Tag Archives: Donnelly

Ellen Donnelly McLaughlin

This is a photo of Ellen “Nell” Donnelly, who became Mrs. John McLaughlin.

Ellen Donnelly McLaughlinHer sister was Jane Donnelly (Mrs. Charles Boyle), who was the mother of Mary Ann Loretta Boyle Morey.

I’m pretty sure John and Ellen Donnelly McLaughlin had just one daughter, Mary McLaughlin, who never married and — as far as I know — died without issue.

Mary was a sharp-tongued woman with long, grey hair that she pinned up. She traveled a lot, collected things for resale, and left a considerable fortune when she died… almost all of it to charity.

So, people like my father — who spent a lot of time with Mary in her late years — were kind of stunned when she left them nothing.

The thing is, she’d often mentioned “someone’s” will she’d read, and the person left everything to charity, a little here and a little there. She kept saying how it was one of the most interesting wills she’d ever seen. To this day, I have no idea if she’d copied the idea herself, or if she was simply dropping hints to everyone, describing her own will.

I liked her a lot. She was a merry woman with a hearty laugh, and she was always very entertaining. I think she had a falling-out with my maternal grandmother over some joke Mary had made, but that incident was far beyond my understanding. Mary was a fun relative, and I’d enjoyed every time she visited us.