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I am seeking any information about David John Woods b.  23/01/1877 in Carrigans Co. Monaghan. His parents were William Woods and Emily Buchanan Woods. It appears that David had an unnamed sister b. 28.3.1870 in Glaslough, Co. Monaghan. Her parents were also William Woods and Emily Buchanan. 


The 1901 census shows a Sarah Jane Boyd M/S Woods residing in Harrington Street, Glasgow, with her husband Robert Clarke Boyd, their children, and a ‘boarder’ David Woods age 24. (Age 24 in 1901 gives the year of birth as 1877) Only a suggestion but David and Sarah may have been brother and sister. Sarah Jane married Robert Clarke Boyd in Glasgow in 1895.


The 1911 census has the same Boyd family (without David, although I have cause to believe he was still resident there) at 104 Gairbraid Ave, Glasgow, the same address where my dad was born illegitimally in 1909.


The death of Sarah Jane Boyd in 1960, in Glasgow, age 90, (year of birth 1870) reveals her parents as William Woods and Emily Woods, M/S Buchanan. (see above)  Further evidence that David and Sarah were brother and sister. 


My dad was born illegitimally at 104 Gairbraid Ave. Glasgow in January 1909,  and I know that a David Woods was his father.  (paternity found by decree of court). David left Glasgow in May 1911on the SS Athenia, sailed to Canada and disembarked in Montreal. He was never heard from again.

My dad was adopted by the Simpson family. 


However, I have David John Woods, a batchelor, who died 4/10/1912 in Ballanagall. Co. Monaghan, age 35 (Age 35 in 1912 gives year of birth as 1877)  Present at the time of death was a James Boyd. I have no further evidence and this David may be a red herring! 


What I don’t know:


Is the David John Woods b.1877 in Carrigans, Co. Monaghan, the same David John Woods that died in 1912 in Ballanagall, Co. Monaghan?


Is he the same David Woods that lived in Glasgow and left for Canada in 1911?


Is he the father of my father? 


Why would anybody travel to Canada in 1911 and return just over a year later? 

I have no idea as to David’s religion and have been unable to find a grave. 

I realise it’s quite a complicated set of names, dates and places but any help would be really appreciated.





Friday 4th Jun 2021, 05:42PM

Message Board Replies

  • Andy:

    I don't think the David Woods who died in 1912 in Bellanagall is a red herring.

    James Boyd's ( the informant at the 1912 death) parents were John Boyd and Elizabeth. Here is their 1911 census record…

    The maiden name of Elizabeth Boyd was Clarke which is the same as the middle name of Robert Clarke Boyd who married Sarah.

    I'm sure if you check the 1895 marriage record, the father of Robert was John.

    I don't know if David Woods actually left for Canada or not or if it was a ruse. Possibly he did go to Canada and was ill and returned to Ireland. Seems like you should be able to check incoming ship data in Canada.

    See third record for the 1870 marriage of William Woods and Emily Buchanan. They were Church of Ireland.…

    Let me know what questions you have.

    Roger McDonnell


    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Friday 4th Jun 2021, 10:57PM

    Hi Roger

    Many thanks for your work on my quest to find my grandfather. It seem pretty clear that The David Woods I mention is the man I seek.

    I have a newspaper obituary, that I can’t seem to copy and paste on here, that tells us that David returned to his home after spending the last 18 years in Scotland, and had returned due to illness. More convincing evidence I think.

    David definitely travelled to Canada and I have a copy of the ships manifest showing him disembarking in Montreal. He must have been there about a year before returning. Apparently not uncommon for folk to return home for various reasons.


    Once again many thanks

    Andrew Simpson

    Blackpool Lancashire









    Sunday 6th Jun 2021, 09:04AM

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