The Barry Family of Westfield


THE BARRYS: On October, 17, 1836, in a Roman Catholic church in the parish of Lisgoold, County Cork, Ireland, a baby boy was christened Michael Barry. In attendence were his godparents, Patrick Desmond and Catherine Barry. Born in the town of Knockakeen to the parents Michael and Ellen (Barry) Barry, (yes, her maiden name was Barry, an extremely popular surname in that section of Ireland) Michael would only spend 14 short years in Ireland. Surviving the devastating famine that would occur in the 1840's, after the repeated failure of the potato crops, a famine in which over one million Irish would starve to death and another million would flee the country, Michael too would leave his homeland for a new world.

Following his brother John, who two years earlier at the age of sixteen sailed to America, Michael set off from Ireland. Most likely he follwed the usual route. Walk from his home town which was about 15 miles outside of City Cork in south-east Ireland and sail to Liverpool to board one of the immigrant ships to New York. These ships, known as coffin ships, due to the fact that so many Irish immigrants died on the voyage to America from disease and hunger, crowded as many passangers as they could in their holds.

In the early part of February, fourteen year old Michael, apparently alone, boarded the sailing vessel 'St. George', in Liverpool with a couple of hundred other Irish emigrants. His age is listed as '13', probably because on most vessels children under fourteen received a reduced rate. On March 22, 1851, the ship arrived at New York (This was prior to Ellis Island) and Michael set off north up the Connecticut River valley towards Westfield, Massachusetts, where his brother John, now eighteen, worked for the farmers John Moseley, Col. David Moseley and Ira Yeamans. John's first job upon arrival to the United States was drawing wood chips from Southwick to Westfield for a quarter a day, but by 1861 he was employed by the Boston and Albany railroad from which he would retire from in 1896.

Michael's parents were married on February 19, 1833 in Parish Lisgoold, County Cork. The church record was entered as Michaelum Barry and Helenam Barry of Lisgoold. Michael's residence is not listed, The marriage was witnesses by Patritius Ryan and Patritius Barry. the priest was Gulielmus (William) McCarthy. the couple had three other children besides Michael. they were David, born in 1833, John, born in 1835 and William in 1839. all boys appeared to have come to America except David. Below are copies of their baptismal records.

David Barry : Baptized October 1, 1933 Residence of Parents: Not recorded Sponsors: Joannis Barry, Helena Keefe Priest: J. Walsh Joannes (John) Barry: Baptized January 2, 1935 Residence of Parents: Not Recorded Sponsors: Michael Daly, Elizabeth Ryan Priest: Not Recorded (First Barry to emigrate to the United States in 1849 and settled in Westfield, Massachusetts). Michael Barry: Baptized October 17, 1836 Residence of Parents: Knockakeen Sponsors: Patricius Desmond, Catherine Barry Priest: Not Recorded -.Came to Westfield in 1851. Gulielmus (William) Barry: Baptized February 1, 1839 Residence of Parents: Brueckakeem (town not in records) Sponsors: Gulielmus Barry, Johanna Sweeney

William most likely came to Westfield with his mother Ellen, who was probably a widow at this time, around 1854 when he was about 14 years of age. In 1870, he was a laborer on a farm with 200 dollars of personal property, but no land. His wife was Mary, and both could neither read nor write. Mary was also from Ireland. It seems they were married around 1864, with their first child coming in 1865. They had four children; twins Michael and Ellen, age 3, Maurice, age 5, and Richard four months. William would die in November of 1871 of consumption (Pulmonary Tuberculosis). His son Richard died from unknown causes, most likely Scarlet Fever, in June of 1872 at age 2 years, 4 months. William's gravestone in St. Mary's Cemetery, Westfield, reads

                                             William Barry
                                       Born In Co. Cork, Ireland
                                           Died Nov 18 1871
                                                  Age 28
                                          Requiescat in Pace
                                Erected by His Affectionate Wife Mary
-The age is a couple of years off, but this was common at this time since birth dates were not really important and a person's age was usually guessed at. William may also have been a veteran of the Civil War. This was revealed by a GAR flag holder on his grave. The GAR stands for Grand Army Of The Republic and as a Civil War veteran's group.So far, records of his service have not turned up, but he may have been a part of the 31st Mass Infantry, part of which which was formed in Westfield.


Michael's first job was as a laborer, more than likely on the farms that his brother was employed. In May of 1861, John married an Irish girl from the parish of Rathcomack in Co. Cork, a one Elizabeth Nagle, daughter of Arthur N. and Ellen Nagle. Elizabeth was working as a domestic for a local farmer and widow, Charles Hathaway, taking care of his three small children and eighty year old mother. They traveled to St. Michael's Cathedral in Springfield, Massachusetts since there was no Catholic church in Westfield at the time and only about a dozen Irish residents.

A year later, in July, Michael would make this same trip to be married by the same Reverend, Rev. M.P. Galligher. His wife was his sister-in-law's younger sister, Catherine 'Katy' Nagle. At this time, Michael was listed as a farmer and Katy had been employed, as many were at the time, in the whip factories in town. Westfield came to be known as 'Whip City' due to its production of horse whips.

By 1865, John and Michael were living next to each other. By this time their mother, Ellen, was in America and living with John. Living with Michael was the boy's mother-in-law, Ellen Nagle and her illegitimate grandchild, Patick A. Nagle. Ellen married Arthurt Naglein February of 1821 by Rev. Patrick Shean. They had seven children; Patrick, Katy (Michael Barry's wife), Elizabeth (Michael Barry's brother John's wife), Thomas, Michael, James and John. It appears Arthur ran a school of some sorts out of his house in Ireland. Only the two girls were still alive in 1865. Michael died in 1855 in Westfield. The fate of the others is unknown. Patrick came to America around 1852. He worked on local farms until he earned enough money to send for his mother. About 1857, he traveled to Springfield to send the money for Ellen's passage. She arrived a few months later. Upon arrival, Patrick was her sole supporter. They lived for about three years in a tenement owned by Calman that cost 24 dollars a year. He then built a small house for about 200 dollars, on land bought from James Moseley, where he lived for a time with his mother and sister. Often though, he worked by the day, or sometimes the month, for local farmers and stayed at the employer's residence, though still supported his mother by providing "provisions and wood." Ellen's only source of income for was working part-time braiding whips at home. Prior to enlisting, Patrick paid several months rent for his mother in advance. Patrick enlisted on September 19th, 1862 and was assigned to Company K of the 24th Regiment Connecticut Volunteers of the Union Army. He recorded his residence as New Haven, Connecticut. His name does not appear on any muster rolls since he died before the company was mustered. While encamped in Middletown, Connecticut, Patrick became sick around October 9th and was moved to a local boarding house. He died six days later of typhoid pneumonia, as attested by Dr. Baker. His name is listed on the Civil War Memorial in Westfield Patrick was the son of Katie's and Elizabeth's brother Patrick and a local Irish girl. Patrick, the father, died in Westfield in 1862 at the age of 32. Another Nagle brother, Michael, also lived in Westfield and died in 1855 at the age of 30. Ellen Nagle had arrived sometime prior to 1860, probably around 1854 and possibly with another son, William. In 1868, Michael became an American citizen, as his brother had done seven years earlier.


By 1870, Michael and Katy had four children; John, Arthur (my great-grandfather), Edward and James and was working as a laborer, probably for the Boston & Albany railroad. At this time, Michael had real estate (his house) valued at $1500.oo and a personal estate of $450.oo. and were living in the Prospect Hill section of Westfield, which was the Irish section of the city. In 1880, according to the national census, Michael had become a Section Foreman for the B&A Railroad. Just a house away lived his brother John, also an employee of the B&A. With John was living both his mother and also his mother-in-law, both of who were now in their eighties.

Two days after the census taker wrote down this information, Ellen Nagle died of "old age" . She was eighty-six. On August 13, 1881, eighty-seven year old Ellen Barry would pass away due to "paralysis 'shock'". Her father is listed in the death records as "John", but the name of the mother is blank. The next year, Michael's wife Katy would die on March 30 at the age of about forty-five. Katy succumbed from typhoid fever, leaving Michael a widow with five children. (John, Arthur, Edward, James and Catherine, the youngest. Another daughter, nine month old Ellen, died in 1872 from cholera.

In 1889, Arthur married a local girl, Grace R. King, daughter of Henry A. and Ellen (Phillips) King. She was born in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada in 1869 and came to Westfield as a young girl.

Henry A. died at the age of 50 in 1886 of typhoid fever. He was a whipmaker, as was his eldest son, Joseph.His father was Joseph King of Westfield and Hannah T. (Tuttle) of nearby Russell, Massachusetts. Henry had two other brothers; Roderick F, who was five years younger, and Edgar G., who was eleven years younger. Joseph was worth 1,500 dollars in 1850. Joseph was born in 1811 and died in 1889. Hannah was born in 1816 and had two brothers and eight sisters. She died in 1894. He parents were Abel Tuttle and Hannah Gowdy, both of who were born in Connecticut prior to moving to Russell prior to 1790. Hannah Gowdy Tuttle died in Westfield in 1850 of consumption. Hannah Tuttle is a direct descendent of the William Tuttle family of Boston and Connecticut who came to America in 1635.

According to the 1880 census, Arthur Barry's wife Grace's parents, Henry and Ellen (Phillips), were born somewhere in Massachusetts. Since all their children; Joseph H., Nellie H. Frank H., Ada S., Henry A. and Grace R. were born in Canada, it appears they moved to Canada before returning to the United States. They arrived in Westfield around 1873.

In researching the King-Tuttle-Gowdy line, I discovered that the Barry Family has links to William Bradford who came to America on the Mayflower and served as Governor of the Plymouth Colony.

Here is the ancestor chart.
1. William Bradford married Alice Carpenter in 1623.
       William's first wife Dorothy fell off the Mayflower and drowned
       on December 7, 1620, when it was anchored in Provincetown Harbor. William 
       Bradford died in 1657, having been governor of the Plymouth 
       Colony for almost the entire period since 1621.
2. William's and Alice's son William Bradford Jr. married Alice Richards in 1650.
3. Their daughter Alice married Rev. William Adams in 1680.
4. Their daughter Alice Adams married Rev. Nathan Collins Jr. in 1700.
5. Their son William Deacon Collins married Anne Jones in about 1740.
6. Their only child Abi Collins married Alexander Gowdy in 1760 in Somers, Connecticut.
      Alexander served four terms of duty in the French and Indan War. He died after return from the  
       Havana Expedition, possibly yellow fever, near the end of the war. He was a sergeant. He died at the age 
       of 21, two years after he was married.
7. Their son Alexander Jr. married Hannah MacGregor about 1780. He served in the Revolutionary War and is buried in Pond Cemetery in Russell, Massachusetts.
8.  Their daughter Hannah Gowdy married  Abel Tuttle in 1808.
       Abel was killed by a falling tree. His father served in the Revolutionary War
       and was partially disabled because of it.
9. Their daughter Hannah Tuttle married Joseph King of Westfield in 1834.
10. Their oldest son, Henry A. King, married Ellen J. Phillips in Westfield in 1860.
11. Their daughter Grace R. King married Arthur J. Barry in Westfield in 1889.
12. Their son Edward F. Barry married Giovanna "Jean" Catherine Baruffa in 1933.
13. The had two sons, Edward Jr. and John E. Barry, who are 10th great grandsons of William Bradford of the Mayflower. 
Also in this line is a one Mary Pease, who was accused of witchcraft during the infamous Salem Witch Trails and imprisioned until finally freed.


The turn of the century found the Barry brothers living next door to each other on Prospect Street. Arthur and Grace were living on Montgomery Street with four childre; Nellie(Helen C.), Authur J., William M.and Grace E.. In tenyears, three more children would be added to the family; Morris F. (who would become a streetcar conductor), Margaret M. and Edward, my grandfather.

Another daughter, Minnie, would die in 1894 at the age of three months. Arthur was employed in 1900 in the whip factory and in 1910 was listed as a "straightener" in the whip factory. 1920 would find him as a checker for the American Railway Express shipping company.

Arthur, known by his nickname of "Attie", would in later years be employed by the Public Works Department in the city. In his younger years, he was widely known as an ice skater, both figure and racing and was also a roller skater, playing 'roller polo". Arthur also played Westfield River Baseball, a sport his sons Edward and William (Billy) would excel at.

In the spring of 1911, Michael passed away at age seventy-three. For over twenty-five years he had been a section forman for the railroad. He died at home, and had been "failing for some time, gradually becoming totally blind". His funeral was the first held at the Church of Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament. His wife's. some 29 years earlier, was the second at St. Mary's. In 1913, John's wife Elizabeth died at age eighty-one. John died eighteen days later at the age of eighty. After the death of his wife, John had been "steadly falling" and had not been well for the past five years, though he was "able to do work about the place". He is discribed in his obituary as one of the first Irish residents of the town. John and Elizabeth only had one child, Michael, but had fourgrandsons and a granddaughter. (William, John,Joseph, James, Elizabeth).

Arthur's son Edward, my grandfather, graduated from Westfield High School in 1926. He was enrolled in the Business Course section of the high school, diplomas at the time were segregated into such concentrations as Academic, Business and General. His nickname was "Speed"and his ambition was "to be clever". He played third base for the baseball team and right forward for the basketball team. In his senior year, he led the local high school baseball league with a .403 average. 52 points higher than second player, and was choosen for the all star team. He was described as "an ideal leadoff man" who "covers his territory well".

Edward would continue his baseball career in the local semi-pro baseball league playing for 'Happy's Cubs'. His older brother William 'Billy' Barry was also a long time player in the league. At the same time, Eddie was also coach of the Prospect Hill grammer school team. He also played for 'Old Colony' with his brother in 1927 to 1929, batting .400,.465 and .324. He was selected to the All Star team in 1928, finishing second in the batting title race. He repeated this again in 1932 in the Twilight League, finishing second again in the batting race with a .500 batting average. In 1933, a hard line drive off his bat struck an opposing player in the head. The hit, according to the papers, "could easily have been fatal" had it been a little higher.

In 1934, Eddie broke his leg sliding into second base in a game in Russell. Laid up at his home on Cowles Court, and unable to work, a benefit, describes as a "monstrous affair", was held. Boxing matches, a benefit ball game, music and a magician were just some of the entertainment, which drew 2500 people. It appears that this is the last year that he played ball.

Edward Barry's older brother Arthur Jr. were a veteran in World War One. He registered for the draft in Westfield on June of 1917 at the age of 23. Near the end of the war, he was woundedin the Argonne Forest drive. According to newspaper accounts, "it was while he was leading a batch of men into battle in the Argonne Forest sector that a shell exploded behind him, throwing him into a shellhole and causing one of his knees to be severely wrenched." This injury sent him to the hospital for some time before returning to Westfield. He was also in a majority of the large battle near the end of the war.

Edward, upon graduation, went to work for the office of the H.B. Smith company, and in 1928 began employment for the city Public Works department, like his father. He would remain in the department for forty-six years, serving the last ten as Superintendent. He served under ten different mayors and described the toughest job he ever had was the the installation of the sewer lines, back whe all digging and construction was done by hand. His marriage to wife Jean (Barufa) produced two sons, Edward and John, my father. Edward and Jean were married February 18, 1933 in New Lebeanon, New York after eloping. Jean's sister Marie and her boyfriend, Ken Pollard, were the witnesses. His father, Arthur, passed away in May of 1951 at the age of eighty-five. His wife Grace has died in 1941 after a "brief illness".


The Story of the Barufa Family:Read about the Barufa Family of Westfield

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