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Biography of William A. Horan

Rev. William A. Horan, late pastor of St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church, at Freeport, Ill., was born in Pierce township, DeKalb Co., Ill., on Feb. 2nd, 1851, and is the son of the late Patrick M. and Mary (Hanaghan) Horan. Patrick M. Horan was a native of Ireland,, and was born in the year 1800. When a young man he removed to England, where he served in the British army. In 1839 he married Mary, a daughter of Malachy Hanaghan, of county Mayo, Ireland, their union resulting in the birth of twelve children, five of whom are still living. In 1849, in company with their parents and other members of their family, they emigrated to the United States intending to land at New Orleans, but on account of the cholera were not permitted to land but sent up the river and made the first landing at Beardstown, 111. They went directly to DeKalb, Ill., where the father-in-law purchased a tract of 160 acres of fertile farm land in the township of Pierce. Mr. Horan passed away in Aug., 1897, having survived his wife, Mary, twenty-four years. William (our subject) attended the public schools of his native town and the High school at DeKalb, from which he graduated with honor, at the age of fifteen. During the following two years he remained at home on the farm, but, determining to fit himself for the priesthood, in 1868 he entered that celebrated institution of learning, the University of Niagara, Niagara, N. Y., where he spent six years in the study of Classics, and four in Theology. In 1877 he completed the...

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