Last month, the New York City Municipal Archives released 9.3 million historical vital records on a free online platform. For me, this was like hitting the jackpot. I no longer had to be selective about which records to purchase, and they were readily available. I found all kinds of birth, marriage, and death records, most confirming dates and places I had already researched. As with most new websites, it has its share of kinks that need to be worked out. Not all the records are indexed and I couldn’t find the records I was looking for, so I started to do some general searches. One of those searches was for the surname Flood, which was the maiden name of my maternal great-grandmother, Margaret Flood.
Margaret was born on 23 July 1871 in County Longford, Ireland to James Flood and Catherine Dunn. 1 Later Margaret immigrated to the United States and on 19 June 1892, she married Alfred Knowles at St. John’s [Episcopal] Church in Brooklyn, New York. 2 She had six children with Alfred and remained in Brooklyn until her death on 1 December 1953. 3
Margaret had three sisters all born in County Longford, Ireland. The first child born to James and Catherine was named Anne, born on 11 February 1867 and died shortly after birth. 4 Margaret’s sister Mary was born on 27 April 1868. 5 Another sister named Anne was born on 11 June 1874. 6
I hadn’t known what happened to either of Margaret’s sisters until last week when I found her sister Anne’s marriage certificate. What I discovered was that Anne also known as Annie, married Alexander Francis McCulloch, photographer, on 27 October 1895 by E.H. Wellman, rector of the Church of the Atonement [Episcopal] in Brooklyn, New York. 7 After all this time I finally knew that my great-grandmother did not come to the United States alone.
From there I was able to put together bits and pieces of Anne’s life in Brooklyn. She gave birth to her only child Alexander Van Brunt McCulloch on 17 November 1899 at her home on 210 14th Street in Brooklyn. 8
Anne’s husband Alexander died of pneumonia on 23 December 1927 at the age of 54. 9
The 1930 census shows that Anne owned a home at 25 Dictum Court which is in the Gerritsen Beach section of Brooklyn. She was living with her son Alexander, his wife Sadie, and her grandson Joseph. 10 She was just living two miles away from my great-grandmother Margaret who was living in Sheepshead Bay. 11
I still don’t know whatever became of their sister Mary. I’ve reached out to a descendant of Anne’s and am hoping to hear back.