IAGenWeb Project - Allamakee co.

Patrick Whalen


Among the most profitable farms located in Allamakee county is that of Patrick Whalen, comprising four hundred and forty-one acres on section 26, French Creek township. He is one of the early pioneers of this section, where he was brought by his mother in 1858. A native of New York, he was born in Oneida county on April 13, 1851, and is a son of Thomas and Nora (Carney) Whalen [*notes], natives of Ireland, in which county they were married. The father with his family emigrated to America and established a home in Oneida county, New York, but lived but a short time after coming to this country, passing away when his son Patrick was but an infant. In 1858 his widow and her children came to Allamakee county and here she purchased forty acres of unimproved land on section 35 in French Creek township. Courageously taking up her duties of providing for the family, she undertook the cultivation of her farm and there her children grew to maturity. The mother ever continued to make her home on that property, where she passed away several years ago. Of her six children two are now living: Patrick, of this review; and Peter, who makes his home in Decorah, Iowa. Those deceased are: Elizabeth, who became the wife of John Lauchlin, of French Creek township; William, who enlisted from Oneida county, New York, for service in the Civil war and was killed during that conflict; Thomas, who died on the old homestead in 1888; and James, who passed away at the age of twenty-one in this county. Patrick Whalen was the youngest of these six children. He was educated in the district schools and early began to take up life's duties by assisting in the work of the farm and driving teams in order to break the land. At the age of twenty-six he had acquired the means to purchase one hundred and sixty acres, slightly improved, and by close application and following modern and up-to-date methods has succeeded in gaining such gratifying results that he was enabled to extend the boundaries of his farm from time to time until it now includes four hundred and forty-one acres of fertile land. He has greatly improved his property and has erected thereon suitable and substantial barns, outbuildings and sheds and his residence is comfortable and commodious. The latest farm machinery and implements can be found upon his property and he is ever ready to take up new methods which promise greater yields from his acres. In 1876 Mr. Whalen was united in marriage to Miss Julia Reagan, a native of Center township, Allamakee county, and a daughter of Daniel Reagan, one of the earliest pioneers of this section. Mr and Mrs Whalen have nine children, all of whom are living: Nora, the wife of P.J. McCauley, of French Creek township; Daniel J., a plumber of La Crosse, Wisconsin; James, who is studying for the priesthood; and William T., Mary, Peter, Charles, Frank and Angela, at home. Mr. Whalen has always supported the democratic party and is well informed upon all matters of a public or political nature. For three terms he served efficiently as township trustee and while in the office of school director gave evidence of his interest in the cause of education. He and his family are devout communicants of the Catholic church, in the work of which they take and active and helpful interest. The career of Mr. Whalen is proof of the fact that success is but ambition's answer and what he has attained is but the natural outcome of industry and energy dominated by a progressive spirit. He is highly respected and esteemed for what he has attained, and the confidence and good-will which he receives from his friends and neighbors are highly merited.

-transcribed by Cathy Joynt-Labath


Research Notes

*Nora's maiden name was Higgins.  In researching baptismal records for the parish of Ballygarrett, Co Wexford, Ireland, the entries for the older Whalen siblings list the father as Thomas Whelan and the mother as Hannah Higgins.  Nora shows up as "Hannah" and "Hanora" in various censuses and on the ship "Margaret" manifest, which landed in New York City May 3, 1849. - contributed by Matthew Whalen, June 2007 [researchers needing additional information about this family can contact Matthew from his personal website]

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