Question of the Week: Do you have Irish ancestors?

+28 votes

St. Patrick's Day is March 17. Do you have any Irish ancestors?

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in The Tree House by Sarah Rojas G2G6 Mach 9 (95k points)
Did your Gallaghers come over to Nova Scotia in the early 1800s?  I have a 3rd great grandmother, Ellen Gallagher born in 1824 in Co. Donegal who lived in Chamcook, N.S.
37% of my heritage is Ireland/Scotland per my DNA test results. Wish I knew precisely who.
My gt-grandmother was a Crossgrove descendant. They crossed from Ireland to Scotland and then to New Zealand. I also have Irish from Campbells, McGildonie & Downie antecedents
Yes I was born in Ireland and have numerous relations
Hi Edwin Power, My husband David Jackson's g/g/father Edward Jackson married a Mary Power in the Curragh,Ballysax-Kildare,18.8.1857(Army barracks).He was born in Little Gonerby, Grantham,England,enrolled as a private in Cork as a private with the 16th Lancers ,but later in his career became the Inductor of a military prison in India, died in 1903 in West Ham England. Don't know what became of Mary Power.Pity she doesn't have a middle name to help identify her , but even then she would be difficult to trace. Just thought I'd contact you as I haven't come across your surname on social media before.Margaret Jackson ,Western Australia
I have Irish ancestors on my Mother's side ..Powers, Howard and McLaughlin. I have only been able to trace them in the US in Ohio around 1850. Figuring they came over shortly before that as the census records indicate that they were born in Ireland. I too have hit a brick wall in tracing them to Ireland.Has anyone had luck in finding ship information for their ancestors traveling from Ireland to the US?
Hi Margaret, apart from this site I'm not on social media, I don't do Facebook or any of the other sites although my children are.I do however have distant relations in Australia or I think I do as two of them were transported for stealing sheep, I think they were in Sale.
I most definitely have Irish ancestors. My DNA tests show more than 65% Irish and Irish/Scottish DNA at much more than that

Irish family names are Noonan, Hickey, Murphy, Corcoran, Barrett, Moran and more...

I have a lot of relatives traces back to County Mayo and Tipperary but hard to find information beyond late 1700’s there. My 3-4 great grandparents came over to Ontario, Canada and New York/Virginia/Massachusetts , USA
I have Irish DNA. The most common group that I know of right now is Sheridan.
Yes, I do from family names such as Lynch and Rafferty

62 Answers

+16 votes
Best answer

This is a photo of me in Galway, Ireland at the store where I purchased a Claddagh ring in memory of my great great grandmother Jane Walker McCullough, who as a teenager  left Galway with her sister during the potato famine. She and her sister lived in New Orleans, and she died there in 1869 of yellow fever. These rings have been made in Galway for over 300 years, and they are meant to represent friendship, love and loyalty. The lighted sign behind me is of notables with Irish ancestors that have these rings.


by Alexis Nelson G2G6 Pilot (166k points)
selected ago by Susan Laursen
what an interesting story about your great great grandmother - but how did you learn about it?  I went to Galway and did some research, but all I got was that the spelling of my grandad's name of 'Dorsey' is from that area, apparently there are many versions of it!

Is there a reference source for ships that left around that time?
Benny—There was a McCullough family reunion in 2002. I was not there, but this information came from it. A women contacted me last year, and she told me that she was trying to find information in Galway, but she wasn’t having any luck. I wish I had some information about Jane’s sister, maybe someone in that family knows more. I haven’t seen ship records.

Benny this is one link, Hope you can find something

Great story and gorgeous photo of you

Thank you for sharing
+15 votes
Kiss me I'm Irish!!!!!

So said my DNA test and my last name. But I can't get my tree back to Ireland. Maybe someday I'll break my brick wall and get back to Ireland
by Richard Devlin G2G6 Pilot (153k points)
I am in the same boat (or maybe our ancestors were in the same boat), my Irish ancestors seem to have sprung from the earth on the north american continent early 1800s.
I feel the same way. I can only find information from US census records that my Ireland born ancestors were in Ohio in 1850 but I can not find anything earlier than that.
+16 votes
If I had been asked this question before I started researching my family, my answer would have been, "probably not". When I started looking into my family tree I found, almost immediately, that I have a multitude of Irish ancestors. Almost all of the branches in my tree have connections or roots in Ireland.
by David Carlson G2G5 (5.5k points)
If I had been asked this question 2 years ago, I'd most likely have responded with "probably not" —but late 2018 all the signposts were there pointing the way, and early last year I finally confirmed that my 3-greats grandfather was born in County Donegal.  I only wish my Mum had been still alive so I could say "see, I told you we might be part Irish".
+15 votes
Once I found my dad’s birth family, I learned his family came from Northern Ireland. I’m at least 25% Irish.
by Alex Stronach G2G6 Pilot (240k points)
+14 votes
We do have Irish ancestors on my dad's side. I just wrote about them in 52 Ancestors. They are Edward and Eliza (Burns) Flood. They came to the US from Ireland in 1850, likely to escape the potato famine. Sadly, I do not know the county in Ireland, if it was Northern Ireland or the Republic, or any other information. On the 1850 NY Census, they are listed as born in Ireland and they had their first child, who was born in NY. Our haplogroup is RM-269 and I have paid much to have Y700 for my brothers DNA (R1b).
by Carol Baldwin G2G6 Pilot (194k points)
+12 votes

Undoubtedly. Now Irish roots that I know about? My grandmother Jackson's paternal line came from Tyrone. Moving back one generation and discovering the townland where they lived was the first brick wall that I truly broke down myself. But in the process I learned about Ulster Scots, and all of my ancestors in that part of the tree seem to be Scottish or perhaps English transplants.

However, my mother's paternal Duncan line goes to near Aberdeen on the east coast of Scotland, and a few months ago I upgraded my uncle's Y-DNA test to the BigY-700. It turns out he he's in the Irish Sea haplogroup, so it looks like my Scotland-Ireland migration might go both directions.

by Barry Smith G2G6 Mach 9 (94.9k points)
+9 votes

only dutch and some german
by Eef van Hout G2G6 Mach 5 (53.7k points)
+9 votes

McGrath, O'Brien , Dorrell ..... C'est Bon Magnifique !! 

by Gerald Baraboo G2G6 Pilot (807k points)
+12 votes

My 3rd great-grandparents Edward Dillon and Honora Flaherty came to America via New Orleans in 1848 from County Kerry with their sons David (my great-great-grandfather) and Michael. Edward died shortly after arrival (possibly from cholera or yellow fever, there were epidemics of both that year), and his widow ended up in Louisville, Kentucky, where she appears with her children in the household of a Michael Flaherty (probably her brother) in the 1860 census. My great-great-grandfather David became a schoolteacher (he taught at St. Xavier in Louisville), and his brother Michael became a priest (he was assigned to the parish of St. Agnes, in Uniontown, where my great-great-grandfather met my great-great-grandmother Margaret Burch, who was a schoolteacher in Waverly in Union County before her marriage).

On my father's side, my 3rd great-grandfather John McKnee was born in Ireland sometime around 1830 and left Ireland for America sometime before 1850 (he was in Prince William County, Virginia, by then), where he met and married Matilda Harrison; I know absolutely nothing of his antecedents and have been unable to find him in any Irish records or any record of his arrival in the USA (but have numerous Irish DNA matches that indicate he was from County Galway).

by C Handy G2G6 Mach 7 (78.1k points)
+10 votes
Amazingly, I have actually found one of my ancestors who was Irish. Most of my ancestors have been here in America/Colonies since very early but I found the Dunn immigrant from my Dad's family. He was from what is now Northern Ireland and immigrated to South Carolina in 1756. Now, I can absolutely celebrate St.Patrick's Day!!
by Virginia Fields G2G6 Pilot (301k points)
+9 votes
Too many, and more found all the time.
by J. Crook G2G6 Pilot (185k points)
+7 votes
Imma mutt, so I've got a bit of everything mixed in there somewhere. Had to hunt a bit for proof of Irish, but it's in there. Just a smidgen.
by Scott Fulkerson G2G6 Pilot (779k points)
+8 votes

I have Irish ancestors up both sides of my family.  My maiden name, Athey, traces to George Athy, who immigrated to Maryland from Galway, Ireland in 1662.  His family was one of the Tribes of Galway.  My mom is 3/4 Irish; her ancestors trace to Clare, Monaghan, and Tyrone in Ireland and includes the surnames Clancy, McCarthy, McInaney, Shannon, and Quinlivan.  I am using autosomal DNA to try and get back more generations.

Bitmoji Image

by Darlene Athey-Hill G2G6 Pilot (330k points)
+8 votes
Have Irish ancesters on both sides of the family. Ancestery dna says 3% Irish dna.
by Jennifer Robins G2G6 Mach 3 (33.8k points)
+7 votes
I did the DNA test and it has me at 67.4 %. So I guess I am Irish.
by Shirley Mowrey G2G Crew (410 points)
+7 votes
My main purely Irish ancestor iwilliam Gorman (or O'Gorman), but I have many Scots Irish ancestors who were transplanted from Scotland to Ulster Province,Ireland, to work as tenant farmers.   Some of my Scots Irish relatives became notables.
by David Hughey G2G6 Pilot (763k points)
+8 votes
My father's side - 6 of his 8 great-grandparents immigrated from Ireland to Canada between about 1820 to 1856. The other 2 were immigrants from Scotland to Canada before 1850.
by Deanna McHugh G2G5 (5.1k points)
+6 votes

yes i have irish ancestors - my 2nd great grandparents were born and married there before coming to england.

Lackey and Jackson families of saintfield, down. slowly finding records but not many,
by Amy Lackey G2G6 (9.9k points)
+6 votes
Indeed! My Great Grandparents were Irish and came over to Canada in the 1830's. Gibbons and Mentons from County Mayo!
by Fran Reddy G2G Crew (780 points)
+7 votes
Yes, I have Irish roots! Sharkey and Murray from County Louth. They immigrated to New Orleans in 1842, settled in Livingston/Tangipahoa Parish, Louisiana. The Irish culture is still celebrated there today!
by Joyce Rivette G2G6 Mach 6 (67.4k points)

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