Saturday, January 27, 2018

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 4 - Dinner for 2

It is an intimate occasion. Dinner for two at the Lake Shore Athletic Club on Lake Shore Drive in Chicago. I am on the rooftop deck of her club on a summer evening with my maternal aunt Kathy.
Kathleen Connery 1920s

Kathleen Connery was born 10 April 1895, the second of nine children born to M J and Alice Fleming Connery. Kathleen grew up in the windy city of Chicago, Illinois.

As a student Kathleen attended St Joseph Academy, in Adrian, Michigan as did her sisters Mary, Alice, Pauline, and Eleanor. Kathy graduated in June of 1913 having finished four years of high school.[i]

As an adult my aunt Kathy lived through two world wars, the 1918 influenza epidemic, the roaring 20s, the stock market crash,  the beginning of air travel and even the very beginning of the computer age. I would love to speak to her about her experiences during these events.

Did any of her friends go to war? How did the “Roaring 20s” feature in her life? What can she tell me about the families left back in Ireland or even possibly of those rumored to have gone to Australia "one step ahead of the British"? That bit of family lore is true as I have DNA matches supporting that!

As a travel agent Kathleen often went to Europe both by air and steamship. She spent time with her Irish aunts, uncles, and cousins in Limerick, Ireland.
Kathleen with Mother and Sisters in audience with Pope Pius XII and Archbishop Bernard J Shiel
circa 1950s

Kathleen winning a contest shipboard.

There were also private audiences with the Pope Pius XII as Kathleen escorted tours to Rome with her mother, sisters and Archbishop Bernard J. Sheil, a family friend.

What glorious stories she would have to tell since her life encompassed most of the 20th century!

[i] Information received by e-mail from the archivist at the Adrian Dominican Motherhouse, Adrian, Michigan.