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Trying to find out what happened to Morgan Murphy's brother and sisters. Their parents' names were Michael Murphy and Alice "Ally" Whelan. They were born circa 1810 and were married 28 Jan 1838 and had 8 children (that I know of). They lived in Harristown, Carlow but the kids were baptized in Graig. The 3rd child was son Morgan, my direct ancestor, who emigrated to Philadelphia in 1870. I know all about him. Now I'm hoping to learn where his siblings went but their names are shared by so many contemporaries, it's difficult to determine who's who. They are:

Patrick b.1838 | Mary b. 1841 | Margaret b. 1847 | Elizabeth "Betsy" b. 1850 | Catherine b. 1853 | Anne b. 1856 | Ellen b. 1862

Can anyone offer a suggestion how to proceed? I searched Catholic Parish Registers (in for marriages containing the names above and I found some, but the parents' names are not included so it's not possible to validate it's the right Murphy. Ideas?

Indiana, USA

Jim Gowdy

Sunday 6th Nov 2022, 08:10PM

Message Board Replies

  • Jim,

    I would suggest you look at the baptismal records on RootsIreland as well as those for Carlow on

    Look for marriages and deaths in the civil records at and in the records on

    Look for the individuals in the 1901/1911 Irish censuses.


    That's for a start.

    I hope it's helpful.


    Sunday 6th Nov 2022, 09:46PM
  • I do have all their baptismal records. I'll try the other resources you suggested. What'll be most helpful is if the marriage record lists the name of the parents. There were so many people named Mary Murphy or Patrick Murphy etc. You can't be sure you're getting the right one. Also, because all of them are women (except Patrick), if they got married, their names would be different on those censuses. But it's all worth another look.


    Jim Gowdy

    Monday 7th Nov 2022, 02:20PM
  • Jim:

    Have you considered DNA testing? You will likely have matches with descendants of siblings to Morgan Murphy.

    Civil marriage records in Ireland only show the names of the fathers of the bride and groom.

    Roger McDonnell

    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Monday 7th Nov 2022, 04:12PM
  • Roger, thanks for the response. I have DNA tests with Ancestry, MyHeritage and 23andme. I've been able to identify all the matches (on Ancestry) down to 30cM and none are descendants of Morgan's siblings. Below that threshold, I can't determine who too many of the people are unless they have a public tree and many do not. I can narrow down the likely candidates by looking at shared matches. I've gotten proficient at that. And now Ancestry can reliably say whether a match is on my mother's or father's side. This helps too. But then it comes down to messaging each individual, which I am hesitant to do. I get the sense people don't really enjoy that! But perhaps that's the next step.

    As Patricia suggested, I need to dig into rootsireland and irishgenealogy more thoroughly. I've exhausted the Catholic Parish Registers on Ancestry - those are the ones that do not list the parents' names on weddings, but those were instrumental in finding the baptisms.


    Jim Gowdy

    Tuesday 8th Nov 2022, 03:47PM
  • Jim:

    Messaging can be frustrating because you don't hear back half of the time but it is the only way to try to figure out connections. Good luck!




    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Tuesday 8th Nov 2022, 04:15PM
  • My 2nd great grandmother was Mary E. Murphy (8-27-1826 to 7-17-1899). Her brother was Robert, born 1830. Their mother was Garatha Murphy (1794-1878). Anyone familiar? 

    Eileen Matthews Dolan

    Eileen Dolan

    Wednesday 9th Nov 2022, 11:53AM
  • No - that's a different group I'm afraid - thanks for checking in though!

    Jim Gowdy

    Wednesday 9th Nov 2022, 03:49PM

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