St Charles Borromeo church where Mary
Donahue sang in the choir. The church, at the corner of today's Roosevelt
Road and Hoyne Avenue, was a few blocks away from the Donahue's home on Taylor
Might have been a different Officer
Donahue who captured the horse in 1896 but in a city filled with Irish
immigrants and their offspring, and dozens in the police and fire departments,
this is the only Officer Donahue I found, despite some series web stomping.
So there's a good chance this horse whisperer was Mary's father. If it's
not him, it's still a fun story.
Eighteen year old Mary E.
Donahue (b.1885) may have attended the theater with
Edna Torney. Mary was a member
choir at St. Charles Barromeo church and Edna had previously been the
Mary was the wife of a police sergeant
but she was actually
the daughter of one:
Donahue, who identified
her body where it was found at Perrigo's funeral
home. If Thomas was the horse whisperer in the
attached story the Iroquois would have been part of
his beat but it's thought that five years before the
Iroquois fire he was a patrol sergeant at the
Twenty-Seventh precinct on Desplaines and Waldo.
The Donahue family worked, lived, attended church
and school in a twenty-block area that is known
today as Little Italy. Mary probably
took a street car to the Iroquois.
On Monday morning, January 4, 1904 a
mass was sung at the
St. Charles Borromeo church on
12th and Cypress
for Mary and
Edna by alumni members of the choir, accompanied by
a organ purchased two years before.
Bishop Muldoon was the pastor at St. Charles but it
is not known if he said Mary's funeral mass.
According to a
Silver Jubilee book published about the church,
its choir was exceptionally active and sponsored
various social events.
was the oldest of four children born to
Thomas L. and Margaret Heelan Donahue. Like her parents
and siblings, she was born in Illinois. Both sets of
grandparents were born in Ireland. The Donahue's
owned their home at 1042 W. Taylor in Chicago
– a structure that today is across the street from
Little Joe's Italian restaurant.
Mary was reportedly buried in
the Huntley Cemetery in Huntley, Illinois, northwest
of Chicago, but she may instead be buried across
Dean street in the St. Mary's Cemetery with her
parents and some of her siblings. On
Find-a-Grave she is listed in both cemeteries.
Margaret Heelan's widowed mother, Bridget, lived in
Mary's mother died four years after the Iroquois
fire and her father then married his late wife's
younger sister, Raleigh Heelan.