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My 3rd cousin made a previous post (titled O'Kief/Bateman) looking for information on our mutual ancestors John O'Keeffe/Keefe and his wife Mary Bateman. As a quick recap, John O'Keeffe worked as a hostler for a man named Lord Bateman. John fell in love with Lord Bateman's daughter, Mary. We think maybe Mary's father was against the match so they ran away to the US along with Mary's younger sister, Susan, and lived on a farm in Wisconsin until their deaths. 

At the time of my cousin's post last year, we had no information on John or Mary's parents' names. All we knew was that John O'Keefe was from Cork. I have been able to find death certificates for both of them. John's father's name is listed as 'John Keefe/Ireland' but there is no information on his mother's name. Mary's birthplace just says 'Ireland', her father's name was John Bateman and her mother's name was Catherine. It says both her parents were from Ireland.

I thought finally having both parents names would open some magical door, but I am still stuck. Every cousin I have managed to make contact with has been given some version of the story that 'Lady Mary Bateman ran off with the lackey/gardener who worked for her father Lord Bateman and that she and Susan were disowned.' I have had DNA done for myself, mother, and my great aunt Jan- Mary Bateman's great granddaughter. We are getting many high confidence Bateman DNA matches to people with Bateman ancestors with ties to Cork Ireland. If Mary's father John Bateman was indeed a Lord at the time she sailed (1848) shouldn't he atleast be easier to find? I've seen many John Bateman's in Griffith's but how would I know if they were a Lord or not? 

Does anyone have any advice or know where I should be looking? I'd just love to know where Mary and her parents were from, if she had other siblings besides Susan, and possibly go a little further back in the tree.

Here is what I know about Mary: b.6thAug1824 Ireland, dau of Lord John and Catherine Bateman, has a sister Susan b.1826, possibly Protestant but definitely not Catholic, left Liverpool on the ship Westpointe and arrived in New York 3rdJul1848, husband was John O'Keeffe/Keefe b.24thAug1818 Cork, Ireland-Catholic, place of marriage unknown, she died 8thAug1907 in Poygan, Wi from an aneurysm.

Kelly M

Sunday 8th Oct 2017, 03:50AM

Message Board Replies

  • Dear Driftlessgirl:

    Many thanks for your post to the Ireland Reaching Out message board.

    The source that I have checked for you is one that you should take a closer look at:

    Landed Estates Database of Ireland.

    In particular, the Bateman family is mentioned in the link below and you will note that John's name is mentioned along with his brother Thomas and Rowland.  At the bottom of the link are a list of resources for further information, and you might note that there appears to be some archive material in the UK.  In addition, there are other links and I see a link in Private Collections that deals with the Bateman family (very bottom).

    If you have any further questions, please let me know.  You can email me at:

    The very best of luck with your research!

    Kind regards,




    Jane Halloran Ryan

    Sunday 15th Oct 2017, 10:49AM
  • Hi Jane,

    I apologize that I have not replied to you sooner. I wanted you to know that I did look through the website you linked quite a while back. I guess I just didn't know how to decide if the John Bateman listed is the one I'm looking for. I have found so many during my search.

    According to my 3x great grandmother Mary Bateman's death certificate, her parents were listed as John and Catherine Bateman. I found some married John and Catherine Batemans, but records either show their Mary's as being older, or have records showing them as married and having children in Ireland while our Mary is in Wisconsin. We're still working at it, but it is slow going. We are now trying to see if DNA matches can help point us in the right direction and help narrow down which Bateman line we come from. 


    Kelly M

    Monday 2nd Apr 2018, 08:06PM
  • Saturday 29th Aug 2020, 04:47PM
  • Hi Kate,


    I have been looking for this story for years,  trying to confirm what my mother told me of Scottish lady Mary Bateman running off with the Irish carriage driver.  Her telling of Mary’s origin could be erroneous, but I have confirmed that they were the parents of her father’s mother’s father, Thomas Martin Keefe, born 1855 in Poygan, Wisconsin.

    I would be very interested in any developments you have made in your research.

    Thank you,

    Laura (

    Saturday 29th Aug 2020, 04:55PM

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