streets" neighborhood map courtesy of Mark of the And This is Good Old Boston blog

Sadly, Frank died on October 15, 1899 at the age of 52 after suffering from Pulmonary Tuberculosis for four months. Today is the 114th anniversary of his death. He is buried alongside family members (including his wife Catherine) in Calvary Cemetery, Waltham, Massachusetts.

Francis "Frank" McCue died October 15, 1899 and is buried with his wife Catherine (Rogers) McCue (listed on the back of the stone), sister-in-law Rose Boardman, son-in-law Daniel Driscoll, and several other family members whose names are not listed on the tombstone.

This tribute to the life of Frank McCue has been posted in honor of the anniversary of his death and also as a contribution to Tombstone Tuesday. For more information about Frank, stop by his Find A Grave memorial page. For more of my family members' (and others') tombstones, visit the "Laid to Rest" board on my Pinterest page.


Colleen G. Brown Pasquale said...

Your grandparents survived those difficult times. You have very strong roots!

Colleen G. Brown Pasquale said...

Hello! For Thanksgiving I am thankful for my fellow bloggers who inspire & teach & entertain us all. Please visit my blog where I list your blog as one of my favorites. Colleen


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