Hosted websites will become read-only beginning in early 2024. At that time, all logins will be disabled, but hosted sites will remain on RootsWeb as static content. Website owners wishing to maintain their sites must migrate to a different hosting provider before 2024 (More info)
James Fennessey (1852-1928), Union Village Shaker, Warren County, Ohio
This page is part of the Warren County Ohio GenWeb project
You are our [an error occurred while processing this directive] visitor since 5 November 2004 -- thanks for stopping by!
Obituaries With Warren County Connections

James Fennessey (1852-1928)

Image and transcription contributed by by Arne H Trelvik 5 November 2004

Obituary Collection at the Warren County Genealogical Society

Related Links:

Click on the thumbnail for larger image
(thumbnails are generally reduced to a 100 pixel width and images to a 600 pixel width.)


Was One Time Leader Of Prosperous Shaker Colony Near Hear


Funeral Services To Be Held This Afternoon At Two O'clock

James H. Fennessey, the last survivor of the once populous Shaker colony at Union Village, and its leader for a number of years, died Tuesday afternoon, following a short illness. He passed away at the home of Mrs. Waggoner on Main Street where he had resided during recent years.

Mr. Fennessey, who was in his 76th year, had apparently been in his usual good health until a few days ago when he complained of a slight illness. The end came while he was asleep and probably occurred at about noon Tuesday although it was not discovered until late in the afternoon.

Funeral services will be held at the Oswald Funeral Home this afternoon at 2 o'clock. Rev. J. H. Lamy will officiate assisted by Dr. J. R. King, of Westerville. Interment will be made on the Shaker lot in the Lebanon cemetery.

Mr. Fennessey was born in Cincinnati in 1852. Early in life he was left an orphan and lived for several years at a Cincinnati orphanage. While yet a child he lived for a while on a farm in Indian. Growing to manhood he was occupied for a number of years in the metal trade in Cincinnati.

In 1882 Mr. Fennessey sought shelter of the Shakers at Union Village and entered their home never to leave it until the dissolution of the local colony in 1920. He was a man of keen intellect, excellent business judgment and of a gentle and friendly disposition.

At the time of Mr. Fennessey's affiliation with the Shakers the colony was a prosperous community of several hundred members cultivating one of the largest and most progressive farms in this section. Through mismanagement the colony gradually fell into debt until early in the present century a debt aggregating $160,000 faced the colony. At this time Mr. Fennessey was appointed trustee and under his leadership financial difficulties were overcome and prosperity once again returned to the Shakers.

The colony gradually decreased in numbers until it was necessary for the first time in history to hire outside help on the farm. No new blood was added and finally in 1912 the property was sold to the United Brethren church. That organization now uses the 4500 acre tract as a children's home.

The local Shaker colony disbanded in 1920 when but five members remained. Three of these went to the Shaker settlement at East Canterbury, N. H., George Baxter went south and Mr. Fennessey remained in Ohio. For a short while he lived in Lebanon then returned to Union Village where he lived until 1926 when he again returned.

FOOTNOTES: [a place to add additional information that you might want to submit]


NOTICE: All documents and electronic images placed on the Warren County OHGenWeb site remain the property of the contributors, who retain publication rights in accordance with US Copyright Laws and Regulations. These documents may be used by anyone for their personal research. Persons or organizations desiring to use this material, must obtain the written consent of the submitter, or their legal representative, and contact the listed Warren County OHGenWeb coordinator with proof of this consent.

This page created 5 November 2004 and last updated 4 February, 2005
© 2004-2005 Arne H Trelvik  All rights reserved