Genealogy research by Mark Humphrys,

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My ancestors - O'Mara - Contents

Andrew O'Mara

Andrew O'Mara,
born 1817, Co.Tipperary.
He adopted the spelling "O'Mara" (as did his brother James' branch). Spelt "Andrew O'Mara" in all of his letters.

Possible British Army service:
He was supposed to have been a member of the Queen's Life Guard in London (Queen's Guard, a "lifeguardsman", guard of the Royal residences). Was in Queen Victoria's bodyguard.
He was said to have fallen out with his brother James (an active Home Ruler) over Irish politics.
But this does not seem to fit Andrew, who lived Limerick and then went to North America. Perhaps it was another brother?

He mar 3 Feb 1837 [St.John's, Limerick] to Catherine McManus [born 1818, Co.Tipperary, think NOT McMannus].
Children grew up Mungret St, Limerick (near his brother James), where they knew the Pigotts.
"Andrew O'Mara" is listed in [Griffiths Valuation, 1850] as leasing a number of properties:

Emigrates to America, 1868:
He went to America 1868, age 51. His son Martin seems to have gone out to America earlier.
He seems to have had trouble with drink and money.
He wrote 19 Aug 1868 to his nephew Stephen O'Mara from 404 "Columba St", New York (must be Columbia St, see map). He says he does not write to Stephen's father: "I could not have the assurance of writing to him after what he suffered by me but he will be paid as sure as God is in the Heavens, and every one else if God spares me".
His son Martin writes (in Nov 1868) of lending his father money when he first arrived in America: "when he came to this country first and wrote me for money (wild as I was counted to be) I could not forget the first laws of nature - lent him in reply $100 cash and would perhaps lend him more but it would do him no good as I could hear from other people ... I don't know what to say of father, I don't know as if he'll ever mend."

Moves to Canada:
Sometime 1868-71 he moved from New York to Canada.
Settled at 188 Dundas St, London, Ontario (see map).
He wrote in 1871 to "My Dear Brother" from 188 Dundas St, London, Ontario. He says he has written to Stephen and it is clear he is writing to his brother James. He says he found it hard to write: "I could not think of doing so after what I done to you". He wants to make amends to "you and every one else that I owe one cent to".
His son John writes (c.1875) that his father is off the drink. He reads out a letter from Stephen to his father: "when I came to the part that said his brother was happy that he was a temperance man ... he actually cried and renewed his pledge for life which I do believe he will firmly keep poor man ... he is happier now than ever he was. I think after a few years he will go home and pay off his debts".
He wrote to Stephen from London, Ontario, 1876.
He died London, Ontario, 14 Jun 1878, age 61 yrs.
Stephen visited London, Ontario, on his trip to North America in 1888.
Catherine died London, Ontario, Aug 16, 1891, age 73 yrs.
Andrew and Catherine had issue:

  1. Margret O'Mara,
    "Margret" and "Maggie" in family records, and 1881 census,
    "Margaret" in other official records,
    born Dec 24, 1841 in Co.Tipperary.

  2. Martin J. O'Mara (or O'Meara), born est c.1845,
    grew up in Limerick,
    talks about his old neighbours in Mungret St, Limerick,
    went to America,
    looks like spelt "O'Mara" in letter of perhaps c.1868,
    wrote to his "cousin" Stephen O'Mara from Plum Creek, Nebraska, 28 Nov 1868,
    left Nebraska in Aug 1869,
    then "came back to Canada on a visit to see the old folks",
    then went to New Mexico,
    then lived Denver, Colorado, 1870-71, working for Kansas Pacific Railway as "Fuel Agent",
    wrote to his "cousin" Stephen, 6 Mar 1872, while on a visit to his family at 188 Dundas St, London, Ontario,
    refers to Ellen as his "cousin" too, but it is clear from the letter he is a first cousin of Stephen,
    plans to return to US and continue travels, "I'm of a roving disposition ... not been married yet - nor don't intend to",
    spelt "O'Meara" in 1872 letter,
    he is "M.J. O'Mara" (thus spelt) who wrote to Ellen while on another visit to his family in London, Ontario, 3 June 1875,
    he is apparently in the bacon business in the US as at 1875.

  3. John O'Mara,
    described in letter of 1868 as "Cashier" in a "Packing House",
    mar pre-1871 to ----,
    described in letter of 1872 as "Foreman of a Packing House" in Canada (think in or near London, Ontario),
    wrote to Stephen O'Mara c.1875, signed "John M. O'Mara" or "John Mc O'Mara", he is involved in bacon business in Canada,
    he says he has "just got a subpoena to attend a case of considerable importance in Toronto".

  4. Mike O'Mara,
    Michael J. O'Mara,
    described in letter of 1868 as working in "a commercial store",
    described in letter of 1872 as then in St.Louis, Missouri, working for Ohio and Mississippi Railway,
    still in St.Louis as at letter of c.1875.

  5. Caty O'Mara, Cate, Kate,
    struck by a paralytic stroke c.1875,
    died 1875.

  6. Andrew O'Mara.

  7. At least 1 other child, O'Mara.

Michael J. O'Mara.
"M.J. O'M" on back, but someone has written "Cousin Michael" (i.e. not Martin J. O'Mara).
See full size.

Looks like the same person (Michael J. O'Mara).
See larger and full size. See other copy.
From [P40/909]. Used with permission of [UL Archives].

One of the Canadian branch.
Taken in London, Ontario.
Think this might be the picture of Martin J. O'Mara he says is enclosed with his letter of 1872.
See larger and full size.

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