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From our Benefactors

Heritage Narratives

Each member of the Harp and Shamrock has a unique story to tell about their own Irish heritage. As a benefit of our Benefactor level membership, we are honored to share a few of those stories here. For information about how to become a Benefactor of the Harp & Shamrock Society of Texas, please visit our Join and Renew page.

Joan Moody's Family Story

My great-grandmothers were Ann Jennings, a native of County Cork later lived in Montana and Ohio and Kate McHugh, a native we thought of County Cavan but now details are pointing to County Mayo instead. Ann Jennings married John Kramer and they had a son John Kramer, who was my grandfather.

Kate McHugh came to Texas by way of Baltimore, Maryland with her sister and brother-in-law to be part of reconstruction of the south following the Civil War. Her brother-in-law introduced her to George Oswalt and they were married in 1869. George was also a part of the reconstruction force here in Texas and as such was at many of the cavalry posts around the state but always came back to San Antonio. As far as we know there were eight children born to this union of who six girls survived and the youngest was Eva, my grandmother.

Eva met John when he was stationed at Ft. Sam Houston in the early 1900's with Company G 26th Infantry and were married in 1910. Kate and George were connected with many things in San Antonio, their first house was where the downtown courthouse/post office is now and from there moved across the street where the Emily Morgan Hotel is now. From there they moved north near Ft. Sam Houston and bought and developed property across from the quadrangle. It was this property that the government bought from them to enlarge Ft. Sam.

Kate died in 1919 and is buried at St. Mary's Cemetery along with her husband who died in 1921. Kate came to the U.S. around 1853 or so following the famine. Her passage money was sent by her sister Mary Louise who lived in Baltimore and later they sent the passage money over for another sister, Breege (Bridget) but had just enough to get her to Boston.

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