Sunday, July 19, 2020

Andrew Harbison (??? - ???)

I had no reason to believe Andrew existed. I found him because of this wedding announcement, in the Belfast News-Letter of Wednesday, March 5, 1851.
Since Henry Harbison of Dungannon is undoubtedly the famed Redemptorist, and Andrew was his brother, William Harbison (b. 1780) must therefore have been his father. There is no record of Andrew's baptism. I'm inclined to think he was born after Henry, since his is not a typical Harbison forename, so this would place his birth between 1822 and 1825. He was evidently a solicitor or barrister. 
Fergus O'Farrell, Esq., his father in law, was a spirit-dealer of long standing on Waring Street in Belfast. Andrew himself was a wholesale grocer on Victoria Street, who alas, went bankrupt in 1853, and took a job as a clerk in a bonded tea warehouse, working for John James Moore, who was the principal of the Great Belfast Tea Fraud of 1857-1858. Andrew himself has a bit part in that, and was arrested by the police in October 1857. Andrew was unable to post bail, and spent six weeks in Antrim County Jail before being released on his own recognizance. However, he was acquitted on trial the following spring, and Moore had disappeared. Andrew also disappeared. I searched in vain for record of his death or that of his wife.
And then, I found this, one of the weirder discoveries of my genealogical career. 
So Andrew had died by 1879. But more intriguing was his widow's new beau, whose full name was Michel-Thomas Massif des Carreaux de Manefosse, a French aristocrat (natch), born January 24, 1820. His family had been stripped of their title in the French Revolution, but re-acquired it by legislation in 1859. Michel Thomas seems to have been rich, and had residences in Paris, in Normandy, and possibly elsewhere. How Mary O'Farrell Harbison ran into him is anyone's guess; I can only speculate that Andrew Harbison decamped to the Continent with John James Moore, settled in Brussels, and somehow worked his way into high society. But that's speculation. 
Mme Mary Elinor Massif des Carreaux de Manefosse was widowed again, poor lass, in 1886, and in an appropriate act of mourning, did a pilgrimage to Lourdes, now 30 years after its supposed apparitions. She then seemed to adjust quite nicely to a life of wealthy leisure, having been reported in London, in Nice, etc., at the appropriate seasons.
Meanwhile, again out of nowhere, a daughter of Andrew and Mary appeared, Mary Josephine (Minnie) Harbison. She seems to have been born in the 1850s, while Andrew was in Belfast, but again I can find no record. But on April 17, 1882, she married a Jospeh Shaw Mulholland, Esq., at the house of her aunt, Elizabeth Hughes Harbison, in Dungannon, or alternatively at the church oratory. This would suggest a mixed-marriage, which would further suggest Mary was not a baptized Catholic, since Mulholland certainly was. James and Bridget Harbison witnessed. 
Joseph and Minnie moved to Derry, where he practiced as a barrister. On May 13, 1891, Minnie had a daughter, Mary Josepha Henrietta Alice Shaw Mulholland (!), and the died of peritonitis a day later. Joseph seems to have abandoned his daughter, but Mme Massif des Carreaux did not. At the time of the 1901 census, the two lived at 10 Longfield Road in Ealing, London W5, worth about £ 2.6 million today, along with a nephew (Paul Fran├žone), The census puts the pair at 61 Landsdowne Place in Hove, Sussex, in 1911, a beautiful enough Regency townhouse I feel I must show a picture.


 Oddly enough, Captain O Shea, Kitty O Shea's cuckolded husband, lived at 19 Landsdowne Place.
Mme Mary Elinor Massif des Carreaux de Manefosse died in Hoveon January 10, 1920 at the ripe old age of 87. The death record cites a second residence at 30 Rue de la Bienfaisance, Paris, also a nice little pile in the quartier de l"Europe of the 8e Arrondissement. 
 Joseph Shaw Mulholland took to calling himself a bachelor, wrote several books of devotion to the Virgin Mary, and moved in with a housekeeper, in Moville, Donegal, altough he maintained offices in Derry. He died, a poor man, in 1915. 
Mary Josepha Henrietta Alice Shaw Mulholland never married, and seems to have become a determined world traveler. She settled for a while in Melbourne Australia, but died in 1970 in Christchurch, England, the last of her line.



Monday, March 2, 2020

David Harbison, 1742-1836: this is not the Harbison you're looking for

Although most people try to fuse them into one, it appears there were actually two David Harbisons in southwestern Virginia, abotu the time of the Revolutionary War. I'll focus first on the eponymous David, because for him we have the enormously useful Harbison-Carr family bible, in the possession of the State of Virginia but available online.

The same David is mentioned in Kentucky: A History of the State, Battle, Perrin, & Kniffin, 6th ed., 1887, Shelby Co.

WILLIAM SCOTT HARBISON was born in Shelby County, Ky., February 17, 1816, and is the second son of William and Elizabeth (Mahon) Harbison. His grandfather, William Mahon, was a Presbyterian minister. He came from Virginia to Boyle County, Ky., in 1796, and died at the age of sixty-three in Marion County, Ky. David Harbison, paternal grandfather of W. S. Harbison, came from Ireland about 1778, with wife and infant son, James, remained a while in the State of New York, and then moved to Wythe County, Va., and settled on a farm. Before leaving Virginia, in 1805, four more sons were born: David, Samuel, John and William, who at that time were all grown up, and large men, none under six feet, and Samuel was six feet six inches. The eldest son, James, married and remained in Virginia. The other four came with their father to Kentucky; all are now dead. They stopped one year in Fayette County, Ky., and in 1806 moved to Shelby County and bought a farm near Shelbyville. The grandfather died aged ninety-one years. His wife, Esther, died aged seventy-five. He and all his sons were sober, industrious, strictly Sabbath keeping and successful business men. William Harbison, father of W. S. Harbison, was born August 15, 1785, and died August 20, 1826. He served on campaign as an officer in the war of 1812, or 1813, and his brother, Samuel, served two campaigns in the same war as captain.

Here are the children, as listed in the family bible.

It is hard to credit the earlier dates in this account. New York was under the control of the British from 1776 until 1783. The British would not have been inclined to allow a young family to land and then cross the Hudson, New Jersey, and the Delaware, and across southern Pennsylvania and Maryland to the Shenandoah Valley. Far more likely David immigrated earlier, perhaps even before James was born, although it is possible David and his family were detained in New York until after the peace, at which point they made their way south to Virginia. Wythe County, by the way, did not exist until 1790. Before then is was the now extinct Fincastle County. In support of the earlier arrival hypothesis, Baxter D. and Davis Harbison, sons of David, both list their father's birthplace as Virginia in the 1880 and 1900 censuses.

Other than this, the Kentucky History seems to be accurate. David, Esther and their four youngest sons migrated to Shelby County, KY, in the mid-1800s. James remained in Virginia, in Wythe County when it was formed in 1790, and had three daughters, all of whom married, Eliza, who married Thomas Jefferson Adams and died in Loudon Co. Tennessee in 1854; Esther, to John Carr on Mar 27 1823, and Polly, to William Wyson, in 1825.David seemed to live with his son Samuel in 1820 and 1830; Esther died in October 1824.

Virginian Harbisons and the Revolution

As part of my duties as the administrator of the Harbison surname DNA list, I've decided it's time to see if I can make a little more sense of the early Harbisons in America. And the real problem is there were at least three groups of them, approximately in SE Pennsylvania, the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, and Lincoln County, South Carolina. They likely immigrated over a long period from around 1700 to about 1772, with the early immigrants tending more northerly. Of course, Pennsylvania and the Shenandoah valley were connected by the Great Wagon Road, which continued further into North and South Carolina. But the overall trend was westward, the Virginians moving into Kentucky, the Carolinians into Tennessee and the deeper South.

The jumping off point for the Virginians is the list of Harbisons who served in the Revolutionary War.I've thrown in two Herbertsons who probably aren't relevant, and a Herbison, who may be.

...and we'll start with David, who may in fact be two Davids.