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gorman families of eagan

MARGARET (1829-1884) Patrick Quealy ( ) St. Peters Mendota MN
MARY  ( - 1888)

JOHN  (1817- 1882) Mary Quealy (1851) St. Henrys, Perham MN
MICHAEL (1827-1894) Ann Murphy ( ) St. Peters Mendota MN
PATRICK (1833- ) Mary Maher ( ) (No information available)

MARY (1834-1912) Peter Burke ( )
MICHAEL T. ( - 1855)
JOHN (1822- ) married Elizabeth Dougherty (1820- )

It was common for Irish emigrants to arrive in the U.S. and congregate with extended family members and/or folks from the same parish in Ireland.  In Minnesota Territory, in the mid-1850's, it appears that there was a settlement effort comprised of families from the Clondagad parish in County Clare.  These families are known to be Patrick Quealy and his wife, Margaret Gorman; Mary Gorman, sister of Margaret Gorman Quealy; Catherine Quealy, wife of Michael Hoy; Bridget Quealy; wife of Patrick Cleary; Honorah Quealy, wife of Peter Cleary; and Cornelius and Bridget Cleary whose sons Patrick and Peter married Quealy women.  

Other members of this group were likely Patrick Gorman of County Clare; Michael Gorman; and John O. Gorman and his wife, Mary Quealy.

Besides the clustering of Condagad parish families and their interrelationships by marriage, there are two clues that suggest these families came to Minnesota as a large group or colony.  A great-granddaughter of Patrick Gorman recalls the family story that Patrick returned to Ireland at some point and helped organize the emigration of 20 related families to the U.S.  The published biography of a grandson of John O. Gorman says " John Gorman and Mary Qualy Gorman, who came with a colony from Ireland to southern Minnesota...."   Besides the Quealys, Gormans and Clearys,  families like the Dalys in who settled in Eagan, may have been part of the colony.

In Minnesota territorial days, from about 1854-1857, a cluster of Gorman or O'Gorman folks settled in Mendota, some of them claiming farms in what would become the township of Eagan.  Family relationships between these Gorman families are not clearly known.  Margaret Gorman, the wife of Patrick Quealy, and Mary Gorman, a single woman, were sisters.

John, Michael, and Patrick Gorman appear to be brothers and they are probably the brothers of Margaret and Mary.  These three Gormans, along with Patrick Quealy, claimed contiguous farms in Eagan Township.  Adults in these families served as godparents for each others' children. These Gormans and Marget Gorman Quealy are described on separate pages at the site. See

MARY  ( - 1888) (Parents unknown)

Mary Gorman, a single woman, was living in a Mendota hotel in 1857 and on the Patrick Quealy farm in 1860.  Then, she left the area - it is possible that she was living with a Michael and Kate Farrell family in Madison, Wisconsin when the 1870 and 1880 censuses were taken. By 1885, she was again living on the Pat Quealy farm in Eagan perhaps having returned to care for her sister, Margaret, who died in October that year.   In his will, Patrick Quealy provided for his sister-in-law granting her a home for life on his farm, assigning his son the responsibility to support Mary, and giving his daughters annual payments for assisting with the care of their aunt.  Mary is said to have been from Lissycasey, County Clare.  She died 8 August 1888 on the Quealy farm at Eagan, Dakota County, Minnesota.

MARY (1834-1912) Peter Burke ( )

Mary Burke settled in Eagan near the Gorman farms and is thought to be related .  Her death record lists her as the daughter of Mike Gorman.

MICHAEL T. ( Abt 1828 -1855)

Michael T. Gorman who died 25 September 1855 , age 28, is buried at St. Peter's cemetery, Mendota.  The relationship between Michael T. and the other Gormans in Eagan is unknown.

JOHN (1822- ) married Elizabeth Dougherty (1820- )

St. Peter's CatholicChurch in Mendota baptism records show that Rose Gorman, born  8 November 1856, was baptized on 11 January 1857.  Rose's parents were John Gorman and Elizabeth Dougherty. This family does not appear in Dakota County census records.  By 1870, the family was living in Erin Township, Rice County, Minnesota.

John Gorman b: May 1822 in Ireland  (Parents Unknown)
Elizabeth Dougherty b: February 1820 in Ireland  (Parents Unknown)


Michael Gorman b: Abt. 1850 married Anna
Eliza Gorman b: Abt. 1855 in Illinois
Mary Gorman b: Abt. 1855 in Illinois
Rose Gorman b: 08 November 1856 in Minnesota
David Gorman b: Abt. 1859 in MN
Ellen "Nellie" Gorman b: Abt. 1861 in MN
John M. Gorman b: 29 March 1862 in Minnesota

In 1870, yet another Gorman family was living next to John and Elizabeth in Erin Township: GORMAN David 35 farmer b IRE, Johanna 28 b Ire; Michael 8 b MN; Patrick 6, b MN; John 4, b MN; David 1, b MN.  This David and Johanna Gorman family came from Limerick. By the early 1900s, John and Elizabeth were living in Warsaw, Rice County, Minnesota. For census records for these families, contact sean at

This family file contains the research notes of Mr. Kevin Geraghty with additional information provided by Shawne FitzGerald and Mrs. Genevieve Arndt.    Mr. Geraghty is researching the families and descendants of the Dakota County Irish. For more information or to contribute to Mr. Geraghty's research, please send him e-mail at kgerag @

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updated Mar 2006