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Hi there,

About 1865 Catherine Mulcahy of Ballynagleragh arrived in Melbourne, Australia. She was we believe born about 1845 to Timothy 'Denis' Mulcahy and Mary Veronica Costelloe. When she came here, we believe there were a number of her people here with her, including Annie Mulcahy of Killaloe who she referred to as family. There was Martin Mulcahy who was a sponsor to one of her children, Thomas Costelloe who sponsored another and many other Irish named sponsors.

We (my cousin Mick Livy and I) have done extensive research into the Mulcahy's of Ballynegleragh. We believe the missing pieces to join all the dots may lie in descendants of today. We know there was a Patrick Mulcahy of Ballynagleragh who died in 1974, we can see the place of the original farm house we attribute to the Mulcahy family, still extant. We have made some contact with Mulcahy's believed to be descendants in USA.

If there are any Mulcahy's with Ballynagleragh links, we would love to hear from you. There is a rich history to learn of in the Australian branch of the family.





Monday 23rd May 2016, 10:57AM

Message Board Replies

  • Barb:

    Welcome to Ireland Reaching Out!

    I located the baptismal record for Catherine (see below) and she was baptized on February 9th 1844 in Ogonnelloe. Thady and Timothy were the same name. Here is a link to the parish register where baptismal records start in 1832 but marriages start in 1857. Let me do some additional digging.

    Roger McDonnell

    First name(s)CatherineLast nameMulcahyBirth year-Baptism year1844Baptism date09 Feb 1844ParishOgonnelloeDioceseKillaloeCountyClareCountryIrelandFather's first name(s)ThadyFather's last nameMulcahyMother's first name(s)MaryMother's last nameCostelloeRepositoryNational Library of IrelandNational Library of Ireland link

    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Monday 23rd May 2016, 07:30PM
  • Good morning and thank you Roger,

    This Catherine is the one we believe is ours. We have her siblings John (1841), Ellen (1849), Roger (1853) and Timothy (1857) from the baptismal records. We have an obit for Roger in USA which indicates her other siblings and that Catherine was in Aust. We have a record of a brother John (1843) who lived, married Maria Moloney (no record of marriage here) and died in Aust. He had 4 daughters, 2 died in childhood. 

    A dilemma is, that there was another Catherine Mulcahy born 2 Feb 1845 to Martin Mulcahy and Mary Flanedy. No siblings can be found in the baptismal records.

    We believe our Catherine is the the first one, the evidence while 'circumstantial', is persuasive. It would be good however to be sure. 

    We have probably exhausted all the online records (incl and are currently slogging through microfiche for more detailed Griffiths info and also Wills. We have reached out to our USA cousins with some limited success.

    We are working on tracing the lineage in Ireland in the hope that there might be an oral history within the family who stayed at home in Ireland. 

    We have a strong oral history of Catherine having a brother Patrick in Aust before her arrival - but cannot find him. 

    A difficulty we have had in Aust is we cannot find a marriage record for Catherine, neither civil or church record. Yes we do believe she would have married. We know of some who 'jumped the broomstick' and others who were married in a hotel - no church at hand. We suspect however that our Catherine would have married in a church and the records have simply been lost.

    We have studied Patrick O'Brien's book 'Looking over my shoulder' and are immersing ourselves in the history of the parish and the townland and have a strong sense of how it was for our ancestors. And of course we have a solid history of the family here.

    So we are trying to fill in the blank spots. Is it the right Catherine Mulcahy? What of other family (incl cousins) who were here, esp brother Patrick? Were there comings and goings with USA? What happened to the family in Ireland in these times?

    I don't know if you can help us with any of this, especially the first and last of these questions Roger. But your help is mightily appreciated, thank you.




    Tuesday 24th May 2016, 11:05PM
  • My family hired a Clare genealogist last year.  The records show that  my great-grandfather's sister, Catherine Curtin of Ballynagleragh, married James Mulcahy of Ballyhurley in 1862.  So many Mulcahy's appear in our genealogy report and they are likely related to your family.  Here is some info from the report:

    A witness to Catherine Curtin and James Mulcahy's marriage was Martin Mulcahy from Ballyhurley.  

    Many Mulcahy's also appear as sponsors at the baptisms of some of their children:  

    Their daughter Mary Mulcahy (1st child)  was baptized in 1863 and the sponsors were Tim & Catherine Mulcahy

    Their daughter Bridget Mulcahy (3rd child), baptized in 1865, was sponsored by James & Mary Mulcahy

    Their son Thomas (9th child) was baptized in 1876, sponsored by Patrick Mulcahy & Margaret O'Connor

    Their daughter Anne, baptized in 1877, was sponsored by John Burke & K. Mulcahy

    Also, my great grandfather's half-sister, Ellen O'Connor married Michael Mooney in 1884.  Records show the witnesses were Patrick Mooney and Mary Mulcahy.  



    Saturday 4th Jun 2016, 02:07AM
  • Hello,

    My grandfather, Patrick Mulcahy, was born in Ballyhurly, Ogonnelloe in 1878.  His parents, John Mulcahy and Mary Brann, married in the Parish of  Ogonnolloe 08 Feb 1861.  They had 12 children and all were baptized in Ogonnolloe as well.  Of course, all the children had names similar to the ones in the earlier posts above - James, Martin, Catherine, Mary, Patrick.  Their sponsors at Baptism were also Mulcahy, Costelloe, Moloney etc.  

    I visited there a few times over the past years.  Ballyhurly and Ballynagleragh are two townlands sitting side by side.  None of my Mulcahys remain in the area.  I did meet and speak to James Mulcahy from Ballynagleragh, but he had no idea if or how the two Mulcahy families were connected.  He put me in touch with his uncle, a catholic priest living in Florida, USA.  I spoke with Fr. Sean Mulcahy who grew up in Ballynagleragh but has no knowledge of the connection either.  He is in his 80s now and retired from active ministry.

    Several of our Mulcahys emigrated to New York including my grandfather, his brother Michael and at least three sisters.

    Many of my ancestors are buried in The HIll Cemetery in Ogonnolloe. There are also several other Mulcahy headstones in that small graveyard.

    Hope to someday find the connection between the families, and also learn more about those that stayed in Ireland.

    Good luck,





    Friday 30th Dec 2016, 10:15PM
  • Hullo distant cousins Mulcahy,

    We have since confirmed through DNA testing, that Catherine Mulcahy (b1844), daughter of Thady and Mary Costello is indeed our great grandmother. Further, thanks to the DNA tsts, we have confired Catherine's siblings that went to USA (detailed above). However, we are still in the dark about the brother Patrick. The good news is that the correspondence between distant cousins in the USA has drawn this branch of the Mulcahy family closer together.

    With DNA testing it is possible to 'recreate' the genes of a branch of a family, however this requires a number of different members of a family to be tested, to eliminate and match the genes. That is an exciting development and will help identify further cousins...

    Good luck S E Curtin and Peg, it would be wonderful to be able to recreate the relationships of our forebears of whom we are rightly proud.




    Saturday 31st Dec 2016, 10:19AM
  • Hi Barb,

    Thanks for your quick reply to my post.  I've been thinking and talking about DNA testing for some time.  This year for Christmas, our daughter decided to push me into doing the testing by gifting Ancestry DNA kits to me and to my husband.  We have just completed the test and will be dropping it in the mail today.  Ancestry informs us that it will take 6-8 weeks to complete the testing and have the results to us.  It should be interesting to see what connections I can make with the results. I'll let you know!

    Best wishes for a Happy and Healthy New Year.





    Saturday 31st Dec 2016, 02:59PM
  • Dear Barb & Peg:


    I have been following your posts on Ireland Reaching Out and am delighted to see that you have made progress.  There is a local person in the Ogonnelloe area who has helped others through Ireland Reaching Out in tracing in the area.  If you are interested, I will make contact with him.  Let me know.  Happy New Year to both of you.  Please let me know if you need any assistance or have any questions. 


    Kind regards,


    Tulla Parish Liaison.

    Tulla Clare, IrelandXO Volunteer

    Saturday 31st Dec 2016, 04:30PM
  • Hiya Peg and Jane,

    Thanks for your responses so promptly.

    First Jane:

    Thank you Jane for your kind offer. We are especially interested in any oral history. It seems that there was communication amongst the family after the initial diaspora to Aust and to USA. We know that our direct descendants sold the farm in Ballynagleragh and left Clare but we hope that there are stories still. In particular we would like to know of any Patrick Mulcahy that would fit oral history at our Aust end. Also, there was an Annie Mulcahy from Killaloe who my great grandmother considered as close as a sister. It seems all the Mulcahy's made one grand family. I or my cousin Mick Livy will be in touch with you directly.

    Now Peg:

    First DNA - when you get your info from Ancestry, you will also get a list of people whose DNA is a close match to you. We may or not be on your list. However, there is a website called GEDmatch where you can upload your 'raw data' (you can download this from ancestry). The GEDmatch is a free site which then allows you to match your data against anyone else on the site. There are multitudes because it is not only Ancestry who do the DNA testing. We can find each other there and actually see which parts we match...there is also a Mulcahy DNA group - but I don't believe there are any Mulcahy's from our parish there.

    Now, some good info for you. My cousin Mick Livy has been researching your Mulcahy's too. This is what he can tell you. There were two Mulcahy families in Ballyhurley, your direct ancestors and the ancestors of a Martin Mulcahy who is buried at the Melbourne General cemetery.

    This is what Mick quotes from :  "There were two families of the Mulcahys in Ballyhurly at this time Jim and Martin (brothers). Jim was succeeded by his son John, Martin by his son Jimmy. Jimmy died and his family emigrated to Australia. John is succeeded by his son Martin who is without issue." This information was from Sara (Sarah) Mulcahy who was recorded as part of an Ireland wide school intiative whereby school children were asked to speak to people about the local and family history and the local customs. This initiative occurred in the 1930s I think from memory. It is a rich source of information, but can be a painstaking process to read through it all to get the small nuggets of info.

    To find Sara(h) Mulcahy, from , click on 'people', enter Mulcahy, enter Clare: there are 3 references to Sara.

    To find Ballyhurley Mulcahy's, from, click on 'people', enter P F Lynch, enter Clare: there is the quote above and other bits and pieces. (P F Lynch was the school teacher at the time who was organising the oral history exercise).

    Now, it gets confusing. Here is the research my cousin Mick did for you - based on the site Duchas I believe:

    "The John mentioned by Sara Mulcahy on the duchas site, married Mary Brann. 


    The Jimmy mentioned was baptised as Timothy. Timothy married Bridget McMahon in 1867. They had 2 children Martin baptised 1868 and Bridget baptised 1870. Timothy died in 1870.


    Timothy's widow Bridget married Thomas Malone in 1872. Bridget and Thomas emigrated to Australia about 1880 with Bridget's 2 children born to her and Timothy Mulcahy plus 4 children born to Bridget and Thomas Malone."


    Mick spent quite a bit of time trying to untangle this Ballyhurley Mulcahy mess, he is quite an expert at disentangling our families. I get quite dizzy at it all because while they were separate families, they were obviously very much one large Mulcahy mob in practicality. with the diaspora it sometimes seems that even if you weren't a direct family member, if you were a Mulcahy from Clare in Australia in the 1850s, you were as good as family.


    Wouldn't it be nice to be able to recreate the families of that time and the lives they lived...






    Wednesday 4th Jan 2017, 12:23AM
  • Hi Barb,

    I just recently got the results from Ancestry DNA and I've also uploaded it to GEDmatch.  So far, I have not had any luck making any new connections with anyone.  The only ones I can confirm are with 2nd and 3rd cousins that I have already connected with through Ancestry or through other people.  Since I have just uploaded the raw DNA results, I'm hoping that it won't be long before I learn more.  (Right now, I'm still trying to learn how to work with DNA)

    My GEDmatch kit # is A106584.  Perhaps you might have some luck in finding a connection.  If so, please let me know. Hopefully, we'll find some new information/connections along the way.


    Good luck,




    Tuesday 4th Apr 2017, 03:26PM
  • Hi Peg,

    It's back to the drawing board. I did a 'one to one' comparison with your GedMatch code (mine is: A076749) and a basic comparison shows zilch compared with mine.

    I believe once the dna goes back 4 generations, it can become rather diluted. Of course, if we were male and had our x chromosomes identified, then we would be able to trace the male lineage.

    Our best bet would be if a male Mulcahy from our area had the dna test I suppose,





    Wednesday 5th Apr 2017, 03:51AM
  • Hi Barb,

    I, too, was hoping that we would find a match to connect the Mulcahy families.  I am still convinced that they are all related since they all lived in such close proximity. However, it seems to be so far back that it is difficult to confirm.  We'll just have to keep trying.

    Have you ever travelled to Co. Clare?  The area that we "share" with our families is in a beautiful location with many of the farmlands overlooking the Loch Derg.  We've been there several times and have had the wonderful opportunity to walk through the old ruins of the farmhouse where my grandfather, Patrick Mulcahy, was born and raised.

    Good luck with your continued searching.

    All the best,



    Wednesday 5th Apr 2017, 03:27PM

    Dear Peg & Barb:  thank you both for keeping this thread alive!  I will wait to hear from you, Barb or your cousin, Mick.  You can contact me at:  

    As to DNA testing, I will throw my two cents in:  it is correct that after 4-5 generations, the DNA can be very diluted.  The key is to try to test against a number of potential cousins at a slightly lower level (instead of 7 cM, drop to 6).  I have made a family connection that I knew existed on paper confirmed through DNA. If either of you want the local contact that I have, let me know.  All the best,  Jane 

    Jane Halloran Ryan

    Thursday 6th Apr 2017, 08:48AM
  • Hi Peg,

    When we get too big to be family, we become clan don't we? Of course we are distant cousins, just a bit too I don't feel discouraged. We can continue to build the picture of our people and take pride in them.

    Hi Jane,

    Thanks for touching base. Mick and I were using a different email address to the one you quote here (tulla@etc) I'll send you the emails now to the email above.




    Sunday 9th Apr 2017, 01:25AM
  •  Hi Barb,

    I live in Chicago, USA and recently started tracing my ancestry online. Thady Mulcahy and Mary Costello are my 3rd Great-Grandparents. I found a VERY helpful piece of information on  It's a 1904 summary/obituary of Martin Mulcahy's life who was a brother to Catherine/Kate Mulcahy and a Patrick Mulcahy. It states that a brother Patrick was living in Nebraska and Kate was in Australia. No married name given for Kate. Perhaps she did not get married? I was unable to track down any other solid information about her or Patrick. In Martin's obituary from the Chicago Tribune he was referred to as P.J. Mulcahy which returned some hits on in Nebraska and Chicago, but nothing I could confirm as being the right guy. I was unable to find an obituary for Patrick or Catherine. ....See below for a copy-paste of the info from


    Name:Martin Mulcahy

    Full Text:Mulcahy, Martin, Feb. 4, at his resid., 2836 - 5th ave. He was born Nov. 11, 1840 in Parish Ogonolloe, Co. Clare and was the eldest of nine children of Timothy and Mary Mulcahy, nee Costello, five of whom survive their brother--Lieut. Roger Mulcahy of the Chicago Police, Patrick, a resident of Nebraska, Mrs. Ellen Joyce, a resident of Clay Co., NE, Dennis, who resides on the old homestead in Co. Clare, and Kate Mulcahy who is at present in Australia. Mr. Mulcahy came to Chicago in 1867 and engaged in the teaming business at which he continued until 1875 when he engaged in the wholesale and retail wine and spirits trade. In 1871 he married in this city, Mary Walsh who survives him. No children were born to them. He made two visits to Ireland, one in June, 1885 and another in 1890. His death came as a result of pneumonia. He was for years the President of Div. #17, A.O.H.. The funeral occured from St. James Church to Mt. Olivet. -Feb. 13, 1904

    Source:Chicago Citizen, 1883-1909, Obituaries and Marriage Notices


    I am interested in learning more about Dennis. I found a Dennis on who was born in 1848 and married to Margaret. In 1901 they lived in Ogonnelloe with two children (Mary and Timothy). But! I can't confirm if this is the Dennis who is the son of Thady Mulcahy and Mary Costello.


    Please let me know if you've found any new information on Patrick or Catherine since you posted last April :)


    Your cousin ;-)



    Wednesday 28th Nov 2018, 05:02AM
  • Hey cuz! Woohoo!

    Greetings from Oz.

    This is a qucik reply to say hi and that you are on the right trail. I have info on your fellow US cousins and some history stuff to share. It's all a bit messy though because I am so busy with my other work, I get little tine for my family history passion...until sothings prods at me again ;-)

    It's be easier if you could contact me at:, then I could send you some photos too.

    Have you seen this?…

    I submitted it ages ago. A fellow researcher (Mick Livy) is checking for me if I got the Mulcahy siblings correct. I think we got info after it was submitted.

    It is so good to hear from you, looking forward to the email in my in box.



    Melbourne, Victoria 


    Thursday 29th Nov 2018, 10:15PM

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