An Irish Soldier

Luke Masterson.
Luke Masterson.

Submitted by Eddie Masterson Jr.
August / September 2003

1861: Luke Masterson, 4th Cavalry Mounted Volunteers.


My great-grandfather Luke Masterson immigrated to the U.S. from County Cavan, Ireland. In 1861, he enlisted in the 4th Cavalry Mounted Volunteers of New York. As a member of this group, he fought in the Battle of Gettysburg. His brother, Patrick, was a member of the 4th Infantry of New York. Patrick died in combat due to wounds received at Gaines Mills in Virginia.

In 1864 Luke married Mary Geoghagen of Westmeath in St. Stephens Church in New York City. The couple took up residence in Ansonia, Connecticut, and had six children: Mary, Patrick, Joseph, Thomas, Charles and Edward, who was born in 1878. Edward eventually married Minnie Kershner and they had two sons, Edward George, my father, born 1909, and Frank.

My father married my mother Frieda Pape in 1935. They lived in Staten Island, New York and had five children: Marlene, Roy, Katherine, George and myself Edward John. I grew up in Staten Island and married Nora Barrett of County Mayo, Ireland in 1980. We live in upstate New York with our two children Brian Roy and Aine Marie Masterson, who are currently, attending SUNY Oswego. Brian, who is completing his final year and is planning to attend law school, is doing his thesis on the Orange Parades in Northern Ireland. Aine just finished her freshman year and hopes to be an elementary school teacher after graduation. We all visit Ireland regularly.

My good friend and cousin, Frank (Buddy) O’Connor, who lives in Albertson, Long Island, and is a great-grandson of Luke Masterson, provided me with the early family history. ♦

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