The Lulley Family and the Vasvary Collection

My mother and I have been doing genealogical research since the early 1990's and one of our most interesting and fruitful lines has been our Lulley family.

Emanuel Lulley - sometimes called Mano or Merno - my great-great-great-grandfather came to the United States with Hungarian freedom fighter Lajos Kossuth. Lulley, his wife Cecilia and five of his children sailed from Constantinople on September 7, 1851 aboard the U.S.S. steam frigate Mississippi arriving in New York harbor on November 11, 1851. The ship's manifest list Emanuel Lüley as a Captain and Officer of Police.1

Emanuel's name appeared for the first time in the Washington, District of Columbia city Directory two years later in 1853. Except for certain gaps, he appeared consistently in the D.C. directories until his death on October 30, 1895.

Our first contact with the research of Edmund Vasvary was his information of Emanuel Lulley from his book, Lincoln's Hungarian Heroes: The Participation of Hungarians in the Civil War (Washington, DC, 1939). In this book on page 65 Mr. Vasvary says of Emanuel Lulley:

"He was a secret service man in the Hungarian war of independence.
After the collapse he fled to Turkish territory with other emigrants. [...]
His wife and five children were with Kossuth in Kutahia and the
whole family came to America with Kossuth on the U.S. Mississippi.

He became a major in the Civil War and according to a document signed
by General Burnside, rendered valuable services. He then was employed
in the secret service Division of the Department of Justice."

In the past few months I was put in touch with Mária Kórász, Librarian and Keeper of the Vasvary Collection. Ms. Kórász said there were five pages about Emanuel Lulley in the Vasvary Collection, with Edmund Vasvary's handwriting, which were quotations from different books (Hentaller, Gracza, Wolf, Acs, Egressy) and most were in Hungarian and also bibliographic data with page numbers concerning Emanuel Lulley (L5:36-38). She kindly shared all information with me regarding both Emanuel and his grandson, Julius Lulley a restaurateur in Washington, DC.

According to Vasvary and others Emanuel served in the American Civil War but this fact has been hard to verify. According to an article in a New York newspaper from 1861, several Hungarian officers tried to form an infantry regiment to be called Kossuth Guard and elected Captain Lulley as acting Major.2 Unfortunately I have not found any evidence of an actual regiment of that name from the Civil War.

I have found a recommendation for Major Lulley written in 1883 by John Tyler, Jr. the eldest son of our tenth President, John Tyler. Apparently Emanuel Lulley was applying for a position in Washington, DC in the office of the Treasury. In that recommendation it says that Lulley "was commissioned as Major on the Union side during the War" This letter seems to verify that Major Lulley did serve in the U.S. Civil War.3

Additionally, when Mrs. Cecilia Lulley died in 1892 her obituary said that "Major Lulley rendered service of value during the civil war, under direction of the Secretary of War, in a special capacity."4 So perhaps that is the service that Mr. Vasvary was referring to when he said was in the secret service division of the Department of Justice.

In the Vasvary Collection are some handwritten notes from the Diary of Gabor Egressy that note that Lulley worked under Pal Hajnik, who was Kossuth's chief of police. Egressy refers to Lulley as a police official.5 This information confirms the occupation listed on the ship's manifest referred to above which lists Lulley as a police officer. Additionally, Egressy refers to Lulley's business activities in supplying food and drinks to the émigrés, selling various merchandise, etc. I was not aware of this role for Lulley until I received the Vasvary Collection material.

I have much information on the children of Emanuel Lulley and they were indeed a colorful bunch. In the Vasvary Collection there are articles about Julius Lulley who was the son of Moses Lulley, the 8th child of Emanuel Lulley. Julius Lulley is the second cousin once removed of my mother, Lois Hechinger England and he is the only person named Lulley that my mother ever knew. It was interesting for her in particular to see the articles of Julius provided by the Vasvary Collection.

I want to thank Mária Kórász and the Vasvary Collection for all her time and research and for her help in my genealogical discoveries. I got her name from another wonderful resource Dr. Stephen Beszedits at the University of Toronto in Canada.

1  U.S. National Archives, Ship's Log of the U.S.S. Mississippi, passenger list.
2  New York Herald, August 4, 1861.
3  U.S. National Archives, Letter to Honorable John C. New from John Tyler, Jr., May 8, 1883.
4  Washington Post, Oct. 10, 1892, p. 8.
5  Vasvary Collection (L5:38)

Vissza az oldal tetejére
Nonie England Akman
Chevy Chase, Maryland, USA