Children of Mary Ann O'Neill and William James Major

Patrick Major and his wife, Mary Quigley (1890-1959) endured more than their share of tragedy, especially through the untimely deaths of her father (below) and later when their teenaged son Leo Major was killed in an automobile accident that haunts Skaneateles, New York, to this day.

Their first child, Edward "Bob" Major, is shown with his parents in the photo above.

Two other sons, Hugh and William "Bud" Major, can be seen in a series of tapes made by Rob Major, who lives in Florida. The tapes were made in 1994 and recently were posted on You Tube. Rob Major asked his father and uncle to give an oral history of the family, and these tapes, which run more than two hours, are the interesting result.

Use this link to watch and listen:

Skaneateles Press, Feb. 3, 1914
The body of Patrick Quigley of Skaneateles Falls, who had been missing from home since last Wednesday, was found in Skaneateles outlet early Saturday afternoon by some boys who were playing in the vicinity of the raceway of the old Hart Lot paper mill.

Mr. Quigley was drowned probably on Wednesday night while on the way from the home of his daughter, Mrs. Patrick Major, with whom he lived, to the home of his sister, Mrs. John Keenan, to whom he wished to tell the good news that a relative in Ireland had willed him $500.

He had to cross a bridge over the outlet near the old Hart Lot paper mills. It is thought that in the dark he misjudged his step and fell into the water. Coroner G. R. Kinne decided that death was accidental.

Mr. Quigley was 53 years of age and had long been a resident of Skaneateles Falls. Besides Mrs. Major, he leaves two other daughters, the Misses Sarah and Catherine Quigley; three sons, John, Hugh and James Quigley, and two sisters, Mrs. Keenan and Mrs. Martin Connors.

The funeral services of deceased were held at the home of his sister, Mrs. John Keenan, at 9 o’clock today, and at St. Mary’s church in this village at 10 o’clock. Interment was made in St. Mary’s cemetery.

Skaneateles Democrat, February 5, 1914
Patrick Quigley of Skaneateles Falls was drowned in the damn of the Aster Paper Co. at Harts Lot Wednesday night, Jan. 28. 1914. Mr. Quigley came to America from Ireland about five years ago, after the death of his wife there.

He was employed for some time in the Glenside Woolen Mills, and from there went to Waterloo. He returned to Glenside and had been employed in the different manufacturing places from time to time. Of late he had been in the employment of the N.Y.C.&H.R.R. as section hand.

Wednesday he received a letter from a firm of lawyers in Ireland, telling him that he was heir to $500. After eating his supper, he remarked he thought he would go over and tell his sister about it. Taking a short cut, it was necessary for him to cross a foot bridge built across the outlet several years ago. Mr. Quigley evidently mistook the place where the footbridge went across or stepped off the bridge into the dam, thinking he was on the other side.

Some boys playing near the raceway Saturday saw his body floating near the surface of the water and notified Patrick Major. He was horrified to see it was the body of his father-in-law.

Meagher and Fitzgerald, undertakers of Skaneateles were called and took charge of the body. Coroner G. R. Stone was called and decided that death was accidental.

Mr. Quigley was 58 years of age and is survived by three daughters, Mrs. Patrick Major and Miss Sarah Quigley of Skaneateles Falls and Miss Catherine Quigley of Waterloo; three sons, John, Hugh and James Quigley, and two sisters, Mrs. John Keenan and Mrs, Martin Connors of Skaneateles Falls.

Funeral services were held from the home of his sister, Mrs. John Keenan, Tuesday, Feb. 3, 1914, at 9 o’clock and at St. Mary’s Church, Skaneateles at 10 ‘clock.

Interment is in St. Mary’s Cemetery.

Skaneateles Press, November 30, 1956
Patrick J. Major a life resident of Skaneateles Falls and a retired millwright, died last Friday night (November 23, 1956) after a long illness.

Prior to his retirement Mr. Major had worked at the Glenside Woolen Mills for 50 years.

A communicant of St. Bridget’s Church, Skaneateles Falls, he was a member of its Holy Name Society.

Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Mary Quigley Major, three sons, Edward J., Hugh T. and William D., all of Skaneateles Falls; two sisters, Miss Sadie and Miss Elizabeth Major of Skaneateles Falls, and nine grandchildren.

Funeral services were conducted in the O’Neill Funeral Home, 51 Jordan St., at 8:30 a.m. Monday. A high requiem mass was celebrated in St. Mary’s of the Lake Church, Skaneateles, at 9 a.m., with the Rev. William Regan, assisted by the Rev. Daniel C. Hartnett, as deacon, and the Rev. M. A. McMahon as sub deacon.

Bearers were Joseph O’Hara, Vincent Quigley, Hugh Casey, Richard Platt, James Quigley and Stanley Major.

Burial was in St. Mary’s Cemetery.

Skaneateles Press, December 4, 1959
Mrs. Mary Quigley Major, aged 69, widow of Patrick Major of Skaneateles Falls, died at her home Thursday morning (December 3, 1959) after a short illness.

A native of Ireland, Mrs. Major had resided in Skaneateles Falls for the past 49 years. She was a communicant of St. Bridget’s Church, Skaneateles Falls, and a member of the Altar and Rosary Society.

She is survived by three sons, Edward J. Major of Skaneateles Falls, Hugh T. Major of Auburn, and William Donald Major of Skaneateles Falls; a sister, Mrs. Sarah Brandon of Rochester, 13 grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

The funeral will take place at the O’Neill Funeral Home, 51 Jordan Street, Skaneateles, Monday at 8:30 a.m. A high Mass of requiem will be celebrated in St. Mary’s of the Lake Church at 9 a.m. by the Rev. M. A. McMahon.

Burial will be in St. Mary’s Cemetery.

Children of Mary Quigley and Patrick Major
1. Edward "Bob" Major (1912-1969) m. Frances McGuire (1922- )

Daniel Edward Major (1958- ) m. Charie Ann Canale. Living in Auburn, NY

Katherine Irene Major (1959- ) m. Brian DeVay. Living in Seneca Falls, NY. One son:
Ryan Edward DeVay (1981- )
Peter James Major (1960- ) m. Teresa Donnelly. Living in Brockport, NY.
2. Leo Vincent Major (1913-1929) died in an auto accident in Skaneateles.

Auburn Citizen-Advertiser, August 19, 1948
Patricia Florence Robinson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William B. Robinson of 12 Thornton Avenue, Auburn, was married to Hugh Thomas Major, son of Mr. and Mrs. Patrick Major, of Skaneateles, in St. Mary’s Church, on Saturday, August 7, at 9 a.m. Rt. Rev. Msgr. William E. Cowen performed the double ring ceremony, and the Rev. E. Leo McMannus said the nuptial Mass.

The bride was given in marriage by her father. Miss Katherine E. O’Hara of Skaneateles Falls was the maid of honor. William D. Major of Skaneateles Falls, a brother of the bridegroom, was the best man.

The bride has been employed by the Columbian Rope Company. The bridegroom, who served four years in the Army, is a student at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

After a wedding trip to Lake George, the couple will live in Rochester.

3. Hugh Thomas Major (1918-2002) m. Patricia Robinson ( ??-1999). Hugh and Patricia Major moved to Florida in 1962. He was living in South Daytona at the time of his death. They had five children:

William Major. In 1977 Wiliam Major was living in Rome, NY

Mary Katherine Major (1953-1977). Mary Katherine Major died as the result of an automobile accident in Lantana, FL, where she lived. She was a graduate of the University of South Florida and taught learning disabled children in Pasco County, Florida.

Robert Major lives in Orlando, FL (See bottom of page)

Michael Major. In 1977 Michael Major was living in Miami, FL

Martin Major. In 1977 Martin Major was living in Gainesville, FL

4. William Donald "Bud" Major (1920-2006) m. Doris Guertin (1924-2010).

A native of Skaneateles Falls, Bud Major retired from Alco in Auburn. He was an Army Air Corps veteran of World War 2, serving in the South Pacific, and was a member of the former St. Bridget's Church in Skaneateles Falls. He died on Monday, January 2, 2006, at the age of 85.

Doris Guertin Major was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. She also was a member of the former St. Bridget's Church. She died January 3, 2010, at the age of 85.

Bud and Doris Major had seven children:

1. Patrick William Major (1946- ) m. Brenda Carden (1949- ) Waterloo, NY

William Patrick Major (1969- ) m. Mae Worden (divorced)
Mason Major (2001- )
Morgan Major (2004- )
Maggie Rose Major (2006- )
Gloria Major (1971- ) m. Carmen Caratozzolo. Seneca Falls, NY
Brendan Caratozzolo
Matthew Caratozzolo
Connor Caratozzolo
Vanessa Caratozzolo

2. John (Jack) Thomas Major (1948-2011) m. Janice (Janie) Southwick (1946-2005). In 2006 he remarried to Gale Kinne.

Syracuse Post-Standard, November 16, 2011
John Thomas Major, 63, Bradenton, died November 13, 2011. Born in Skaneateles, New York he moved to Bradenton in 1985 from Miami, Florida.

A Veteran on the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War, he was a Catholic, and a lifetime member of the Gold Wing Road Riders, and the Golden Eagles.

Survived by wife, Gale of Bradenton, Fla.; son, Jay E. (Stacy) of Palmetto, Fla.; daughters, Rhonda of Bradenton, Fla., Greta (Francisco) Major-Huerta of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; brothers, Patrick, Timothy, and Leo; sisters, Susan Hansen and Marie Bruch all of N.Y.; and four grandchildren.

Greta Major m. Francisco Huerta; Fort Lauderdale, FL
Francisco Huerta Jr.
Joshua Huerta
Rhonda Major lives in Bradenton, FL
Jay Major m. Stacy Davis; they live in Palmetto, FL
Robert Slezak

3. James Timothy (Tim) Major m. Kathy Leach. They live in Auburn, NY

Cassandra Major m. Michael Keim. Cassandra's second husband: Chris? They live in Skaneateles Junction, NY
Kaylee Keim (2001- )
Colleen Major m. Sebastian; New York City

4. Marie Elizabeth Major m. Fred Bruch; they live in Clifton Springs, NY

Heather Bruch (1972- ) lives in North Carolina

5. Linda Sue Major (1953-60)

6. Susan Ann Major m. Eric Hansen. She lives in Cayuga, NY
Miranda Hansen
William Major Howell (2005- )
Riley Howell (2007- )
Kory Hansen

7. Leo Major m. Cindy Summerville. They live in Auburn, NY

Maureen Elizabeth Major m. Gregg Michael Paur. Syracuse, NY
Ryan Major

Robert (Rob) Major is an attorney in Orlando, Florida, having moved to the Sunshine State when his parents, Hugh and Patricia (Robinson) Major left Auburn, New York, in 1962. Rob was in the third grade at the time. In October, 2019, he attended a reception for now-President Joe Biden in West Palm Beach. "Only cost $2,800!" said Rob in a recent email. But unlike that old joke that ends, "And all I got was this lousy t-shirt!", Rob wound up with this photograph.