Sunday, March 17, 2019

St. Patrick's Day Board, Fun Facts & Irish Ancestors

Happy St. Patrick's day!
Hope you have a little bit of luck today!

Recently, I've discovered some fun facts about March 17.

St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. 
He actually wasn't Irish, but was enslaved and taken to Ireland as a teen.
He is credited as the founder of Christianity in Ireland. 
March 17 is the anniversary of his death and was celebrated with a feast.
The day commemorates Christianity, a holy day of obligation and celebrates Ireland's culture and heritage. 
He is originally associated with the color blue but it changed to green after the Order of St. Patrick chose that as it's official color.
They day is celebrated all over the world and especially in America with all it's Irish immigrants.

New York City's St. Patrick's day parade started in 1848 by Irish Aid societies to help Irish immigrant families and is the oldest parade in America.
Do you have an Irish ancestor? 

My great, great, great grandma, Elizabeth Hannah Morrison Harbertson was born in County Down Ireland in 1832.
Her parents and their parents and so on were all from Northern Ireland. 
She was 22 when she married and Englishman, James Harbertson.
I wonder how they met? Was it in Ireland or England? 
How did her family feel about her marrying an Englishman?
James was a coal miner and so would be his sons James and Joseph.   Radcliff was a coal mining town. Their uncle, John Scott (married to James' sister Ellen) was the foreman at the pit or mine they worked in.
They lived in Northumberland England and can be found in the Whales census of 1861. At that time, Elizabeth was 28 and had 4 children, Mary Ann (6), James (4), Hannah (3) and Joseph (1).
How did they get to America?
They were converts to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and had a strong desire to gather with fellow church members in the States.
Their family and friends all thought they were a little crazy for leaving England, but in 1874 they set sail from Liverpool on the ship Nevada to America, arriving on June 23 1874,
Elizabeth and James were both 41 at the time and traveled with their children Hannah (16), Joseph (14), Jane (11),  and John (10). (Their daughter Elizabeth died at age one in 1866) The other children, Mary Ann, James and their spouses would sail on the ship Wyoming on May 12, 1875 to later join the family in America.

I love hearing stories of ancestors and how they ended up in America
It's a true melting pot.
An today, on St. Patrick's day, I'll share the story of James and Elizabeth with my family.
And leave you with this Irish blessing.


  1. My fiance is an Irishman and I have always been a fan of the Irish. So much fun .

  2. Your fiancé! Congratulations! I'm so happy for you, when is the big day?


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