This has got to be one of the saddest stories I have ever heard, and like most stories I only found out about it after Aunt Virginia's Death.

My Aunt Virginia married my Uncle Thomas O'Driscoll, my Grandmother's Brother. Her life was tough, sad, strong, happy, all wraped into one.

Virginia's Father was "Thomas Victor Haines", born in Parsonstown Co Offaly, in 1873. Like most young men of that time, there was little work in the Country, so they traveled to the nearest city.

Thomas arrived in dublin in and around 1894, he came from a Church of Ireland background and so found work very quickly. He was employed as an Assurance Collector, with Prudential Insurance Com. As most of his customers were also Church of Ireland, he was doing pretty well.

He met his First Wife "Georgina Emily Alldritt" in 1876 and after courting for a couple of Month's they Married in June of 1897. And this is were the "Alldritt's" come into my family Tree. Things were going very well, work was plentiful, the pay was good, and life seemed rosey. In the September of 1900 Georgina gave Birth to there first child, "Meryvn Victor Thomas Haine's". Followed in the March of 1908 bye a Daughter "Gwendoline Ruby Lilian Georgina Haine's". The perfect family Boy & Girl. But alas in the Autumn of 1910 Georgina got Pneumonia and Died in the Dec 1910. Georgina is Buried in Mount Jerome Cemetery in Harolds Cross, Dublin Ireland.

Now Thomas was in a bit of a dilemma, a Widowed Man with Two young children and still trying to hold down his job, it could not have been easy.But Thomas had a solution, they had a Housekeeper by the Name of Teresa Donnelly, but Teresa was a Catholic. But things were tough would that matter, Thomas did'ent think so, so they married in Febuary 1912. And in the August of that same Year 1912 My Aunt Virginia Alice Maud Haine's was Born.

The story now as I was told, was that when some of Thomas's customers found out he had Married a Catholic they were not very pleased. He started to lose a lot of Customers.He was been paid on Commission, and this started to decline.He became Worried. Teresa had a Sister "Mary Donnelly" who a few years earlier had Emigrated to America, and was writing and telling them how great it was out there. So in January of 1913 Thomas headed out to America to see for him self, Teresa was to follow if it was as good as Mary said. As it turns out it was. So now it was Teresa's turn to travel, She realised in June 1913 that she was Pregnant again. So a Decision was made That - Teresa would Travel out with Thomas's 2 Young children , and herself in a pregnant state, and that Virginia would be left behind with her GrandMother Donnelly, and when things settled down they would come back for her.

Teresa left Dublin Ireland with her Brother Thomas, and her step children Mervyn and Ruby, on Board the Carmania Ship on the 23rd September 1913, arriving on Ellis island on the 1st October 1913.

Where she was met my her husband Thomas and her sister Mary. That was the last time they ever seen Virginia.

"THEY NEVER CAME BACK FOR HER".

Virginia grew up in the Donnelly household as one of there own, she was never treated any different than any of the other children , but she was a lot younger than all the others. Teresa's Mother was getting on in years now, so Teresa other sister Elizabeth who was 18 years older than Virginia began to mind her all the time. When Elizabeth got Married to Patrick Farrell in Dublin in 1919, They took Virginia with them to bring her up in there home. They went on to have Children of there own Albert and Rose, but Virginia was one of the Farrell gang now.

Thomas and Teresa went on to have a large Family in New Jersey, America, Just shortly after landing on Ellis Island in new York Teresa gave Birth to Victor Haine's in October of 1914. Then in the late July of 1915 Teresa gave Birth to Twins, Cyril - Madeline. Then in June 1917 there was Lois, and finally in February of 1919 she had Reginald.