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My grandfather, Daniel Francis Connors came to Pennsylvania from Wales in 1882. He was about 2 years old. I know this for a fact as evidenced by Ship Records and the US Census. His mother was Margaret George (nee Thomas). He was on the ship with her. His father (Henry Connors) came several months before he did with some of his other sons.

Henry Connors was born in County Cork, Ireland and went to Wales after 1861 with his two daughters and his first wife, Johanna, who died in January of 1879 after drowning.

On the Welsh 1881 Census, I have looked for years trying to find a Daniel Connors, spelling it in every way possible. Also on the BMD Index, I have sent off for multiple GRO Records and none of them have been a match.

Henry Connors would later marry Margaret George in July of 1881, after her first husband, Rosser George, was killed in a coal-mining accident 15 July 1880. I also cannot find Margaret George noted on any Welsh 1881 Census. I say this as I have a Welsh Birth Certificate with a Rosser George being born 16 August 1880 to a Rosser George (deceased) and a Margaret George (nee Thomas). My gut feeling tells me that this is my grandfather (Daniel Connors) who would be "adopted" and come to this country as Daniel Connors as he appears on the ship record of 1882. I, however, cannot prove this and really don't know how to reconcile this on any family tree. It seems that Margaret would have been noted on an 1881 Welsh Census as being widowed with a small son, but I have had no luck at all.

What would be the circumstances that would lead to hers and Daniel's/Rosser's absence from the Census and am I going to able to prove that Daniel may in fact have been Rosser George, the child whose father was killed in Wales and brought to this country as the adopted Daniel Connors. Daniel Connors seems not to exist in Wales at all and only takes on life as he boards the ship bound for America. I have been researching this for decades and clearly have hit a brick wall. Additionally, at least for me, it is disheartening as I have always thought that Henry Connors was my great grandfather from Ireland. But it would at least be nice to be able to prove it one way or the other.

Margaret's parents were elderly at the time of the 1881 Welsh Census. On that Census are listed David and Mary as grandchildren. These were Margaret's children from Rosser George. These two children were David and Mary, who would come to America with Margaret. The next child on the passenger manifest was Daniel, age one. He is never listed on any other documents from Wales, including the 1881 Welsh Census with Henry Connors. David and Mary and all Henry's children from the 1881 Census can be accounted for on the two separate voyages.

  • Welcome to G&FH SE! As a new user be sure to take the Tour to learn about our focussed Q&A format which is quite different from bulletin boards, discussion forums and other Q&A sites you may be used to. Are you able to include a cropped image of the passenger list that shows Daniel and Margaret's arrival in the US. Does it give Margaret's name as "Margaret George (nee Thomas)" and Daniel's as "Daniel Francis Connor"? Did it say where in Wales Margaret last lived? – PolyGeo Mar 4 '17 at 7:18
  • Could Margaret and Daniel have been in Ireland at the time of the 1881 Census? With Rosser George being killed on 15 July 1880 and his son's birth being registered a month later, I could imagine that his widow might want to visit his family to introduce her son to his paternal family. – PolyGeo Mar 4 '17 at 7:33
  • I have tons of records on my computer, but was unsure of how to attach them to my post. I know these would help if I just knew how to do it. – Kathy C. Mar 4 '17 at 17:08
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    One step you should take is to attempt to trace the infant Rosser George forward -- look for death records, later census appearances, his own marriage etc. If you can't find any trace of him after his birth, it strengthens (but doesn't prove) the case for him adopting a different name. – user104 Mar 5 '17 at 14:16
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    Kathy. also it's worth following the FAN principle -- looking for friends/families/neighbours of Margaret in 1881.Any other children? Her parents? Her deceased husband's parents? – user104 Mar 5 '17 at 15:28
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One way forward would be to look for documents in the United States which confirm the birthdate of your mystery man, for example military records or an entry on the ssdi if he has one.

If the birthdate matches, the probability that the Welsh birth and the later US records refer to the same man goes up greatly.

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  • The birthdate is only off by one day!! That's when I was pretty sure that Daniel Connors must have been Rosser George at birth and was "resurrected" as Daniel Connors in Pennsylvania. Daniel noted on every document that bears his name that he was born in Pennsylvania, however I know this is impossible for a lot of reasons. At the age of 1 or 2 and coming to this country, he would have believed what his parents told him. Maybe he wanted to Americanize himself like many other immigrants at the time. – Kathy C. Mar 6 '17 at 20:24
  • @KathyC. I think it would be worth adding the birth date and source you have for Daniel Connors into your question. Being only a day off would seem to be strong evidence for your theory about he and Rosser being the same person. – PolyGeo Mar 7 '17 at 2:25

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