Author Topic: Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records  (Read 194 times)

Offline HelenMurphyGroves

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Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records
« on: Friday 02 April 21 02:32 BST (UK) »
Hi,

I don’t know if anyone can help me but I’m having a lot of difficulty finding my grandfather’s family.

He was born out of wedlock In August 1928 and from the pieces of information we have been given over the years, I actually think I have found his biological father (though, of course, I can’t be 100% certain). The tricky thing has been tracing his mother and the grandmother who raised him. These are the things I know for certain:

My grandad was John Joseph Murphy he was born in 1928 and lived in Clonegal, Carlow. He has actually lived all over the country and married my grandmother, Maura McNamee, in Offaly. He had 9 children and moved to England in the 60s and after returning to Offaly in the 90s, he came back to England and eventually died of cancer in Smethwick England in 2010. His mother was Harriet Byrne nee Murphy who died in 1992. Her husband was James Byrne and, when married, they moved to O’Hanrahan road in Carlow. My grandfather’s half siblings were Maura and Jimmy (Jimmy died 10 August in the 1960s and I know Maura was a nun at one point and moved to Queens, New York). I know his grandmother was Annie Murphy and she always lived in Clonegal - she died when he was about 15, after which, he went to the army as his stepfather wouldn’t let him move in with them (as I understand it).

It seems mad that I have (more than likely) found his unknown father and can only find information on my great grandmother as it relates to her husband (ie family grave, house move and marriage) and even more crazy that I can’t find his grandmother who stayed in clonegal. I know I’m up against it with the name “Murphy” but clonegal wasn’t a large place so I would have thought it would be easier than it’s proving to be. I have been using ancestry.co.uk, findagrave, family knowledge and articles from various Carlow history publications. I am new to this but I used to undertake investigations as part of my job so I’m a bit like a dog with a bone when it comes to these things.

I loved my grandad very much and have been thinking about him a lot lately. He was quite inscrutable in many ways because he had a tough auld life and he was very reluctant to talk about his history as it upset him too much. Now he has passed I don’t want my family to disappear into the annals of history just yet and I think it’s time that we reclaimed  our identity. more than that, I don’t want my grandfather’s legacy to be one of shame - we are not ashamed of him, we love him and I hope he knew that it the end.

Any help or tips would be gratefully received.


Offline Maiden Stone

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Re: Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records
« Reply #1 on: Friday 02 April 21 14:54 BST (UK) »
Welcome to RootsChat.
Do you have information from your grandfather's birth registration? Where was he born and who was the informant of the birth? Do you know where he was baptised and names of sponsor(s)?
Have you found the death registration of Annie Murphy, your grandfather's grandma who brought him up?
Have you found any likely Murphy families on 1901 or 1911 census? There was no 1921 census in Ireland. Next one was 1926 so we won't see it for 5 years.
How old was Harriet, your great-grandmother, when she died? Do you have her father's name + witnesses from her marriage registration?

Might this enquiry receive more informed responses on the Carlow board? I'll wait & see what others think before suggesting a moderator moves it.
Cowban

Offline Maiden Stone

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Re: Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records
« Reply #2 on: Friday 02 April 21 15:13 BST (UK) »
Ireland Reaching Out is a family history website for the Irish diaspora. It's organised by county and civil parish. https://irelandxo.com
Clonegal village is in the combined parish of Clonegal-Kildavin. 5 miles from Bunclody, County Wexford.
https://irelandxo.com/ireland/carlow/clonegal-carlow
There are only a few posts on the message board for Clonegal. There are several Murphy enquiries on County Carlow message board.
Cowban


Offline MonicaL

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Re: Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records
« Reply #3 on: Saturday 03 April 21 22:04 BST (UK) »
Welcome from me too  :)

From what you mention, this would be Harriet's marriage in 1939 https://civilrecords.irishgenealogy.ie/churchrecords/images/marriage_returns/marriages_1939/08866/5206498.pdf

This just shows her as full age. Do you have an estimated birth year for her? Maybe from her age at death if you have this. No mention of a father so mother Annie unmarried?

Monica
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Offline Maiden Stone

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Re: Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records
« Reply #4 on: Sunday 04 April 21 15:55 BST (UK) »

From what you mention, this would be Harriet's marriage in 1939 https://civilrecords.irishgenealogy.ie/churchrecords/images/marriage_returns/marriages_1939/08866/5206498.pdf

Harriet's address may have been her employer's as she was a housekeeper.
Any idea who witness Esther Breen was?
Do you know when Harriet's last child was born? That can be helpful when trying to estimate a birth year for a mother.
Cowban

Offline MonicaL

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Re: Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records
« Reply #5 on: Sunday 04 April 21 18:49 BST (UK) »
Wondering if this household in 1911 could have a connection to Annie, Harriet's mother. Headed up by an unmarried Hetty Murphy in Clonegal Town:

www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1911/Carlow/Clonegal/Clonegall_Town/311721/

Not sure on ages for this Hetty, 29 in 1901 and 50 in 1911  :-\ Because Hetty was unmarried, her 1911 census entry does not show how many children she had.

Added: And in 1901 www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1901/Carlow/Clonegal/Clonegal_Town/1041962/ with an Annie as sister to Hetty.

Hetty can be a variant to Harriet www.whatsinaname.net/php/search.php?action=search2&search_name=hetty

Would really help to find a birth reg for Harriet now...

Monica
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Offline Maiden Stone

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Re: Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records
« Reply #6 on: Monday 05 April 21 14:56 BST (UK) »

Hetty can be a variant to Harriet www.whatsinaname.net/php/search.php?action=search2&search_name=hetty

Would really help to find a birth reg for Harriet now...

I tried variants for Harriet.
One of a batch of registrations in Carlow district for births at Carlow workhouse in 1902 was Esther Murphy, mother Annie, no father's name. Informant was workhouse occupier. What happened to baby Esther?
Among Henrietta birth registrations was a sad one in Millstreet district, County Cork. for date and place of birth "living newborn child found exposed on 20th July 1909 at Caher..." (can't read rest of place) Informant "Julia Murphy who found the child", registered Feb. 1910.
https://www.irishgenealogy.ie/en/

Other possibilities are that Harriet was registered under a different first name or before she'd been given a name, or that she that she was born somewhere else.
Cowban

Offline Maiden Stone

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Re: Murphys of Clonegal - Difficulty finding Irish records
« Reply #7 on: Monday 05 April 21 15:30 BST (UK) »

My grandad was John Joseph Murphy he was born in 1928 and lived in Clonegal, Carlow.

 I know his grandmother was Annie Murphy and she always lived in Clonegal - she died when he was about 15, after which, he went to the army as his stepfather wouldn’t let him move in with them (as I understand it).

 I can’t find his grandmother who stayed in clonegal. I know I’m up against it with the name “Murphy” but clonegal wasn’t a large place so I would have thought it would be easier than it’s proving to be.


There were a few death registrations for elderly women named Annie Murphy in Carlow from late 1930's -1940's, assuming that she died after Harriet's married, that she died in Carlow and that she died as Annie Murphy. (2 of my Irish ancestors were called Annie or Ann but it wasn't the official name of either.)
Only 1 had Clonegal as abode. She died in a nursing home 1949.
Another interesting one was a spinster with a son 1941.
https://www.irishgenealogy.ie/en/
Age recorded at death wasn't accurate for some old people, especially if they died away from home or informant wasn't a close relative. (Stated ages on death registrations 1937 & 1940 for 2 of my relatives were wrong by around a decade and the informant of one death was son of deceased.)
Ages of many old people on 1901 census were wrong.
Cowban