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 I am trying to trace any Mackavoys /McAvoys in southern ireland. My Gt Gt Gt  Grandfather was baptised in St Kill Nicholas, Waterford in 1761.  He then moved to Deptford in England where he died in 1806. and a long line of Mackavoys worked in the shipyards of Deptford and Woolwich and lived and died in those areas of London. The name Mackavoy I have never been sure of as it could well be a phonetic spelling. If anyone knows of any McAvoys/Mackavoys who lived around waterford or wwho existed further afield , I would be very interested


Wednesday 6th June 2018, 12:10AM

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  • 1946mac:

    Welcome to Ireland Reaching Out!

    I checked the 1911 census for Co. Waterford  and there were no McAvoy, MacAvoy or Mackavoy people in the county. There was one Mackavoy in the entire country in County Clare. 

    I would suggest that you add your great great great gandfather's story to our XO Chronicles site and possibly someone will see a connection.

    You may want to consider autosomal DNA testing. Possibly you will find distant cousins with McAvoy connections.

    Roger McDonnell

    Castlemore Roscommon

    Friday 8th June 2018, 06:25PM
  •  Dear Roger,

                         Thank you for your response. It is strange there are no McAvoys or variants in Ireland. My Gt Gt Gt Grandfather was allegedly born in Kill St Nicholas and Baptised there in 20/11/1768.

                        His father and mother were John McAvoy b.1735 and Jane b.1739. same location. John was a "Tidewaiter" a customs man who waited on the high tide to usher ships into Waterford

                         Now Thomas ,his son was a mariner, and was baptised in Kill St Nicolas in 1761 but died in Deptford in 1806. The family has had a long history tied up with Depford and Woolwich in the ship building industry there.  I can track the family  acurately because I have multiple sources of family members (Mackavoys) whom I detected or vice versa on Family Finder (FTDNA).

                       However, there aslo a number of McEvoys who are close to me genetically, from Northern Ireland but my attempts to contact them have proved fruitless.

                      For a number of generations up until today some of my direct descendants spell their name Mackavoy but in the 1840s my Gt grandfather decided to spell it MacAvoy.  Why I don't know. I have more Mackavoy connections than I do MacAvoys.

                     It was always assumed that the spelling of McAvoy to Mackavoy was the result of phonetic spelling by various clerks.

                    In the 17th and 18th century a number of men who were matched on my Y chromosdome  appeared on the Eastern Seaboard of the USA. Their names are close but not too close, .e.g. MCvey, McEvoy, Mcavour, and so on. but they can't trace their names back beyond their arrival in the USA.

                    So I am at a bit of an impasse.

             I am not sure where to go from here or if the rcords of the early McAvoys in the early 1700s are completely wrong. None of the family near and far can accurately pinpoint John McAvoy 1735 and the reference came from LDS.


    Kindest regards

              Mike MacAvoy

               New Zealand 


    Saturday 9th June 2018, 01:40AM
  • Hi Mike!

    One clarification.      You made this comment      "It is strange there are no McAvoys or variants in Ireland"     Just to clarify there were no McAvoys or variants in Co. Waterford. There were many (656) McAvoys in other counties particularly in Northern Ireland, Down and Antrim had the most.

    My guess is that an ancestor left either Down or Antrim and settled in Waterford and then Thomas emigrated to England. Finding records in the 1700s would be very difficult.



    Castlemore Roscommon

    Sunday 10th June 2018, 04:44PM
  •  Dear Roger,

     Thank you for the clarification. My mistake county and country are very close.

     I think you are probably right with the movement of a family member south but I can probably never prove it.

    Thanks for your help



    Monday 11th June 2018, 01:38AM