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Donovan James born circa 1810 Ireland and his son, Donovan, James (c 1839- ) Ireland, City Alderman, 147 and 346 Van Brunt - liquor

346 Van Brunt between Sulivan and King west side, frame building in 1886

Birth of James Donovan senior: c 1810 Ireland

In 1892 he was said to have been a Connaught man.

Marriage: ??

Occupation: Cartman



  1. Ann born Ireland circa 1837

  2. James (Jimmy) c 1839 Ireland

    In the 1860 census with his father James. Occupations: cooper 1860, 1865

    1870 Liquor dealer list: Donovan, J., 346 Van Brunt

    Marriage: Margaret Donovan born c 1844

    Children: Lizzie Donovan, Mary Donovan, Margaret (Maggie) Donovan

    1865, Donovan, James, cooper, H Van Brunt n William

    1868 James Donavon was secretary for the South Brooklyn Democratic Association of the 12th Ward

    1869 James Donovan was an office of the 12th ward Democratic Association which was meeting at McClellan Hall on Van Brunt near King.

    Not listed 1870 Brooklyn directory.

    On the 1886 map 346 Van Brunt is a frame house in the middle of the block on the west side of Van Brunt between King and Sullivan and 147 is above Hamilton.

    1870 Census: James Donovan 31, cooper, $1,800, Ireland, Margaret Donovan 26, Lizzie Donovan 8, Mary Donovan 6, Margaret Donovan 3, Mary Cuddy 16

    1871 James Donovan "147" Van Brunt Liquors, home Sullivan n Van Brunt.

    1872 James Donovan 346 Van Brunt, liquor, H [home] Sullivan n Van Brunt

    1872: January 15, 12th ward Democrats met at 346 Van Brunt, McClellan Hall, near Sullivan.

    1873 James Donovan ran for Alderman of the 12th ward in 1873. He ran again in 1875.

    1874 Donovan, James, Ald, 12th Ward, "cooper" 384 Van Brunt, h 100 Sullivan

    1875: Van Brunt??? brick, $8,000, James Donovan, age 36, alderman, born Ireland, no wife, Elizabeth age 13, daughter, Mary age 11, daughter, Margaret daughter age 9, Mary Cuddy age 20, niece same building as Anne M Costello, age 38, who owned the building. See O'Brien

    1877: March 14, 12th Wards Democratic Citizens' Association held a meeting at Fitzpatrick's Hall at No 346 Van Brunt street.

    In January 1877 James Donovan was an alderman of the 12th ward.

    In October 1877 James Donavan was running for Alderman of the 12th ward.

    In December 1877: Alderman James Donovan, a Democrat elected by the Democrats, voted with the Republicans for president of the Board of Alderman. Their choice did not win.

    "members of the wealth, culture and refinement of the Heights courted the society of little "Jimmy" Donovan of the Twelfth Ward. When he spoke they listened with the greatest attention, if he frowned and refused to talk, they appeared to be unutterably grieved and sad, but not by any means angry. The applauded what he called his "Independence" and fawned upon and flattered him so openly and frequently that the wonder is, he did not as the boys say, "tumble" to their game. At the very time these high toned gentlemen from the Heights were metaphorically licking "Jimmy" Donovan's boots, they were at the same time cutting the ground from under his feet."
    After the election The Republicans "dropped" Dolovan.

    1878: Ex-alderman Donovan had a proviitable businees "again making barrels" in the 12th ward.

    1879: June New York Times, "Ex-alderman, James Donovan received the nomination of the Boss McLaughlin branch of the Democracy" in the 12th Ward of Brooklyn

    1879: Four saloon keepers were backing Donvovan for alderman in 1879. A reporter from the Eagle went to Van Brunt street to check out the situation. A German bake on Van Brunt street said he would not vote for Donovan:

    "Ven Mayor Havmyer vas puried, dot Donovan he vent do der funeral und he looked like ter tuyfel. Vy, he had on an old goat und a bear of drowsers dot looked like a meal zack. His undergoat gum way down pelow his overgoat und he was a regular specdacle. Ven he goes do der funeral of such a great man he ought to dress himzelf decently."
    James Donavon was referred to as "Jimmy" Donovan.

    1880 Census 100 Sullivan Street*: James Donovan age 40 cooper, Maggie age 17 daughter, Mary age 15, daughter, Lizzie age 11, daughter, Doughery, Anne, niece age 12, Minnie Fruman (?) age 5, niece.

    *On the 1886 map 100 Sullivan is indicated as a brick building on the north side of Sullivan just west of Van Brunt.

    In 1880 James Donovan was on the mayor's committee to collect for Irish Relief in the 12th ward.

    In 1880 Aldermn Donovan proposed that only US citizens be eligible for various licenses, including those for laundries run by foreign born Chinese.

    1881 James Donovan was among the delegates to the Irish Land League Convention which met in Chicago

    1881 Alderman Donovan lived at no. 100 Sullivan Street.

    1882 Alderman Donovan was responsible for having the sewers of the 12th Ward cleaned

    1884 Sept 5, New York Times, Alderman James Donovan, a popular Democrat in the 12th Ward, Brooklyn, announced his intention of supporting the Republican ticket.

    1884 Mayor Low vetoed a resolution to allow ex-alderman James Donovan to operate a line of coaches or wagonettes from Columbian and Ostego streets though Elizabeth and Richards streets, Hamilton ave, Woodhull, Union, henry and Middagh streets to Fulton streets.

    1886 Temperance Hall - ex-alderman James Donovan was nominated for Congress form the Second District

    1887: James Donovn was a city court clerk.

    1891 James Donovan was on the finance committee for the 12 Ward Democrats.

    1892: Ex-alderman James Donovan was an officer in Judge Clement's court.


    • When Alderman Patrick J Shannon of the fifth ward died in 1878 he was described as the owner of two liquor saloons.

    • McClellan hall was located at Van Brunt near Sullivan in 1869

    • McClellan Hall 346 Van Brunt 1872

    • 1886 Salvation Army Hall 346 Van Brunt held a prohibition meeting.


    1877 When is the Emperor of Russia like Alderman Donovan? Never.

  3. Mary c 1844 New York

1855: Ward 12, ED 1, frame $400, James "Dunivan", 45, Ireland, widow, cartman, in Brooklyn 10 years, Ann age 18, born Ireland, James age 16, born Ireland, Mary age 12, born Albany??

1860: Ward 12, James Donovan 50, cartman, $2,000, $200, born Ireland, James Donovan 21, $200, cooper, born Ireland, Mary Donovan 17, born New York

1864: James Donovan, Carman King near Van Brunt

1865: James Donovan, cooper, Van Brunt near William

1869: James Donovan Sullivan n Conover Brooklyn, New York Cooper Brooklyn, New York, City Directory, 1869, no James cartman.

1871: James Donovan liquors, 147 Van Brunt Home Sullivan near Van Brunt, Brooklyn, New York, City Directory, 1871, James Donovan, cooper, home Sullivan and Van Brunt, No James cartman listed

1874: DONOVAN JAMES, Ald, 12th ward, cooper, 348 Van Brunt, h 100 Sullivan

1879: Donovan, James cooper h 100 Sullivan

1881: DONOVAN, JAMES, Alderman 12th Ward, cooper, 102 Sullivan, h 100 Sullivan

1885: Donovan, James cooper, home 100 Sullivan

1890: Donovan, James court officer, 24 Court House home 129 William

1892: Ward 12, ED7, Williams Street, James Donovan age 55 born Ireland court officer, John Molloy, age 23, labourer, Augustus Molloy age 21, student, Mary Ann Donovan, age 45, born US, Mary Molloy age 16, Catherine Molloy 13, Mary E. Freeman age 15.

1886: Jimmy Donovan was defeated in his run for alderman by James McMahon, of 204 Richards street, who was born in Brooklyn December 12, 1852 of Irish decent. He was educated at Professors McCloskey's School in Red Hook and at St. Peter's Academy in Jersey City. He was a boiler maker, ship caulker and tinsmith.

Probate: No

Martin Donovan

Birth: Ireland Nov. 25, 1851 (per obit)

Immigration: As a young boy (obit)

Marriage: Margaret


  1. Thomas Donovan
  2. Anna Donovan
  3. Helen Donovan
  4. Maud Donovan
  5. Loretta Donovan
  6. May Donovan
  7. Albert Donovan
  8. Rose/Edna

Residence: 19 Fourth Place

Occupation: Saloon owner at Pioneer and Van Brunt.

Church: St Stephen's R. C.

1876 & 1877: Martin Donovan, 88 William Brooklyn liqour

1877, 1880, 1882, 1884: Donovan Martin, liquor 289 Van Brunt, home 108 William

1880: William street, Martin Donavan M 27 Ireland, liquor dealer, Wife Maggie Donavan F 19 New York, United States Son James Donavan M 3 New York, United States Sister-in-law Bridget Hay F 30 Ireland, laundry

1886: Martin Donovan, liquors, 108 Williams street, member of Grand Jury.

1886: Martin donovan, liquors, 289 Van Brunt, h. 19 4th place.

1892: Ward 6, ED 21, Donovan, Martin, age 40, Ireland, liquor dealer, Margaret, 30, James 12, Thomas, 11, Annie 9, Nellie, 5, Maud, 3 Loretta 1, Bridget Foley 48, Ireland servant.

1893: Thomas A Donovan, a plumber of 19 Fourth place, struck a undercover policeman during a altercation between a shop keeper and a girl he had accused of stealing two plates from his store. (BE, September 8, 1893)

1897: Plunkett & Donovan liquors 289 Van Brunt & 203 Court Plunkett, Jas, liquors, 289 Van Brunt & 536 Clinton h 21 4th pl (Lain Dir 1897-98)

1900: Mortgages, Donovan, M. to Bachman Brewing Co. 289 Van Brunt $4,575

1900: 4th place, Martin Donovan M 45 Ireland, immigrated 1868, liquor dealer, Wife Margaret Donovan F 39 New York, 11 children 7 living, Son Thomas Donovan M 19 New York, clerk, Daughter Anna Donovan F 18 New York, salesman, Daughter Hellen Donovan F 16 New York, Daughter Maud Donovan F 14 New York, Daughter Loretta Donovan F 11 New York, Daughter May Donovan F 7 New York, Son Albert Donovan M 3 New York, Sister Bridget Foley F 50 Ireland, immigrated 1868.

1902: Donovan, Martin, Saloon, 289 Van Brunt, home 19 Fourth Place (Proceedings of the Board of Aldermen of the City of New York By New York (N.Y.). Board of Aldermen)

1905: 4th place, Head Martin Donovan M 45y Ireland, liquor, Wife Margaret Donovan F 40y United States Son Thomas A Donovan M 22y United States, bartender, Daughter Anna E Donovan F 20y United States, school teacher, Daughter Helen Donovan F 18y United States Daughter Maud I Donovan F 17y United States Daughter Loretta V Donovan F 17y United States Daughter May F Donovan F 12y United States Son Bert Donovan M 6y United States Daughter Edna Donovan F 3y United States Servant Katrina Olsen F 19y Norway, servant, Lodger John Flood M 30y Norway, house smith

Death of Martin B Donovan: May 24, 1906 buried Holy Cross.

Probate: $6,500 encumbered for $5,100. His widow and 8 children (Thomas, Anna, Helen, Maud, Loretta, Mary, Albert and Rose residing at 19 4th place.

1908: Donovan, Thomas A 289 Van Brunt, (Directory of Liquor Tax Certificate Holders By New York (State). Dept. of Excise, New York (State). Excise Dept)

1910: 19 4th place, Margaret Donovan 48, widowed, Thomas A Donovan 29, liquor dealer, Anna G Donovan 27, teacher, Helen R Donovan 26, none, Maude I Donovan 23, teacher, Loretta V Donovan 20, May F Donovan 16, Albert M Donovan 12, R Edna Donovan 8

1920: Margeret Donovan 58, widow Thomas A Donovan 38, retail liquor, Anna G Donovan 35, teacher school, Helen R Donovan 33, none, Maude I Donovan 30, teacher school, Loretta V Donovan 26, teacher school, Mary F Donovan 25, teacher school, Albert M Donovan 22, clerk real estate Edna G Donovan 18

Death of Margaret Donovan: February 13, 1948

Margaret M., beloved wife of the later Martin B. Donovan; mother of Thomas A, Anna G. Helen R, Maud I, Mary F. Albert M sr. and Sister M Loretto Virginia, C. S. J. Funeral from her late residence 363 1st Street.
Buried Holy Cross.

1918: Donovan, Thomas A 289 Van Brunt, (Directory of Liquor Tax Certificate Holders By New York (State). Dept. of Excise, New York (State). Excise Dept)

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