Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Sduddy » Mon Jul 25, 2022 5:44 pm

Hi Jimbo

Two things occurred to me as I was reading the above:
(1) Barbara Jean (who calls herself "Mart2542" on the Reddit message board) says that her grandfather remembered the address of Red McNamara’s house (290 Loudon Avenue) and remembered shooting birds from the turret window. Should not that be enough to link him to the Red McNamara family? The only doubt for me is whether that information was reliable; it was given to her by her grandmother, most likely, as she herself was only 9 when her grandfather died - her grandmother had also given her some other information which Barbara had later found to be incorrect.
(2) John McNamara’s mother was Mary McCoy, but it had never occurred to Barbara Jean that aunt Laura and Uncle Will might be McCoys (not McNamaras). It falls to “Puhalalu” on the message board to tell her that h/she that has found a William R McCoy owning a plot in the Jackson map just south of Campbelltown. Barbara Jean gets back to puhalulu and says “Thank you! etc, etc ” So it seems “aunt” Laura and “uncle” Will really were her grandfather’s aunt and uncle.

Anyway, Barbara Jean will be delighted to hear that she can look at the St. Paul’s baptism register without going to Lexington. That was a great find.

Thanks for explaining the confusion about the ages reported for Bridget Williams McNamara. You haven’t said how you got back to Dromcolliher. Did Percy French whisper in your ear?:

Your mention of the border states between north and south in the Civil War reminded me that William Henry Hurlbert seemed to see some similarity between them and Ireland, but his explanation is too difficult for me. If you go to “Ireland Under Coercion: The Diary of an American,” by William Henry Hurlbert, Vol. II (1888): ... 4511-h.htm and scroll down to “Epilogue,” you will see that he starts the epilogue by saying, “Not once, but a hundred times, during the visits to Ireland recorded in this book, I have been reminded of the state of feeling and opinion with existed in the Border States, as they were called, of the American Union, after the invasion of Virginia by a piratical band under John Brown …”


P.S. I haven’t watched Downton Abbey at all.

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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Jimbo » Tue Jul 26, 2022 4:53 am

Hi Sheila,

Yes, I agree that the reliability of the information provided to Barbara Jean about her grandfather John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947) might be an issue. In that regard, when you state that "John McNamara's mother was Mary McCoy", it would be better to state "John McNamara's mother was reported to be Mary McCoy on his Social Security application and railroad retirement paperwork". And the fact that John McNamara consistently gave a birth date of 30th of April on various records doesn't make it true until a birth or baptism record can be found to prove it. And so on with the other information provided.

The McCoy angle is very good. It is not stated in the posting that you referenced, but William R. McCoy was married to an Emma, not a Laura. However, it might point us to whose farm(s) John McNamara might have been working on in Preble County. I forgot to mention in my last posting, that Barbara Jean had made a third separate posting on the same topic only 1 month ago (the posting history is available if you click on her username). It doesn't provide any new information (actually less), and the 40 plus comments are pretty much the same as the prior postings, but it does appear that the identity of "uncle Will" and "aunt Laura" still has not been resolved: ... ggestions/

My approach was to research the McNamara families of Lexington, and put aside for the moment the various stories handed down about John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947). Sheila, let's not swap horses in midstream. The reliability of the evidence is an important issue, but so is the availability of records in Fayette County. The baptism and marriage records for St. Paul's Church in Lexington are readily available on-line, which is great, but how about other records?
Is Fayette's Court House, Which Together With Valuable Treasures, Is Destroyed by Fire Yesterday, Starting in the Belfry Stairs,

One of the most disastrous visitations of fire that Lexington has ever experienced, and one that for a time threatened destruction to the best part of the business district of the city made its appearance about the middle of the forenoon yesterday and before the flames had spent their fury the Court House, with some of its most valuable treasures, had been reduced to ruins.

The awful transformation was the work of less than an hour, and today only blackened wall enclosing the disfigured basement and second floor remain to remind one of the beautiful and costly edifice that stood on its foundations yesterday.

. . . [many paragraphs later] . . .

With the first alarm of fire the clerks and various officials had either carried out the valuable records or put them in vaults, and except private losses by Judge Parker and others, all valuable papers were saved.
. . .

The Morning Herald, Lexington, 15 May 1897
Were all valuable papers saved or only the most important? Unlike in Ireland where civil birth, marriage, and death records are centrally located at the irishgenealogy website, in the USA you have to often go to each individual county, and their helpfulness varies greatly. "Our office does not do research" is the first sentence on the Fayette County Clerk's genealogy page. Death certificates are commonly located at a county clerk's office, but the helpful Fayette County Clerk doesn't say boo about their availability: ... search.htm

The Kentucky Department of Libraries and Archives website is much more helpful about the availability of pre-1911 death records: ... ofilm.aspx

However, it is bad news. Death certificates for Lexington are only available starting 1894, and for Fayette County starting 1896. Perhaps during the fire of 1897, the Fayette county clerks didn't save all the old death records after all? The City of Louisville has death records back to 1866. Microfilm roll numbers are provided, but these records are also available on the ancestry website ($). FamilySearch (free) has Kentucky death records (1911-1967), here is the 18 September 1912 death record for Mathew McNamara, Jr. :

We don't know the parents of John McNamara (≈1884-1947), but we know he was an orphan. If Lexington and Fayette County death records were available for the late 1870's and 1880's, it would be possible to search for any McNamara's who died at a young age (say, age 18 to 40's) in search of John's father and mother. There are not that many McNamara's in Kentucky compared to New York City. Would also have to keep in mind that a child could be sent to an orphanage when only one parent was deceased, and the child could not be cared for by the surviving parent. Or perhaps even both parents were unable to care for their child.

I'm purposely ignoring every story that has been passed down to Barbara Jean about the parents of John McNamara (≈1884-1947) and keeping an open mind to all possibilities. Including that John McNamara was not born in Lexington.

I discovered that the Lexington death records were missing when trying to obtain one for Mathew "Red Mack" McNamara. He was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Lexington, but no year or date of death was chiseled into the small "Father" marker which surrounds the large McNamara headstone edifice, photos available on the findagrave website: ... w-mcnamara

The contributor has a date of birth of "25 Dec 1822" for Mathew McNamara, but no source for this information, so likely bogus. For the "Mother" headstone, belonging to Bridget Williams McNamara, findagrave has 1825 as a year of birth which is plumb crazy. Among their children, there are two Mathew McNamara's listed on findagrave; the one with dates "1876-1876" should be eliminated. So it's difficult to trust that Mathew "Red Mack" McNamara died in 1887 based solely on what is being reported on findagrave. Luckily, however, there is support in the comments: "Mathew McNamara, 64, dies at home at Spring and Main." according to "June 29, 1887 Lexington Daily Transcript p. 1 col. 7".

Searching the newspaper archives, I was able to find additional support for the timing of his death:
Mrs. Mathew McNamara has qualified as executrix of the will of Mathew McNamara, deceased. The estate is worth about $40,000.
The Courier-Journal, Louisville, Kentucky, 8 July 1887
The above article is from a Louisville newspaper. Searching Lexington newspapers for the same time period, there were zero search results. Why? The Lexington newspapers included in on-line newspaper archives, that I have access to, all start in 1888 (there are a few early 19th century papers). I also checked Library of Congress, Chronicling America, but the newspapers listed appear to be on microfilm at various libraries, not digitized and available to search on-line. Also, the collection at the Lexington Library (links in prior posting) appears to be mostly the early decades of the 19th century, none in the 1880's.

That is more bad news as far as searching for the parents of John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947). If he was indeed orphaned in Lexington, the local newspapers would have covered the possible death of his mother or father. The death records for Fayette county don't appear to exist for the 1880's, the issue is not one of on-line availability. For Lexington newspapers from 1880 to 1887, it is not very clear if they will be digitized and available on-line in the future.

This is of importance, of course, only if you believe that John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947) was born in Lexington. It is interesting on his Social Security application that John apparently was not aware that Lexington was located in Fayette county (from a reddit comment).

With regards to Preble County in Ohio, where John McNamara (≈1884-1947) had worked on the farm of uncle Will and aunt Laura, the newspaper archives only had the period 1847 to 1887. However, across the state border in Richmond, Indiana, the local news of Eaton, Ohio was included in a social column:
Eaton, O., Aug. 30.—Mr. and Mrs. Harry G. King are home . . .

John McNamara was here from Cincinnati visiting friends.

The third consecutive defeat for the Eaton ball team was tendered them Sunday at the South Side park by the Cincinnati Pirates. The score stood 4 to 2. The game was one of the most interesting played here this season, both team playing good ball. . . . The game was witnessed by the largest crowd of the season.

Palladium-Item, Richmond, Indiana, 30 August 1909
In 1909, John McNamara was still single. One year later in 1910 he returned to Eaton with his wife and child (as BJM mentioned in reddit postings). Pity that the local Eaton newspaper for the period of John McNamara's time there (say, 1898 to 1905) as there could be references to who he was living with.
Mr. and Mrs. John McNamara and child of Cincinnati spent Saturday and Sunday in Eaton with friends.

Palladium-Item, Richmond, Indiana, 30 August 1910
Sheila, thank you very much for the link to the Dromcolliher song by Percy French. That was great, wasn't expecting to hear from him again. It was an interesting article with its mention of Anthony McAuliffe. In the Griffith Valuation for the town of Dromcolliher, Bridget Williams at plot 17c was on Pound Street; a Richard McAuliffe at plot 4 on Market Place, and a John McAuliffe at plot 9 on Chapel Street. On google maps, for the village of Dromcolliher, if you are at the Tasty Chinese Takeaway at "The Square" and head southeast (on R522), you'll come upon the Charleville Road turnoff (a Y), verge right following the sign for "Henry's Cafe" and this is "Pound Street" where Bridget Williams lived in the 1850's. Henry's Cafe on the left has a large Irish tricolor flag out front, a beautiful old stone building. The houses on Pound Street look very old, but have no idea if they would have been around in the 1850's. Curious how the widow Bridget Daley Williams of Pound Street, her sister Elizabeth Daley, and brother Patrick Daley, all from Dromcolliher, ended up in Lexington, Kentucky.

Sheila, to discover their baptism records at Drumcollogher, I simply searched on the ancestry website for any Williams born in Ireland to a father named Thomas Williams and mother named Bridget Daly. This led to probably two names, as I remember, and had to tweak various spellings of Daly and Thomas to obtain the four Williams that I did. The marriage record was then easy to find, as well as the GV report. I wasn't expecting to find any results but having the parents, and sibling names from USA records it ended up being very easy (but would never have attempted this if I had to pay for each individual search as required in the past). The missing James Williams, or Jacobus, might still be in the parish records, hidden in a strange transcription.

To be continued,

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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Sduddy » Tue Jul 26, 2022 10:08 am

Hi Jimbo

Thank you for that swift reply! It brings home to me just how much you work you have done, in spite of the difficulty with records, i.e. lack of records, or unavailability of records online.

You’ve also done a good job with locating the home place of Bridget Daley Williams (in Pound Street, Dromcolliher).

McCoy is not a Clare name (the only McCoy in Co. Clare in 1901 is from Co. Limerick), but the name is to be found in Co. Kerry and Co. Limerick. I found a William McCoy in Griffith’s Valuation as the Lessor of a vacant house and garden in Pound Street, Dromcolliher. Bridget Williams is listed on the same page. William McCoy has Lot 19, while Bridget Williams is leasing Lot 17c from a Patrick Fitzgerald. I suspect William McCoy is leasing from someone else, and is subletting the vacant lot.
This William McCoy might be uncle Will, but we will never know, of course.


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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Jimbo » Sat Jul 30, 2022 7:14 am

Hi Sheila,

Interesting that William McCoy was a lessor in Dromcolliher and so close to the plot that Bridget Williams was leasing. Is it possible to know the month and year when this Griffith Valuation for Dromcolliher was taken? The timing is very important for the Daley & Williams families who based upon their marriage records appear to have arrived in Kentucky in the early 1850's.

Something to consider, and I don't believe this was mentioned in any of the reddit postings, but John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947) in census reports always stated that both his father and mother were born in Kentucky. As John did here in 1910:

So the William McCoy of Dromcolliher would be a bad fit to be "uncle" Will, unless his parents later moved to Kentucky and a daughter, Mary, was born there. And McCoy in Kentucky might typically be more Scottish than Irish. I reckon Barbara Jean's reddit posting below might be going in the direction of McCoy's who were of Scottish descent:
Like you, I do believe my grandfather was the child of one of Red Mack's sons with one of the saloon girls. . . . The McCoys were poor mountain people in Kentucky. Maybe one young girl made her way to Lexington to work in one of Red Mack's saloons!
For me, and I reckon many Americans reading the above, the suggestion that the "McCoys were poor mountain people in Kentucky" was a reference to the Hatfield and McCoy Feud. Sheila, not sure if you would have heard of this famous feud being in Ireland. You certainly would have if the movie "Roseanna McCoy" (1949) ever made it to the Irish cinema or television. However, from the movie poster it may have been a little too spicy for conservative Ireland of the 1950's:

Roseanna McCoy, 1949 movie poster.jpg
Roseanna McCoy, 1949 movie poster.jpg (71.29 KiB) Viewed 359 times

The Hatfield's lived in West Virginia and McCoy's across the river in Kentucky, their family feud is part of American folklore and got its start in the American Civil War. Most of the men from both families fought for the Confederacy, but Asa Harmon McCoy fought in a Kentucky unit for the Union. When Asa returned home, he was murdered, and so started a whole slew of murders lasting decades. Asa Harmon's brother was named Randolph McCoy, who married their first cousin, Sarah McCoy. They were the grandchildren of a William McCoy (born 1750), of Scottish descent, not Irish. Randolph and Sarah McCoy ended up having 17 children together. Many of their sons were murdered in the feud. One daughter, Roseanna McCoy ended up falling in love with a Hatfield which kicked off more bloodshed. According to the family tree on the wikipedia biography, of the 17 children, one daughter was a Mary McCoy born in 1858. ... McCoy_feud

Did Mary McCoy leave the rural mountains of Kentucky for the city of Lexington to become a saloon girl at the Palace Hotel owned by Red Mack? Unlikely, of course, but if we pretend she did, it would be inconceivable that one of her McCoy brothers left their Kentucky home, to settle north of the Mason Dixon Line (the broader definition, not the technical one), to settle in Ohio (the home of "uncle" Will). The Mason Dixon Line, I reckon, is an incredibly important clue in solving the true identity of the mysterious John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947).

Getting back to researching the Daley family, the fact that Lexington death records start in 1894 is disappointing and was not easy to determine. The ancestry website has a collection "Kentucky, U.S. Death Records, 1852 -1965" whose title can be misleading. For source information, they list the microfilm numbers but don't provide any dates. Not too many people would know that microfilm roll #7011804 are Lexington death records which start in 1894. I noticed the same issue when searching for Will and Probate records in Tennessee, the ancestry date range was quite broad, but most their records I recall were from Memphis, and none for Knoxville.

To determine the parents of the three siblings from Dromcolliher it would have been good to obtain the death record for Mary Daley Williams (who died after 1881) and Patrick Daley (who died between 1870 and 1875). Elizabeth Daley Riley died in 1905 in Lexington. Unfortunately, what is available is a "Copy of Death Record" with only abbreviated information which doesn't include the names of the parents of the deceased. I discovered this also for her niece, Catherine Williams Sullivan, who died in 1902, and only a "Copy" was available in on-line records. The informant for Elizabeth Riley was likely her only son, Judge John Riley, who as an informant for other death records (e.g., James Williams in 1907) was pretty clued in on his family history. The original death records might be available somewhere.

Another way to determine the parents of the Dromcolliher siblings was the naming of their children. Unfortunately, both sisters had only one son, who if under Irish tradition would have been named after the paternal grandfather of the child. Patrick Daley had seven children, but two children are unknown including a possible first born child. Assuming that Timothy Daley, born about 1859 (no baptism record found), was their first born son, it's possible that the father of the Dromcolliher siblings might be a Timothy Daley?

In the 1870 census for Lexington, there is a Timothy Daly, age 70 (born ≈1800), born in Ireland, occupation "at home" (retired?), living in dwelling #38 by the census taker count. In the prior census page, in dwelling #37 is Mathew "Red Mack" McNamara as well as his wife Bridget Williams McNamara (""age 45"'), the daughter of Bridget Daley Williams. Timothy Daly had real estate valued at $6,000 and personal property of $200, so was quite well-off or "living in high cotton". Dwelling #38 is not your typical household, and not sure what to make of it. Timothy Daley is listed last in the household of 7 individuals, all of whom were reported to be Black except for the Irish born Daley. Two young couples and two children; the men's occupations were "Hand in Hemp Factory" and "Stable Hand". The census taker may have made a mistake, and Timothy Daley really belonged in dwelling #37, and when this page ran out of reporting rows, he got put in with dwelling #38 on the following page.

#37 McNamara:
#38 Timothy Daly:

Was this Timothy Daley, born about 1800, according to the not so reliable 1870 census taker, the father of the three siblings from Dromcolliher? No, he appears to be their brother. The 1880 census includes a supplementary mortality schedule of those who died in the prior year. Timothy Daley, single, a pike contractor, age 70, so born about 1809, died of consumption in Lexington in August 1879; he had been a resident of Fayette County for 27 years. Since he was single and likely much younger than reported in the 1870 census (similar to Bridget Williams McNamara's age being overstated), he could not be their father, but likely a brother. Timothy Daley had a considerable estate of $6,000 in 1870, his probate or will records might prove this family relationship. Also, if Lexington newspapers for this time period become available on-line in the future, Timothy Daley's obituary might list his siblings.

1880 Mortality Schedule:

The fire at the Lexington Court House brought the local fire department under a lot of ridicule in the newspapers with many comparisons to the better prepared Cincinnati fire department. To their defense one city leader noted that "while it has developed that thousands of people knew how to put out the Court House fire, he noticed that nobody but the abused firemen made any effort to do it" (The Morning Herald, Lexington, 20 May 1897).

William T. Sullivan (1865-1949), the son of Catherine Williams Sullivan (1836-1902), and grandson of Bridget Daley Williams, was reported as a fireman and living with his mother in the Lexington 1900 census. Given his age, he was also likely a fireman at the time of the Lexington Court House fire of 1897. The reputation of the Lexington fire department continued to suffer ridicule by the press. In July 1901, it was William Sullivan who was driving the fire truck that broke its axle and never made it to the fire — the grocery and home of his mother Catherine Sullivan of Davis Bottom in Lexington (see article in family tree).

William T. Sullivan (1865-1949) was counted twice in the 1900 census, both at home with his mother and at the fire house with his colleagues. The cause of this double counting was occupational; when his brother James Sullivan was double counted in the 1870 census as living with his mother (on 19 August 1870) and with his aunt (on 5 July 1870), it was due to timing.

1900 Home:
1900 Fire House:

Sheila, in a recent post you mentioned the double counting in the Irish census, and I had looked into this a few years back. The 1901 census was "For members of this family and their visitors, boarders, servants, &c, who slept or abode in this house on the night of Sunday, the 31st of March, 1901." I believe, based upon a small audit sample, that there was considerable double counting in the 1901 Irish census in certain occupations, namely "cattle dealers". The root cause of this census double counting, a topic hitherto not well researched, was the popularity of Irish fairs held on the 1st of April. Below is the Waterford and Limerick Railway advertisement listing all the upcoming April Fairs for 1889 (other years had consistent dates), notice how many were held on the 1st of April:

The_Waterford_News_Sat__Mar_30__1889_.jpg (239.48 KiB) Viewed 359 times

Cattle dealers in order to attend a Fair on the 1st of April would have had to frequently travel a day or so in advance. Sheila, I noted this during your long thread on Michael G. Considine and Daniel O'Connell:


Michael Considine, born in 1866, was the son of Patrick Considine and Elizabeth Rickards, and a prosperous Ennis cattle dealer (family tree on page 6 in above link). Not to be confused with his first cousin, and likely double first cousin, Michael Considine, born in 1861, the son of John Considine and Susan Rickards. Sheila, you will recall that it was the elder Michael Considine cousin who as a young victualler on 9 July 1882 was returning to Ennis by car (horse & buggy) having made a delivery at Cullane House, then being boycotted (tsk, tsk), when about 3:20 pm he came upon the scene of an injured and bleeding John Doloughty lying on the road very close to Knockanean School (see page 22 and 23).

Michael Considine, born in 1866, at the time of the 1901 census was in Doonbeg for the April Fair. And his wife Elizabeth Considine, married, accurately did not report her husband as living with her: ... g/1078484/ ... t/1070033/

However, Michael Considine in Doonbeg was boarding with another Ennis cattle dealer named John Miller, age 53, married. I'm fairly certain that he was the same as the "John Millar", age 53, married, occupation victualler, living at house 14 Cloughleagh Road in Ennis; thus double counted in 1901: ... d/1069248/

So 1 out of 2 cattle dealers / victuallers, granted a rather small audit sample, were double counted in the 1901 Irish Census. Fortunately, it would be possible to expand the sample size as boarding in the Thomas Considine household of Doonbeg were an additional seven cattle dealers: ... g/1078389/

I suspect that the cattle dealer Michael Considine would have made annual visits to the April Fair in Doonbeg, as his father Patrick Considine (≈1830 - 1887), also a cattle dealer, would have done before him. This would account for the random bit of news from County Clare reported in the Irish World newspaper of New York:
Patrick Considine of Ennis donated £10 towards the erection of the Doonbeg Catholic church.

Irish World, New York, 18 December 1875, page 2

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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Sduddy » Tue Aug 02, 2022 8:59 am

Hi Jimbo

According to the Irish genealogy toolkit site, Griffith’s Valuation for the county of Limerick was published in 1851-52: ... ionmap.pdf

As for William McCoy, who was lessor of a vacant site in Dromcolliher, I think he is probably the William McCoy whose death was registered in Newcastle Union (Co. Limerick) in 1867, aged 71 (the image is not yet available online). You are probably right in thinking that “uncle” Will McCoy was a descendant of Scotch-Irish early settlers. Thank you for the story of the Hatfield-McCoy very bloody feud. No, I never heard of the feud, or the film. I saw no film until about 1960. I remember “The Ten Commandments” and “The Song of Bernadette” and another one about a first Holy Communion. That last one was preceded by a shorter film on the ascent of Mount Everest by Hillary and Norgay, which was truly terrifying (a climber disappears down a snow-covered crevice).

By the way, the buildings you noted in Dromcolliher are the old creamery and the courthouse. The creamery is of historical interest as it was the first co-operative creamery set up by Horace Plunkett (in 1889). The building was restored about 35 years ago and is now the National Dairy Co-operative Museum and Plunkett Heritage Centre (plus Henry’s Café). According to this architectural survey, most of the original building still remains: ... r-limerick. It is quite likely that some old houses were demolished in order to make space for the original building. If you have plenty of time, see this video which explains the workings of the creamery at the turn of the 19th century:

I would say that there are many much older buildings in Dromcolliher, as some of the two-storey shops we see today began life as one-storey thatched houses – dating from anywhere in the 19th century, or even before. For anyone interested, this article on roofing in Co. Clare: ... hitecture/ includes a link to another article, “Vernacular architecture in Doonbeg, County Clare,” by Risteard Ua Cróinín, in which Ua Cróinin gives us a good clue as to how to detect such a building:
Many of the commercial buildings in the area, including shops, post offices and public houses tend to be two-storey, gable-ended buildings of three, four or five bays. Although many were originally constructed as two-storey buildings during the late 19th or early 20th centuries, it is obvious from the asymmetrical arrangements of the chimneys that many were originally constructed as single storey traditional cottages which were extended upwards at a later time.
I was disappointed to see that Ua Cróinín makes only one mention of galvanized iron, and disappointed that he does not explain that it was often used in the 20th century to cover an old thatched roof. Maybe this was not done in Doonbeg. The galvanize, in time, turned to a rusty colour. It can still be seen all over the place. It was often used for an outhouse, but also for old thatched dwelling houses. The galvanize roof holds a very humble position in Architecture, even in vernacular architecture, but it is a reliable indication of an old building. So I was pleased to see that galvanize is mentioned by Martin Perrill in connection with a dwelling house - see in his article, “The Heritage of Loughnehellia – Exploration of a Holding”: ... heilla.htm.
The farm house dating from before 1840
The original dwelling-house was a low, thatched, structure comprising a room and a kitchen. The site was cut into a hill with a trench around the foundation to take the water. Notable features include thickness of the walls and the large size of the stones that were used to build them. At some stage, a second, smaller, bedroom was grafted on to the west gable. The roof was lower than that of the existing building. The house was re-roofed with galvanize in 1964 but, by then, the roof of the annex had collapsed and was not replaced. Other features of the house are the small size of the two windows to the front and the low height of the door. The traditional half-door is still there.
Paddy Casey, also, mentions the galvanize, but as “corrugated iron,” and credits it with keeping the house of his ancestors intact: see topic “ Very Rev. Lord Fitzgerald and Vesey listed in Griffiths 1855”: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=59:
'family seat' sounds grand, doesn't it. It is a small abandoned 3-room farmhouse in a muddy field next to the river. Its thatched roof is long gone and has been replaced by corrugated iron which, fortunately, has kept the house intact and prevented it ending up like all the cabhals roundabout.
Jimbo, in one month this thread has made its way from galvanized soldiers to galvanized roofs, but it will make its way back again to the galvanized soldiers, I’m sure.


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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by smcarberry » Tue Aug 02, 2022 12:23 pm


Ah, yes, corrugated iron roofs -- as someone who grew up in farm country, I remember those. Sturdy, no-nonsense building material -- gets the job done. Part of the fabric of my formative years.

However, I actually chime in to pass along a somewhat-contemporary (1897) local account of the Hatfield-McCoy feud:
Front page, 2nd column from the left
mention of Randolph McCoy Jr, killed at age 18
1896 wedding of Aaron Hatfield to Mary McCoy ... y+mccoy%22

I have a personal connection to Kentucky and that era, in the person of my former mother-in-law, now deceased, who didn't speak much of her childhood years in KY but she didn't hesitate to trash-talk the Hatfield patriarch whom she called "Anse" which she said meant "devil." I guess she was solidly in the McCoy camp, which must have still been a thing decades after violent hostilities cooled down. My m-i-l was born a May, with a Slone mother, in the 1920s, not related to either side so far as I know.


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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Sduddy » Fri Aug 05, 2022 8:46 am

Hi Jimbo

I see that Griffith’s Valuation shows a Timothy Daly leasing a small parcel of land in the townland of Carroward East in the parish of Dromcolliher. It is in Carroward East that both the creamery and the courthouse are situated.
I was interested to see that there is a neighbourhood called Limerick south of the city of Louisville, Kentucky. One explanation is that many Limerick people came to Louisville in the 1850s: ... k-kentucky


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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Jimbo » Sat Aug 06, 2022 1:33 am

Hi Sheila,

Thank you very much for providing the link to the useful map of when the Griffith Valuation was published by Irish county. Pity that County Clare was published so late, in 1855, since many lease holders would have left Ireland in the early 1850's. Would the publish date reflect when the survey was actually taken or could it reflect, say, one year prior?

And thanks for the discovery of Timothy Daly of Carroward East in the parish of Dromcolliher, which would indeed be the townland where the creamery and current museum would be located. I see now that I misinterpreted where Bridget Williams of Carroward West was living in Plot 17c. In Carroward West, Plot 1 consisted of the southern section of the town of Dromcolliher, divided between Chapel Street and Pound Street, with many individual houses (including the vacant house #19 of William McCoy). Plot 2 was south of the town. Plot 17 was over 118 acres leased by Patrick Fitzgerald, of which Bridget Williams in Plot 17c had a tiny plot of land. Within the townland of Carroward West, Plot 17 was on the border of County Cork, and being in the southwest corner of the townland it was a good distance from Pound Street.

This mistake did lead to the interesting Dromcolliher history of the first co-operative creamery set up by Horace Plunkett in 1889. Sheila, thank you for providing those links. To arrive at the Plunkett Museum you must have ignored the instructions I gave, and took a left at the "Y" intersection.

The short history of the Limerick neighborhood in Louisville was interesting. In addition to the Louisville & Nashville Railroad, some Irish would have also gotten work on widening and maintenance of the Louisville and Portland Canal, built to bypass the falls on the Ohio River. ... land_Canal

Mary Williams Sexton, the eldest daughter born in Dromcolliher to Thomas Williams and Bridget Daley, appears to have lived in Louisville her entire American experience. There is a good chance that the entire Daley and Williams clan were initially in Louisville prior to settling in Lexington. Also there is a greater likelihood that they first arrived in New Orleans than New York, and travelled up the Mississippi & Ohio rivers to get to Kentucky. There was an anti-Catholic immigrant (Irish and German) riot, called "Bloody Monday", in Louisville on 6 August 1855. This Saturday will be the 167th anniversary. If the Daley and Williams families of Lexington had indeed first settled in Louisville, the rioting may have contributed to their decision to move to Lexington.

Hi Sharon, thank you for the link to the 1896 newspaper article and useful newspaper website. I spent a short time looking for Lexington newspapers in the 1870's and 1880's, but will have to try again another day. The Hatfield-McCoy feud would be well known by everyone in the region and throughout the United States, much more so than it would be today. In trying to find the mysterious "uncle" William of the mysterious John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947), I also came upon a more recent account of the Hatfield-McCoy feud:
Not All Killed Yet.
Nolan, W. Va., Oct. 6.—William McCoy, a young member of the McCoy family, shot and mortally wounded Everett Thompson, a son-in-law of the Hatfields. The tragedy is the outgrowth of a feud which has existed for twenty years.
The Richmond Item, Richmond, Indiana, 6 October 1903
With regards John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947), who was orphaned at a young age according to his family history, I'm surprised that he would know the maiden name of his mother. Mary McCoy was reported twice as his mother, both times late in his life, on his Social Security application and railroad retirement paperwork. But his mother's name was left blank by family members on his detailed funeral contract (an attachment by a reddit contributor in latest posting). Unless John McNamara lived with a McCoy uncle, how would he know the maiden name of his mother? There is a strong possibility that when faced with a railroad retirement or social security application question, and not wanting to answer "I don't know", he simply made up a response, and was twice consistent in doing so. Especially if he wanted to manufacture a family history with roots south of the Mason Dixon Line, the name "Mary McCoy" would be a very good choice as such a well known Kentucky name.

One response to Barbara Jean's latest reddit posting provided a link to the Fayette County Death Register, 1886 - 1902. This is a death register and not individual death records which start in Lexington in 1894. The beginning years are incomplete. 1886 has only 4 entries. 1887 has none, thus no information for Mathew "Red Mack" McNamara. It really starts in 1888. There is a column for names of parents, but for Irish immigrants the response was typically "don't know"; it was mostly completed when children died. In later years, there was no attempt to complete parental information for anyone (death records are available for these years). The register has not yet been indexed by the Family Search website, which is why I didn't come across it when searching for specific names, but it is easy to search this document over a period of years: ... cat=222614

The mother of John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947) died when "he was young", but along with his birth year, it would be difficult to pinpoint what year she died. If "Mary McCoy" died in Lexington prior to 1888, then she would not be reported in the Fayette County death register. And if John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947) was not born in Lexington, and his mother was never in Kentucky or even south of the Mason Dixon Line, then she would also not be reported in the Fayette County death register.

To be continued.

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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Sduddy » Sat Aug 06, 2022 11:03 am

Hi Jimbo

Well, I’m not at all confident of the reliability of that tool-kit information on the publication dates, by county, of Griffith’s Valuation. This Wikipedia entry on Griffith’s Valuation gives different dates for publication – scroll down to “Contemporary use of and dates of Valuation":
I have some books on the making of the 6 inch Ordnance Survey map (often called the 1842 map), but only one book on Griffith’s Valuation: The Archives of the Valuation of Ireland 1830-1865, by Frances McGee (Four Courts Press, 2018), and that book brought home to me how very difficult the subject is. The long period of years taken to complete the Valuation meant that various Acts*, introduced during that period, changed the rules governing the process of valuation. One major change, which caused a great deal of revision, was the change from valuation of the whole townland to valuation of each tenement.
In Chapter 2, “Development of the system and the work of valuation,” McGee says,
In the initial valuation, the work always took place in four stages: (1) field work in which the data was collected, (2) office work in which the field data was used to prepare a preliminary valuation for appeals, (3) appeal hearings and follow-up work, and (4) production of a final valuation that was applied to taxation…. See Appendix C for the dates of the work in each county. (The Archives of the Valuation of Ireland 1830-1865, by Frances McGee (page 38))
Appendix C gives the years 1847-1852 for Co. Limerick. The Valuation started in the northern counties of Ireland and ended with the most southern counties. Most counties have two sets of dates. Co. Clare, for instance, has 1845-1848 in italics and also 1850-1855. The dates in italics are for Townland Valuation, whereas the dates 1850-1852 are for Tenement Valuation. The change from Townland Valuation to Tenement Valuation had come into effect before the process of valuation had begun in Limerick, Kerry, Cork, Tipperary and Waterford, so there is just one set of dates for each of those counties.
Anyway, what’s clear is that the process from (1) to (4) took some years in each county, and I don’t know at what stage the names of the tenants holding each lot were decided and recorded. I imagine that there was a lag of a couple of years, at least, between recording and publishing.

*Here is a sample showing the complexity of the process:
The 1846 act attempted to reconcile the different strands of theory and practice and is the most challenging text of all the valuation acts. In addition to making an important alteration in the content of the valuing work, it changed the relative importance of the organs of local government, although for the moment the old and new systems operated in parallel. The grand jury, the high constable of the barony, the churchwarden and select vestry of the parish as well as the grand jury-appointed committees continued to have a role. However, under this act new responsibilities were given to the boards of guardians of the poor law unions in a process controlled by central government that presaged the expansion of their activities into other local functions as the century progressed. (The Archives of the Valuation of Ireland 1830-1865, by Frances McGee (page 35))
Jimbo, you have given a lot to time and work to the Red McNamaras in Kentucky, but there are also the other McNamara families that Barbara Jean mentioned but did not explore. She dismissed them on the grounds that her grandfather was reported as describing her as the first girl born to the family in five generations. Your examination of the Red McNamara family sprang from this newpaper notice:
Oliver Springs, Nov. 4 [1910]. Mr. C.J. Jones is in Knoxville this week. —Mr. John McNamara has returned to Kentucky after spending a few days with home folks. —Mrs. Lindawood, of Wind Rock, was here Thursday.—Rev. Mr. Morton of Kentucky, preached in the Presbyterian church Sunday morning and evening.—Miss Mary Wiley had the misfortune of falling Monday and dislocating her hip.— . . .

Knoxville Sentinel, Tennessee, 5 November 1910
Might not John L McNamara of Oliver Springs, Tennesee, have been visiting one of those other McNamara families in Kentucky?
In the same posting, you mentioned finding a Thomas McNamara in the 1870 census, possibly the father of John L McNamara, and possibly the galvanized Yankee. In that 1870 census, he is aged 32 and living in a boarding house with about 20 railroad workers in Hunnewell Furnace in Greenup, Kentucky. I looked to see where Hunnewell is, and find it is a long way from both Louisville and Lexington. But, if his stay there was connected with the railroad, it was probably just temporary, and not worth further exploration.
I can see that your work on the Red McNamaras has helped you to discover what records are available for Kentucky and this knowledge will be helpful to other readers. Thanks, as always, for including links to interesting reports of notable events, such as the 1855 riot in Louisville.


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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Sduddy » Sun Aug 07, 2022 11:37 am

Hi Jimbo

Barbara Jean mentions the “Black” McNamaras, so named in order to distinguish them from the Red McNamaras. I (foolishly) googled “Black McNamaras Lexington Kentucky” and came upon this reference to the Red McNamaras (I think): "Focusing on the McNamara saloon building, a cold storage warehouse, and black tenements on the lot at the corner of West Main and South Spring Streets, the reformers accused the Klair machine of padding registration rolls with the names of floaters, repeaters, and “phantoms who had no existence"". This quote comes from a preview of Bossism and Reform in a Southern City: Lexington, Kentucky 1880-1940, by James Duane Bolin (page 49). Does it appear that the McNamaras owned some tenements and that the 1870 census record you found for Timothy Daly might be correct?

The book is about Billy Klair, a “Boss” in Lexington politics, who had been preceded by a “Boss” called Dennis Mulligan. According to, Dennis Mulligan was born in Co. Longford, Ireland, in 1818. I was interested to see that Mulligan’s wife was a McCoy: ... s-mulligan.
Klair’s familial connections proved politically advantageous. On 15 November, 1900, Klair married Mayme Slavin, the daughter of Patrick and Mary Slavin, who were Irish grocers in the city. Through his marriage, Klair, at the beginning of his political career, gained an entrée into a very influential segment of Lexington’s population, a segment on which Dennis Mulligan had depended. (Bossism and Reform in a Southern City: Lexington, Kentucky 1880-1940, by James Duane Bolin (page 37))

P.S. . “Old Houses of Lexington”, by C. Frank Dunn: includes the house of James Hill, which was at nos. 316-318 North Upper Street. The history of the house is given here and mentions a Matthew McNamara. There is an interesting note regarding the adjoining building, no. 314 , in connection with set of the film, “Gone with the Wind”: ... _james.htm:
Rust, of Boone County, Ky., sold to Robert Harper, of Butler County, Ohio, in July, 1854, and Harper and wife conveyed it in April, 1864, to Chas. S. Bodley, son of Gen. Thos. Bodley. Three months later Bodley and wife, Frances G., split the property and sold No. 314 to Matthew McNamara and Nos. 316-318 to Wm. Monaghan.
(The adjoining house, No. 314), is said to have furnished locale for a part of "Gone With the Wind," though a long way from Georgia.)

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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Jimbo » Thu Aug 11, 2022 7:51 am

Hi Sheila,

Gone With The Wind was mostly filmed at a Hollywood movie studio and other California locations. The suggestion that 314 North Upper Street in Lexington was used as a GWTW location has a very tiny footprint on the internet, only the one article you quoted, and is not credible. And not because it "was a long way from Georgia", but because it was a long way from Hollywood. ... e-Wind.php

A more interesting and believable GWTW myth is that Margaret Mitchell got the inspiration for the character of Belle Watling, the madam of an Atlanta brothel, from a famous Lexington madam named Belle Brezing. Her first "bawdy house" was at 194 North Upper Street in the Lexington red light district, and not too far from Mathew McNamara who purchased 314 North Upper Street in 1864.

Belle Watling of Atlanta and Belle Brezing of Lexington both had a child that was sent away to be raised by others. Sheila, below is the conversation (much abbreviated) between Melanie Wilkes and Belle Watling from Gone With The Wind when Belle talks emotionally about her son. An important clue perhaps in the true identity of the mysterious John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947)? Sheila, I'm assuming if you've never read the book you would have at least seen the movie, perhaps many times, so no further introduction is required:
"You were wonderful before the provost marshal today, Mrs. Watling! You and the other—your—the young ladies certainly saved our men's lives."

"Thank you kindly, Miz Wilkes. It was a pleasure to do it. I—I hope it ain't goin' to embarrass you none, me sayin' Mr. Wilkes come regular to my place. He never, you know—"

"Yes, I know. No, it doesn't embarrass me at all, I'm just so grateful to you."

"I'll bet the other ladies ain't grateful to me." said Belle with sudden venom. "And I'll bet they ain't grateful to Captain Butler neither. . . . I'll bet you'll be the only lady who even says thanks to me. . . . I wouldn't of minded if all their husbands got hung. But I did mind about Mr. Wilkes. You see I ain't forgot how nice you was to me durin' the war, about the money for the hospital. There ain't never been a lady in this town nice to me like you was and I don't forget a kindness. And I thought about you bein' left a widder with a little boy if Mr. Wilkes got hung and—he's a nice little boy, your boy is, Miz Wilkes. I got a boy myself and so I—"

"Oh, you have? Does he live—er—?

"Oh, no'm! He ain't here in Atlanta. He ain't never been here. He's off at school. I ain't seen him since he was little.
I—well, anyway, when Captain Butler wanted me to lie for those men I wanted to know who the men was and when I heard Mr. Wilkes was one I never hesitated. I said to my girls, I said 'I'll whale the livin' daylights out of you all if you don't make a special point of sayin' you was with Mr. Wilkes all evenin'."

"Oh!" said Melanie, still more embarrassed by Belle's offhand reference to her "girls." "Oh, that was—er—kind of you and—of them, too."

. . . "Well, I got to be goin'. I'm afraid somebody might recognize this carriage if I stayed here longer and that wouldn't do you no good. And, Miz Wilkes, if you ever see me on the street, you—you don't have to speak to me. I'll understand."

"I shall be proud to speak to you. Proud to be under obligation to you. I hope—I hope we meet again."

"No," said Belle. "That wouldn't be fittin'. Good night."

Gone With The Wind, Margaret Mitchell, 1936, chapter XLVI
scene from the film:

Was the mysterious John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947), rumored to be the son of a saloon girl, sent away from the red light district of Lexington to be raised on a farm in Eaton, Ohio? Or might there be a far more logical explanation?

Sheila, thank you very much for the further explanation of the timing of Griffith Valuation and the link to the wikipedia article. Given the lack of Irish census records, it states how it is helpful "know the precise dates when the individual county components of the survey were completed". Wouldn't it be more helpful to know when the fieldwork was completed? Below is a good example from County Cork which raises many questions about the timing between when the fieldwork and final survey were completed. This is Dennis McNamara, who, with 99% certainty, was the father of the "Black McNamara's" of Lexington, Kentucky:

Valuation Fieldbook, Mountshannon, Barrymore, Cork, dated 13 July 1846.jpg
Valuation Fieldbook, Mountshannon, Barrymore, Cork, dated 13 July 1846.jpg (100.34 KiB) Viewed 25 times

The fieldwork for the townland of Mountcatherine in the civil parish of Kilshanahan in County Cork was completed on 13 July 1846, as per above. It provides both the leaseholder and a brief description of the quality of the land. Unfortunately, the fieldbooks for County Clare, also available on ancestry, did not include the leaseholder's name for each plot (I only viewed a few pages for Clare). The information provided on 13 July 1846 for Dennis McNamara is nearly identical to the final Griffith Valuation except the valuation amount is slightly off. ... arishname=

The Griffith Valuation report for County Cork was completed on 20 July 1853 (per the wikipedia article) or 1851-1853 from the Irish genealogy toolkit. That is possibly up to seven years after the fieldwork was signed off for Mountcatherine townland on 12 July 1846. Can we be certain that Dennis McNamara, who was reported in the finalized Griffith Valuation, was still alive in 1853? Can we even be certain that the family of Dennis McNamara was still living in Ireland in 1853? Or had they already moved to Kentucky?

Sheila, I agree with your comment that the family of the "Black" McNamara's of Lexington should have been investigated more thoroughly. Barbara Jean's grandfather stated that she was the first girl born in five generations. I reckon this comment was a kindly grandfather letting his granddaughter (and daughter-in-law) know how special she was to him. To have knowledge of five generations would mean that John McNamara (≈1884 - 1947) had knowledge of his own grandparents and their siblings. Doubtful, I reckon. Plus, "Red Mack" had two daughters, so it would be inconsistent to not research Patrick H. McNamara of Lexington, who Barbara Jean identified as a "Black" McNamara, only because he was the father of two daughters.

Upon further research there were actually four "Black" McNamara brothers, who along with their mother left Watergrasshill Catholic parish in County Cork for Kentucky in the early 1850's.

To be continued.

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Re: Information is wanted of Thomas McNamara, of Glandree,

Post by Sduddy » Thu Aug 11, 2022 1:30 pm

Hi Jimbo

I’m afraid I haven’t read Gone with the Wind, but I have a vague memory of seeing the film and I know that it is a classic and the theme music is familiar and the line “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn,” of course. So I got the book from my local library this morning. There are 1001 pages of very small print, so God alone only knows when I will finish it. I know that the film is very controversial now, and I suppose the book is also controversial, but, keeping all that in mind, I expect I will learn a lot about those times and the civil war.

The note about no. 314 providing locale for Gone with the Wind can be dismissed, I agree, but it tells us that the house had kept its old-fashioned look, I think.

About Griffith’s Valuation and the difficulty with deciding when exactly the tenants listed were actually residing in the tenements, I have no very useful answer. As you say, in Co. Clare the field notes seem to be confined to types of soil, but I think there must be some parishes with information about the tenants living there at the beginning of the process (abt. 1846). I noticed that in his book, The Parish of Inchicronan (Crusheen), Thomas Coffey includes a chapter on Field Notes, and these notes give the names of the tenants present in the various townlands in the parish at that time. There were guidelines as to the information to be included in field notes, but ultimately it was at the discretion of the officers in the field how much they wrote. They were writing the notes in the evening after work, by candlelight, so it’s understandable if they did not include very much.
The Valuation Cancellation Books that I have looked at in the Valuation Office in Dublin show that the first revision of Griffith’s Valuation came very soon after the first valuation. Very often the first book showed me that the first (recorded) tenant had died, and that his son - I assumed it was a son if the name was the same – had taken over. Occasionally, someone of a different name had taken over, and this suggested to me that the preceding tenant had either died, or left, or gone to the Workhouse.
The Valuation of the Munster counties (apart from Clare) must have been a fairly straightforward process, since the problems besetting the system of valuation had been ironed out by then. Bringing the other counties, already evaluated under the old system, into line took some time and that process seems to have reached the north of Ireland as late as 1864. I read somewhere (but where?) that notes made during this re-evaluation show that tenants had been enlarging their farms* to include extra fields – presumably fields which had once been tenanted by people now dead or gone away, or in the Workhouse. In many cases, probably, the farmers taking those fields had already been paying head-rent for them for some years, so the landlord would not have been affected financially. There must also have been many small farms surrendered under the Gregory Clause by people seeking shelter in the Workhouse – these farms were now subsumed into other farms, or else consolidated by the landlord in order to attract the kind of better off tenant who could be relied on to pay the rent.
Anyway, a look at the Cancellation Books for the first revision of the valuation of the townlands of Carroward East and Carroward West might be interesting.
* I seem to remember that the examples given were from Co. Mayo.

I fully agree with you that John McNamara’s comment on the birth of Barbara Jean was just his way of expressing how welcome she was into the family.
Barbara Jean mentions a Patrick McNamara in connection with the Black McNamaras. Is he the Patrick McNamara who is occupying the house next to Timothy Daly in the 1870 census: #38 Timothy Daly: If so, I think he must be connected to Mathew McNamara at No. 37. As far as I can make out, his occupation is Grocer. But, really, I don’t know how we can find out who it was that John McNamara of Oliver Springs was visiting in Kentucky. Looking again at the notice in the paper, and noticing that John is given as just “John” and not “John L.”, I wonder if it was a John McNamara from Kentucky who was visiting John L. in Oliver Springs, and who was now returning again to Kentucky.


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