The 1860 census shows that although most of the people who were part of Fulton’s very early years had been born in the United States, a large ethnic portion came from Ireland. At least 250 people are listed as having been born in Ireland. Most of the occupations for men were either laborer or daylaborer but other occupations were drayman, blacksmith, newsboy (age 25), woodsawyer, mason, miller, and farmer. For females it was servant, seamstress, housekeeper, or domestic.
There were three Pat Hurley’s: Pat Hurley and his wife, Mary, Pat Hurley and his wife, Bridgett, and Pat Hurley and his wife Lutetia.
First names for females showed twenty women named Mary with the next most popular being Catherine. Bridgett, Ann, and Margrett were next in popularity. Two women were named Honora, one married to John Crowley and the other to James Cotter. The most unusual name for a female born in Ireland but living in Fulton was Saboyla. A wife was usually listed without an occupation but there were two Irish families with two incomes: Pat Collins laborer and his wife, Mary, housekeeper and Pat Cusic and his wife Sarah, housekeeper.
Most Irish attended the Immaculate Conception Church formed at an early point in Fulton’s history. A building was erected in 1862. Bent’s History of Whiteside County states, “More teams can be seen standing at this church on Sunday, than at all the other churches in the city combined.”
Last names in 1860 match some current names in Fulton. In 1860, there were the Bennett’s: William Bennett and his wife, Ellen, John Bennett and his wife, Eliza, and Pat Bennett and his wife, Jane. Daly’s lived here: John Daly and his wife, Catherine, John Daly and his wife, Mary, Thomas Daly and his wife, Ellen, John Daley and his wife, Mary. John Considine and his wife Hannah have relatives with connections in Fulton. Was Bridgett Fields related to Gene Fields or John Loftis to Don Loftus? Was Bridgett Cain related to the Blys?
And I am most interested in knowing about those Irish people, John Flack, miller, and his wife Nancy.