Katie Donnelly had no idea of the twists and turns her life would take when she left Ireland for New York in 1878.
Janie Riley, born almost 100 years later, was only going to Salt Lake City to research her 4th great-grandmother. She too had no idea of what other adventures awaited her.
Will their paths cross? What, if anything, will bring them together?
Janie Riley has a
habit of stumbling on to dead bodies. Once in Salt Lake City, her
search into the past leads her to more than she bargained for. The discovery of
a dark secret brings her closer to danger. Can she solve the mysteries of the
past and the present, and untangle a web of lies before disaster strikes?
Find out in my new Genealogy Mystery Novel "Death Finds a Way: A Janie Riley Mystery" now available on Amazon.com
But first read a bit of Katie's story:
The Steamer Baltic,
April 5, 1878
Katie shivered in the cool morning air and pulled her woolen cloak tighter as
she nudged her brother. Tendrils of glossy blue-back hair escaped from her hood
and she impatiently pushed them back. “Joey!” a soft cry escaped Katie’s lips.
“Look! That must be New York!”
Brother and sister were standing on the deck of
the ship that had brought them from Queenstown Ireland. The bow plunged through
the murky water and the shoreline loomed closer. “Finally,” muttered Joey, “I
can hardly wait to get off this damn thing and on to solid ground again!”
passage had not been an easy one. Joey had been ill for most of the voyage
across the Atlantic. They were both happy to be on deck where the smell of salt
air filled their nostrils. Being stuck below in steerage was miserable. Katie
wasn’t sure she would ever get the smell of urine, vomit, and other body waste
out of her nostrils. Babies with colic screamed long into the night, hungry
children cried for hours, and passengers who were sick moaned and retched with
horrible gagging noises. Women cried out in fear on hearing the ship groan and
creak as its wooden hull protested with every wave that hit. Katie had taken to
wrapping her cloak around her ears at night so that the dreadful sounds were
shivered again, partially from the cold and partially from nerves. They were
starting a new life in a foreign country. She remembered vividly the day Joey
came in from the fields and she had to tell him that their beloved ma was gone.
Pa had died of the fever just a few months before and their ma had followed not
here they were here in a city where they knew no one. Joey had a few pounds to
see them through until they could find work but Katie was terrified it would
not be enough. She hoped that the emigration agent had been telling the truth
when he said jobs were there for the taking in New York City. She prayed she
could find a position as a maid or downstairs kitchen girl in a good home,
while Joey figured that with his strong muscles and young back he’d work on the
docks or help in a stable. He was good with horses and even though he was only
18, no one knew more about gentling or taming a horse than he did.
wind had reddened Katie’s cheeks and they felt numb. She was glad the bad
weather had finally lifted and she had something to look at besides waves and
gray water. The sun was just coming up and Katie imagined she could feel a
slight warmth from it already. She could hear the cries of gulls overhead, this
sign of land bringing comfort to her.
nudged her. “Katie, look! I think we’re coming into the harbor.” He pointed to
an island on one side, mainland on the other and the narrowing gap of water
between them. Their excitement, coupled with apprehension, built. What would
happen now? How long would it take to get off the ship, find their baggage, and
get on their way? But on their way where? [Excerpt from "Death Finds a Way: A Janie Riley Mystery" by Lorine McGinnis Schulze]
Information on the author and her books, articles and interviews can be found at LorineSchulze.com