THE VALLEY OF HEART's DELIGHT
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DENNIS LEAHY

Bio- Coast Counties
SURNAMES: CARNEY, LUNNEY

The present home of Mr. Leahy is far removed from the scenes of his boyhood, but his identification with California is so complete and his belief in her growth and prosperity so strong that he counts his removal to the new world as among the most fortunate acts of his long career.  He is of Irish birth, born in 1819, in County Tipperary, which was also the birthplace of his parents, Dennis and Mary (Carney) Leahy.  The father was a farmer throughout his active life, and both himself and wife spent their entire lives in their native land.  Of the four sons and two daughters born to them Dennis was next to the youngest child.  Judging from the time and place which surrounded his boyhood days it will readily be  understood why his educational advantages differed so widely from those enjoyed by the youth of to-day, but such as they were he made much of them.

Feeling the limitations which surrounded him in his native land, and at the same time hearing such glowing stories of the opportunities upon all sides which were but waiting to be claimed in free America, Mr. Leahy set sail from the homeland in 1850, bound for the Unites States,  reaching her shores in due season and locating in New york state.  Near Boyleston Center, Saratoga county, he engaged in farming for a few years, but in 1853 sought the Pacific coast, making the journey by way of the Isthmus of Panama. Being attracted to the Santa Clara valley on account of the exceptional fertility of its soil, he took up a tract of one hundred and twenty-five acres on Senter road, three miles south east of San Jose, and through all the changing years that have since elapsed he has had no desire to change his abiding place.  The land was first devoted to general farming and the raising of grain, but as time passed on and it was found fruits could be raised to better advantage, Mr. Leahy set out what proved to be the nucleus of a thriving orchard, making a specialty of prunes, and today his orchard ranks favorable with any in the county, although it now comprises only twenty-one aces, a large part of the land having been sold.

While making his home in Boyleston Center, N. Y., Mr. Leahy was united in marriage with  Miss Mary Ann Lunney, who was a native of the Empire state, but who died in California.  Seven children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Leahy, but of the number two have died, three daughters and two sons still surviving.  Though Mr. Leahy is now between eighty and ninety years of age, he enjoys a fair degree of health, and his daughter Minnie, now Mrs. Griffin, who makes her home with her aged father, is tenderly caring for him and assisting in the management of the ranch.  In casting his vote Mr. Leahy has always favored Democratic candidates, and in his religious views is a Catholic.

transcribed by cdf-
History of the State of California of Biographical Record of Coast Counties, California- Guinn, 1904- page 439

[NOTE- from researcher 
kegan@hotmail.com
According to his naturalization application, Dennis was naturalized in 1846, so he would have had to have left Ireland by 1840 or so. Also, only three of five children survived to adulthood:Charles, Francis and Minnie (Mary Victorine), not five of seven as mentioned in the bio. 


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