Santa Cruz County History - People

Old Soldiers: Santa Cruz County Civil War Veterans
by Robert L. Nelson

McAULIFFE, THOMAS F (1840-1900)

Watsonville Pajaronian (February 1, 1900)

Photograph of Thomas F McAuliffe
Photo of Thomas F. McAuliffe
courtesy of Helen B. Collins
& Frank Warzeski III

Thos. F. McAuliffe died last Friday afternoon at his home near Camp Goodall. His funeral took place Sunday afternoon, and was attended by a large gathering of friends and delegations of members from Pajaro Lodge I.O.O.F. and Watsonville Encampment of Odd Fellows. He was a native of Massachusetts, aged 60 years. He was a veteran of the Civil war, having served in a Massachusetts regiment. He came to California soon after the close of the war, and lived in this valley several years. He then went south, and for a number of years lived at San Diego. He returned to Pajaro valley about ten years ago, and after a time engaged in farming at the old Knowles place on the Camp Goodall road. About a year ago he was stricken with the grippe, and the disease was so severe that he could not regain his former health. He was a straightforward man, one who attended strictly to his own business and was just and upright. He left a wife and son.

Notes from Helen Collins, Grand Niece

Thomas F. McAuliffe was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1840 and traveled with his Irish mother and father in 1844 to Sheboygan, Wisconsin (called the Michigan Territory) where they had a farm. His parents John and Honora "Leahy" McAuliffe and two younger brothers, John David and Daniel Joseph (both born in Sheboygan) left Wisconsin for the California Gold Rush in 1849 and arrived in March 1850 in San Francisco. Both parents died shortly after and left the boys orphans, and they resided with the nuns and the priests. Thomas McAuliffe married Charlotte Knowles (his cousin) and she was the daughter of Honora McAuliffe Knowles and Edgar Alonso Knowles, the first school teachers in Watsonville. Edgar Alonso Knowles was also on the Watsonville school board later on. Thomas and Charlotte McAuliffe had one son, Edgar McAuliffe, 1887-1976. He worked in the print room of the CHRONICLE newspaper in! San Francisco until he retired and died in 1976. They are all buried in the Pajaro Valley Catholic Church cemetery in Watsonville. Thomas F. McAuliffe was originally buried in the IOOF cemetery, but in 1914 when his wife Charlotte Knowles McAuliffe died, their son Edgar McAuliffe had Thomas' body removed from the IOOF cemetery and placed in the Pajaro Catholic church cemetery.

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