History and images have been compiled from various sources including, among others, the 1987 National Register of Historic Places, Stack & Beasley's 1902 Sketches of Monroe and Union County, Union County Public Library (Patricia Poland, Genealogy & Local History Librarian), the Heritage Room Photo Collection, North Carolina Map Collection, Rootsweb - An Ancestry.com Community and Ancestry.com family histories.

Who was Ellen Fitzgerald?

 Ellen Elizabeth Houston Armfield Fitzgerald 1841-1916

W.H. Fitzgerald
Ellen “Ella” Houston was born in Monroe, North Carolina on October 11, 1841. She was the daughter of Hugh McCombs Houston (1817-1901) and Margaret Reid.

Miss Fitzgerald married David Franklin Armfield on November 27, 1864. Armfield was killed in action at Chamberlain, Virginia on March 31, 1865 while serving in Co. A, 9th Regiment, NC Troops. 

Fitzgerald Home on Hayne
Ellen’s second marriage was to Col. William Henry Fitzgerald (1840-1899) on January 29, 1867. Fitzgerald served in the Civil War, mustering in as a corporal. Though he resided in Davidson County, he enlisted in Cabarrus County, NC with the "Cabarrus Rangers" on June 15, 1861. Co. F, 9th Regiment (1st Regiment N. C. Cavalry). When he resigned on Dec. 7, 1864, after accidentally shooting himself in the foot on Sept. 29, 1864, he was a 2nd Lieutenant. The source of the Colonel designation is not known; perhaps he served with the local state militia, later the National Guard. Fitzgerald was a Mason and employed at People's Bank in Monroe, NC. 

Interestingly, People's Bank of Monroe began in 1874, with Ellen's father H. M. Houston as president and Mr. E. A. Armfield cashier. Two years later, Mr. Armfield resigned, and Col. W. H. Fitzgerald was elected cashier. Fitzgerald served until April, 1896 when ill health compelled Col. Fitzgerald to retire. 

Ellen Fitzgerald
The 1880 Monroe Census recorded a 13-year-old adopted daughter Lottie in the Fitzgerald household, along with two young servants. The servants were Susan McGuirt 16, housekeeper, and 12-year-old black servant Lizzie Houston.

W.H. and Ellen Fitzgerald's daughter Lottie married S.O. Blair on January 23, 1889. “The ceremony was performed at the residence of the bride’s father, Col. W.H. Fitzgerald, cashier of the Peoples’ Bank of Monroe, NC. After the quiet, but tasteful and beautiful wedding, the young couple took an extended trip, visiting most of the Southern and Western cities. The bride is one of the most beautiful and popular members of Monroe society and an accomplished graduate of the Charlotte Female Institute. The groom, son of Dr. J.H. Blair, is a graduate of the Maryland College of Pharmacy and one of the most energetic and successful businessmen of the city of Monroe.” (Record of Sigma Alpha Epsilon) 

The 1900 Monroe Census recorded widow Ellen 58, her father 82, Aunt Margarite 75, nephew Clarence 24, a druggist, and several servants in the household. Under "profession," Ellen and her father are listed as "Capitalists."

At the age of 74, Ellen Fitzgerald died May 29, 1916.  Her death certificate recorded cause of death as diabetes contributed by dementia. 

Ellen Fitzgerald Hospital 1950
Ellen Fitzgerald left her home and property on Hayne Street to the city of Monroe to be used as a hospital. This hospital, known as The Ellen Fitzgerald Hospital, opened October 14, 1921. When the main building was erected in 1925; the house was moved to the side and used as the nurses' home. After Union Memorial Hospital opened in 1953, the Ellen Fitzgerald Hospital was used as a long-term care facility. Today the building is used as the Ellen Fitzgerald Senior Center.

1 comment:

  1. Born there in 1946. One of my earliest memories was of the fountain out front. I was fascinated one time to see the golden carp apparently frozen in the almost glass clear ice. At least they did not move when I knocked on the ice.