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Looking for information on the Porter family who lived on the Isle of Inch, which is situated in Lough Swilly Co. Donegal.

James Porter married Elizabeth Ramsay abt. 1820 possibly in the Burt Presbyterian Church as the Inch Church was not built until 1830. From this marriage there were eight known children born, James b1824, Elizabeth b1825, Ann b1826, Crawford b1828, Martha b1831, Robert b1832, Samuel b1833 & Isabella b1836. The last two immigrated to Australia in 1854 & the remaining children immigrated to Philadelphia in 1849-51. The only child to remain on Inch was Robert Porter who married Jane Fleming in 1851. One of their children, Thomas stayed on Inch & his family settled there.

Other Porter names found to be living on Inch were - Alexander 1766 religious census & John Griffiths valuation. All the above lived in the town land of Carrickanee.

Any information or help would be appreciated.



Friday 29th Mar 2013, 01:35AM

Message Board Replies



    Thank you for your message.

    Have you tried looking in church records for more information?

    Presbyterian registers are held in three main locations:

    PRONI has microfilm copies of almost all registers in Northern Ireland and also lists of records held by the Presbyterian Historical Society.

    You could also check for record of the family in the land acts pertaining to Ireland in the 19th century. There are two:

    The Tithe Applotment Books (1823-1838) found at

    and Griffith?s Valuation (1848-1864) found at

    Civil registration began in 1864, so you should be able to find any births, deaths, marriages that occurred in Thomas? family in these records. Civil records are available from the General Register?s Office in Dublin. Here is their website:

    You can search the indexes to these records online at:

    Have you tried looking in the 1901/1911 census records to see if you can find any information on family still in the area at the time? These are available here:

    Some other websites that you may find useful are:

    The National Library of Ireland

    The National Archives UK ? genealogy search:

    The Public Records Office of Northern Ireland

    Genealogy Links:

    Family Search:

    Alternatively you could try contacting the Donegal Ancestry Centre however a fee may apply. Here is their email:

    Please be patient - as our programme has only begun to rollout across the island of Ireland and volunteers in some areas may not yet be organized.

    Kind regards,

    Genealogy Support

    Thursday 16th May 2013, 10:54AM
  • Hello,

    Your message is intriguing. In 1866, my great-great grandfather John Porter left the Isle of Inch as a young man with his wife Rebecca and young son James (age 5 at the time). They immigrated to the United States. My great-great grandmother's maiden name was Cresswell. They settled first in Philadelphia, and then three years later they left for Iowa. After working as a field hand and renting land, John eventually bought some land of his own in 1873. 

    Your message does not mention John, regardless, the time frame and mention of Philadelphia caused me to wonder if there is any connection (perhaps cousins?). Perhaps records of John are incomplete too.

    Best of luck to you in your search. Please respond to this message if you need any more information...perhaps there is a connection.


    Clark Porter



    Clark Porter

    Thursday 10th Apr 2014, 06:06PM
  • Clark,

    I realize that your message was about 2 years ago, but I find what you said interesting to me. I have had genetic testing of my paternal line, findings are that I am from a rare Haplogroup A M-31 and have genetic relatives currently living in the area of Buncrana, County Donegal. I do not know exactly how I am related to this Irish Porter family, but I am in contact with them to eventually figure out the relation.

    All that I know about my Porter ancestors is that a John Porter who was born in Ireland immigrated to the US sometime between 1860 and 1883. He had a son, John Porter, born in New York in 1883. This John Porter that was born in 1883 is my great grandfather and was living on his own at age 17 in Brooklyn, NY. I do not know much more about these 2 John Porters and would hope that there might be a Philadelphia connection due to the proximity of Philly to Brooklyn, NY. Let me know if anything rings true and there may have been some part of the family living in NY at some time. I get thousands of hits on the name John Porter when doing research and I cannot discern which, if any are my relations.


    John Porter

    J Porter

    Thursday 17th Mar 2016, 04:46PM
  • Hello John,

    The Philadelphia connection is interesting. The time frames and names you mention closely align with my family's history, but not quite. None of our predecessors went to New York, and instead headed to Iowa. The only thing I can surmise is that there must have been a lot of Porters on the Isle of Inch. Perhaps many were distant cousins and beckoned others to follow to Philadelphia. 

    Best of luck in your search. 


    Clark Porter


    Clark Porter

    Saturday 19th Mar 2016, 03:59AM
  • Dear darylp123,

    I realize that your post is very old, but I am searching for information on the following families; McDowell (Baylet townland)  Fleming (Drum), Gilmour(Drum), Cresswell (?).  I have limited information (1852 to 2003) from the Baptismal Register of the Congregation (Presbyterian) of Inch.  There are quiite a few Porters in this record; the earliest being the birth of Rachel Cresswell on Aug 4 1852 at Baylet.  Parents were Henry Cresswell and Rachel Porter.  Martha Porter, daughter of Robert Porter of Ballyboe and Jane Fleming; born on Jan 13, 1853.  You may have found this information by now, but, if not, I would be happy to share information about the several Porters in this record if you are interested.

    Best regards,

    Gretchen Darlington

    Gretchen Darlington

    Friday 14th May 2021, 11:27PM
  • Hi Gretchen

                        Contact me on email



    Saturday 15th May 2021, 11:17PM
  • Hi both Darylp123 and Gretchen,

    I know this post is quite old but I think I have information for both of you. My dad recently sent over some digging up on our Porter side of the family from that area and in my family tree there is a Jane Fleming who married Robert Porter, all living in Carickanee. Definitely happy to share what I have if you're still on this post!


    Wednesday 13th Jul 2022, 10:53PM

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