Nathaniel Shannon
Nathaniel Shannon's Headstone in Boston.

The SHANNON surname first appears in my wife’s family tree at her maternal great-grandmother, Marie R (SHANNON) BANNACH. From the looks of it Marie didn’t have a very good start to her life. Her mother, Mary (DAKINS) SHANNON died when Marie was only four years old. Then, as far as we can tell, her father, George Washington SHANNON, up and left as she is next found in the 1905 Wisconsin State Census living with her grandparents (Mary’s parents.) I have not yet been able to track down George, but some signs point to him dying in Colorado in about 1930.

George’s father is Nathaniel SHANNON, born in 1816 in Gilmanton, Belknap Co., New Hampshire, where the SHANNON family lived for many generations. If naming conventions had been used, his name should’ve been Nathaniel Shannon VII. From this point on my wife is descended from seven Nathaniel Shannon’s straight back to her 9th-great-grandfather Nathaniel SHANNON who was born in about 1655 in Ulster County, Ireland. The seventh Nathaniel also had a son named Nathaniel, but we have not traced it any further. The original Nathaniel Shannon is somewhat famous, at least in death, as he is buried in the famous Old Granary Burial Ground in Boston, Massachusetts with the likes of Paul Revere, John Hancock, and Samuel Adams. According to his headstone (to the right, click to bigify), he was also a Naval Officer of the Port of Boston. This is as far back as we can currently trace the SHANNON line in my wife’s tree, though from this line is where my wife theoretically connects to the Royal Line via the second Nathaniel SHANNON’s wife Abigail VAUGHAN.