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McNabb-412 Claggan Research

Privacy Level: Open (White)
Date: 1600 [unknown]
Location: Lissan, Cookstown, County Tyrone, Irelandmap
Surnames/tags: crooks Bell TYRONE
Profile manager: Matt McNabb private message [send private message]
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Hi. This is an index for my research into families of or near Claggan Presbyterian Church, in the civil parish of Lissan, which is between the towns of Cookstown and Magherafelt in Northern Ireland.

Significant surnames in Ireland: Crooks, Bell, Mitchell, Glendinning, Glasgow, Shirlow, Smyth, Bradford,

Further surnames in New Zealand: Puttick, Darroch, Remus, Smith, Gillard

Other Claggan research spaces

Interesting WikiTree people/spaces

DNA matches

Names here have been abbreviated for privacy (as genealogists we try to avoid identifying living people without their consent). These are people who match my father.

  • GEDmatch: FB1966155. Also, MyHeritage, T.J. McNabb.

C1 88M-108M

  • surname Puttick - appears under Robert Crooks descendants.
  • Surname Otterson nee Glasgow - Not a descendant of Robert Crooks or James Bell, but is a descendant of David Glasgow (bef.1811-bef.1864) . Unfortunately David Glasgow's father is given as James and therefore cannot be a descendant of William Glendinning. So I am still drawing a complete blank on an MRCA between myself and Mrs Otterson.
  • Surnames Glasgow, Don, Spaven - unidentified place in tree & haven't responded to my inquiries.
  • Surname Crooks - descendant of David Crooks (abt.1831-1916)

In the cluster but not having that C1 segment

Notes on specific families


One family is covered in the Glendinning book. However thiere is another person in the 3rd Cookstown notes, Thomas Glendinning.

In Griffith's they are called Clendenning, and other variations exist too.

Brackagh - there are several places of that name but I would say this refers to the tiny townland adjacent to Claggan and Dunmore.

The 3rd Cookstown notes have Samuel McKinney & Martha "Clindinning" with children , in Maloon (a townland in the north-west of Cookstown urban area).


I have mainly been researching Bells of Dunmore and Claggan. However, in the 3rd Cookstown notes there is another few dozen Bells of Derrycrummy -- the next townland to the east of Claggan.

  • Derrycrummy
    • One of these is Thomas Bell (b 12 Jun 1825) who has the note "Mar. to Sarah Harkness, go to Claggan Pres."
    • We also have William Crooks b. 11 Aug 1861 who was illegitimate child of Jane Crooks b. 18 Jan 1840, dau of Thomas Crooks & Margaret Steele. (all Derrycrummy)
  • Drumgrass (borders Claggan, Lissan , Coolreaghs and Derrycrummy)
    • From 3rd CP. James Bell(1790) m. Margaret Bell (1806), Thomas(1813?), Alexander(1821), Jane(1826), John(1828), Rachel(1830), William(1832), Mary Ann(1834), James(Aug 1836), Margaret(8 Oct 1839), Robert (8 Apr 1842), James Crooks (Aug 1826)
    • Thomas Bell m. Maria Thomson, undated; children William James, John Millar, Hannah Matilda Greason.
  • Ballynagilly
    • Lots of Bells here. Thomas(1778), Robert(1770), Thomas (1806), William(1805).


  • Drumgrass (3rd CP notes)
    • Robert Crooks (1799) m. Mary Dennison; children Esther (20-Aug-1830), Richard (14 Jun 1833), Samuel (29 Jun 1836), Mary Ann (29 Dec 1839), Matilda (1842)

There are more Bells and Crooks in Ballymenagh (3rd CP notes - spelt Ballymenach there), and in Dunman. These two townlands are adjacent, just to the north-east of Cookstown.

Geographical notes

Lissan Parish is based around Lissan House, an estate held by the Staples family. (Author Clive Staples Lewis is of this family). The situation in Ireland in the 19th century was that the land was all owned by wealthy British people (whose forebears had confiscated the land in past centuries) and now leased it back to the destitute Irish peasants who faced ever-increasing rents.

In Griffith's Valuation we see Staples as the leaseholder, and the tenant farmers lease hald from him. Another leaseholder (who actually held Dunmore) was Miss Mary Elizabeth Stuart Trench (or French) whom I haven't been able to find anything else about.

Spelling of Claggan

The canonical spellings according to townlands.ie is:

  • Clagan, Lissan. This is where the Presbyterian church is, and borders Dunmore, several miles up the road from Cookstown. It is in County Londonderry -- the border of Clagan and Dunmore is also the border between the two counties.
  • Claggan, Derryloran. This is on the northern outskirts of Cookstown urban area, and is in County Tyrone.

Of course , both come from the same Irish name (Claigean - meaning "skull"). However, nearly all mentions of either place , in primary sources and contemporary usage, use the spelling "Claggan". On Wikitree I have not tried to use the canonical spelling (so far, anyway), but distinguish by always including the parish, i.e. Claggan, Lissan vs. Claggan, Derryloran.

Poor Law Unions (aka. SR civil registration districts)

  • Magherafelt, County Londonderry.
  • Cookstown, County Tyrone.

So far, I have found that the Union boundary seems to match the county boundary -- I can't recall any birth or death records kept at Magherafelt for a person of County Tyrone for example.

Civil parishes

Consult https://www.johngrenham.com/browse/county_civil.php?county=Derry and https://www.johngrenham.com/browse/county_civil.php?county=Tyrone.

  • Lissan. This parish spans the two counties. Sometimes, the Tyrone portion is called "Lissan Lower" and the Londonderry portion called "Lissan Upper". The main church is Claggan Presbyterian which I believe is in the Derry portion by a few yards!
  • Derryloran. This parish also spans the two counties, but is mostly in Tyrone. It includes the whole town of Cookstown. A small part to the north and east is in Londonderry.
  • Kildress, Co.Tyrone. To the south of Lissan. The main church here is Oritor Presbyterian.
  • Desertcreat, Co.Tyrone. This is south of Derryloran.
  • Desertlyn, Co. Londonderry. north-east of Lissan.
  • Desertmartin, Co. Londonderry. North of Desertlyn and west of Magherafelt.
  • Ballynascreen, Co. Londonderry. North-west of Lissan.

Towns/townlands that have come up regularly in my research

  • Cookstown (Derryloran, Co. Tyrone) - a major town
  • Killycurragh, Derryloran, Co.Tyrone - about 5km north-west of Cookstown.
  • Ballynasollus, do. - west of Killycurragh.
  • Muntober, Kildress, Co. Tyrone - south-west of Killycurragh.
  • Ballynagilly, Lissan, Co.Tyrone - north of Killycurragh
  • Claggan. (Lissan, Co. Londonderry) - east of Ballynagilly, north of Cookstown.
  • Dunmore (Lissan, Co. Tyrone) - north-north-west of Cookstown. Bordered by Ballybriest(N), Ballynagilly(S), Brackagh(E), Claggan(E), Mobuy/Mabuoy(E).
  • Ballybriest (Lissan, Co. Londonderry), north of Dunmore, a large townland.
  • Brackagh (Lissan, Co. Londonderry), north of Ballybriest. Maybe the home of the Glendinnings.
  • Brackagh (Lissan, Co.Tyrone). A very small townland (19.7 hectares), it's sandwiched by Claggan, Dunmore and Mabuoy.
  • Creeve (Lissan, Co.Tyrone). South of Ballynagilly.
  • Creevagh (Lissan, Co.Tyrone). East of Creeve.
  • Cluntyganny (Lissan, Co.Tyrone) . East of Creevagh.
  • Unagh (Lissan, Co.Tyrone), East of Cluntyganny.
  • Coolreaghs (Lissan, Co.Tyrone). East of Unagh, due north of Cookstown.
  • Lissan (Lissan, Co.Tyrone) - the site of Lissan House, this is south of Coolreaghs.
  • Gortagilly (Desertlyn)
  • Moneymore (Desertlyn)
  • Brackagh Slieve Gallion (Desertmartin).


Sources I have used

Sources I know about but don't have access to

  • Irish News Archive.
  • Claggan Presbyterian Parish Register. A copy of this is on microfilm at PRONI but can only be viewed at the Belfast offices -- they have no remote viewing. Inquiry with the church directly led to a statement that they would look up individual ancestors, but not allow bulk photography and transcription.

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