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Researching the Lernihan Family of Kilmihil Parish. (spelled Learhinan on 1911 Census)

I'm a great granddaughter of Thomas Joseph Lernihan (b. 1886- 1956) of Kilmihil Parish, son of Thomas Lernihan (and Kate Molloy, b. 1854-1943,) who was born about 1842,
son of James (Seamus) Bawn Lernihan, (b. abt. 1796- 1869) and Ellen ?, (b. abt. 1794-1879).
James, son of Michael (abt. 1770),
Michael son of Domnal (abt. 1730, County Galway).
(Info from 'Lernihan Family History of County Clare' from the Clare Heritage Centre, completed in 2001.)

Thomas Joseph emigrated in 1905 to Pittsburgh, PA, USA, then to Los Angeles, CA. He worked for the railroad, then for the L.A. police department, becoming a detective.

His siblings, Matthew (Colonel) , Jeremiah (The Yank), and Catherine (ma. John Haugh) stayed in County Clare.
Current questions:
1. More info about the spouse of James (Seamus) Bawn Lernihan, (b. abt. 1796- 1869) . 'Ellen' is reported in the Lernihan Family History of County Clare from the Clare Heritage Centre, completed in 2001.

And any info about spouses of the previous generations would also be appreciated.

2. How is my Lernihan family line connected to P.J. Lernihan and Nora Killeen Lernihan of Kilmihil Parish. I've come across some of their info, but cannot figure out the connection.

I've been fortunate to connect with some Irish cousins in County Clare.
I've just obtained a most interesting book: " Parish of Kilmihil" by Cotter, Moran, Collins, (1987), that may enlighten, but also create more questions!
Thank you much for your time and help.


Monday 21st Oct 2019, 02:09AM

Message Board Replies

  • RE: Lernihans and other spellings of surname in Kilmihil area

    Check the following free online sources for Ellen's surname.  Copy and paste links if they don't work.  As the Lernihan surname is spelt so many ways I used Le* in surname search on FindmyPast to bring up all the various misspellings. I am not subscribed to FMP, just registered, so you should be able to use the search for free as I did for the Irish Catholic Parish Registers. 

    Kilmihil register:

    7 6 1851 John 

    26 10 1853 Catherine

    Kilmacduane register:

    18 1 1857 Mary  Residence given is Leitrim on Border of Kilmihil and Kilmacduane - lots of Lerhinan/Learnihans etc there

    But just to confuse things there is also another James and Ellen in:

    14 6 1862 Michael 

    For PJ Lernihan see:

    6 June 1943

    24 2 1915

    22 4 1914

    19 3 1880 Kilmihil register

    27 8 1874 Kilmihil register

    7 3 1873  Kilmihil register

    21 8 1871 Kilmihil register

    27 2 1870 (clounwhite/cloonwhite south  is on border of Shyan/Sheeaun, Kilmihil

    see also baptisms:

    kilmihil 28 9 1850  

    kilmihil 14 11 1851 

    If this is the same Patrick that marries Jane Hickey as his second wife then we have an indrect link as Jane is the sister of my great great grandma Mary Hickey of Gowerhass.

    Hope this all helps  :)





    Tuesday 22nd Oct 2019, 09:31AM
  • Dear jcd01,

    Thanks very much for all the info!

    I'll be busy for a while sorting out the Lernihans/Lerhinans/Learnihans.

    I did look at the Kilmihil Parish registers and found the 2 Lernihan couples of James/Ellen.  Still not sure who's who because the dates given by the Clare History Center for my James/Ellen would make them about 55 and 57 years old at the registered 1851  birth.  I'll need to go over their report again and make sure I recorded it correctly.

    Wanted to share an interesting bit.  Was reading about Father Gaynor in the book  "The Parish of Kilmihil"  and I discover that he is the same parish priest who in 1945, organized the records and wrote the index, by family, at the beginning of the Kilmihil Parish Baptism Register, and in neat handwriting!    On the last of his many index pages, he writes: "Finis book 1, Deo gratias!" 

     Thanks again for source info, still much to discover. Cathy


    Thursday 24th Oct 2019, 06:24AM
  • Attached Files
    Dan Learhine.JPG (80.58 KB)


    We had a Daniel Lerihine(as not sure of the spelling of his name.) who married our Bridget Butler and had a son in Pittsburgh,Pennsylvania in early 1900's

    Dan working on a roof job and fell off,dieing few days later..he never saw his son..didn't know if your family??


    We never knew much about him thinking Bridget and Dan mayhave met coming from Ireland to Philadelphia or NYork port?? as

    both from County Clare...attach is his death..L. Butler




    Friday 4th Sep 2020, 02:12AM
  • Attached Files
    Image.pdf (0 bytes)

    The biggest problem is the various spellings of the name Learhinan.  In the beginning I was searching for a family called Lerkolin, or Lerchin, Larhinan   The Learhinans I have come across were hardworking, not wealthy, sporty, not educated but fairly intelligent, good horsemen and may have suffered from Dementia when older. Many could not write in English nor sign their name.  They suffered heart disease and some cancer, but many died of accidents when young, which makes me think the young men were risk takers.

    I do not know if you are stilllooking into this.  I also got a copy of this fantastic family tree information done into the Learhinan family.  I am very grateful for the work done by Brid Mc*. The decentants of Thomas Learhinan traveled to Australia and USA and their lines are all very well documented.

    In my research I have tried to trace all Australian people in the late 1800's with Learhinan parents and have linked a few together but some still stay stand alone.  The problem is also they may have been baptised one Christian name but were known as another.  I could publish the lines I have but they have not all been confirmed so would only be a guide for others to research further. 

    My interest was whether the Thomas Learhinan was the brother who stayed in Ireland of the Learhinan who came out to Australia who were children of James Learhinan and Ellen Kelly.  Unfortunately even though there were four brothers who came out to Australian and two sisters, I have found no survivors heirs with the Ydna alive.  Males when married tended to have female.  I know some of my cousins and second cousins have done DNA testing on commercial sites but I think they have only linked then to each other. Not back to Ireland as these test only really cover a few generations unlike the old YDna and MDna ones.

    Catherine Learhinan who was the daughter of Ellen Kelly and James M Learhinan died I think in 1886 in Australia. In her will she sent 50 pounds to her brother a Thomas Learhinan of Killrush Post office.  I do not know if you can trace this money transfer to Ireland at that time of the post office kept such records.

    When in 1854 Mary (Maria) Breene was baptised in  St Micheal's   to John. Breene and Biddy (Bedelia) Learhinan  Her god parents were James Learhinan, Ellen Kelly.  Bedelia was the sister of Catherine mentioned in the will.  

    In 1886 how many Thomas Learhinan were living in Clare who used Killrush Post Office as their address? 








    Thursday 8th Jul 2021, 05:41AM

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