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Messages - don_niagara

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Ross & Cromarty / Re: McKenzie - Ross & Cromarty
« on: Saturday 01 July 17 01:58 BST (UK)  »
Cromarty itself comprised a number of separate parts before merging with Ross.

In the first post note is made that census records give place of origin as "district of Cromarty", as Skoosh notes CromartyShire at time of birth of your guy was administered separate from RossShire, and stretched in pockets embedded in RossShire from west to east coasts, a confusing situation, see Check the other people on those census pages, see if the census taker was noting place of origin as a town or as a county.

Down / Re: Mawhinney at Newtownards
« on: Sunday 02 April 17 01:25 BST (UK)  »
Hiya Kazzalady, you wrote;

Hello don_niagara.

Thanks for your post about the Mawhinneys of Newtownards.  I was very interested to read the information about William McGimpsey that was included. I am hoping you may be willing to share any further information on him and his family as I am researching the McGimpseys of Mill Isle.  My husband is a descendent.

Great to see, though your message notes "Mill Isle" I assume you were referring to the "Mill Street" location, the William McGimpsey there who married "Maggie" Mawhinney was born about 1853 at Ballyblack, (an unconfirmed source says born 29 March, 1852 "in Granshaw, Ireland"), to father Robert McGimpsey, a blacksmith at Newtownards, from various postings and sources I have charted descent of William and Maggie as part of my own tree at a non public location I will PM to you.  I have not charted ancestry of William as my tie to the family is through Maggie (a sister of my own gt-grandfather, James Mawhinney). You can see the McGimpseys in my chart at about two thirds down, beginning with Maggie Mawhinney whose chart number is 1-2-2

My email address is (*) if your husband does descend from the Mill St. McGimpseys he is a distant cousin of mine, and I'd appreciate any corrections or additions to that chart, which is not publically displayed as it does contain some data on living people.

All the best from Niagara,


(*) Moderator Comment: e-mail removed in accordance with RootsChat policy,
to avoid spamming and other abuses.
Please use the Personal Message (PM) system for exchanging personal data.

Interesting! Thanks for sharing.

Meath / Re: Mooney at Drumconrath
« on: Wednesday 09 November 16 15:21 GMT (UK)  »
I had a look to see James's parents. I got them in the 1870 and went back to 1860 as his mother was a widow in 1870.
So his father was James born in 1820ish and Mother was Ellen.
James had an elder sister Mary born in New York c 1853ish and another sister called Margaret c 1857ish.
Going back to the Ireland records I have found a James in Drumcornath born 1819, Father Matthew and Mother Mary Rogers.
There are quite a few Mooney names listed in the area of Drumcornath.
Is this a help?
I can't get into a site at this time but will gladly do more searching for you.
Let me know what you would like to see.

Hi Maggie,

yes, this is the ethnologist's family, Ellen noted in several records as maiden surname Devlin.

According to the family info gathered by the writer of the 2012 article in "Records of Meath Archaelogical and Historical Society", primarly from letters in the Mooney papers at Washington, an uncle of the ethnologist, Daniel Mooney, in 1899 wrote that his father's father, unnamed there but identified from other records as Matthew Mooney, was from Castletown, about 8 miles from Drumconrath in the Navan direction, and married about 1815 to Mary Rodgers, he then aged about 40 (b.~1775), she aged about 19 (b.~1796).

Matthew and Mary reportedly had 11 children, James senior, father of the ethnologist being third eldest, Daniel himself being youngest. Daniel further states his father Matthew died 11 October, 1846, and his mother Mary died "about 14 or 15 years ago" (d.~1885). Mary's family having been several centuries there, and by her Matthew acquired the land. Daniel notes his unnamed grandfather (father of Matthew) was buried at Mitchellstown with the oldest stone there. Another letter, from Mary, m.s.Rodgers, Mooney, notes her own mother's father was buried at Drumbride.

Though the marriage of Matthew and Mary is not in the Drumconrath register, the baptism of the reportedly third child, James (father of James the ethnologist), is recorded as May 27, 1819, which fits to Daniel's suggestion marriage of Matthew and Mary was about 1815.

James Mooney, father of the ethnologist, reportedly lived near the Devlin family, and first proposed to Ellen Devlin at Liverpool, then again in New York, though a ships list suggests they were married before emigrating.

For my own family, the Parish Register notes marriage 28 June, 1823 at Drumconrath (Drumcondra), County Meath, Ireland, of Thomas Mooney to Catherine Wall, witnesses were a Michael Mooney and a John Wall, relationships not noted but my guess is siblings of Thomas and Catherine. This was within a few years of the reported marriage of Matthew Mooney to Mary Rodgers, and my guess is Matthew, Thomas, and Michael were brothers. My Mooneys lived at Largy, only 184 acres in the townland, and as few as 11 familys there in 1901, so I think presumption of relationship is safe, just details unclear.

1854 Griffith's has Michael renting from Mary Mooney, that Mary thought to be Mary m.s.Rodgers, mother of James (father of ethnologist) and Daniel. That 1854 Michael may be another son of Mary, or brother of her late husband Matthew, and so witness to "my" family marriage in 1823

In 1870 my gt-grandfather, Thomas Mooney, son of Thomas Mooney and Catharine Wall, married at Drumconrath to Catharine Fegan ("Fagan"), one of the witnesses was Daniel Mooney, uncle of the ethnologist, my guess is father of the 1870 Thomas, the Thomas who married in 1824, was brother of the Matthew who married about 1815, which would put witness Daniel as first cousin of groom Thomas in 1870.

As you can see there is a lot of supposition and guesswork above, and any insights are welcome!


Meath / Mooney at Drumconrath
« on: Monday 07 November 16 01:58 GMT (UK)  »
A Canadian historian, Padraig O'Siadhail, shared with me a month ago his 2012 article published in the journal, Riocht na Midhe, entitled "The man from Largy: James Mooney, Native American scholar and the Meath connection". Unfortunately I have not had time or wits to fully unscramble the genealogy, but people in James' tree clearly are mentionned in mine (Mooneys at townland of Largy in Drumconrath Parish, Co.Meath), and I am pretty sure this pioneer ethnologist and anthropologist was a first cousin, a bunch of times removed, of myself.

James Mooney led an interesting life, though born in America he was much tied to Ireland, and had correspondence with his relatives at Drumconrath. The article is presumably copyright protected to Padraig, so I will not publically post it, however, there is some bio of him in the introduction to one of his books at;

And here is a link to the Wikipedia page on the guy;

Ross & Cromarty / Re: Dawson, Argyle Street, Ullapool
« on: Sunday 25 September 16 16:34 BST (UK)  »
I have some notes on this family at

From my notes there it appears "Ann" was a mistranscription by the enumerator, other records including her death reg clearly show her as "Catherine", daughter of Thomas Ross and Janet MacKenzie. I also note there regarding Catherine's mother and the family;

August of 1843 the Poor Law Inquiry Commission for Scotland gathered evidence around the Highlands, interviewing a few people at Ullapool such as the Minister Alexander Ross and the fish curer, Alexander MacKenzie. The Commission then went into the community and visited nineteen recipients of aid to determine their situation. The following is transcribed from "Minutes of Evidence taken before the Poor Law Inquiry Commission for Scotland", PAGE 445;

      12. Widow Thomas Ross, aged seventy-three. Allowance 4s. a year. She lives with a married daughter and son-in-law - the latter a pensioner. The son-in-law has a house in feu, and three-fourths of an acre of land attached to it, for which he pays, inclusive of feu-duty, a rent of 2 15s. He keeps a cow. His family consists of three children, from twenty-two to fifteen years of age. His mother-in-law is supported by him. She has a comfortable bed, and her room is tolerably well furnished.



Parish of Lochbroom is geographically one of the largest in Scotland, though always low in population. See map at

No Maclellans in the Lochbroom records I am acquainted with, however as you note the name is variable, I am familiar with MacLennans from Reiff in Coigach (the northwest third of the Parish) who settled at Cape Breton in the early 19th century and became known as "MacLellans". That family has story of coming from Contin in late 18th century, but Head was a blacksmith who settled at Achnahaird area and lists of Jacobite Prisoners in 1746 include a blacksmith MacLennan from there suggesting an earlier history. The Reiff/Cape Breton family may be tied to your Lochbroom'Pictou family, or just a coincidence.

Scotland / Re: Middle Names
« on: Sunday 06 March 16 23:47 GMT (UK)  »
A few years ago I came across "Caroline" as a middle or forename in certain Canadian MacKenzies a generation away from Scotland, beginning in the 1820s. I failed to find a Caroline family member they could have been named for, and it occured to me it was an uncommon forename in late 18th century generally. Freecen had just completed their transcription of the 1841 census, so I did a search to try to see if I could see what year bracket it came in to common use.

Pretty certain it was a name to honour the "Princess Diana" of her day, Princess Caroline of Brunswick, see

Ages over 15 were rounded down to the nearest five year multiple, but allowing for +/-2 years 1838, 1833, and 1828 it was possible to extract them all. Some small error as a few enumerators ignored the rounding down rule, but should not be more than a handful each year.

Historically there always were a few Carolines in U.K, but for the most part looks to have been a name that came with the infamous princess. I stopped with ones born 1791 or earlie, as older than that deaths would throw it off...

1792-1796    124
1797-1801    201
1802-1806    313
1807-1811    482
1812-1816    780
1817-1821    1597
1822-1826    2534
1827-1831    2342
1832-1836    2459
1837-1841    2345

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