Pierce Farm Houses Sketches up to 1946

From Maxine Olson,

“Hi everyone. I came across the attached sketches that Mother had made at one point–they are of the houses that she lived in as a girl. There is also a map indicating where the houses were.

I think that the map answers the question about the old houses were in the pasture, Melvin, that we saw at the time of the reunion.”


William Pierce and Margaret Slattery home in Rochester, MN

In about 1900, William sold the 80 acres and bought a half-section of land to the north and west, which he held until 1909 when he sold it and bought a home at 1006 Dubuque Street (now Third Avenue S.E.) in Rochester. The couple raised chickens and sold eggs. The income from those sales, together with the sale of horseradish which they ground and made into relish, bought their groceries and meat each year.

This is a paragraph from the “Kilrane Seven” book about our Pierce ancestors and their journey from Ireland and settling America. I decided to look up the address of the house on Google, and came across this house. Built in 1915, but not sure if Wiliiam and Margaret lived here until their deaths in 1925 and 1926.



William and Margaret Pierce's home in Rochester, MN
William and Margaret Pierce’s home in Rochester, MN

1006 3rd Ave SE Google Maps

Property Details


1006 3rd Ave SE is a Single family located in Slatterly Park, MN, in Olmsted county. Built in 1915, this property was last sold for $59,000 in 2014 and currently has an estimated value of $138,112. The median price for this area is 205900. There are currently 1,135 similar properties for sale within 10-mile radius, ranging from $55,000 – $179,900.

Key Facts

  • Single family
  • Year built: 1915
  • Price/Sq Ft: $84

Public Records

  • Beds: 2
  • House size: 869 sq ft
  • Stories: 2
  • Lot size: 6,500 sq ft
  • Garage: Detached Garage
  • Heating: Forced Air
  • Cooling: Unknown
  • Year built: 1915
  • Year renovated: 1970
  • Property type: Single family
  • Date updated: 06/07/2016

So this home has been renovated in 1970, and I’m not sure how original the house actually is. But I might point out one more cool bit of info, is that this home is located in Slatterly Park, MN in Olmsted county. It is spelled with an ‘L’ but Margarets name is not. Maybe it was a mistake in the records somewhere, maybe it’s a different name all together. I’m not sure. The land was donated by a William Slattery, which could be Margaret’s brother.

Margarets parents were Terrence Slattery and Elizabeth (Eliza) OToole, both natives of Tipperary County, Ireland, who had been married in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, May 27, 1853. Mr. Slattery was a sturdy, wiry man; a good recreational boxer; and a “puddler” or ironworker by trade. The couple lived in Philadelphia, an iron and steel city, where Mr. Slattery plied his trade. It was there that Margaret and her twin brother Will were bom February 14,1854. Some time later they moved to St. Louis hoping, perhaps, for better working conditions. There a son Michael was bom, and in 1861 or 1862 a daughter Elizabeth and a twin brother. The twin brother died in infancy.

After the Civil War broke out, they were living in Buffalo, New York. Little Elizabeth was just six weeks old when her father enlisted in the Union army on December 15, 1863. As was customary in those days, he enlisted for short periods of time and was a private in Company D, 24th Regiment, New York Cavalry. Margaret, the eldest daughter, told how she remembered her father coming home at different times, staying for a while, re-enlisting, and then being gone again. She also remembered the barrels of rations (salt pork, beans, flour, etc.) that were sent to their home because their father was a soldier. She remembered that there came a time when she hadn’t seen her father for a long, long time and saw her mother crying often. When she asked her mother why she cried, her mother said, “You will never see your father again.” He had contracted “Black Dysentery” (chronic diarrhea), which was so prevalent at the time because of poor drinking water, and died in September 17,1864 in Harewood Hospital, Washington, D.C. All soldiers at that time had little care. He was buried at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C. At the time of his death, his possessions were one watch, one pocket book, a book containing some papers, and 29 cents.

Arlington National Cemetery
Arlington National Cemetery
Arlington National Cemetery visiting the grave of my 2nd Great Grandfather Terrence Slattery
Arlington National Cemetery visiting the grave of my 2nd Great Grandfather Terrence Slattery 2014

Some time after Mr. Slattery’s death, the President saw to it that tracts of land could be granted to soldiers’ widows. Mrs. Slattery decided to go to Minnesota to take up one of those claims. The family traveled by oxen team with all their possessions. They went to the Campions in Marion Township, Olmsted County. Margaret worked for the Tom Campion family and had a promise of being able to go to school. It transpired, though, that she got very little schooling, less than third grade, but she worked hard at housework. Mrs. Slattery was getting a soldier’s widow’s pension of $12 per month, but since most of the claims had already been taken, she didn’t take up a claim. She died on November 9, 1908.

It was when she, Margaret, was in Rochester and surrounding area that she met and married William Pierce. They were married on December 28, 1877 in St. John’s Catholic Church in Rochester. They lived on rented and owned farms near Rochester and had nine children.

In the early 1920s William’s eyesight began to fail, and he was told by Dr. Benedict at the Mayo Clinic that he had glaucoma. He was blind for some time before his death on December 22, 1925. Margaret, his wife, had always enjoyed vigorous health but she suffered a liver ailment and died April 24, 1926. Had the couple lived until 1927 they would have had their golden wedding anniversary. Both are buried in what is now Calvary Cemetery in Rochester.

Jack, Frank, Charley, and Mike Pierce with their mother Margaret Slattery Pierce. From Alice Hinkleman Pierce.
Jack, Frank, Charley, and Mike Pierce with their mother Margaret Slattery Pierce. From Alice Hinkleman Pierce.
Charley and Alma Pierce with others I need help with.

Information from original Our Irish Kinfolk (1980)

Hope to see you all at the reunion soon!