April 15, 2007

James Russell Coffey

James Russell Coffey is one of the last remaining veterans of WW1. I recently replied to an e-mail with the following information pertaining to him:

The earliest info that I can find on Russell begins in Crawford Co., OH in 1850. The entire family remained in Crawford Co., OH up to at least Russell.

I'll work from Russell back:

1900 Census: Russell, born Sep. 1898, son of George, born Jan. 1869 in OH (Surname spelled Coffey in census; George was a farmer)

1880 Census: George in household with Michael and Mary B. Coffey [sic]. Michael was a farmer who was born in OH, father in Ireland and mother in NY. Mary and her parents were born in Baden (Germany).

1870 Census: George, born c1865*, son of Michael, born 1837 in OH. (Surname spelled Coffee; Michael was a wagon maker)

1860 Census: Michael, born c1833*, born OH, wife is named Barbara, born Baden. George obviously not born yet. (Surname is spelled Coffee; Michael is wagon maker)

In 1850 I found Michael in the household with 36-yr old Michael Sheridan. (Surname spelled Coffee; Michael was a wagon maker, born Ireland, and wife Ann, age 48, born NY). Ann may be Michael's remarried mother.

Other children in the family were:

Michael Coffee, age 13, born OH

Matthew Lynch, age 11, born Ireland

Andrew Coffee, age 9, born OH

John Coffee, age 4, born OH

Margaret Sheridan, age 4, born OH

I didn't find anything about the Coffee family on Ancestry. Neither did I check 1840 because I don't know who Michael's father was. I haven't checked Ancestry for the Sheridan family either. It appears that Russell's ancestors came to America from Ireland shortly before the Civil War, perhaps earlier.

Name: James R. Coffey
Serial Number: 5284607
Race: W
Residence: Creston, O.
Enlistment Division: National Army
Enlistment Location: Columbus, O.
Enlistment Date: 12 Oct 1918
Birth Place: New Washington, O.
Birth Date / Age: 1 Sept 1898
Assigns Comment: Students' Army Training Corps OSU Columbus O to Discharge Private Honorable discharge 12 Dec 1918.
Volume #: 3 Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, Sailors and Marines in the World War, 1917-1918. Vol. I-XXIII. Columbus, OH, USA: F. J. Heer Printing Co., 1926.

*age differences are likely result of census taker error

1 comment:

  1. Russell was my great uncle. His parents were George Washington Coffey and Etta Matilda Grafmiller. George's bd was 1/15/1870. George's parents were John Archibald Coffey and Mary Ellen Hicks. Mike Coffey is a brother of John A. and owned a wagon shop in Waynesburg, OH. Both worked in the shop for 7-8 years. I have John A.'s bd as 7/4/1843 and died at age 71. I have an original picture of him with a note that he was mayor of Creston, OH at the time. John A's parents were Michael Coffey and Mary MacDougal.

    Per George W Coffey, Michael came to the US from Ireland on the same ship as the MacDougals. The MacDougals came from Scotland. Mike must have met Mary on the boat? Probably married her in the east before moving to Crawford County, Ohio. The approximate date of landing, marriage, birth of children are as follows: landed about 1828-30, married about 1828-1835, Mary born about 1835, later married a Brevard. Mike born 1836 or 37 - died at age 76. John was born 7/4/1843 - died at age 71. Andrew born 1841 - died in 1865 in an accident involving horses and a wagon. Michael came from County Cork, Ireland. Michael drowned in June 1843. He was a stone cutter by trade and may have practiced some in the Boston area before moving to Ohio. Tradition is that he studied for the priesthood in Ireland and that he gave up the church and came to the US because of some dissatisfaction with church doctrine. He was reputed to have an education and had lots of books that no one else could read, perhaps in Latin? Family tradition was that Michael were due to fall heirs to considerable property in Ireland. Michael is buried in the Hannah Cemetery east of Tiro, Ohio. Michael came over on the same boat as a man named McCarthy. This man had a son named John who lived in New Washington.

    my email address is greg@coffeynet.com

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