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Hi all,

My 3G grandmother Sarah McGill was born in Donegal about 1805 and I believe possibly in Drumholm/Drumhome. She married my 3G grandfather Neil Kelly 10 May 1833 in Scotland (he was born in Clonmany). I am really having a hard time reading the priest's handwriting. The parish she was born in starts with a "D" and I think the closest one I've found is Drumhome. I have found very little in terms of records on her and her family. Her parents were John and Eunice "Unity" McGill both born around 1782, probably in Donegal. I do not know Eunice's maiden name. I am sure Sarah had a sister Mary McGill born about 1801 in Donegal. Sarah and Neil, Sarah's parents and Mary immigrated to Penn Yan, Yates County, NY (not at the same time). John and Eunice are found living next door to Neil and Sarah on the 1850 US census. Mary married Arthur McCartney in Penn Yan. He was also from Ireland but I do not have a specific location for him. As far as I know there is no connection between the families going back to Ireland. I do not know if the other McGill family members lived in Scotland prior to coming to the US or if they lived anywhere else before settling in Penn Yan. Other potential siblings for Sarah McGill, all born around 1800 in Donegal would be Margaret, Edward and John. I don't have any documentation of them and don't know if they remained in Ireland or immigrated, if they even exist. I have documentation and DNA matches for Mary. I believe John and Eunice lived in Penn Yan first and then Neil and Sarah followed. I don't know why they chose Penn Yan. I don't know if there was any connection to family or friends that drew the McGills there.

I'm hoping someone can help me out with a little direction since I have not had much luck with the records. Also if there is another parish in Donegal that starts with a "D" and looks similar to Drumhome I would be very happy to learn of it! I and my sister did Ancestry DNA tests. We have many matches that reflect origins in Donegal but have not specifically linked any matches with the McGills other than some of Mary's descendants in the US. 

We plan to travel to Ireland in the next year or so and plan to include a visit to Donegal. My sister has visited Ireland twice but has not been to Donegal. This will be my first visit. We would like to visit places where our ancestors once lived as much as possible.

Many thanks,



Wednesday 9th Aug 2023, 06:08PM

Message Board Replies

  • Beth:

    There are five civil parishes in Co. Donegal which start with D. See below. I looked at the Tithe and Griffiths listings and see no evidence of McGills in Drumhome. That does not mean that Sarah was not from Drumhome. Can you attach the record?






    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Thursday 10th Aug 2023, 12:17AM
  • I'm not sure how to post an image. I tried twice and failed. I assumed the priest meant church parish and not civil parish but perhaps I shouldn't have done that. Thank you!


    Thursday 10th Aug 2023, 08:39PM
  • 2nd request for Clonmany generated.

    Whelanmg, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘︎

    Tuesday 29th Aug 2023, 10:25AM

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