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Murtha, James c1919 – 1897


Posted By: Joy Moore (email)
Date: 9/16/2017 at 14:57:01

Iowa Plain Dealer April 9, 1897, FP, C5

James Murtha, whose death occurred March 26, 1897, was born in the county Monaghan, Ireland. Married in 1846 to Alice Traynor, who survives him. Their golden aniversary{sic} was last May, now nearly 51 years since. Eleven children were born of this marriage; four are dead, and seven now living were in attendance during his last illness; Mrs. Mary McNevin, Plymouth Rock, Ia.,was born in his own birthplace in 1847. Soon after this event he came to this country and settled in Ottawa, Ill.; moved to Arlington, Ill., where John was born, thence back to Ottawa, where James was born, thence to Chicago, where first sorrow came in the death of James; moved to Huntley and to Dundee, where Catharine, now Mrs. P. F. Horan, of Madison, S. D., was born; returning again to Huntley, in which place Elizabeth, now Mrs. M. F. McCabe, of Plymouth Rock, la., and Patrick and twin brother unnamed, were born. From Huntly, Ill., to their place in Orleans township, Winneshiek county, Iowa. Alice, Mrs. M. Whalan, Annie, Bridget, Mrs. Wm. Mullany, of Plymouth Rock, and Rosa were born here. Again sorrow, the third and fourth time came by the death of Patrick and Annie, when both were laid to rest within one week.
He bore his ilness{sic} patiently without murmur or complaint, neither of himself or attendants, but heroically strove to sustain life by his own efforts; conscious and clear of mind he knew everybody and was perfectly resigned to the will of our Heavenly Father, christian like, and when the end came it was peaceful and happy. The funeral was on Monday and his remains were laid at rest in the St. Agnes cemetery, by all the loving members of the family. May he rest in peace.
James Murtha was reared and served his youth and early manhood in the occupation of farming in Ireland. He had what is here called a common school education; to say the least it was exceptional, considering the opportunities for such in his native land. He was no exception in the many hundreds of thousands of Irishmen who preceded and followed him to this country to find a home. There was an ideal home—it was not in their birth land—not because of any imperfection or disadvantages of soil or climate or charms and attractions of the mother land, but because of the blighting touches of the masters of monarchy, aristocracy and caste. That home dreamed of, longed for is here, not so much in city possessions or fine acres, as a spot free. To them it was to be more; it embodied possessions, citizenship, equality and justice. He accomplished his desire, also possession of home, having a patent by James Buchanan to his premption{sic} here, and becoming a citizen by choice soon after coming to this country, casting the first vote for James Buchanan—always in the party with which he cast that vote, never aspiring to any public position nor actively in politics. To “live and let live” is an expression of the measure of justice accorded to his neighbors and associates without distinction. If there is one quality we feel grateful for and appreciate, it is that of the freedom and equality of religion in which he lived—in association in voting and in business no distinction, no issue because of religion—the resolution which impelled him to migrate to this country was not complete. Though spending a few years in Illinois at farming, mining and and{sic} railroading, providing means, until with an ox team and covered wagon he brought his family to his late home here in 1855, upon which he had since resided. Fortune did not always smile, adversity came and sorrow and privation, a repetition only of the first settlements of all of our forefathers from the Atlantic westward. Thus briefly told was his life, ending with a desire to become a good citizen of heaven. COM.

Mother and sisters join me in expressing heartfelt and sincere thanks to near neighbors and friends who kindly and generously assisted in sickness, death and burial of father.


St. Agnes Cemetery

Winneshiek Obituaries maintained by Bill Waters.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen

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