From an email from Donna Gitter Haack to Patricia Balkcom in early 2023:
“I am a first cousin of Ellen McLaughlin Harford. Her father, Daniel McLaughlin, and my mother, Bernice McLaughlin Gitter, were siblings living on a farm in the Township of Lebanon, Waupaca County, Wisconsin.
Ellen and I share an interest in discovering information regarding our Irish ancestors. Ellen discovered you and your website some years ago and has very kindly shared her findings with me. Our great grandfather, Patrick McLaughlin, emigrated from Ireland in 1845, along with his sisters, to Valcartier, Quebec. Patrick resided in Valcartier and eventually married Mary Cassin in 1867 at St. Gabriel Cathedral. They left Valcartier in 1868 and settled in Waupaca Co, Wisconsin. I am the fourth generation of descendants who were born and raised on the farm originally settled by Patrick and Mary.
This farm is four miles north of the city of New London. To celebrate the many Irish who still live in this community, every year in March the city changes its name to New Dublin and rolls out their streets to host a parade followed by the raising of a pint or two at the local pubs. St. Patrick’s Day is stretched out for a week or more by other events that pay tribute to the Irish. One of these events was held March 19, 2022, at the New London Historical Village where some years ago a log cabin was assembled using the original logs from the home occupied by Patrick and Mary McLaughlin.
I was asked to come to New London Historical Village to talk about my Irish ancestors and share any information I had about the log cabin and its occupants. I put together a document, “My Irish Ancestry: Patrick McLaughlin connection,” which I have attached to this email. I included photos of the log cabin as it appeared prior to being disassembled and then after it was reassembled in the New London Historical Village. Pictured next to the cabin is my grandfather, Michael Thomas McLaughlin, son of Patrick and Mary. I also included a family photo of Michael with his wife Mary Ligouri Flanagan McLaughlin and their 11 children.
Ellen has written a companion piece, “Celebrating and Remembering March, 2022, New London, Wisconsin.”