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HomepageNotes and Biographical Material
Relatives of Cardinal Cullen
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The Statue of Cardinal Cullen
"The Irish Builder" issue of May 1, 1882

This statue, the work of our distinguished fellow townsman and efficient native sculptor Mr. T. Farrell, R.H.A., has been placed in position in the Cathedral. The site of its erection is on the left of the sanctuary, a position corresponding with that of the statue of Archbishop Murray, the work also of Mr. Farrell. In catching the likeness of the Cardinal, the sculptor has been most successful, as he generally is with all his subjects. The head of the Cardinal is uncovered, and the hands are well arranged, the left one holding up a portion of the flowing robes, which scarcely seem of marble material the folds are so deftly executed; the pedestal on which the statue will rest has been placed in position within the last few days in the Cathedral. It is of Carrara marble, and divided into compartments. A daily contemporary speaks of Mr. Farrell as being the sculptor most likely to be entrusted with the execution of the contemplated memorial of the late Denis Florence McCarthy, the poet. It adds also:- "The statue of Cardinal Cullen, it is supposed, will be inaugurated about the middle of next (this) month, and soon after the arrival here of Cardinal McCabe, who will preside at the ceremonial, at which the Dean and Chapter, and a large assemblage of the secular and regular clergy of the Arch-diocese will assist. Art critics of no mean capacity, after having seen the statue of Pope Pius IX., by Benzoni, exhibited here in the exhibition of 1863, and purchased by Cardinal Cullen for Holy Cross College, Clonliffe, where it now is, pronounced Mr. Farrell's statue of Cardinal Cullen to be its superior as a work of art in sculpture."

We again congratulate Mr. Farrell on the completion of another work, which in its entire execution adds to his fame as a distinguished native sculptor, of whom our countrymen ought to be proud of having residing in their midst.

Many thanks to Felix Soden of Dublin for bringing this article to our attention.

Leighlin Administration Bonds

From the Index to the Leighlin Administration Bonds. The index to Leighlin wills 1652-1800 was printed in Vol 1 of the indexes to Irish Wills by Phillimore. The Administration Bond list contains information on persons who died with no will and his/her affairs were settled by someone else. Relevant listings for the surname Cullen are: Peter Cullen (1766); Constantine Cullen of Parke, Co Carlow (1703 & 1705); Ann Cullen of Hacketstown, spinster through 1769; Daniel Cullen of Downings, farmer (1824); Rev Paul Cullen of Leighlin Bridge (1783) - NOT the same person as Cardinal Paul Cullen. This Fr Paul Cullen (1702-1783), Parish Priest of Leighlin, is said to be the uncle or great uncle of the Cardinal.

Death of an Old Colonist
Obituary of Christopher Flanagan, relative of Cardinal Cullen,
in the April 24, 1894 edition of the Goulburn Evening Penny Post

(?) the person of Mr. C. J. K. Flanagan, who died at his son's residence, Bywong, Gundaroo, a very old colonist has gone over to the great majority. The deceased gentleman, who was a native of Kilkenny, at an early age entered upon a course of studies, first at a grammar school and afterwards at Minute College, Dublin, for the priesthood, but before completing the term met with an accident which caused him to relinquish his studies. For the benefit of his health he then, in company with surveying party, travelled through England, Scotland, and Ireland, and on his return to the latter place, having a mind for surveying, he again entered college and qualified himself for that profession. Being appointed Government surveyor he further travelled in that capacity. While in Ireland the late Mr. Flanagan married Johanna Conroy, daughter of a retired publican, and the fact of his marriage, it being hoped that deceased would enter the church, caused his parents serious disappointment, with the result that he was deprived of a handsome fortune to have been allotted him, the money being bequeathed for missionary purposes. Deceased's eldest brother thereupon offered to take him as a partner on a plantation he had then established in America, but this was declined. Mr. Flanagan having previously made up his mind to emigrate to Australia. By doing this he probably escaped a watery grave, the ship with its cargo and merchandise and the crew being lost at sea, deceased's brother being amongst the drowned. In 1841 Mr. Flanagan landed in Sydney, and on his arrival there was robbed of all his belongings, his luggage, which was placed in the depot, being stolen. Amongst these were all the books and appliances of his profession, and this loss necessitated his giving up the ideas of procuring a living in the calling for which he had been educated. Mr. Flanagan's wide knowledge served him sufficiently well to allow of his obtaining employment as bookkeeper and general manager for Mr. McArthur, of Arthursleigh, and while thus engaged many things revolting to his kindly disposition came under his notice, the labour of the estate being principally done by convicts, many of whom when distressed found relief and sympathy at his hands. Many an unfortunate convict escaped chastisement through his intercession. After leaving the service of the gentleman abovenamed deceased accepted an appointment as gaoler in Goulburn, and was acting in that capacity when Talbut, the notorious Bungonia murderer, was executed. Talbut while in prison wrote a history of his life with a full confession of his crimes, which he placed in the hands of Mr. Flanagan, who, believing that the publication of such would have no good effect upon society, did not bring the same before the public. Part of Talbut's confession, however, was that for 16 years he had prayed to the devil, and up to the time of his execution he suffered from the hallucination that the demon of darkness visited his cell nightly, spitting fire and making facial contortions. So terrified in this belief was the doomed man that he dreaded the approach of night and begged piteously to share a cell with other prisoners; but none cared to accept his companionship. Mr. Flanagan consequently spent the last night of the condemned man's life in the cell, hoping the calm the fear of the unfortunate man and induced him to repent. He described this as a horrible scene, which had the effect of causing him to resign the position of gaoler. He stated that he would never again desire to see human suffering so intense. The late gentleman was offered higher positions in the service, but preferring country life engaged with Dr. (afterwards Sir) Terence Aubrey Murray as manager of his estate, now known as the Ryrie(?) estate, Micalago. This estate changing hands he engaged in various pursuits, and eventually settled down at Spring Mount, near Queanbeyan, and followed farming up to the time of his wife's death, when he disposed of his property and lived with his son. Deceased was highly connected, being a relative of the late Cardinal Paul Cullen, with whom he corresponded up to within a short time of the distinguished prelate's decease. He was a cousin to the renowned land (?) and journalist, John Ford, editor of the New York Herald. He leaves a large and respected family, seven sons and three daughters, three of whom are settled in the Queanbeyan district, others being settled in Coonamble, Wagga Wagga, and Orange, one, Mrs. M. J. Casey, being a resident of Goulburn. Deceased lived to the grand old age of 82 years, and led a remarkably pious life.

For more information, please visit Steve Knowles Homepage and click on the link for his surname interests which are arranged alphabetically.

The Most Reverend Michael Verdon DD (1895-1918)
Second Bishop of Dunedin & Nephew to Cardinal Cullen

Michael Verdon, an Irishman, a nephew of Cardinal Cullen of Dublin and a cousin of Cardinal Moran of Sydney, was born in 1838, at Liverpool. Verdon had been vice-rector of the Irish College in Rome and rector of the seminary in Sydney before his new appointment. Bishop Michael Verdon succeeded Bishop Moran in 1896 and was the first Catholic Bishop to be conscrated in New Zealand in 1896. One of his first concerns was the establishment of a national seminary in Dunedin, with the support of the other bishops. Holy Cross College, Mosgiel near Dunedin was opened on the 3 May 1900, exactly four years after Verdon's consecration. It was a significant step forward for the Church in New Zealand, for the seminary has not only ensured that there has been an adequate supply of clergy trained for New Zealand conditions but has created a very real bond between the secular priests of the country. In the great influenza epidemic of 1918, which caused the deaths of thousands of people throughout the country, the Catholic schools became temporary hospitals and the nuns became nurses. It was the first time that many of the patients had come into direct contact with Catholic nuns and it did much to break down the ignorance and prejudice about them that had been widely current. Among the victims of the epidemic was the Bishop of Dunedin, Dr. Verdon, a man revered by his people both for his scholarship and his holiness. He died in Wellington at the age of 80 years in 1918. Bishop Verdon was descended from Geoffrey, Count de Verdon, Duke of Lower Lorraine and Count of Ardennes, whose brother became Pope Stephen IX in 1057. Geoffrey' son Bertram came to England with William the Conqueror, and in 1086 was granted the privilege of presenting the glove, stamped with the de Verdon coat of arms to the sovereigns of England at their coronation and of supporting the right arm of the sovereign as long as the king held the sceptre during the coronation ceremony. Subsequently the Verdons became one of the great Norman families of Ireland. They fought against Edward Bruce, brother of Robert Bruce of Scotland, when Edward attempted to make himself King of Ireland.

Thanks to Marc Peyroux, who maintains St Joseph's Cathedral, Dunedin, New Zealand

The Most Reverend Patrick Moran DD (1869-1895)
First Bishop of Dunedin & Relative of Cardinal Cullen

Bishop Patrick Moran, DD.. under whose administration St Joseph's Cathedral was erected. Born in County Wicklow, Ireland, in 1823, Patrick Moran was ordained priest in 1847. In 1856 at the age of thirty-three, he was conscrated Bishop of Dardania and second Vicar Apostolic of the Vicariate of the Eastern Districts of the Cape of Good Hope, residing in Grahamstown. After thirteen years in South Africa, Bishop Moran was transferred in 1869 to the new diocese of Dunedin, arriving here in 1871. Bishop Moran died in Dunedin, May 22, 1895.

Thanks to Marc Peyroux, who maintains St Joseph's Cathedral, Dunedin, New Zealand

Relevant Posting from Unknown County, Ireland

I am Looking for information on Captain Edwin (or Edward) CLARK(E), born around 1800 possibly in Scotland. He was married to Ann CONNOR of Co Cork. Ann CONNOR was somehow related to Cardinal Patrick MORAN, who's mother (Alicia Mary CULLEN 1791-1831) was a sister of Cardinal Paul CULLEN.

Capt. Edwin CLARK(E) and his wife Ann CONNOR had a daughter Mary Ann CLARKE who was born in 1831 perhaps at Liverpool and died in Lancashire in 1866. Evidently Mary Ann was married to one of the PITT family as she had a daughter Mary Ann PITT. Mary Ann PITT would later marry Thomas COCKS, my great-grandfather, who had come to New Zealand in 1876.

The PITTs, CLARKEs, CONNORs, and CULLENs were Roman Catholics. My father, from whom I got the information a few years ago, is now deceased, and I have been looking in all Irish places that I can think of. Any help would be gratefully accepted.

Relevant Posting from Unknown County, Ireland

Edward CULLEN, son of a James CULLEN, mother unknown. James was a Stone-Mason. I have as yet not been able to ascertain where in Ireland James came from, and how and when he arrived in Australia. I have always presumed him to be a convict because of the time frame. His son Edward was born in 1833, in Sydney and baptised in St. Mary's Cathedral. Edward CULLEN married a Jane HARRISON, on 8 August 1853 at St. Matthew's Church Windsor. They had 13 children. Edward's daughter, Hannah Mary, always said that Cardinal Moran was their cousin.

Relevant Posting from County Dublin, Ireland

My g-grandfather (Edward Cullen) was born in Kingston,Ireland in 1846. His first cousin was Cardinal Paul Cullen and also a Sir Lawrence Murphy (both of Dublin). He was a sea captain and moved to Cleveland, Ohio in 1872. His wife was Helen Walters and I believe she was from Wales(?). It is said that one son, Herbert Cullen, married Anna Louise Lehn in New York about 1890 and that Edward died in 1898 in New York (?).Other family names are: Brophy, Dowling, Whelan, Mahar, O'Toole, Clowry, Nolan and Leonard. Some of the family moved to Liverpool, Eng. in the mid to late 1800's.

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