The Hayes Family History Site

Including Members Of The Hayes, Tierney, Lewis, Beattie, Sheehan, Yerks, Condos, Smith and Other Families

Archive for the 'Surname: Tierney' Category

Meet John Lawrence Tierney

October 6, 2010

It is amazing how things can suddenly seem so clear after relaxing your mind and giving yourself some time away from a problem. Such is the case with a photograph I found in the inherited collection of Virginia Tierney Bishop.

The first time I went through Virginia’s photos, I had dismissed the man in the photo below as being a member of her mother’s family from down south. On the back, the inscription reads “A corner in the parlor.” Virginia’s collection has lots of unlabeled photographs that clearly depict a southern family. So this one just got grouped in with the others.

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This article was published in the Newtown Register on Thursday, February 9, 1911. According to this brief article, on Saturday, Jan 28, 1911 there was a surprise birthday party for Reginald W Parrett. Reginald was married to Irene Tierney. Irene is a daughter of Mary Jane Kinneary and Thomas W Tierney. They lived at 9 Chestnut Street in Corona, Queens. Corona is a dense neighborhood in the former Township of Newtown in the New York City borough of Queens. It is neighbored by Flushing to the east, Jackson Heights to the west, Forest Hills and Rego Park to the south, Elmhurst to the southwest, and East Elmhurst to the north.

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The following article was published on November 12, 1952 in The Brooklyn Eagle.  It tells the story of Raymond A Tierney Jr sterlings high school sports experience and the sports successes of numerous family members.  The article mentions that Raymond is the grandson of Police Inspector Frank A. Tierney.  Grandfather Frank was one of the outstanding rowers with the Dauntless on the Harlem River and won numerous titles.

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The other day I found two photographs that seem to link two branches of the Tierney family together. The pictures come from the collection of Frank Noel and May (Berry) Tierney who lived in Larchmont, New York.  Frank Noel Tierney  and Raymond A Tierney were first cousins, so it makes sense that they new of each other, but these are the first photographs connecting the two  families.

Raymond Tierney and Family with Frank, Virginia and May

"Raymond Tierney and Family with Frank, Virginia and May"

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Several weeks ago, I received a phone call from Lynn Williams in response to a letter I had sent her, telling her that I believed we were cousins through the Tierney branch of our family tree.  She confirmed that she was the granddaughter of Irene Tierney.  Irene is the daughter of Thomas W. Tierney.  Thomas W. Tierney is the brother of my great grandfather James F. Tierney.  That makes us second cousins, once removed.

We had a wonderful conversation, exchanging stories of what we knew of the Tierney’s.  Then she dropped the bomb. She has a picture of her great grandfather… AND HIS FATHER!  “His Father” is James Tierney (b. 1835 in Ireland, d. Feb 1888 in Manhattan) and is our shared relative.

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Thanks to Carolyn Gibbons of North Carolina, a ROAGK volunteer who found this obituary for me.

Edward Schnedier, 82, died Saturday.  Funeral services will be conducted at 11 a.m. Monday at Emmanuel Episcopal Church by the Rev. Martin Caldwell.  Burial will be in the old Bethesda Cemetery.

Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Eleanor Tierney Schneider; one daughter, Mrs. Eleanore Dorsett of Fayetteville; and two grandchildren.

And thanks ROAGK volunteer Phil Bible who found Richard Curry, who lives in the area of Bethesda Cemetery for the picture of the grave and posting it on

Grave of Edward Schneider and Eleanor V (Tierney) Schneider

Several weeks ago I visited the final resting place of Mary Tierney, my Great-Great Grandmother.  After receiving her Death Certificate from the New York City Archives, I was able to determine that she was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Queens, New York. Unfortunately when I arrived, I found her plot, but there was no gravestone.  I was hoping that there would be a gravestone with markings to fill me in on some missing pieces of the Tierney clan puzzle.

So in desperation, I requested an Internment report from Calvary Cemetery.  It was a bit expensive, but I think well worth it. Much to my surprise, I received it in just two weeks time. So, the Internment report solved several Tierney mysteries for me.

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The Colwell – Tierney Link

December 20, 2008

When I first took over the family genealogy project from my Uncle Lloyd Lewis, there was one page of his notes that I ignored for some time because the notes he had on the names were scarce.

On the top of one page, he wrote the name Kate Sproul Colwell..  Next to it were the names; Lou Colwell Gent, Mary Lou Gent and John Gent.  Now, the name Spoul was familiar to me.  It happens to be the maiden name of my great, great grandmother, Mary Sproul Tierney (b. abt 1829 in Ireland), who married James Tierney (b. abt 1826 in Ireland).  I have seen several variations of the Spoul name including Sproul, Sproule and Sproull.

So, based on my Uncles notes, I assumed that Kate Sproul Colwell, is the sister of Mary Sproul, wife of James Tierney.  Several weeks ago, I decided to investigate this branch of the family a little more in-depth.  So, my first step was to talk to my Mom.  She remembers a Lou Gent being referred to as “Cousin Lou”.   She was a school teacher in New York City.  So with that small amount of information I was able to find Lou Gent in the 1930 census records.  She was married to a Harold G Gent and had twins; John and Mary Lou.  In this census, her occupation is listed as a “teacher”.  So at least I know I found the right Lou Gent.

Now that I found Lou, the rest of the family was fairly easy to find, working backwards.  Lou was the daughter of Louise and John S. Colwell. So obviously my next step was to pull the death certificate of John S. Colwell.  It was fairly easy to find, but here is where my trouble began.  It lists his parents as Catherine Tierney and Michael Colwell.  WOW.  My first reaction was to assume that this was a mistake and that the informant had taken the married name of Catherine’s sister and used it.  I’ve seen lots of mistakes like this on death certificates before.

So Michael Colwell (b. abt 1832 in Ireland) and Catherine (b. abt 1826 in Ireland) had six other children besides John S. Colwell.  I haven’t bothered researching all of them yet as I am still looking for resolution of Catherine’s maiden name. I soon found Catherine Colwell’s death certificate at the New York City Archives.  Awesome!  Now I can finally put things to rest.  Wait a minute, not so fast.   It lists her father as “Frank Tierney” and her mother as “Unable to state”.  Now I’m really confused.  I know there was a Frank who was the son of my gr, gr grandfather.  Could this also be a mix up?  Could Frank be the fathr of James and Catherine Tierney?

Based on her death certificate I was able to determine that Catherine was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Flushing, Queens, not to far from where Mary Sproul Tierney is buried.  James could be there too, but I have not yet confirmed it with any type of record.

The Colwell Grace At Calvary Cemetery in Queens

So, to try to put this issue to bed, I decided to pull the death certificate of one of Catherine and Michael Coldwell’s other children to see if it can give me a last name of Catherine.  His name was Thomas W. Colwell.  I just received it today.    It lists his mothers name as “CATHERINE TIERNEY”


Pending some further investigation, it does appear that instead of Catherine being the sister of Mary Sproul, she is the sister of James Tierney, my gr, gr, grandfather.  Since James Tierney died almost two centuries before Mary Sproul Tierney, it is conceivable that relatives, who passed information onto Lloyd may have had their facts a little mixed up. They may have thought Catherine was related to Mary because James had not been around for so long.  Who knows?  Whatever the reason, all evidence now is pointing to Catherine Colwell being a Tierney.  So it appears that all the Colwell’s and Gent’s are cousins through the Tierney side of our family.  I know there are members of those families out there.  Now I just have to find them.

The Hayes Branch Cemetery Headstone Photo Album contains pictures from various cemteries for the following surnames.

  • Lewis
  • Tierney
  • Beattie
  • Hayes
  • Hanley
  • Colwell
  • Gackstetter
  • Bishop
  • Graham
  • Hayes
  • Sheehan
Last Updated: December 7, 2008

CARNEY-Patricia A. (nee Tierney). On December 1, 2008. Devoted daughter of the late Honorable Judge Raymond A. Tierney. Beloved wife of the late Thomas. Loving mother of Patricia A. Dear sister of Raymond Tierney, Marie Anderson and the late Francis Tierney. Funeral Monday 8:30 A.M. from the MARINE PARK FUNERAL HOME, 3024 Quentin Road, Brooklyn. Funeral Scripture Service 9:30 A.M. at St. Thomas Aquinas R.C. Church. Interment St. John’s Cemetery. Visiting Saturday and Sunday 2-5 and 7-9 P.M.