Edward Perry was born in Kilboy, Tipperary and would have moved to Liscannor, County Clare in the 1840s. How he ended up there is uncertain, but it is possible that he met his wife, Eliza Coffey, through her father, Francis Coffey, who travelled all over the country as a land surveyor. The marriage registers for Liscannor at this time have not survived, but despite Edward's Protestant background it is likely that they married in the local Catholic church as that is where their children were baptised. Eliza came from an old Catholic Clare family and her brother, James, was a priest.
Edward and Eliza Perry had a lot of children.
- JOHN was born in 1846 and was the only one that stayed in Clare. His descendants were still there until the 1960s, when the last of the Liscannor Perrys died.
- JAMES was the second child (of whom more later).
- The next two were called FRANCIS, born in 1849 and 1851. No burial records survive for the parish, but it is likely that the elder Francis died shortly before the birth of the younger.
- The eldest daughter, SUSAN, was born in 1853. She emigrated to America (Boston, Massachusetts) and married Robert Faulkner , the son if Irish immigrants there. She was still alive on the 1930 census, when she was living in Manhattan, New York with her 2 daughters, Elizabeth Henderson (53) and Mary Hereshoff (52). Elizabeth Henderson was the widow of a wealthy Texan and some of James’ children contested her will in the 1960s.
- MARY (born 1858) is the next child, and she joined her sister Susan in Boston in 1880. She went on to marry an Englishman, William Roberts.
- The next child, EDWARD, was born in 1860. He also immigrated to America and is seen in various census returns as a liquor dealer in San Francisco, California. His wife, Margaret Flanagan, was also Irish, although they married in the States.
- The next son, PATRICK Perry also went to America and is believed to have lived in California and died in 1916.
- The youngest son, HENRY was born in 1865. Sadly, he died after only a few days, shortly after his mother.
JAMES PERRY (born 1848), Edward and Eliza’s second son, went to Dublin in 1875 and joined the Dublin Metropolitan Police, after being recommended to the force by Sir Colm Loughlin MP for County Clare. He had previously been in the Royal Irish Constabulary. James had a successful career in the police and was made an Inspector in 1890. His career was cut short by illness in 1899 and he died in Monasterevin, Kildare in August of that year. Although his death certificate and obituaries say that he was 48, he probably lied about his age to avoid restrictions in joining the police force. James had married a girl from Monasterevin in 1880; Sarah Caffery. James’ father, Edward, visited them in Kildare and Dublin in the summer of 1883, during which time he also became acquainted with James’ parents in law, Edward and Catherine Caffery. It seems from letters written by Mary Roberts in America to Mrs Caffery that the whole extended family kept in touch with each other, despite the distance between them. James and Sarah had many children, including Kathleen (1885), James (1886), Edward (1888), Francis (1889), Elizabeth (1890), Joseph (1892), Patrick (1893), Michael Christopher (1895) and Sarah (1899). They lived in Rathmines, Dublin, where James was based as a police officer. Sadly, Sarah Perry died shortly after her husband, leaving a young and large family behind. The daughters went to live in Monasterevin with their mother’s family (where they are still remembered by cousins today) and the boys were sent to the orphanages in Glasnevin and Marino. Many of the family are buried in the family plots in Glasnevin and Deans Grange cemeteries.
Patrick Perry, the second youngest son, stayed in Dublin and married Mary Tobin, who was born in Dublin but whose parents originally came from Gorey, Wexford. Their eldest son, Gerard James was born 9 months to the day after their wedding, in Dublin in 1924. The other children in the family were Paul, Patrick, Dolorus, Rubina, Marie and Dorothy , who died as a young child. They lived firstly in a small terraced house on the north side of Dublin, moving to Terenure on the south side when the family grew larger. Gerard joined the army in Belfast during World War II, after lying about his age as his grandfather had before him. He was posted near Grantham, Lincolnshire, where he met his future wife. He fought at Arnhem and was captured, spending several months in the Belsen prisoners complex. After being released, he married and stayed in Lincolnshire, where 14 children were born.
Researched and written by Vicki Perry. Please credit if re-used.