I received the Bible from my grandmother, Sarah Ann McManus Kothe, who was my mother, Helen Kothe's, stepmother and my father, Walter McBride's, aunt. This occurred in 1968 when my grandmother could no longer live alone. She moved into the Convent at Coleman High School in Kingston, New York, with her daughter, Alice Clohessy, who was a nun in the Ursaline Order. Gerard Clohessy, her son, was a navigator in the Eighth Air Force and flew many missions in a B-17 over France and Germany until he was killed in action in 1944 or 1945. He had been shot down previously and had escaped with the help of the French underground. According to father and grandmother, who visited other crewmembers convalescing at Trinity Pawling High School, the aircraft was shot down and all crewmembers parachuted from the stricken ship. Gerard was seen leaving the plane, but evidently his chute did not open. He is buried in France.
The family history before the Bible is limited to what my father told me and the settlers in Vermont. Either the McBrides or the McDevitts came to America from Straban, Ireland, on the northwest coast. I do not know exactly when this happened. According to the Bible, Susan McDevitt married Neil McBride on October 6, 1868 and the witnesses were Susan McBride and William McBride. It is unknown if they were brother and sister or husband and wife. According to church records, Susan and Neal (different spelling) were married on February 22, 1869, and the witnesses were Michael McBride and Elizabeth McPhilomy. Could this be the person referred to as Lizzie Doherty in the Bible?
Neil McBride was supposedly killed in a marble quarry accident November 6, 1876 leaving Susan with four children, Patrick, Mary, Michael and Johnny. Susan, after a number of years, married Henry McManus on June 20, 1880 at St. Stevens Church (location unknown). The witnesses were Charles McDevitt and Jonnie Himlin. Their children were Henry, twin babies who were born and died before being named, and Sarah McManus (Kothe) my step grandmother on my mother's side and my aunt on my father's side.
John McBride and Jane Kane had two children, Charles McBride and Helen. Patrick McBride and Catherine (last name unknown) had two children, Nellie and Marie McBride.
Another entry in the marriage record in Henry McManus on January 12, 1908 (no bride listed), but on my family tree that I composed a few years ago, the name of his wife appears which is Elizabeth Shay. They had one son, Arthur McManus.
The next entry is Michael McBride and Emma Koch (spelled Cook on the marriage license in my possession), my grandfather on February 12, 1892 at Holy Cross Church on Manhattans west side. Witnesses were William Conlan and Emma (Bear) Conlan. Sarah Ann McManus married Joseph Clohessy on September 24, 1911.
When I was a young boy, we used to take trips to East Dorset. I have seen the marble quarries that my ancestors toiled in and the family house my father lived in when he left New York City around 1911. Neil McBrides grave isnt in East Dorset, but nearby and I have seen it. Also there are many McBride gravestones in the East Dorset cemetery. I had the Bible restored in the early 1980s as it was in a very worn condition. Pauline and, I on passing through Vermont in the 1980s, saw the original church records and have a list of McBrides and McDevitts who are buried in and around East Dorset. None of the information matches any of the dates that I have from the Bible.
My uncle Frank McBride allegedly was badly beaten in some type of gang related trouble. Irish gangs were prevalent around the turn of the century in New York City. Frank died on November 15, 1911 from complications following that attack. My father was then sent to Vermont to keep him out of trouble. While there, he worked on the family farm and possibly in the marble quarries until the 1920s. Before returning to New York, I believe he lived in Pittsfield, MA, and married a woman there. When he returned, he lived in the Bronx with his mothers brother, Gustav Koch, and the Straehl family. He was eventually divorced and married my mother, Helen Kothe, on November 23, 1935, in Old Tappan, NY. Her father was Henry Kothe, who was married to Sarah Ann Clohessy, my fathers aunt. It would seem that Susan and Henry McManus might have left Vermont and moved to New York City where work was more easily obtained.
If you study the script and the ink colors in the Bible, you will notice that the initial writing on the marriage certificate at the front of the records section was written by two different people and with different colored ink. If you study the writing on the birth records pages, you will notice that the beginning entry is Susan McDevitt in green ink and the two twin babies entry are the same handwriting, regardless of color. The next three entries, Sarah McManus, Francis McBride and Walter McBride are the same handwriting. The next four entries are again different writing. The last entry of Gerard and Alice Clohessy, again someone different, probably Sarah (McManus) Clohessy.
The only clue could be found in the death entries where there are eleven entries with the first one being grandmother McBride (died on June 20, 1896). Was this the mother of Neil McBride? Neil was born about 1849 so his mother could have been born about 1829, making her 67 at the time of her death. Only speculation on my part!
The Bible was printed in Philadelphia from the stereotype plates of Field Lucas Jr., Baltimore, MD, Pressors John E. Potter @ Company Philadelphia 614, 617 Sansom Street. The only number written in the Bible is in pencil on the first page and is 4298. The front cover has an imprint on the bottom, to Susan McBride and the back cover has an imprint from her parents. Alice told me before she passed away that she and Gerard were not allowed to touch the Bible.
If anyone has different information or ideas about the history, please feel free to express your opinions and write them down and send them to me. I will incorporate them into our history.
Michael Henry McBride
Return to home page