James and Mary (Daniel Stephens parents), we know very little about them. Mary was a native irish speaker from east Cork. Our records state she was 4 years older (She was from 1840 and James from 1844). Our records also say that James died in 1909 and Mary in 1924. In the census records of their son Christophers we see that his mother then aged 72 also lived with him. I fear that for all Christophers kindness, he was also a man who did not know how to say no. Because our original records state that Mary was a very strong willed woman.
But we know that James and Mary had other children and we have no contact whatsoever with their descendants. So I was looking around at the census records and I made a really great discovery. In our records, we record James and Mary’s daughter Margaret who married a man called John Murphy. I have no idea what happened to John Murphy, but they left quite a few children behind and it was told that they were brought up by James and Mary. Not so! Their son Christopher brought up six of them (James, Julia, Mary, Christina and Elizabeth (Lizzie)) and another nephew “James Crowley” and two boarders and his wife and children (15 residents in total)! Also, his sister Mary who was 3 years younger than Christopher lived with them. We have no records of a younger sister Mary and I wonder if she was not 10-12 years older than recorded on the census records, maybe she was the mother of the Murphy children? Hannah Murphy lived with her grandparents when in 1901 but was living elsewhere by 1911.
Christopher who was only 35 at the time and his wife Margaret were hero’s in my book (check out the census records here). Because we have found this we can update the first generation family tree to be more accurate and I have learned just how kind Christopher and his wife Margaret were.
This story is still developing. We have been very lucky and are in contact with a granddaughter of Lizzie.