Proud of their country and their new house, Lawrence and Blanche Faron hosted the Faron family’s first July 4th clambake at their home in Millbury, Massachusetts in 1941. Lawrence’s grandfather Peter Faron (Fern) had emigrated to the United States as a boy with his mother and six siblings from Kileary, County Armagh, in May 1853, six months after his father, Michael. Michael had gone on ahead of his family in order to seek out work and accommodation, before their arrival. The family landed in New York and settled in Millbury, an industrial town along the Blackstone River. Michael became a laborer/small farmer and left his farm to his eldest son, Patrick, while younger son Peter worked in the local mill. Peter’s family and Patrick’s family shared a house on Rhodes Street, Millbury for many years before Peter’s family were able to move into their own home.
Lawrence worked for New England Power Company and married his high school sweetheart, Blanche, when they were both very young. The July 4th family gatherings continued until Lawrence’s death in 1971, but the sense of family remains so strong that Lawrence and Blanche’s eldest daughter, Nancy (third from left in front row), continues to host a similar gathering every July 4th.
Bill Faron, Lawrence’s brother who took the picture, was a detective in the Boston Police before he retired in the early 1960s. Because of his professional experience in taking pictures of felons and crime scenes, he became the unofficial family photographer and for that reason rarely features in a family photograph.
Gathered on the front porch are: Top (left to right): Fr. Arthur A. Faron, Mary E. (Connell) Faron, Margaret (Leary) Faron, Rose Faron, Nellie (Faron) Norton, Blanche (Roberts) Faron and matriarch Celia Faron. Bottom (left to right): Lawrence M. Faron, John Faron, Nancy Faron, Rosemary Norton, Lawrence J. Faron, John Norton and (standing) Walter F. Faron. ♦