Will the Real Rita J. Callahan Please…

My father and I have been in search of records that would give us a clue to the ancestery on his mother’s side. We know this:

  • His maternal grandmother went by the name of Rita Josephine Callahan
  • She was an active stage mother in San Francisco, California in the late 20’s, early 30’s, judging by the signed publicity photos of her, her children and other show biz types
  • She had 4 children: Patrick, Jerry (Francis), David and Eleanor (Stella – my grandmother)
  • She had lived in Washington State, and her daughter Eleanor may have been born there
  • In some of the family pictures of the children, the last name of “Long” has been crossed off and replaced by Callahan.
  • My father originally thought that he had visited Rita in the San Francisco Masonic Home, but my mother remembered it as being Laguna Honda Hospital.

During Ancestry.com’s  free  1930 census record promotion, I searched and found a Rita J. Callahan in San Francisco.

Rita J Callahan
Gender: Female
Birth Year: abt 1893
Birthplace: California
Race: White
Home in 1930: San Francisco, San Francisco, California
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Marital Status: Married
Relation to Head of House: Wife
Spouse’s Name: Joseph J Callahan
Father’s Birthplace: Alsace-Lorraine
Mother’s Birthplace: Alsace-Lorraine
Occupation:Education:Military Service:Rent/home value:Age at first marriage:Parents’ birthplace:

Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
Joseph J Callahan 48
Rita J Callahan 37
Marie C Callahan 19
Francis J Callahan 16
Margaret M Hermann 17
Frances M Hermann 30
Marie R Hermann 39

Here was my father’s response:

I think Pat Callahan was born around 1917 0r 1918.  David was the oldest and joined the merchant marines when he was about 15 years old. I contacted the Laguna Honda Hopital and found a Rita J. calahan that had died in June of 1963. I talked to my brother and he thought that was about the year that Rita died.  I ordered a Death certificate from VitalChec.  It takes a couple of months for them to get the certificate and I am waiting for it. The Rita born in 1893 would be to young, she would be 19 years old when my mother was born and looking at pictures, Rita looks to old when my mother was little.

I can attest to seeing that picture of Rita and my grandmother. From that picture it looks as if Rita may have been Eleanor’s grandmother, or had her late in life.

Anyone with information on Rita Josephine Callahan, please contact me through this website.

Thanks!