That House in Altoona

The house pictured above is located at 2111 Fifth Avenue, Altoona, PA. There is a caption on the reverse [see below] which informs that the folks standing in front of the house are

Aunt Mary Moore
Uncle Willie Moore
Bill Moore
Elizabeth Moore
George Kearney
(Grandpa Kearney in Center)

The mother of the family was Mary Kearney (1866-1955), the daughter of George Kearney (1822-1886) and Catherine Moore (1838-1873). She was married to William Moore (1863-1946), also a native of Ireland, whose parents I was unable to identify. Mary and William arrived separately to the USA from County Donegal in the 1880s and married in May 1890. Their children were William Victor Moore (1891-1988), Elizabeth Kearney Moore (1895-1961), and, not pictured, George Harold Moore (1900-1981).

George Kearney is Mary’s nephew, George William Kearney (1895-1966), and Grandpa Kearney is Mary’s brother, William Kearney (1862-1922), who married Mary Margaret “Maggie” Moore (1864-1942) in 1893. George and Maggie’s other children were Thomas C. Kearney (1899-1901) and Allan Moore “Al” Kearney (1902-1979).

The first mention of the house in the newspapers was in May 1899: A quiet wedding was celebrated yesterday evening at the home of Mr. William Moore, 2111 Fifth avenue, who is a brother-in-law of the bride. The wedding united Mary’s sister Elizabeth Anne Kearney (1872-1939) with James Crawford (1870-1919), both also natives of Ireland. In the Census of 1900, Grandpa Kearney’s family was enumerated at 2107 Fifth Avenue, which had not been built when this photograph was taken. We can date the photograph to 1896-1898.

I suspect the person who wrote the caption on the back of the photograph was one of the Crawford children. I’d explain why I think that, but figuring out the Kearneys and Moores of Altoona in the late 19th Century gave me a headache — I want to move on to the next thing.

Both 2111 and 2107 are still there but, because the GoogleEarth camera did not drive down Fifth Avenue, we can only see them from above:

That House in Altoona

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