Saturday, January 16, 2010

1821 Census of Ireland

In 1821, a census of the 600 residents of Derryhale, Parish of Kilmore, Co. Armagh, Barony of O'Neilland West was completed. The only Morrison's identified in that census was the family shown above. There is a chance that the James, aged 15, is the father of Thomas Morrison {1841-1919}. Additionally, William and Marey Morrison, both 46 and born in 1775, would be the grandparents of Thomas and my great, great, great grandparents.

The 1861, 1871. 1881 and 181 Census of Ireland were destroyed by the British government during World War One so the paper could be used as pulp. Most of the 1831 and 1841 census returns were destroyed in a fire at the Dublin Courthouse in

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Derryhale House

"Louisa Bacon, as landlady, was responsible for visiting her tenants and collecting rents. When visiting Derryhale she remained overnight and stayed in the Dower house which had been built for the widow (dowager), possibly Louisa Bacon’s mother, on the death of her husband.

The property now belongs to the Stanley family who have lived there since the present owner’s father purchased the property, on 26th. October 1927, from the Wright family. They had purchased the house and land from Thomas Morrison. It is of interest to note that this farm was part of the original Estate belonging to Col. J. M. Richardson
The current owner has the original land survey, carried out by Samuel Greer Esq., which is dated 8th. March 1890. This document is entitled Map of Farm in the Townland of Derryhale: the property of Mr. Thomas Morrison. The land was subject to the Irish Land Act 1903. This legislation required the owner of the land to make twice yearly payments to Credit the Land Purchase Account of the Government of Northern Ireland. The amount of these payments or Ground Rents, due by the owners of the property, has been recorded in the Title Deeds."

The above information was excepted from a larger article entitled: "Some Historical Notes" by Dr. John E. Galway published by 'The Craigavon Historical Society' in their magazine 'Review', Vol. 8, No. 2, 2002-2003.

{Note: The Wright family referred to in the article was Wm. John Wright {1864 - 1916} and his wife, Margaret {Morrison} Wright, {1867 - 1950}, daughter of Thomas Morrison. They purchased what was known as 'Derryhale House' from Thomas Morrison sometime before his death in 1919. It is not known, at this time, when Thomas Morrison first came to own Derryhale House and whether he raised his family there.

Friday, January 1, 2010

The Travels of James Morrison

James Morrison {1869 -1948}, the oldest son of Thomas Morrison, made several trips between Ireland and the United States during the first decade of the 1900’s.

The transcription of the passenger list shown below is from the S.S. Carthaginian which arrived at Ellis Island on 11 Apr 1902. It lists James Morrison, single, age 29 and states that his last place of residence was Derryhale. The hand written passenger list {not shown} indicates that James travelled in steerage, paid for his passage himself and had $10 to his name when he arrived. He stated that his destination was "New York/Harvard" and listed his occupation as 'laborer'.

James would return to Ireland, marry Sarah Jackson of Lisavague, and the two of them would arrive in the States aboard the S.S. Columbia on 3 October 1903, ten days after they were married at St. Saviours Church.

James and Sarah returned to Ireland where their first child, Margaret Florence, was born on 27 August 1906 in Derryhale, Co. Armagh. The three of them would arrive in Montreal, Canada aboard the S.S. Ionian on 13 October 1906 when Margaret Florence was five months old. From Canada, they made their way to Maynard, MA.

The Ulster Covenant

In 1912, to oppose a Home Rule measure that was being debated in the British Parliament, more than a quarter million men in Northern Ireland signed a petition and held mass rallies. The signature of Thomas Morrison from Derryhale can be seen on the second section of the Covenant shown above. Women were not allowed to sign the Covenant but signed the parallel Declaration. In total, the Covenant was signed by 237,368 men, and the Declaration by 234,046 women. Thomas Morrison signed the Covenant in the churchyard of St. Saviour's, the Dobbin Church. {Click on each image to enlarge}.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Sunday, December 6, 2009

"...keep them in obscurity."

Hewitt Henry (1902-1975) was a grandson to William John and Sarah (Kirkpatrick) Morrison. He was 17 years old when his grandfather died.

In 1939, at the age of 37, Hewitt penned a Morrison - Kirkpatrick family tree. In the preface, he wrote: "The dates and people referred to in this 'tree' are correct as far as my records go. The comments are based on the fragments of memories my mother has given me, of those who lived or died ere I was born. Other comments are from my own knowledge of the characters of those whom I know or have known."

Of his grandfather's older brother, Thomas (1841-1919) and his children, Hewitt wrote:

"Tom lives in Derryhale a very fine old man with hardly a grey hair till the day he died, had eight of a family who, mother says, were very wild and not the kind of people I’d like Winnie to meet so we’ll keep them in obscurity."

Ah, a whole family of black sheep -- my grandfather among them!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Morrison's of Derryhale, Co. Armagh

Five cousins are seeking other gg grandchildren of James MORRISON (1812) of Derryhale, Co. Armagh, Northern Ireland. His wife's name is presently unknown but they had eight children.

The dates of birth of James Morrison’s eight children were: Mary, 1837; Thomas, 1841; Wm. John, 1842; George, 1846; James, 1846; Margaret, 1848; Elizabeth, 1850; and Robert. 1860.

Thomas Morrison, 1841, Derryhale, Co. Armagh married the widow Elizabeth (May) VAUGHAN and they had seven children. Their dates of birth were: Margaret, 1867; James, 1869; George, 1871; Thomas, 1873; Wm. John, 1875; Richard, 1882; Robert, 1885.

Wm. John Morrison 1842, Derryhale, Co. Armagh, married Sarah KIRKPATRICK and they had four children. Their dates of birth were Mary, 1868; Georgina, 1870; Samuel, 1872; and James, 1874.

The Morrison’s of Derryhale, Co. Armagh can be found on