Families in the Vale of Avoca

The Children of Thomas Watson, Sr. and Elizabeth Livingston Watson

Posted by Hannah Hill Rudstam on Thu, 07/25/2013 - 13:15

Thomas Watson, Sr. was born to Joseph and Elizabeth Watson in the Vale of Avoca, Ireland.  In our family, he is known as “The Teacher” because of his 40 year teaching career in the Vale of Avoca area in Ireland.  Thomas Watson graduated from Trinity College in Dublin, widely known as one of the worlds’ greatest universities when he attended.  Though we don’t know the exact dates he was at Trinity College, we can guess that it would have been around 1810.  Thomas was an excellent mathematician, flutist and singer.  After graduating, Thomas Watson, Sr. worked in the Customs House in Dublin, and then moved back to the Vale of Avoca where he married, taught school, was the choir director of Castle Macadam Church and raised a large family before leaving the Vale of Avoca for Wisconsin in 1855.  He never reached Wisconsin, however, dying three days into the journey. 

The following are the children of Thomas “The Teacher” Watson Sr (B:  1793 in Red Cross, Ireland;  D: 4/6/1855 at sea) and Elizabeth Livingston Watson (B: 1800 in Avoca, Ireland; D: 6/6/1881 in Grant Co Wisconsin):  

Married 12/26/1821 in Avoca, Ireland

John Livingston and Eleanor Brady Livingston

Castle Macadam gravestone rubbing reads: "Erected by Hugh Leviston in memory of his father John Leviston who dep this life May 1828 Aged 71 years. Also Mother Eleanor Leviston died (11?) March 1838 Aged 81 Years. Also Brother W. Leviston died in the East Indies 11 June 1822 Aged 31 Yrs"

John Livingston (aka Leviston; 1757-May, 1828), an early ancestor in the Vale of Avoca, Ireland, was born and died in the Vale of Avoca area.  Don Hill’s records show that John’s family came from Livingston, Scotland.  Though less is known about the lives of the Livingstons before they came to Scotland, we do know that John Livingston leased land in the Vale of Avoca near the copper mines where Joseph Watson was Captain of the Mines.  Though some of our family records suggest he had some skills in the mining industry, it seems John was largely a farmer in the Vale of Avoca. 

Eleanor Brady (aka Eleanor Leviston, 1757-March, 1838), the wife of John, was a Catholic who was also from the Vale of Avoca.  At the time they both grew up in the area of the Vale of Avoca, the Catholic/Protestant rift would have defined every part of their lives.  Our family record doesn’t give many details about how they came to meet and marry.  So we can only speculate that they would have had to overcome much to be together.  Eleanor did convert to John’s Protestant faith and they went on to lead the family from which many of the Wisconsin Livingstons descend.  They both lived and died in the Vale of Avoca.  Many of the their children, however, left Ireland, some for America and some for Australia. 

The following are the children of John and Eleanor Brady Livingston/Leviston:

(Please note:  1. Don Hill’s records show that some members of the family may have spelled their names Levingston; 2. There are three more children of John and Eleanor Livingston which I am currently unable to find.  Please check the website again as I will keep trying.)