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One soul, straight up, to go

doubtful%20guest.jpg In honor of All Souls' Day, also known as the Day of the Dead, I'd like to introduce a guy who died right here in the CrazyStable: Mr. Patrick M. Furlong. According to the New York Times, Furlong died at home here suddenly, of heart disease, at age 80, on August 23, 1928; at the time, the CrazyStable was owned by his daughter, Anna B. Murphy, who is the earliest owner of record we've been able to find and probably bought the place when it was new. (Oh, how we wish we knew what it looked like then!) According to his Times obit, he was survived as well by two other daughters, Mary and Jane.

Mr. Furlong has two things in common with your Stablemistress: One, he was fascinated by typography. Early in life he became an "electrotyper," and during the Grover Cleveland administration, he was the foreman of the Government Printing Office in Washington, DC. He was also the originator of the "curved electrotype" (I don't know what that is); at the time of his death here, he'd been retired for three years and was working on a book about electrotyping.

Second, Furlong was apparently a devout Catholic, active in the St. Vincent de Paul and Holy Name Societies, and his funeral was set to take place in our geographic parish of Holy Innocents in Flatbush. I don't know what room he died in, but he seems to have departed peacefully; the CrazyStable has been pristinely unhaunted during our two decades' residence. It feels like an honor to live in a place from which this upright typographer and co-religionist departed this life; may he, and all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God rest in peace.

Image: Edward Gorey, The Doubtful Guest

Posted on Friday, November 2, 2007 at 05:31PM by Registered CommenterBrenda from Brooklyn | Comments3 Comments

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Reader Comments (3)


Patrick Furlong was born in 1848/1849 in Massachusetts. His parents were born in Ireland. In 1910 he owned a home at 650 Halsey Street where he was widowed and residing with his daughters Mary b.1875, Jane b. 1882 and son Garrett b.1897. His occupation was Electrotyper for a printing company. By 1920, he lived on East 25th Street with Mary and Garrett. He must have moved in with daughter Anna Murphy somewhere between 1920 and his death in 1928. The Anna that I found was married to a Captain in the Fire Department and resided in what may be your house. I have the address of that location but will not disclose that on the blog. I am also in the neighborhood and found out that a relative of mine was a "servant" and resided in the home that my husband and I purchased. So, talk about feeling a connection to the former residents of your home. This information is available through the U.S. Census.
November 3, 2007 at 08:40PM | Unregistered CommenterStacey
Cool! You know, I never thought to check the census for former house owners, even though I've found some incredibly cool stuff on my own family. Thanks so much--I will follow up on this! (And what an amazing coincidence you describe in your house!)
November 3, 2007 at 11:43PM | Registered CommenterBrenda from Brooklyn
I could email a copy of the census pages to you but I don't see an email address for you.
November 4, 2007 at 01:32PM | Unregistered CommenterStacey

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