Mary Grace O'Donnell 18731873

Mary Grace O'Donnell 1873

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Born Shraheens, Achille Isle, Mayo to Manus O'Donnell and Katherine Mulloy.Immigrated to Cleveland as young woman and married Michael McDonnell; they had 8 children. She died in Cleveland.

Additional Information
Date of Birth 24th Jun 1873
Date of Death 10th Jul 1954


  • Do you have her birth cetificate.  I assume you have proof she was born in Shraheens, Achill.  I am interested as her father was probably my gt gt grandmother's brother.  Thank you.


    Friday 15th January 2021 02:36PM
  • I have no birth certificate for her. Her "known" date of birth was 24 June 1873 and death 10 Jul 1954. Family story tells that when applying for U.S. Social Security with no birth certificate, a witness was found in her village who remembered Mary being born "the night of the Big Wind"  which is not too helpful I am afraid. I have even tried meteorlogical timelines to pinpoint "The Big Wind" but find there were many and throughout Ireland, so no hope there. I could try again to look for S.S. Application but had little luck once. 

    She seldom spoke of her life there to her grandson, my husband, except to talk of gathering kelp from the shore. My husband was of the opinion that she left home at early age to avoid conflicts with her father Manus' second wife, her stepmother, but that is again conjecture. She did have a cousin who lived around the corner street who visited often. They spoke in Gaelic when they didn't want little ears to hear. I will have to look up the cousin's name as it escapes me at the moment. Perhaps that might also be a link to your gr gr grandmother's brother as well. I have photos of Mary if you are interested. Best, Amy Kenneley


    Friday 15th January 2021 08:13PM

    Thank you for replying, realy do appreciate it.  All very interesting and I am sure there is a connection, especially as you mentioned Shraheens in the first posting.  I am going to look out the info I have and come back with that.  There is a record of her definite date of birth which I will post (just the year is different).   I don't know if you have ever been to Achill but it is in general a very windy place (even in Summer at times)!  I have photos too.  It would be great to know her cousin's name who lived around the corner street and visited her as this may just tie things up more  i.e. more certainty.   My gt gt grandmother was a Mary O'Donnell who had a brother called Manus.  Anyway, Amy, I will collect my detail and come back to you soon.  Thank you again.


    Saturday 16th January 2021 01:39PM
  • I found Mary's birth record in the Achill records:

    ODONNELL, Patrick MULLOY, Cathren farmer Derreen

    ODONNELL, Mary 1865 Jun 23 0101108 9-1 421 ODONNELL, Pat x

    It says Derreen (the next village) but Shraheens and Derreen were confused at times or it may be that one parent came from Derreen.  The Mulloy name is a more associated with Derreen.  Also, women often went to their mother’s home for the delivery and the child would be registered as born in that townland.   

    I have more info for you (I think your husband is my 4th cousin twice!) but will wait to hear the name of the cousin who visited Mary Grace in Cleveland in order to be certain of some facts.



    Sunday 17th January 2021 09:03AM
  • Hi Amy

    Did you have any joy in finding the name of the cousin who used to visit Mary Grace please?

    Thank you


    Wednesday 3rd March 2021 08:53AM
  • Sorry, no joy as yet. Found a male Cooney in the Cleveland Census of 1910-1920 living in their household listed as nephew. Could be Mary Grace's nephew or Michael McDonnell her husband's nephew. He brought his brothers over, perhaps a nephew. Galway, though.  I'll keep looking. Sadly, a barrel of family info stored in that basement home was dampened and thrown out years ago.....sigh.  Best, Amy K.


    Wednesday 3rd March 2021 11:24AM
  • Hi Amy

    Thanks for your reply.  Do you know the first name or initial of the Cooney lodger or his age please?  We do have Cooneys in the family so he may be Mary Grace’s nephew.   I can try and track him if I have more info. 

    I suggest a surname for her cousin just in case it helps:  Gallagher, Masterson, Kilbane, Patten, Corrigan, McCann?

     Thank you.


    Wednesday 3rd March 2021 04:44PM
  • Hi again Amy

    My cousin is doing a family tree and also had DNA result - found the following info:

    Our great great grandfather, Mathew Gallagher’s daughter, Mary (1839-83) married Martin Gallagher (1843-1934) in Shraheens and they had a daughter, Grace (1868-1912). They then went to Cleveland.

    Another daughter, Ellen (1874-1944) married Charles Kenneley (1874-1957)

    Their son, Edward (1897-1977) married Katherine McDonnell



    Pat O'Donnell and Katherine Mulloy’s daughter, Mary Grace, married Michael McDonnell (1866-1936)

    Their daughter, Katherine McDonnell (1901-1969) married Edward


    As with all things Irish, the dates may not be exact but the info will be.

    Kind regards




    Thursday 4th March 2021 12:13PM
  • Hello again Marian! Well first: My husband found that his grandmother Mary Grace O'Donnell's father's name was Manus O'Donnell and that Manus was married to a Katherine Mulloy. Manus supposedly married again after Mary G.'s mother died and that maybe forced her to come to US although story goes she went first to Canada. We have here born 24 June 1873 and she died 10 July 1954. Again: Shraheens was the given area where she lived. A man named Masterson compiled several Mayo Achill Island vitals and this was found at Western Reserve Historical Society in Cleveland.  I wonder if your information might have listed a godfather as Patrick O'Donnell and that might be the difference between which father's name to use.


    in the 1910 Census for Cleveland, the nephew was Frank Cooney aged 19 and "from Ireland" he was working as a glazier which was Michael McDonnell's trade also. As head of household the enumerator was supposed to list the relationship between all members in household so either Frank was really Michael's nephew or enumerator was told that. So Frank could also be Mary Grace's nephew.


    Well it is a small world. Martin J. Gallagher born 1850 in Shrahine, Mayo Ireland died in May 1934 in Cleveland and is buried at Calvary Cemetery in Cleveland. He worked in England for a time before coming to US and family said he was nicknamed Marky Darn ..Martin Darwen,where he worked. Came to Cleveland. Tradition says he came as married to Cleveland. Wife Mary Gallagher. b. 1839 in Ireland died 1883 in Cleveland. Their children were: Grace 1868-1912Dennis, Mary Ellen 1875-1944,Beatrice 1897-1985, Michael "Casper" and James "Banty". these nicknames seem to follow the men more than women and to keep all the many first names/surnamed persons separate. I am not sure if Martin's wife Mary had Gallagher as her maiden name or not, but there are several intermarriages between Gallaghers. (I guess a small gene pool to select!) 

    Mary Ellen married Charles Thomas Kenneley and their son Edward Martin Kenneley was my husband's father. Edward Martin and mother, Katherine McDonnell( daughter of Mary Grace

    O'Donnell) married and had my husband Edward Michael "Mike" Kenneley, James Harold, and Mary Ellen. All three children are now deceased.

    And to top this convoluted family: Brian Kilbane, born 1884 in Achill, came to Cleveland, had a son Bernard and Bernard's daughter is Margaret Mary (Peggy) Kilbane Kenneley!

    Peggy married my second son, Timothy Martin Kenneley. Small world indeed.  Her grandfather, Brian, was chosen Grand Marshall of the annual St. Patrick's Day Parade in the 1940's and died before St. Pat's Day, so he was posthumous Grand Marshall. Peggy and Tim named their son Bryan, so the name goes on..... Hope this helps a little. Hope you can figure out the connections.

    And now for the Murray sisters: I found an obit. for their mother: Her maiden name was Katherine M. Cleary, who married James Michael Murray. He predeceased her. Their children are: Mary Murray Bohan, Madeline (deceased in obituary) Catherine Murray Crain, and Joseph Murray grandson (I think). This obit was in the Cleveland Plain Dealer . Jan 15, 1974. The mass was Jan 16 1974 at St. Christopher's church and she was buried at Calvary inCleveland.

    If I don't hear from you for awhile, I hope you have a great St.Patrick's Day! Covid keeps us all apart but someday we can all be out and about, Blessings, Amy Kenneley  


    Sunday 7th March 2021 08:12PM
  • Hi Amy

    Thank you so much - very helpful and much appreciated.  One last thing, I am confused as to who the Murray sisters are and how they fit in?  Sorry!

    Wishing you too, a very enjoyable, if different, St Patrick's Day.


    Wednesday 10th March 2021 04:48PM
  • Katherine Cleary Murray was Mary Grace O'Donnell's cousin. I assume first cousin but the cousin relationship is very flexible, I have found over here. If Cleary is not the maiden name of the person you were looking for, we may have a disconnect there. I also noted that you have Patrick O'Donnell as Mary Grace's father. The information I sent was what I had from a book by Masterson on Achille island vitals, and the name was Manus O'Donnell as her father. Perhaps it is a middle name, either one?   Sorry no more joy on this end.

    I have been trolling through the Galway records for Michael MacDonnell's father James (Michael married Mary Grace)  There is an oversupply of James McDonnells in Galway alone...enough to be trolling for years....sigh.   A Happy St. Patrick's Day to you as well! I will be going through the records of the Irish American Club, East Side, of Cleveland the day before, on a project to archive their history....lots of bar receipts!!!!!    take care, Amy Kenneley


    Wednesday 10th March 2021 05:51PM

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