Revised April 30, 2015 to include new information from the Quinn family.
We’re getting close to wrapping up our Anthology of Dan W. Quinn, and something occurs to us.
One of the challenges in telling the stories of the pioneer recording artists is trying to get a sense of what they were like as people. The stars were much more anonymous than today: They weren’t (for the most part) celebrities, each new record wasn’t accompanied by a media blitz, few got biographies or biopics, and TMZ wasn’t on hand to catch them out and about. To try and learn what their lives were like outside of the studio, we have to rely on the printed material that survives (industry publications and news items) and genealogical sources.
So, as far as the blog goes: there are plenty of fascinating things to share with you about the man and his life, but we should probably save some of the revelations for the final product! One item, however, that we won’t have room to explore fully is Quinn’s family. Here’s what we’ve found through our own research.
Dan’s parents were Benjamin Bernard Quinn (b. 1831) and Sabina L. Wilds (b. 1838), both of New York. They married no later than 1855 in New York and had all their children in New York. They moved to San Francisco sometime after the Civil War but no later than 1868. After a decade or so in the City by the Bay, they returned to New York City. (All that cross-country moving in those days can’t have been easy.)
- John Quinn (b. 1856)
- Leanora Quinn (b. Nov. 1858, d. Oct. 4, 1863)
- Daniel William Quinn (b. Nov. 1860, d. Nov. 7, 1938)
- Sarah Cornelia Quinn Taylor (b. Apr. 1862, d. Feb. 1937)
Dan’s brother John is listed in the 1870 census as “Drummer U.S.A.” Other than that, we know nothing about him.
Dan’s sister Sarah married Arthur Dean Taylor (b. Aug. 1860, d. c.1900-1905) in 1883. They had three children: Gertrude M. (b. July 1887), Arthur D. (b. Feb. 1893), and Edith C. (b. Oct. 1895). Gertrude married Alvin Van Benthuysen (b. 1884) on Dec. 24, 1905. Sarah was widowed early on; her son, Arthur, stayed with her until her own death in 1937, but after that we lose him. They lived in Manhattan on the east side of Central Park.
As for Dan’s family. By his own recollection, he met Mary Jane Ritchie (b. Dec. 16, 1866, d. Apr. 24, 1937) when she was 12, and they married in 1883 when she was 16 and he was 22. They had six children:
- Daniel William Quinn, Jr. (b. Feb. 18, 1886)
- Matthew Langtree Ritchie Quinn (b. July 23, 1886, d. Dec. 7, 1949)
- Arthur Alfred (“Nellie”) Quinn (b. Dec. 24, 1887, d. July 19, 1889)
- Mary Eliza “Lidie” Quinn Hunsberger (b. July 30, 1893, d. Dec. 1977)
- Jane Quinn Manderson (b. Sep. 20, 1897)
- Frank Banta Quinn (b. Feb. 18, 1902, d. Jan. 26, 1950)
Dan W., Jr. (eventually a vice-president of a trust company) married Lizzie Ewing Mclaren (b. c. 1879 in Scotland) in Apr. 1905. Their son, Daniel W. Quinn III, was born Sep. 23, 1906 and died Apr. 3, 1989. He had a long military career, reaching the rank of Army colonel. He married Alberta Gardner Folger Quinn (1906–2005) in 1929, and the couple had two daughters, Jeanne (b. 1931) and Joanne (b. 1935), and two grandsons. Dan W., Jr. remarried in 1917 to Clotilde B (Servante) Marsh.
Ritchie ran unsuccessfully for the New York Assembly on the Republican ticket—the election in 1938 was the day after his father, Dan W. Quinn, died. He married Frances Hilda Ullock (1910-2005) on Sep. 2, 1933, and the couple had one child, Frank, in 1934. The family moved to Vancouver, WA, where Ritchie owned a small newspaper. Asthma was a lifelong problem for him, and he died at the young age of 63.
Lidie Quinn married Herbert W. Hunsberger (b. 1891) on April 19, 1916. Their children were Myrtle (b. 1918), Herbert W. Jr. (b. 1920), Beatrice (b. 1923) and David (b. 1925).
Jane Quinn married Norman Alexander Manderson (b. 1894) in Aug. 1917. Their children were Norman (b. 1919) and Ruth (b. 1924).
Frank Banta Quinn met his future wife, Florence Misner (1908-1995) at New York Life Insurance. They married Jan. 24, 1938 and gave birth to Marilyn in Oct. 1938, Patricia in Aug. 1946 (d. Aug. 1946), and Robert in Apr. 1948. Frank Banta Quinn spent most of his last year in the hospital and passed away in Jan. 1950.
Thanks enormously to the Quinn grandchildren: Frank, Marilyn and Bob!