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Carlons intro | part 1 | part 2

Aside from the tintype on the prior page, this is the only portrait I've found of Margaret Egan. Taken on the west side of Manhattan, it shows a much younger woman than the one in the 1880s photo. I wouldn't have identified her were it not for the pencil marking on the back: "EGAN - FAGAN." My best guess is that it was taken soon after her arrival in the country ( presumably 1873-74).

To date I've found no record of Matthew Fagan and Margaret Egan's marriage, but their first child, Edward Patrick, was born Jun 14, 1880 and later baptized at St. Stephen's on East 28th Street. This Edward, named after Matthew's father, died before Anna's birth in February 1882. Three Egan Godfathers and one Egan Godmother were named on the children's baptismal certificates, so I assume Margaret migrated with family. No information has surfaced to date on their exact relationship or county of origin, but there are a few avenues of research I've not taken yet.

Margaret's death certificate tells us she was born in Ireland to Thomas and Winifred Egan and immigrated to New York 26 years before her death at the age of 47. Death occurred at 8:00am on January 2, 1900. There was no record of prior medical care, which suggests that it was unexpected. The coroner's assistant entered as cause of death: "fatty degeneration of the heart".
A 1.25" x 1.75" paper-based albumen print glued to 2.25" x 3.1" linen textured studio mount. Embossed on front: Adams Studios, 6th Ave. between 21st and 22nd Streets, New York (Manhattan). Like the shop photo below, it's faded to a pale ochre. Electronic enhancement of contrast was required to make the image visible.

click for higher resolution
Unenhanced, hi-resolution image of shop
That's Matthew Fagan, third from the left, hand on hip, standing in front of his blacksmith shop on Jackson Ave in the Hunters Point section of Long Island City, N.Y. In city directory listings of the time, I've found two shops in Matthew's name.

33 JACKSON   Starting some time between 1889/92 and until at least 1904 he was listed at 33 Jackson av. Estimating Matthew's age in the photo, I would guess it shows 33 Jackson during the early 1890s, at about age 40. He appeared old for his age in later photos.

Prior to 1890, 33 Jackson was already a blacksmith shop but under the name of John J. Wright. Perhaps Matthew bought the business from Wright or worked for him.

104 JACKSON   Family legend says Matthew's shop was destroyed during a fire that wiped out that area of L.I.City. I haven't found any reference to this tragedy, but it would explain why he relocated the shop up the street at 104 Jackson Ave around 1904 or 1905. It was still there when the 1912 Queens City Directory was published.

The business directories of the 1890s show that the first blocks of Jackson Avenue were the site of many of Long Island City's blacksmith shops and businesses. In fact this intersection, near the ferry dock to Manhattan and the LIRR station, was the main Queens hub.

After Matthew's death, his son Thomas Francis would become president of George J. Ryan's Real Estate & Insurance firm at 46 Jackson Ave, (later 10-64) very close to where his father had worked. These buildings no longer exist.

It's comforting to think the horse-shoeing business was kind enough to Matthew to allow him to finish out his life plying a trade that was not yet obsolete.

Matthew had his will drawn up in 1912 and was retired from business when questioned by the New York State Census of June 1915. His death occurred on June 10, 1918 at Anna's apartment in Manhattan after a 16 month period of illness.

Images of Matthew's obituary and an ad for his son's business (40k total)
TECH NOTES: A paper-based albumun print, 5" x 8". Sharply detailed, but faded to a pale ochre tone, damaged and mounted on acidic cardboard. The tonal range of the scanned image you see here has been considerably enhanced in the computer.
front yard pic - click for hi-res closeup HUNTERS POINT
This is from a series of five undated snapshots of Matthew Fagan and his younger daughter Mary (known as Mamie) in front of what may have been their home in the Hunters Point section of Long Island City in Queens.

He was listed at 123 11th Street (now 45th Road) in 1910 and 1912. Thomas also reported that address at the time of his June 1911 marriage to Agnes Flanagan.

The next family address comes from Anna's July 1915 marriage certificate: 111 12th Street (now 45th Street)

The house in the photo could be either of these, but Matthew's elderly appearance suggests it was the later address. To see a more detailed closeup of Matthew and Mary (46k) click on the image. Use your [BACK] button to return to this place.

Mamie Fagan was physically and mentally handicapped, though not incapacitated. She was able to read and write, but was unable to support herself. When their mother Margaret died on Jan 2, 1900, 17 year old Anna took responsibility for 10 year old Mamie, and as evidenced by many photos, included her in social activities throughout her life.

Except possibly for the short period Anna lived in Manhattan, I believe Mamie lived with Anna all her life.

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