Genealogy research by Mark Humphrys.
P.A. left Co.Cork, never went back.
Went to America. He arrived in America in 1889 [Shearer, 2017].
He became a journalist.
[Shearer, 2017] says he wrote for the Boston Post and became the paper's western correspondent, based in Tacoma, Washington.
Profile thought he wrote for the New York Sun and the Boston Globe as a western correspondent.
Later in 1921 census he is living in Canada and it says he arrived in Canada in 1890. But it does seem he lived in USA at that time.
He returned to Ireland to marry in 1892. He is listed on mar cert as "gentleman", then living Tacoma, Washington.
mar 1892 to Lizzie Flanagan [Elizabeth, born 5 July 1868].
His business throughout his career was in North America. But he never permanently left Ireland. They lived periodically in Dublin, but travelled all over the world. Children would be put in school or convent while parents were abroad.
Their dau was born in 1894 in Ireland, at Lizzie's father's house, Portmahon House, Dublin.
Copper mining in Montana:
He got involved in the massively expanding copper mining business in
He was said to be one of the original investors in the Anaconda Copper Mining Company, based in Butte, Montana. Not sure if that is true, since he was associated with Anaconda's great competitor F. Augustus Heinze. The competition for mining was called the War of the Copper Kings.
In any case, P.A. made a lot of money in copper mining and investing.
Associate of F. Augustus Heinze:
By 1895 he became an associate of F. Augustus Heinze, one of the "Copper Kings", who owned mines in Butte, Montana.
Profile says he was "confidant of and publicity man for F. Augustus Heinze, the brilliant mining engineer, surveyor, financier and operator".
He was involved in mining in Spokane, Washington. Child born in Spokane 1898.
He became editor of Heinze's paper The Reveille (also called The Butte Reveille). This was a newspaper established by F. Augustus Heinze and published in Butte from 1898 until 1909. Heinze used the newspaper to influence public opinion, promote his business interests and promote his political interests. 1902 newspaper describes The Reveille as "Heinze's Scurrillous Campaign Sheet".
P.A. wrote an 1899 book about the competition for copper mining in Butte. His book takes Heinze's side and is scathing about the rival "Copper Kings" Marcus Daly and William A. Clark. So much so that the book was stopped from being sold in Butte.
Later in 1921 census they are living in Canada and it says Lizzie arrived in Canada in 1901. But they are living in USA at that time.
Child born in Butte 1901.
The Reveille ran a controversial editorial cartoon attacking Senator William A. Clark in 1902.
As a result of this, O'Farrell and others were arrested in Oct 1902 on an obscenity charge. It is unclear how this case ended.
Heinze moved to New York in 1907, where he lost much of his fortune in the Panic of Oct 1907, and fell into legal problems.
Profile says P.A. followed Heinze to New York "and was with him when he went under".
Canadian Pacific Railway:
He became publicity agent for the Canadian Pacific Railway (Canada's first trans-continental railway, built 1881-1885).
He became an associate of Thomas Shaughnessy, 1st Baron Shaughnessy (President of the Canadian Pacific Railway 1899 to 1918). Obituary says P.A. played a prominent part in the development of the Canadian Pacific Railway.
They moved to Canada.
Lizzie's family back in Ireland were involved with Irish politics (Irish Parliamentary Party). Her brother-in-law from 1919 was W.T. Cosgrave.
Obituary says P.A. was a friend of T. P. O'Connor and John Dillon and John McCormack and Senator George Crosbie and Brother Patrick Jerome Hennessy and Prof. William Magennis.
They lived in Vancouver, Canada.
[Shearer, 2017] says they lived at the Hotel Vancouver, downtown Vancouver, "on and off from 1920 through 1924".
They are listed in 1921 census as guests at the Hotel Vancouver. From here. All Catholic. He is a journalist.
Lizzie's brother-in-law W.T. Cosgrave was the first prime minister of Ireland, in 1922-1932.
P.A. was on the Reception Committee that met W.T. Cosgrave
on his official visit to the US and Canada in Jan 1928.
It was the first overseas visit by an Irish Prime Minister.
He was with W.T. and his party when their train had an accident in Canada
in which the engine driver was killed.
See letter of 17 Dec 1928 from W.T. sent to Lizzie at Hotel Vancouver, Vancouver.
P.A. wrote articles about metals and economics.
[Shearer, 2017] says he lost much of his fortune in the 1929 stock market crash.
Lizzie's father died 1931.
They came back to Ireland c.1931.
At death he is listed as a journalist, formerly of Vancouver.
P.A. dies in Dublin, 1933:
He died at his wife's family home, Portmahon House, Dublin, 14 Dec 1933, age 78 yrs [GROI].
See death cert from here.
See death notice in Irish Independent, Friday, December 15, 1933.
Funeral 16 Dec 1933. He was bur Glasnevin Cemetery.
At funeral were W.T. Cosgrave and Dick Mulcahy and John A. Costello and Prof. William Magennis.
See funeral report in Irish Independent, December 18, 1933.
Lizzie lived on for many years.
She died c.1962/63, age c.94/95 yrs.
She might be Elizabeth O'Farrell who died 6 Jan 1957, Vancouver, age 86 (born 1871). See record.
P.A. and Lizzie had issue:
"Mrs. P.A. O'Farrell" (sister-in-law of W.T. Cosgrave) is listed prominently in a report of the massive funeral of Michael Collins in Dublin on 28 Aug 1922.
From Cork Examiner, 29 Aug 1922. Also here.
Also listed here is her sister Mrs. Cosgrave.
Also Mrs. Rynne of Limerick and her father Stephen O'Mara.
Obituary of P.A. O'Farrell.
Irish Independent, Saturday, December 16, 1933.
P.A. O'Farrell grave.
He and other O'Farrell family are buried in the Flanagan grave (his wife's family) in Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin.
Please donate to support this site.
I have spent a great deal of time and money on this research.
Research involves travel and many expenses.
Some research "things to do"
are not done for years, because I do not have the money to do them.
Please Donate Here to support the ongoing research and to keep this website free.