Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Winter Mornings on Flynn's Hill

It wasn't very often that we traveled to Flynn's Hill in the winter, because of the very snowy winters Newfoundland is known for.  But the few times we did, I remember clearly.

Early in the morning, while we were snug in bed under the comforters and quilts, Nanny would make her way down the wooden stairs quietly so not to wake us.  She would start the wood burning stove, as this was the only source of heat for their home.  Slowly the heat rose to the bedrooms upstairs through the iron grate covering the opening in the floor.

We could hear Nanny, now in the kitchen starting breakfast, setting the table and putting the kettle on the stove for morning tea.  The smell of bacon or sausage found it's way up the stairs, luring us out of bed.

The kitchen in my grandparents house was the only room that was fully heated and like most homes was the central meeting place for all things important.  We would scurry down the stairs to the kitchen for breakfast and tea.  I suppose, we did this just as my mother and her siblings had done, and just as my grandfather and his siblings had done as well.

I never thought of that before.

This is a photo of my grandparents house taken from a different angle then what we are use to seeing. The window on the lower level of the house is the kitchen window, that looked out towards the barn. Looking at the type of fence, and it's placement, I would guess this is an earlier photo.

My grandfather states in the letter he wrote "History of the Estate" that he built this house in 1920, and the barn was built a few years later.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

There once was.........

Atlantic Puffin

There once was a Puffin, just the shape of a muffin, who lived on an island in the bright blue Sea!                                                                                                
He ate little fishes, that were most delicious,and he had them for Supper and he had them for Tea!                 

 by Florence Page Jacques        

I would sing this little song to the students who attended my preschool years ago.  I would show them Newfoundland on the World Map.

The Atlantic Puffin is the Provincal Bird for the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador.  It is a seabird species of the auk family. The Atlantic Puffin is a pelagic bird that feeds primarily by diving for fish, but also eats other sea creatures, such as squid and crustaceans.  It is the only Puffin species which is found in the Atlantic ocean. (1)

(1) Atlantic Puffin, Wikipedia - The Free Encyclopedia

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Remarkable Resemblances

Philip Martin Flynn
Stephen Flynn Jr
Patrick Flynn

Jeremy E Dollen
Stephen A Dollen
Brian A. Clark

This posting speaks for itself, genetics fascinate me!  Especially Uncle Martin and Jeremy, three generations difference and look at the similarities.

For those of you who do not know the line, it would be,

 Stephen Flynn Jr, Mary Flynn Dollen, Stephen A Dollen and then Jeremy E Dollen

Stephen Flynn Jr. Mary Flynn Dollen, Elaine Dollen Clark and then Brian A Clark

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

One Mystery Solved

I found this photo with no name on the back, it was set aside with the hopes of one day finding out who it was.  Most of the older photos probably are of family members, with this in mind I showed the photo to Uncle Ray when he was here last March.  Instantly he said, "That is Aunt Esther".

One more mystery solved. My mom spoke of Aunt Esther often, stating she came to visit them on Flynn's Hill with her children.  She is the last sibling of my grandfather Stephen Jr.,that I have not mentioned. She was the fourth child of Stephen Flynn Sr and Mary Ann Tubrett.

Esther Flynn was born Apr 21st 1889.  She is six years older than my grandfather Stephen. Esther married George Lahey of Bell Island, they had 10 children.  Mary 1909, Stephen 1915, Bernard 1917, Elizabeth 1918, Ellen 1920, Susan 1924, Michael 1926, Ada 1928, Elsie 1930 and Georgina 1934. Esther and George are buried in the Roman Catholic Cemetery Bell Island. Esther died in 1962 at the age of 73 years.

 Note: If you look back at the entry titled "Great Aunts"  The woman standing Aunt Mary Ellen?, looks very similar to Aunt Esther. (Well, I think so)

P.S Uncle Ray is not sure of the young girl standing next to Aunt Esther, possible one of her daughters.

Monday, December 12, 2011

A Christmas Card

Uncle Martin
taken July 31, 1993
93 years old
Add caption
This Christmas Card was sent to my mother Mary, by Joe Flynn,(my second cousin) son of William Flynn.  Joe is thanking my mother for helping him find Uncle Martin.  He states he had a good visit with him and made a tape recording of his visit for his Dad, ( William ) Joe found Uncle Martin to be a pleasant old man full of stories about home ( Flynn's Hill ) and that his Dad really enjoyed the tape.

A tape recording from my Great Uncle Martin, full of stories of Flynn's Hill. OHHHHHHHH!  BOY!, How I would love to get a hold of that tape!  Even just to talk to my cousin about his visit with Uncle Martin would be so great!  I have sent a message to Joe's sister Claire who is on Facebook, regarding my interest in finding her brother Joe.  I wonder if he still has the tape recording.  I sure hope he still has the tape recording and is willing to share this Treasure!

This photo of Uncle Martin was taken Christmas 1956, he reminds me very much of Grandfather. 

         Wishing you a Happy Holiday and the Best of Everything in the New Year!                            
                                  Love Elaine 

Sunday, December 11, 2011

My Great Uncles

Patrick Joseph Flynn
Stephen Flynn Jr
Philip Martin Flynn

Stephen Flynn Sr and Mary Ann Tubrett had 5 sons, My Great Uncles and My Grandfather.

1st child - Michael born 1884 - 1916 died at age 33 of Typhoid Fever, buried on Bell Island, NFLD.

2nd child - Thomas born 1885 - 1903 died at age 18 of Typhoid Fever, buried in Chapel's Cove, NFLD. Next to his Grandmother Elizabeth Dunlae Flynn.

5th child - Patrick born 1891 - 1963,  He moved to  in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada in 1918.  I was told he had 10 children, I have not made contact with any of them yet.

7th child - Stephen born 1895 - 1981, My Grandfather, lived in Harbour Main, NFLD and is buried in  Chapels Cove, NFLD

8th child - Philip Martin born 1900 - 1994, Uncle Ray states Uncle Martin went off to WWI at a young age ( 14?) and never returned to NFLD, he said several years after the war they received a letter that he was living in New York City.

I put the photos side by side to see how the brothers looked together, they probably never had a photo taken all together.

Two of the brothers died at a young age of Typhoid Fever.  One brother fought in WWI, and lived elsewhere their adult life. Two of the daughters went to the USA to live.  My Grandfather Stephen was the only son to remain on Flynn's Hill his entire life.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas on Flynn's Hill

My Mom often told the story of how exciting it was to receive an orange in their stocking at Christmas, to carry on that tradition, we received an orange or a tangerine in our stockings as well.

In a recent visit with Aunt Agnes, she shared her stories of Christmas, stating that when she came to the United States, she really missed the traditions of Christmas from back home.  Although they didn't have very much, Christmas was a very exciting time for them.

On Christmas Eve, the children went from house to house visiting neighbors.  They were given fruitcake, cookies and occasional sips of wine.  She remembers visitors stopping by their house as well, singing carols, telling stories and there always was laughter.  Their father shared his homemade moonshine with the guests.

Aunt Agnes states they never had a Christmas Tree, but stockings were hung with high hopes Santa Claus would come.  The stocking they hung, were not store bought or as elaborate, like the fancy ones we use today. They were their own stocking, that they wore to keep their feet warm and ones they were taught to knit themselves. To quote Aunt Agnes " Receiving an orange in your stocking was like receiving a million bucks"  They also received small trinkets, mouth organs, (what we call harmonicas) candies and sometimes an apple.  They were grateful for these simple gifts.

She remembers being extremely upset to learn there was no Santa Claus, she explains her mother would send Mary (my mother), to the store, when she returned she would often hide things and was very secretive.  Being the oldest, she was given this responsibility and the burden of keeping this secret.  As always, the spirit of Christmas lived on.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

My Great Aunts

My Great Aunts, Mary Ellen born 1887 and Elizabeth born 1892, left Flynn's Hill at a young age, They went to America to live around 1910. They are the 3rd and 6th children of Stephen Flynn Sr and Mary Ann Tubrett.  Mary Ellen married William J. Holden from Salmonier, Newfoundland. They were married in Boston Massachusetts in 1911, only to find out he was already married, she never remarried and kept the Holden name.  Elizabeth married Robert J Morey from Sandy Cove Newfoundland and lived in Massachusetts as well.

Aunt Agnes and Uncle Ray shared stories of receiving large barrels of clothing from their Aunts, that came from America. There was something for everyone in the barrel and there was much excitement when the barrel arrived.
This photo was found among my mother's collection with no names on the back.  Through this journey of studying family history, my sister and I have learned the importance of writing the name on the back of photos. So, with help from Uncle Ray, the process of elimination and knowledge obtain from studying our family tree, we have determined that this possible could be my Grandfather Stephen Flynn Jr's sisters.

Our thinking is as follows, The woman standing does look older than the woman sitting, Mary Ellen would have been around 23 years and Elizabeth would have been around 18 years.  They are not our grandmother's sisters, we knew them and have several pictures of them. Per Uncle Ray they are dressed in American style clothing. And according to the Reference Guide from Date an Old Photograph - Roger Vaughan Picture Library the photo is placed during the time period of the 1910's.

There is a strong possibility that this is a photo of my Great Aunts, and if so, it gives us an idea of what our Great Grandmother Mary Ann Tubrett may of looked like. There is a name across the bottom, of the studio that took the photo, which is very faint, it may lead to confirming this information.