The Patrick O'Day and Margaret (Marguerite) Farrington Family of South Bend, St Joseph County, Indiana: An Analysis of their Irish Origins and journey to South Bend, Indiana in Census, Church and Other Records

Patrick O'Dea (O'Day) and Margaret (Marguerite) Farrington (Funnington?) both hailed from Ireland and arrived in the United States around 1864 according to the 1900 and 1920 South Bend Census. Patrick appears to have naturalized as well. The earliest evidence I have for them is the August 25, 1864 marriage record at Sacred Heart Church, Notre Dame. The Indiana Marriage collection refers to her as Margaret Funnington and spells his name as O'Day. The 1870 South Bend Census for wards 2 and 3 finds Patrick employed as a Laborer;they have children Ann 4, Mary 1, Eliza 8 and Earl William, Laborer 24? lives with them. By 1880, they are living in District 163 on Division Street and Patrick is employed at a Plow Works. Children Annie (14), Elizabeth (12), Mary (10) and Francis (1) were all born in Indiana. Of interest are the O'Day step children living with John and Catherine Cummins on this census page as well. When the 1900 Census is conducted, they are living on South Scott Street of District 0124. Patrick, born May 1845 in Ireland (as were his parents) is employed as a Fireman, wife Margaret born June 1846 was born in Ireland as were her parents. They had been married 35 years with 12 children, 5 living. Daughter Mamie (Dressmaker) born May 1875, Frank (Salesman, born March 1879) and Thomas (in school, whose birth appears to read June 1837?) were all born in Indiana. They remain on South Scott Street in both the 1910 and 1920 South Bend Census. In 1910, Patrick was a Fireman in a Factory, they had been married for 40 years with 7 children, 3 living and daughter Mamie (29, single, Dressmaker) was living with them. The 1920 Census was conducted on January 8, 1920. Patrick was listed as a Watchman for the Railroad. Daughter Mamie (29, single) still lives with he and his wife. Patrick appears to die just 2 weeks later on January 22, 1920 at the age of 74 according to the "Indiana Deaths" compilation.

There is another O'Day family residing in South Bend during the same time period who may or may not be related to Patrick: John O'Day and Margaret Maughan. I think there may a good chance that these families may have attended St Patrick's Church in South Bend as I have not been able to find them in the St Joseph Church and Sacred Heart Church records other than the marriage record for Patrick.

Special Note: There is a list of lot owners in the Cedar Grove Cemetery Microfilm 1637531 item 3 that indicates that the "O'Dea family" owns lot numbers 177 in Section B and lot 307. I'm not certain that this lot is tied to this family but it would be worth pursuing to check it out!

The objective of this compilation is to try to establish the earliest possible evidence of this family in the United States through all available resources.

This will most definitely be a work in progress and all findings I speculate on would have to be proven for accuracy with Ireland and U.S. marriage records, church baptismal records and death records among other genealogical resources. Please use this information with that caveat in mind so that nothing is assumed and no stones are left unturned to assure it's your family and the connection is accurate. Please contact me if you feel that you are descended from this family or another South Bend, Indiana Irish Family so that we can share information, see if there were common migration trails followed and delve further back into their origins in Ireland!

The following is a brief summary of what I have discovered about their children thus far:

  1. Mamie O'Day born May 1875 in Indiana was still listed as 40 and single, living with her parents in the 1920 South Bend, Indiana Census.
  2. Frank O'Day born March 1879 in Indiana. Frank was a Clerk for Adler Brothers in 1904 when the South Bend City Directory was compiled and he still lived at home.
  3. Thomas J O'Dea born January 12, 1887 in South Bend, Indiana, appears to have married Mary E Holmes on December 12, 1909 in Berrien County, Michigan. His father was listed as Patrick and Mother's maiden name was Farrington. His wife Mary was born in Indiana in 1890, the daughter of Oscar Holmes and Rebecca Zeigler. They were living in South Bend, Ward 1, District 163 when the 1910 Census was taken. Tom and Mamie had been married one year and were living with her mother Rebecca Holmes. According to Thomas' WWI draft card in June 1917, they were residents of 800 So Clinton Street in South Bend and he was employed at Standard Oil Company. In 1920, Thomas J O'Dea (Manager Oil Company) and his wife May (helper in the oil Company Office) were living in Fort Wayne, Indiana, District 0056, Ward 6 and they had a son William age 5 who was born in Indiana. According to his WWII draft card, from Allen County, Indiana, Thomas was 55, born January 12, 1887 in South Bend, Indiana and his nearest relative was Mrs Mamie O'Day on 4615 Indiana Avenue in Fort Wayne, Indiana.