Look up Deedy in Websters Dictionary and you will see the following definition - \Deed"y\, a. Industrious; active. [R.] --Cowper. But to me Deedy is simply my last name and not a very common one at that. My Father always said "find yourself in a strange city? Open a phone book, find a Deedy and give them a call - chances are they are a relative." So, for all the Deedy's out there hello and welcome.

A mayoral mystery

Recently, a Sullivan cousin (Mary Elizabeth Sullivan Dreger) sent me a scan of an old photo that has been in her family for years. The photo is of Mary's grandfather (my great-grandfather) patrolman Maurice Sullivan. Standing next to him, Mary had been told, is the Mayor of Boston - James Michael Curley.

Looking at the photo, I assume it was taken during Curley's first term as mayor. But the man in this photo looks too old and I can't find any images of James Michael Curley with a mustache. Could this instead be a photo of a different Boston Mayor - George Albee Hibbard (served from 1908 - 1910)?

Digging into the latest box of Sullivan family photos my parents dropped off at my house, I found this image which has marked on the back:
Brother Maurice going off to war. Hand shake by Mayor James Michael Curley. - Helen S. Sullivan
This photo does indeed look like James Michael Curley from his first term (1914 - 1918).

Unfortunately this second photo is not marked with the date. But I did find Maurice A. Sullivan's WWI draft card from 1917. So this photo was taken sometime in 1917 or 1918.

So what do you think? Is the first photo Mayor Curley? To be fair, he is squinting into the sun, which could be making him look older than he should be. Any other guesses on who the man in the first photo could be?

- Boston Globe May 30, 1910 article about death of Ex-Mayor George Albee Hibbard


Three McDonough siblings pictured with their spouses?

Dianne Dowd sent along another photo from her collection today. The photo appears to be from the 1890's and pictured may be Bartholomew McDonough, Michael Brennan, and Martin McDonough. Seated in front of the three men are likely their wives - Margaret Fay, Bridget McDonough, and Maria Simmonds.

While the photo is not marked, Dianne made the identification after looking at other known photos. I have posted one of Dianne & Tom Dowd's photos of Bartholomew and the shorter man in this photo does resemble him.

Thank you again Dianne & Tom for sharing another great old photo!

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Liberty Ship Lawrence T. Sullivan

My Great-uncle Lawrence T. Sullivan was serving on a merchant marine vessel in 1942 when it was struck by a German U-boat and he was lost at sea. In 1945 a Liberty ship was dedicated in his honor. For the dedication his Mother, surviving 8 siblings and their families and friends gathered for the ceremony. The picture below (click to view larger) was taken at the shipyard and I have numbered the group (36 people) and with the help of various family members managed to put names next to most of the numbers.

I am hoping someone visiting the blog might be able to help fill-in the missing names (or provide corrections if needed) and finish identifying everyone in the photo.For those curious about the fate of the Liberty ship named after Lawrence T. Sullivan - it was scraped in 1971 - see image below for its history (click to view larger).


Edwin L. Thompson


Edwin L. Thompson, long time resident of Briarcliff Manor, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his immediate family on December 30th.

Edwin, who was known to all his family and friends as Ted, was born in NYC and grew up in Larchmont, NY, the son of Leslie E. Thompson of NYC and Agnes McDonough Thompson of Worcester, Mass. He is survived by his loving wife of 22 yrs, Helen Murtha Thompson, his brother Leslie E. and his wife Dee Thompson of Cottonwood Az.; his son Robert L. Thompson of Medford, Mass, daughter Rosemary Thompson of Deposit, NY, Step-son Thomas K. Murtha of Bellmore, NY and grandson Michael J. Katen of Deposit, NY. His loving family includes numerous nieces, nephews, sisters and brothers-in-law. Ted was pre-deceased by brothers John L. Thompson of Cohasset, Mass., Bill Thompson of New Rochelle, NY. and first wife Martha Hughes Thompson.

Ted attended Iona Prep in New Rochelle and Cranwell Prep in Mass. He then joined the US Army and served as a corporal in the Pacific in the 624th Field Artillery unit. After Military Service he graduated from Holy Cross College in Worchester, Mass. His career in the Supermarket industry included Personnel manager for A& P food stores and Director of Labor Relations with Gristede's Supermarkets, negotiating multiple contracts during his years of service.

As a retiree Ted worked as a sales representative in the Real Estate Industry for Rae Molinelli and HoulihanLawrence in Briarcliff. Ted was a loyal member of St. Theresa's parish in Briarcliff, serving as an usher in his early years. He enjoyed many rounds of golf with friends and family as a member of Pleasantville Golf Club and then Highlands Golf Club. He was an enthusiastic Yankee fan and will be remembered as a man of good cheer with a winning smile.

Visitation will be at Waterbury and Kelly Funeral Home of Briarcliff Manor on Sunday, Jan. 3rd from 3-7pm. The funeral will be at St. Theresa's Church on Pleasantville Rd. in Briarcliff at 10am Monday, Jan 4th. In Lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the National Kidney Foundation at their website: Waterbury & Kelly of Briarcliff Manor 1300 Pleasantville Road Briarcliff Manor, N.Y10510 914-941-0838 914-941-0838

Thank you to Patty Quattrochio for sending this notice to me. My condolences to Ted's family and friends.


Marie McDonough Hayes horrible elevator accident

Dianne & Tom Dowd recently visited the Worcester Public Library in search of some death notices for their family research when they happened across the Worcester Telegram January 8, 1928 front page story: Miss Marie McDonough, 18, and companion, plunge four stories in elevator shaft at New Rochelle.

The article recounts how Marie McDonough (later Hayes) had a horrible accident her freshman year at college. Marie was the daughter of Patrick McDonough (the only son of Thomas & Mary's 10 children). While Marie survived the fall, finished college (albeit at a different school) married, had children, and lived a long life - she did bear the physical scars of her accident.

Unfortunately, her friend, Frances Covey, was not as lucky as we learn in the January 12, 1928 Massina Observer article: Massena girl killed in plunge down shaft

- Lawsuit articles after the accident


Edward T. Deedy (1925 - 2009)

He was the second son born to John G. and Grace (McDonough) Deedy. Named for his beloved grandfather, he was a happy addition to the house on Wabash Ave. A bright and studious boy, young Ed attended St. John's High School and graduated in June 1943.

At age 19, he attempted to join the Navy, but his admission was not guaranteed because at the time Ed weighed 110 pounds and the minimum weight for acceptance was 112. While waiting in line for his admission physical, Ed ate bananas and drank water in an attempt to gain weight. Once in front of the Navy physician, the scale revealed Ed's attempt to reach the minimum weight had failed. However, the doctor was convinced by Ed that he would be a valuable addition to the Navy and could continue to eat and drink to reach his minimum. Ultimitely he was accepted by the Navy (click on photo above to see just how skinny Ed was!). He was then transferred to the Marines who obtained all of their corps men (medics) from the Navy. While in the Marine Corps, he was trained as a pharmacist, and was ultimately stationed in the Southwest Pacific. After the war he returned to Worcester and attended Holy Cross College.

In 1949 Ed graduated from Holy Cross and married his childhood sweetheart Rosemary Mulhern. The pair settled in Worcester and were soon joined by their children Edward, Kevin, Rosemary, Diane, and Brian.

He was a warm and outgoing person, a natural for his career as a salesman, a Worcester city councilor, and finally as a real estate agent. Ed and Rosemary ultimately retired to their summer home on Cape Cod. Ed's cherished Rosemary passed away in 2007. The pair had been married for 58 years.

On December 12, 2009 Edward T. Deedy quietly passed away.

The funeral will be held on Tuesday, December 15 from Doane Beal & Ames Funeral Home, 260 Main Street., West Harwich with calling hours from 9-10:30 AM in the funeral home followed immediately by an 11 AM Mass in the Holy Trinity Church, Route 28, West Harwich. Interment will be in the Holy Trinity Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Scholarship Fund, St. John’s High School, 378 Main St., Shrewsbury, MA 01545.

- Worcester Council Candidate Articles - Edward T. Deedy

- Obituary from Callahan & Fay Brothers Funeral Home site (PDF)
- Worcester Telegram Obituary (PDF)
- Link to Callahan & Fay Edward T Deedy Condolence Book.


Edge of Darkness

The Mel Gibson thriller Edge of Darkness movie trailer has finally been released. When the movie was filming in Boston a request was sent out for old police photos to dress the set of the movie police station. We contributed images of Srgt. Maurice Sullivan - so somewhere in this film are scenes shot within a precinct house and on the wall are images of my ancestor. Can't wait to see the movie and see if I can spot him in the background...

The movie is set to be released in January.





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