LaSalle County


Michael J. Flaherty, the genial and courteous postmaster and merchant of Baker, LaSalle county, is well and favorably known throughout the county as a man of energy and push whose residence in this state has been marked by an industry and energy that have brought him to the road to prosperity. He was born in Boston, Massachusetts, December 28, 1842, and is a son of Michael and Bridget (Flaherty) Flaherty. Both parents were born in Ireland and were there married, coming to the United States in 1831 and settling in Boston, where the mother died in 1852, and four years later the father and five of the children came west and located at Serena, this county. He purchased land, which was taken in charge by his son Martin and converted into valuable property. The children of Michael Flaherty were two sons and four daughters: Martin, deceased; Sarah, deceased; Margaret; Ellen; Kate and Michael. The father died in Serena in 1888 and his remains were taken back to the east and placed beside his wife at Bunker Hill. Martin Flaherty was a successful man of business and well liked by those who knew him. He resided at Serena and was a supervisor for fourteen years, moving to Ottawa, where he was again elected supervisor. He was a Democrat in his political affiliation and died at Ottawa in 1892, aged sixty-six years. He was unmarried.

Michael J. Flaherty remained behind to attend school in Boston, when his father and family came west, in 1856, but in the course of about two years he followed them to LaSalle county. He worked on the farm until 1893 and then lived in Leland five years more, when he came to Baker and opened a store of general merchandise. He was appointed the postmaster of Leland in 1893 and served four years and a half, and during that time was elected the president of the town board. He was appointed to the office of postmaster in Baker in December, 1897, and the following year was elected a justice of the peace. He is one of the workers among the Republican ranks, and renders the party valuable aid in their local elections. He is a member of the Roman Catholic church and belongs to the Modern Woodmen of America, the Knights of the Globe, the Home Forum and the Foresters. In 1872 Mr. Flaherty married Kate Calvy, who died seven years later, leaving a son, Martin, who died one year afterward. He was married a second time, in 1881, to Miss Eliza A. DeBolt, a daughter of John DeBolt, one of the oldest settlers of LaSalle county, who came here as early as 1832. The union of Mr. and Mrs. Flaherty has been blessed by the birth of four children: Martin (1st), who died in his seventh year, Harold, Martin (2d) and Mary.

Extracted 13 Jun 2019 by Norma Hass from Biographical and Genealogical Record of LaSalle County, Illinois, published in 1900, volume 2, pages 638-639.

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