Jannet Walsh

Today marks 88 years in family house

In Blogging, Family, Genealogy, iphone, Minnesota, Minnesota Native Daughter, Murdock, Religion on September 30, 2010 at 12:31 am


By Jannet Walsh
Murdock, Minnesota

My grandparents moved into the house 88 years ago today.

I was trying to figure out why I was feeling so complete in Murdock. It’s really pretty simple as my family has been here for at least 133 years and has lived in the same house since September 30, 1922.

My grandmother Mary Jannet “Jennie” Foley and my grandfather, Martin J. Walsh Sr., known as “Mart”, see photo above from the 1950s, were married at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church, in Murdock on Nov. 4, 1915. (They were assigned pew number 12 or about the fifth pew back on the left side from altar at the church.) They moved to the current family home located on the west end of town on Sept. 30 1922, according to an interview on Aug. 12, 1976 by Sister Julitta Walsh, a religious sister and relative. The land was formerly owned by an old four mill. Part of the mill foundation was used for the present home. The house was built in 1917 by John Murphy.

On Dec. 7, 1924 my father Martin J. Walsh Jr. was born in the house. I remember hearing the story as a child and always wondered how it could be as babies are born in hospitals. I was at my father’s side when he died on Dec. 6, 2008 in St. Luke Hospital, in Duluth, Minnesota. A few days before his death, his final words to me were, “I love you.”


Audio recorded on the iPhone 4.

It’s been just over a month after I moved to Murdock from Florida, arriving on August 17, 2010 in Dublin Township, located southwest of Murdock, about 7:30 p.m., near the location of the family farm. The children of Steve and Lisa Collins were running and waving their arms at the side of the road when my car turned into their farm, seeming just like a scene out of movie. My marathon travel of four days and three nights by car from Florida was complete, a total of 1,766 miles.

My arrival in Dublin Township has significance as my grandfather, Martin J. Walsh Sr., was born in Dublin Township on Feb. 19, 1887, in section 32, in a house that was later moved from DeGraff by my great-grandfather Michael Walsh, born in 1812 in Kilkenny, Ireland. (The obituary of Michael Walsh notes he arrived in Dublin Township in 1877 and homesteaded 160 acres in section 32, township 120, range 38.)

The Scared Heart Cemetery is filled with my relatives, including my brother David Walsh, living only short time in 1962. My father Martin J. Walsh Jr., grandparents and great-grandparents and others have their eternal resting places not far from the family house. Murdock continues to mark each day with the noon and 10 p.m. whistle, serving as marking times to eat and sleep, along with church bells on the top of hour, historically ringing to mark times to pray during the day from Scared Heart. The bells and whistles are a steady cadence, keeping the 303 residents in daily step for both body and soul.

Life may appear to be slow in Murdock, but it is steady and appearing unending. My family continues to have deep roots in a land my great-grand father Michael Walsh moved to 133 years ago. Simply said, I am home in Murdock.

Links encouraged!

Native Minnesotan Jannet Walsh is a blogger, columnist, journalist, photojournalist, terrier owner, hula hooper and more! Contact her at jannetwalsh@gmail.com. Click here to view full biography. View her other blog at http://jannetwalsh.blogspot.com/.
Read other Area Voices.

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  1. It sounds like you really are home. Welcome back!

  2. this is great stuff. I feel connected to your family. Like the way it is written and oral both with the You Tube video

  3. That is a great story and I am sure it is nice to be back in your home country! I am a Willmar native and my Grandfather William (Bill) McCarty farmed for years in Louristan Township just south of Dublin Township. Was on the corner of highway 40 where Sid’s store use to be. We had a lot of relatives in the Murdock area with last names of McCann and Walsh. Have to wonder if there is some family ties. Regards…..

    michaelgunter8@msn.com

  4. Wow! What an awesome blog! Murdock is also my hometown. And reading your blog is so relatable for me. I feel such a connection to the town and its amazing citizens. To outsiders its merely an inconvenient 30mph stretch on HWY 12, but for the few of us who were fortunate enough to grow up there it is a magical place. Life has taken me elsewhere, but I still feel Murdock pulling me home. Coming out the west end of Kerkhoven I always seem to involunteerily speed up a little faster til I see that silver elevator coming into view as I pass the cemetary where my father rests. My family has some history in Murdock and my mother still lives in our house, but I have no detailed record of it. However I look forward to the day when I can take my daughters around town and show them all the special landmarks that will become our family history. Thank you for the blog, I will definately be watching for more from you in the future. And enjoy Murdock!!

  5. Wonderful story Jannet! Welcome to Murdock. My mother lived just east of town and I too have many relatives at Sacred Heart cemetary. 22 years ago we moved here here to raise our family and never looked back! Murdock is home and always will be! Glad you are here!

  6. Hi

    I am your Cousin. My Grandfather was Michael Francis Walsh, Martins brother. My Dad, Bill, graduated with your Dad. I was born on Aug 7th and my youngest son was born on Nov. 4th.!! My Dad died the same year yours did. My maternal grandparents lived next door to Martin & Jenny when my mother was a child.

    I have been doing a fair amount of Genealogical research on the Walsh family with the help of a cousin.

  7. Forgot to say that I lived in Murdock until I was 8 years old. I remember Gr Uncle Martin and his card playing at my Uncle Larry’s bar and restaurant in Murdock. My Grandpa Walsh, Martin, and a host of relatives and friends would play Whist in the bar everyday. Our Great Uncle Tom Walsh, who had fingers missing was a favorite of mine……he had nicknames for everyone and LOVED to make us laugh.

  8. […] Some people say I look like my grandmother in the photo. The family would just look at the photo and would comment how beautiful she was as a young lady. Learn more about my grandparents at another blog post. […]

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