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My grandfather Richard Foster was born in Dunkineely 26 January 1880.  He later went to Scotland.

His mother was Ellen Foster and her parents were Patrick Foster and Margaret Baskin who married 8 September 1864 in Ardara, Donegal.

I can find little information on Ellen and I think she may have been unmarried.

Can anyone help?


Wednesday 17th Apr 2013, 01:44PM

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  • I found this 1901 census record for a Patrick and Margaret Foster in Calhame townland in Killaghtee civil parish which is the same parish for Dunkineely. I'm wondering if they are your great-grandparents.They have a son named Richard (age is 28) listed. I've also attached the 1911 census record for the family. Richard is now shown as 46. I was not able to locate Ellen Foster.

    Roger McDonnell

    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Wednesday 17th Apr 2013, 03:19PM
  • I also located a birth index record for a Richard Foster in 1880 registered in the Donegal district (which is the district for Killaghtee parish. If you don't have the birth record, you may want to write to the GRO

    Fill out their form, provide the year, registration district and volume and page number.

    Roger McDonnell


    First Name: Richard

    • Last Name: Foster
    • Year: 1880
    • Registered Quarter/Year:
    • Registration District: Donegal
    • Volume: 2
    • Page: 36
    • Mother's Maiden Name (Original):
    • Country: Ireland






    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Wednesday 17th Apr 2013, 03:25PM
  • Hi,

    I found a number of children born to Patrick Foster and Margaret Baskin on

    You have to register with this site, you can search for free but you have to pay to view a record.

    The children that I found were:

    • Ellen 1865
    • James 1865
    • Richard 1867
    • George 1874
    • Mary Ann 1874
    • Margaret 1876

    As I said to see each record and get exact dates, sponsors etc. you will have to pay per view.

    I also found the record of Richard's birth in 1880.

    Here are a few websites that you may want to check and contact -

    Donegal Genealogy Resources -

    Donegal Library Service -

    I wish you all the best with your research.

    Kind regards,

    Eimer Shea

    Wednesday 17th Apr 2013, 06:47PM
  • My sincerest thanks for your speedy reply to my inquiry.  Patrick and Margaret Foster would actually have been my Gr Gr grandparents.  My grandfather Richard would have been the son of their daughter Ellen, possibly named after Ellen's brother Richard.  Ellen is the mystery.  Thank you so very much for your interest and help!

    Margaret Corse (nee Foster) 


    Wednesday 17th Apr 2013, 07:48PM
  • Hi:  Sincerest thanks for your speedy reply to my message.  It is very kind of you to find the information for me.

    Ellen would have been my gr grandmother but as she was born in 1865 and my grandfather was born in 1880, she would only have been 14/15.  

    I am still hoping to find out what became of her after 1880 but can find no record anywhere.

    Many, many thanks again for your considerable help.

    Margaret Corse (nee Foster).


    Wednesday 17th Apr 2013, 07:55PM
  • I have just had disappointing news - I have been researching the wrong Ellen Foster!  After 2 years of finding lots of information on the wrong Ellen, I now find that my gr grandmother Ellen died in childbirth when my grandfather Richard was born.  Her death certificate says the information was given by the coroner so no family is named.  She died in January 1880 and age given is 30. She was a spinster. I cannot find a birth certificate so have absolutely no clue as to any family members.  On my grandfather's marriage certificate he gave the name Margaret as his mother despite the fact that the name Ellen appears on his birth certificate.  Could she have been a family member?  Grandfather was born in Dunkineely and I visited there last October and found a man who was related Ellen Foster but it turned out to be the wrong Ellen.  Now there are no Fosters living there.  I have hit a brick wall!  Can anyone help?


    Monday 25th Apr 2016, 11:01AM
  • I think you have the correct Ellen Foster. The death record likely has a mistake. If you look at the message above from Eimer Shea, Ellen was born in 1865 which means she was 15 and unmarried when she had Richard in 1880. The birth record for Richard shows the informant as Margaret which was the mother of Ellen and if Ellen died in child birth then Margaret raised him which explains why he showed Margaret as his mother. The Fosters lived in Calhame townland in Killaghtee civil parish.



    Name:Richard FosterDate of Birth:26-Jan-1880
    Registration Date:20-Feb-1880Address:CalhameParish/District:DUNKINEELYGender:MaleCountyCo. Donegal
    Denomination:Civil Record
    Father:Not RecordedMother:Ellen FosterOccupation:Not Recorded
    Sponsor 1 /
    Informant 1:Margaret Foster…

    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Tuesday 26th Apr 2016, 12:20AM
  • This may be long - sorry.  First let me designate Ellen 1 (the person I traced and now appears to be wrong) and Ellen 2 who I think may be the right one but can't find any trace of.

    When I went to Dunkineely, I found a gentleman who was related to Ellen 1 and I got the info from him that she had emigrated to America.  I was able to get much information about her and her life there, her marriage and names and dates of her children.  I was even able to find info on her Canadian-born husband and found a picture of him.  I was VERY pleased.  Then the gent I'd met in Dunkineely emailed me and said I had the wrong Ellen and that Ellen 2 was actually my gr grandmother as he'd found her death certificate.  At first it was confusing as her death was recorded as being several days before the birth of my grandfather.  This was explained by there being an inquest into her death and the coroner was the informant and it took a few days before a Margaret Foster registered the birth of my grandfather Richard.  In order to establish anything, I need to find some info on Ellen 2 but I can find nothing.  The death cert says she died in 1880 and was 30 but I can find no trace of her around 1850.  No relatives named except Margaret Foster who registered Richard's birth.  I simply can't think of where to look now.  

    I sincerely thank you for your reply but need more info on Ellen 2 before I can decide which Ellen is the right one. 




    Thursday 28th Apr 2016, 06:32PM
  • Margaret:

    I don't think there are any RC church records around 1850. I think the parish would be Ardara and their records start in 1867. 

    You may want to consider autosomal DNA testing. Maybe you will match someone with Foster connections that might eventually help unravel your mystery.


    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Friday 29th Apr 2016, 05:51PM

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