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Adam Shirey
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Birth: Jul. 31, 1941
Death: Aug., 1974
Philadelphia County
Pennsylvania, USA

Adam Shirey was the first husband of Dorothy Joan Storkey. Joan lived with Adam's sister for a while, and met Adam when she went to visit Adam's sister in Philadelphia's Hahnemann Hospital in 1960. The couple married at Joan's parents' home, and would have no living children. They might have made an amusing-looking couple; Joan was tall, about 5'9", while Adam was 5'5". Their marriage was not long-lived and they divorced.

He was the son of Adam Franklin Shirey (Aug 5, 1917 - June 21, 1982) and Rita Long Shirey (Jan 13, 1919 - March 9, 1995). Though Adam and some siblings had not yet been born, the family appears on the 1940 census in Pennsylvania's Schuylkill County in Shenandoah Borough. Adam Sr. (age 23) works as a laborer at a coal company, Rita is 21, and they have one son living at home. The couple reports living in the same house in 1935, so were together, apparently, at least by the time they were 18 and 16.

The family lived in hard circumstances. Adam's parents were both troubled, and they had five children in six years, not all surviving. Ultimately there were three children, Adam and one brother and one sister.

Young Adam's family could not hold together; at least one of the children was taken from the home by authorities. Adam was raised primarily in Catholic protectories for children. At one time, Adam pursued a career as a horse jockey in Florida. For part of his life, he was a successful businessman in the upholstery business. Sadly, Adam wrestled many personal demons and left us while he was rather young. He died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania either August 15 or 16, 1974, and was interred on August 19, 1974.

Adam's resting place in Westminster Cemetery, Belmont lot 539 bears no stone, nor does that of his father, who is just next to him. The plots, left to right are 2, 1, and 3. Adam is 1 and his father (also named Adam, interred June 24, 1982) is in 3. For reference, Plot 2 is occupied by a gentleman who does have a stone, William W. Mount. Adam's mother, Rita Long Shirey, passed away in Baltimore in 1995. Sadly, Adam did not know either of his parents well.

Around the time that Adam passed, Adam's ex-wife Joan had an odd experience while waitressing at the historic Kitty Knight House Inn & Restaurant on the banks of the Sassafras River in Georgetown, Maryland. One very busy evening, she saw Adam in the dining room. Because of taking care of customers on that very busy night, she simply waved and smiled and he returned the same. It was only later she found out that he could not have been there, because he had died just before this.

Adam's mother Rita seems to have been the daughter of Robert and Mary (or Marie) V. Long of Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, and sister to Robert, John, Matthew, Margaret, Florence C, May, Veronica C, Joseph C, Charles and Eugene T and Robert. She was the second youngest child on the 1930 census of Mahanoy.

Adam's Shirey grandparents were Adam Shirey (b. 1883) and Emma Shirey (b. 1885 or 1887). I believe Emma's maiden name was Blackwell. They couple is listed in the 1910 census in Schuylkill County Shenandoah Boro at 211 Huckleberry Way, with children Barbara age 4 and Lillian age 2. Emma the mother reports having had 3 children of whom 2 are alive. Adam the father works for the water company.

The couple is later listed on the 1920 census in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, in Mahanoy Township as having children Barbara, Arthur, Emma, Ethel and Adam. Lillian is no longer present, and there is no daughter her age. Adam the father works in an anthracite mine.

Trying to find our subject's grandpa on the 1900 census proves difficult, even when going through all Shirey families in Schuylkill County, and looking at all teenaged boys named Adam in Pennsylvania that year. Interestingly, there is a boy close to the right age in Schuylkill County by the name of Charles Shirey, who is the adopted son of Adam Maurer, leading one to wonder if perchance he took on his adopted dad's name. Ditto a Grafius Shirey, who is a son of Adam Shirey in Jersey Shore, Lycoming County- but this man is able to be accounted for in later years, so we must cross him off the list and leave this question for another day.

Still, it is possible our subject's grandpa belonged to the family below, but that is yet to be proven. There is an Adam Shirey listed among the children of "Henry son of Samuel" which might be our subject Adam's father Adam or another of his family. With no dates presently this could be hard to prove, but is left here for any future genealogists who might want to explore the link. Below is an excerpt from the 1915 book "Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania" by J.H. Beers & Co, Beers (J. H.) and Company, Chicago, publishers.

"JOHN SHIREY is a trusted foreman at the Maple Hill colliery in Mahanoy township, one of the most important workings in the Schuylkill district, where some one thousand, six hundred men and boys of the region find regular employment. The nature of his duties has brought him into personal touch with most of them, and in his long connection with operations at the collieries he has acquired a wide acquaintance among mine workers especially, though his friends are by no means limited to his fellow employees.

Mr. Shirey belongs to a pioneer family of Schuylkill county, his greatgrandfather having settled here at an early day. His children were: George, Daniel, Samuel, Mary and Margaret. Samuel Shirey, the grandfather, was born near Cumbola, Schuylkill county, and died at Bear Ridge, this county. He is buried at Port Carbon. He was engaged in the timber business. His family, Henry, Joseph, Edward and Angeline, are all deceased.

Henry Shirey, son of Samuel, was born at Cumbola, and in his early life began railroading, following that line for many years. When about thirty- eight years old he located at Shenandoah, this county, and thereafter did outside work at the mines, being employed at the Maple Hill colliery at the time of his death. His widow, Mrs. Barbara (Roop) Shirey, now (1915) over seventy years of age, is living at St. Nicholas, Schuylkill county. They had the following children: John, Adam, Reuben, Wilfred (who is in the West), George, Sevilla (of Philadelphia), Mary (of Maple Hill) and Elizabeth (who died young).

John Shirey was born Jan. 1, 1863, at Cumbola, Schuylkill county, and had ordinary public school advantages in early boyhood. When nine years old he had his start at mining in the usual way, picking slate at the breaker in the employ of Lewis Slitter, at Wradesville, this county. He was also at the East Mine shaft, doing outside work, and later came to Shenandoah, where he was chief runner and gig boss at the Indian Ridge colliery. His next work was at the Knickerbocker colliery, whence he came to the Maple Hill colliery to take the position of assistant outside foreman. He held it continuously for fourteen years following, until transferred to the Hammond colliery as outside foreman, being there three years, and similarly engaged at the Knickerbocker colliery for three years. In 1910 he returned to the Maple Hill colliery, where he had been assigned to his present duties as outside foreman. These extensive workings, with the large force required, demand expert supervision, and the utmost proficiency on the part of the foremen who oversee operations, and the very fact that a man is chosen for such responsibilities shows that he has proved his worth and has an established reputation for reliability. Mr. Shirey is a valued citizen of Shenandoah, and an esteemed associate of his fellow members in Mahanoy City Lodge, No. 695, B. P. O. Elks; Washington Camp No. 112, P. O. S. of A., of Shenandoah; and Lodge No. 515, I. O. O. F., of Shenandoah. He is also a member of the German Reformed Church at Shenandoah.

Mr. Shirey was united in marriage with Elizabeth Callihan, daughter of John Callihan, of Frackville, Pa. They have no children."

Family links: 
  Dorothy Joan Storkey Andrews (1942 - 1992)*
*Calculated relationship
No marker.
Westminster Cemetery
Bala Cynwyd
Montgomery County
Pennsylvania, USA
Plot: Belmont Lot 539, plot 1, to the right of Wm. W. Mount
Created by: sr/ks
Record added: May 22, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 37373927
Adam Shirey
Added by: sr/ks
Adam Shirey
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Added by: Big Ern
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