Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Devines of Portland Maine

There were many Devine (Duibhin) families living in the Portland Maine area during the 19th and 20th centuries, and are all buried at Calvary Cemetery in South Portland.  This post will attempt to assemble them in some manner, for the purpose of sharing research with my Devine cousins.  Each family is listed separately below, and I have yet to find a proven link between any of them, but at the bottom of the page I'll attempt a few guesses.

The first seven families come from County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, as apparently do #10 and #14...

1.  James Devine (1828-1864) was born in County Tyrone to Bernard Devine (1784-1864) and his wife Margaret (Bernard is called "Bernard the Elder" here).  James arrived in 1847, married Ellen Norris, and had four children:  Catherine, Edward, Margaret and John.  John married my great grand aunt Elizabeth Leonard, daughter to Mathew Leonard of the Burrow of Portraine, County Dublin.  James died rather young, of consumption. His brother, Bernard Devine, Jr., married Susanna McGlinchey, of County Derry - part of the Portland McGlinchey clan that had a flourishing illegal liquor trade in Portland headed up by her own brother James.

2.  Hugh P. Devine (1842-1912) was born in County Tyrone, according to trees on Ancestry.  His parents were John Devine & Nancy Ward.  Hugh worked as a plasterer, and married Mary A. Feeney of Ireland (1849-1922), and had seven children:  John, Mary (who died at age 20 of liver cancer), William (who moved to Augusta), Margaret, George (who moved to Newcastle), Catherine and Francis (who moved to Cohasset, MA).  They lived on 92 Sheridan Street, in Portland's Munjoy Hill district.  This family is also buried at Calvary Cemetery, South Portland, although several of them had settled in Massachusetts.

3.  Bernard Devine (1847-1914) was born in County Tyrone (according to his naturalization record) to tenant farmer Patrick Devine and his wife Bridget Hegarty.  He emigrated to Portland in June of 1867 and worked as a merchant and a teamster.  I have to believe that he's some relation to James above, whose father and brother were also named Bernard.  Upon arrival, he stayed with the O'Connor family, and soon married Bridget Maney, and lived at 280 State Street, near St. Dominic's.  They had five children.  Only their youngest child, John James Devine (1886-1954), married.  John fought in WWI, and he later moved to South Portland with his wife Eulalia.  They had four sons, and at least eight grandchildren.  Several descendants remain in the Greater Portland area.

4.  Cornelius Devine (1827-1881) was born in County Tyrone (according to his naturalization record) and arrived in Portland in April of 1847.  He worked was a stonemason and lived on 3 Bond Street in Portland.  He and his wife Mary had seven children.  He fought in the Civil War, Company G, Cavalry.  For the 1870 Census, Mary and one of their children James were living in the City Alms House.  This particular family is hard to track, so I don't know if there were any descendants past the seven kids.  In 1865, Cornelius sold a house lot on Salem Lane in the West End to my great uncle, Thomas D. Leonard.  Now, Thomas' niece, Elizabeth Leonard had married James Devine (#1 above) about 20 years prior to this land sale.  I wonder if there was an established and known connection between these two Devines from Tyrone?

5.  Joseph Devine (1870-1950) arrived in Maine in 1889.  He worked as a bricklayer, and was the son of James Devine and Mary Glass of Ballinamallaght, County Tyrone Ireland.  According to some records, he came to Portland with siblings Catherine (who married a Patrick Devine - see #10 below) and John.  He married Bridget Slane in 1892, and had five children (John F., Joseph M., James Edward, Mary C., and young Margaret who died at age 3). None of them had any children to my knowledge, but there is an infant Mary A. Devine buried here, who died in 1998.  I wonder what her connection was.


6.  George Devine (1834-1863) was born in County Tyrone.  He migrated to Portland in April of  1851, and then married Mary Ann McFarland in 1857.  He worked as a marble polisher and stone cutter.  George fought in the Civil War (Co. G, 5th Maine Infantry), and was wounded and captured at the Battle of the Wilderness in May 1864.  He died of dysentery in a POW camp in Georgia (a common affliction).  George and Mary Ann had two sons, James and Peter, just before George died at the young age of 29.  Only James married (according to his death record), not sure if he had kids.  Mary was present on the 1880 census living next door to Joseph Devine (#5 above).  I wonder if there was a known relation.  George is one of almost 13,000 individuals buried at the Andersonville National Cemetery in Georgia, and I believe the gravesite featured below memorializes him, but also contains the grave for Mary Ann. 


7.  Michael J. Devine (1868-1908) was born in County Tyrone, son to Henry Devine.  He married Margaret Honan, and had one daughter, Bernadette, who died young.  It appears that Margaret may have had an additional child named Florence, prior to her marriage with Michael (see grave below).  No descendants remain.

8.  Patrick Devine (abt 1814-??) was born in Ireland and married a Catherine (1816-1875).  They had a son named James, who died at age 15 in Boston of pneumonia.  They lived on 12 Larch Street in Portland.  Catherine and young James are buried with James above (not sure of the relation, though).  Not sure what ever happened to Patrick.  No descendants.

9.  Coleman E. Devine (1870-1920) was born in County Galway to Martin Devine and Bridget Foley.  He emigrated to Portland in 1888.  He and his wife Bridget Joyce (who was from Northern Ireland) lived on 24 Sheridan Street and had at least ten children (several of them babies which died).  Coleman's brothers Brian and Martin Jr. emigrated to Portland in 1891.  This family lived briefly in Bangor (1910 Census).  Of the ten children of Coleman, only Helen Devine-Mitchell married and she had five children in Westwood, MA.

10.  Patrick Devine (1858-1932) was born in Ireland, arrived in Portland in 1883, and married Ellen Catherine Devine from Ballinamallaght Northern Ireland (daughter to James Devine and Mary Glass, and elder sister to Joseph Devine referenced above in #5, according to statements made by David Cronk on this thread in  Patrick and Catherine lived at 231 Danforth Street and had six children.  Patrick worked as an engine cleaner on the railroad.  When he died, Catherine and the children lived on Vesper Street, and later moved the family homestead to North Street.  Three of his six children married, and bore Patrick grandchildren, some of whom survived to adulthood, in addition to four children who died as infants, buried with Patrick's family.  Now, Patrick's gravesite is very close to Joseph's gravesite.  I haven't established a relationship, but they could be brothers.  If so, Patrick would also be from County Tyrone.  I have no idea who Mary A was (1895-1998), who is listed at the bottom of the gravestone below.  I can't find anyone in the family records who lived to be 103.  If she were a sibling to John, James and Joseph, why wouldn't she be in other records, and why wouldn't she be listed in birth order with the rest of them?

11.  George F. Devine was born in 1870 in Canada to Scottish parents.  He arrived in Portland in 1897.  He and his wife Alice had five children and lived on 469 Washington Avenue.

12.  Stephen Devine (1876-1898) was born in Ireland to tenant farmer Michael Devine and his wife Catherine Foley.  Stephen emigrated to Portland as a young adult, and worked as a longshoreman, but died of typhoid fever at age 22.  He is buried in Calvary Cemetery with an Ellen and a Frank, both of which were born around the same time as he, so they could be siblings.

13.  Stephen Devine (abt 1850-?) married a Sarah, and had two sons named Stephen, each of whom died as babies.  They also had a Sarah.  Not sure of this family's connection or origins.

14.  Richard Devine (1887-1972) was a bookkeeper from Stroanbrack, County Tyrone.  He was one of eleven children born to Bernard "Barney" Devine of Stroanbrack.  He left Ireland for the USA to find a better life, like so many others, and arrived in Portland in 1910, where he went to work for the Burrows Corp at 70 Free Street, where he worked until he went in the US Army in 1918, not long after his first wife Annie had passed from Spanish Flu.  They had wed in 1912, she having been a neighbor back in Ireland, born to Felix Devine of Ballinamallaght (close to Stroanbrack, but no known close relation).  In 1920, Richard remarried to Rose DeCoste, and had two daughters, Helen and Ruth.  He continued working at Burrows Corp as a foreman, after his discharge from the Army.


As for the first seven families:  James (#1 above), Cornelius (#4 above), George (#6 above), Hugh (#2 above)'s father John, Michael (#7 above)'s father Henry, Joseph (#5 above)'s father James, and Bernard (#3 above)'s father Patrick I believe could all be brothers from County Tyrone, and that Bernard the Elder is father to all of them.  They all have proven links to County Tyrone, based on their naturalization records.  I also wonder about #14 having a father also named Bernard from Tyrone.  He may be linked to Bernard the Elder as well.  #8, #10, and #12 were all born in "Ireland" prior to 1922 when N. Ireland was separated, so they could also be connected to these families, and such proof could be obtained by digging through more Naturalization records.

One thing I find intriguing is the very low birth rate of these families.  It appears that only 20% of all of the descendants of the above discussed Devines ever married.

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