Four generations of RICHARDSONs 1917

Four generations of RICHARDSONs 1917
William Richardson, Alice Josephine Richardson Dakin, Robert Worthington Richardson, Harry Bogart Richardson

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

A Genealogy Angel! a RAOGK* in action!

In a blog post on A Family Legend and The Rest of the Story
I mentioned:

"When I asked my mother about her Richardson family, she said they came from Belfast Northern Ireland to Canada.  After she died I found her 8th grade autobiography where she said 'the Richardsons were great landholders in the north of Ireland.  After awhile they came to Canada and settled in Quebec.'"

In that blog post I mentioned that:
I found the wedding of Robert Richardson and Sarah Allen, the parents of William Richardson in the Anglican Cathedral Holy Trinity Church in Québec on 25 May 1832.  William was born on 5 November 1835 in Québec City.  Robert was a cordwainer.  Sarah had four children before she died 28 January 1843, in Québec City.  Robert remarried, this time to Harriet Isabella Birch on 20 September 1843.  They had nine children.  Not all of his 13 children made it to adulthood.  In the 1851 and 1871 censuses, Robert says he was born in 1810 in Ireland.

I have not verified the "great landholders" or the "Northern Ireland." Robert did work as a cordwainer in Québec, he sounds like someone who is working for a living rather than managing an estate of some kind in Québec.  I have not found any passenger records bringing Robert to Québec -- so I don't know if he came as a young adult or as a child.  I haven't found any potential Richardson parents for him in Québec.  I have noticed there are many Richardsons in Northern Ireland, many of them named William Richardson and some own land.  Robert's first son was named William.  So, maybe that part of the story is true.  That is left to be investigated further.

This has been a challenge without much success for a number of years.

Then out of the blue, a genealogy angel appeared unexpectedly.  On 28 January, I received an message on's Message Board.

From: Maria XXXX
Subject:  Hi from Ireland
My name is Maria XXXX and I live in Dublin.  I am currently
researching old newspapers in the hope of gathering information for
the family trees of several friends I am currently trying to help.  If I
happen across any that might be of interest to another family tree
then I try, where possible to track down that tree on ancestry so as 
to match them. ....

I do not know Maria, never heard of her, she's not related to me, she is searching for her friends and then doing this wonderful random act of kindness "If I
happen across any that might be of interest to another family tree
then I try, where possible to track down that tree on ancestry so as 
to match them."
So Maria is helping her friends AND the owners of their trees when she finds relevant obituaries.
Such a surprise.

So continuing with Maria's message:
... I believe the following death notice that appeared in 
The Montreal Daily Witness on the 26th Jan in 1875 belongs on
your Richardson Family Tree: "RICHARDSON -- In this city, on the
morning of the 26th January, Mr. Robert Richardson, aged 66 years,
a native of Cork, Ireland, and for many years a resident of Quebec. ...

Not exactly Belfast or Northern Ireland, But a place to start looking.
Maybe his family came from Northern Ireland Richardsons and moved to Cork and then he moved to Québec as a young man (before he married in 1832 and after he was born in 1810).
This opens up possibilities for searching.

The funeral will take place from his late residence of No 42 St.
Charles Barromee street, on Thursday, the 28th at 2.30 o'clock p.m.
thence to Mount Royal Cemetery.  Relatives, friends and
acquaintances are respectfully invited to attend without further
notice.  Quebec papers please copy."  I hope this helps with your
research.  Slan, Maria"

I followed Robert Richardson in the church records in Québec City for his two marriages and the births of his 13 children, and the deaths of a few of them.  I followed him in the local directories as a shoemaker, until he wasn't there any longer.  Then I found him and his wife Harriet Isabella Birch living with one of their children in Montréal and did have his death and burial there in 1875 -- matching exactly the information here.

But, I did not have his final address in Montréal, the fact that he told people that he came from Cork.
So, this was a wonderful gift from Maria in Dublin!

The other gift was Maria also took the time to transcribe a document from the Montreal Daily Witness (26 January 1875, page 3) that was not easy to read (she generously shared the link too in another message):

Thank you Maria from Dublin, you are a wonderful genealogical angel to be finding and sharing these obituaries with unsuspecting folks around the world who need your help!

*RAOGK = a "Random Act of Genealogical Kindness" -- just not from that very special website which was recently revived after the death of it's original site manager.

The link to this page is
©2015, Erica Dakin Voolich

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