Tombstone Tuesday: James Markey and Margaret Kerwin

James Markey and Margaret Kerwin Tombstone

The image above shows the tombstones for my maternal 3rd great-grandfather James Markey (1810-1873) [4] and his wife Margaret Ann Kerwin (1807-1880) [5]. James and Margaret are buried in the Saint Patricks Cemetery, Java Center, Wyoming County, New York, USA.  What I like about this tombstone is that I have their birth places in Ireland to piece together with their biographical information in order to find more about the Markey line in Ireland.

His marker is inscribed:

James Markey
JULY 10, 1873

A native of Ireland

Co. Louth. Parish of Molary.
May his soul rest in peace. Amen.

James Markey was born in Mullary, County Louth, Ireland. He was left an orphan at the age of three and was raised by friends. At the age of twenty-one, he sailed for America and landed in New York. He worked as a farmer and saved his money to enable to him to purchase land, fifty-six acres in Java, Wyoming County, New York. He added to his original purchase until his property was three hundred and sixty acres. He built a home there and lived there until his death on 10 Jul 1873. His age on his tombstone is given as 61, which would make his birth year 1812. A biography written about his family states he was born in 1810 [1]. A history of Java, Wyoming County, New York states that he came from Ireland in 1837 and located in Java in 1842 [2]. 

Her marker is inscribed:

wife of

DEC 5, 1880

A native of Ireland
Co. Louth, Parish of Donlear
May her soul rest in [?] linen

Margaret Ann Kerwin (Kirwan) was born in Dunleer, County Louth, Ireland sometime between 1807 and 1812. Like her husband, James Markey, I have not found her parents or her family records in Ireland. She appears to have Kerwin family in Java, Wyoming County, New York,  living near her in the late 1800s to early 1900s.

James Markey and Margaret Ann Kerwin were married in New York City, while James was a resident there, in 1834 [1].

James Markey and Margaret Ann Kerwin had five children including three daughters and two sons. Their daughters were Anne Markey (1838-1904), Catherine Markey (1840-1904), and Mary E Markey (1844-?). Their sons were Thomas Markey (1842-?), my 2nd great-grandfather, and John Markey (1872-1925).

The find-a-grave memorial states that they were the parents of James and William Markey. James probably refers to John.  I cannot find information for William Markey being their son. I am researching that James E Markey and William Markey were the children of Thomas Markey and his wife Anna Conroy. Both James and William are referenced as the sons of Thomas and Ann Markey.

Anne Markey married John Mooney (1836-?) and they had 7 children.  Catherine Mooney married John Gallagher and they had two children. An interesting piece of information about Anne and Catherine is that they both died within hours of one another, 06 Oct 1904, likely during an epidemic in Java, Wyoming County, New York. Mary Markey married Thomas Murray and they had 10 children.

Thomas Markey married Anna L. Conroy and they had three children, Rose I Markey, Augustus Markey and Mary Elizabeth Markey (my great-grandmother).  John Markey married Anna E Tuite in 1869 and they had four children. An additional interesting bit of information about their two sons is that their wives were both named Anna and they died within months of one another, Anna Conroy died in April of 1892 and Anna Tuite died in February of 1893. Anna Tuite was was forty-five when she died, Anna Conroy was forty-eight.  Both sons were oil workers in Pennsylvania in the late 1800s. Death sometimes brings families together, but in this case it appears it drove them apart. Thomas moved away after his wife and sisters died. John stayed in Java until his death in 1925.

After the death of her husband, Margaret Ann lived with her daughter Ann Markey Mooney and her family [3].

[1] Biographical review : this volume contains biographical sketches of the leading citizens of Livingston and Wyoming Counties, New York (Boston, BOSTON Biographical Review Publishing Company, 1895),,, this volume contains biographical sketches of the leading citizens of Livingston and Wyoming, New York.

[2] History of Wyoming County, N.Y. (36 Vesey Street, New York, United States, F.W. Beers & Co., 1880),,, with illustrations, biographical sketches, and portraits of some pioneers and prominent residents.. New York: F.W. Beers, 1880.

[3] 1880 United States Federal Census (Provo, UT, USA, Operations Inc, 2010), Year: 1880; Census Place: Java, Wyoming, New York; Roll: 948; Family History Film: 1254948; Page: 166A; Enumeration District: 205; Image: 0334.

[4] Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed 5 Oct 2015), photograph by Phyllis Meyer, memorial page for James Markey (1812-1873), Find A Grave Memorial no. 42306858, citing Saint Patricks Cemetery, Java Center, Wyoming County, New York, USA.

[5] Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed 5 Oct 2015), photograph by Phyllis Meyer, memorial page for Margaret Ann Kerwin Markey (1807-1880), Find A Grave Memorial no. 42306895, citing Saint Patricks Cemetery, Java Center, Wyoming County, New York, USA.



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