The Finlay Family

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Separating Three Muddled Identities: Charles Donohoo, Charles Donohoo & Charles Donohoe

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This blog post is part of the Donohoo Descendancy Project. Charles Donohoo was a son of Francis T. and Rebecca (Wheatley) Donohoo, and a grandson of Patrick and Sarah Donohoo.


In the sparsely populated county of Nelson, Kentucky, two men named Charles Donohoo were born within 2-3 years of each other in the early 1840s. One of the Charles moved to nearby Washington County, Kentucky as an adult, where another man named Charles Donohoe had also moved from his homestate of Tennessee. Their identities have been crossed, confused and muddled through the years since. I have spent some time trying to separate them back out, and here I will present my theories and findings.

There were two different Donohoo family groups living in Nelson County during the 1800s. They were not related, at least as far back as my research has gone. The first group (not my ancestors) lived near New Hope, were farmers, and lived in the area at least as far back as the 1790s. The second group (my ancestors) moved into the Bardstown, Nelson County area in the 1815s from Maryland. They lived in or near the town and were craftsmen (shoemakers, plasterers, tavern owners, etc.) The two families did not interact that I have found. They are distinguishable through their locations (same county, but 16 miles apart), associations, and occupations.

There were two adult men named Charles Donohoo and Charles Donohoe who migrated from Nelson County, Kentucky, and Tennessee, respectively, to Washington County, Kentucky, in the 1870s. They are distinguishable by their marriages, children, and occupations.

Only one is part of my family tree. All three had to be researched to sort them out into the correct family groups.

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Charles Donohoo, #1 (not my relative): Born about 1841 in Nelson County, Kentucky, died in 1935 in Nelson County, Kentucky, son of John and Ellen (or Ann) (Edeline) Donohoo.

Charles is first found in the 1850 U.S. Census in Nelson County, Kentucky, with his parents (John and Ann) and five siblings. He is listed as age 6 [1]. He remains with his family through the 1860 U.S. Census: Nelson County, Kentucky with parents (John & Ann) and 5 siblings (age 15) [2]. On 12 January 1864, at age 22, Charles married 17 year old Mary Mahoney. He was a farmer by occupation [3, 4].

By 1880, Charles and Mary Donohoo live in Nelson County, Kentucky, with 8 children. Charles’ occupation is farmer [5]. In 1900, Charles is still a farmer in Nelson County, Kentucky, with wife Mary and 3 children living at home [6]. In 1910, he resides in Nelson County, Kentucky, with wife Mary (married 46 years) and one adult son, occupation farmer [7].

In 1920, Charles and Mary Donohoo are enumerated in New Hope, Nelson County, Kentucky. Charles’ occupation is farmer [8]. By 1930, Charles and Mary are living with son Lee and his family in Nelson County, Kentucky. Charles is listed without occupation [9]. In September of the same year of 1930, Mary died at the age of  84. She was buried in Holy Cross Cemetery in Marion County, Kentucky, which is just 5 miles east from the New Hope area where they lived [10]. Five years later, in 1935, Charles Donohoo dies in Nelson County. On his death certificate his parents are listed as John Donohoo and Ellen Edeline. Charles’ burial took place in the Holy Cross Cemetery near his wife [11].

Charles Donohoo, son of John Donohoo and Ellen/Ann (Edeline), consistently lived in the New Hope area of Nelson County, Kentucky. He was a farmer his entire life. He was married to Mary Mahoney and had eight children. He was buried in the nearby Holy Cross Cemetery, across the county line, but closer to his home area than the Bardstown cemeteries. This Charles Donohoo was not my ancestor or related to my Donohoo family.

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Charles Donohoo, #2 (my relative): Born about 1843, to Francis T. and Rebecca (Wheatley) Donohoo, died in 1909 in Durant, Oklahoma and buried in Washington County, Kentucky.

Charles was born about 1843 to Francis Thomas (F.T.) and Rebecca (Wheatley) Donohoo, in Bardstown, Nelson County, Kentucky. He is first found in the 1850 U.S. Census at age 7 with his parents F.T. and Rebecca, with 4 sisters and 1 brother [12]. He remains with his family through the 1860 U.S. Census: listed as Chas, age 18, with parents Frank and R Donohoo, with one brother, two sisters and a nephew [13].

On 15 April 1862, he enlisted as a private in the 6 Kentucky Cavalry, assigned to Company K. His compiled service record shows that he was present for active duty from 15 April 1862 to March 1865. (He was present in his unit in the army while the other Charles Donohoo was back in Nelson County, marrying Mary Mahoney in January 1864.) By 20 March 1865, he became ill with symptoms of syphillis and was sent for treatment to the hospital at Jeffersonville, Indiana, then moved to the hospital at Louisville, Kentucky by May. On his hospital card, his next of kin is reported as Father Frank, Bardstown, Ky post office, this confirming his family link to Frank and Rebecca Donohoo’s family. He was supposed to be mustered out and discharged at Louisville on 20 May 1865, however the record states that no discharge was furnished at that time. He was finally discharged out of Edgefield, Tennessee on 14 July 1865 [14].

Between 1865 and 1874, the whereabouts of Charles Donohoo are unknown.

On 26 July, 1874, Charles W. Donohoo married Matilda Nally in Washington County, Kentucky (17 miles southeast of Bardstown). They were married in the St Rose Roman Catholic Church, with witnesses John H. Dolan and Malonia Smith [15, 16]. The couple welcomed a daughter on 17 August 1875, Frances Rebecca Donohoo, in Springfield, Washington County, Kentucky [17].

By the 1880 U.S. Census, the family is living in Washington County, Kentucky. Charles appears in a household with his wife, Matilda (FM) and daughter (FR). He works as a painter [18]. In November of 1883, Charles (having served in the 6th Kentucky Cavalry) is listed on a military service pension application as an invalid [19].

On 5 March 1895, Charles and Matilda’s daughter Rebecca married Joseph Thompson in Washington County, Kentucky [20]. By the time of the 1900 U.S. Census, an index search for Washington County, and a page by page search of the Springfield, Pottsville and Fredrickton districts revealed no household for Charles Donohoo. However, Rebecca and Joe A. Thompson lived in Pottsville, Washington, Kentucky. They have two daughters and one son [21].

On 23 December 1901, Charles Donohoo married Rosa Dowling, a widow, in Washington County, Kentucky [22]. It can be assumed that Matilda (Nally) Donohoo died before this time. However, the cemetery record for her lists only a month of death (April) but not a year. She is buried in the Saint Rose Cemetery in Springfield, Washington, Kentucky [23].

The pension file card for Charles Donohoo, who served in the Kentucky Sixth Cavalry,  indicates that his widow, Rosaleane Donohoo, filed for pension benefits on 25 March 1909 [24]. A separate pension index card notes a death date of 22 February 1909 and place of Durant, Oklahoma [25]. The death place caused some confusion, as all other indications were that Charles and Rosa Donohoo still resided in Washington County, Kentucky. In fact, Charles Donohoo was buried in Saint Dominics Cemetery, Springfield, Washington, Kentucky, his headstone indicating “Charles Donohoo, Co. K., 6 Ky. Cav.” [26]. The mystery of Charles’ place of death was solved in his daughter’s obituary: ” After their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Thompson moved to East Texas, Ky., and from there to Durant, Indian territory, where they resided for a year.” His daughter and her family had moved to Durant, Oklahoma, where perhaps he was visiting when he died [27].

This Charles Donohoo, my relation, was a tricky case to solve. The thread that runs all through his life story as an adult was the fact that he served in Company K, of the Kentucky Sixth Cavalry. While he did not seem to leave very many records behind himself, thankfully, we pick up his threads through the records of his daughter and second wife.

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Charles Donohue, #3 (not my relative): born circa 1849 in Tennessee, both parents were born in Ireland, shows up in Washington County, Kentucky in 1870 Census.

The third Charles Donohue appears in the 1870 U.S. Census in Washington County, Kentucky, a farm laborer, born in Tennessee, both parents born Ireland [28]. On 9 January 1872, Charles Donohue married Armacinda or Armazinda O’Neil in Washington County, Kentucky [29, 30].

By the 1880 U.S. Census, this couple resides in Glenville, Washington, Kentucky. Charles is a farmer, born Tennessee, his parents born Ireland. His wife is Armazinda, with a two-year-old daughter named Nellie S. [31] On 18 October 1886, the couple welcomed a son, Gilbert Charles Donohue in Washington County, Kentucky [32]. Gilbert Charles Donohoe died on 16 January 1946 in Springfield, Washington, Kentucky [33, 34, 35].

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Conclusion:
Three men with the same name and similar ages lived within twenty miles of each other in Nelson and Washington Counties in Kentucky from the 1840s to the 1930s. While their identities have been crossed and confused, a careful examination of the documents they left behind shows a clear separation of origin, ooccupation, and family. They were most certainly three distinct men.

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Sources and Research Notes:


[1] Source Citation Year: 1850; Census Place: District 2, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: M432_215; Page: 348B; Image: 154 Source Information Ancestry.com. 1850 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: Seventh Census of the United States, 1850; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M432, 1009 rolls); Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29; National Archives, Washington, D.C.


Note on mother: The death certificate for Charles Donohoo states his parents to be John Donohoo and Ellen Edeline. I have found a marriage certificate in Nelson County for this couple. However, the woman listed in the 1850 and 1860 Census is called Ann, not Ellen. Since this is not my relative, I have not delved in to solve this discrepancy. I have only uncovered enough information to separate the identities of the two Charles.


[2] Source Citation Year: 1860; Census Place: District 1, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: M653_389; Page: 136; Image: 136; Family History Library Film: 803389. Source Information Ancestry.com. 1860 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: 1860 U.S. census, population schedule. NARA microfilm publication M653, 1,438 rolls. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.


[3] “Kentucky, County Marriages, 1797-1954,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/V657-QRB : accessed 19 January 2015), Charles Donohoo and Mary C Mahoney, 12 Jan 1864; citing p. 64, Nelson, Kentucky, United States, Madison County Courthouse, Richmond; FHL microfilm 481,488.


[4] Nelson County Kentucky marriages, bonds, consents and ministers’ returns. compiled by Lillian Ockerman … [et al.]. Ockerman, Lillian, Nelson County Genealogical Society (Bardstown, Kentucky), Nelson County Genealogy Roundtable (Bardstown, Kentucky). Bardstown, Kentucky : Nelson County Genealogical Society (Kentucky), [198-?]-2006. Family History Library 976.9495. v. 5. 1849-1864. Page 48.


[5] Source Citation Year: 1880; Census Place: District 8, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: 436; Family History Film: 1254436; Page: 308D; Enumeration District: 211; Image: 0038. Source Information Ancestry.com and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 1880 United States Federal Census[database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2010. 1880 U.S. Census Index provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints © Copyright 1999 Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. All use is subject to the limited use license and other terms and conditions applicable to this site. Original data: Tenth Census of the United States, 1880. (NARA microfilm publication T9, 1,454 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C.


[6] Source Citation Year: 1900; Census Place: New Hope, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: 546; Page: 8B; Enumeration District: 0089; FHL microfilm: 1240546. Source Information Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004. Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.


[7] Source Citation Year: 1910; Census Place: Magisterial District 1, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: T624_497; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 0106; FHL microfilm: 1374510. Source Information Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006. Original data: Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA.


[8] Source Citation Year: 1920; Census Place: New Hope, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: T625_593; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 111; Image: 581. Source Information Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2010. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: Fourteenth Census of the United States, 1920. (NARA microfilm publication T625, 2076 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA. Note: Enumeration Districts 819-839 are on roll 323 (Chicago City).


[9] Source Citation Year: 1930; Census Place: District 1, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: 772; Page: 3B; Enumeration District: 0003; Image: 253.0; FHL microfilm: 2340507. Source Information Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2002. Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Fifteenth Census of the United States, 1930. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1930. T626, 2,667 rolls.


[10] Mary Catherine Mahoney Donohoo, Find-A-Grave, Holy Cross Cemetery, Marion County, Kentucky, Created by Charlotte McConaha, record added 28 March 2012, Find A Grave Memorial #87503891;  http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=87503891&ref=acom. Accessed January 2015.


[11] Charles Donahue Death Certificate #13229, death date 16 May 1935. Source Information: Ancestry.com. Kentucky, Death Records, 1852-1953 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2007. Original data: Kentucky. Kentucky Birth, Marriage and Death Records – Microfilm (1852-1910). Microfilm rolls #994027-994058. Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, Frankfort, Kentucky.Kentucky. Birth and Death Records: Covington, Lexington, Louisville, and Newport – Microfilm (before 1911). Microfilm rolls #7007125-7007131, 7011804-7011813, 7012974-7013570, 7015456-7015462. Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, Frankfort, Kentucky.Kentucky. Vital Statistics Original Death Certificates – Microfilm (1911-1955). Microfilm rolls #7016130-7041803. Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, Frankfort, Kentucky.


[12] Source Citation: Year: 1850; Census Place: District 1, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: M432_215; Page: 278B; Image: 15. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1850 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: Seventh Census of the United States, 1850; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M432, 1009 rolls); Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29; National Archives, Washington, D.C.


[13] Source Citation: Year: 1860; Census Place: District 1, Nelson, Kentucky; Roll: M653_389; Page: 175; Image: 175; Family History Library Film: 803389. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1860 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch.


[14]  “Compiled Service Records of Volunteer Union Soldiers who Served in Organizations from the State of Kentucky,” digital images, Fold3 (fold3.com: accessed 5 January 2015, Kentucky 6th Cavalry, Company K, entry for Charles Donohoo; citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm publication M397, roll 0063.


[15] “Kentucky Marriages, 1785-1979,” index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/FWT1-5YM: accessed 5 January 2015), Chas. W. Donohou and Matilda Nally, 26 Jul 1874; citing Washington County, Kentucky, reference Reg 5 p 161; FHL microfilm 1,915,011.


[16] Washington County, Kentucky, Marriage Records, 1792-1989, Microfilm of original at the Margaret I. King Library, University of Kentucky, Lexington and the county courthouse, Springfield., Register Vol. 5-7: page 161, marriage of Chas W. Donohoo and Matilda Nally, 1874; FHL Film 1915011, Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.


[17] Frances Rebecca Thompson Death Certificate, 22 June 1938.  Ancestry.com. Illinois, Deaths and Stillbirths Index, 1916-1947 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011. Original data: “Illinois Deaths and Stillbirths, 1916–1947.” Index. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2010. Index entries derived from digital copies of original records.


[18] “United States Census, 1880,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MC89-71Y: accessed 5 January 2015), Charles W Donahue, North, Washington, Kentucky, United States, 204; citing sheet 322B, film number 0445, NARA microfilm publication T9, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.; FHL microfilm 1,254,445.


[19] “United States General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934,” index and images,  FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/KDYX-CNK: accessed 5 January 2015),
Charles Donohoo, 1883; citing Kentucky, United States, NARA microfilm publication T288, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.; FHL microfilm 540,882.


[20] Entry for Rebecca Donohoo marriage to Joseph Thompson. Dodd, Jordan, comp. Kentucky Marriages, 1851-1900 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2001.


[21] U.S. Census, Year: 1900; Census Place: Pottsville, Washington, Kentucky; Roll: 554; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 0129; FHL microfilm: 1240554. Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004. Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.


[22] “Kentucky Marriages, 1785-1979,” index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/FWB7-2QB: accessed 5 January 2015), Charles Donohos and Rosa Dowling, 23 Dec 1901; citing Springfield, Washington, Kentucky, reference 4; FHL microfilm 241,386.


[23] Memorial for Frances Matilda Nally Donahue, Saint Rose Cemetery, Springfield, Washington, Kentucky, Created by Gerald and Martha M. Thompson, record added 31 January 2013, Find a Grave Memorial #104457158. Find a Grave, http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=104457158: accessed 2/27/2015.


[24] “United States General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/KDYX-CNK : accessed 5 January 2015), Charles Donohoo, 1883; citing Kentucky, United States, NARA microfilm publication T288, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.; FHL microfilm 540,882.


[25] “United States Civil War and Later Pension Index, 1861-1917,” index, FamilySearch
(https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/NHV3-PMP: accessed 5 January 2015), Charles Donohoe, 25 Mar 1909; from “Organization Index to Pension Files of Veterans Who Served Between 1861 and 1900,” Fold3.com; company K, regiment 6, Kentucky, NARA microfilm publication T289.


[26] Memorial for Charles Donohoo, Saint Dominics Cemetery, Springfield, Washington, Kentucky, Created by Rhonda Patten Wathen & children, record added 11 February 2012, Find a Grave Memorial #84845793. Find a Grave, http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=84845793&ref=acom: accessed 5 January 2015.


[27] Obituary of Mrs. Rebecca Thompson, Freeport Journal-Standard (Freeport, Illinois). Monday, June 20, 1938. Page 14. Accessed at Newspapers.com on 12 January 2015.


[28] U.S. Census, Year: 1870; Census Place: Springfield, Washington, Kentucky; Roll: M593_502; Page: 402B; Image: 808; Family History Library Film: 552001. Ancestry.com. 1870 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: 1870 U.S. census, population schedules. NARA microfilm publication M593, 1,761 rolls. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.


[29] “Kentucky Marriages, 1785-1979,” index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/FWT1-ZW5: accessed 26 February 2015), Charls Donohue and Armacinda Oneil, 09 Jan 1872; citing Washington County, Kentucky, reference Reg 5 p 133; FHL microfilm 1,915,011.


[30] Washington County, Kentucky, Marriage Records, 1792-1989, Microfilm of original at the Margaret I. King Library, University of Kentucky, Lexington and the county courthouse, Springfield., Register Vol. 5-7: page 133, marriage of Charles Donohue and Armacinda Oneil, 1871; FHL Film 1915011, Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.


[31] “United States Census, 1880,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MC89-GMF : accessed 26 February 2015), Charles Donohoe, Glenville, Washington, Kentucky, United States; citing enumeration district 209, sheet 425D, NARA microfilm publication T9 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 0445; FHL microfilm 1,254,445.


[32] “United States World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/K3RM-6DX : accessed 26 February 2015), Gilbert Charles Donahoe, 1917-1918; citing Washington County, Kentucky, United States, NARA microfilm publication M1509 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 1,653,846.


[33] “Find A Grave Index,” index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/QVG3-5J8L: accessed 26 February 2015), Gilbert Charles Donahue, 1946; Burial, Springfield, Washington, Kentucky, United States of America, Cemetery Hill Cemetery; citing record ID 109049562, Find a Grave, http://www.findagrave.com.


[34] “Kentucky Death Records, 1911-1961”, index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/NSXD-H6K: accessed 26 February 2015), Charles Donohoe in entry for Gilbert Charles Donohoe, 1946.


[35] “Kentucky Death Records, 1911-1961”, index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/NSXD-H6V: accessed 26 February 2015), Gilbert Charles Donohoe, 1946.


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