Biography

John Jones CURRAN

(1839-1920)


The following notes is by Gay Curran Husband, Canada, 1970:

John Jones Curran was born on May 15, 1839 at Ternagreevagh, Loughgall, Armagh, Ireland, the son of George Curran and Mary Jones Curran. He was the eldest of five children His father was a miller and his sons trained in that trade, except for Robert who was an Episcopalian minister and died of smallpox at the age of 26 . John J (he hated the middle name Jones as a name) sang in the Protestant Cathedral in Armagh. He loved to sing, even in his later years when he became very deaf and would sing out of tune.

On July 31 1860, he married Jane Watson, the daughter of James Watson and Catherine McMackay of Calvalillion, Gortin, Co. Tyrone in the Scotts Church. Robert Curran and James Watson were the witnesses. His father bought him Greggs Mills and he carried on his trade as a miller. Jane Watson was a milliner. Helen Arhens (Helen Hariet Curran - 1st child of his 2nd marriage - EBC) says that May (Mary Sophia Curran - 1st child of his 1st marriage - EBC) saw the cottage in 1923 and his name was there as it used to be. I have seen a snapshot of it taken by my father in 1918. I think I did an oil painting of it when I was a teenager. Later he had a change to get a larger place, and so moved to "Rockvale", four miles from Crossgar. Helen Curran Arhens had a painting of the house and mill made in 1936 by a Mr Wagner. She says in her notes that she heard that John and Jane Curran were a very handsome couple. Jane died March 31 1869 of consumption, which she suffered with for 14 months. John J. was with her at her death. Relatives in Ireland told May Curran Lantz how good he was to her, doing everything possible to ease her pain. The place of death is listed as Lisnamore (Civil parish of Kilmore, Co Down - Ebc) on her Death Certificate).

John J Curran married Jane (Jennie) Millar on August 1st 1872. She was the daughter of William and Margaret Kane Millar and was born in Downpatrick, Co Down, Jul 9th 1845, where her family had lived for three generations. Sometime in her childhood, her father moved to Crossgar, a village 10 miles away. After their marriage John J and Jenny Curran went to "Rockvale" where Helen was born, and three months later they left for Canada.

There had been three or four years on bad weather and no flax. John J had gone to much expense enlarging the mill. The big chimney was built at this time. It may be pointed out that these were leased lands as there was no freehold land as we know it on the American continent.

The following is quoted from Helen Curran Arhens' notes:

"So they came to Canada during a very bad depression in 1873 and settled in Toronto, where Jack was born in 1873, coming to Orillia the same year. Father worked for a short time for the Orillia Times, was in Montreal on the Herald where Jim was a reporter twenty years later. He bought the Canadian Reporter and Essex Exporter in Essex Xenter in 1880, remaining there for a short time; sold the Exporter (and got nothing for it) and with the expectation of money, started the Orillia Newsletter in 1884 with the Canadian Workman. The Newsletter was turned over th the three older boys, George, Jim and Bob. The Canadian Workman he edited up to the time of his death in 1920. He was a very good editorial writer. He told me of being offered the editorship of some insurance paper for the Maritime Proivinces at a very good salary, but with his extreme deafness, he felt that he couldn't handle it"

John J Curran died February 16 1920 at Orillia, Simcoe County, Ontaro of Pneumonia. Jenny Curran died July 3, 1927 at Orillia.
 


Picture Library
References
  1. Canadian 1911 Census


Last updated 14th February2010 Person Reference No: 216