In 1850 the Catholic Church in America was recruiting for priests to come to West Virginia to tend to the miners and railroad workers living in the area. Dennis Brennan, a recent graduate of All Hallows Seminary in Dublin, answered the call along with several of his classmates. He travelled to the USA in August, 1859 along with his sister, Maria Brennan and settled in the town of Weston, West Virginia, beginning a 30 year career of visiting his far flung flock on horseback or by railroad. As his health began to fail he served in the diocese of Iowa and in Wheeling, West Virginia as an Associate Pastor. He died in 1889.
His sister Maria married another Irish immigrant, John Hussey from Roscommon, also living in Weston working for a firm of attorneys who were employed by the Northwestern Virginia Railroad and then later on his own farm. They had six children, almost all of whom left the farm for more industrial work. I don't know if Father Brennan had any siblings other than his sister but they remained very close and he performed the marriage ceremony with Mr. Hussey.
|Date of Birth||1823|
|Date of Death||2nd Jul 1889|