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Out common forefather was David SHUNICK (or SHINNICK, or SHUNNICK). He came to this country in 1851, landing in Boston, Massachusetts. With him came six sons: Edmund, Richard, Morris, John, David, and Thomas. They went first to Fletcher, Vermont in the same year. Edmund was already married and the father of one son, David, who was born in County Cork, Ireland. The rest were unmarried.

David was born about 1796 and died 14 August 1879 in Spring Grove Township, Warren County, Illinois. His wife was Mary LEE, but little more is known about her at this time. There is no indication she ever came to Illinois. Search for the passenger list had proven unfruitful so far, so it is not known if she came with the family. Ireland was in the midst of a potato famine, which killed many thousands of people, so she may have, died in Ireland previous to her family’s emigration.

David is said to have been buried in Galesburg, Knox County, Illinois although there is no record of it. The cemetery experienced some flooding years ago which washed away many of the markers. lie is, however, listed as a taxpayer and voter in Warren County, Illinois in the "Past and Present of Warren County, Illinois" published Chicago: H. F. Kett & Co. in 1877. He had settled on Section 13, P. 0. Gerlaw, and owned 240 acres of land. tie was Catholic and a democrat. The family had established their residence in Warren County, Spring Grove Township, about 1855.

Although it is not known at this time the place of birth of the six sons of David Shunick, the marker of Thomas and Ellen (Mahoney) Shunick in the St. Mary’s Cemetery, Monmouth, Illinois gives their place of birth as Killeagh, County Cork, Ireland. IL is possible the rest of them were born there, also.

Mr. Joseph Barry, who is the local historian for the parish of Killeagh, County Cork, Ireland, indicated there were no SHUNICK/SHINNICK graves in Killeagh. The parish priest there promised Helen Laughlin he would send her records of SHUNICK marriages, baptisms, deaths, etc. which he located in his church records, but no information has been forthcoming so far.

I have written to the local SHINNICK families, and both can trace their families to County Cork: one from Midleton, which is very near Killeagh, and the other from Ballingerry, a few miles away.

A "Griffiths Valuation" of the Parish of Kilcredan, township of the same name, County Cork, Ireland (1846 to 1853) lists a David SHANNIG (another spelling of the name) and also a Laurence LEE. The Parish of Kilmacdonough, Township of Ballymacoda shows an Edmond SHUNNICK owning a house and garden. Kilcredan is a village about eleven miles south of Killeagh, and Ballymacoda is also nearby. This may be the origin of our SHUNICK/SHINNICK family.

Another point of interest, a family story has it that the SHUNICK family is somehow connected to Kit Carson, frontier scout. This remains to be proven. 

            Edmund Shunick

Edmund Shunick was the eldest child of David Shunick’s sons. He was born about 1824 in County Cork, Ireland. He had married Hanora CROFT before coming to America and was the father of one son, David, born circa 1849 in Ireland. Hanora was born in 1826 and died in 1902. They were the parents of ten children: David, Margaret, Mary, Hannah, William, Ellen, Morris, Nora, Julia, and Edmund.

Margaret and Mary were born in Fletcher, Vermont in 1852 and 1854 respectively. The rest were born in Warren County, Illinois: Hannah in 1856, William in 1858, Ellen in July 1860, Morris in 1862, Nora in 1866, Julia in 1868, and Edmund in 18’71.

Not a great deal in known about this family. David is said to have married Annie BURNS. Ellen and Julia married NOONAN brothers, James Michael. and John. Edmond was known as "Cameron Ed" and lived in Cameron, Illinois at the time of his father’s death (1914). He and his wife used to come to Monmouth to church. They had no children.

Ellen Shunick and Mike NOONAN had two daughters: Nora, who was unmarried; and Florence, who married Sylvester HELLHAKE. They still live in Galesburg. They also had two sons, one was named Fred. He went to South America when a young man. The other’s name has been forgotten.

Julia and John NOONAN had two daughters, one was Kate who married Henry JOHNSON. They also had two children, Mary Louise and a boy. The other daughter, Louise, married Clarence PYLE and lived in Burlington. Their son, Freddie, age six was killed while crossing a street.

At the Monmouth Public Library, we discovered a clipping of the article "Do You Remember Away Back Then’?" in which appeared the obituary of Edmund Shunick: 

"Edmund Shunick died at the home of his daughter, Mrs.’ John M. WELSH, in Galesburg, March 17, 1914, senility being given as the cause of his passing. He was born in Ireland in 1822, came to America in 1851, and in 1863 bought a farm near Alexis, where he lived for many years, and later moved to Alexis. He married Miss ZORA CROFT (should be Nora) in Ireland in 1858 (should be 1848), and to this union eleven children were born, six of whom were living when the father died. They were: Dave Shunick of Alexis, Ed Shunick of Cameron, Mrs. James Noonan and Mrs. John Noonan of Monmouth, Mrs. Pat Conroy of Bloomington, and Mrs. John Welsh of Galesburg. He was a member of the Catholic church at Alexis and the funeral was held at that church with burial in the Alexis cemetery."

Hanora (Croft) Shunick is also buried there.

"The Past and Present of Warren County, Illinois" Voters and Taxpayers of Warren County (Pg. 316) shows Edmund, farmer, Section 12, P. 0. Alexis, democrat, Catholic, 360 acres; born in Ireland.

I found a clipping of the obituary of Mrs. Edmund SHUNICK. It did not give a date of death, and there is no date written on it. It says:

"Mrs. Edmund Shunick died suddenly Friday afternoon at the family residence in Alexis. She had appeared to be in about her usual health during the day and Mr. Shunick was absent in the afternoon. The granddaughter, Miss Nora Shunick, went in between 4 and 5 o’clock and found her lying on the bed and dead. She might have been dead for two hours or more, when discovered. It is thought an attack of heart. trouble was the cause.

"Mrs. Shunick was about 75 years old and she and her husband were old settlers in the Alexis neighborhood and highly respected by all who knew them. Seven children and the husband are left to mourn her death."

            (Hanora died in 1902).

            David Shunick

 Little is known about David Shunick except he was born in February of 1831 and was baptized in Ireland on the 29th of May 1831. The baptismal information came form Father John Thornhill of  Youghal in County Cork, Ireland. 

If you believe you are related to this family, look at my home page and email me from there and I can put you in contact with a descendent of David Shunick

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