Transcribed from History of Labette County, Kansas and its Representative Citizens, ed. & comp. by Hon. Nelson Case. Pub. by Biographical Publishing Co., Chicago, Ill. 1901

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Michael Carr Gaffey

MICHAEL CARR GAFFEY, city engineer of Parsons, Kansas, was born in Randolph county, Indiana, February 11, 1854, and is a son of Bryan and Margaret (Carr) Gaffey, natives of Ireland, the former coming from County Roscommon, the latter from County Galway. Bryan Gaffey was a sailor in his boyhood. He came to America about 1848, and located in Massachusetts, where he was married to Margaret Carr. They moved to Winchester, Indiana, in the winter of 1853-54, before the subject hereof was born. The father engaged in railroad work for some time, after which he began farming near the town. He is now at the advanced age of ninety years, and resides at the home of a daughter, Mrs. Julia Hurley, of Indianapolis, Indiana. His wife died in Indiana, in August, 1891, aged sixty-six years. Bryan Gaffey and his wife were parents of eight children, the birth of the first two having occurred in Massachusetts; they were: Mary, who died in infancy; John, deceased at the age of forty-two years; Michael Carr, the subject of this narrative; Thomas, a printer by trade, who died at the home of his brother, Michael, in November, 1900; Julia (Hurley), of Indianapolis, Indiana; Ella (Franks), of Des Moines, Iowa; Eliza (McNirney), of Anderson, Indiana; and William, a traveling man.

Michael C. Gaffey attended the common schools of Indiana, and later was a student at Asbury College, now known as DePauw University. After leaving this institution, Mr. Gaffey taught school seven winters, and maintained his studies as he could. He left home at fifteen years of age, and made his way in the world. He began as assistant with Phoenix Pomeroy, a county surveyor and city engineer, who subsequently turned his instruments and work over to Mr. Gaffey, who occupied the position until 1886. Mr. Gaffey also conducted a livery business from 1882 to 1886, having traded a farm for a barn and stock in Winchester, Indiana. In 1886 Mr. Gaffey came to Kansas, looked over the country, worked five months for the city of Parsons, and was engaged at Pittsburg, Erie, and other points, until January 19, 1889. He was then appointed to his present position as city engineer, succeeding Mr. Courtney.

Mr. Gaffey was united in marriage with Eliza Brooks, a daughter of Milton and Amanda (Bell) Brooks, who was born near Richmond, Indiana, in 1859. The wedding ceremony, which has a touch of romance about it, occurred while the young lady was attending college at Danville, Indiana. At the dinner hour, the young couple were made one, after which the bride resumed her studies. Six children were born to Mr. Gaffey and his estimable wife, namely: Narcissa; Troy M.; Edna; Willie, deceased; Margaret; and Jonas S.

Mrs. Gaffey's parents are dead. She was the third in a family of eight children, as follows: William, who died in infancy; Ada, Mrs. Dr. Leslie Deweese, of Indianapolis, Indiana; Eliza; David, a railway mail-clerk, of Indiana; Charles, a railroad engineer, residing at Moberly, Missouri; Belle, who is single, and resides with the family of Dr. Deweese; Frank, a railroad conductor in Texas; and Howard, a farmer in Indiana.

Mr. Gaffey has a fine home at 1714 Crawford avenue, and also owns another house near by, which he rents. He also buys and feeds horses at his private barn. He has a successful trade, and is greatly pleased with his home. Politically, he has always acted with the Republicans, having cast his first vote for President Rutherford B. Hayes. Fraternally, Mr. Gaffey is a member of the M. W. of A., of Parsons; he was formerly a member of the K. of P. He and his wife are members of the Knights and Ladies of Security. In religious belief, Mr. Gaffey's parents were Catholics, but his views are liberal. Mrs. Gaffey is a Quaker, her people being identified with the Society of Friends.