Tuesday, March 24, 2009

If you’re enough lucky to be Irish... You’re lucky enough!

I must be lucky as all the ancestors on my father's side are Irish and there are a couple on my mother's side.

Going back through my pedigree the surnames I find are:
Bowe Connolly Cregan Curry D'arcy Gleeson Harrington Kealy Molloy Moore Ryan Tierney Wade.

Of these names I find the D'arcy, a French sounding name, intriguing. From this site I learn that "In Ireland the surname is of dual derivation, being either Norman-French as above, and originally followers of Strongbow, earl of Pembroke, who invaded Ireland in 1169, or as an anglicized form of the native Gaelic "O'Dorchaidhe", meaning a descendant of the dark one."

The earliest D'arcy ancestor I have located was John D'arcy from Templemore, Tipperary who was born in the late 1700's. He was married to married Mary Wade and had at least 5 daughters: Mary b 1814, Eliza b 1816, Bridget b 1820, Margaret b 1821 and Ellen b 1826.

John had died some time before 1839 when my 2nd great-grandmother Eliza b 1816 and her husband, Denis Tierney, emigrated to Australia on the ship "China". Eliza's sisters Bridget and Margaret also settled in Australia.

My grandmother claimed that the famous Australian fighter Les D'arcy, who came from Maitland, NSW near her home town of Dungog was her cousin. I would love to be able to find evidence to support her claim.

The luck of the Irish may assist me to one day find out more about my D'arcy ancestors.

This post was written for the 13th Edition of the Carnival of Irish Heritage & Culture: "Irish Names"

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