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My wife's mother was Nancy Kilroy, whose given name was Anne, who was born to Edward (Ned) and Matilda (Tillie) Kilroy in Newport, county Mayo, Ireland, on February 3, 1900. My wife Matilda (Teel), is named after her grandmother. Teel's mother Nancy's closest sister was also named Matilda (Tillie Kilroy McDonnell). Teel has several Kilroy relatives in Cleveland and Chicago. In looking into the McGough family history, I found other connections between Kilroys and McGoughs — including a marriage between Patrick Kilroy and Grace McGeough in Chicago—and stories in Connaught of the Black-and-Tan war involving Kilroys and Stephen and Michael McGough.
On this page is information on my wife's Kilroy ancestors and relatives. Her uncle, Michael Kilroy of Newport, Mayo, and her aunt Tillie's husband, Petie Joe McDonnell of Leenane, Galway, were prominent freedom fighters for the I.R.A. in the Irish War of Independence (Black-and Tan war) (1919–1921) and, as part of the anti-treaty forces, in the grievous Irish Civil War that followed (1922–1923). Because they are discussed in many books on the history of Ireland, I have given them special attention on this page. Dominic Price, in his excellent book The Flame and the Candle: War in Mayo 1919–1924 (Collins Press 2012), describes Michael Kilroy as "one of the most formidable opponents the British and RIC would ever face in the War of Independence in Mayo." (page 112).
On a separate page, I have collected similar information on the family of my wife's father, Patrick Whelton, of Clonakilty, county Cork, Ireland. See: Patrick Whelton and Anne (Nancy) Kilroy; Wheltons of County Cork and Galveston, Texas.
Ireland's Bureau of Military History (1913–1921) is an invaluable resource of witness statements, press cutting, and images, about the Black and Tan War and, to a much lesser extent, the Irish Civil War that followed. For example, document No. W.S. 1,162, is a witness statement of General Michael Kilroy, Newport, County Mayo, Brigadier General, West Mayo; Commandant General 4th Western Division Irish Republican Army., and document No. 1,612 is a witness statement of Captain Peter McDonnell, Newcastle, Galway, Officer in Charge of the West Connemara Brigade (and husband of Michael Kilroy's daughter Tillie). The statements of Seamus Connelly (W.S. 976) (page 7) and Patrick Kerrin (W.S. 977) (page 12) mention Patrick (Paddy) McGough, 1st Lieutenant and second in command, and later officer in charge, of the Inagh Company of the I. R. A. Paddy McGough participated in the Rineen Ambush of September 22. 1920 (word search for Pat Mc Gough). Here is a photograph of mid-Clare IRA activists circa 1921, including Patrick McGough, Inagh. He was probably related to the Patrick (Paddy) McGough who died at Kylea, Inagh, County Clare, at the age of 98 on January 16, 2014.
The Military Service Pensions Collection of the Irish Military Archives contains more than 40 file series, relating to individual applications for pensions or awards, to membership of various organisations - mainly the Irish Republican Army, Cumann na mBan and Fianna Éireann. A search of the Pensions and Awards File for county Mayo turns up the pension file of Michael Kilroy of Newport (MSP34REF839) and for county Galway turns up the pension file of Peter J. McDonnell of Derrylahan, Newcastle (MSP34REF3420). Both files proved to be very informative.
The list of Genealogy Websites published by The National Archives of Ireland is worth examining.
Census of Ireland 1901/1911 and Census fragments and substitutes, 1821-51, published by The National Archives of Ireland, is searchable and easy to work with.
Roger McDonnell has published a word-searchable data base that includes the entire 1901 census of counties Mayo and Galway. See: The Leitrim-Roscommon 1901 Census Search Page. The search engine allows a search for either a head of household or others enumerated in the household. (Although Mayo is not in the title, the complete census is there.)
Three books that have proved invaluable have been published since I published the original version of this webpage in 1999:
- The Flame and the Candle: War in Mayo 1919–1924 by Dominic Price (Collins Press 2012)
- The Men Will Talk To Me — Mayo Interviews by Ernie O’Malley (Mercier Press 2014).
- The Men Will Talk To Me — Galway Interviews by Ernie O’Malley (Mercier Press 2013).
A good analysis of the military aspects of the Irish Civil War is: The Irish Civil War, 1922–1923: A Military Study of the Conventional Phase, 28 June –11 August, 1922, by Paul V. Walsh. See also: Timeline of the Irish Civil War: Wikis.
Clew Bay to Cleveland by Bernie McCafferty is a superior website that includes townland maps of Western Mayo and Clew Bay, transcriptions of gravestones at Burrishoole Abbey, and a nice collection of photgraphs from western Mayo.
The Mayo County Library MapBrowser is a good resource.
For a detailed map of county Mayo, go to County Map of Mayo. A similar map is on Pat Deese's website, along with several links to Mayo research sources. Both the civil parishes and the Roman Catholic parishes are available on the County Mayo Beginnings website. Here is a good map of the civil parishes. Irishroots has published a map of county Mayo that will bring up information about the town of Newport if you click on it. Here is a map of the civil parishes of county Mayo which is available on ConnorsGenealogy. Wikipedia contains a map of the baronies of county Mayo, as does County Mayo Beginnings.
See also County Mayo Maps & Facts, which is part of the IrelandGenWeb Project.
When the Black and Tans arrived in county Mayo in the early 1920s, they made life difficult for the native Irish. Among the troubles reported in The War of Independence and Civil War in Newport, by Willie Sammon, was this:
"The arrival of the Black and Tans made life very difficult for the people and a Black and Tan District Inspector named Fudge*, stationed in Newport, went around with a group of Tans and terrorised the countryside. He usually operated at night and scarcely a village escaped his raids. Many houses in Glenhest were wrecked by his gang and in Cuilmore, Owen Keane, Tom Lyons and Stephen McGough were very badly beaten and had their homes wrecked. An ambush was prepared at Kilbride to kill him one night, but it failed. During the early summer 1921 many ambush positions were held but the enemy never obliged." (A larger part of this article is set out below.)*RIC District Inspector Thomas Hugh Hare Fuge, who was born on December 9, 1896 in County Cork, Ireland (registration District: Youghal). See: The Men Will Talk to Me — Mayo Interviews by Ernie O'Malley, interview with Michael Kilroy, page 30, footnote 21. The 1901 census of Ballyeelinan (Glenwilliam, Waterford), Ireland, shows T.H.H. Fuge, age 4, the third son of Richard P. (age 36, occupation: landowner) and Mary S. (age 35) Fuge, Presbyterians.
"The second RIC officer to become notorious was DI (District Inspector) Fuge, a Presbyterian from Wateford, who was stationed at Newport. He was a former lieutenant in the British Army. He led his men on some truly terrifying raids. Ned Lyons, O/C Newport IRA, was captured and tortured to such a degree that his health never recovered. He died a few years later. Lyons' capture was to bring about the promotion of one of the most formidable opponent the British and RIC would ever face in the War of Independence in Mayo, Michael Kilroy." The Flame and the Candle: War in Mayo 1919–1924, by Dominic Price (The collins Press 2012), pages 112–113).
Thomas H Fuge, age 25, a farmer, and his wife, Doris M. Fuge, age 21, both of 7 Palmerston Park, Dublin, sailed from Liverpool to Boston, on June 22, 1922, aboard the Lacona, a Cunard Line ship. Their destination was Boston, and they listed USA as their country of intended future permanent residence. They arrived in Boston on July 2, 1922.
Thomas Hugh Hare Fuge and his wife, Doris, came to Key West, Florida, USA, on September 8, 1925, on the SS Cuba, from Havana, Cuba, with a destination of Palm Beach, Florida. He married Gertrude Bradshaw on June 20, 1931, in Chicago, Illinois. California, Naturalization Records, 1887-1991. The 1940 census of the United States lists Thomas H. Fuge, age 43, born in the Irish Free State, living at 1221 41st Avenue East near Madison Park Beach in Seattle, Washington, about 5 miles east by southeast of my home from 1931 to 1954, and where I often would go swimming in the summer. (I was born in 1931.) His occupation was listed as a broker of shingles. In 1935, he had lived in Portland, Oregon. Thomas Hugh Hare Fuge was naturalized as a United States citizen in West Los Angeles on April 14, 1961. He died at Saint Augustine, Florida, on January 25, 1976.
The ambush positions were under the command of General Michael Kilroy, my wife's uncle. Cuilmore is a townland about 1.8 miles (3km) southeast of Newport, on the southeastern border of Burrishoole parish, about a mile east of Carrickaneady. The Cuilmore in Burrishoole Parish can be found on a map on bernieworld net (map 31-5 on Ordnance Map of Western Mayo and Clew Bay and the Google map of Cuilmore, Burrishoole, Ireland.. See also the map of the townlands of Burrishoole parish (townland #122). (There is another Cuilmore at Swinford, which is about 20 kilometers east by northeast of Castlebar on the N5. It is also east by southeast of Foxford, and not far from the Knock airport. There is today a concentration of McGoughs in the Castlebar-Foxford area. The are four townlands named Cuilmore in County Mayo. See: List of Townlands of County Mayo. )
The Stephen McGough episode is part of the folklore of County Mayo. Here is a description of the event by General Michael Kilroy of Newport, County Mayo, in Statement by Witness, Document No. W.S. 1,162 in the files of the Bureau of Military History, 1913–21 (part II, pages 17–18):
The Tans carried on even more ridiculous with Stephen McGough the same night. They shaved one side of his head and one half of his moustache, then brought in his cow and put Stephen riding on her through the house, after which they galloped her out the door. Evidently they expected he would be smashed by the lintel and brushed off the cow's back. This did not happen, however, for Stephen, though unpretentious, was able to rise to the occasion, though, perhaps, to "duck down" would be more in keeping with what he did. In any event, he achieved what seemed impossible going through a low narrow door on a cow's back in full gallop and without a scratch, with Stephen hugging the cow's neck. He says 'he fairly laid in the spurs when he got out in the open'. The cow turned up a byroad to the farm. The Tans ran out after him and did their best to shoot him. 'When I got in the clear', he says, "all the devils in hell would not catch me and the poor frightened cow". When Stephen got out on his own hill, it was an easy matter for him to dodge his unwelcome visitors. Hours afterwards, when he saw them, by the light of their cars, leave the district, he returned to his house only to leave it again as quickly as the cow took him earlier in the night. Before the Tans left Stephen's house, they got a calf, rolled him up in the blanket and put him into the bed. On Stephen's return, he immediately saw the blankets jumping and naturally thought it was some of the Tans who waited behind the others in order to get him on his return; so he cleared out mighty fast.
Michael Kilroy's son-in-law, Captain Petie Joe McDonnell, describes the same incident, but his statement spells the victim's name as McGoff:
I started off on the night of 11th May from the Killary mountains, accompanied by Jack Feehan, brigade Q.M., who was my best man. We could use no transport and had to travel at night. We arrived in Moran's of Murvey, near Aughagower, in the early hours of the 12th, after having travelled close on 25 miles over mountain paths. We slept most of the day and, that evening, started off making a detour of Westport and arriving at Carnaclay where we were told that Michael Kilroy and some of his men were in the area. We contacted him and, naturally he was surprised to see us so far from our base, but he was more surprised and laughed heartily when told why we were there. He had, of course, known of the intended wedding, but did not know when it was to take place. (Petie Joe McDonnell was about to marry Tilly Kilroy, Michael's younger sister.)
He was arranging for patrols of his unit to go into Westport and Castlebar and shoot up any enemy patrols met with. We continued on, crossing the Westport-Castlebar road and on to the village of Cuilmore. When we arrived there we found the people very fearful and excited. Apparently about two hours before our arrival there was a police raid carried out by District Inspector Fudge and a number of his Terror Gang. We met a man named McGoff who had one side of his head and moustache shaved off without lather. A cow was then brought into the house and he put up on her with nothing on but his shirt, and, while they whipped the cow, making her run and jump around the kitchen, they threatened to shoot him if he fell or came off. Luckily for McGoff, the door was opened by one of the men outside and the cow charged for the opening with McGoff still aboard. He stuck on till he got around the house out of sight and hid in the cabbage garden till they cleared off. (Bureau of Military History, 1913–21, Statement by Witness. Document No. 1612. Witness: Capt. Peter McDonnell, Newcastle, Galway. Identity. 0/C West Connemara Brigade, August 1920, page 71.)
Here is the story as told by John Feehan, who married Margaret McDonnell, sister of Petie Joe McDonnell:
We continued on to Newport, and on our way we called at Mick McGoff's house and there, to our horror, found his aged father (80 years) sitting in the midst of his ruined house; everything was smashed and broken. I told him who we were and not to be afraid. I asked where his son, Michael, was. He happened to be at the back door and came in. He was a comical sight. Half his moustache was cut off, half of his hair was clipped bare, his shirt was torn in ribbons, and he had no trousers. Seemingly a gang of R.I.C. under Dist. Inspector Fudge and Sergeant Butler had raided the house just before we arrived. They brought a cow into the kitchen and put Michael sitting on her back, whipped her around the kitchen and out the front door. The cow made for an old boreen, with Michael still on her back and shots ringing out after him. He threw himself off over a fence and escaped from them without much to spare. (Bureau of Military History, 1913-1921. Witness: John Feehan, Leenane, Co. Galway; Divisional Quartermaster, 4th Western Division; Activities of West Connemara Brigade, and Brigade Flying Column, 1917-1921, pages 69-70.
[Aghadrinagh, Co. Mayo, Ireland, is shown by Google maps to be about 19.9 km (12 miles) by road to the east by southeast of Cuilmore, Burrishoole, County Mayo. There is a good possibility that the McGoughs in Cuilmore, where Inspector Fuge had inflicted havoc in 1921, are related to the McGoughs of Aghadrinagh, where the Earl of Lucan had inflicted another type of havoc in 1847. Go to The Famine in Mayo 1845 - 1850 for a list of McGoughs whose houses were levelled in 1847 in Aghadrinagh Townland, Ballyheane Parish, Property of Lord Lucan:
"The Exterminator - In 1847 Aughadrina near Castlebar was one of several townlands cleared by the Earl of Lucan who became known as ‘the exterminator’ for his ruthless policy of eviction. It would form part of a racecourse for the sporting entertainment of the Earl and his fellow gentry."
In 1841, the population of Aghadrinagh was 314 in 66 houses; in 1851 it was 9 in 2 houses. Here is an excerpt from a table at the bottom of the page on House Levelling in Mayo, Aughadrina Townland:
Names of householders No. in Family Where now residing If getting relief Widow John M'Gough 5 Clonfert 4 James M'Gough 6 Drimneen* Mark M'Gough 4 England 3 Pat M'Gough, sen. 6 Baynesforth (Aglish Parish, County Mayo) Pat M'Gough, jun.† 6 Mount Gordon (Knockaphunta Townland)
* Marriages in the Castlebar/Aglish Parish records:
"James SWIFT Castlebar Barracks (John SWIFT England) to Honor McGOUGH Drimneen (Michael McGOUGH) September 16, 1884."
John McGOUGH Drimneen of Michael McGOUGH to Mary FALLON Ringuane of Michael FALLON November 12, 1896.
†Patrick John McGough, Jr., was born about 1809 in County Mayo. He was the son of Patrick John McGough, Sr. (1790- ) and Mary Moran (1790- ). Patrick John McGough, Jr., married Anne Ronan(e), and was the father of Patrick Joseph McGough, Thomas McGough, Anne McGough, and James McGough. Patrick Joseph McGough was born in March, 1840, in Aughadrina (Aughadrinagh), Castlebar RC parish, county Mayo, Ireland, and died in New Orleans, Louisiana on July 27, 1914. Thomas McGough was born on December 4, 1843 in Aughadrina, married Bridget Tuohy on April 25, 1868, in Islandeady, Mayo, and died in Ireland in January, 1878. Anne McGough was born in Mount Gordon, Mayo, on September 19, 1848, in Mount Gordon, Mayo, married Robert Carney, and died on in June, 1928, in Ireland. James McGough was born on December 22, 1853, in Mount Gordon., and died before 1870. For later generations, go to Patrick McGough's Profile on Wiki Tree and the McGough/Clarke/Baxter/Gibson/Williams/McComb/Anderson family tree on ancestry.com (a superior website based on thorough research).
[For a collection of McGoughs in County Mayo, go to my page McGoughs in County Mayo and [IRL-MAYO] McGoff/McGough, Assorted Records on Roots Web. Roots Web lists surnames in some of the villages of a few of the parishes of County Mayo:
Ballintober Parish - Killavally West - Michael McGough
Ballintober Parish - Cullentragh - James McGough
Ballyhean Parish - Derrynagooley - Patrick McGough, John McGough, James McGough]
[See also: The Michael (McGough) McGoff and Hanora Dolan Family. Michael (McGough) McGoff was born in County Mayo (probably Aglish Parish) in 1817, married Honora Dolan in Castlebar on March 12, 1841, emigrated to North Onslow Township, Pontiac County, Quebec, Canada in about 1847, and was buried there on March 3, 1896. The first two of their six children were born in County Mayo.]
Michael Kilroy (September 14, 1884 - December 22, 1862) was the brother of my wife's mother, Anne (Annie or Nan) Kilroy of Newport, county Mayo, Ireland. He became a general in the Irish volunteers in the Irish revolution of 1920 through 1922. He was the officer in charge of the 4th Western Division of the old IRA He was elected to Dáil Éireann for the constituency of Mayo South in the general election of August 27, 1923 — while he was interned by the Irish Free State for continuing the fight for an Irish Republic fully independent of England in the Irish Civil War that followed the Anglo-Irish treaty of December 6, 1921, that ended the War for Indepndence. (See Lecarrow by Bryan McHugh.) Eamon de Valera attended his funeral in Newport.
For short biographies and references, see the article on Michael Kilroy on Wikipedia and Members of the Fourth Dáil - Michael Kilroy. A booklet on the life of Michael Kilroy was published in 2008, Michael Kilroy - A Life 1884–1962 and is available in Mayo County Libraries. For another short biography, go to General Michael Kilroy, Newport, Co. Mayo in the West of Ireland on discover Mayo. For a You Tube by his son, Peadar Kilroy, born in 1919, see: Peadar Kilroy on Michael Kilroy. The video was taken in 2012 at the Kilroy family home (and blacksmith shop/iron works/forge) in Newport in which Peadar was born. For another You Tube, see Peadar Kilroy Life and Times. (A link to a transcript of that interview will be found at the bottom of this page: Newport Carnegie 1962.) See also: The War of Independence and Civil War in Newport by Willie Sammon; 3 June 1921 – Carrowkennedy Ambush, Co Mayo: Michael Kilroy and the IRA’s West Mayo Flying Column ambushed a convoy of RIC and Black and Tans; and Civil War in Mayo: The Battle of Glenamoy, 1922 by Thomas Langan on Family History in North CountyMayo, Ireland. A photograph of Michael Kilroy and the West Mayo Brigade, Flying Column, I.R.A., 1920-21, will be found in the Irish Bureau of Military History Image Gallery.
Here are excerpts from The War of Independence and Civil War in Newport by Willie Sammon. This is only a small part of an article that is well worth reading.
"The Irish Volunteers founded in Dublin in 1913, soon spread to most parts of the country. They were welcomed in Newport, as the old Fenian tradition was very much alive, and the I.R.B. was still very active. Michael Kilroy is on record as saying that the 1916 leader, Sean McDermott, once told him 'that Newport-Tiernaur, Kilmeena, and a parish in Tipperary, were the best organised I.R.B. centres in Ireland in the early part of the century'. 1916 came and plans were in place for Connaught to play a big part, as the arms from the German arms ship the Aud were to be siphoned through Limerick to the West. The Aud was lost and the cancellation of manoeuvres caused Connaught to take no part, except Galway under Liam Mellowes. The reorganisation of the Volunteers started in 1917 and now their aim was to carry on the fight started in 1916. The companies were formed into Battle Battalions and Battalions into Brigades. Newport, Westport, Louisburgh and Castlebar formed the West Mayo Brigade. Michael Kilroy was appointed O.C. and Ned Lyons replaced Michael Kilroy as O.C. Newport. When he was arrested in October 1920, Josie Doherty replaced him.
"The arrival of the Black and Tans made life very difficult for the people and a Black and Tan District Inspector named Fudge, stationed in Newport, went around with a group of Tans and terrorised the countryside. He usually operated at night and scarcely a village escaped his raids. Many houses in Glenhest were wrecked by his gang and in Cuilmore, Owen Keane, Tom Lyons and Stephen McGough were very badly beaten and had their homes wrecked. An ambush was prepared at Kilbride to kill him one night, but it failed. . . .
"Kilroy, now a General and OC of the 4th Western Division, took over the Castlebar Barracks and made his headquarters there."
Civil War followed the end of the Black and Tans War:
"On the night of the 23rd of November 1922, General Michael Kilroy held a meeting of his divisional staff in Carrowbeg House. The meeting was to brief his officers on their strategy, for the expected advance of Free State troops. Michael Kilroy, Jack Feehan and J. J. Leonard were asleep when a messenger from Feehan's of Rossow awoke them to say that the Free State troops were advancing towards Newport. An IRA column, under Paul Reilly, was in position in Kilmeena, but the Free State troops had slipped through in the dark. General Kilroy, Feehan and Leonard immediately ran to take up a position at Kilbride, at the fence between Frank Chambers and Peter McManamon's. When the Free State soldiers reached Ryders in Kilbride they were stopped by heavy fire from the three riflemen. The soldiers took cover and opened fire with a heavy machine gun on the IRA position which soon proved untenable. Leaving Feehan and Leonard to keep the soldiers from advancing, Kilroy crossed the road and railway line into Dyras field. He advanced further into Ryders which brought him to within 300 yards of the soldiers. From this position, he exchanged fire for some time before he fell back under heavy fire. He retreated down towards the railway line, where again he exchanged shots with the soldiers. Here his luck ran out and he was wounded and captured. Four Free State soldiers were killed and a number were wounded. The dead soldiers were; Captain Joseph Ruddy, Captain Joe Walsh, Private Woods and Private McEllin. Joe Walsh had been a member of Kilroy's Flying Column in the Black and Tan War. Ryder's cart was commandeered to bring the dead to Westport. General Kilroy was also brought to Westport and on to Castlebar, before being transferred to Mountjoy Jail. ...
"Conditions for the prisoners were very bad, and after unrest in Mountjoy, Michael Kilroy as senior officer in the Jail, called a general hunger strike, which lasted for 41 days. Ernie O'Malley, one of the hunger strikers, gives a horrific account of the strike in his book 'The Singing Flame'. The prison chaplain refused to give Communion to the prisoners, and after a visit to her husband, Mrs Nan Kilroy, on her husband's instruction, went to Cardinal Logue and complained about the Church attitude to the prisoners and immediately the chaplain gave the men Communion, although some refused to receive. Michael Kilroy escaped from jail and in 1924 most of the prisoners were released and, as little work was available, many emigrated to America.
"Sources [among several others]: Interviews with General Michael Kilroy."
Glenhest is about ten kilometers northeast of Newport—immediately west of Beltra Lough. The village of Cloondaff is in Glenhest. A little more than halfway between Newport and Cloonduff, on R317 (in the area known as Skerdagh, Irish grid reference L928 976) there is a ten foot Celtic cross erected as a memorial to the West Mayo Brigade who fought there in the Black and Tans War, under the command of General Michael Kilroy, against British forces, on May 23, 1921. There is another memorial at Kilmeena on the Newport-Westport Road, a little over 3 miles south of Newport (Irish grid reference L978 876), which is almost a duplicate of the other, except the date of the fight was May 19, 1921. Here are photographs of the War of Independence Memorial at Kilmeena. I have an undated newspaper article that says there were two such memorials dedicated on the same day, one at Kilmeena and one at Skirdagh [Skerdagh] "below Newport." The text of the article indicates that the memorials were dedicated 50 years after the ambush at Kilmeena in May, 1921.
Here is the story of the two battles memorialized by these monuments from The War of Independence and Civil War in Newport by Willie Sammon:
"During the early summer 1921 many ambush positions were held but the enemy never obliged. On the evening of May 18th 1921, Michael Kilroy sent a patrol of eight men into Westport, to attack any enemy in sight. At the same time, he sent Josie Doherty, O.C. Newport Battalion, with Jim Moran, Michael Gallagher and Jim Brown, into Newport. The Newport Patrol took up a position on Carrabaun, overlooking the R.I.C. Barracks, and during the day Sergeant Butler was killed. When Michael Kilroy heard the news he immediately moved the entire column of 41 men to Clooneen Cross in Kilmeena. He anticipated enemy troops moving from Westport to Newport. The column was armed with 22 rifles, 16 shotguns and 3 with shortarms. They took up positions in the early dawn and waited. At 3 pm two lorries and a car were sighted. The first lorry sped through the ambush position and was fired on without much effect. The second lorry and car halted at the priest's house, from where they directed heavy rifle and machine-gun fire on the IRA position. The IRA changed their position, to the fence at a right angle to the road, from where they fired on the Black and Tans.
"The first lorry, which had gone towards Newport, pulled up at Rossduane School, and the soldiers made their way back up the railway line to O'Flynn's house, from where they had a clear view of the IRA lines against the fence. A machine gun at O'Flynn's was trained on the IRA column with devastating effect, and in a few minutes, several where killed and wounded. Seamus McEvilly, Paddy Jordan, John Collins, Tom O'Donnell and Pat Staunton where killed. The wounded included Paddy Connolly, Paddy Molloy, James Swift, Michael Hughes, John Chambers, John Cannon and T. Nolan. One Tan was killed and a number wounded.
"The Newport men who fought at Kilmeena were;
* Tom O'Donnell,
* Jack Connolly,
* Michael Brown,
* Paddy Molloy,
* Pat McLaughlin,
* Larry McGovern,
* Ned Murray
* Paddy O'Malley.
"While the battle was still on, Fr. Killeen, C. C. Mulranny and Fr. Walsh C.C. Kilmeena went on to the field and anointed the dead and wounded. Caught between two fires, Kilroy ordered a retreat, and carrying some of the wounded they reached Aughagowla village where Dr Madden and Nurse Lottie Joyce of Clogher tended the wounded. Later that night, the broken column made their way to Skirdagh village, where they were made welcome. Dr Madden took the wounded to McDonnells and Dyras of Upper Skirdagh and in McDonnells he amputated two toes of the wounded Swift.
"The early morning of May 23rd found the men asleep in the houses of Lower Skirdagh, while sentries kept watch. Kilroy, Jim Moran and Jack Connolly where at McDonnells of Upper Skirdagh. Dr Madden was with the wounded in Dyras when a rapid volley of rifle fire broke the morning stillness. The sentry had seen a party of Tans and police near the village after making their way down the back road.
"Kilroy immediately ordered Jim Moran and Dr Madden to remove the wounded to safety while he and Connolly made their way to the source of the firing, where most of the men were billeted. Before they got to the men, they were fired on by the Tans and police lining the fence. Caught in the open, with no cover, they replied to the fire and kept them at bay. The rest of the Column took cover but Jim Brown of Kilmeena was fatally wounded as he crossed the river.
"Kilroy and Connolly where in a tight spot, as one of the Tans caught Pat O'Malley's horse and galloped into Newport for help. Kilroy and Connolly prevented the enemy from advancing but their ammunition was almost gone, when Dr Madden, from a better position opened rapid fire and gave the two men time to retreat. The fight continued and, as reinforcements came, the IRA men pulled back into the safety of the hills.
"By now, 40 lorries of soldiers were at Skirdagh School, and others had gone to Shramore. Five hundred men advanced up the hill in extended formation, and at the same time, they raked the hills with rifle and machine gun fire. The IRA men watched from a safe distance until night fell and then they slipped through enemy lines and made their way to Glenisland and on to Aughagower.
"After the retreat from Skirdagh, the entire Column came together again at Aughagower. On June 2nd at Carrowkennedy, they attacked two lorries of RIC and tans, numbering 25. The fight lasted for several hours, until the entire enemy force surrendered, after 12 were killed and a number wounded. The IRA had no casualties and they collected 25 rifles, 25 revolvers, a Lewis machine-gun, 5000 rounds of ammunition and boxes of bombs.
"The truce came a few weeks later, the treaty was signed, and the Civil War was about to start."
Here is an excerpt from a county Mayo newspaper article announcing a plan to construct the monuments:
"His [Michael Kilroys's] old comrades still recall his heroism at Kilmeena when his column almost surrounded and hard pressed was saved by his daring and complete disregard for his own safety. His stubborn rear guard action checked the enemy advance until his men regrouped and made their way to safety.
"A few mornings later a huge British force aided by planes from Castlebar aerodrome, made a sudden dawn attack on the broken column at Skirdagh where it was nursing the Kilmeena wounded. Here again it was the courage and bravery of Michael Kilroy that held the British back. Almost alone and caught in open ground under heavy fire, he held up the advance until his comrades came to his aide and the column escaped to the hills. Later, the heaviest defeat suffered by the Black and Tans was at Carrakennedy, Westport, where they were engaged by Kilroy and his men and after a long fight they surrendered after a number had been killed. Although advised to kill the prisoners, Kilroy let them march to their barracks in Westport."
Here is an excerpt from a county Mayo newspaper article of about 1971 describing the dedication of the two monuments:
"Frank Aiken Unveils West Mayo Brigade Memorials
"'I look forward to the day the whole of Ireland will be free,' said Mr. Frank Aiken, a former Chief of Staff of the Old I.R.A., when he performed the ceremony of unveiling two memorial Celtic Crosses—one at Kilmeena and the other at Skirdagh, below [i.e. northeast of] Newport, where there were battles between British Forces of occupation and the men of the West Mayo Flying Column, led by the late General Michael Kilroy of Newport in 1921."
The article reports that Michael Kilroy's widow attended the ceremonies, as did his son "F.C.A. Captain Peadar Kilroy, ... leader of the West Mayo Brigade." The article also reports that Aiken said "he was glad to see the men of the Old I.R.A. looking so well after fifty years." The article points out that the inscriptions on the two crosses were the same, except the cross at Kilmeena commemorated fighting on May 19, 1921, and the cross at Skirdagh commemorated fighting on May 23, 1921.
Michael Kilroy died on December 23, 1962. The President of Ireland, Eamon DeValera, attended his funeral at St. Patrick's Church in Newport. Also in attendance were over 500 members of the "old I.R.A." Michael Kilroy's gravestone is in the Irish language only. Buried with him is his wife "Aine" (Annie Leonard) who died on July 19, 1976. They are buried at Burrishoole Abbey near Newport.
For more background, and another reference to Michael Kilroy, see The "Troubled Times" in Mayo by Eamonn Henry from the Mayo Gazette Newsletter (August 16, 2001—Twenty Eighth Edition).
They Put the Flag a-Flyin'—The Roscommon Volunteers 1916–1923 (Old IRA) by Kathleen Hegarty Thorne (1st Edition 2005); (2nd Edition, County Mayo Addendum, 2007, published by Generation Organization, P.O. Box 5414, Eugene, OR 97405) added, in its Mayo section at page 464, a photograph of the "Men of the West" Flying Column commanded by Michael Kilroy. (The first edition also mentions (at pages 98, 366, and 491) Richard McGough (McGoff) of the East Mayo Brigade (not Tuam) who commandeered a train near the town of Ballaghadereen in county Roscommon on May 17, 1921, and was captured and imprisoned as a result. See the section called Ballaghadreen Town on my page: McGoughs in County Mayo.)
Under the title West Mayo Brigade. Flying column., I.R.A., 1920–1921, a digitized version of the photograph was added to the Image Gallery of the Irish Bureau of Military History on July 30, 2012. The photograph is published on the website Na Fianna Eireann in Westport, Co. Mayo with the notation "Article by Eamon Murphy. Photograph courtesy of Irish Military Archives." See also: Óglaigh na hÉireann: Irish history blog. The photograph is also at page 164 of The Flame and the Candle: War in Mayo 1919–1924, by Dominic Price (Mercier Press 2012) and the photographic section of The Men Will Talk to Me: Mayo Interviews by Ernie O'Malley (Mercier Press 2014), between pages 161 and 162. As indicated by the two books, this photograph is subject to a copyright © by J. J. Leonard and may be reproduced only with the permission of Anthony Leonard, grandson of J. J. (Jack) Leonard. (see below)
Regarding the photograph, 'The Story Of Mayo' (Rosa Meehan, Mayo County Library, 2003) has this to say:
Three weeks after the Carrowkennedy ambush, the 31 members of Kilroy’s Flying Column of the West Mayo Brigade were photographed by J.J. Leonard in what is considered one of the finest photographs of an active service unit during the War of Independence. The image was captured at Derrymartin on the southern slopes of Mount Nephin at 11.45 pm on the evening of 21 June 1921 (the longest day of the year) with no light but the ‘light of Heaven’. The four men inset in the corners of the photograph are members of the Flying Column who were on duty at the time.
Dominic Price, in his book The Flame and the Candle: War in Mayo 1919–1924, pays the photograph a high compliment:
While billeted in Derrymartin village under the shadow of Nephin Mountain, Jack Leonard, Kilroy's brother-in-law, took the now famous photograph of the West Mayo Flying Column. It is unquestionably the best contemporary photograph of an IRA Column ever taken. It shows them brimming with confidence and armed to the teeth after their victory at Carrowkennedy. With the British on their tails tthey moved on continuously with local IRA companies providing scouts, and local women in cottages providing rashers, , eggs and brown bread washed down with tea. Sometimesthere was an odd drop of poitin — when Kilroy was not looking! (page 162)
There is a photograph of Jack Leonard at page 237 of the same book, with this caption:
Jack Leonard, Sinn Fein organizer and professional photographer, pictured training with a Lewis gun. (Photo by Jack Leonard.Reproduced with kind permision of Anthony Leonard. The J. J. Leonard Collection of Historic Photographs).
Here is an excerpt from BMH Witness Statement #1668 — Thomas Hevey, Brigade Adjutant, West Mayo Bde., I.R.A., page 53:
While in the vicinity of Nephin, Jack Leonard, brother-in-law of Michael Kilroy (Kilroy was married to Jack's sister) visited us with his camera. He took a photo' of the Column late one evening. The group included all the Carrowkennedy men except Joe Baker and Paddy Duffy who were on guard, and "Nigger" Ainsworth and Jack Keane who were absent for some other reason. Included also in the group are Jim Rush and Paddy (Butch) Lambert who were absent through illness on the day of the Carrowkennedy ambush.
Here is an excerpt from the BMH Witness Statement #1735 of P.J. (Paddy) Kelly. Castlebar Road, Westport, Co. Mayo, O/C., Louisburg Battalion, I.R.A, page 23:
The next move was to Gleenlaur in the Newport area and then through Derryloughan, 12th June was spent in Coolnabinna and the 13th in Derrymartin at the foot of the Nephin mountains, where the now famous photograph of the West Mayo Flying Column was taken, by Jack Leonard of Laherdan. This picture included all the men who took part in the Carrowkennedy Battle, eleven days earlier, with the exception of Paddy Duffy, Joe Baker and John Berry who were on sentry duty while it was being taken.
The photographer who took The Men of the West, J. J. (Jack) Leonard (1891–1960) of Bofeenaun was the brother of Nan (Annie) Leonard who married Michael Kilroy (and of Margaret Leonard who married Michael's bother, John Francis Kilroy). According to Google maps, Bofeenaun is 7 km south of Lahardaun (also known as Lahrdáne). Leonard's Pub in Lahardáne is a well-know traditional Irish pub established in 1897. See the YouTube: Americans irish dancing leonard's lahardane.
Here is an excerpt from Memories of the men of the west by James Laffey that was published in the Western People (Ballina) of Wednesday, January 24, 2007:
One of the most bloody ambushes of the entire 'Tan' era took place at Carakennedy, near Westport, in June 1921 and resulted in heavy casualties for the British. The reprisals were swift and brutal. Many of the towns businesses were ransacked by British forces with furniture and and other items being piled high in the streets and set alight.
Not surprisingly, the familes of the IRA men who were suspected of participating in the ambush paid the heaviest price of all. Comdt Joe Ring - a grand uncle of current Mayo Deputy Michael Ring - had to watch from a distance as his parents' home at Drumindoo was burned to the ground. Michael Kilroy - the leader of the West Mayo flying column - returned to his blacksmiths' forge in Newport to discover that it had been completely gutted by the Black and Tans. The Bofeenaun photographer, J. J. Leonard, who was a brother-in-law of Kilroy, took some extraordinary photographs of the rebel leader standing defiantly in his ruined forge. The photographs are still in the possession of the Leonard family and anyone who has ever seen them will certainly agree with the old adage that a picture paints a thousand words.
Anthony Leonard of Ballisodare, County Sligo, Ireland, is a grandson of Jack Leonard, the famous photographer. He continues the photographic business of his grandfather. Anthony holds the copyright to, and provides prints from, Jack's collection. His email address is <email@example.com>. Here is part of an email that he was kind enough to send me on September 22, 2015, correcting mistgakes I had made in an earlier version of this web page.:
The family home was at Gortskeddia, Crossmolina.
Jack’s father Michael passed away early in 1901 so he’s not included in the 1901 census, his mother Cate is shown as head of House and widow.
Jack had gone to England by this time, it was while in England that he learned his trade.
He returned to Ireland in 1906.
Anthony also said that he is working on a book of historic photos and family detail — I am looking forward to the book with great expectations.
The marriage of a Michael Leonard of Gortskedda (sic), Crossmolina, County Mayo, to Cate Geraghty, on February 23, 1873, was recorded in 1873. Ireland, Select Catholic Marriage Registers, 1775–1912 , on ancestry.com.
Here is the Leonard family entry in the 1901 census of Ireland:
Residents of a house 9 in Gortskeddia (Crossmolina North, Mayo)
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Religion Birthplace Occupation Literacy Irish Language Marital Status Leonard Catherine 40* Female Head of Family Roman Catholic Co Mayo Farmer Read only Irish and English Widow Leonard Patrick 22 Male Son Roman Catholic Co Mayo Farmers Son Read and write - Not Married Leonard Ellen 20 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Co Mayo Farmers Daughter Read and write - Not Married Leonard Michael 16 Male Son Roman Catholic Co Mayo Farmers Son Read and write - Not Married Leonard Anne 14 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Co Mayo Scholar Read and write - Not Married Leonard Honor 12 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Co Mayo Scholar Read and write - Not Married Leonard Sarah 9 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Co Mayo Scholar Read and write - Not Married Leonard Margaret 6 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Co Mayo Scholar Read and write - Not Married
* Catherine Leonard's age should be about 58 rather than 40.
The Anne Leonard, shown as age 14 in the 1901 census, married Michael Kilroy. Margaret Leonnard, age 6, married John Kilroy.
Here is the Leonard family entry in the 1911 census of Ireland:
Residents of a house 1 in Gortskeddia (Crossmolina North, Mayo)
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Religion Birthplace Occupation Literacy Irish Language Marital Status Years Married Children Born Children Living Leonard Catherine 68 Female Head of Family Roman Catholic Mayo Farmer Read and write Irish and English Widow 40 12 9 Leonard Patrick 33 Male Son Roman Catholic Mayo - Read and write - Single - - - Leonard Sarah 19 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Mayo - Read and write - Single - - - Hegharty Edward 12 Male Visitor Roman Catholic Mayo Scholar Read and write - Single - - -
On Anthony Leonard's Twitter page, he publishes this portion of a March, 1925, newspaper article:
Mr. J. J. Leonard, D C, Bofeenaun, Crossmolina, the well known photogapher, whose professional activities were interrupted by the results of his political energies of the last few years, has once more settled down to work. The expensive camera taken from him y the British authorities some years ago has not been returned, but he has purchaserd another up to date machine. Mr. Leonard enjoys the dstinction of being one of the few Irish photographic atists to have won a gold medal for his work at English exhibitions. We have no doubt his return to business will be welcomed by the many friends and patrons to whom his excellent workmanship was familiar in the days before the struggle.
Here are excerpts from The Storming of Ballina from the Wetern People of September 22, 1922:SOME INCIDENTS===============These are some of the incidents which attended the invasion of Ballina by the Irregulars on Tuesday week:
...ITEMS OF THE FIGHTING AROUND BALLINA (Get Right Date)· On Friday night Mr. Jack Leonard, Crossmolina, brother-in-law of Mr. Michael Kilroy, the Irregular leader, captured at Newport, was arrested at his home. Mr. Leonard is well known as a photographer all over Mayo. His letters in a controversy which arose between him and Captain Judge of the National Forces will be remembered by readers of the “Western People”.
General Michael Kilroy in Parliament
Michael Kilroy was elected to the Irish parliament with Sinn Fein in the general election of August 27, 1923. He refused to take the oath required of members elected in 1923, and did not serve until re-elected in 1927 as part of Eamon DeValera's newly-formed Fianna Fail.
"Despite contesting the 1923 general election, 'anti-Treaty' Sinn Féin representatives refused to attend the Dáil. They were unwilling to take an Oath of Allegiance to the Free State Constitution, and an Oath of Fidelity to the King of England:
"I do solemnly swear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of the Irish Free State as by law established, and that I will be faithful to His Majesty, King George V, his heirs and successor by law in virtue of the common citizenship of Ireland with Great Britain and her adherence to and membership of the group of nations forming the British Commonwealth of Nations"
History of the Dail Eireann.
Eamon de Valera refused to sign this Oath of Allegiance, which was required for admission to Dail Eireann, and pursued an abstentionist policy up to 1927. He founded Fianna Fail (the Republican Party) in 1926 and led Fianna Fail into the Dail after the general election of 1927.
If I read the postings by ElectionsIreland.org correctly, Michael Kilroy was elected to represent the people of south Mayo in the 4th Dail in 1923 (but refused to take the oath), the 5th Dail in June of 1927 (as a member of the Fianna Fail party), the 6th Dail in September of 1927, the 7th Dail in 1932, and the 8th Dail in 1933. He stood for election in 1937, 1944, and 1954, but was not elected. His obituary says he was a deputy until 1937.
General Michael Kilroy in Mountjoy Prison
General Kilroy fought the truce made by the IRA with the British in 1922. Post-Civil War hunger-strikes, by Wayne Sugg, from An Phoblacht/Republican News, Thursday, October 15, 1998, tells us:
"The Civil War in Ireland began in earnest on 28 June 1922 with the fledgling state's attack on the republican outpost in the Four Courts in Dublin. It ended with the cease fire and dump arms order on 23 May 1923 by the IRA's Chief of Staff Frank Aiken. Eleven months of civil war were at an end, but even so six months later the state continued to extract revenge on those who dared challenge their new found `authority', keeping over 12,000 men and women imprisoned, hounding others out of their country, forcing them out of employment and harassing republicans in any way, legal and illegal, they could.
"By October of 1923 tension was building among the imprisoned republicans because of the conditions in the jails and camps in which they were incarcerated and because they were still imprisoned with no release in sight. On 13 October they resolved to begin a hunger-strike to highlight their demands and alleviate their plight. The O/C of the republican POWs in Mountjoy Jail, Michael Kilroy, announced a hunger-strike of 300 POWs in the jail. The hunger-strike soon spread to the other jails and within a matter of days 7,033 republicans were on hunger-strike."
Here is a quote from The Forgotten Hunger Strikes:
"On 23 May 1923, the Irish Civil War officially ended, but the state continued to go after republicans, keeping 12,000 men and women in prison and persecuting and harassing countless others. By October of 1923 tension was at an all-time high in the prisons and camps because of conditions and with no release in sight. On 13 October 1923, Michael Kilroy, OC of the IRA pows in Mountjoy, announced a mass strike by 300 prisoners, and it soon spread to other jails, and within days 7,033 republicans were on hunger strike. The figures given by Sinn Féin at the time were Mountjoy Jail 462; Cork Jail 70; Kilkenny Jail 350; Dundalk Jail 200; Gormanstown Camp 711; Newbridge Camp 1,700; Tintown 1,2,3, Curragh Camp 3,390; Harepark Camp 100; and, 50 women in the North Dublin Union."
The report of the proceedings of the Irish Parliament, Dail Eireann, of March 2, 1923, tells the story of the capture and trial of General Michael Kilroy:
"SEOIRSE GHABHAIN UI DHUBHTHAIGH: To ask the Minister for Defence whether he is aware:
(1) That Michael Kilroy was taken prisoner near Newport on 24th November, 1922, and confined in Custume Barracks, Athlone, until about the 1st day of February, 1923, when he was removed to Mountjoy Prison, Dublin.
(2) That on the 8th February, 1923, the prisoner was handed a charge sheet, containing three charges alleged to have been incurred near Newport, on 24th November, 1922.
(3) That on the 9th February, 1923, the prisoner wrote to the Prison Governor, asking for facilities to prepare his defence, but that the first intimation received by the prisoner's solicitor of his desire to instruct him was given to the solicitor at 5 o'clock in the afternoon of 13th February, 1923, whereas the trial of the prisoner was fixed for and took place at 11 o'clock on 14th February, 1923.
(4) That accordingly no fair opportunity was given to the solicitor to prepare the prisoner's defence.
(5) That an application for an adjournment of the trial to enable the defence to be prepared was made on behalf of the prisoner to the Military Tribunal, and refused.
(6) That one of the preliminary objections, taken on behalf of the prisoner, to the proceedings was that the Court was convened by a person other than the Officer Commanding the area in which the offences were charged to have been committed, as required by the regulations as to the trial of civilians by Military Tribunals; that the objection was over-ruled on the ground that a special order had been made taking the case out of this regulation; that such order was not produced, and was not proved in any way; and that such an order, if made, would be ultra vires and void; and
(7) That all civil courts are open or capable of being held in Dublin; and whether, upon these facts, he will see the propriety of having the proceedings in question set aside and quashed.
"General MULCAHY: The answers to the first and second parts of the question are in the affirmative.
"With regard to the third and fourth parts of the question:The officer who delivered the charge sheet to the accused asked him upon doing so whether he wished to have a solicitor to defend him, and if so, to give the name of any solicitor so that facilities could be given such solicitor to interview the accused and prepare his defence. The accused replied that he did not wish to be defended and stated that he would not recognise the court. At the same time he mentioned the names of some military witnesses he desired to have summoned.
"The accused subsequently wrote two letters to the Governor of Mountjoy Gaol. In one of these he asked for a copy of the regulations under which he was to be tried. These were duly furnished him. In neither letter did the accused ask for an interview with any counsel or solicitor nor did he give the name of any counsel or solicitor whom he wished to defend him. It was not until the 13th February that the accused wrote a letter to Mr. Sean O h-Uadhaigh regarding his defence. This was immediately transmitted to Mr. h-Uadhaigh, as a result of which Mr. Conor Maguire, counsel for the accused, interviewed the accused at 10.20 a.m. upon the 14th February. The delay in communicating with his legal advisers was due to the hesitation of the accused in deciding whether he would be defended or not. It may be added that the trial of the accused was postponed from the 9th February to the 14th February, to endeavour to secure the attendance of military witnesses mentioned by the accused.
"With regard to the fifth part of the question: the application for an adjournment was made at the trial. Counsel for the accused, when asked for the grounds of his application, stated that he wished to have certain witnesses present to prove an alibi upon the first charge. The Legal Officer stated that he intended to direct an acquittal upon the first charge owing to lack of evidence to sustain it and an acquittal was directed. As no sufficient grounds for granting an adjournment were stated, and in view of the facts already stated, the application was refused. It may be added that the accused, though he might have done so, did not give evidence to deny any of the charges.
"With regard to the sixth part of the question: Upon the 12th February an Order was made by the Army Council providing that their previous Regulations as to Military Courts being convened by the General Officer Commanding the Command in which the offence was alleged to have been committed, should not apply to the trial of the accused, and expressly authorising the General Officer Commanding the Dublin Command to convene a Court for the trial of the accused. Counsel objected to this Order as being ultra vires because it was not laid upon the Table of An Dáil for four days as provided by the Army Emergency Powers Resolution of An Dáil. As this provision obviously applied only to Regulations the breach of which was triable as an offence by Military Court, the objection was over-ruled. The Order of the Army Council was not required to be proved as the Court held that they were satisfied as to their jurisdiction and would not require the presence of the Army Council as witnesses to prove their Order. The Court made a note of the objection so that it could be considered by the Army Council when the proceedings of the Court came before the Army Council for confirmation. It may be added that between the time the accused was arrested and the date of his trial the Commands were reorganised, the area and character of the old Western Command in which the offences charged against the accused were alleged to have been committed being entirely altered.
"With regard to the seventh part of the question, I would refer to the answer given to the previous question of the Deputy for County Dublin upon the same point."
General Michael Kilroy was incarcerated again in Mountjoy Prison after he had been elected to the Irish parliament. Here are excerpts from Irish Parliamentary Debates of December 27, 1926:
"LIAM MAG AONGHUSA asked the Minister for Justice whether Mr. Michael Kilroy, T.D., Mayo, and Dr. Madden, T.D., Mayo, are interned in Mountjoy Prison; if he will state the reasons why these Deputies were arrested, and why they are now detained; if he is aware that Mayo is, and has long been, in a peaceful state, and whether there is any ground for the allegation that these Deputies are refused permission to have books and newspapers sent in by friends, and that food supplies sent them by their friends are withheld.
"Mr. O'HIGGINS [Minister for Justice]: Mr. Michael Kilroy and Dr. Madden, of Mayo, are detained in Mountjoy Prison under the provisions of the Public Safety (Emergency Powers) Act, 1926. These gentlemen have been detained as a precautionary measure, because there was ground for supposing that they were prominent members of the illegal organisation which was responsible for the recent concerted attacks on police barracks. [The Minister for Justice and Vice-President of the Executive Council, Kevin O'Higgins, was assassinated in July 1927. Seanad Éireann - Volume 9 - 12 July, 1927, Assasination of the Vice-President]
"There are no grounds for the allegation that they have been refused permission to receive books and newspapers sent in by friends, or that food supplies sent them by their friends are withheld.
"Professor MAGENNIS: I note that the Minister in his reply refers to these gentlemen as Mr. Kilroy and Dr. Madden. Is he aware that they are T.D.'s? Does he not consider that to detain them on suspicion is, after all, a breach of privilege of this House?
"Mr. O'HIGGINS: I hope they have as much respect for this House as I have.
"Mr. JOHNSON: Can the Minister give any information about the position of those interned prisonerswhether they are allowed provisions and books from outside and time for exercise the usual privileges of internees who have not been tried?
 "Mr. O'HIGGINS: I dealt with that in reply to a question the other day. They are allowed books or papers that may be sent into them, and they are allowed to write any letters they wish, subject to the usual conditions.
"Mr. JOHNSON: Are they allowed parcels of food?
"Mr. O'HIGGINS: Yes, if food is sent in.
"Mr. JOHNSON: Can the Minister say whether they are kept in their cells or in an enclosed place and not allowed to exercisethat they are kept in their cells for twenty-one hours in the day?
"Mr. O'HIGGINS: That would probably vary. There are some nineteen prisoners detained at Mountjoy, some in Cork and some in Waterford, and it would vary in accordance with the exigencies of the prison staff, but generally the view would be to give as much exercise as is reasonably possible having regard to the number of staff engaged in each prison."
For an account of interments arising from the Civil War in Ireland that followed the Black and Tan War, see chapter 4, Interment in the Twenty-Six Counties 1922–1973, from Internment by John McGuffin (1973). Michael Kilroy is mentioned in connection with a hunger strike at of Mountjoy Prison. I
Biography of Michael Kilroy
Here is an essay by Brian Hoban that was published on the Internet under Newport History by Mayo on the Move:
"General Michael Kilroy
"Major General Michael Kilroy was Commandant of the 4th Western Battalion, Old IRA, and played a leading part in the War of Independence.
"He lived and died in a house on the Carrickaneady Road. Kilroy a blacksmith by trade* was deeply religious and very proper and had a great dislike for anybody who drank alcohol. On one occasion in mid winter while attending a Brigade Council meeting, the woman of the house arrived with a tray of glasses and a bottle of Poitín, to warm them up as it was snowing heavily outside. When offered the Poitín Kilroy replied: “Ma’am we don’t drink.”
"In September 1920 Michael Kilroy was appointed Vice O.C. Mayo Brigade IRA. The following November a meeting of the Brigade Council was held in Kelly’s of Brockagh 4 miles N.E. of Newport at which it was decided to set up active service units. Kilroy was appointed Brigade O.C. The Active Service Units were not successful, as most members were known to the R.I.C. so it was decided to engage in guerrilla warfare. The West Mayo Flying Column was set up with Kilroy as its leader.
"On the 18th May 1921 it was decided to attack a joint Black and Tan/ R.I.C convoy at Kilmeena. The column of 41 IRA men took up position close to Knocknabola Bridge at 3 a.m. By noon the British convoy had not arrived and Kilroy was thinking of moving away. They held out however and at around 3 p.m the convoy arrived. In the ensuing battle one R.I.C. man Beckett was wounded and later died. The British regrouped around the house of the parish priest, Fr. Conroy, and launched a counter attack. Four of the IRA forces were killed. They were Seamus Mc Evilly, Thomas O'Donnell, Patrick Staunton and Sean Collins. Paddy Jordan of the Castlebar battalion was injured and died later at Bricens Hospital in Dublin. In a follow up attack Volunteer Jim Browne was killed in action. The whole affair was a disaster. Kilroy’s greatest achievement was to get the column to safety without any further casualties.
"On the 2nd June 1921 Kilroy accompanied by Moane and Madden set out to choose a suitable place for an attack on the Westport/Leenane road. The column consisted of 33 men on this occasion. They took up position between Widow Sammon’s House and that of Widow Mc Grale in Carrowkennedy. Soon the Black and Tans arrived and a soldier took out a machine gun, but he was put down instantly. Another soldier who tried to take his place was also put down. The British then started to use grenades. One of their number was about to launch another grenade when he was shot and the grenade fell back into the lorry and exploded injuring several of the Tans and soon afterwards they surrendered. In all 13 of the British party were killed and 13 surrendered. A large quantity of arms and ammunition were also seized.
"This ambush had been a tremendous success for the IRA and it boosted their confidence immensely. The boys then went on the run throughout the region sheltering in safe houses. While near Laherdane in the vicinity of Nephin Mountain they were visited by Jack Leonard, a cousin of Michael Kilroy, who took the only photograph of the flying Column that exists up to the present day. The following October the 4th Western Division was set up as part of an organisational move and Kilroy was appointed its O.C.
The Civil War Years and Aftermath
"The Treaty was opposed by most of the IRA leaders in Mayo and not much is recorded of the civil war period in Mayo. The Catholic Church denounced many of the IRA men and many of the Anti Treaty side were interned by the Free State forces.
"In February 1922 the Infantry Barracks in Castlebar was taken over and turned into the H.Q. for the 4th Western Division. The barracks was evacuated on the 24th July on instructions from Kilroy and an attempt was made to burn it down. Only one wing was destroyed however.
"When Michael Kilroy joined the newly formed Fianna Fail Party it came as a bit of a shock to his colleagues. He was a member of Dail Eireann from 1927 to 1937. After the formation of the first Fianna Fail Government in 1932 he proposed De Valera as its President. He was also Chairman of Mayo County Council for many years until his retirement from public life in 1937. Following his retirement he was a member of the Hospitals Commission.
"He died in December 1962 at his home on Carrickaneady Road. A huge crowd, including over 500 IRA Veterans attended the funeral ceremonies. President De Valera, who was accompanied by his ADC, Col. Brennan, attended the Requiem mass in St. Patrick’s Church, Newport, celebrated by Cannon Killeen P.P. The Most Rev. M. Mc Keown, DD, Auxiliary Bishop of Perth, Australia, a native of Drummin, Westport also presided at the mass.
"On arrival the President was met by a guard of honour of IRA Veterans under Captain William O'Malley. He was greeted at the church door by Cannon Killeen and escorted to a seat in the sanctuary. Also present were Mr. Boland, Minister for Social Welfare; Mr. Aitken, Minister for External Affairs; Mr.O'Morain, Minister for Lands; Mr. Bartley, Minister for Defence and Mr. Brian Lenihan, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Lands. Heading the two mile funeral to Burrishoole Cemetery was the Westport Brass Band under Mr. P. Mc Conville. At the graveside Comdt. Edward Moane delivered an oration, and a firing party of the old I.R.A. men under Capt. P. Duffy fired three volleys over the grave. Lieut. C.Kelly, Westport F.C.A. sounded the Last Post. Cannon Killeen, assisted by Rev. R. Horan recited the last prayers. His colleagues donated the stained glass windows over the Sacred Heart and Lady’s Altar in St. Patrick’s Church, in his memory."
*Here is an excerpt from the Wednesday, December 29, 2010, edition of Western People (Ballina) entitled Life in Mayo in the early days of Ballina Golf Club:
"The Western People in those days contained nothing but advertisements on its front page, including classifieds for situations vacant and public notices for auctioneering firms. Among the companies advertising on January 21, 1911, were the Kilroy Bros in Newport, who were coachbuilders and coffin-makers. Michael Kilroy would later take a very active part in the War of Independence, commanding the IRA’s West Mayo flying column in various engagements in Westport, Newport, Louisburgh and Islandeady."
Here is part of an email I received from Kevin Corbett on October 31, 2006:
"I was born and raised in Newport, have lived in America since 1971.
"I well remember the funeral of Major-General Kilroy. It is in fact probably my earliest memory of a public event (I was after all only eight or nine years old). I can vaguely remember the man himself as a rather slight figure. My father was at the time the Chemist (pharmacist) in town and it occasionally fell to me to deliver medicine to 'the Major-General's house'. It might be of interest to know that he was always referred to by his full title...Major General Kilroy.
"His funeral was a huge affair. By far the largest gathering I'd ever seen. I, along with other youngsters watched it from what was called 'the Bray'...the hill leading up to the church. From there we could observe not only the cars as they passed us on the Bray but also the leading cars out on the Mulrany Road.
"And of course I knew his son and grandson. His son operated a welding workshop across the road from the house. He was also a sergeant in the FCA (later the LDF - Local Defense Force) and a noted rifle-shot with the Lee Enfield .303."
The following article was published on the Internet Archives of Western People of September 13, 2006 under the heading of "Newport/Mularanny—Big strides in Tidy Towns":
"GENERAL MICHAEL KILROY
The role played by Major General Michael Kilroy in the founding and development of the Fianna Fáil party was highlighted by Cllr Frank Chambers in a speech delivered at a function in Castlebar to mark the 80th anniversary of the party. Cllr Chambers who is the Fianna Fáil candidate for Castlebar and West Mayo in the coming general election welcomed the Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern, Ministers, T.Ds, Senators and Councillors, and in particular, Minister Eamon O’Cuiv and Minister Sile De Valera, grandson and granddaughter of the late Eamon De Valera, to the celebration. Cllr Chambers said: 'As tonight we celebrate the 80th anniversary of the founding of Fianna Fáil, I would like to pay tribute to Major General Michael Kilroy, a Newport man whose name is remembered in the local Cumann that bears his name.
'Major General Michael Kilroy was Commandant of the 4th Western Battalion, Old IRA. and played a leading part in the War of Independence. He lived with his wife and family on the Carrickaneady Road, Newport. A blacksmith by trade, Michael was a deeply religious and devout man.
'In September 1920 Michael was appointed Vice O.C. Mayo Brigade IRA. He set up and was leader of The West Mayo Flying Column.
“Michael led the ambush at Kilmeena in May 1921 where his greatest achievement was to get the column to safety with only four casualties. Like most of the IRA leaders in Mayo, Kilroy opposed the Treaty. In February 1922 the Infantry Barracks in Castlebar was taken over under his leader-ship and turned into the H.Q. for the 4th Western Division.
“Michael Kilroy joined the newly-formed Fianna Fail party, this decision was crucial to the peaceful formation of the new state. It was also important in assisting Eamon De Valera in founding Fiannna Fáil. Michael Kilroy was a member of Dail Eireann from 1927 to 1937.
'After the formation of the first Fianna Fail Government in 1932 he proposed De Valera as its President and was seconded by Oscar Traynor. He was also Chairman of Mayo County Council for many years until his retirement from public life in 1937. Following his retirement he was a member of the Hospitals Commission.”
Cllr Chambers stated: 'He died in December 1962 at his home on Carrickaneady Road. A huge crowd, including over 500 IRA Veterans attended the funeral ceremonies. President De Valera, attended the Requiem Mass in St. Patrick’s Church, Newport.
'His funeral was an outstanding tribute to his life attended by numerous Government Ministers of the day. Heading the two-mile funeral to Burrishole Cemetery was the Westport Brass Band under Mr. P. McConville.
'At the graveside Comdt. Edward Moane delivered an oration, and a firing party of the old I.R.A. men under Capt. P. Duffy fired three volleys over the grave. Lieut. C.Kelly, Westport F.C.A. sounded the Last Post. A magnificent stained glass window was erected by his colleagues at St Patrick’s Church, Newport in his memory.
'Tonight we are honouring Major Generaal Michael Kilroy and commend him on the great contribution he has made to Fianna Fail.
'We are also delighted to welcome his family, Peadar Kilroy, his son who has also given a life long commitment to Fianna Fail as past chairman and now president of the Michael Kilroy cumman. We would like to welcome his daughter Dr. Maeve Kilroy and daughter in law Mrs Anne Kilroy We would also like to welcome his numerous grandchildren, Anne Marie Kilroy McManamon, Paul Kilroy and members of the Reid family here tonight.
'This is the first occasion we have come together on a County basis since the convention on the 26th March. At that convention, you decisively selected me with an overall majority as the Castlebar, West Mayo Candidate.
“Thank you for all your support, however, we have a great challenge ahead of us. Mayo geographically is the largest and most competitive constituency in the country. We need to regain and return confidence in Fianna Fail to gain back the sears we lost.
“I am determined to win back this seat in the Castle-bar, West Mayo area. My campaign started the day of the convention following my years experience as a County Councillor, and my term in the Senate, I am the most experienced politician on the Fianna Fail team for Mayo, and I am determined that I will win back this seat.
'We must offer the people of Mayo leadership and pride that is necessary to rejuvenate Fianna Fail Politics and bring back the Fianna Fail seats to Mayo,' the councillor said.'"
Here are excerpts from articles from Wikipedia:
"The Carrowkennedy Ambush was an incident in Ireland's War of Independence. On 2 June 1921, Major General Michael Kilroy, later Commandant of the 4th Western Battalion of the IRA, led a flying column of 33 men. They took up position between Widow Sammon’s House and that of Widow McGreal in Carrowkennedy, near Westport in County Mayo. A group of Black and Tans arrived. 13 of the British side were killed and 13 surrendered. A large quantity of arms were seized. Many of the local people went into hiding to avoid the retribution of the Tans. The Irish fighters went on the run throughout the region sheltering in safe houses.
"This ambush had been a tremendous success for the local IRA and it boosted their confidence immensely."
"2 June 1921: Carrowkennedy ambush, county Mayo. Michael Kilroy and the IRA's West Mayo Flying Column ambush a convoy of RIC and Black and Tans. Six police are killed and six are wounded, two of them fatally. The surviving seventeen police surrender, and the IRA seize a large quantity of arms. Many of the local people go into hiding to avoid the retribution of the Tans. The Irish fighters went on the run throughout the region sheltering in safe houses."
"12 September 1922: Republicans under Michael Kilroy take Ballina, county Mayo, in a surprise attack while the National Army troops there are at a Mass service for a comrade killed in the fighting. Kilroy's men capture 100 rifles, 20,000 rounds of ammunition and are reported by Free State authorities to have looted £25,000 worth of goods from local shops. Kilroy later admits to drunkenness and indiscipline on behalf of his men. The Republicans leave the town when Free State reinforcements arrive. The Republican's armoured car breaks down in the retreat and has to be abandoned.
"14 September 1922: Republicans under Michael Kilroy ambush a Free State convoy near Belderg, county Mayo, taking 16 prisoners.
"16 September 1922: Michael Kilroy's Anti-Treaty IRA men attack Newport, county Mayo, but fail to take it and withdraw after a day of fighting.
"29 October 1922: Anti-Treaty IRA under Michael Kilroy attack and take Clifden, county Galway, capturing 80 Free State soldiers.
"23 November 1922: A National Army force surprises Michael Kilroy and the leader of the Mayo anti-treaty IRA at Carrowbeg house. In the ensuing fight, 4 Free State soldiers are killed but Kilroy and several of his officers are captured."
Kilmeena Ambush and the Day Before
Since I published the discussions of the Kilmeena Ambush included earlier in this article, two books have been published that add information. The Men Will Talk to Me: Mayo Interview by Ernie O'Malley (Mercier Press 2014). Here is a portion of the three interviews O'Malley had with Michael Kilroy from pages 42 through 45 of the book. I have omitted the voluminous and valuable footnotes.:
[101/43] Kilmeena [ambush, 19 May 1921]. We though we would cut every road but leave the Westport-Newport road open. We were down from the priest's house in Myra. We lay down at dawn, but it was bright before we lay down... Most of the men were near the Dance Hall and on a hill each side ofus. At 12 [p.m.] they came [101/44] along — lorries and two cars. I passed down, then took up a position around O'Flynn's. The military came out from Westport. There was a fight for two hours, and one of our lads, Seamus McEvill, was wounded almost at once. Staunton of Kilmeena was killed and Collins was killed.. We had three wounded, Paddy Mulloy of Tiernauer and Nolan ... We had about forty men, most of them armed with shotguns. The military used rifle grenades and two machine guns. John Madden was by himself along a bank and a rifle grenade dropped right where he was. Commandant Paddy Joran was wounded. We covered the boys retreat. I told him to come out as I thought he was hurt by briars. He died of wounds afterwards as did McEvilly. All the British got were the four wounded.
One of the men waited behind with two fellows, Nolan and O'Malley, and McEvilly. He was said to be a spy for the British for he was said to have come around with the Tans later: Pierce, an Artane boy who worked in Westport. He disappeared afterwards.
[136/44R] At Kilmeena there were whip-cracks from explosive bulletss. Paddy O'Malley, my cousin, had his leg broken in Kilmeena, and he was brought in a prisoner to Westport, where he could see the treatment iof the wounded who were slung out of the lorry.
[138/13L] PaddyO'Malley (who was wounded and then captured in Kilmeena) was a great shot, and he could make allowance for it. (The bad rifle which he had, I expect.) I was using his rifle at 200 yards [138/14R] distance from the back of O'Flyyn's and I got him, the man I was firing at. O'Flynn's house (the tailor's) would shield Madden from the machine gun which was close to O'Flynn's. We exanined it first (P.O'Malley's rifle) but it was not suitable. We had not many rifles in Kilmeena. At Fr. Confroy's house the Tans knelt on the road, and they were exposed to us. We got several rounds into them before they ran across to the other bank. Jim Kelly was then in Cummins hoouse, and he (or they) were cooking eight hens, and he was in his aunt's house helping, with a few more men (now he is dead). The first man who was hit was hit from O'Flynns, and he was then behind the second fance (behind the ambush position) and aboutnthen Paddy O'Malley was wounded and some of the RIC emptied refles into his flesh when he was captured. There was an order issued to occupy th second fence but Staunton and McEvilly were knocked down there.
Jordan rolled himself in under briars. I told him to come out, and then did come out, and he lay himself beside e quietly until I had to retreat. Jordasn and I were together, and we were moving, ..., when he discovered a gap lower down in a field which was between him and the road. I went down to Paddy O'Malley then. There was a Balla msn who was working in Kilroy's in Castlebar, Tommy Nolan. Pierce was there and Pierce said he would not leave. There was Tommy Nolan there and someone else, four or vie of them were there. There [138/14L] was not good cover in which to come away. I got to Browne the wo was a cool man and he was there with his old shotgun and at that distance he was too far way from the enemy to fire at any of them with result. Tom Nolan had his leg broken on him. I heard the RIC as they were coming along the road towards the wounded men. They shouted when they came up to our wounded but they did not kill them.
Michael Kilroy's West Mayo Flying Column received its baptism under fire at the Kilmeena Ambush of May 19, 1921. Kilroy planned to ambush the R.I.C. at Kilmeena on the Newport-Westport Road, about 11.4 km south of Newport and 8.0 km north of Westport. The second of the two new books mentioned above is The Flame and the Candle: War in Mayo 1919–1924 by Dominic Price (Collins Price 2012). Here is an excerpt:
"Kilroy's plan was to draw out the RIC from their barracks so he sent out three sections to stir up trouble in Castlebar, Westport and Newport the night before the planned ambush. The Castlebar section returned without incident. The section sent to Newpprt consisted of four men led by Captain Jim Moran. Moran decided to carry out a sniping attack on the RIC barracks. Just as the IRA were in position, RIC Sergeant Francis Butler was returning to barracks from his home nearby. The IRA had been aware that Butler was one of five particular RIC men who had carried out shocking treatment of civilians in the Newport District. He was shot and badly wounded from a distance of 300 yards. It is unlikely that the IRA knew who the Sergeant Butler was at that range. It was just coincidence. He died the following day. In response, the RIC attacked and burned down Michael Kilroy's home and his workshop. His brother, John, also had his home and business in the town of Newport destroyed. Kilroy's wife had to throw herself over her baby son Peadar as the bullets shot the plaster off the wall of the house prior to it being set on fire." (page 144)
"Michael Kilroy - the leader of the West Mayo flying column - returned to his blacksmiths' forge in Newport to discover that it had been completely gutted by the Black and Tans. The Bofeenaun photographer, J. J. Leonard, who was a brother-in-law of Kilroy, took some extraordinary photographs of the rebel leader standing defiantly in his ruined forge. The photographs are still in the possession of the Leonard family and anyone who has ever seen them will certainly agree with the old adage that a picture paints a thousand words." Memories of the men of the west by James Laffey, published in the Western People (Ballina) of Wednesday, January 24, 2007
Michael Kilroy reports that his sister-in-law Mrs. John Kilroy (Margaret Leonard Kilroy) said they were fired on by a Tan that evening at their home on Main Street, and that the shop goods of his brother John's were pitched out on the street by the Tans after Michael's house had been set on fire, but says: "The Tans were then going to set fire to John's house until somebody told the house was owned by a vert good friend of theirs." (I assume John Kilroy was a tenant.) Here is part of the BMH Witness Statement #1,162 — General Michael Kilroy, Newport, Co. Mayo, Brigadier General, West Mayo; Comd't. General, 4th western Division I.R.A. (pages 13–15):
"Those Newport men were only in position at 8 p.m. on Carrabaun Hill when the Newport Sergeant walked out into the barrack yard. The distance was, roughly, three hundred yards, straight south-east of the barracks to the post occupied by our men.
"There was only one shot fired, but the Sergeant fell, mortally wounded, and died some hours later.
"Immediately after the shot, a number of Tans and police ran out to the barrack wall, flanking the Newport-Castlebar road. They concentrated their fire on my house which is almost opposite and about three hundred yards away
"When my wife heard the first I.R.A. shot, she looked out the front window and across at the barrack. She saw the first man run from the barrack to the wall. When he fired - lucky for her - it was in the front door the bullet came, as otherwise she could have been shot at the window.
"She immediately lifted the baby out of the pram and lay down on the floor. She got the maid to do likewise with the older child. They were under concentrated fire until 10 p.m. When the firing ceased, they were almost smothered with the dust of mortar and plaster being torn off by the flying bullets.
"The maid then brought a mattress from upstairs, and the four of them slept on it till 12.30 a.m., being overcome by exhaustion resulting from the heavy atmosphere and two hours' terrible strain.
"They were awakened by a loud knocking on the inner door and a demand by Tans to open up and let them in.
"As the glass panels of the front door were, broken by gunfire, it was easy for the Tans to put in a hand and undo the lock which evidently was what they did.
"Those men were immediately followed by others who went upstairs and all over the rooms, breaking the windows, presumably to ventilate the fire which they got under way almost at once.
"The women did not know how many police were present, but there seemed to be a crowd everywhere they turned.
"Immediately on arrival, they ordered the women out with the children. My Missus would not be permitted to take even the pram for the baby with her. When she was going out the door, a Tan, with an English accent, followed her with a rug and said, 'Take this. We have babies ourselves'.
"When she went out, there was a line of police, eight to ten in number, firing up the hill. They were lined up against the road wall, shoulder to shoulder. She asked the nearest man of those what it was all about, but he did not answer.
"She then went over to her sister, Mrs. John Kilroy, Main Street; Newport. Both of them, with their seven children and maids, went out to my father and sisters, Maggie and Tillie, about a mile from town.
"Mrs. John Kilroy says that they were fired on by a Tan that evening when Annie Mulderrig, the maid, appeared at the door.
"The shop goods in brother John's were pitched out on the street by the Tans, after my house and the workshops were set on fire. The Tans were then going to set fire to John's house until somebody told them the house was owned by a very good friend of theirs.
"John Kilroy was arrested and imprisoned since 6th January, 1921. He was in Galway for a period and afterwards in the Rath Camp, Co. Kildare. He, therefore', was away when all this excitement took place."
The death of Francis J. Butler at age 39, born about 1882, was registered in Castlebar in the 2nd Quarter of 1921. Ireland, Civil Registration Deaths Index, 1864–1958 on ancestry.com (volume 4, page 73, FHL Film Number 0101608). Here is the entry in England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858–1966 on ancestry.com.:
Butler, Francis Joseph, of Newport, county Mayo, died 19 May 1921 at Castlebar, county Mayo. Administration: B, to Bridget Josephine Butler, widow. Effects £23 112s. in England. Sealed, London, 9 November. Probate date 9 Nov 1921.
Francis J. Butler, Constable, RIC, Co. Mayo, killed in 1921, is among the Names of officers whose details are contained in the Roll of Honour at the National Police Memorial for Ireland.
Military Service Pension File of Michael Kilroy
Michael Kilroy is on the list of 39 Applicants awarded Military Service Pensions at the highest Grade (Grade A) under the Military Service Pensions Act of 1934 (Appendix i, Guide to the Military Service (1916–1923 Pensions Collection, page 170). Also on the list are the famous warrior, writer and hisotiian Ernie O'Malley, and Diarmid Lynch, who is the subject of a good book: Diarmuid Lynch — A Forgotten Irish Patriot by Eileen McGough (Mercier Press 2013). Grade included the Chief of Staff, Deputy, Adjutant General, Quartermaster General and Divisional Officers Commanding (OC).
The online Military Service Pensions Collection of the Military Archives of Defense Forces Ireland (Óglaigh na hÉireann) is a great source of information. The website provides an online feature: Search the Collecction. Check the Guide to the Military Service (1916–1923 Pensions Collection (178 page pdf) for the origins, scope and content of the collection, the history of Irish military pensions, and much more on the history of Ireland in the 20th century.
The Military Service Pensions Collection (MSPC) is one of the last and largest pieces of the archival jigsaw relating to Ireland’s revolutionary period. Numbering almost 300,000 applications files and supporting documentation, the collection provides an unparalleled and detailed picture of Irish Volunteer, Irish Republican Army, National Army and anti-treaty forces’ activities throughout the period from the 1916 Rising to the end of the civil war in 1923. (page 10)
The Army Pensions Act of 1932 broadened the definition of active military service to include service on the anti-treaty side of the Irish Civil War:
Military service was then defined as follows:
• ‘pre-truce military service’ meant military service during any part of the period beginning on 1 April, 1916 and ending on 11 July, 1921;
• ‘post-truce military service’ meant military service during any part of the period beginning on 12 July, 1921 and ending on 30 September, 1923. (page 17)
The effect was to bring those persons who had pre-truce active service but who took no further part in activities, and those who carried out active service on the anti-treaty side in the civil war under the legislation. (page 17)
The Military Service Pension Act of 1934 allowed, for the first time, those who participated in the civil war on the anti-treaty side to apply for military service pensions. (page 23)
Applications were made to Pensions Branch, Department of Defence. Each applicant was assigned a file under the Series 34/SP/xxx and the application form (MSP 1) was passed to the Referee, who initiated a file for that applicant under the Series MSP/34/Ref/xxx. The Referee went on to take oral evidence under oath, which is typed up verbatim, and filed in each case. A pension was awarded where the case was proven.
The 34/SP/xxx file usually functioned as a payments file in the case of successful applicants. The detailed procedures followed in the adjudication of claims by the Referee and Advisory Committee, and the roles of ‘Brigade Committees’ are set out in a public notice issued by the Department of Defence in February, 1945 and reproduced online.
There are approximately 126,000 files relating to applicants in the 34 series (SP and Referee), which will be consolidated during processing and databasing. They cover the period from 1934 to ca. 1948. ...
Applications were made to Pensions Branch, Department of Defence. Each applicant was assigned a file under the Series 34/SP/xxx and the application form (MSP 1) was passed to the Referee, who initiated a file for that applicant under the Series MSP/34/Ref/xxx. The Referee went on to take oral evidence under oath, which is typed up verbatim, and filed in each case. A pension was awarded where the case was proven. The 34/SP/xxx file usually functioned as a payments file in the case of successful applicants. The detailed procedures followed in the adjudication of claims by the Referee and Advisory Committee, and the roles of ‘Brigade Committees’ are set out in a public notice issued by the Department of Defence in February, 1945 and reproduced online. There are approximately 126,000 files relating to applicants in the 34 series (SP and Referee), which will be consolidated during processing and databasing. They cover the period from 1934 to ca. 1948.
Form MSP/34/1 is frequently added to with typed or handwritten pages, expanding on the limited space available in the printed version. Sometimes original material such as notebooks, lists of Company members, original documents relating to internment or arrest orders and newspaper cuttings are enclosed. Some individual files also contain copies of sworn evidence in typed format, taken by the Referee in other cases. In some cases the Referee will question a claimant at length, where it appears the evidence given is useful in the broader sense of understanding particular incidents, chains of command and appointments held at critical times etc. (c.f. Ernest B O’Malley, 34/A6 and RO/601 released online). (page 24)
Here are parts of the pension files of Major General Michael Kilroy:
File Reference MSP34REF839 (edited)
Michael Kilroy, Newport, County Mayo, Ireland
Date of death: 1962-12-23
Associated files in MSPA: 34A3;
Related files: 2D330 Michael Joseph Walsh; 2D331 Joseph Ruddy; 2D162 Austin Woods; all killed in the same incident that led to Michael Kilroy's capture in November 1922
Civilian occupation: Coach Builder
Organisation: Irish Volunteers; Brigade Quartermaster, Mayo Brigade; Commanding Officer Joseph McBride
Organisation: Irish Republican Army, Brigade Quartermaster, Brigade Mayo Brigade, Commanding Officer(s) Joseph McBride; T. Derrig;
Organisation: Irish Republican Army, Officer Commanding, Brigade West Mayo Brigade
Organisation: Irish Republican Army, Divisional Officer Commanding, Division 4 Western Division
Pension Claim: Yes; Award Pension: Yes. Awarded 9 years service for pension purposes in 1934
Scanned/digital cop:yW34A3MichaelKilroy.pdf - See more at: http://mspcsearch.militaryarchives.ie/detail.aspx?parentpriref=#sthash.v0J6fMsv.dpuf
File dates 15 January 1934 - 29 November 1977
File relates to Michael Kilroy's receipt of a military service pension in respect of his service with the Irish Volunteers and IRA between 1 April 1917 and 30 September 1923. Applicant also claimed unsuccessfully for service in the periods between 1 April 1916 and 31 March 1917. Michael Kilroy claims membership of the Irish Volunteers from 1913 and involvement in Irish nationalist movements for many years prior to that. During Easter Week 1916 Michael Kilroy mobilised members of the Newport Company, Irish Volunteers and oversaw the manufacture of an armoured car with a view to travelling to Dublin to take part in the fighting there. News of the surrender and the end of the fighting in Dublin prevented this taking place. Michael Kilroy did not receive recognition for pension purposes for this activity. From 1917 onwards Kilroy assisted in the reorganisation of the Irish Volunteers in County Mayo, took part in arms raids and served as Brigade Quartermaster. In [late 1920] Michael Kilroy became both an IRA brigade officer commanding as well as officer commanding of the Brigade Active Service Unit (Flying Column. During the War of Independence in 1921 Kilroy claims to have taken part in and/or organised in attacks on British forces in County Mayo at Westport, Carrowkennedy, Newport, Kilmeena, Skirdagh, Islandeady, Carnacloy and Glanisland - exact dates not on file. In November 1921, during the Truce Period, Michael Kilroy was appointed Officer Commanding of the 4 Western Division IRA. Following the outbreak of the Civil War on 28 June 1922 Kilroy claims to have taken part in fighting by anti-Treaty IRA forces against National Forces at Tubbercurry, County Sligo, Ballina, Glenamoy, Newport, Islandeady, Castlebar (County Mayo) and Clifden, County Galway - exact dates not on file. He was captured by National Forces on 24 November 1922 and interned until escaping from Mountjoy Prison where he was Officer Commanding Republican prisoners on 11 May 1924. File includes: typed transcript (3 pages) of sworn statement made by Michael Kilroy on 19 January 1935 before the Advisory Committee, Military Service Pensions Act, 1934; reference to subject's position as an elected member of Dáil Éireann; reference to claimant's receipt of a Service (1917-1921) Medal with Bar; and material relating to Michael Kilroy's widow. - See more at: http://mspcsearch.militaryarchives.ie/detail.aspx?parentpriref=#sthash.v0J6fMsv.dpuf
In his Application to the Minister for Defence for a Service Certificate under the Military Pensions Act, 1934), signed on January 12, 1935, Michael Kilroy of Newport, County Mayo, described his continuous active service during the Tan War and Civil War:
(1) Active Service — during the week commencing April 23, 1916:
"Mobilized under arms Easter Monday, 1916. Newport Co. Continuous until Sunday night 30th April 1916. West Mayo. See Darrel Figgi's Book on Volunteer movement for reference of our activities. No officer. I assumed Command. ... Occupied post previously prepared with food + arms in commanding position over R.I.C. barracks, Roads + Bridges, + held same for the week. Kept up communications with outlying Co. area (see Figgi's book referred to above) ..."
(2) Continuous Active Service — during the period from April 1, 1916 to April 22, 1916, and from April 30, 1916, to March 31, 1917:
Service in "Newport Co. Continuous attention to organization. ... I was Batt. O.C. + representative of Conty organizaion. Intensive organization entailing a considerable amount of time. Attended to distribution + carrying out all orders issued, both ordinary + special. ..."
(3) Continuous Active Service — during the period from April 1, 1917, to March 31, 1918:
Service in Mayo Brigade. Continuous. Officer Commnding Mr. Joseph McBridge, Brigadier. Intensive organization, drilling, trainingg. Perfecting communications, arms, repairing + equiping. I was Brigade Q. M. (quarermaster) -Great activity in connecion with anti-conscription campaign, general organization + special public Parades, ..."
(4) Continuous Active Service — during the period from April 1, 1918, to March 31, 1919:
Service in "Mayo Brigade. ... Officer Commanding Mr. Joseph McBride Brigadier. As Brigade Q.M. I carried out all orders issued by G.H.Q. within my power, including Finance collection, securing of arms, special training classes, etc. Raids for arms, explosive + ammunition and care of same afterwards, Training in general."
(5) Continuous Active Service — during the period from April 1, 1919, to March 31, 1920:
Service in "Mayo County. Mr. Joseph McBride (Commanding) , Mallow Cottage (Westport). By constant attnetion to organization + details as Q.M of the Brigade. Continuous organiing work + arming as Brigade Q.M. No absence except a period of illness in 1920.
(6) Continuous Active Service — during the period from April 1, 1920, to March 31, 1921:
Service in "No. 1 Brigade (West Mayo) Continuous service organizing. Left home in Oct 1920 and organized an A. S. U. (Active Service Unit or Flying Column). ... Commanding Mr. T. Derrig in this period. I became O.C. later. Was in almost constant charge of the A.S.U. + saw to the Brigade organization in general... Training arming + equipping still went on. Two attempts at attack were made on Crown Forces— One in Louisburgh, and one at Croagh Patrick."
(7) Continuous Active Service — during the period from April 1, 1921, to July 11, 1921 (day of the truce):
Service in: "No. 1 Brigade West Mayo. ... Myself as Brigadier responsible to G.H.Q. Continuously in charge of A.S.U. + Brigade oranization. Fights with Crown forces at Westport twice, Carrakenidy (Carrowkennedy) twice, Newport three times, Kilmeena, Skirdagh, Islandeady, Carnaclay, Glenisland, (Burrishoole Bridge attempted)."
(8) Continuous Active Service — during the period from July 12, 1921, to June 30, 1922:
Service in: "West Mayo Brigafe. From Nov. 1921, 4th Western Div. District The Western half of Co. Galway, West + North Mayo + a small portion of Sligo. Attended at executive meeting G.H.Q. as Western representative. ... Full time service as Div. O.C. Seveal Trainig Camps established. Kept permanent H. Qtrs. staff. Intensive Training."
(9) Continuous Active Service — during the period from July 1, 1922, to March 31, 1923:
Service in: "4th Western Div. Later Western Command. Whole time from 1st July 1922 until arrested 24th Nov. 1922 during an engagement at Newport. Connaught and at G.H.Q. Commanding Myself under G.H.Q. Was whole time officer as Div. O.C. + later as Command O.C. Caried out intensive training. Establisned explosive + grenade factories. Turned out + equipped four A.S.U in Mayo, two in Galway. Also a number in Sligo + Roscommon. Fights at Tubbercurry, Ballina, Glenlossera, Glenamoy, Newport, Islandeady,Castlebar, Clifden and others too numerous to mention. Not absent until Captured by Free State Troops on 24th Nov. 1922."
d) Officer Commanding in each instance "Michael Kilroy TD"
(10) Continuous Active Service — during the period from April 1, 1923, to September 30, 1923:
"Was imprisoned in Castlebar, Athlone, Mounjoy. Imprisond during full period from 24th Nov. 1922 until 11th Ma 1924. ... Was O.C. prisoners in Mountjoy prison."
Statement of any additional information which you consider may be of assistance in determining your application:—
"Was in constant touch with Sean McDermott since about 1911 pushing sale of 'Irish Freedom' etc. Paid £20 for Brother John + myself for arms, about the time of the landing of arms at Larn 1914 to Joseph McBride to be forwarded to his brother John McBride. We arranged to armour plate a car on Thursday of 1916 (Easter Week) to enable us reach Dublin + help operations there. On Friday morning we got the news of a gunboat shelling the City, which caused us to desist for the time."
As part of his sworn testimony on January 19, 1935, in support of his application, Michael Kilroy said:
"I mentioned in my application that in 1913 we paid as much as £20 for arms because we took the National Movement very seriously. I was for years before that in other organisations, for instance we had the Hibernians. We disagreed with their outook later and we started the American Alliance Hibernians. That was as early as 1909. I mentioned Mr. Darrel Figgis's book as a reference. The only mistake in that book is that it was not me but my brother who went to him. We are coach builders and the bunch of men in my house decided to construct an armoured car. Being so isolated as we were we thought it better to reach Dublin and thought it was unlikely that they would have another armoured car in Dublin. That was toward the end of the week and on the Friday morning we got very serious news re the gun boats. We decided to wait a while and every morning brought us worse news. My brother used to meet the train every morning to get the news. On Sunday evening we were brought the news from Castlebar to 'dump' arms. We had a job to get out all the stuff we had in the town without being seen. In my opinion that was more effective than those who got themselves imprisoned. I was able to be more useful afterwards.
"Q. You were arrested in November 1922. Were you in the whole time up to 1923?
"A. I escaped the 11th May 1924.
"Q. How did you manage to escape?
"A. I got assistance.
"Q. Were you 'on the loose' again up to the end?
"A. I was 'on the run' all the time after coming out.
"Q. Had you a bad time of it when you came out?
"A. Yes. There was one incident which happened on the last Sunday in July. It was the day of a Pilgrimage, and I was staying out the country. A friend of mine thought the military were very busy and became suspicious, so he got a fellow with a breadvan to come out with a message. When the military saw the breadvan leaving town they suspected something, and came out after it, but just as they arrived my wife was leaving by the front door, and that seemed to put them off the scent. I managed to escape by jumping into a patch of potatoes at the back of the house, and although they searched for me they did not get me."
The transcript of the sworn stement swas signed by Michael Kilroy n February 26, 1925.
Cumann na mBan
Cumann na mBan (Irishwomen's Council) was an organization that was made up entirely of women and girls who became substantial players in the Irish revolution.
"The British establishment, which Cumann na mBan sought to overthrow, also acknowledged the contribution of these female revolutionaries by outlawing, the organisation, along with several other nationalist organisations in 1919." Cumann na mBan and the Irish Revolution (Second Edition) by Cal McCarthy (The Collins Press 2014), page 1.
Here is part of A brief description of the military bodies constituting ‘the Forces’ as applicable to the Military Service Pensions Collection by Patrick Brennan, from the Guide to the Military Service (1916–1923) Pensions Collection at page 55:
Cumann na mBan: republican women’s organisation founded in Wynne’s Hotel, Dublin in April 1914 under the chairmanship of Agnes O’Farrelly, with Constance Markievicz, Kathleen Clarke, Áine Ceannt and Mrs Thomas Kettle among those present. It lost membership in November 1914 when it declared support for the Irish Volunteers. Cumann na mBan supported the 1916 Rising, with its members acting as couriers, aides and nurses, for example. In its constitution, adopted after the Rising, the organisation declared itself as pledged to work for the establishment of an Irish republic. Its organisation and territorial deployment in 1920–1921 was to mirror the brigade and battalion structure of the IRA and the membership actively assisted the republican movement during the War of Independence. A majority of its membership opposed the treaty. During the 1920s, led by Maud Gonne, the organisation supported the IRA and initiated the Easter lily commemorations in 1926.
Members of Cumann na mBan were made eligible for pensions by the Army Pension Act of 1932 and the Military Services Pensions Act of 1934. "The most significant effect of the 1934 Act was that applications for the award of pensions were now to be considered from persons who were deemed to have been serving in the Forces while such persons were ‘rendering active service’ in any of the bodies which constituted the Forces. The specific requirement to have service in the National Forces/Defence Forces (Free Staters) after 1 July, 1922 did not now apply. ... Cumann na mBan was also now included in the ‘military bodies’ constituting the Forces." (Guide, supra, page 67.) Here is an explanation from pages 70–71 of the Guide:
Cumann na mBan service
General principles in interpreting Qualifying Service and Active Service under the 1934 Act for Cumann na mBan members are set out in a memorandum by Advisory Committee member, John Mc Coy. 28 He points out that the service recognised should be ‘service of a military nature’ and ‘if pretty continuous during a qualifying period should be taken into account as the essence for qualifying purposes’. He includes the following:
‘a. In charge of despatches in a despatch centre in an active service area or acting as a necessary link in an important despatch line ... carrying ... constantly ... through dangerous areas;
b. Important service in connection with places used as a headquarters in an active service area ... Brigade or Battalion Headquarters or for rest purposes between engagements by a column;
c. In charge of dumps where a considerable supply of arms and other munitions were constantly kept ... claimant with principal responsibility for safety and contents regularly handed out and replenished. Personal responsibility for the care and safety of important documents in claimant’s own house;
d. Intelligence work ... valuable ... pretty continuous and carried out under dangerous conditions;
e. First aid where a claimant was specially detailed for attending wounded or looked after a wounded man in own house set aside for such purpose; the continuity and perhaps danger of service should be evident;
f. All full-time work of a dangerous nature which was considered essential by Senior IRA officer in command of the area or full-time work undertaken for Cumann na mBan Headquarters ...’
McCoy also stated that he considered that the constitution of the organisation should not have any influence whatever on the question of assessing military service. ‘The Constitution was drafted before the intensive military activity of the Tan War commenced ... there is no mention made of the care of arms and dumps, despatches, intelligence work. These activities were generally more important than the activities mentioned in the Constitution’.
The Irish Military Service Pensions Collection contain many rolls of membership for the organization: Cumann na mBan Nominal Rolls (Ref. Code: CMB/ 1-165. Here is the part of the explanation of the rolls in the Guide to the Military Service (1916–1923) Pensions Collection at page 26:
Cumann na mBan nominal rolls
Membership rolls for Cumann na mBan are organised on a county basis and contain the ranks of officers, the names, postal addresses and maiden names where applicable of the membership at District, Branch and Squad level with the strengths on 11 July, 1921 and 1 July, 1922. Rolls are signed and dated by the officers concerned. Deceased members are named and location of surviving members, if abroad, given.
For example, files for Cumann na mBan in county Mayo (Files 27 to 40 incl) show a total membership of 2,045 on 11 July, 1921 and a total membership of 2,167 on 1 July, 1922. Westport District Council (File 28) has a membership of 579 on 11 July and was organised in fourteen Branches/Squads while Ballinrobe District Council (File 31) was attached to the south Mayo Brigade IRA and was organised in three Branches/Companies.
I found my wife's mother, Nancy Kilroy, in the file on the Westport District Council — West Mayo Brigade Area.
Glenhest Cumann na mBan. Attached to D. Coy. 2nd Battalion. West Mayo Brigade. 4th Western Division (July 11, 1921) ... (The lists include 63 members.)
Nancy Kilroy [my wife Teel's mother]
Kate Kilroy ...
Maggie McManamon (Mrs.) ...
In 1922, Nancy Kilroy and Miss Kelly (probably Maggie Agnes Kelly, treasurer of the section) are listed as the only delegates of the Glenhest section to the fortnightly District Council Meetings that were held in Westport. The Newport delegates to those meetings were Mrs. M. (Michael) Kilroy (Annie Leonard Kilroy) , her sister-in-law Tilly Kilroy (who married Petie Joe McDonnell on May 17, 1921), and Annie O'Malley.
Here are other entries in the rolls:
Commitee representative of each branch in the three battalions forming the Wesport District Council, 11th July 1921 & 1st July, 1922 (MA/MSPC/CMB/27)
Newport Battalion Area (page 26)
1. Mrs. Michael Kilroy (Rep. Newport) — Medlicott St., Newport, Co. Mayo — Former Rank: Vice President of D.C. [Annie Leonard Kilroy]
2. Mrs. Gallagher Kelly (Rep. Brocagh) — Gorthaclasser, Clogher, Westport — Former Rank: Vice President of Brocagh Branch & Delegate to D.C.
3. Mrs. Thomas Noone (Rep. Shramore) — Furnace, Newport, Co. Mayo — Former Rank: President Shramore Branch & Delgate to D.C.
4. Mrs. Maggie Agnes Kelly — Cloggernaugh, Glenhest, Newport, Co. Mayo — Former Rank: Treasurer Glenhest Branch & Delegate to D.C. in 1922.
5. Mrs. Tilly O'Donnell (Rep. Trevnaur Branch) — Tiernauer, Newport, Co. Mayo — Former Rank: Sec. & Treasurer to the Branch.
6. Miss Am M. Gill (Rep. Kilmeena Branch) — The Islands, Kilmeena, Westport, Co. Mayo [Listed in other places both as A. Marie Gill and Mary Anne Gill] ...
West Mayo Brigade Cumann na mBan (MA/MSPC/CMB/28)
Westport District Council
Newport Branch — Strength - 48 (On both July 11, 1921, and July 1, 1922) (page 14)
Captain: Mrs. M. Kilroy
Adjt. or Sec.: Mrs. Tilly McDonnell [Tilly Kilroy, daughter of Michael and Annie Leonard Kilroy. who married Petie Joe McDonnell]
Treasurer: Mrs. M. Kilroy ...
District Council Meetings --- Held in Westport Fortnightly — Delegates from Each Branch:
2. Newport --- Mrs. M. Kilroy, Tilly Kilroy, Annie O'Malley ...
5. Glenhest --- Maggie Jame Mulhern, Mrs. Rowland, --in 1922 Nancy Kilroy & Miss Kelly.
District Council Officers elected at a duly convened Council Meeting held in Westport:
President: --- Mrs. Tessi O'Briain (Tessie Moane)
Vice Presd.: --- Mrs. M. Kilroy
Treasurer: --- Mrs. C. Hughes.
Secretary: --- Miss Lilly Knight.
District Council: Area:- Westport (On both July 11, 1921, and July 1, 1922) [page 16]
President: Mrs. Tessie O Brien (Tessie Moane) — Address: Victoria Ave. Cork (Tessie Moane, Westport Mayo)
Adjt. or Secretary: Miss Lilly Knight — Address: Triangle, Westport, Co. Mayo
Teasurer: Mrs. Hughes — Address: Westport, Co. Mayo
Vice-President: Mrs. M. Kilroy — Medlicott, Newport, Co. Mayo. ...
District Council Meetings --- Held in Westport Fortnightly — Delegates from Branch. [page 17]
2. Newport---Mrs. M. Kilroy, Tilly Kilroy, Annie O'Malley
Officers of the Above --- Elected at a duly convened Council Meeting --- held in Westport. [page 17]
President: --- Mrs. Tessie O'Brianin (Tessie Moane)
Vice Presd.: --- Mrs. M. Kilroy
Teasurer: --- Mrs. C. Hughes
Secretary: --- Miss Lilly Knight
Glenhest Cumann Na mBan. Attached to D. Coy. 2nd Battalion. West Mayo Brigade. 4th Western Division (July 11, 1921) ... (The list include 63 members.) [pages 22 and 23]
Nancy Kilroy [My wife Teel's mother]
Kate Kilroy ...
Maggie McManamon (Mrs.) ...
Cumann Na mBann. C. Company. Newport. Attached to Newport Batt. West Mayo Brigade on 1st & 2nd critical dates. 4th Western Division. (On both July 11, 1921, and July 1, 1922) (49 persons on list) [pages 30 and 31]
Mrs. M. Kilroy. Presd. and Treasurer. [at the bottom of the list]
Maggie Kilroy. Carrickneady.
Margaret Kilroy, Mrs. Tom McGrory [sic].) Now Dead. ... [Should be McRory or McCrory]
Mrs. John Kilroy. Main St., Newport. [Margaret Leonard Kilroy, sister of Annie Leonard Kilroy]
Julia Kilroy. Bleachyard. Mrs. Tim Noone. Now U.S.A.[Daughter of John Kilroy and Bridget O'Boyle. Julia is listed as 18 years old and living with her family in Bleachyard, East Newport, in the 1911 census of Ireland. Julia Klroy, age 25, a domestic, whose last residence is listed as Bleachyard, and whose nearest relative is listed as her mother, Mrs. Bridget Kilroy, Bleachyard, Newport, Mayo, is listed on the manifest of the S.S. Celtic, which sailed from Liverpool on November 19, 1921, and arrived in New York on November 28, 1921. Her final destination was Cleveland, Ohio.]
Maggie Kilroy. Leharrow. Now England.
Kate McManamon. Mrs. Tom Moran. Furnace. Newport.
Bridgie Feehan. Mrs. J. Brawn. Shop St. Westport
Tilly Kilroy. (Mrs. Petie McDonald) [should be McDonnell]. Galway City. [The second copy of this list, page 31, states that Tilly Kilroy served as secretary of the group.]
Ellen McGoff and Kate McGoff are on both list for the Killawala chapter. Both had moved to U.S.A. [page 35] Bridget Kilroy was on both Shramore (Furnace) lists. She had moved to the U.S.A.
Shramore Coy, Cumann na mBan — Attached o E. Coy. 2nd Battalion, West Mayo Brigade 4th Western Division 11th July 1921 and 1st July 1922. [page 46]
Kate Noone, Coy. Q.M. & President, Furnace, Newport, Mayo.
Bridget Kilroy U.S.A.
Mary Kilroy. Furnace
Rose Kilroy. Furnace.
Two pension files give a good idea of services performed by members of Cumann na mBan:
Here is the summary of the file:
Subject Information File relates to Kate Noone's successful application for a military service pension in respect of her service with Cumann na mBan for parts and full periods between 1 April 1920 to 30 September 1923 (applicant claims full service from 1 April 1917 to 30 September 1923). Awarded 2 and 19/36 years of service for pension purposes in March 1941. Applicant states that she joined Cumann na mBan in 1917 and had soon charge of the Shramore Section of Cumann na mBan. Applicant was involved in routine duties until 1920/1921 (first aid lectures, collecting funds...). In 1920/1921, applicant carried dispatches, mainly to Newport and provided support to the column men. At the onset of the Civil War, her house was used by Divisional Officers and meeting were held there regularly. The house was raided frequently. Activities continued until the cease fire. File contains: material relating to the pension application and its payment to the applicant; application for pension (completed and dated 23 December 1935); life certificate dated February 1941; reference letters from Michael Kilroy, Tom Cleary and John Connolly, P.J.[McDonald], Annie Kilroy; handwritten statement of activities (1917-1923) signed by applicant; typed summary of evidence and typed sworn statement made by applicant before Advisory Committee dated 11 March 1938.
In supplemental pages to her application for a service certificate, Kate Noone states:
4th Period (April 1, 1921, to November 11, 1921) [page 22]
"I was sent by the I. R A to the Several districts to organise dances + Concerts. to collect Money for Military use + other Comforts. As the people in the District were very poor + our Army did not like to intrude on them I went + collected Grocery, Food Flour Cigarettes + Socks + delivered them myself among them. Collected their Washing + brought them useful Intelligence + often times gave them my own Bed, while I kept watch for the enemy all night. Purchased matial + made Haversacks and Bandoliers."
Among several letters in the file are these:
Letter from Michael Kilroy dated 2nd November, 1937. (page 23)
Letter from Petie Joe McDonnell dated July 29, 1937. (page 28)
Letter from Annie Kilroy dated March 10, 1938: (page 29):
10th March, 1938
Military Pension Board
Mrs. Thos Noone Furnace was appointed President of the Shramore* Branch Cumann na mBan when formed. Represented that Branch on the District Council and was President of the Divisional Committee if I.R.P.D.F. since it was formed until the end.
She was so thoughtful and thorough about the needs of the A.S.U. that it was quite customary when the boys spotted her coming in the distance to hear them say in good humour "Here comes our Q.M."
Signed. /s/ Annie Kilroy
O C. Cumann-na-mban
Newport. Batt. Area
*Srahmore in 1911 census and on Google maps — about 5 kilometers north of the north end of Lough Feeaugh, up the Srahmore River in the foothills of the Nephin Beg Mountains.
Michael Kilroy is named as one of the principal officer who stayed at the house of Kate Noone during the Civil War. Her house was Divisional Headquarters during the Civil War. (page 33)
On February 26, 1941, Kate Noone. born in 1880, was granted a pension of eleven pounds and five shillings a year. Kate Noone died on April 9, 1964, and a final payment of £6.10.1 was made to her daughter, Mrs. Mary McManamon of Rossow, Newport, Co. Mayo, on May 13, 1964. . At the time of her death, Kate Noone was receiving a pesnion at the rate of £23.13.3 per year. On June 20, 1964, £45.15 was paid to Mrs. Edward McManamon, Rossow, Newport and to Messrs, Kilroy Bros., Medlicott St., Newport, Co. Mayo, for funder expenses of Kate Noone.
1911 census of Ireland:
Residents of a house 10 in Furnace (Srahmore, Mayo)
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Religion Noone Thomas 32 Male Head of Family Roman Catholic Noone Katie 33 Female Wife Roman Catholic Noone Kathleen J 5 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Noone Mary B 2 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Walsh Mary A 10 Female Boarder Roman Catholic
House 7 in Funrace is that of Patrick Kilroy, age 69, and family.
The parents of Thomas Noone, born in Mayo on December 8, 1879, were John Noone and Ellen Kilroy Noone. Ireland, Select Births and Baptisms, 1620–1911 (FHL Film #256041)
Here is the summary of the file:
File relates to Agnes Gallagher's successful application for a military service pension in respect of her service with Cumann na mBan for the period from 1 April 1919 to 10 September 1930 (applicant claims service from 1 April 1916 - including Easter week - to 30 September 1923). Awarded 3 and 1/2 years of service for pension purposes in February 1942. States she was acting President of the Westport Branch, following the marriage of Miss Moane in 1918. Applicant appeals for rank. Applicant joined Cumann na mBan in 1915 and was first appointed Captain of the Westport Branch. Her pre-Truce activities involved raising funds through the organisation of concerts (c.1916), working with the Irish Republican Brotherhood (of which the members were meeting in her house; she names Tom Derrig, Ned Moane, Arthur Griffith and Michael Kilroy). Her place was also the dispatch centre for Westport. She then provided office accommodation for Courts of Dail (courts held in Westport town). House was raided at that time. Her music school had to close down as the children were afraid to come in. Up until the Truce she provided clothes and food to the West Mayo A.S.U. and continued dispatch work. Owing to much hostility from Auxiliaries, she had to leave her home in November 1921 until Christmas. She organised Cumann na mBan in the Islands and in Islandmore and Clew Bay. Resumed dispatch and communication work when returned home. She also kept arms and ammunition. During the Civil War, she continued to provide food, clothes and ammunition to I.R.A. men while continuing to operate a 'communication station' in her house. She was arrested in January 1923 and interned in Kilmainham where she participated in hunger strikes. She states she lost her eye-sight there. She specifies in her statement that she could not work again after that. The file contains original, filled in application form (dated 21 January 1935) , general correspondence relating to the application and payment of the pension; reference letters from Michael Kilroy, Joseph McBride, T.O Deirg, E.Moane, J.Malone, P.J. Davey, John Gibbons, Charles Gavan, Thomas Kittrick, Joseph Baker, J.A.Madden ; life certificate dated February 1942; typed summary of evidence and typed sworn statement made before Advisory Committee on 23 july 1937; typed and handwritten statement of activities; Mayo News dated 5 August 1916.
In her application for a Service Certificate, Agnes Gallagher states that she was the acting president of the Westport Cumman na mBan and that that she had to go "on the run" during the perod from April 1, 1920 through March 31, 1921.
"Found it impossible to reside at home. Had to go "on the run" owing to aids by Black + Tans due to my activities. Endeavoured to carry on dispatch work etc." (page 6 of the application; page 8 of the website)
Here is part of her sworn testimony in support of her application for a pension:
Q, Owing to many hostilities (you) had to leave home - is that correct?
A. Yes, I had.
Q. Had you to leave home for long?
A. I think is was November I went. And it was about before Xmas I got home. I had to leave: the Tans came for me. The enquired for Miss Agnes Gallagher. They did not know me. They were strangers in the locality. And they had revolvers in their hands.
Q. You were on the run and were away from home for more than a month?
A. I think it was longer than that. I had to go away to the Islands.
Q. Did you do any Cumann na mBan work while you were away?
A. Indeed I did. I organized the girls in the Islands, Islandmore - that was H.Q. for the I.R.A. Ned Moane and all the fellows were there.
Q. Was there a Branch formed?
A. No, it was not a Branch, but I got them attachd to the Westport Cumann na mBan and they used to do scouring and all that kind of thing to see when the boats were coming for them. It was by sea they used always to come. They could not go by road. That was the reason Iorganized them down there.
Q, Where was this?
A. Islandmore, Clew Bay. (6th period, pzge 6 of swron testimony, page 52of website).
During the period from April 1, 1923, to September 30, 1923, she was "arrested for activities" by the Free Staters and imprisoned in Galway and Kilmainha, North Dublin, and carried out two hunger strikes. She later states that she "lost my sight and suffered other injuries whilst in prison and could not reseume my profession as music teacher ever since."
A letter from Michael Kilroy dated March 24, 1937, in her pension file reads in part:
I certify that Miss Agnes Gallagher, Bridge St., Werstport, has been an active member of Cumann na mBan since its inception in Westport about the year 1915. I knew her much earlier and looked upon her as a great enthusiast in our various national movements. I remember having an I.R.B. meeting there prior to 1916. Miss Gallagher often accomodated the I.R.A. by arranging for meetings in her rooms. I often met Mr. Thomas Derrig, Minister for Education there by appointment as well as many other officers.
On many occasions I picked up dispatches there, besides verbal instructions when the written word may not be safe. Miss Gallagher's was a general call-house for the I.R.A. from the earliest days of the movement to the end.
She also rendered valuable service in the Cumann na Mban oganization by assisting to collect funds by means of concerts etc. By her assistance in securing First Aid equipment, Haversacks ammunition and clothing she also rendered valuable service. (page 25)
On February 18, 1942, Agnes Gallagher was awarded a penson of £17.10.0 a year.
Edward "Ned" and Matilda "Tillie" Kilroy and their Descendants
The grandparents of my wife Teel (Matilda) Whelton McGough, and parents of Major General Michael Kilroy, were Edward Kilroy (c. 1842 c. 1902 ?) of Furnace, Newport, county Mayo, and Matilda Kilroy (c. 1859August 19, 1908) of Carrickaneady, Newport. They were married on November 20, 1873, in Derryloughan.
The 1901 census of Ireland lists these residents of house #1 in Derryloughan More (New Port East, Burrishoole Parish, Mayo)—all born in County Mayo and all speaking both the Irish and English language:
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Occupation Religion Kilroy Edward 59 Male Head of Family Shepherd Roman Catholic Kilroy Matilda 42 Female Wife Roman Catholic Kilroy Mary 24 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Kilroy Bridgid 22 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Kilroy John 21 Male Son Roman Catholic Kilroy Peter 18 Male Son Roman Catholic Kilroy Patrick 14 Male Son Scholar Roman Catholic Kilroy Domnick 11 Male Son Scholar Roman Catholic Kilroy Maggie 8 Female Daughter Scholar Roman Catholic Kilroy Matilda 6 Female Daughter Scholar Roman Catholic Kilroy Anne 1 Female Daughter Roman Catholic
In addition to a two room dwelling house, the family also had a barn, a cow house, and a piggery. The fifth child, Michael Kilroy, is not on this list. He is probably the Michael Kilroy, age 16, born in county Mayo, an apprentice carpenter, listed in the houseshold of Joseph Stratford, age 30. a master carpenter, at 85 Mount Street, Claremorris, county Mayo. A second apprentice carpenter in the Stratford household was John Mannion, also age 16, and also born in county Mayo. Joseph H. Stratford's death at age 37 was registered in Claremorris in the second quarter of 1905. Ireland, Civil Registration Deaths Index, 1864–1958 (volume 4, page 107; FHL Film Number 101602).
By 1911, the Edward Kilroy family had split into two dwellings. The 1911 census of house 1 in Derryloughan, More (Newport, East, Parish of Burrishoole, Mayo) lists these residents — all born in County Mayo:
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Occupation Marital Status Religion Kilroy Edward 71 Male Head of Family Herd Widower Roman Catholic Kilroy Domnick 21 Male Son Assistant Herd Single Roman Catholic Kilroy Maggie 18 Female Daughter — Single Roman Catholic Malley Maggie 11 Female Niece Scholar Single Roman Catholic
The 1911 census of house 1, a private dwelling, in Carrowbaun (Derryloughan, Parish of Burrishoole, Mayo) lists these residents — all single:
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Occpation Where Born Religion Kilroy John 31 Male Head of Family Coachbuilder County Mayo Roman Catholic Kilroy Michael 26 Male Brother Coachbuilder County Mayo " Kilroy Patrick 23 Male Brother Coachbuilder County Mayo " Kilroy Matilda 15 Female Sister Domestic County Mayo " McDonnell Peter 19 Male Boarder Coachbuilder County Galway "
Matilda (Tillie) Kilroy would marry Peter McDonnell on May 21, 1921, while her new husband Peter and her brother Michael were engaged in combat operations with the I. R. A. (see below).
The Chambers Family History, written in 1978 by Michael Chambers (born in Furnace on June 30, 1916) is a worthwhile resource on the history of this Kilroy family.
"Long Jim Kilroy lived in the old home. The other brother John lived quite near. Jim and John were married to two sisters named Keane from Gortaworla, a village quite near. Their sister Tilly Kilroy was married to Eddie Kilroy and they lived in Derrylahan [also spelled Derryloughan] about a half a mile from Newport on the East side of the Mulranny road. Eddie Kilroy was born in Furnace and was a brother to Jimmy Kilroy who was married to Mary Chambers my aunt. Michael Kilroy the TD* was son to Eddie and Tilly of Derrylahan."
*TD = T.D.: (Member of the Dail, or Irish Parliament of the 26 counties. Glossary of Irish Terms and Acronyms.
There are more extensive quotations from this work below.
One genealogy chart of the Chambers family on the Internet says that Margaret Chambers was the maiden name of the mother of the Matilda (Tillie) Kilroy who married Edward (Ned) Kilroy. The chart is a family tree collected on the Newport Historical Society Genealogy page of the Burrishoole Roots website. You can also enter this site through the Chambers family page. The Chambers Family History goes on to say this:
"Margaret Chambers was step sister to my grand dad Tom. She was a Mrs Kilroy from Carrickaneady about one and a half miles the Castlebar side of Newport. She had 4 sons and 2 daughters. Two of her sons got killed on the railway in America.
"Long Jim Kilroy lived in the old home. The other brother John lived quite near. Jim and John were married to two sisters named Keane from Gortaworla, a village quite near.
"Their sister Tilly Kilroy was married to Eddie Kilroy and they lived in Derrylahan about a half a mile from Newport on the East side of the Mulranny road. Eddie Kilroy was born in Furnace and was a brother to Jimmy Kilroy who was married to Mary Chambers my aunt ...
"Michael Kilroy the TD was son to Eddie and Tilly of Derrylahan." [Derryloughan is the modern way to spell the townland.] (For more extensive quotation from this article, see the end of this section.)
County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880, by William G. Masterson, at page 55, lists these children born to Michael Kilroy, landholder of Carrickaneady, and Margaret Chambers: James Kilroy, born September 16, 1864; Margaret Kilroy, born August 5, 1866; John Kilroy, born June 7, 1868; Elenor Kilroy, born June 9, 1870; and Dominick Kilroy, born on November 4, 1872. This listing does not include my wife's grandmother, Matilda Kilroy, who most sources say was a daughter of Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers; nor does the list include her brother, Martin Kilroy.
An email of September 29, 2002, from Ray Geraghty of New York, also says that Matilda Kilroy's parents were Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers, and says that Matilda had a brother, Martin Kilroy, who moved from Ireland to St. Louis:
"Martin Kilroy* born.1862 in Carrickaneady, Newport, Co. Mayo, a brother of Matilda, son of Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers emigrated to USA in the 1890s. Martin settled in St. Louis and married my grandfather's sister Mary Geraghty, also from Carrickaneady."
"I was in St. Louis two weeks ago for the first time and met some of Martin's grandchildren."
*The 1900 census of St. Louis, Missouri (roll 889, page 236), lists at 2917 Newstead Avenue Martin Kilroy, age 30, born in Ireland in January, 1870, married for 3 years, 24 years in the US, naturalized, a policeman; his wife, Marie K. Kilroy, age 27, born in Ireland in August, 1872, emigrated in 1882, 18 years in the US, mother of 2 children, both living; with their two sons, Robert M. Kilroy, age 1, born in Missouri in August of 1898; and Francis Kilroy, age 1 month, born in Missouri in April, 1900. The manifest of the Baltic, which arrived in New York from Queenstown on October 28, 1904, lists as US citizens, with a last residence in Newport, and with a husband and father named Martin Kilroy at 2917 Newstead Avenue, St Louis: Mrs. Maria Kilroy, age 30, married, a housewife; Robert Kilroy, age 5, born in America; Francis Kilroy, age 4, born in America; Martin Kilroy, age 1, born in America; and Louis Kilroy, age 1 month, who had beeen born in Ireland.
County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson, at page 55, lists as born to Martin Kilroy, landholder of Carrickaneady, and Bridget Geraghty, the following children: Patrick Kilroy, born February 15, 1868; Mary Kilroy, born March 25, 1869; James Kilroy, born March 11, 1871; John Kilroy, born November 16, 1872; Matilda Kilroy, born August 20, 1874; Martin Kilroy, born October 24, 1876; Thomas Kilroy, born November 28, 1878; Michael Kilroy, born July 22, 1880; and Dominick Kilroy, born July 22, 1880. Additional children listed in Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson, page 40, are: Bridget Kilroy, born December 28, 1882; and Peter Kilroy, born on January 20, 1887. The 1901 census of Burrishoole parish lists in the townland of Carrickaneady: Martin Kilroy, age 60, farmer, Roman Catholic, born in Ireland; his wife, Bridget, age 54; and children: Mary, age 27; Bridget, age 17; and Peter, age 13; and a visitor, Bridget Chambers, age 40.
The ten children of Edward (Ned) and Matilda (Tillie) Kilroy were:
(1) — Mary Kilroy (September 19, 18751948) (the oldest), who married Michael (Mickey) McManamon (18691958) of Glenhest in about 1906 or 1907 (see below). Their children were Joseph (m. Molly McManamon), Matilda (m. Tom Doyle), Mary (m. Thomas Battle), and Margaret (m. Owen Mullins). Their second daughter, Mary, married Thomas Battle. Their third daughter, Margaret, who died in 1974, married Owen Mullins, who was a fixture at the Newport House for over forty years. We met him there, and found that he had visited Teel's mother, Nancy Kilroy Whelton, in Galveston, Texas. The 1901 census shows Mary Kilroy as age 24, not married, and living with her parents.When Teel's grandmother, Matilda Kilroy, died in August of 1908, Teel's mother, Anne (Nancy) Kilroy, was eight years old. Nancy was raised by Mary Kilroy McManamon, her oldest sister. Nancy grew up in the same household with a younger cousin, Mary McManamon, who became Mary Battle. When Nancy, Teel's mother, was in her last illness in Galveston, Texas, in 1986, Mary Battle came from Ballina Ireland to Galveston to take care of Nancy. Mary Battle, who was alive and well in Ballina in 2002*, gave me much of the data that is on this page.
"Jim McHugh was a nephew to Michael McManamon. Michael was a Glenhest man and he was married to Mary Kilroy who was a daughter to Eddie and Tilly of Derrylahan." The Chambers Family History
*Mary Battle died at the age of 96 in Ballina, county Mayo. Here is an obituary published by the Irish Independent on August 2, 2011:
BATTLE (nee McManamon) (John St., Ballina, Co. Mayo) Aug. 1, 2011, (peacefully) at the Mayo General Hospital, (Member of Knock Shrine Society Handmaids), Mary, in her 96th year, pre-deceased by her husband Tommy; sadly missed by her nephews Pauric Doyle (Ballina) and Pat McManamon (Newport), nieces Maura Hartney (Dublin) and Margaret Cantwell (Dublin), grandnephews, grandnieces, great-grandnephews, great-grandnieces, in-laws, relatives and friends. May she rest in peace. Reposing at McGowans Funeral Home, Ballina tomorrow (Wednesday) evening from 6.30 o'c. with Removal at 8 o'c. to St. Muredach's Cathedral. Requiem Mass on Thursday morning at 11 o'c. with Funeral proceeding to Leigue Cemetery. Family flowers only please. Donations, in lieu, to the Patient Comfort Fund St. Joseph's Hospital, Ballina C/O McGowans Funeral Home.
"The death has occurred of Mary BATTLE (née McManamon)
John Street, Ballina, Mayo
"Reposing at McGowan’s Funeral Home, Ballina on Wednesday evening from 6.30pm with removal at 8pm to St. Muredach’s Cathedral, Ballina. Requiem Mass on Thursday at 11am. Burial afterwards in Leigue Cemetery, Ballina."
My wife Teel's mother, Nancy Kilroy, was living with her sister and brother-in-law, in 1911. (Her name is written in Gaelic on the census return, and translated as Nancy Gilroy instead of the correct Nancy Kilroy.) The 1911 census of house 12 in Cloondaff (Glenhest, Parish of Addergoole, Mayo), as translated, lists these residents, all born in County Mayo and all listed as speaking both Irish and English
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Occupation Religion Mc Manmon (should be McManamon*) Michael 42 Male Head of Family Farmer Roman Catholic Mc Manmon (should be McManamon*) Mary 34 Female Wife — Roman Catholic Mc Manmon (should be McManamon*) Phelim 28 Male Brother — Roman Catholic Gilroy (should be Kilroy) Nancy 11 Female Sister-in-Law Scholar Roman Catholic
* The Family Return.—Form A shows the Name of Head of Family as Michael Mac Manamon. The Form B.1.—House and Building Return spells the name McManamon. Both documents are part of the census return.
(2) — Bridget Kilroy (July 4, 1877), who married Pat McNeela of Ballycroy. Their children were May, Matilda (Tillie), Margaret (Maggie), Jack,* Bridie, Paddy, Michael (Mick), Eamon, Martin, and Joseph. (O'Grady does not list Martin.) The 1901 census shows Bridget as age 22, not married, and living with her parents. Margaret McNeela of Knockmoyle, county Mayo, is the author of Glorious Glenhest: Memories of a Community.
*Sean 'Jack' McNeela from Mayo (Ballycroy) died on hunger strike after 55 days in Mountjoy Jail on April 19, 1940. On the day before he died, "Seán McNeela’s uncle, Mick Kilroy, the Fianna Fáil TD, came to see him. He attacked Seán for 'daring to embarrass de Valera' the 'heaven-sent leader' by such action and demanded that McNeela give up his hunger strike at once. McNeela ordered him out of the room. ... The next day April 19 Seán McNeela, the IRA Volunteer from Ballycroy, County Mayo, died. ... An IRA order to end the hunger strike was sent to the prison on the day before by GHQ but word had not got in in time to save McNeela." " IrishRepublicanNet (April 16, 2011).
The 1911 cenus of Clagganmountain (Ballycroy, South Mayo) lists Pat McNeela, age 46, a farmer, with his wife, Bridget McNeela, age 34, and two daughers, Mary Agness, age 2, and Matilda, age 3 months, all born in County Mayo. Patrick McNeela died in Claggan on March 9, 1954, at the age of 89 years. His wife Brigid (nee Kilroy) died in Claggan on Auust 9, 1956, at the age of 78, according to their gravestone. See: Claggan (St. Fintany's Graveyard Headstones (Location: Claggan, Ballycroy, Kilcommon, Erris, Mayo), no. 98. See: The Chambers Family History, page 21.
(3) — John Francis Kilroy (sometimes listed as Francis Kilroy) (May 14, 18791963). who was born in Derrylahan and died in Newport at the age of 84, married Margaret (Mag) Leonard (1893–1962) (sister of Nan (Annie) Leonard who married John's brother Michael; both were sisters of Jack Leonard, the famous photographer) of Crossmolina, Mayo. They were married in 1912 in Newport. Their children were Mary (born 1914, m. James O'Grady), Matilda (19151985, m. Ezra McManamon in London), Edward (born 1917, m. Ellen Philema Ketterick on September 25, 1949, in Westport, county Mayo), Michael (19201981, m. Vera Bradshaw in October, 1945, in England), Catherine (Cait, Kate, Catherine, m. Patrick Doherty), Sean (19211942), and Dominick (19291978, m. Monique Lisback in 1956 in Castlebar, then Grace, in Wembley, Middlesex, England). The 1901 census shows John as age 21, living with his parents, and not married. (The Kilroy Family website lists, in the fourth generation, John Kilroy who died about 1963 in county Mayo, Ireland, at about age 83.)
The birth of John Kilroy to Edward Kilroy and Matilda Kilroy Kiloy on May 14, 1879, in Derrylahan, Mayo, Ireland, is recorded in Ireland Births and Baptisms, 1620–1911 (FHL film number 256030).
John Kilroy was an active fighter in the Irish War of Independence and the following Civil War, always on the side of a Republic to be entirely separated from England. In his Application to the Minister for Defence for a Service Certificate under the Military Pensions Act, 1934 ), signed on March 30, 1935, Peter J. McDonnell noted "Am presently Army Officer" and described his continuous active service during the Tan War and Civil War:
(1) Active Service — during the week commencing April 23, 1916:
"Heard of Rising on Tuesday of Easter Week. Was Coy. (Company) Capt. Leenane. Tried to get men to mobilise - could only get one man to turn out. Had 2 revolvers, double barrel gun & .22 rifle with about 200 rds ammo for each. Could get no definite information as to fighting. Was waiting to get word from Galway. On Saturday I cycled 30 miles to Newport with 2 revolvers to join Newport men. Joined up with M C & John Kilroy, Jas Clinton & Dominick Kilroy (now deceased) and M C William Moran. ... I did not do any active fighting for the simple reason that I got no opportunity. Owing to my activities at the time, I was refused an extension to holding of land on estate then being divided by C. D. B. & have not got an extension since."
John Kilroy was arrested and imprisoned on January 6, 1921. He was in Galway for a period and afterwards in the Rath Internment Camp, The Curragh, County Kildare. On the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty on December 6, 1921, the Rath Camp was closed and its remaining prisoners leased. ("The Rath Camp came into being as a centre of internment again a year later during the Irish Civil War, when it held around 1200 prisoners." See Covert Photogaphy in Rath Internment Camp, Joseph Lawless, 1921.)
On May 24, 1923, John Kilroy was a member of the senior staff of the 4th Western Division of the IRA, and was captured in North Connemara, along with P. J. McDonnell, Stephen Coyne, and Jack Feehan. Petie Joe McDonnell, Jack Feehan, and John Kilroy all arrived at Tintown Internment Camp, Curragh, Kidare, in the first week of August, 1923. They were probably transferred there from the Galway Gaol.
The Irish Military Service Pensions Collection provides little information about the service record of John Kilroy. The little I have found is in the IRA Nominal Rolls (Ref Code: RO/1–611 under the 4th Western Division under RO/326–331, 1 Brigade-West Mayo. MA/MSPC/RO/326, 4th Western Division, 1st Brigade (West Mayo GHQ). An undated document in that file is headed: West Mayo Brigade. List of Applicants who have already been examined before the Referee and Advisory Committee. ( page 41). Among the 31 names on the list are:
5691 Kilroy, James Ballayglass, Belmullet, Co. Mayo.
3450 Kilroy, John Newport, Co. Mayo.
50 Moane, Edw. T.D. Carrabawn. Westport.
971 Kittrick, Thos. c/o Earlsfort Hotel, Earlsfort Tcrrace. Dublin.
On November 21, 1934, Michael Kilroy asked for two forms of application for military service certificates: one for himself and one for his brother, John Kilroy, Main St., Newport Mayo. The foregoing document indicates and John Kilroy filed the application and was examined by the pension board. By a letter of April 15, 1935, John Kilroy of Newport told his brother-in-law, Petie Joe McDonnell, that he (John) had been called up to Dublin to go before the Pensions Board on Thursday morning, April 18, 1935. In the letter, John Kilroy also mentions that he had filed a certificate from J. J. Leonard that he (John) had been appointed Assistant Division I. O. by O/C P. J. McDonnell on J. J. Leonard's recommendation. Despite this information, I have not been able to find any record that indicates the disposition of the application.
MA/MSPC/RO/328, 4th Western Division, 1st Brigade (West Mayo GHQ), 2d Battalion, contains a document headed: Roll Call for C. Coy. Newport Co. on 11th July 1921. (page 66). Among the 75 names on the list are:
Michael Kilroy T.D. Newport, Mayo. General.
Jack Kilroy. Carrickneady, Newort, Mayo.
John Kilroy. Newport, Mayo, in gaol. Staff. Captain.
Peter Kilroy. Bleachyard, Newport, Mayo. Special Inelligence, Battalion.
James Kilroy. Bleachyard, Newport, Mayo. U.S.A.
Another document on the same web page is headed: C. Coy. Newport. 1 July / 1922 \ Newport Co. Roll Call. (page 69) and includes the same four names, but there is no mention of in gaol after John Kilroy's name. and the lists are repeated at pages 73 and 76.
At least on action of John Kilroy at the beginning of the Irish War for Independence was mistakenly attributed to his bother, Michel Kilroy. See: Recollections of the Irish War by Darrell Figgis (Doubleday, Doran & Company 1928?), pages 144 –146 — Achill Island, April 25, 1916, immediately after the East Rising:
" '... there's terrible news. The driver of the mail says they've been fighting in Dublin.. Dawson Street is full of dead and wounded men. The Volunteers hold the Bank of Ireland, the General Post Ofice, and buildings all over Dublin. The soldiers are attacking them everywhere with machine-guns, and the slaughter is terrible.' ...
"After dark a gentle knock fell on our window, and two men softly entered the house. One was a native of the island, the other was Michael Kilroy, from Newport, on the mainland.* He had been sent from the men in the county to ask me to lead them in an attempt to help the men in Dublin by creating a diversion in the west. When he left after midnight, going across the bog, it was arranged that I should leave the island on Thursday. The roads were, of course, carefully guarded., It was therefore ageed that I should go out by Currach, as though by fishing, and be rowed to Achill Beg. From there I was to be rowed to Newport, to arrive there about ten at night, when the men from Castlebar, Westport, and Newport would be gathered to meet me. We hoped, then, to take the police barracks at those places by rapid strokes before dawn, and beyond that we did not trouble to inquire.
"We had no illusions about our plan. None of us expected to survive. Yet it was not in madness we made the plan, but as men who had no alternative. During Thursday morning, however, a message came from Michael Kilroy saying that the priest at Castlebar (where nearly all the rifles were on which we relied) had intervened and had refused to allow the men there to make any move. In face of this, he said, he himself had cancelled everything, and was sending me word at once to make no move. The priest was a wise man. Action taken merely to relieve one's own distress is nearly always wrong; and nothing we could have done would have been of the slightest use."
"* Michael Kilroy afterwards fought with courage during the time of the Black-and Tan campaign. In 1922 and 1923 he fought with the irregulars aainst the Free State; and as I write, he is now in gaol."
As part of his sworn testimony on January 19, 1935, in support of his application for a pension, Michael Kilroy said:
"I mentioned Mr. Darrel Figgis's book as a reference. The only mistake in that book is that it was not me but my brother who went to him. We are coach builders and the bunch of men in my house decided to construct an armoured car. Being so isolated as we were we thought it better to reach Dublin and thought it was unlikely that they would have another armoured car in Dublin. That was toward the end of the week and on the Friday morning we got very serious news re the gun boats. We decided to wait a while and every morning brought us worse news. My brother used to meet the train every morning to get the news. On Sunday evening we were brought the news from Castlebar to 'dump' arms. We had a job to get out all the stuff we had in the town without being seen. In my opinion that was more effective than those who got themselves imprisoned. I was able to be more useful afterwards."
Mary, the oldest daughter of John Kilroy and Margaret Leonard, married James O'Grady (1909–1955) in Newport on January 4, 1939. They moved to Chicago. Their oldest son, Donal O'Grady, who was born in County Galway, Ireland, in 1940 and now lives in Chicago, is the guru of Kilroy genealogy. He has furnished me with invaluable material on the history of the Kilroys.
(4) — Peter Kilroy (May 16, 1882September 13, 1941) married Kay (Catherine) Hoban in Cleveland, Ohio. Their five children were Matilda, Margaret, Charles, Virginia, and Edward. The 1901 census of Burrishoole parish lists Peter as age 18, living with his parents, and not married. (The Kilroy Family website lists, in the fourth generation, Peter Kilroy, who married Katherine Hoban, and died in Cleveland on September 13, 1941.) The Ellis Island website lists a Peter Kilroy, age 21, who arrived in New York from Queenstown on May 23, 1903, aboard the Campania; and Kate Hoban, age 20, who arrived in New York from Queenstown on May 13, 1906, aboard the Celtic. The manifest of the of the Campania lists Peter Kilroy's occupation as a farmer; he was single, could read and write; his nationality was Irish and his place of last residence was Newport; he had not been in the United States before; he was going to the home of his uncle, James Kilroy, at 569 Union Street, Cleveland+.
The manifest of the Celtic lists Kate Hoban's occupation as a dress-maker; she was single; she was going to the home of her sister, Mary Hoban, at 171 Pearl Street in Cleveland; she was travelling with a cousin, Mary O'Malley, also age 20, a servant, who had the same destination, the home of her cousin Mary Hoban in Cleveland at 171 Pearl Street.* The last place of residence of both Kate Hoban and Mary O'Malley, was Newport Ireland. The 1910 census of Cleveland (T-624, roll 1173, page 4B, line 58) lists Peter Kilroy, age 27, born in Ireland, single, who emigrated in 1903 and was naturalized, a carpenter (house), listed as a nephew in the home on Heath Avenue of his uncle, John Chambers.# There was a cousin of John Chambers in the same house: William Chambers, age 38, single, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1892, naturalized, a tinman in a rolling mill. John Chambers was listed as age 40 (probably should have been 42), born in Ireland, and had been married to his wife Margaret, age 40 (probably should be 42), born in Ohio (should be Ireland), for 15 years.^
*Traveling with Kate Hoban and Mary O'Malley, all from Newport and —all enroute to Cleveland— were: Annie McGlynn, age 25, a cook, enroute to 171 Pearl Street, Cleveland; Patrick McGlynn, age 19, a laborer, going to visit his sister at 171 Pearl Street; Nora O'Donnell, age 18, a servant, who was going to the home of her sister, Mrs. Cain, at 60 Alger Street, Cleveland (The 1900 census of Cleveland lists at 60 Alger Street a Michael Kane, age 40, born in March, 1860, in Ireland, married 17 years; his wife, Katherine (McLoughlin) Kane, age 39, born in Ireland in May of 1861, and five children, all born in Ohio); Agnes McCann, age 19, a servant, who was going to the home of her sister Mrs. O'Malley at 188 Washington Street, Cleveland; Nora Chambers, age 23, a servant, going to the home of her sister, Mrs. Dickson at 77 Taylor Street, Cleveland; and John Dickson, age 4, a child whose fare was paid by his aunt (apparently Nora Chambers), and who was going to the home of her brother at 77 Taylor Street.
+Here is a listing of the family from the 1900 census of Cleveland (ward 26), Cuyahoga county, Ohio, at 569 Union Street:
(1900) James Kilroy, age 44, born in Ireland in 1856, married 19 years, emigrated to the United States in 1881, naturalized, a tin worker, could read and write, owner of a home free of a mortgage (roll T623_1257, page 3A).
Mary Kilroy, age 44, born in Ireland in March, 1856; married 19 years; mother of ten children, 10 living; emigrated to the United States in 1881; could read and write.
Katie Kilroy, age 18, born in Delaware in February, 1882,
Thomas F Kilroy, age 16, born in Ohio in December, 1883, at school.
John H Kilroy, age 15, born in Ohio in January, 1885, at school.
Edward Kilroy, age 13, born in Ohio in September, 1886, at school.
Mary E Kilroy, age 12, born in Ohio in January, 1888, at school.
Maggie Kilroy, age 10, born in Ohio in January, 1890, at school.
Joseph Kilroy, age 8, born in Ohio in September, 1891, at school.
Willie Kilroy. age 5, born in Ohio in September , 1894.
Ignatius Kilroy. age 2, born in Ohio in January, 1898.
Theresa G Kilroy, age 1 month, born in Ohio in May, 1900.
The 1910 census of Cleveland (roll 1173, page 15l) lists a James Kilroy (indexed by Ancestry.com as Kelroy) at 8743 Union Avenue. He was 52 years old, born in Ireland, and had been married 29 years; he had emigrated in 1881 and had been naturalized; he was a house builder; with him was his wife, Mary Kilroy (Mary Chambers), age 51, born in Ireland, who had also immigrated in 1881, mother of 11 children, all of whom were living, and 9 of whom were listed as living at home. As mentioned above, James Kilroy, the uncle of Peter Kilroy, had married Mary Chambers.
Here is a listing of the family from the 1920 census of Cleveland (ward 16), Cuyahoga county, Ohio, at 9407 Ramona Boulevard:
(1920) James Kilroy, age 62, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1880, naturalized in 1890, a carpenter on buildings (T-625, roll 1368, page 12B, line 65).
Mary Kilroy, age 62, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1880, naturalized in 1890. [Mary Chambers]
John Kilroy, age 34, single, born in Ohio, a bailiff at the court house.
Edward A Kilroy, age 32, single, born in Ohio, a salesman for a construction company.
Joseph Kilroy, age 29, single, born in Ohio, a clerk for Multigraph Company.
Ignatius Kilroy, age 21, single, born in Ohio, a commercial salesman—house.
Mary Mildred Kilroy, age 19, single, born in Ohio, file clerk in a bank.
Madeline Kilroy, age 17, single, born in Ohio, no occupation.
Here is a listing of the family from the 1930 census of Cleveland in a home at 9407 Ramona Avenue owned by James Kilroy:
(1930) James Kilroy (head), age 74, widower, born in South Ireland, emigrated in 1881, naturalized, no occupation.
John H. Kilroy (son), age 45, single, born in Ohio, attorney working in the structural steel industry.
Charles R. Hubbard (son-in-law), age 43, married at age 29, born in Connecticut, an electrician in the construction industry.
Joseph R. Kilroy (son), age 38, single, born in Ohio, accountant for a multigraph company.
Margaret Hubbard (daughter), age 40, married at age 26, born in Ohio, no occupation.
Madeline Travis (daughter), age 27, married at age 24, born in Ohio, no occupation.
[The manifest of the Lucania when it arrived in New York from Queenstown and Liverpool on September 22, 1906, listed these two Kilroys with a destination of 569 Union Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio: James Kilroy, age 45, married, a Boss. Roller, born in Ireland, a non-immigrant alien, of the Irish race, with a last residence of USA Newport (?), who had spent 25 years in Cleveland, Ohio, and who had last been there in 1906; traveling with James Kilroy, age 11, single, a child, US born, with the same destination, whose fare had been paid by his father. On the same ship, but on a different page of the manifest, was Margaret Kilroy, age 19, single, whose last residence was Newport, Ireland, and whose destination was the home of her uncle, James Kilroy, at 669 Union Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio. (This was probably the Margaret Kilroy (June 13, 1886 - December 12, 1917) who married Owen J. Lavelle (1884-1958) in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, on February 28, 1911; died in Cleveland on December 12, 1917; and is buried there in Calvary Cemetery. Find A Grave Memorial #19172799. The 1920 census of Cleveland, Ohio, listed Owen Lavelle, age 34, a widower, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1908, a furnace man, in the steel industry, with two children: John Lavelle, age 7, and Madelaine Lavelle, age 5. ) Owen John Lavelle was born in county Mayo on January 18, 1884, according to his World War I draft card filled out in Cleveland on September 12, 1018, at which time Margaret had apparently had died. Owen married again - to Mary Corrigan. His birth was recorded in the registration district of Newport, County Mayo. Ireland, Civil Registration Births Index, 1864-1958, on ancestry.com. He died in Cleveland in August of 1958 and is buried there in Calvary Cemetery. Find A Grave Memorial #19169991.)]
[The manifest of the Campania that arrived in New York from Queenstown on September 10, 1910, listed John Kilroy, age 30, single, a carpenter, whose last residence was Newport, and whose father was John Kilroy of Bleachyard, Newport, county Mayo, Ireland, and whose destination was the home of his uncle, James Kilroy, at 8743 Union Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio. John was born in Newport.]
[The manifest of the Celtic that arrived in New York on July 28, 1921, listed Julia Kilroy, age 25, single, a domestic, whose mother was Bridget Kilroy of Bleachyard, Newport, county Mayo, born in Bleachyard, on the way to visit her brother, John Kilroy, at 3592 East 149th Street, Cleveland, Ohio.]
#This is probably the John Chambers mentioned in Michael Kilroy's The Chambers Family History at page 6. "John Chambers, my uncle, went to America. He married one of the Kilroy’s of Carrickaneady. They were first cousins and had a family." Kilroy Genealogies list a John Chambers born in 1869 in Millrace, Furnace, the son of Tom Chambers (1833–1896, born in Glen na Bo) and Celia (ogie) McNulty. John's older sister was Mary Chambers (1857–1929), who married Jimmie Kilroy, the son of Michael Kilroy and Bridget Higgins, and died in Cleveland, Ohio on June 2, 1929. The Kilroy Family Tree states that John Chambers married Margaret Kilroy who was born in Carrickaneady in 1867 to Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers, and that John and Margaret were married in Newport on April 3, 1895. (The place of marriage was probably Cleveland, Ohio. Margaret Kilroy Chambers emigrated to the United states in 1887 and John Chambers emigrated in 1891, according to the 1900 census of Cleveland, below.) Their two sons were named Thomas Chambers and John Francis Chambers. See: The Chambers Family Page. Another Chambers Family page says that the John Chambers who married Margaret Kilroy was born in Newport, Ireland, on March 17, 1870.
^The 1900 census of Cleveland (roll 1257, page 142) lists John Chambers at #18 [listed next to #57] Wageman Street: age 32, born in Ireland in March of 1868, married 5 years, emigrated in 1891, 9 years in the United States, a doubler; with his wife, Maggie, age 32, born in Ireland in August of 1867, emigrated in 1887, 13 years in the United States, mother of 2 children, both living; and their 2 children: Thomas P. Chambers, age 4, born in Ohio in February , 1896; and John F. Chambers, age 1 month, born in May , 1900, in Ohio. [John Chambers is listed as a "helper" at 55 Wageman Street in the 1900 Cleveland City Directory. James Kilroy is listed as a doubler residing at 57 Wageman Street in the 1900 Cleveland City Directory.] Both these children are also listed in the 1910 census of Cleveland. John Chambers, age 50, born in Ireland is listed as a widower in the 1920 census of Cleveland, working as a lineman for an illuminating company.
The 1910 census of Cleveland (ward 18), Cuyahoga county, Ohio, lists Peter Kilroy, age 27, single, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1903, naturalized, a house carpenter, a nephew, in the home of John and Margaret Chambers, both age 40 and married 15 years. John Chambers was born in Ireland, emigrated in 1891, owner of his home at 9704 Heath Avenue subject to a mortgage, with no occupation listed. Margaret Chambers was born in Ohio (should be Ireland), to parents born in Ireland, and the mother of two children, both living. Their two sons living in the household, both born in Ohio, were Thomas P. Chambers, age 14, and John F. Chambers, age 9. Also living in the household was a cousin, William Chambers, age 38, born in Ireland, single, who had emigrated in 1892, was a naturalized citizen of the United States, and who was employed as a tinman in a rolling mill (roll T624_1173, page 4B).
Peter Kilroy registered for the World War I draft in Cleveland on Sepember 12, 1918. He listed his wife as Catherine Kilroy, their address as 794 (?) Lamdon Road, Cleveland; his age as 36; his birth date as May 16, 1882; his occupation as a self-employed house builder; his height as tall, his build as medium, his hair color as dark brown, and his eyes as blue. World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917–1918 on Ancestry.com.
The 1920 census of East Cleveland (ward 3), Cuyahoga county, Ohio, lists the family of Peter Kilroy at 14418 Scioto Avenue:
(1920) Peter Kilroy, age 37, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1904, naturalized in 1909, a carpenter (houses), owner of a home subject to a mortgage (T-625, roll 1374, page 6B (or 119), line 76).
Catherine A. Kilroy, age 32, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1906, naturalized in 1910 [Catherine Hoban].
Matildah (sic) M. Kilroy, age 8, born in Ohio. [In the 1930 census of Cleveland, Cuyahoga county, Ohio, Matilda M. Kilroy, age 18, single, born in Ohio to parents born in the Irish Free State, is listed as an "inmate" of the school of nursing at St. Vincent's Charity Hospital on Central Avenue at East 22nd. Her position is described as "pupil nurse—hospital" (roll 1768, page 2B, line 79).]
Margaret E. Kilroy, age 4 years, 1 month, born in Ohio.
Virginia H. Kilroy, age 1 year, 11 months, born in Ohio.
(5) — Michael Kilroy [General] (September 14, 1884December, 23, 1962), married Nan (Anne) Leonard (sister of Mag Leonard who married Michael's brother John Kilroy) of Crossmolina. Their children were Paddy (Patrick, 19151991, m. Kathleen Mulchrone), Mary (or Marsy, born December 3, 1917, in Newport, m. George Reid), Ethna, Peadar (m. Anne Cox in 1959 in Newport), Joe (Michael Joseph, born 1925, moved to Chicago, m. Marie Spellman on May 28, 1926, in Chicago*), Jim (Edward James), moved to Chicago, m. Kathleen Lyons), and Maeve. I did not find him in the 1901 census. (The Kilroy Family website lists, in the fourth generation, Michael Kilroy who married Nan Leonard and had seven children.)
*Joe Kilroy died in Chicago on July 5, 2013. Here is an obituary published in the Mayo news of September 3, 2013. Here is an obituary published in the Chicago Sun Times on July 6, 2013.
Michael Kilroy died on December 23, 1962, and is buried at Burrishoole Abbey. Eamon de Valera, president of Ireland, attended the funeral of Michael Kilroy in Newport, county Mayo, on December 26, 1962. Here is the obituary from page 1 of The Mayo News of Saturday, December 29, 1962:
Maj. Gen. Michael Kilroy Dies
MAJ. GENERAL MICHAEL KILROY, who died yesterday (sic—he had died on the previous Sunday morning), aged 78, at his home in Newport, Co. Mayo, was O. C. of the 4th Western Division of the IRA during the War of Independence and was regarded as one of the finest stgrategists of his time.
He stood for the Dail elections in South Mayo in 1923 and was elected with Sinn Fein. But he did not take his seat in the Dail until 1927 when he entered with Fianna Fail the year after the formation of the party. He was a deputy until 1937.
During his public life he was chairman of Mayo Co. Council and until his death was a member of the Hospitals' Commission.
In 1923, he was interned in Kilmainham and while there took part in a 40-day hunger strike. The following year he was interned in the Curragh but escaped after four months.
His ability as a tactician was evident from his plans for engagements such as the Skirdagh, Carrowkennedy and Kilmeena ambushes against the Black and Tans in Co. Mayo.
His fighting column had a great reputation and under his command were such figures as the late Dr. J. A. Madden, who had also been a member of the Dail; Comdt. Sean Gibbons, a solicitor now in Dublin; Comdt. Eamon Moan, ex T-D; Comdt. Willie Malone; Comdt. Broddie Malone; Comdt. Tom Kitterick, Westport, the late Jim Rushe and the late Joe Ring.
Even before the rising he had been training in I.R.A. camps, and had quickly built a reputation as an excellent soldier.
He was also noted during his political life as the proposer of Mr. de Valera, now the President, as president of the Executive Council in 1932.
He is survived by three daughters, Sister Margaret Joseph, Sisters of Charity, Choma, Northern Rhodesia; Dr. Maeve Kilroy, and Mrs. Margaret Reid; sons Patric, Peadar, who is Commandant of the F.C.A. in Westport, Joe, Jim and Dominick, all in the U.S.: brothers John, Newport, and Patrick, Australia and sisters, Mrs. Matilda McDonnell, Galway, and Mrs. Nancy Whelton, Texas. The remains were removed to the St. Patrick's Church and the funeral will take place to Burrishoole Cemetery on Wednesday (actually, the previous Wednesday, December 26).
Comdt. Eamon Moane who served under Maj. Gen. Kilroy during the War of Independence said he was a wonderful soldier, officer and comrade.
"He would have achieved the highest rank in any army with his outstanding ability. In later years when he became a public figure he did not lose any of the qualities he displayed in his earlier years. His sincerity is well known to all. He was one of the finest men of his generation."
(6) — Patrick "Packie" Kilroy (December 27, 1886May, 1964) married Catherine (Kate) Igoe of Carnalow and went to Melbourne, Australia. Beginning in 1917, the electoral register for the subdivision of Newport, Division of Melbourne, Australia lists Patrick Kilroy, car builder, and Catherine Kilroy, housewife, at 21 Wood Street. Their children were Edward (m. Evelyn Cavalier), Matilda (m. George Sandilands), Teresa (m. Jeremy McCarthy), Kitty (m. William Igoe*), Virginia (Valma) (m. Noel Hughes), and Patricia (m. Art Sommers). Another source says he married Catherine Joyce on April 3, 1914, in Newport (Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson, page 40). The 1901 census shows Patrick, age 14, a scholar, living with his parents. Kate Igoe died in 1956. Australian Electoral Rolls, 1903–1954, on Ancestry.com, shows Patrick Kilroy, carpenter, and Catherine Kilroy, housewife, in the subdivision of Newport, division of Melbourne Ports, electoral division of Gellebrand, state of Victoria, Australia, in 1919 through 1954, Here is the listing for 1949: at 36 William Street, Patrick Kilroy, carpenter; Catherine Kilroy, home duties; Catherine Veronica (Kitty*) Kilroy, dressmaker; at 72 River Street, Edward Kilroy, turner; Evelyn Jane (Cavalier) Kilroy, home duties. Edward was with Patrick and Catherine at 36 William Street in 1943. Patrick Kilroy died on May 23, 1964, aged 77 years. Catherine Kilroy died on January 1, 1956, aged 66 years. There is a photograph of their gravestone on ancestry.com. that was posted by eakilroy of Willowick Lake Ohio USA.
*In 1954, William Igoe, process worker, was living with Catherine Veronica Igo at 10 Milton Street, Footscray North, Maribyrnong, Victoria, Austalia, according to Australian Electoral Rolls, 1903–1954 on Ancestry.com.
(7) — Dominick Kilroy (February 5, 18901919), who died without marrying, in Derrylahan (Derryloughan More), at about the age of 29 in 1919. The 1901 census shows Dominick, age 11, a scholar, living with his parents. (Family Search lists a Dominick Kilroy born to Edward Kilroy and Matilda or Tillie Kilroy in Derrylahan, county Mayo, in about 1890, who died on February 5, 1967, while residing on Quay Road, Newport, Ireland, and who is buried at Burrishoole, Mayo, Ireland. The record was submitted after 1991 by a member of the LDS Church. The obituary of Major General Michael Kilroy in 1962 says that his brother Dominick was in the United States.)
(8) — Margaret (Maggie) Kilroy (baptized March 27, 18931936), who married Thomas McRory (McCrory) of northeast Omagh, county Tyrone (see below). Their children were Mary, Philomena, and Margaret (who died in 1936). (Donal O'Grady lists only one child, Mary Rose McCrory, who became a nun.) The 1901 census shows Maggie Kilroy, age 8, a scholar, living with her parents. The Kilroy Family Tree on ancestry.com states that Thomas McCrory was born in June of 1897 in Omagh, Tyrone, Northern Ireland, and that he married Margaret Kilroy in June, 1827. The record of their marriage is in the Westport Registration District. (Ireland, Civil Registration Marriages Index, 1845–1958, vol. 4, p. 216, FHL film number 101576). Their daughter, Margaret McCrory was born in 1928 and died in 1936, the same year as her mother. (A Thomas McRory died in County Armagh on April 19, 1886. On September 30, 1886. Letters of Administration (with the Will annexed) of the personal estate of Thomas M'Rory (otherwise M'Crory) late of Tarsan, Seagoe, County Armagh, labourer, who died 19 April 1886 at same place were granted at Armagh to Mary M'Rory of Tarsan Seagoe Widow of Testator and a Legatee. PRONI Will Calendars. He was probably a relative, perhaps an uncle, of the Thomas McRory who married Maggie Kilroy.) Thomas McRory helped Michael Kilroy to "escape" from internment at Hare Park Camp, Curragh, Kildare, on May 11, 1924. In an interview with Ernie O'Mally around 1950, Jack Feehan had this to say about Thomas McRory:
"PAs. (Members of Póilini Airm, the Free Stater police force). Michael knew a PA who later became his brother-in-law, Paddy McGlory (Thomas McRory). I think he left the place along with Michel. As far as I know the PA walked to the gate with him and he let him off. He is a Donegal (should be Tyrone) man and he was on the run in Newport, so he must have left the staters shortly after that. They fixed it up. Three years later he married Michael's sister and when she died (in 1936) he joined the guard. The last place I heard he was in Ballyshannon (in south Donegal). ...
"Now that McGlory was taking letters out, and was bringing them in, I expect, for you were court-martialled by the camp staff if you were caught giving a letter to a PA, for we needed that stuff coming in more than going out." The Men Will Talk to Me: Galway Inverviews by Ernie O'Malley (Mercier Press 2013), pages 180–181.
(9) — Matilda (Tillie) Kilroy (baptized April 17, 18951984), who married Peter J. McDonnell of Leenane, county Galway, on May 17, 1921. The marriage took place while Peter McDonnell was active in combat operations as part of the I. R. A. (see below). Their children were Maeve (m. Pat Kelly), Joe, Peadar, Maureen, Ethna (whom we visited in Galway), Peggy, and Patrick (m. King). (O'Grady does not list Maureen.) The 1901 census shows Matilda, age 6, a scholar, living with her parents. There was another son, Eamonn or Edward, who married Mary King of county Kerry.
General Michael Kilroy describes the marriage of his daughter Tillie as follows:
On the day of the 17th May, 1921, the Brigadier of West Connemara, P.J. McDonnell, and his Quartermaster, Jack Feehan, who was a native of Kilmeena parish, arrived in Kilmeena. P.J. McDonnell got married to my sister, Tillie, on that day. They had a wedding party in Mrs. Feehan's, Rossow. On their arrival from Connemara in our parish very late on the night of the 16th May, they called in to Owney Kean's, Cuilmore, to discover they had only missed a raid by the Tans and police from Newport.
The police gave Owen a terrible beating and prodding with a shotgun. ...
... McDonnell was given a lively start for his honeymoon. The unceasing rattle of gunfire for hours was, I am confident, a most undesirable atmosphere. Such a condition, I am sure, would have a depressing effect on the most ardent spirited. The gunfire was only across the hill, half a mile away as the crow flies. P.J. McDonnell and Jack Feehan did not leave Derrylahan until after the Kilroy women and children from Newport arrived there. When they set out for West Connemara, they had the first mile of their journey illuminated by the blaze of the timber shops and houses at Newport.
Statement by Michael Kilroy, Document No. W.S. 1,162 in the files of Bureau of Military History, 1913–21 (part II, pages 15–16 and 20).
Here is part of an email of October 19, 2006, from Sean McDonnell of Ireland:
"Subect: my grandmother "Tilly" McDonnell nee Kilroy
"Thank you for an interesting read on a lot of my family history that I had no idea of. That was my grandmother Tilly who married Peter J. McDonnell of Leenane.
"One of their children Eamonn (Edward) not listed was my father; born sixth of April 1927 to 2nd August 1986. Eamonn my dad married Mary nee King of Brosna, Co. Kerry on April 6th 1953 and they had 3 children, Sean 15/5/54 (me), Diarmuid 8/1/1959 and Una 20/9/1966.
"I have many happy memories of holidays spent in 'Derrylahan' Newcastle, Galway with my grandparents and their friends who often called when in Galway from Leenane and Newport."
Here is are excerpts from Connemara becomes battlefield in Tan War by Ronnie Gorman in The Galway Advertiser of March 28, 2013:
Born in Leenane, Co Galway, 29-year-old Petie, or PJ, McDonnell, came from a strong nationalist family. He worked as a coach builder with Kilroys of Newport, and had joined the Irish Volunteers in 1914. He was highly regarded by IRA headquarters.
By the first week of March 1921 McDonnell had 18 armed men in his column. The difference now was that the IRA were no longer a hidden force, but living in the open, dependent on safe houses for shelter and food, determined to square up to the British forces, which included the RIC.
By now, however, further violence in County Galway had ratcheted up the tension to almost breaking point. On October 15 1920, the Barna schoolteacher, Patrick Joyce, was taken from his home and shot. He had written a letter to Dublin Castle outlining Sinn Féin activities in the area. His letter was intercepted and passed on to the IRA. ...
'Two for one'
Petie McDonnell was not a boastful man, and rarely discussed afterwards his role in the War for Independence and the Civil War. However, apart from his matter of fact statements recorded in the Bureau of Military History, he spoke openly to one of the most enigmatic fighters in that war, Ernie O'Malley.***
One of the Connemara Brigade's first missions was to follow up on the hanging of Tommy Whelan, an innocent young man from Sky Road, Clifden, wrongfully accused of being part of Michael Collins' ruthless wipeout of British spies on so-called Bloody Sunday, November 21 1920. Tommy Whelan was executed March 14 1921; and now, two days later, the IRA had vowed that it would revenge such executions 'two for one'.
Arriving in Clifden on that fateful evening, McDonnell told O'Malley that, having left some men covering the RIC station, he and five others (Jack Feehan, Gerald Bartley, Dick Joyce, Michael Joyce, and Peter Wallace ) walked towards the RIC men standing outside Ed King's corner (now EJ Kings ). The men all had side arms. The RIC constables Reynolds and Sweeney saw them coming. “One of them made a dive for his gun as I passed and we wheeled and opened up. They were shot.”
Quickly a rifle and a revolver, 50 rounds of ammunition belts and pouches were removed. On their way out of the town a few men went to Lydon's for bread and butter. They were ravenous..
Captain Peter McDonnell of Leenane Company was appointed Brigade Commandant of the West Connemara Brigade of the I. R. A. when it was organized in late 1920. See the Statement of William King, Intelligence Officer, Leenane Company Irish Volunteers, County Galway, 1917–1921, Bureau of Military History Document W.S. 1,381, page 8. A flying column was established in January of 1921. Peter McDonnell was appointed Brigade Commandant and Column Commander:
All those assembled were anxious to join the active service unit, but many of those present had to be told that they could not be accepted owing to shortage of arms and ammunition. There were only about eleven or twelve rifles, available at the time. They were of mixed patterns and included Lee Enfield, Winchester, Springfield, Martini single shot and Howth. There were about twelve revolvers and the same number of shotguns About this time, too, a sum of about two hundred pounds was collected in the brigade area for the purchase of arms. (page 9)
See also the Statement of Martin Conneely, Adjutant, West Connemara Brigade, I. R. A., Bureau of Military History Documenty W.S. 1,611.
Before concluding this statement, I would like to pay a. tribute to P.J. McDonnell, Bde. 0/C and Column Commander, for his untiring efforts from early l9l4 onwards in the fight for freedom. It was he who fostered, organised and, to a great extent on his own, kept the national movement going in West Connemara. Although principally concerned with the Volunteers and later With the I.R.A., that did not prevent him from playing his part in other spheres of national concern, it was due to him and men of his calibre that the I.R.A. became the powerful and well organised army that it was, and which compelled England to negotiate for a Truce in July, 1921. (page 23)
On May 4, 1957, Peter McDonnell signed an 84 page Statement By Witness for the Bureau of Military History, Document No. W.S 1, 612:
In September 1915, Michael kilroy, Newport Mayo and I attended at the Munster Volunteer Training Camp, in the Galtees. (page 3)
I might also mention that I accompanied Michael Kilroy to Dublin in November 1917, as he expected to be able to get delivery of some rifles for the Newport Company, the cash for which had been forwarded some time previously. We availed of an excursion, run in connection with a replay of an All-Ireland football Final between Wexford and Kerry. (patge 9)
Early in 1920 it had been arranged that my marriage to Miss Matilda Kilroy sister to Michael Kilroy would take place in the first week of May 1921. As matters turned out, it could not conveniently take place just then, but I was determined that it would take place as near as possible to the date fixed, and after this first round-up seemed to be a good time to take a week off to get it done ... The next two days were taken up in making arrangements for the marriage. We expected to be married in the Newport Church, but the P.P. there would not agree as it was within a stone's throw of the police barracks, so he arranged with the P.P., Kilmeena, to perform the ceremony in Kilmeena Church and we were married there with Nuptial Mass at 6 a.m. on 17th May 1921. The bridegroom and best man were adorned with two .45's. and a grenade. The wedding breakfast was partaken of in Feehan's, and afterwards Mrs. McDonnell and friends returned to Derrylahan where Jack Feehan and I were to join them that night. (pages 70–72)
They very nearly had an important capture at Glenummera near Doolòugh. Michael Kilroy, 0/C. West Mayo and three of his officers were there on their way to get in touch with us, but we knew nothing about it. They were evading a round-up that started at Ballina and were moving south to meet up with the one starting at the Killary. They thought they were outside the area of the round-up when they arrived there. As it was, apparently they got the shortest possible notice and, being in a strange district, they had nowhere to go except to the mountain and were lucky enough to find what they considered a good place under the side of a big rock in a cluster'. They could hear the men talking as they approached their position and they actually walked around at least two sides of the rock they were under.
They were billeted less than a mile from us the previous night, but we did not know there was anybody but ourselves in the area. They stayed on there after the military had moved on and got in touch with me a day or so later. We had at this time moved to Glanagimla, a village about a mile from Leenane. We had come there as a result of hearing that the Auxies were likely to return by Leenane. The road rises steeply for about three quarters of a mile above Leenane on the Galway road, with the mountain over, and we had a notion that we might make good use of the few rounds of ammunition in our possession. We got Michael and his friends to join us in Glanagimla and while there we actually saw the lorries of Auxies returning from Mayo and going on into Leenane. About an hour afterwards, the Vice Commandant arrived at our billets accompanied by a stranger whom he introduced to me. I have forgotten his name. The stranger informed me that he was a courier from G.H.Q. and showed his credentials. lie then gave me a communication informing me that a Truce was being declared as from 12 o'clock noon, July 11th. (pages 81–82)
Peter McDonnell and Michael Kilroy are both prominently mentioned in Willie Sammon's The War of Independence and Civil War in Newport; for example:
At this time, Newport town was isolated, as the bridges at Rossow and Buckfield road and rail were blown up, as were the bridges on the Castlebar Road, Derryloughan and Glenhest. Supplies were very low in the area. Kilroy sent Commandant Joe Baker and a number of men out to the islands. They captured a boat containing 300 tons of flour destined for Westport. They brought it to Newport where it was distributed among the people. On October 26th, a fully equipped IRA active service unit, comprising of 4 Ford cars, 3 lorries and 39 cyclists, with the armoured car, left Newport. They made their way to Clifden which had a large force of soldiers. The battle for Clifden lasted for eight and a half hours, before the garrison surrendered. The IRA where under the command of Peter J McDonnell and Jack Feehan, as Michael Kilroy was attending a meeting of the IRA executive in the Nire Valley in Waterford.
For more on Peter McDonnell, see The Irish War of Independence by Michael Hopkinson, pages 137–138.
The gravestone of Peter McDonnell in the Leanane Graveyard (plot 23) (Breenaun Cemetery, Kimilkin) reads as follows:
In Loving Memory of
CAPT. PETER J. McDONNELL
WHO DIED ON MARCH 6. 1967
AGED 75 YEARS.
HIS WIFE TILLY
DIED 26 JULY 1984
AGED 89 YEARS.
(10) — Anne (Nancy) Kilroy (19001986) (Teel's mother), who was born in Newport, Ireland, on February 3, 1900. Sponsors at her baptism in the Newport chapel were Thomas Chambers and Mary Chambers. The 1901 census of Derryloughan More, Newport East, Burrishoole Parish, Mayo, shows Anne Kilroy, age 1, the youngest of nine children, living with her parents.She married Patrick Whelton on June 26, 1929, in Cleveland, Ohio. They made their home in Galveston, Texas. Their children were Edward, Maurice, Ellen, Matilda (Teel—my wife), Rose Marie (who Teel says knocked her off her throne as the cute baby in the family), and Patrick. Nancy Kilroy Whelton died in Galveston, Texas on October 25, 1986 (see the section below under the heading: Patrick Whelton and Anne (Nancy) Kilroy).
Here are excerpts from The Chambers Family History, written by Michael Chambers in 1978, pages 19–22 (with some repetition of shorter excerpts set out earlier in this section):
"Long Jim Kilroy lived in the old home. The other brother John lived quite near. Jim and John were married to two sisters named Keane from Gortaworla, a village quite near.
"Their sister Tilly Kilroy was married to Eddie Kilroy and they lived in Derrylahan about a half a mile from Newport on the East side of the Mulranny road.
"Eddie Kilroy was born in Furnace and was a brother to Jimmy Kilroy who was married to Mary Chambers my aunt. ... (see the excerpt below from page 2)
"Michael Kilroy the TD was son to Eddie and Tilly of Derrylahan .
"Long Jim Kilroy had two sons and a daughter. His daughter [Margaret] was married to a Martin Harte of Glenhest. I know they had a family .
"Jim Kilroy junior was married to Annie Chambers from Glen Laure near Skirdagh. She died a young woman and left a family. Jim and Annie were no relations.
"Jim's other brother was named Martin. He worked in England and Dublin in his youth. I lost touch with Martin.
"John Kilroy [who married Honor Keane] had 2 sons and 2 daughters. One daughter [Margaret] married Jim McHugh who had a farm nearby. They had a family. Jim died about 3 years ago. Jim McHugh was a nephew to Michael McManamon. Michael was a Glenhest man and he was married to Mary Kilroy who was a daughter to Eddie and Tilly of Derrylahan. John Kilroy's second daughter married a man named Griffen from Gortaworla. Griffen's father was a stranger but he was married to a Keane girl from Gortawarla. [Gortawarla is a townland 3 kilometers south of Newport in Kilmeena parish. Kilmeena parish is immediately south of Burrishoole parish.] There were quite a few Keane families in Gortawarla 50 years ago. I don't think any of John Kilroy's sons got married, if they did they were old.
"Tillie and Eddie Kilroy of Derrylahan. Their family.
"Michael (TD) and John married two sisters named Leonard from near Lahardane* [in the Civil and Roman Catholic parish of Addergoole]. They both had large families. Dominick died young. Paddy went to America. [Australia?]. (Please see page 6 regards John Chambers and Mary Kilroy (first cousins) were married and lived in America.)
[*"Lahardane, alias Lahardaun (Leathardan), is a picturesque village situated west of Lough Conn under the shadow of Nephin. Archbishop John Mac Hale of Tuam (1791-1881) was born in the nearby townland of Tobernaveen. There is a monument in the village in memory of Fr. James Conroy, the parish priest of Addergoole, who was hanged in Castlebar for assisting the French in 1798." The civil parish of Addergoole contains the southern part of the western shore of Lough Conn, and is immediately north of the parish of Aglish, which contains the town of Castlebar, and the parish of Turlough, which contains Foxford. Fourteen men and women from the parish of Addergoole were aboard the Titanic when it sank in April of 1912. Only three survived. See the website of the Addergoole Titanic Society and my page Sinking of the Titanic—James and George McGough Man Lifeboats.
[Griffith's Valuation of the parish of Addergoole listed Catherine Leonard and Matthew Leonard in the townland of Cum, and Patrick Leonard in the townland of Dervin. I record this information because John McGough (sometimes McGoff) and Bridget Leonard were the parents of William McGoff who was born in county Mayo on April 10, 1870; and Mary McGough, who was born in county Mayo on April 21, 1877. See my page: McGoughs in County Mayo. Could this be another connection between the Kilroys and McGoughs? ]
"Bridget Kilroy, their sister, married Pat McNeela my uncle of Ballycroy. They had four daughters and 5 sons. Michael one of the sons is married in the old home and has a family. Bridget Kilroy (Mrs McNeela) was daughter to Eddie and Tilly of Derrylahan.
"Mary Kilroy married Michael McManamon . They had 3 daughters and one son Joe. Joe is married and has a family. He lives in Derrylahan now for about 40 years. Joe married Tom McManamon's daughter from Graffy near Skirdagh. There is Upper Skirdagh, Skirdagh and Lower Skirdagh.
"Maggie Kilroy of Derrylahan was married to Tom McRory. He was a stranger. They lived in Derrylahan for some time. They had one daughter and Maggie died shortly after. Tom McRory left Derrylahan then. (and joined the Gardai in 1933). He was in the Irish Army and was responsible for the escape of Michael Kilroy from the Glass House Prison in the Curragh in 1922/23. He deserted from the army and came to Newport with Michael Kilroy and was on the run. He was a native of Belfast and was a member of the Truce IRA under Frank Aiken who was S.O.C.. He joined Michael Kilroy's column who were then at Sheeaun Lodge, Ballycroy, which was a training camp for the IRA).
Here is another excerpt from Michael Chambers' narrative, page 2:
"Mary Chambers (my aunt) married Jimmy Kilroy of Furnace and went to America about 100 years ago. They had 12 children and were well to do. Jimmy Kilroy was uncle to Michael Kilroy of Newport who was a TD. My Aunt Mary died in America over 50 years ago and Jimmy Kilroy lived to be a very old man ."
Ancestors of Edward "Ned" Kilroy
According to information furnished me by the guru of Kilroy genealogy, Donal O'Grady of Chicago, and the Kilroy Family website, Edward "Ned" Kilroy's parents were Michael (Mickey) Kilroy, who died in Ireland on March 16, 1892, and Bridget Higgins, who died in Ireland on July 29, 1889. (The website shows their dates of death as a day later than their gravestone.) Their gravestone, in the Burrishoole Abbey cemetery, about three kilometers west of Newport, reads as follows:
PRAY FOR THE SOUL
WHO DIED JULY 29TH 1889
AGED 71 YEARS
ALSO HER HUSBAND
DIED MARCH 16TH 1892
AGED 86 YEARS
ERECTED BY THEIR SON JAMES
Michael Kilroy and Bridget Higgins Kilroy had these children:
3 i. John Kilroy married Bridget O'Boyle. Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson, page 40), lists the children of John Kilroy and Bridget O'Boyle of Skerdagh as: Patrick Kilroy, born on February 21, 1882; John Kilroy, born April 22, 1883; and Margaret Kilroy, born May 17, 1884*. In the 1901 census of the parish of Burrishoole, John (a farmer, age 67) and Bridget (age 44), and their eight children, ranging in age from 26 to 7, are listed as living in Bleachyard, Newport East: Patrick, age 26; John, age 20; Bridget, age 18; Margaret, age 16; Peter, age 14; Michael, age 12; Julia, age 9; and James, age 7. A son, Martin Kilroy, was born on November 11, 1866, to John Kilroy and Bridget O'Boyle of Lettermaghra. (County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson). Bleachyard is 1.8 km northeast of Newport according to Google maps.
*Margaret Kilroy, age 19, of Newport, arrived in New York on September 22, 1906, aboard the Lucania from Queenstown. to visit her uncle, James Kilroy, at 509 Union Avenue, Cleveland .
4 ii. Edward (Ned) Kilroy married Matilda (Tillie) Kilroy in 1873; died June 7, 1902 ? at age 60. [My wife's grandparents] The IGI lists the birth of Edward Kilroy to Michael Kilroy and Bridget Higgins in about 1842 in Derrylahan, county Mayo, Ireland.
5 iii. Patrick Kilroy, married and had five children: Dominick, Bridget "Agnes," Mary, Rose, and Michael.
6 iv. James Kilroy (October 10, 1856January 22, 1944) (On April 10, 1881, married Mary Chambers (who lived March 17, 1857 to June 2, 1929) in Cleveland [more likely Ireland — the marriage of James Kilroy and Mary Chambers is registered in the district of Newport, Mayo (volume 4, page 183, FHL film number 101254), in the second quarter of 1881. Ireland, Civil Registration Marriages Index, 1845–1958, on ancestry.com]. [James Kilroy is listed as a doubler residing at 57 Wageman Street in the 1900 Cleveland City Directory.]
Mary Chambers, born March 17, 1857 in Ireland, died June 2 1929, in Cleveland, Ohio. She married James Kilroy, son of Michael (Mickey) Kilroy & Bridget Higgins, on April 10, 1881, in Furnace, county Mayo, Ireland. James was born on October 10, 1856, in Furnace, county Mayo, Ireland, and died on January 22, 1944, in Stuart, Florida. They had eleven children.
Michael Chambers (born in Furnace on June 30, 1916), mentions James Kilroy in The Chambers Family History (on the link, click on "Download Journal written by Michael Chambers.") that he wrote in 1978, page 2:
"Mary Chambers (my aunt) married Jimmy Kilroy of Furnace and went to America about 100 years ago. They had 12 children and were well to do. Jimmy Kilroy was uncle to Michael Kilroy of Newport who was a TD. My Aunt Mary died in America over 50 years ago and Jimmy Kilroy lived to be a very old man ."
The 1900 census of Cleveland township, Cleveland, Ohio (26th Ward, Union Street), shows James Kilroy as the head of his family, born in 1856, age 44, married 19 years, native of Ireland, who emigrated to the US in 1881, naturalized, a tin worker, literate, who owned his home free and clear. Living with him was his wife, Mary, born in Ireland in March of 1856, age 44, mother of ten children, all of whom were living, who had also emigrated to the US in 1881. Living with them were their children: Katie, age 18, born in Delaware in February, 1882; Thomas F, 16, born in Ohio in 1853; John H, born in Ohio in January, 1885; Edward, 13, born in Ohio in September, 1886; Mary E., 12, born in Ohio in January, 1888; Maggie, 10, born in Ohio on January 10, 1890; Joseph, 8, born in Ohio in September, 1891; Willie, age 5, born in Ohio in September, 1894; Ignatius, 2, born in Ohio in January, 1898; and Theresa A., born in Ohio in May of 1900, and about one month old.
Here is information from Chez Nama—The Kilroy Family:
"6. James KILROY.
Born October 10, 1856 in Furnace, County Mayo, Ireland;
Died January 22, 1944 in Stuart, Florida.
Married Apr 10, 1881 in Furnace, County Mayo, Ireland, to Mary CHAMBERS,
Born March 17, 1857 in Ireland;
Died June 2, 1929 in Cleveland, OH.
"They had the following children:
26. i. Kathryn Agnes KILROY
27. ii. Thomas Francis KILROY [who was born in Newport on December 2, 1883, became an accountant in Cleveland, Ohio, and died as a single man on October 20, 1939, in Jensen, Martin county, Florida, according to Family Search.]
28. iii. John Henry KILROY
29. iv. Edward Aloysius KILROY
30. v. Mary Ellen (Sr. Mary James) KILROY
31. vi. Margaret Ann KILROY
32. vii. James Joseph (JJ) KILROY
33. viii. William Patrick KILROY
34. ix. Ignatius Cornelius KILROY
35. x. Mildred Theresa KILROY
36. xi. Madeleine Cecilia KILROY"
7 v. Mary Kilroy (born about 1867, married John Cleary, in Cleveland, Ohio, and had three children)
Donal O'Grady says that the parents of Michael "Mikey" Kilroy were Edmond (Edward?) Kilroy and Bridget McManamon, who had eight children. The parents of Edmond Kilroy were Patrick Kilroy and Honoria McLoughlin, who had 3 children. Donal O'Grady estimates that Honoria was born in 1700, but the year her husband was born, 1730, seems to be a better guess. A family tree on Geni (managed by Kenneth Kilroy) reports a Patrick Kilroy who was born in 1730, and died in Newport, Ireland, in 1820, who married Honoria McLoughlin, who died on November 18, 1790. They had at least three sons, including two sons named Edward Kilroy, and James Kilroy.
[There was another Kilroy-McLoughlin marriage in a later generation. Patrick Kilroy (son of Michael Kilroy and Bridget Higgins) and Bridget McLoughlin were married on February 21, 1887, and resided in Furnace. Their daughter Mary was born in Lettermaghara on January 30, 1888. A son, John Kilroy, was baptized on April 14, 1889; a son Michael Kilroy was baptized on August 29, 1890; a daughter, Bridget Kilroy on September 13, 1894; a son, Dominick Kilroy, on March 28, 1896; and a daughter, Rose Kilroy on November 25, 1897. Bridget died in Newport on November 18, 1970.]
A message of July 9, 2005, from Barbe Kilroy of Cleveland on RootsWeb's Kilroy Archives, lists these parts of her family:
PATRICK KILROY - Born c. 1730 Died c. 1818
He married Honoria McLOUGHLIN- Died Nov. 18, 1790
Children : EDWARD KILROY [Probably the Edmond Kilroy listed as a son on Donal O'Grady's pedigree charts.]
and 2 daughters?
EDWARD KILROY , Born? Died ?
He married Bridget McMANAMON , B ? D ?
Children: Mary Kilroy 1796-1806
Judith Kilroy, 1797 -
Honoria Kilroy, 1798 -
Sabina Kilroy, 1799-
Patrick Kilroy, 1802-
MICHAEL KILROY , 1806-1892
John Kilroy, 1808-
Dominick Kilroy , 1810-
MICHAEL KILROY. Born  D Mar 17, 1892 in Ireland.
He married Bridgit HIGGINS. Died Jul 30, 1889 in Ireland.
Children: John KILROY
Edward (Ned) KILROY
[Grace's Family Tree on Ancestry.com omits listing Edward and Patrick and names only 3 children: John Kilroy; James Kilroy, born in 1856, who married Mary Chambers (1857–1929) on April 10, 1881, in Furnace, county Mayo; moved to Delware in 1881, and on to Cleveland, Ohio before the end of 1883, was a builder of houses in Cleveland, and died at age 88 in Martin, Florida, in 1944. (Mary Chambers Kilroy was the mother of 11 children and died at age 72 in Cleveland on June 2, 1929); and Mary Kilroy (1867– ?).]
The Lord have mercy on the soul of Honora Kilroy alias McLaughlin Nov 18 1790 aged (blank) years Erected by her son James Kilroy.
In an email to Regina Kilroy, the daughter-in-law of Patrick Kilroy Sr. and Grace McGeough, Donal O'Grady explains Teel's relationship with Patrick Kilroy Sr. of Chicago:
"Teel is a 2nd cousin of mine, or in other words my grandfather* and her grandmother [I believe this should be mother#] were brother and sister.
"Our connection with your hubby Patrick [Kilroy Jr.] is as follows ... Patrick's grand aunt Matilda Kilroy married Ned Kilroy, my great-grandfather (Kilroy married a Kilroy) which would make my mother and Patrick 2nd cousins. Teel and Patrick would be between 2nd and 3rd cousins, your children would be full 3rd cousins (of Teels)."
(The message was from: "Donal O'Grady" <Muigheo@compuserve.com> to "Patrick J. Kilroy Jr." <firstname.lastname@example.org>; dated 21 Jun 2000; subject: Kilroy Family Tree.)
*Donal's grandfather was John Kilroy (18791963) who, in 1912 in Newport, married Margaret (Mag) Leonard (sister of Nan Leonard who married John's brother Michael) of Crossmolina, Mayo. Their oldest daughter, Mary, was born in 1914. She married James O'Grady in Newport on January 4, 1939. They moved to Chicago. Their oldest son, Donal O'Grady, was born in 1940, and has become the guru of Kilroy genealogy.
#John Kilroy was the third child and first son of Edward and Matilda Kilroy. Teel's mother, Anne (Nancy) Kilroy (19001986) was the tenth and last child of Edward and Matilda Kilroy. Nancy Kilroy was the youngest sister of John Kilroy and 21 years younger than John.
In a later email of June 21, 2000, to us, Donal O'Grady elaborated:
"My Mom, Mary O'Grady, maiden name Kilroy, is a first cousin of Teels. She had been in Galveston a number of times to visit Aunt Nancy [Teel's mother], and also was at the funeral. I have a huge Kilroy family tree, with over 1000 names in it, including your family but not the grandchildren. I don't have dates in some cases. I also have a copy of the origin of the 'Kilroy was here' legend. I gave Teel's nephew, Michael, a copy of the tree sometime last year, and I spoke to her brother Patrick on the phone when he was visiting Joe Kilroy (Chicago) last year in Florida. ...
"Teel is a 2nd cousin of Regina's Father-In-Law ... Pat Kilroy [Sr.], who was married to Grace McGough, or your offsprings would be 3rd cousins of Regina' husband Pat. and also a 3rd cousin of mine. Or to really confuse you ... Teel's grandfather, Ned Kilroy was my great-grandfather."
Ancestors of Matilda "Tillie" Kilroy
Kilroy was the surname of my wife's grandmother, Matilda "Tilly" Kilroy, before she married Edward "Ned" Kilroy. Her husband was a Kilroy born at Carrickaneady. Matilda's mother was Margaret Chambers and her father was Michael Kilroy. Margaret Chambers Kilroy had these children:
# Jim Kilroy, born at Carrickaneady, known as Long Jim Kilroy, married Margaret Keane. [James Kilroy was born to Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers on September 14, 1864, in Newport. See Carrickaneady under Other Kilroys in Mayo in the 1800s, below.]
[Family Search reports that Margaret Kilroy was born on August 5, 1865, in Newport to Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers.]
# John Kilroy, married a Keane. [According to Famly Search, John Kilroy was born to Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers on June 7, 1868, in Newport, Mayo. John Kilroy married Honor Keane a sister of Margaret Keane; see Cuilmore under Other Kilroys in Mayo in the 1800s, below.
# Son 3 [Dominick Kilroy was born to Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers on November 4, 1872, in Newport, according to Family Search.]
# Son 4
# Matilda "Tilly" Kilroy, married Edward "Ned" Kilroy.
# Ellen Kilroy, married an O'Malley. [Elenor Kilroy was born to Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers on June 9, 1870, according to Family Search. The birth of Elenor Kilroy to Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chamers on June 9, 1870, in Newport, Mayo, Ireland, is recorded in Ireland Births and Baptisms, 1620–1911 (FHL Film Number 101208)] Thomas O'Malley aand Ellen Kilroy were parties to a wedding that was registered in Westport, County Mayo, in the first quarter of 1894. Ireland, Civil Registration Indexes 1845–1958, volume 4, page 362, FHL Film Number 101257.
The father of Margaret Chambers (Kilroy) was Paddy Chambers, who was born in 1802 at Glen na Bo. Margaret Chambers was born to his second wife. Paddy Chambers' parents were Tom Chambers and Julia McManamon. See Descendants of Thomas Chambers born Glen na Bo, Newport , c1770 by Michael Chambers (born in Furnace, Newport, on June 30, 1916) and A further family tree of the descendants of Thomas Chambers and Julia McManamon.
Thomas Chambers held land in the townland of Shrafarna in Burrishoole parish, county Mayo, Ireland, in 1832, according to the 1832 Tithe Applotments for Burrishoole Parish (#1241). Several McManamons held property in the same townland. "Shrafarna" may be the townland now known as Srahmore. According to the same source, Francis McManamon held property in 1832 in the townland of Tavanagranue (Tawnagrania), about 3.5 miles north of Newport, with Kilroys (including Edward) and McManamons (Michael and Francis) as his neighbors.
Michael Chambers (born in Furnace on June 30, 1916), mentions James Kilroy on page 19 of The Chambers Family History (on the link to the Chambers family page, click on "Download Journal written by Michael Chambers in text only format"), which he wrote in 1978.
"Margaret Chambers was step sister [I would say half-sister] to my grand dad Tom. She was a Mrs Kilroy from Carrickaneady about one and a half miles the Castlebar side of Newport. She had 4 sons and 2 daughters. Two of her sons got killed on the railway in America .
"Long Jim Kilroy lived in the old home. The other brother John lived quite near. Jim and John were married to two sisters named Keane from Gortaworla, a village quite near. Their sister Tilly Kilroy was married to Eddie Kilroy and they lived in Derrylahan about a half a mile from Newport on the East side of the Mulranny road. Eddie Kilroy was born in Furnace and was a brother to Jimmy Kilroy who was married to Mary Chambers my aunt . Please see page 2."
Kilroys on the Flax Growers' List in Mayo in 1796
These two Mayo families are on the list of Irish Flax Growers, 1796:
Killroy (sic), Widow, Ballyovey, Mayo
Kilroy, Hugh, Crossmolina, Mayo
On the list for county Galway is:
Kilroy, Michael, Ballymacward, Galway
Kilroys in 1832 Tithe Applotment Books of Burrishoole Parish
These names are compiled from the 1832 Tithe Applotments for Burrishoole Parish:
Carrickaneady (about 1.1 miles southeast of Newport)
Inishkee (an island about 4.25 miles west of Newport:
Kilroy & Co
Knockalinweele (Knockatinnyweel) (1 mile east of Newport)
Lettermaghera (about 4 miles northwest of Newport in the mountains)
Tavanagranue (Tawnagrania) (about 3.5 miles north of Newport)
(also Francis Chambers and Francis and Michael McManamon)
James Kilroy (1886–January 5, 1954), a farmer of Pollacappul, Belmullet, County Mayo, was a captain of the Ballyglass Company of General Michael Kilroy's Flying Column in the Irish War of Independence and the Civil War that followed. He was interned at Hare Camp, the Curragh, with Michael Kilroy; Michael's brother, John Kilroy; Michael's brother-in-law, Petie Joe McDonnell; Jack Feehan; Jack Leonard; and others in 1923 and 1924. He was elected to the Irish Dáil in 1943 and served there until 1951. See: James Kilroy (politician) Interned in Harepark from November, 1922, to 1924.
In his earlier life Kilroy was a District Councillor for the Belmullet area and a member of the Belmullet Board of Guardians representing Sinn Féin. He was also Captain of the Ballyglass Company of the Irish Volunteers and later Adjutant of the 7th Battalion Belmullet and was captured after the burning of the Ballyglass Coast Guard Station in August 1920. He was interned in Galway, and in Portland and Dartmoor until January 1922. He took the Anti-Treaty side in the subsequent Irish Civil War and was a member of the 5th Brigade of the 4th Western Division comprising Erris and Achill and North West Mayo. He was captured near Westport in November 1922 while serving with a Flying Column there and was interred in Harepark camp until 1924.
After his release, he was an active member in Belmullet in the formation of the Fianna Fáil and was elected to Mayo County Council for Belmullet electoral area in 1927. He was elected to Dáil Éireann as a Teachta Dála (TD) for the Mayo North constituency at the 1943 general election, and was re-elected at the 1944 and 1948 general elections. He lost his Dáil seat at the 1951 general election but at the subsequent 1951 Seanad Éireann election, he was elected by the Agricultural Panel.
The IRA Nominal Rolls (Ref Code: RO/1-611) file in the Military Services Pension Collection contains information about the military service of James Kilroy: MA/MSPC/RO/340 – 4th Western Division, 2nd Brigade (North Mayo), 7th Battalion (Belmullet) 11 July 1921. [See MA/MsPC/RO/354 for 1 July 1922 as 1st Battalion, 5th Brigade, 4th Western Division.]
— 7. Battalion - North Mayo Brigade, Adjutant - James Kilroy, Quartermaster - James Leonard. (December1920 to March 1921, James Leonard took over as Quartermaster) (page 13)
— Letter from James Kilroy dated October 8, 1935: "There was none of the officers or Men of the Company interned on the 11th July 1921 with the exception of myself and Daniell (sic) Dixon, Moyrahan, Belmullet, now deceased. He was arrested with me and did terms in Portland and Dartmoor. He joined the 'Garda' in the end of 1922, contracted T.B. in prison and died about two years after joining Garda." (page 16)
— 5th North West Mayo Brigade, 4th Eastern Division, 1st Battalion. Officers from 1918 to 1920: Baurhave Coy - Captain James Kilroy, Ballyglass, Belmullet ... Br. Master (brewmaster?) Ml Kilroy, Ballyglass. (page 18).
James Kilroy married Julia Padden in Jan-Feb-Mar 1930 in the Registration District of Belmullet. Ireland, Civil Registration Marriages Index, 1845–1958 on ancestry.com. The 1911 census shows a Julia Padden, age 25, at house #1 In Knocknalina, Belmullet, Mayo, daughter of Anthony Padden, age 73, a widower and a farmer. Knocknalina is 9.9. km north by northeast of the town of Belmullet, on the west shore of Broadhaven Bay — just south of Ballyglass. (The names James Kilroy and James Gilroy both appear in the computer record of the registration of the marriage.)
James Kilroy died on the 5th of January, 1954. His wife Julia died on the 28th of July, 1979. They are buried together at Termoncarragh (Tarmoncarragh) Cemetery, Belmullet, Co. Mayo. The death of James Kilroy, age 68, born about 1886, was recorded in the registration district of Belmullet in Jan-Feb-Mar 1954. Ireland, Civil Registration Deaths Index, 1864-1958 (vol 4, page 39, FHL film number 257855).
"In the north western mouth of Broadhaven Bay stands Broadhaven Lighthouse which guides boats through the bay in more recent times. The lifeboat for the area is stationed at Ballyglass pier." Here is a photograph of the lighthouse. James Kilroy participated in a raid on this lighthouse on August 30, 1920. "Aug. 30 N: Belmullet Coast Guard Station, Ballyglass, raided and destroyed." Chronology of Events Impacting Co. Mayo and Its Brigades, 1918–24 ,page 20.
Here is part of a statement by Jack Feehan:
"After this I went to Belmullet on the request of my cousin, the late James Kilroy, who was captain of Ballyglass Company, eight miles outside Belmullet. ...
"There was a very large coastguard station at the entrance to Broadhaven Bay, also there was Ballyglass Lighthouse. While I was there the Coastguards were evacuated, except two members who were left to guard the building. ... As there were only two Coastguards in the building, we decided to raid and burn it, and at the same time we thought it might be an opportunity to obtain some arms. We raided the building and captured the two guards, but we were disappointed in obtaining only one .45 revolver and 20 rounds of ammunition. We also obtained two field glasses. We burned the building and also two boats belonging to same. I had to leave the area that night as I would be arrested. Two sisters of Seamus Kilroy accompanied me and we got outside Belmullet to a friend's house in Tallagh that night at about 2 o'clock, and cycled the following morning, which was Sunday, a distance of 40 miles and arrived in my own native place in Rossow, Newport, late Sunday night. About 11 o'clock on Monday morning I received a telegram from Belmullet: 'Seamus arrested and taken to Galway Jail'
"I was horrified and, in my anxiety, immediately cycled to Maam Cross Station and took the train to Galway City. I went direct to the jail and asked to see Seamus Kilroy, a cousin of mine. After some delay the warder returned and said 'Yes', which naturally I did not expect. On meeting Seamus, our conversation was very limited as the warder was present all the time. Seamus managed to tell me that himself and another Volunteer went back to the Coastguard Station to see how it was burning and were surrounded by a party of police who came by boat from Belmullet. What actually happened was that Seamus Kilroy and another Volunteer returned to the scene of the burning to ascertain that all was destroyed and were surprised by the party of police. The .45 revolver which was seized in the building was found close to Kilroy when he tried to hide it before capture. Seamus and the other Volunteer got 5 years' in Dartmoor Prison." BMH Witness Statement #1692. — John Feehan, Divisional Quartermaster, 4th Western Division, Activities of West Connemara Brigade and Brigade Flying Column, 1917–1921, pages 11–14.
James Kilroy's parents were Dominick Kilroy (Gilroy), who was born in about 1855, and Catherine Kilroy, who was born in about 1869. James was the first born of ten children. The marriage of Dominick Gilroy to Catherine Cleary (or possibly Catherine O'Donnell) was registed in the district of Newport in the first quarter of 1885. Ireland Civil Registration Marriages, 1845–1858, vol.4, p.293 (FHL Flm Number101255).
Dominick Kilroy could read, but not write, the English language. He usually used he surname Gilroy. He signed the return for the 1901 census of Ireland with an X [signed Dominick (X his mark) Gilroy] and his language skills were described as "Read only." Here are the names as entered on the return:
Residents of a house 2 in Pollacappul (Belmullet, Mayo)
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Religion Gilroy Dominick 46 Male Head of Family Father R Catholic Gilroy Catherine 32 Female Wife R Catholic Gilroy James 15 Male Son R Catholic Gilroy Maria 12 Female Daughter R Catholic Gilroy Rose Anna 10 Female Daughter R Catholic Gilroy Barbara 8 Female Daughter R Catholic Gilroy Michael 6 Male Son R Catholic Gilroy Ellen 4 Female Daughter R Catholic Gilroy Bridget 1 Female Daughter R Catholic
1911 census of Ireland (signed "Domk (X mark) Gilroy):.
Residents of a house 1 in Pollacappul (Belmullet, Mayo). Dominick is marked "cannot read."
Surname Forename Age Sex Relation to head Religion Gilroy Dominick 62 Male Head of Family Roman Catholic Gilroy Catherine 42 Female Wife Roman Catholic Gilroy James 24 Male Son Roman Catholic Gilroy Maria 21 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Gilroy Barbara 16 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Gilroy Michael 14 Male Son Roman Catholic Gilroy Ellen 12 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Gilroy Delia 10 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Gilroy Kathleen 7 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Gilroy Norah 3 Female Daughter Roman Catholic Gilroy Louesia Female Daughter Roman Catholic Gilroy Matilda 5 Female - -
Roseanne Kilroy, a sister of James Kilroy, married Jack Connolly. The marriage of Rose A. Kilroy to John J. Connolly was registered in Jan-Feb-Mar 1927 in the Registration District of Shoredich, Middlesex County, England. England & Wales, Marriage Index, 1916–2005 (vol 1c, page 131).
The civil war ended in April 1923 and Jack went quietly to England in the autumn of 1923. He got work in the construction trade. The skills he had learned on the railway and in the Flying Column stood by him and soon he had 200 men working under him. Jack married Roseanne Kilroy on 8th Feb. 1927 in St. Monica’s Priory, Hoxton Sq., London. Roseanne was born abt. 1891 in Pollacopple (sic), Belmullet. She was a cousin of Gen. Michael Kilroy. Her brother Jim later became a Fianna Fail T.D. for North Mayo. He was one of Joe Baker’s men captured in Glenhest on the 7th of March 1923; Jim was one of that party sentenced to death. Jack Connolly, O.C. 2nd Battalion, 1st Mayo Brigade
"... he became leader of the Tiernaur Coy. Six members of which joined Gen. Michael Kilroy’s “Flying Column”. The six members were: Laurence McGovern, Newfield, Pat McLoughlin, Knockmanus, Michael Browne, Roskeen South, Paddy Mulloy, Carheenbrack, Jim Moran, Carrowsallagh, and Jack Connolly himself of Derrycooldrim. Jack took part in the Kilmeena, Skirdagh and Carrowkennedy ambushes during the War of Independence. He took the Republican side in the Civil War and was captured on 1st November 1922."
"... he became leader of the Tiernaur Coy. Six members of which joined Gen. Michael Kilroy’s “Flying Column”. The six members were: Laurence McGovern, Newfield, Pat McLoughlin, Knockmanus, Michael Browne, Roskeen South, Paddy Mulloy, Carheenbrack, Jim Moran, Carrowsallagh, and Jack Connolly himself of Derrycooldrim. Jack took part in the Kilmeena, Skirdagh and Carrowkennedy ambushes during the War of Independence. He took the Republican side in the Civil War and was captured on 1st November 1922."
Other Kilroys in Mayo in the 1800s
Ardagh (43.3 km northeast of Newport, a short distance west of the town of Ballina)
Edward Kilroy and Catherine Gaughan were the parents of these children baptised in the Newport Chapel on the dates shown: Patrick Kilroy, March 4, 1908; Catherine Kilroy, December 11, 1909; Thomas Kilroy, December 16, 1911.
Ballyteige (10.8 km northeast of Newport, on the west side of Beltra Lough)
Patrick Kilroy, landholder, and Honor Philben, were the parents of: Honor Kilroy, born on July 29, 1865; Sarah Kilroy, born on September 29, 1867; and Ellen Kilroy, born on August 6, 1870. (County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson, page 56)
Carrickaneady (1.5 km east by southeast of Newport
James Kilroy [Long Jim Kilroy, whose mother was Margaret Chambers] married Margaret Keane, whose maiden name is also reported as Caine, Kain, and Kane in the baptismal records of Newport Chapel. Baptisms of their children shown by these records are: Mary Kilroy, March 11, 1900 (Kain); John Kilroy, April 14, 1901 (Keane); Margaret Kilroy, May 8, 1902 (Keane); Bridget Kilroy, May 2, 1904 (Keane); Patrick Kilroy, December 10, 1905 (Caine); Michael Kilroy, December 10, 1905 (Caine); Michael Kilroy, March 9, 1908 (Caine); and Martin Kilroy, May 9, 1910 (Kane). The records note that Patrick Kilroy married Anne (probably should be Grace) McGeough at the Chapel of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Chicago on May 27, 1947. Newport Chapel Records, Co. Mayo, Ireland—Baptismal Records, 1892–1911, by William G. Masterson, page 22 (Family History Library, British 941.73/82, K29mwg). Margaret Keane of Gortawala was the sister of Honor Keane who married James' brother, John. See Cuilmore, below.
Martin Kilroy, landholder of Carrickaneady, and Bridget Geraghty, were the parents of nine children: Patrick Kilroy, born February 15, 1868; Mary Kilroy, born March 25, 1869; James Kilroy, born March 11, 1871; John Kilroy, born November 16, 1872; Matilda Kilroy, born August 20, 1874; Martin Kilroy, born October 24, 1876; Thomas Kilroy, born November 28, 1878; Michael Kilroy, born July 22, 1880; and Dominick Kilroy, born July 22, 1880. County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson, at page 55. Two additional children listed in Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson, page 40, are: Bridget Kilroy, born December 28, 1882; and Peter Kilroy, born on January 20, 1887. Another child is listed in Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1892–1911, by William G. Masterson, page 22: Laurence Kilroy, bon July 28, 1904; baptized July 30, 1904..
The 1901 census of Burrishoole parish lists in the townland of Carrickaneady: Martin Kilroy, age 60, farmer, Roman Catholic, born in Ireland; his wife, Bridget, age 54; and children: Mary, age 27; Bridget, age 17; and Peter, age 13; and a visitor, Bridget Chambers, age 40.
Michael Kilroy and Margaret Chambers are listed as the parents of these children in County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson, page 55: James Kilroy, born September 16, 1864; Margaret Kilroy, born August 5, 1866; John Kilroy, born June 7, 1868; Eleanor Kilroy, born June 9, 1870; and Dominick Kilroy, born November 4, 1872. Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson, page 40, lists Dominick Kilroy, born November 3, 1872. Here is a quote from The Chambers Family History, written by Michael Chambers in 1978, page 19:
"Margaret Chambers was step sister to my grand dad Tom. She was a Mrs Kilroy from Carrickaneady about one and a half miles the Castlebar side of Newport. She had 4 sons and 2 daughters. Two of her sons got killed on the railway in America."
Patrick Kilroy, landholder, Carrickaneady, and Anne Cunningham, were married on February 26, 1865, and were the parents of these children: Patrick Kilroy, born January 7, 1866; Anthony Kilroy, born December 3, 1867; Martin Kilroy, born November 4, 1868; Mary Kilroy, born September 29, 1870; and Margaret Kilroy, born April 16, 1873. (County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson, page 56). Patrick Kilroy, age 68, a farmer, is listed in Carrickaneady in the 1901 census of Burrishoole parish, with his wife, Anne, 55, and son, Patrick, age 32. Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson, page 40
Cuilmore (28.7 km south of Newport, and 17.4 km south by southwest of Westport)
John Kilroy and Honor Keane were parents of these children whose baptisms are in the records of Newport Chapel: Michael Kilroy, October 5, 1910; Margaret Mary Kilroy, November 16, 1911 (who married James McHugh on November 24, 1943, at the residence of Joseph McManamon). Honor Keane (of Gortawala) was the sister of Margaret Keane who married John's brother, James [Long Jim] Kilroy. See Carrickaneady, above. Margaret Chambers was the mother of James [Long Jim] amd John Kilroy.
Derryloughan (6.7 km east by northeast of Newport, near Derrynfrevan Lough.)
John Kilroy, herdsman, laborer, and landholder, and Mary McTigue, were the parents of Patrick Kilroy, born on December 24, 1874; Mary Kilroy, born on May 17, 1876; Catherine Kilroy (sometimes listed as John), born on May 3, 1878; and John Kilroy, born on April 3, 1880. (County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson). Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson, page 40, lists the children this way: Patrick Kilroy, December 23, 1874; Mary Kilroy, May 15, 1876; Catherine (John) Kilroy, May 3, 1878; John Kilroy, March 27, 1880; Bridget Kilroy May 13, 1882; Margaret Kilroy, September 22, 1884 (married Eugene (Owen?) LaVelle on February 22, 1911, possibly in Cleveland); Peter Kilroy, born March 22, 1887 (married Mary Bridget Kettrick on December 30, 1916, in Newport); and Michael Kilroy; born May 11, 1889. Another son, James Kilroy, born at Bleachyard, was baptized at Newport Chapel on June 3, 1894. Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1892–1911, by William G. Masterson, page 22.
Lettermaghera (7.1 km northwest of Newport, near the southwest end of Lough Feeagh. and 1.9 km west of Furnace.)
Dominick Kilroy married Mary O'Boyle on June 22, 1883, and they had these children: Bridget Kilroy, born January 20, 1884; Mary Kilroy, born December 8, 1885; Sara Kilroy, born on February 4, 1889; and Catherine Kilroy, born on March 4, 1893 (1892?). Other baptisms listed in the records of Newport Chapel are: John Kilroy, August 24, 1893; Thomas Kilroy, December 9, 1895; and Dominick Kilroy, July 25, 1898 (married Bridget Masterson on August 29, 1920). This family is listed in the 1901 census of Burrishoole parish in Lettermaghera South: Dominick Kilroy, farmer, age 40; Mary Kilroy, age 42, wife; children: Bridget, age 15; Mary, age 13; Sarah, age 11; Catherine, age 9; John, age 7; Thomas, age 5; Dominick, age 2.
John Kilroy of Lettermaghera is listed in Griffith's Valuation. John Kilroy, landholder, and Bridget O'Boyle, of Lettermaghera, were the parents of Martin Kilroy, born on November 11, 1866. See Skerdagh below.
Michael Kilroy, landholder, of Lettermaghera, and Catherine Moran, were married on May 10, 1870, and were the parents of these children: Michael Kilroy, born on November 12, 1873 (baptized November 24, 1873); Thomas Kilroy, born on December 26, 1875? (baptized December 18, 1875); and Patrick Kilroy, born on August 12, 1878. (County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson, page 56). Other children listed in Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson, page 41, are: Peter Kilroy, baptized December ? 1880; Dominick Kilroy, baptized on September 28, 1882; Catherine Kilroy, baptized, October 15, 1884; Mary Kilroy, baptized October 26, 1887 (married James Walsh on December 12, 1911, in Newport); James Kilroy, baptized on January 5, 1890. This family is listed in the 1901 census of Burrishoole parish, Lettermaghera: Michael Kilroy, age 55, farmer; his wife, Catharine, age 50; and these children: Dominick, age 17; Mary, age 12; and James, age 10.
Michael Kilroy, age 40, a farmer, is listed in the 1901 census of Burrishoole parish in Lettermaghera South, with his sister Mary Kilroy, age 45; and sister, Cathrin Kilroy, age 37.
Patrick Kilroy and Bridget McLoughlin were married on February 21, 1887, and their daughter Mary was born in Lettermaghara on January 30, 1888. A son, John Kilroy, was baptized on April 14, 1889; a son Michael Kilroy on August 29, 1890; a daughter, Bridget Kilroy on September 13, 1894; a son, Dominick Kilroy, on March 28, 1896; and a daugher, Rose Kilroy on November 25, 1897. Patrick's wife, Bridget McLoughlin Kilroy, died in Newport on November 18, 1970. The family is listed in the 1901 census of Burrishoole parish in Furnace (or Srahmore): Pat Kilroy, age 60, farmer, Roman Catholic, born in Ireland; his wife, Bridget, age 38; children: Mary, age 13; Michael, age 10; Bridget, age 6; Dominick, age 5; and Rose, age 3. Their son John may have died before 1901. The daughter, Bridget Kilroy, moved to Cleveland, Ohio, in 1925, and her brother, Dominick Kilroy, followed her a year later. Bridget Kilroy, age 31, single, a domestic, who could read and write English, arrived in Boston from Cobb/Queenstown on September 5, 1925, aboard the Scythia. The manifest lists Bridget Kilroy's place of birth as Newport, and her nearest friend or relative in Ireland as her uncle, Edward Kilroy, Derrylahan, Newport, county Mayo (Edward "Ned" Kilroy, my wife's father). (Some Kilroy genealogies indicate that Bridget was also known as Agnes. Bridget Kilroy, who would have been 35 when the 1930 census was taken, may be listed in the 1930 census of Shaker Heights, Cuyahoga county, Ohio, as Agnes Kilroy, age 28, single, born in the Irish Free State, emigrated in 1926, a domestic servant in the home of Edwin J. Blandon at 16210 Parkland Road.) Dominick Kilroy, age 31, single, a carpenter, who could read and write English, whose last permanent residence was Newport, county Mayo, Ireland, whose destination was Cleveland, Ohio, and whose nearest friend in Ireland was his brother, Michael Kilroy, of Furnace, Newport, county Mayo, arrived in Boston aboard the Cedric from Cobh (Queenstown), Ireland, on April 11, 1926. The manifest says that Dominick intended to join his sister, Bridget Kilroy, at 2923 Brighton Road, Shaker (misspelled Shankey) Heights, Cleveland, Ohio, and that he intended to stay in the United States for ten years. Boston Passenger Lists, 1820–1943, on Ancestry.com. He almost certainly was the son of Patrick Kilroy (son of Michael Kilroy and Bridget Higgins, and brother of my wife's grandfather, Edward "Ned" Kilroy) and Bridget McLoughlin, who were married on February 21, 1887. A petition for naturalization was granted to Dominick Kilroy, age 31, by the U.S. District Court in Cleveland, Ohio, on September 18, 1931; his residence was at 9605 Heath Avenue, Cleveland (Petition 44465 on U.S. Naturalization Records Indexes, 1794–1995 on Ancestry.com).) He probably is the Dominick Kilroy who served as a witness to the marriage of my wife's parents, Anne (Nancy) Kilroy (Dominick's first cousin) and Patrick Whelton, in Cleveland on June 26, 1929.
Mullaun (1 km southeast of Newport, a 12 minute walk)
John Kilroy of Mullaun is listed in Griffith's Valuation.
Maria Kilroy was born to Daniel Kilroy, a carpenter, and Mary McManamon, on November 18, 1864, in Mullaun. (County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson)
Newport (12.5 km north of Westport, 99.5 km north by northwest of Galway, 255 km west by northwest of Dublin)
Ellen Kilroy of St. George's Street, Newport, is listed in Griffith's Valuation.
John Kilroy was born to Edward Kilroy, a laborer, and Mary Geraghty, of George's Street. Newport, on April 9, 1871. (County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson)
Thomas Kilroy, mason, Newport, and Bridget Kelly were parents of James Kilroy, born on May 16, 1864; and Mary Kilroy, born on May 16, 1864. (County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson, page 56). In the 1901 census of Burrishoole parish, Thomas Kilroy, age 78, a mason, was listed as living alone in Newport.
John Kilroy, age 22, a laborer of Newport, county Mayo, Ireland, was listed on the manifest of the Baltic when it arived in New York from Queenstown on November 10, 1905. His destination was the home of his sister, Mary McMahon, at 134 Woolsey Street, Cleveland, Ohio.
Skerdagh (Upper and Lower) (21 km north by northeast of Newport and 6.9 km north east of Newport, respectively. Skerdagh Upper is less then 2 km northwest of Skerdagh Lowerbut the distance by road is 12.3 km. Both places are aout a half of the distanc between Louh Feeagh and Glenhest to the West. )
John Kilroy married Bridget O'Boyle. Newport Chapel, County Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records, 1872–1891, by William G. Masterson ( page 40), lists the children of John Kilroy and Bridget O'Boyle of Skerdagh as: Patrick Kilroy, born on February 21, 1882; John Kilroy, born April 22, 1883; and Margaret Kilroy, born May 17, 1884. In the 1901 census of the parish of Burrishoole, John (a farmer, age 67) and Bridget (age 44), and their eight children, ranging in age from 26 to 7, were living in Bleachyard, Newport East: Patrick, age 26; John, age 20; Bridget, age 18; Margaret, age 16; Peter, age 14; Michael, age 12; Julia, age 9; and James, age 7. The family was in the same place in the 1911 census. A son, Martin Kilroy, was born on November 11, 1866, to John Kilroy and Bridget O'Boyle of Lettermaghra. County Mayo Families, Newport Area Families, 1864–1880 by William G. Masterson.
Patrick Whelton and Anne (Nancy) Kilroy
My wife's father, Patrick Whelton, was born on August 18, 1901, in Desert, county Cork, Ireland. His parents were John Whelton and Ellen Donovan. My wife's father, Patrick Whelton, was issued a British passport, with the endorsement "Travelling to United States of America," by the "Branch Passport Office, Liverpool" on February 9, 1921, and it was endorsed by the American Consulate at Cork (Queenstown) Ireland on February 15, 1921. Notations on the passport say "New York - March 4, 1921" and "Galveston - April 6, 1921." The Ellis Island website shows this Patrick Whelton arrived in New York from Queenstown aboard the Cedric on February 24, 1921. He was a single male, a "Farm Labourer," age 19, who could read and write, British nationality, Irish race, from Clonakilty, county Cork, Ireland. In the box for "The name and complete address of nearest relative or friend in country whence alien came" was: "Mother, Mrs. Whelton, Dessert, Clonakilty, Co. Cork." His final destination was listed as Flushing - L.I. - New York. His mother's maiden name (not shown on the passport) was Ellen Donovan.
My wife's mother, Anne (Nancy) Kilroy, was issued a passport by the Irish Free State, Passport Branch of the Department of External Affairs, in Dublin, on February 12, 1927. Quota Immigration Visa No. 24507 was issued to her by the American Consul in Dublin on April 11, 1927. My wife's parents, Patrick Whelton and Anne Kilroy, met on the boat that brought Anne (Nancy) Kilroy to the United States for the first time in 1927. Patrick Whelton was returning from a visit to Ireland. Nancy went to a home in Cleveland of a relative, probably of her brother and sister-in-law, Peter Kilroy and Catherine (Kate) Hoban Kilroy. Patrick returned to his job in Galveston, Texas. They continued their friendship by correspondence, and they were married in St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Cleveland, Ohio, on June 26, 1929. Witnesses were Domenic Kilroy and Matilda Kilroy. (This Matilda Kilroy was probably the daughter of John Kilroy, Anne's (Nancy's) brother, and his wife, Catherine Hoban, with whom I believe Anne was living in Cleveland at the time of the wedding.) A record of the marriage of Nancy Kilroy and Patrick Whelton will be found at volume 157, page 171, page match 29, of the records of the Probate Court of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, which are on the Internet under Historical Marriage License Index, 1810 - April 1998. The newly married Wheltons settled in Patrick's then home town, Galveston, Texas, where they were listed in the 1930 census of Galveston in a rented house at 1119 25th Street (roll 2334, page 218):
Patrick Whelton (head), age 28, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1921, married at age 27, naturalized, fireman for railroad.
Annie Whelton (wife), age 30, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1927, married at age 29, no occcupation.
They had six children: Their children and many other Whelton relatives in Galveston are listed on my web page: Patrick Whelton and Anne (Nancy) Kilroy; Wheltons of County Cork and Galveston, Texas.
Matthew Kilroy and the Boston Massacre
Matthew Kilroy was one of nine British soldiers involved in the Boston Massacre of March 5, 1770, and who were indicted for murder on the following day. Matthew was one of the soldiers who fired his musket, and one of two soldiers convicted of manslaughter (but acquitted of murder) and sentenced to have their thumbs branded. Kilroy was convicted of killing a rope maker named Samuel Gray. He was defended by John Adams. By law, the defendants were not allowed to take the witness stand in their own defense! See: The Boston Massacre Trials. See also: John Adams and the Boston Massacre Trial of 1870. (I do not know if Matthew Kilroy was related to the Kilroys mentioned above.)
The soldiers were members of the 29th Regiment of Foot, which, at least after 1800, was known as the Worcestershire Regiment. British Orderly Books show that the regiment arrived in Boston in (September) 1768 and returned to England in 1773. The 29th Regiment was the first unit of the Crown forces to shed the blood of the American Colonists, and was given the nickname The Blood Suckers or The Vein Openers. See: History of the Worcestershire Regiment (1694–1970). Enlistments were for life and at very low pay. See: Soldier of the King.
According to a Regimental Register of Pensioners, Matthew Kilroy, age 28 with 13 years of service, a member of the Twenty-ninth Regiment of Foot (2.s Co) - Labourer - visited a hospital with "a lame knee" on February 22, 1775. (The last two digits of 1776 are unclear.) UK, Royal Hospital Chelsea Pensioner Registers of Soldiers Who Served in Canada, 1743-1882. His residence is listed as M. Mellick.
"The Royal Hospital Chelsea was the administrative office for the British army and was responsible for distributing pension payments to British soldiers since the 1680s. While some pensioners surrendered their pension to the hospital and lived there (“in-pensioners”), many more lived outside the confines and received their pensions elsewhere (“out-pensioners”). This database contains records for soldiers who served in Canada and were applying for their pension after service in the British military. The records also include records of discharge."
"The Royal Hospital was founded by King Charles II in 1682 as a retreat for veterans. The provision of a hostel rather than the payment of pensions was inspired by Les Invalides in Paris."
"Kilroy and Montgomery faced the death penalty at the sentencing on December 14, 1770. To escape execution they 'prayed the benefit of clergy,' a Medieval remnant of the time when clergymen were excepted from the secular courts. To receive the benefit they had only to prove they could read Psalm 51, verse 1*, the 'neck verse,' at a time when most people were illiterate. Although illiterate himself, Kilroy was able to obtain the benefit because the reading requirement was abolished in 1705.
*Psalm 51:1 "Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy loving kindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions."
"Suffolk County Sheriff Stephen Greenleaf branded Kilroy and Montgomery on the right thumb with an 'M' for murder. The brand was to prevent them from ever being able to invoke the benefit of clergy again."
Kilroy returned to the Twenty-ninth Regiment, which had left Boston by ship following the Massacre—but the Regiment may not have returned to Great Britain until 1773. Most of the enlisted men in the 29th Regiment in 1770 seem to have been Irish, and the word Irish occasionally appears after the name of the regiment. Masonic Lodge #322 was formed within the Regiment, and is said to have been formed under an "Irish constitution." The regiment was in southern Ireland in 1750. Here is a part of a history of the 29th (Worcestershire) Regiment of Foot:
"The 29th left Gibraltar in October, 1745, for Louisburg in Cape Breton where it remained until 1749, when it left for Chebuctoo Harbour, Nova Scotia and was employed in clearing the site of the present city of Halifax. They landed in Cork in 1750.
"In 1765 the 29th returned to Halifax, from Ireland, where it remained until 1768, then going to Boston."
Ann Rinaldi has written a novel about the friendship of Matthew Kilroy and Rachel Marsh who was a nanny to the children of John and Abigail Adams. The Fifth of March: A Story of the Boston Massacre (Gulliver Books Paperbacks, November 30, 1999). Here is part of a review from Publishers Weekly:
"Rachel is 14, bound as a nursemaid to the children of John and Abigail Adams, at whose house she sees many of the town's 'movers and shakers' (one of the book's few faults is its jarringly anachronistic language). When British troops are sent to Boston to keep order, Rachel—despite her increasingly anti-Royalist sentiments—takes pity on Matthew Kilroy, the young sentry posted at the Adamses' door. Their relationship gradually blossoms, but Rachel, who has embarked on an ambitious program to educate herself and who rightly fears 'getting into circumstances,' refuses to demonstrate her affection in more than verbal terms. Lonely, frustrated, underpaid and reviled by the citizenry he was sent to protect, Matthew explodes during a riot on March 5, 1770, after which he and his fellows are tried for murder and manslaughter in the deaths of five colonialists. How Rachel acts according to her newly awakened social conscience and sense of self-worth makes for engrossing and educational reading. However, readers may object to Rachel's sense of guilt over Matthew's sexual frustration, and to her pronouncements on 'good breeding.'"
[The Pre-Revolutionary Irish in Massachusetts, 1620–1775, by George Francis Donovan. (George Banta Publishing Company, Menasha, Wisconsin, 1932. 158 pages) lists a Matthew Kilroy in Boston in 1770. Donovan extracted only names of Irish origin—almost entirely from Whitmore's Port Arrivals ... Boston, 1715–1716 and 1762–1769 (indexed as source no. 9750 in PILI, 1st edition). Donovan's work was originally a doctoral dissertation at St. Louis University in 1931. Genealogy.com cites this work and gives a "permanent entry number" of 2760524 and "source publication code" of 1642.]
Kilroys from Newport in Chicago
Here are the listing of Kilroys in Chicago Irish Families, 1875–1925 (now on Ancestry.com):
"Kilroy, Mary, nee Conway, April 25, 1899, wife of Michael, daughter of James Conway, sister of Patrick, James, Michael and Thomas Conway, native of Newport, Co. Mayo, aged 34 yrs. Funeral from resid., 652 N. Campbell to St. Mark's Church to Calvary"
"Kilroy, Nora, wife of Michael, and daughter of Ellen Cusick, and the late Matthew Cusick, and sister of Mrs. Frank O'Malley, Mrs. Michael Gill, Mrs. James Hannon and Kate, Delia, Peter and Margaret Cusick. Funeral from resid., 83 E. Huron st. to Holy Name Cathedral to Calvary, native of Co. Mayo. -June 2, 1902"
[There is a Michael Kilroy, age 39, a laborer, from county Mayo, on the manifest of the "Atmosphere" that arrived in New York from Liverpool on March 20, 1865. With him was Mary Kilroy, age 8, and Catherine Kilroy, age 6, both from county Mayo.]
The manifest (line 8) of the Caronia, which arrived in New York City from Queenstown, on August 30, 1905, listed Annie Kilroy, of Newport Ireland, age 46, married, a housekeeper, whose race was Irish and whose destination was Chicago to join her husband, Patrick Kilroy, at 1848 Superior Street., Chicago, Illinois. On the same page of the same manifest (line 11), and traveling on the same ticket, was James Kilroy, age 11, a single child, whose destination was also 1848 Superior Street in Chicago. Manifest entries indicate that both Annie and James had previously been in Chicago in 1905.
The list of US citzens on the manifest of the Panama when it arrived in New York City from Cristobal, C. Z, (Panama Canal Zone), on March 17, 1921, included: Daniel Kilroy, age 45, born January 6, 1876, in Chicago, and residing with his family at 2959 Fulton Street, Chicago; his wife, Ada Kilroy, age 38, born on December 2, 1882, in Washington, Springfield county, Kentucky; and their son, Daniel Kilroy, Jr., age 14, born April 15, 1906, in Chicago.
James Kilroy, age 48 (?), single, whose last residence was Newport, Ireland, and whose father was Martin Kilroy of Newport, county Mayo, Ireland, was listed on the manifest of the Caronia when it arrived in New York from Queenstown on May 31, 1911. His destination was the home of his brother, Michael Kilroy, at 2015 Seminary Avenue, Chicago, Illinois. His place of birth was Newport, Ireland.
John Kilroy, age 22, whose occupation was farming, whose last residence was Newport, Ireland, and whose father was James Kilroy of Newport, was on the manifest of the Baltic when it arrived in New York from Liverpool on March 13, 1923. John was going to join his Uncle, Michael Kilroy, at 1630 North Whipple Street, Chicago, Illinois. He was born in Newport, Ireland.
Margaret Kilroy, age 18, single, a teacher, of Newport, who father was J. Kilroy of Carrickeneady, Newport, arrived in New York from Liverpool aboard the Carmania on April 8, 1921. With her was Catherine Keane, age 34, single, a tailor, also from Newport, whose closest relative was her brother, O. Keane of Cuilmore, Newport. They both listed as their destination the home of their uncle, T. Kilroy, at 2436 Wilson Avenue, Chicago, Illinois. Each stated that they intended to remain in the US for 5 years.
Martin Kilroy, age 25, single, a policeman, who last residence was Newport, Ireland, is listed on the manifest of the Campania that arrived in New York from Queenstown on August 9, 1902. His destination was 3037 Broad Street, Chicago, Illinois (an aunt, Mrs. Vaughan). In the 1910 census, at 3037 Broad Street in Chicago, there was listed Anna Vaughan, age 62, a widow, mother of 5 children, 2 of whom were living, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1870 (T-624, roll 244, page 10A, line 20). In the same household were her son, James T. Vaughan, age 33, a widower, born in Illinois to parents born in Ireland, clerk for a railroad; her son, Richard J Vaughan, age 28, single, born in Illinois to parents born in Ireland, clerk for a railroad; her son, John H. Vaughan, age 25, single, born in Illinois to parents born in Ireland; a sister, Mary Garthy, age 62, single, born in Ireland, emigrated in 1870, no occupation; and a grand-child, Mary Anna (Vaughan?), age 6, born in Illinois to parents born in Illinois (probably the daughter of James T. Vaughan).
Michael Kilroy, age 25, a farmer, from Newport, Ireland, was on the manifest of the Carmania that arrived in New York from Queenstown on May 2, 1906, with a destination of 3037 Broad Street, Chicago, Illinois (an aunt, Mrs. Vaughan).
[Reverend Peter Kilroy, age 25, a clergyman of Newport, Ireland, arrived in New York from Queenstown aboard the Olympic on September 10, 1913, with a destination of Philadelphia. The manifest notes that he knew Archbishop Prendergast of Philadelphia. Peter's father was Martin Kilroy of Newport, county Mayo. The same Peter Kilroy, age 33, single, returned to New York on August 20, 1920, aboard the Celtic. His address was 3728 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia. Apparently, he had been naturalized in Philadelphia on March 4, 1919.]
"Kilroy was here."
For the origins of the phrase "Kilroy was here," go to Legends of "Kilroy Was Here" and click on "Site 1." Here is what is generally accepted as the true story:
"Legend #1: This Legend of how 'Kilroy was here' starts is with James J. Kilroy, a shipyard inspector [in Quincy, Massachusetts] during WWII. He chalked the words on bulkheads to show that he had been there and inspected the riveting in the newly constructed ship. To the troops in those ships, however, it was a complete mystery — all they knew for sure was that he had 'been there first.' As a joke, they began placing the graffiti wherever they (the US forces) landed or went, claiming it was already there when they arrived."
Here is BBC's explanation:
"James J. Kilroy was a ship inspector at the Fore River Shipyard in Quincy, Massachusetts, USA. It was his responsibility to check on how many holes a riveter had filled in a shift on any given day. In order to prevent double counting by dishonest riveters and to prove to his supervisors that he'd been doing his work, he began marking 'Kilroy was here' inside the hulls of the ships being built. He used yellow crayon so it would be easily visible; this way the off-shift inspectors wouldn't count the rivets more than once and pay the riveter for work he hadn't done.
"Once the ship became operative, carrying military troops that were headed overseas and bound for the war, the phrase was a complete mystery. Why it was there and being found in such out of the way places made it all the more mysterious. All they could be certain of was that Kilroy, whoever he was, had 'been there first'. As a joke, troops began placing the graffiti wherever the US forces landed and claimed it had already been there when they'd arrived."
According to Michael Quinton's World Wide Words, the New York Times published this explanation on December 24, 1946:
“During the war he [James J Kilroy, of Halifax, Massachusetts] was employed at the Bethlehem Steel Company’s Quincy shipyard, inspecting tanks, double bottoms and other parts of warships under construction. To satisfy superiors that he was performing his duties, Mr. Kilroy scribbled in yellow crayon ‘Kilroy was here’ on inspected work. Soon the phrase began to appear in various unrelated places, and Mr. Kilroy believes the 14,000 shipyard workers who entered the armed services were responsible for its subsequent world-wide use”.
Quinton goes on to comment:
"The problem is that there is evidence that the name, and the phrase, were being used in this way even before the US entered the War at the end of 1941."
A History of Shipbuilding at Fore River by Anthony F. Sarcone and Lawrence S. Rines gives more detail:
"One of the most interesting stories to come out of the war is that of 'Kilroy was here.' The 'Kilroy was here' phrase appeared everywhere during World War II, but its origin did not become widely known until after the war had ended. In 1946 the American Transit Association ran a contest to find out where and why the phrase originated. As it turned out, the winner was James J. Kilroy of Boston. It seems as if Kilroy was hired by Fore River shipyard on December 5, 1941 as a checker. His job was to count the rivet holes and then leave chalk marks where he had left off. It was on this basis that the riveter's piece of work was calculated. Some of the riveters were not too honest and would erase the mark left by Kilroy. Thus, some of the rivet holes were counted twice. Kilroy got wind of this devious practice and proceeded to scrawl 'Kilroy was here' on his rounds. He reportedly left his mark on such famous Fore River vessels as the battleship, Massachusetts, now berthed permanently at 'Battleship Cove', Fall River, Massachusetts, the Carrier, Lexington (II), and the heavy cruiser, Baltimore, as well as numerous troop carriers. In later life Kilroy became a Boston City Councillor and state representative. He died on November 26 [should be 24], 1962." (citing) Joseph Salak, "Kilroy Was Here," Our Navy, (October, 1971), 12-13. See also: Quincy Patriot Ledger, April 11, 1975, n.p."
When James J. Kilroy died on November 24, 1962, at age 60, he was survived by his oldest daughter, Margaret Kilroy Fitzgerald, of Halifax, Massachusetts, and eight other children, whose ages in 1948, were, James 13, Mary Ann 12, Robert 10, Ellen 9, Ann 6, Kathleen 4, Larry 3, and Judy six months. Margaret was 15 in 1948. See her story on the web page: How we got started...
James J. Kilroy's gravestone and history are on Find A Grave Memorial #10932011, which includes this sketch:
"The phrase 'Kilroy was here' and the accompanying graphic of a bald headed character looking over a fence was the trademark of Fore River Shipyard welder inspector James J. Kilroy."
The 1936 Boston City Directory published by Sampton & Murdock Co. and available on ancestry.com contains this entry on page 1433:
Kilroy—Jas J (Margt J) furn packing and crating 1301 Colmbus av Rox h 79 Centre do (Rox = Roxbury)
The 1941 Boston City Directory lists at page 1214:
Kilroy—Jas J. (Margt J) (Kilroy Bros h 3 New Heath Rox
Kilroy—Bros (Jas J Kilroy) movers 1329 Columbus av Rox
The 1942 Boston City Directory lists at page 1224:
Kilroy—Jas J (Margaret J) (Kilroy Bros) h 3 New Heath Rox
Kilroy—Jas J (Margt J) rate str ForeRiver h 3 New Heath Rox
James J. Kilroy and his family are found in the 1940 census of the City of Boston (ward 11, block 15), in a rented house at 3 New Heath Street:
(1940) James J. Kilroy, age 37, completed 3 years of high school, born in Massachusetts, resided in th same place in 1935, occupation of truckman, working on own account.
Margaret J. Kilroy, wife, age 36, completed 4 years of high school, born in Massachusetts.
Margaret Kilroy, age 8, born in Massachusetts.
James Kilroy, Jr., age 7, born in Massachusetts.
Mary A. Kilroy, age 5, born in Massachusetts.
Robert E. Kilroy, age 3. born in Massachusetts.
Ellen F. Kilroy, age 2, born in Massachusetts.
Ann M. Kilroy, less than a year, born in Massachusetts.
The 1930 census of Boston (ward 11, block 11; Roxbury Township) lists in a rented house at 153 Central Street (?):
(1930) James J. Kilroy, age 27, married at age 27, born in Massachusetts to parents born in Ireland, truckman, proprietor.
Margaret J. Kilroy (wife), age 26, married at age 26, born in Massachusetts to parents born in Ireland, no occupation.
Massachusetts Birth Records, 1840–1915, on ancestry.com, show that James Joseph Kilroy was born in Boston on September 25, 1902, to James J. Kilroy, laborer, and Annie Kilday at 8 New Heath Street (R). Both parents are listed as born in Ireland.
Public Member Trees on ancestry.com say that John J. Kilroy married Margaret Josephine Earner (1904–1991) in Boston in 1930; that his father was James Joeph Kilroy, who was born on January 2, 1877, in County Roscommon, Ireland, and died on February 21, 1945; and that his grandfather was John Kilroy, who was born in April, 1850, in Cloonehill, Roscommon, Ireland, and died in 1890 in Lynn, Essex County, Massachusetts. (See Miggins family tree and James Fitzgerald family tree.) I have not found a connection between these Kilroys of county Roscommon and the Kirloys of county Mayo.
Origins of the Surname Kilroy
On his gravestone, the surname of General Michael Kilroy is spelled only in Irish: Miceail Mic Giolla Ruaid. (All in caps and possibly without a space between Giolla and Ruaid.) On the monument near Glenhest, the Irish spelling is Micael Mac Giolla Ruaid. On the gravestone of Teel's grandmother, Matilda, in Burrishoole Cemetery, the name is spelled only in Irish: Maitilda Nic Giollaruaid.
Irish Ancestors gives as the origin of Kilroy "Galway-Roscommon-Sligo, Midlands etc. Ir. Mac Giolla Rua (red-haired servant)." It also lists the Irish name Mac Giolla Ruaidh as the equivalent of Mac Elroy, Gilroy, Kilroy, and a variant of Kilroy not listed in the survey. On the gravestones at Burrishoole Abbey, Giolla and Ruaidh are combined into one word, and there is no h at the end of Ruaidh.
According to McBain's Etymological Dictionary of the Gaelic Language: gille=lad, servant, Irish giolla, Early Irish gilla; ruadh=red, ruddy, Irish ruadh, Early Irish rúad.
There is no letter k in the Irish-Gaelic alphabet, which contain 18 letters. Old Irish-Gaelic Surnames. If a translation from Irish-Gaelic to English is made without hearing the name pronounced, therefore, Gilroy is a natural result. A supplement to Ireland's History in Maps offers this translation from Gaelic to English : Mac Giolla Ruadh - MacIlroy, McElroy, MacGilroy, Kilroy. (The same source translates Mac Eochaidh into Keogh and (Mac) Keogh. Our family name, McGough, comes from the same Gaelic source.)My wife's mother's name is one of the very few names in the 1911 census of Ireland that is spelled in Gaelic rather than in English. In the original return of the 1911 census of house #12 in Cloondaff, Glenhest (which is 700 meters, or an 8 minute walk, southwest of Glenhest, and 9.5 km northeast of Newport), county Mayo, Ireland, the name of my wife's mother, Nancy Kilroy, age 11, is entered in Gaelic: Nainsey (?) Ni Giollaruid. (Ni means daughter of.) On the line below is (Nancy Gilroy). The name of Nancy Kilroy's sister, Mary (Kilroy) McManamon, and the other members of the McManamon household, are spelled in English (although mispelled as Mc Manmon). With the exception of Nancy Kilroy, the names of all persons in the 47 houses in Cloondaff were originally reported in English. The general instructions for the Family Return—Form A of the 1911 census return requested the head of the family (in this case, Michael McManamon, who could speak both Irish and English) to fill out the form in preparation for a pickup by an enumerator on Monday, April 3, and the enumerator was to assist such persons as may not be able to fill the form themselves. The enumerator may have entered the Nancy Gilroy in parenthesis on the line following the Irish-Gaelic name for Nancy Kilroy.
In the 1890 birth records of Ireland, Kilroy was most common in Mayo (47), followed by Roscommon (43), Sligo (34), Galway (25), and Cavan (19). All other counties were below 10. In the same birth records, there were a total of 214 Kilroys and 96 Gilroys, another variant of the surname. (There were also 29 Kilroys, 11 Gilroys, 466 McElroys, and 309 McIlroys.)
Francis McGeough of Drumbeo, Ontario, and Iowa
Grace McGeough married Patrick Kilroy at the Chapel of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Chicago on May 27, 1947.
The Tithe Applotment Books show Francis McGeough (#322) in 1830 as living with his widowed mother Bridget (#320), and brother Bryan (in America, Bernard) (#321), in the townland of Drumbeo, parish of Clontibret, county Monaghan, Ireland. (The numbers refer to lines in my table McGoughs, McGeoughs, and McGeoghs in Ireland in the 182030s and 185060s: By County, Parish, and Townland.)
In 1833, when he was 8 years old, Francis McGeough moved to Ontario, Canada, with his mother, Bridget McGeough, his brother Bernard (Barney, Bryan), who was 24, Bernard's wife, Catherine Hernehan, and their baby daughter, Bridget. In 1852, Francis McGough and his brother Bernard McGough moved their families from Lindsay, Ontario, to Winnebago county, Illinois. In 1855, Bernard moved his family from Winnebago county up (and across) the Mississippi River to Allamakee county, Iowa. Bernard's brother Francis followed in 1856. The story of this family is told in McGeough: The Story of an Irish Family by Phyllis McGeough Devereux (1992). A short summary of the history of this family, much of it extracted from the Devereux book, is found on this website at Bernard McGough and Catherine Kernaghan of Lindsay, Ontario, and Allamakee County, Iowa.
Francis McGeough (18251910) married Bridget Murphy, who was born in Canada. The youngest of the nine children of Francis and Bridget Murphy McGeough was Robert McGeough, born in Iowa in 1876. Robert married Agatha Gavin (18771952). One of their daughters was Grace McGeough. In 1992, the year the Devereux book was published, Grace McGeough was living in Chicago with her husband, Patrick Kilroy Sr. who is described in the family tree as an "Irish cop." Patrick and Grace were probably married at the Chapel of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Chicago on May 27, 1947. Their son, Pat Kilroy Jr., lived in Evanston, Illinois. Regina, the wife of Pat Kilroy Jr. has furnished some of the information on her family that is set out above.
Descendants of Thomas Chambers & Julia McManamon of Newport, Crossmolina Parish Co. Mayo, Ireland, an oral history by Michael Chambers of Furnace, County Mayo in 1978. Michael Chambers was born in Furnace of June 30, 1916.
Kilroy Genealogy Queries on CousinConnect.com
Kilroy Family Genealogy Forum on Genealogy.com
A superseded website, Search for My County Mayo Roots, by William G. Masterson, a member of the Chambers family, contains a list of valuable sources he has compiled:
"Anybody interested in the history of the parish of Burrishoole will find a mine of information in five publications by William G. Masterson. The publications are:
County Mayo, Ireland, Newport Area Families 1864–1880 by William G.Masterson, April 1994, 144 pages indexed, no permission required by General Register Office. Price $18. [Available at Family History Library, Salt Lake City: British 941.73/B2 V2mw 2000]
Newport Chapel, Co. Mayo, Ireland, Baptismal Records 1872-1891 by William G.Masterson May 1996 (revised January 2000), 128 pages, indexed, permission granted by the parish priest. Price $16 [Available at Family History Library, Salt Lake City: British 941.73/B2 K29mw]
[Newport Chapel, Co. Mayo , Ireland , Baptisms 1892–1911 by William G. Masterson September 2001 , 69 pages , indexed, permission granted by the parish priest . Price $15 . Added from Publications of William Masterson on an earlier version of the website of the Newport Historical Society. Available at Family History Library, Salt Lake City: British 941.73/B2 K29mw]
A Collection of Newport/Westport Co Mayo Marriages 1821–1911, by William G. Masterson, March 1999, 206 pages, indexed, permission to publish from Archbishop of Tuam. Price $23
Burrishoole Parish, Co Mayo, Ireland, Tithe applotment Book Transcription (1832) by William G. Masterson June 1992, approximately 60 pages, self indexed, with permission to publish from the National Archives, Dublin. Price $13
1901 Census, Burrishoole Parish, County Mayo, Ireland, by William G. Masterson Dec 1990, 171 pages, transcription and index, with permission to publish from the National Archives, Dublin. Price $20. [Available at Family History Library, Salt Lake City: British 941.73/B2 X2m]"
[1911 Census, Burrishoole Parish , County Mayo, Ireland, by William G. Masterson, May 2002, 158 pages, transcription and index , with permission to publish from the National Archives, Dublin. Price $21. Added from Publications of William Masterson.]
The information is now largely contained in a fine website by Bernie McCafferty, Clew Bay to Cleveland, and CDs containing the information are available through him.
See the Kilroys in the index to the Chambers family page on the website of Burrishoole Roots - Newport Historical Society Genealogy.
The Kilroy Connection
Updated October 18, 2015
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