Following the death of her mother from the Spanish Flu in 1919, she emigrated to America, joining her siblings Packie Joe and Eliza McDermott, in NYC. They joined a succession of cousins who also emigrated to New York around this time.
Paternal first cousins (McDermott) in the Elphin area included: Donaghy of Cloonybrennan, Kennedy of Tanseyfield, McCormack of Carrowkeel, and Hanly of Clooncullane.
Maternal first cousins (Brennan & Higgins) in the Drumlion / Croghan area included: Brennan of Canbo.
For 5 years, Ellen worked as a Nanny for a Jewish family (her sister Eliza working there as a cook). Packie Joe, bartending in the Bronx, got into bootlegging and later ran a Speakeasy. Eliza went on to work for the Bouvier Family (parents of Jackie Kennedy). Ellen loved America and planned to stay. However, her father, Edward McDermott (1865–1936) begged her to come home to care for him. (In return, he promised her the home farm in Scregg).
Back in Co. Roscommon, Ellen fell in love with Joe Barrett of Ballinvilla, gave up on America, and married in 1932. The couple first resided at Scregg where their first 3 children were born. When Joe inherited his family farm in Ballinvilla, the couple moved (just 2 townlands away). Feeling he needed it more, Ellen gave the home farm at Scregg to her youngest brother, Fergus McDermott. In the long thatch house at Ballinvilla, their two youngest children were born. The older ones have fond memories of the old house at Scregg (now an outbuilding at Feely's) as being "bright and clean, whitewashed inside and out".
|Date of Birth||17th Mar 1899||VIEW SOURCE|
|Date of Death||16th Feb 1983||VIEW SOURCE|
|Associated Building (s)||St. Michael's Church, Drumlion, Ballinvilla townland, Canbo townland, St. Michael's Church, Croghan|
|Mother (First Name/s and Maiden)||Mary Anne Higgins (1862-1919) of Scregg DRUMLION||VIEW SOURCE|
|Father (First Name/s and Surname)||Edward McDermott (1865–1936) of Cloonybrennan ELPHIN||VIEW SOURCE|
|Townland born||Scregg, Drumlion, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co. Roscommon||VIEW SOURCE|
|Place & Date of Baptism||St. Michael's Church, Drumlion||VIEW SOURCE|
|Number of Siblings||4|
|Names of Siblings||EMIGRATED TO USA: Patrick Joseph McDermott b.1892 NJ, USA| Mary Elizabeth McDermott b.1894 NYC, USA|
|Names of Siblings||REMAINED IN IRELAND: John McDermott (1895-1934) bachelor of SCREGG | Ferghus McDermott (1897-1945) of SCREGG||VIEW SOURCE|
|Spouse (First Name/s and Maiden/Surname)||Joseph M. Barrett (1905-1977) of Ballinvilla CROGHAN||VIEW SOURCE|
|Number of Children||5|
|Names of Children|
|Occupation||USA: Children's Nanny NYC | IRL: Farmer & Homemaker|
|Place of Death||Ballinvilla, Croghan, Boyle, Co. Roscommon||VIEW SOURCE|
|New Type||Paternal GRANDPARENTS: Julia McDermott (1836–1888) & John McDermott (1831–1896) of Cloonybrennan ELPHIN||VIEW SOURCE|
|New Type||Maternal GRANDPARENTS: Patrick Higgins & Eliza Brennan of Canbo CROGHAN Eliza Brennan (1838–1920) and Patt Higgins (1839-1880) of farm #9 in Scregg.|