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 Katherine Mary <I>Norton</I> Langan

Katherine Mary Norton Langan

Jersey City, Hudson County, New Jersey, USA
Death 10 Nov 1942 (aged 48)
Jersey City, Hudson County, New Jersey, USA
Burial Jersey City, Hudson County, New Jersey, USA
Plot Grave 16, Section H, Block G
Memorial ID 7604900 · View Source
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Katherine Mary Norton (1894-1942) Langan, was a school teacher in Jersey City, New Jersey who died in a mental hospital. (b. June 30, 1894; Jersey City, Hudson County, New Jersey, USA - d. November 10, 1942, 4:20 pm; Hudson County Hospital, Jersey City, Hudson County, New Jersey, USA)

Katherine Mary Norton, Kitty Norton.

Patrick J. Norton (1858-1905) and Sarah Jane Carr (1866-1950).

Katherine was born on June 30, 1894 in Jersey City, Hudson County, New Jersey. She was one of five children, out of which only three lived to adulthood.

Thomas Patrick Norton I (1891-1968) who married Mary Margaret Burke (1890-1949) aka May Burke, and after her death he married her half-sister, Josephine Burke; James Joseph Norton I (1892-1961) who married Helen Marie Maher (1895-1974) aka Eeenie Maher; Sarah Francis Norton (1896) who died as an infant of acute pachymeningitis; and Mary Norton (1898) who died as an infant of acute meningitis.

Jersey City, New Jersey:
In the year 1900 she was living at 101 Bright Street in Jersey City and by 1910 the family had moved to 31 Germania Avenue. During World War I the name of Germania Avenue was changed to Liberty Avenue.

On July 28, 1930 she married James Patrick Langan I (1889-1975). James was an Army sergeant during World War I and a newspaper pressman after the war.

They had three children: James Patrick Langan II (1931- ), John Bernard Langan I (1934- ) and Kathryn Anne Langan (1937- ).

Katherine was put through teacher's college by her brother, Thomas Patrick Norton I (1891-1968). He became the man of the house at age 14 when his father died. Tom went to work for the railroad and became the source of income for the household. Katherine became a school teacher in the Jersey City public school system, as were her two sister-in-laws, Helen Marie Maher (1895-1974) aka Eenie Maher, and Mary Margaret Burke (1890-1949) aka May Burke.

Roman Catholic:
She was a member of the Catholic Daughters of America (CDA) and the Holy Rosary Society. Her mother forbade her from attending the wedding of her nephew, Thomas Patrick Norton II (1920-2011) on October 03, 1942 because Tom was marrying a Protestant, but, she watched the wedding from outside the church. She wrote Tom a letter telling him she saw the ceremony from outside the church.

She died just five weeks later, on November 10, 1942. Her death is a bit of a mystery, Thomas Patrick Norton II (1920-2011), her nephew, says that she died while they were trying to clear her sinuses with a hot needle. Ann Elizabeth O'Malley (1933- ) remembers talk in the family that she had become very depressed.

Psychological exhaustion:
Her death certificate says that she died from "psychological exhaustion". Unless her medical records are recovered, the circumstances of her death will remain a mystery.

It appears that she was hospitalized for her depression and that she died at the hospital. It is possible that they performed an operation to relieve her depression and she died during the operation.

Funeral notice:
Jersey Journal on November 12, 1942: "Langan - On November 10, 1942, Catherine M. (nee Norton), of 63 Clendenny Avenue, beloved wife of James P.; devoted mother of James, John and Kathryn Ann, and daughter of Mrs. Sarah Norton; sister of Thomas and James. Relatives and friends, also Court Greenville No. 450, Catholic Daughters of America, and Holy Rosary Society, are invited to attend funeral November 14 at 9 a.m. Solemn high mass, 10 a.m., Our Lady of Victories Church, interment Holy Name Cemetery. Arrangements by Houghton Funeral Home."

She was buried at Holy Name Cemetery in Jersey City on November 14, 1942.

Memories about Katherine Norton:
Anne Elizabeth O'Malley (1933- ) remembers hearing her mother talking in the kitchen in 1943 about Katherine to another family member. Anne was nine years old and remembers them talking about Katherine's bout of depression.

Memories about Katherine Norton:
Richard Arthur Norton writes on April 17, 2017: "When my dad told me that she died from having a needle stuck into her sinuses I blurted out "sounds like a lobotomy". It was only when I ordered her death certificate did I see that she died in a mental institution. In 1941, at age 23, Rosemary Kennedy, the oldest sister of President John F. Kennedy, underwent a prefrontal lobotomy. So the time frame fits for them experimenting on her to relieve her depression. The depression brought on by Thomas Patrick Norton II marrying a Protestant woman, whose wedding she observed, but was forbidden to attend. Sarah Carr forbade her from attending. My dad said she wrote him a nice note saying that she watched from outside the church."

Katherine Mary Norton (1894-1942) was a grand aunt of Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ). She was the godmother of Thomas Patrick Norton (1920-2011).

Researched and written by Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) starting on June 21, 2003 for Findagrave. Updated on March 22, 2017 with information from her funeral notice and memories of Richard Arthur Norton.


Family Members






  • Created by: Richard Arthur Norton (1958- )
  • Added: 21 Jun 2003
  • Find A Grave Memorial 7604900
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Katherine Mary Norton Langan (30 Jun 1894–10 Nov 1942), Find A Grave Memorial no. 7604900, citing Holy Name Cemetery, Jersey City, Hudson County, New Jersey, USA ; Maintained by Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) (contributor 46580804) .