Townie Tidbits



   Over the years, I enjoy searching my roots on both sides of my family, the Harringtons from Charlestown and the Giarratanis from the North End. I actually know more about my Sicilian roots with far more oral history passed on generation to generation. Thanks to my nephew’s searching online and discovering that the Giarratani Family actually has French DNA we now know that those old stories had truth in them. My DNA history on my dad’s side is now southern French.

However, on my mother’s Irish side, it is clear that I am quite Irish in my roots. Actually, according to my nephew’s latest findings, I am actually more Irish than anything else. My Ma was right after all saying I was Irish like her.

   However, be that as it may. My concern this week is to find out something out  hopefully from those older Townies still kicking around town. Bob Fitzpatrick recently told me that there was a Ma Harrington who ran a rooming or boarding house in the area behind City Square, Station 15 and Warren Street. That was my mother’s neighborhood growing up in the town. She told me she lived on both Rutherford Avenue and Devens street where her family’s neighbors were the Devlins, the Harkens and the McLaughlins.

   I now seriously wonder if there were two Harrington families living up behind City Square or was Ma Harrington who ran the rooming house for men the same Ma Harrington who was my grandmother.

  I only ever heard of one other Harrington family in Charlestown up the hill near St.Francis de Sales. Once long ago I talked with Sgt. Dan Harrington cop-to-cop about the Harrington name and he told me his family had no relatives in Charlestown but neither of us ever heard of a third longtime Harrington family in town.

  I am running my grandmother’s photo to see if anyone out there recognizes her from the photo. Maybe it is a wild goose chase or maybe it will lead somewhere.

Remember my email address is

[email protected]

   Hope to be hearing from someone on this Charlestown story.


  I wanted to thank Seth Daniel for his commentary on a special  Charlestown tribute that took place during the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home Veteran Day exercises where Father Patrick Healy, a proud Townie by birth was honored for his long service at the Home to his mostly veteran congregation. Also honored at the same event was Cmdr Bob Gillen , the only Charlestown native to ever command the  USS Constitution from 1978-80.

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