I haven't yet been able to locate the 1880 census page that shows the family.
I am really wondering if this is the same Tim O'Donnell as my great-grandfather.It is quite possible that he could have been married before he married my great-grandmother Maggie Hynes.He got married in Chicago on 19 December 1893 and he died on 31 October 1896 of typhoid fever.There are some discrepancies about ages - his death certificate had him down as 35 - which would put him being born in 1861. The death certificate also said he had been in Illinois for 5 years, so he got there from Ohio around 1891. His marriage certificate shows he was 28, which puts his birth around 1865.That coincides with the 1870 Census.
His brother Charles, who came with him from Ohio, got married to Lizzie Hynes, Maggie's sister, on 29 Nov 1894, showing his age to be 26, which puts his birth around 1868.The 1870 census shows he was 4, so his birth was around 1866; the 1900 census shows his birth in February 1867; the 1910 census shows him as 42, with a birth around 1868; and the 1930 census shows him as 53, birth around 1867.
So, I am pretty sure that the 1870 Census for London, Madison County, Ohio showing a Michael and Mary O'Donnell family with a Tim and a Charles with the correspondingly correct ages applies to my ancestors.
Now, could Tim have had a family before he came to Chicago?Yes, it is possible.He would have been 21 when he would have married Ellen - a very normal age to marry back then.They could have had a few children.Then Ellen died in 1891, the same year Tim got to Illinois (according to his death certificate).He could have turned over his children to his mother or his siblings and left for Illinois.However, your Tim you show dying in Ohio(?) around 1899, and I have Tim O'Donnell's death certificate showing he died 31 October 1896.
This last discrepancy kind of brings the analysis to a halt, doesn't it? If that last part is true, then we must be speaking of different people. Only you know how hard and fast those facts on your side are - could the scenario I have outlined be possible?
If your Tim is not my Tim, then that's all we can say.