30 November 1999

To: All our Genealogy Correspondents.

Subject: Maysville, KY Research

During Thanksgiving week Bonnie and I visited with her family in middle Tennesse and then took a side trip to Maysville, KY where my great-grandfather Patrick Ryan and family first immigrated to America in the 1840's. We were fascinated with what we found.

In our research we learned several things. We had always assumed that my great-grandfather, Patrick Ryan, and his brother Michael had been farmers in the Maysville area, since they had been farmers in Ireland, as had the rest of the family, and had hoped to find the "family farm". We were unable to locate any such farm. But when we stop to think about the situation it is obvious that they did not have money to buy any land; they were 'famine-Irish'. When the family left Ireland they had to leave their farm to the church as there was no one to buy the 44 acres there.

Thus Michael, who came first in 1843, and Patrick, who came via the ship Hope of Luxbury in passage from Liverpool to New Orleans in 1846, would have had to seek employment to raise any funds for land.

In the 1850 Census records we found Patrick and Michael living in the house of one Michel (sic) Goest, and they were listed as Pike Makers! (1850,Dist 2, Page 0134) Working as road gangs would have been a profitable venture. There was extensive road building around that time and we have subsequently discovered that President Andrew Jackson vetoed the Maysville Road Bill in the 1840's, claiming that it would only benefit Kentucky. We will continue to research this issue.

We also know that they filed for land patents in Lansing, Iowa in 1851. We can assume they were accumulating funds and anticipated the move to Iowa even then.

We also found my, then future, great-grandmother, Margaret Guider and her two brothers, James and John living with one Elijah Loyd who was listed as a farmer and the brothers as farm hands. Our family history shows that Patrick and Margaret were married 13-Feb-1853 in Cincinnatti, and we assume on their way to Lansing, although there are records of the Guiders in Maysville as late as 1855. John Guider married Patrick's sister Margaret and James Guider married Bridget Madden of Louisville, KY in 1869. Our Michael Ryan married Anne Hayes (date unknown) and possibly in Kentucky, in as much as Anne was known to be a seamstress on a plantation in Kentucky. The Guiders emigrated in 1848.

Patrick's sister Ellen Ryan was married to Malachy "Lant" Power in Ireland and had one son, James, born there. The next 3 children were born in Kentucky. In the Marriage and Birth registry of St. Patrick's Church we found the baptismal (or christening) record of Margaret Power on 27-Dec-1853, and the sponsors were Terenty (illegible but possibly Latin for Terrence) Mackey and Bridgetta Collins. We could not find that of Nicholas (born earlier) or Mary (born later). The church records were hand written and traditionally in Latin and some names are barely discrernable.

We also found the Baptismal record of Bredgillian (? Illegible, possibly also Bridget?), daughter of Bridget Ryan (their other sister) and Timothy Collins on 14-Sep-1853, sponsors Thomas Condon and Maria Hayes (who must have certainly been related to Anne Hayes). We also found another Baptismal record of a daughter of the same illegible name to John Maher and Bridget Shea on 26-Oct-1854 at which Pat Ryan and Maria Shea were sponsors.

And further, we called my brother and sister-in-law who reminded us of Patrick's naturalization papers; he filed his declaration on 20-Aug-1849 in the Mason County Circuit Court and received his naturalization on 25-Oct-1852, also in Mason County.

Having read what we could find of Maysville's history, we now believe we can also answer the question of why they came to Mason County. In the early 1800's it appears that Maysville was the principal gateway for those coming down the Ohio river into the Kentucky territory. In the 1840's it appears to have been a "boom-town" and a most likely place for two young Irish boys to earn a living and save their money for a farm of their own. The principle crop at that time was hemp, and there were several rope works there as well as an iron foundry and other sundry manufacturing facilities.

Having collected these "pearls" we are now more anxious than ever to discover as much as possible about the activities of our ancestors and the times they lived in. Maybe there would be some record of the Goest and/or Loyd families. We had such a short time available to us that we didn't have time to research any of the other records or newspaper accounts of that time.

We also established several contacts with local genealogists, including Molly Kendall, Edith Ryan, and Mae (nee Ryan) Mahler. We are attempting to elicit additional local research to find what we can of the life and times of the Ryan's, Guider's and others. We will keep you posted on our progress.


Jim & Bonnie Ryan

P.S. .aside to Michelle, John-John, Victor, and Mike - this is your Great-Great Grandfather Patrick Ryan and his family, who subsequently settled in Lansing, Iowa.