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I wanted to post this message for the Strokestown Workhouse. My great, great grandmother Catherine McDonnell McCormack gave birth to her son Francis at Strokestown Workhouse on October 4, 1864, which is the year civil registration of Catholic births began. Within a month, sons Thomas and William died at home in Corboghil of scarletina.  Catherine was present at their deaths. I have always wondered why she gave birth at the workhouse and if other family members were with her. Obviously they were in Corboghil soon after Francis's birth. Did Catherine bring scarletina home with her?  I would appreciate any insights. 


Sunday 1st Mar 2020, 11:10AM

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  • Lynne:

    Welcome to Ireland Reaching Out!

    We are conducting a cleanup operation of unanswered messages and apologize for the delay in responding.

    It is very hard to figure out what actually happened and it was a sad situation for your ancestral family.  Possibly, Catherine's pregnancy was difficult and she was taken to the Workhouse where there was a dcotor. She gave birth and then returned with Francis. Shortly after her return, the other two sons came down with scarlet fever and passed. It may have been coincidental.

    The other possibility is what you suggested that Catherine brought the infection home from the workhouse but why didn't Francis also succumb?

    Roger McDonnell

    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Friday 17th Jul 2020, 06:24PM
  • I don't have enough information about the conditions at the time in the Strokestown area, but of course we know they were very difficult. When Francis was born and his two brothers died of Scarletina, there were four additional brothers living in the home. 


    Saturday 18th Jul 2020, 12:56PM
  • Lynne:

    I read this book about three months ago    The book was based on the notes of a doctor who worked in the Skibbereen workhouse.


    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Sunday 19th Jul 2020, 01:30PM

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