Marchioness Ellen McLaughlin (1829-1915), Brooklyn, New York

MRS. HUGH McLAUGHLIN
Democratic Leader’s Widow, Made a Marchioness, Dies at 85
The New York Times, April 3, 1915

Mrs. Sarah Ellen McLaughlin, the widow of Hugh McLaughlin, for many years the Democratic leader of Kings County, died yesterday morning at her home 163 Remsen Street, Brooklyn, at the age of 85 years. She was a Marchioness of the Roman Catholic Church and was known for her philanthropic and charitable work, hospitals and orphan asylums, being her particular benefactions.

Mrs. McLaughlin was born in Lafayette, Sussex County, New Jersey, and was a daughter of Martin R. Kays, a farmer of that place. Her family were of the Dutch Reformed faith, but before her marriage she joined the Roman Catholic Church. She met Mr. McLaughlin while visiting the Brooklyn Navy Yard with friends. Mr. McLaughlin was at that time a foreman of workers in that yard. He was called “Boss” McLaughlin by the men under him and this appellation stuck to him when he entered politics and became a leader. Explaining how he came to be so called, Mr. McLaughlin always claimed, with evident, that he was “the only original political boss.”

After her marriage in 1862, Mrs. McLaughlin became one of the most active workers in the Catholic Church in Brooklyn. Her particular care was St. Mary’s Hospital. She was also interested in the St. Vincent’s Home for Boys, and in other like institutions in the borough. In memory of her husband she erected the Church of St. Hugh, in Huntington, L.I. Three years ago she provided for a monument to mark a spot near her birthplace in New Jersey where the Continental Army camped in the Revolution.

Because of her work for the church, Mrs. Mcaughlin in 1908 was given the title of Marchioness of the Papal nobility by Pius X. Mrs. McLaughlin is survived by two daughters, Mrs. William C. Courtney and Mrs. Benedict C. Roache. Funeral services will be held on Monday in St. James’ Pro-Cathedral. The Right Rev. George W. Mundlelein, Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn, will officiate.

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