ABIGAIL BURGESS (aka Abby, Abinea and Albinea) - THE
Below are fragments of Abigail's story. She migrated
from her home in County Cork, Ireland to the US in the late 19th
Century. The history of the emigration from Cobh in Cork has been
described in a website
dedicated to Cobh's heritage.
Abby was born in 1868 in Aghada, County Cork,
Ireland to John Joseph Burgess (abt 1840-1893) and Abigail Bride
(abt 1840-1910). She was christened in the same town on the 9
July 1868 and her godparents were Richard Cotter and Margaret
Holland. She is the 6th child of John
Joseph Burgess and Abigail Bride. Her sister Mary Agnes Burgess
migrated to Australia and married Daniel Daly.
A letter from the local parish priest says that
Abigail Burgess married Peter Coyle. The date and place
of marriage is not stated. An www.ancestry.com search shows that
they were married on 17 December 1891 at St John the Baptist Church
in Jersey City, Hudson, New Jersey in the US.
The 1900 Census for New Jersey West Side
(Pavonia and Giles Avenues) reports that Peter Coyle is the head
of the household. Peter who also was born in Ireland August 1862
is now aged 37 and he and Abby have been married 8 years. Peter's
parents too are Irish and they arrived in America in 1884. In
all Peter has lived 16 years America and is renting his home.
According to the same Census Abigail Coyle as
she is now known (nee Burgess) was born in Ireland in May in 1874
and she is aged 26 years. We note discrepancies in Abby's age
in various documents including church records and census reports
for different years - she may have "taken" a few years for perhaps
migration, work or marriage. According to this census, Abby arrived
in America in 1890 so she has been there for about 10 years; she
has given birth to 6 children of whom 5 are still living. They
- Mamie, a daughter was born December 1892 in Jersey City, Hudson,
NJ. Mamie attends school.
- Cornelius a son was born 31 July 1894.
- Peter a son born January 1897.
- Joseph a son born December 1897.
- Albinia, a daughter born December 1899 at Gates Avenue New
Jersey - she is aged 5 months.
- below you can refer to the map and the notes on the geography
of the Cork area. Source
is the primary city in the county of the same name locate
on the south coast of Ireland. Cobh (called Queenstown
in the 19th century after Queen Victoria) is the seaport
about 22 kilometers south east of the city. Aghada is on
the eastern side of the harbour opposite Cobh. They are
about 27 kilometers distant by land route. Rostellan, mentioned
below, is a small town enroute to Aghada and only about
3 kilometers from Aghada. It was in Aghada where
John Joseph, Albinia and Anna stayed with the Burgess family
for some years before returning to America.
In late 1902 or early 1903 Abby's husband Peter
died and she decides that she and the children should return home
to Ireland to the Burgess family. They traveled on the SS Cyrmic
which left New York in June 1903. The ship is bound for Liverpool
in England via Queenstown, County Cork. Nowadays Queenstown is
known by its original name of Cobh and is a seaport town on the
Irish south coast.
It is reported in the passenger list that among
the passengers on board are: Mrs. A. Coyle age 28 and her six
children Mary age 10, Cornelius age 8, Peter age 7, John age 5,
Albinia age 2 and Anna age 1 who was born after the Census.
Note the changes to the names. Mamie is now Mary
and Joseph (born John Joseph) is now John
Upon return to Cork, Cornelius and Peter are
placed in a Sisters of Mercy Orphanage. Upon reaching their teens,
the boys returned to New Jersey. There is more about this below.
Abby's mother, Abigail Burgess (nee Bride) also mentions it in
to her daughter-in-law Sarah Lovegrove in Australia.
In 1904 Abby returns to the US aboard the SS
Aurania which sailed from Queenstown on 10 August and arrived
in New York on 18 August 1904.
The US immigration report notes that on board
is Albinia Coyle (nee Burgess) Note the age discrepancy again
as she is described as Irish aged 28 years, female, single, servant,
can read and write and traveling from Rostellan (a village near
Aghada) to New Jersey. The passage was paid for by herself and
she has 10 pounds in her pocket. It is also reported that she
has been in America before in 1904 and that she was going to live
with her sister Mrs H. Mahony c/- 381 Hoboken Avenue New Jersey.
This would be Mary Hannah Francis Burgess, who was born October
1864 and had migrated earlier to the US.
Abby has remarried by about 1905 to Michael
Murphy aged 48 years as reported in the 1910 Census for New
Jersey. It is his second marriage too. Michael is a brakeman
and works for the railroad company. Michael arrived in America
The 1910 Census also reports that Albinia says
she is 34 (which is another age discrepancy) has had 7 children,
6 of whom are still alive.
The Census also mentions Mary Coyle, a
stepdaughter to Michael Murphy who is 17 years old and single.
Mary is an operator in a biscuit company. This girl is likely
to be Abby's daughter Mamie Coyle, who is mentioned above in the
1900 Census. Mamie is an old form of the name Mary.
THE CHILDREN OF ABIGAIL BURGESS and PETER COYLE
CORNELIUS (born 31 July 1894). By the
time he was 16 Cornelius has left the orphanage and decides to
return to the US. On 29 July 1910 he departs Queenstown (present
day Cobh) Ireland on the SS Teutonic a Cunard liner bound for
New York. Cornelius is listed as being 16 years of age and his
calling is a baker.
According to the 1917-18 Registration Card
Cornelius is a long shoreman at Pier 60, New York New York
City and his mother, Abigail is listed as a dependent. He is single,
tall with blue eyes and brown hair. In the 1920 Census for
New York County and State Cornelius is living with his sister
Mary and her husband Maurice McNamara. He is now 23 years
old and still single and working as a long shoreman but now at
the White Star Company. In a later Census for New York County
and City (1930) Cornelius is recorded as boarder aged 34 years,
single and a labourer for steamships.
PETER COYLE (born January 1897) Peter too returns to the
US and travels with his brother Cornelius on the SS Teutonic.
He is only 13 years old although the passenger list shows his
age as 15. This may have been a deliberate discrepancy to enable
him to travel without an adult. He is listed as a carpenter.
JOHN JOSEPH COYLE born on 07 Dec 1870, Jersey City, Hudson,
New Jersey. We have no other details.
ALBINIA COYLE born 11 Dec 1899 at Gates
Avenue, Jersey City, Hudson, New Jersey.
Albina was not placed in the orphanage upon her mother's return
to Cork from New York in June 1903 but lived with her mother and
grandmother Abigail Burgess (nee Bride). Her mother returns to
the US in 1904 and her child Albinia remains in Ireland in the
care of her grandmother.
In the 1911 Irish Census Albinia is listed
as a niece to the head of the household, Thomas V Burgess. Albinia
now aged 11, can read write and is a scholar and a Roman Catholic.
It also records that she was born in the United States.
30 December 1921 Albinia leaves Queenstown and arrives in New
York 8th January aboard the SS Celtic. She gives her home address
as care of her brother Mr. C.F. Coyle of 505 West 22nd. Street
New York. This is Cornelius. In the shipping book it says she
is to be discharged to her brother on the Pier. Albinia is now
21 years old.
In 1923 Albinia was issued with a passport to
return to Ireland. It is recorded that she is working as a packer.
She is booked to travel on the SS Adriatic sailing to Queenstown
on 12th October and arriving New York 19th October 1924. In the
same year she had booked to return to the United States but this
ANGELINA COYLE, known as Anna, was born 15th August 1902
at Giles Avenue, Jersey City.
In 1903 after the death of her father Peter Coyle
she travelled with her mother Abinea on the SS Cymric back to
Queenstown, County Cork, Ireland. Anna was a small child not 1
year of age when they arrived in Cork on June 1903.
When Angelina's mother returned to New Jersey
in 1904 and she remained in Agahada with her grandmother Abigail
Bride (nee Burgess) together with her brother John Joseph and
sister Albinia) . In one of Abigail Bride's letters to her daughter-in-law
Sarah Burgess (nee Lovegrove) she tells Sarah how the baby is
now walking . This would have been Anna.
Angelina is counted in the 1911 Census for Ireland,
Lower Aghada and is listed as being born United States, age 9
years, a scholar, Roman Catholic and niece to the head of the
household (Thomas V Burgess) and she can read and write.
In 1921 Angelina and her sister Albinia left
Queenstown for New York sailing on the 30th December 1920
on the SS Celtic. They arrived in New York on the 8th. January
1921. Like her sister Anna is listed as to be discharged to her
brother on the Pier. It says that they are going to their brother
Mr C F Coyle at 505 West 22nd St New York. At this time Angelina
is 18 years old. In 1923 Angelina and Albinia returned to Ireland
on the SS Adriatic, a White Star Line ship to Liverpool via Queenstown
Ireland. Angelina is now 21 years old. The Adriatic arrived Liverpool
on the 1 October 1823.
MAMIE COYLE- was born December 1892, New
Jersey She is also known as Mary. After her father passed away
Mamie went to Ireland with the family where she was placed in
a Sisters of Mercy orphanage in Cork. They traveled on the ship
SS Cymric which left New York for Queenstown and Liverpool in
June 1903. Mamie is listed as being 10 years
On 5 September 1907 Mamie left Ireland on the
SS Celtic for America. She is listed as being 15 years old and
a citizen of USA She was discharged on the pier. Mary arrived
back in the USA on 14 September 1907 and rejoined her mother who
has since remarried.
In the US Federal Census 1910. Manhattan
Ward 16, New York Mamie is recorded as Mary Coyle, Stepdaughter,
age 17 years and working as an operator in a biscuit company.
She is living with her mother Albinia and stepfather Michael Murphy.
In the 1920 Census Mary is listed as being married to
Maurice McNamara. She and Maurice have a daughter Albinia
who is 3 nearly four years old. They are living in New York. At
this time Mary has two of her brothers living with them Cornelius
and Peter Coyle. They work with Maurice McNamara. In the 1930
Census Mamie and Maurice McNamara are living back in Hudson
New Jersey and with them is Mamie's brother Peter and her cousin
MAURICE FRANCIS McNAMARA was born on 11 Oct 1888 in NEW
YORK CITY NEW YORK. In the Census 1920 County of New York , Manhattan
Assembly District 3, New York.
- Maurice , head, 31 years, married, born New York , parents
both born Ireland, Long shoreman, works for White Star Line.
The home they live in is rented.
- Mary, wife,25 years, married, born New Jersey, parents both
- Alvinia ( Albinia) 3 and 4/12 years born 1917 in New York.
- Cornelius Coyle age 23 years , single, born New Jersey, longshoreman,
White Star Line.
- Peter Coyle age 21, single born New Jersey, longshoreman,
White Star line.
Census for 1930 State New Jersey - County Bergen. Those
present that night were -
- Maurice McNamara, age 41 years, age at marriage 26 years,
head of house, married 15 years, born New York and works on
- Mary, wife, age 37 years, age at marriage 22 years, born New
- Albinia, daughter, age 13 years, single, born New York.
- Peter Coyle , brother in law, 34 years, single, born New Jersey,work
it looks like docks.
- Patrick Coyle, cousin, 41 years, single, he and his parents
were all born New Jersey.
The Registration card for World War II
records Maurice Francis McNamara living at 159 Laidlaw Ave Jersey
City Hudson New Jersey. He is aged 53, born 11 October 1888 in
New York. He does not have a telephone. His wife Mary McNarmara
is at the same address. Maurice works for the White Star Line,
Pier 61 North River, New York.
ALBINIA McNAMARA was born in 1917 in NEW YORK is a child
of MAURICE FRANCIS McNAMARA and MAMIE COYLE married.
Copyright material is acknowledged
and is used for research and study purposes only to the extent permitted
by law and may not distributed nor commercially exploited without
. Migrant ships and passenger list - www.ellisisland.org
. Map -
www.cork-guide.ie/east_cork (some towns are highlighted for
. Queenstown Harbour - www.maggieblanck.com