ML# 213 on the McCabe List
Queen's County (Laois), Ireland, to Nepean Township, Upper Canada
Later to Venosta, Gatineau Valley, Quebec
also the surname LAWLESS
Painting by Ruth McMillan in 1976
Shows the Head of the Rideau Canal Locks in Ottawa, Canada in 1893
January 24, 2002:
I was looking on the internet for my great great grandfather Darby
Kealey Born 1792 in Ireland married twice 1st unknown. they had three
children. 2nd Elizabeth Mulligan born 1792 in Ireland. We do not know
for certain what became of Darby & Elizabeth after 1851. He sailed to
Canada from Sligo Ireland in the early 1800's with two brothers or
I've started a new page for your GGGrandfather, Darby Kealey.
He may have been a brother to James Kealey (see link below). According to the
McCabe List (1829), both James and Darby came from Queen's County originally.
Queen's County is now called Laois and is in central Ireland. It's interesting
that Darby sailed from Sligo.
Darby's name is recorded at various times in the records of Notre Dame Basilica
in downtown Ottawa. He was a contemporary of some of my ancestors and he may be
buried in Notre Dame Cemetery. I'll keep an eye out for him. Maybe we'll discover
the name of his first wife.
There are other researchers interested in the Kealeys and you may hear from some of them.
Let me know if we get any further info on Darby and his family.
Thanks and Good Luck!
... Al Lewis
Note: See also James Kealey who may be a brother to Darby
and also Daniel Kealey / Cayley / Caley
E-mail Allan Lewis
March 21, 2002:
I was interested in your posting to the Bytown or Bust website regarding Darby Kealey.
The Kealeys are related to my family through the Lawlesses (see below, dated March 21, 2003).
I'm trying to find out if they are also related to my husband’s family (Mulligan), but haven't
been able to find out just who Elizabeth Mulligan is – and another Elizabeth Mulligan shows
up in the Kealey line a little further down.
I’d be interested in sharing some information. I have quite a bit on the Lawless / Lawlis
family and quite a bit on the Mulligans (my husband’s side) as well.
April 14, 2002:
Al, last night I went to the library and photocopied from the Nepean Census books some
information on the Kealey (and variations) family. I came home and put it into the computer.
Would you like me to send it to you and if so, what is the best format?
Thanks to Lorraine for transcribing the following info and sending it along for us all!
Census Family Given House Age Household
Year Name Name Number Position
1852 KALEY Maria 221 25
1852 KALEY Michael 6 14
1852 KEALY Ann 228 15 DO
1852 KEALY James 226 6
1852 KEALY James 365 7
1852 KELAY Darby 134 58 HEAD
1852 KELAY Elisabeth 134 34 WIFE
1852 KELAY Elisabeth 134 1
1852 KELAY Ellen 134 11
1852 KELAY James 134 13
1852 KELAY Joseph 134 2
1852 KELAY Martin 134 7
1852 KELAY Mary 134 15
1852 KELAY Michael 134 9
1852 KELAY Patrick 134 3
1852 KELLY Ann 145 7
1852 KELLY Ann 343 15
1852 KELLY Ann 350 14 DO
1852 KELLY Ann 352 17
1852 KELLY Bridged 139 54 WIFE
1852 KELLY Catherine 139 19
1852 KELLY Darby 352 56 HEAD
1852 KELLY Elisabeth 343 39
1852 KELLY Elisabeth 343 2
1852 KELLY Ellen 145 4
1852 KELLY James 343 39 LA
1852 KELLY Jeremiah 352 23
1852 KELLY John 64 39 LA
1852 KELLY John 139 54 HEAD
1852 KELLY John 145 9
1852 KELLY Margaret 343 9
1852 KELLY Mary 145 11
1852 KELLY Mary 352 15
1852 KELLY Mary J. 343 6
1852 KELLY Michael 321 20 DO
1852 KELLY Michael 352 19
1852 KELLY Patrick 145 43 HEAD
1852 KELLY Patrick 145 1
1852 KELLY Roderick 139 21
1852 KELLY Sarah 343 12
1852 KELLY Winifred 145 34 WIFE
1861 KEALEY Martin 90 60 HEAD
1861 KEALEY Martin 90 18
1861 KEALEY Mary 268 15
1861 KEALEY Briget 388 41 WIFE
1861 KEALEY Briget 388 15
1861 KEALEY Elisabeth 250 49 WIFE
1861 KEALEY Elisabeth 250 10
1861 KELLY Jeremiah 579 0
1861 KELLY John 72 44
1861 KELLY John 318 49 HEAD
1861 KELLY John 318 1
1861 KELLY John 619 41
1861 KELLY Margret 107 59
1861 KELLY Mary 577 25 WIFE
1861 KELLY Mary 577 1
1861 KELLY Michael 579 32 HEAD
1861 KELLY Patrick 230 39 HEAD
1861 KELLY Thomas 230 0
1861 KIELLY Daniel 619A 10
1861 KIELLY Elizabeth J 619A 19
1861 KIELLY Hugh 619A 15
1861 KIELLY Margaret A 619A 20
1861 KEALEY Eliza 388 9
1861 KEALEY Ellen 250 19
1861 KEALEY Ellan 388 5
1861 KEALEY James 388 13
1861 KEALEY Jeremiah 250 59 HEAD Darby is a nickname for Jeremiah
1861 KEALEY Joseph 250 11
1861 KEALEY Margaret 388 11
1861 KEALEY Martin 250 15
1861 KEALEY Martin 388 44 HEAD
1861 KEALEY Martin 388 7
1861 KEALEY Michael 250 17
1861 KEALEY Patrick 250 13
1861 KEALY Margaret 493 16
1861 KEELY Aunby 560 1
1861 KEELY James 560 31 HEAD
1861 KEELY Margaret 560 29 WIFE
1861 KEELY Moses 560 5
1861 KEELY Nicholas 560 7
1861 KEELY Simon 560 3
1861 KELEY Ana 70 9
1861 KELEY Catherine 70 5
1861 KELEY Elen 70 26 WIFE
1861 KELEY James 70 39 HEAD
1861 KELEY Mary 70 5
1861 KELEY Mary 70 0
1861 KELEY Michael 70 11
1861 KELEY Sarah 70 3
1861 KELEY William 70 0
1861 KELLEY Bidy 113 1 (Bridget)
1861 KELLEY Catherine 113 27
1861 KELLEY Catherine 493 1
1861 KELLEY David 493 39
1861 KELLEY Edmond 493 3
1861 KELLEY John 113 69 HEAD
1861 KELLEY Margret 113 0
1861 KELLEY Margret 493 29
1861 KELLEY Patrick 493 5
1861 KELLEY Rody 113 29
1861 KELLY Ann 577 2
1861 KELLY Ann 579 22 WIFE
1861 KELLY Bridget 230 27 WIFE
1861 KELLY Bridget 318 32 WIFE
1861 KELLY Catherine 113 24
1861 KELLY Jeremiah 577 39 HEAD
1871 KEALEY Michael 268 23
1871 KEALEY Sarah 268 13
1871 KEALEY William 268 10
1871 KELLEY Ann 10 13
1871 KELLEY Ann 11 34 WIFE
1871 KELLEY James 11 1
1871 KELLEY Jeremiah 10 4
1871 KELLEY Jeremiah 11 10
1871 KELLEY John 10 8
1871 KELLEY Margaret 10 6
1871 KELLEY Margret 11 7
1871 KELLEY Mary 10 34 HEAD
1871 KELLEY Mary 10 10
1871 KELLEY Mary 11 3
1871 KELLEY Michael 11 48 HEAD
1871 KELLEY Patrick 11 9
1871 KELLEY Timothy 11 5
1871 KELLY Bridget 142 12
1871 KELLY Catherine 142 40 WIFE
1871 KELLY Francis 1 40 DO
1871 KELLY James 142 1
1871 KELLY John 267 64
1871 KELLY John 142 8
1871 KELLY Joseph 169 35
1871 KELLY Margaret 169 50
1871 KELLY Margret 142 10
1871 KELLY Richard 142 4
1871 KELLY Rodrick 142 46 HEAD
1871 KELLY Rodrick 142 5
1871 KELLY William 142 6
1871 KALEY Darby 32 77 HEAD
1871 KALEY Elizabeth 32 60 WIFE (Mulligan)
1871 KALEY Elizabeth 32 20
1871 KALEY Ellen 33 24 WIFE
1871 KALEY Joseph 32 21
1871 KALEY Julia Ann 34 23 WIFE
1871 KALEY Margret 34 4
1871 KALEY Martin 34 30 HEAD
1871 KALEY Mary 34 2
1871 KEALEY Annie 268 18
1871 KEALEY Bridget 90 54 WIFE
1871 KEALEY Catharine 268 15
1871 KEALEY Elizabeth 268 5
1871 KEALEY Elizabeth 90 21
1871 KEALEY Ellen 268 41 WIFE
1871 KEALEY Ellen 268 7
1871 KEALEY Ellen 90 16
1871 KEALEY Emily 268 10
1871 KEALEY Hugh 268 3
1871 KEALEY James 268 53 HEAD
March 21, 2003:
Dear Lorraine and others,
I was doing family research on the web and came across this reference to the Lawlesses.
Would you please forward and references etc to me about them.
I would appreciate it very much
December 15, 2004:
How could I find info for Joseph Kealey 1861, that is on your list (above).
I'm sure this is my husbands ancestor.
January 23, 2005:
New E-mail address for Lorraine:
April 3, 2005:
Just came across your messages about the McCabe List. I've been doing
research off and on for the past several years on the Darby Kealey
family. Darby was my G-G Grandfather, James my G-Grandfather and Will
was my grandfather. My father emigrated
to Chisholm, Minnesota, USA from Venosta, Quebec with his father Will around
1900. I have about 800 entries in my database, but am particularly
interested in where Darby came from in Ireland and where he is buried.
I've been in touch with Lloyd Kealey in Ottawa (is that your father,
Lorraine?) I would appreciate any information you can provide and
would be happy to share my information, which is an extension of Laurel
Doucette's Kealey Family History. Hoping to hear from you!
(My grandfather changed the spelling of our name from Kealey to Kealy)
Thanks for your e-mail regarding the early Kealey family in the Ottawa area.
According to the 1829 McCabe List, Darby came from Queen's County in Ireland.
He came from the parish of Mayo and the village or townland was called "Coulo" (spelling?).
Thanks for your prompt response, Al.
Please add my email and email address to your website. I'll be traveling to
Ireland in June and hope to do a little family research in Laois.
No one seems to know for certain where Darby is buried. In the local newspaper
(The Ottawa Citizen) March 4, 1872, page 2, column 4, I came across his death
notice as follows:
Death of Jeremiah Kealey, aged 80 years, on March 2, 1872. Funeral Service was at
St Joseph's Ottawa, on March 4, 1872.
In 1872 there was at least one multi-denominational cemetery in Ottawa and it is
likely he might have been buried there. It was in Sandy Hill. The problem is that
the cemetery apparently kept very poor records and was moved around the 1900's,
with the bodies being moved to either Notre Dame or Beechwood. There is only a
small list of names that are on record with respect to people moved, and Darby
wasn't on the list. I know all this because my GG Grandfather Hugh Byers died
in 1866 and the newspaper article indicated he was also buried in the downtown
Ottawa area and I have never found where, however, in trying to research I was
made aware of this cemetery.
You may want to get ahold of the record of Darby's funeral record at St Joseph's
to see if it yields any further information about his parents and burial.
Hope the above helps.
Kealey Genealogy Pals -
Just a note to share with you my glee at finding new info re: the Darby Kealey family.
First, from Al Lewis, the place in Ireland where he came from, and which I will try to
visit in June. (Laois County - villages of Clogh, Swan, and Wolfhill). And from the
Nepean census info provided by Lorraine - the entire Darby Kealey family (misspelled as
Kelay in the 1852 census) but Darby, his wife Elisabeth, and all their children - Mary,
James (my GGrandfather), Ellen, Michael, Martin, Patrick, Joseph, and Elisabeth,
with birth dates within 2 years of my previous information, all living in house #134.
What a breakthrough for me! So thanks for your help - I'll work at building on that
information and will share my findings with you.
November 23, 2005:
Thank you for forwarding me the emails about our great-great-great grandfather.
I'm going to respond to everyone on the list, in that we seem to have a mutual ancestor.
Jerimiah "Darby" Kealey and his first wife had Catherine Kealey, who married John Lawless.
They Had Michael Lawlis (sic), who married Mary Tucker. They had Francis Lawlis who
married Elizabeth Myles. They had Mary Lawlis who married William Shields and had me.
As you know, a few years ago I did some genealogical "digging" and wrote up a brief
family history. I haven't had time to get back to it (these things can be enormously
time consuming); there is much work to be done. But for what it's worth, here's what
I wrote about Darby. I won't attach the illustrations (they're nothing special, but
if anyone wants them, just email me).
Darby Kealey had three children by his first wife (her name is not known to us, but as
will be demonstrated it might have been Nash or Connolly): John, Catherine, and Thomas.
John and Catherine Kealey married John and Catherine Lawless in Canada. Catherine Kealey
and John Lawless were my great-great grandparents. Their father Darby’s first wife
died and he remarried Elizabeth Mulligan (born in Ireland in 1816, therefore 24 years
younger than her husband) and they had eight children between 1835 and 1849: Mary, James,
Ellen, Michael, Martin, Patrick, Joseph, and Elizabeth. Mary, Martin, and Elizabeth
died in 1894, 1894 and 1887 respectively. They are buried in the old cemetery in
Martindale, near Venosta. Their names are on the newly erected common stone (see the
illustration at the end of Chapter 3).
There is convincing evidence to indicate that Darby Kealey was one of Ottawa’s (that
is, Bytown’s) early settlers. It must be noted that his given name "Darby" is used
interchangeably with "Jeremiah"; both are ways of anglicizing the Irish name "Diarmada".
Thus, he sometimes appears as Jeremiah Kealey and at others as Darby Kealey. His
family name is sometimes spelled "Kealy" and "Keally".
There is a document in the National Archives of Canada that lists the people who worked
for the early lumber baron Philemon Wright (PW),(Author Index J-O, finding aid 542).
It indicates that Darby Kealey worked for Wright and is dated 14 December 1837.
Darby gave Nicholas Sparks and Family as a reference. As will be demonstrated later,
other evidence indicates that Darby was in Bytown in 1820, when his son Thomas was born.
Although I have not yet conducted the necessary archival research, it is quite possible
that he worked on the Rideau Canal. When it was completed in 1832 he seems, like many
of the labourers, to have turned to logging and later to farming.
Historians regard a lengthy, book-long poem, Recollections of Old Bytown by
William Pittman Lett, as a reliable primary source for life in early Bytown.
The poem itself is rather dreadful, using heavy Victorian language and going on for
thousands of lines of tortured rhyming couplets. But in the poem Lett, an early
resident of Bytown, recalls the people he knew in the town‘s earliest days. I
borrowed a copy from the library and discovered two lines (the spelling is Lett‘s):
And Martin, James, and Darby Keally,
From the land of the "Shillaly".
A few years ago I visited one of the Ottawa museums, one devoted to local history
(The Bytown Museum). I asked to speak to the curator and asked if she knew anything
about my great-great-great grandfather, Darby Kealey. She seemed interested in a
perfunctory way, as though she often encountered people looking for ancestors,
but when I happened to mentioned that Lett refers to him in his poem she seemed
genuinely impressed and later gave me an extra copy of the book which she had on hand.
It is ironic that the reference to Darby in the poem mentions a shillelagh (pronounced
"shi-LAY-lee"), for we know that he brought one with him from Ireland. Shillelaghs are
walking sticks that were originally made from oak that came from a forest near the
town of Shillelagh, County Wicklow, Ireland. The town is a short drive from James
Lawless’s Ferns and John Lawless’s Ballon. When the oak forest was cut down,
shillelaghs came to be made of blackthorn, an extremely hard wood with thorns. They
would be painted black, save for the head of the stick, which is the part that grows
beneath the ground. Although intended as a walking stick, a shillelagh was often used
as a convenient weapon. In surfing the net for the photo that appears to the left,
I actually came across a website that promotes "shillelagh fighting" as a Celtic
marshal art and has video clips demonstrating duelling techniques
Darby Kealey’s shillelagh was passed down through the generations until it came
into the possession of a distant cousin, the antique dealer Ken Lawless of Spencerville,
Ontario. Ken sent it to the Canadian Museum of Civilisation in Gatineau, Quebec, where
it remains. Like all museums, most of this one’s collection is stored away and is not
on display. One of these days I hope to contact the appropriate curator and see,
as well as photograph the object. I suspect that the curators will be delighted to
learn of its provenance, particularly in light of the McCabe list, which will be
Recent scholarship has brought to light something called the "McCabe List". John McCabe,
a genealogist, uncovered (in Ulster) a list of Irish immigrants who were living
in the eastern Ontario/western Quebec region in February, 1829. The list gives the
immigrants' names, town, village or townland of origin, parish, county, number of
people in their family, relatives in Ireland, and the name of a responsible person
who would vouch for their character (often a landlord).
In that Darby Kealey was said to be an early immigrant to Ottawa (Bytown), I had hoped
his name would be on the list. I was delighted to find that it was, as was James Kealey's
name. Darby indicated that he was from the town or townland of Coulo, in the Parish of
Mayo, in what was in his day called Queens County but was formerly and is now again
called County Laois (pronounced "leash" and also spelled Leix and Laoghis). Darby
indicated that he had two brothers-in-law, Thomas Connolly and James Nash living in
Coulo and that they were known to a Mr. FitzMaurice of that town (his character
reference and probably his landlord, in that Catholics were forbidden to own land).
Note that Darby had two brothers-in-law back in Ireland: Thomas Connolly and James Nash.
There are, of course, two classifications of brothers-in-law: one’s sister‘s husband
and one’s wife‘s brother. As I indicated earlier, we do not know the name of Darby’s
first wife (my great-great-great grandmother), but if either of these men were Darby’s
brother-in-law because they were his wife’s brother, then she would have been a Nash
or a Connolly. Alternatively, however, Nash and Connolly might both have been men who
married Darby’s sisters. We don’t know.
The McCabe List also indicates that Darby brought three people with him to Canada,
but does not specify who they were. In that he and his first wife had three children
before she died, I initially assumed that she must have died in Ireland and that the
three people travelling with him were his children. New evidence, however, suggests
that Darby’s second child (Thomas) was born in Bytown in 1820. Thus, it is not clear
who the three people travelling with him might have been. I suspect they were his
unnamed first wife, his eldest son John, and perhaps another child who died young.
The evidence indicating that Thomas Kealey was born in Bytown and therefore could
not have been one of the three people who accompanied his father Darby to Canada
from Ireland is a newspaper article that appeared in The Ottawa Citizen in 1920.
FIRST BOY BORN ON SITE OF OTTAWA
DIES IN PERSON OF THOMAS KEALEY
Had Reached Ripe Old Age of 100 Years- Spent Most of His Life At Venosta, up the Gatineau
The first boy born on the site of Ottawa passed away when Mr. Thomas Kealey, aged 100
years, died recently at the old homestead, Venosta, Quebec. Mr. Kealey was the son of
the late Mr. and Mrs. Darby Kealey, who were among the first settlers of old Bytown.
Early in life Mr. Kealey moved to the Gatineau, and took up residence at the place
now called Venosta, where he staked a homestead and took up farming. He was one of
the pioneers of the Gatineau Valley and rumour says he had the distinction of owning
the first work horse in the valley.
Growth of Gatineau
During his life he saw the growth of the Gatineau from a vast forest in which wild
animals roamed to its present state. He saw the building of the Canadian Pacific
branch of the railroad called the Ottawa & Maniwaki. In the early days it was known
as the Gatineau Valley Railroad. He witnessed the ineffectual attempts of the
engineers to fill in the lake now known as Rice’s Sink Hole (surname Rice) and saw
them despair of success in this and circle it.
He was well known throughout the entire Valley and his death will cause sincere
regret to all who came in contact with him.
Proud of Distinction
Acquaintances of Mr. Kealey say that when the Old Boys’ Reunion was held in Ottawa
some years ago, he had a dispute with another man whose name cannot be ascertained
about the honour of being the first male child born in Bytown’ and won out.
He was a Catholic and for many years had attended Martindale church.
Surviving him are three sons: John Kealey, of MacLaren’s Lumber Company, Buckingham;
P.J. Kealey, on the old homestead, and M. J. Kealey of Venosta; and one daughter, Mrs.
Sophia Sullivan. His wife, Mrs. Ann Darcy Kealey, predeceased him about a quarter of
Many at Funeral
The funeral, which was the largest seen in the Gatineau district for many years,
took place from the old homestead to Martindale church, where Rev. Father Carleton
chanted a Requiem Mass. Burial was made in Martindale cemetery.
There is a disturbing quality to this article, in that it denies the existence of
First Nations people. As indicated, archaeological evidence suggests the Algonquin
people lived on the banks of the Ottawa, Rideau, and Gatineau Rivers for thousands
of years. It is therefore unlikely that Thomas Kealey was the first "boy" born on
"the site of Ottawa". Perhaps he was the first "white boy".
The James Kealey cited on the McCabe List indicated that he was from Carlow Park,
the Parish of Kile, Queens County (i.e., Laois). He indicated that he had a
brother-in-law by the name of Patrick Brennan at Queen Foyle, County Kilkenny,
who is known to a Mr. FitzMaurice of Tallestar. In that James and Darby lived in
different parishes at different ends of the county and cite different brothers-in-law
as references, one suspects they were more likely to be cousins than brothers.
I assume that James is one of the three Kealeys mentioned in Lett’s Bytown.
Until the discovery of the McCabe list, we had no idea what part of Ireland Darby
came from, except that he sailed to Canada from County Cork. Further research might
indicate where in County Laois the townland of Coulo or the Parish of Mayo are.
Maps available to me at this time are not that detailed. A townland is akin to what
we Canadians call a "Rural Route". Thus, one’s address might be "R.R. 6, Kemptville,
Ontario", meaning there are various routes the rural postal workers travel that
radiate out of the town of Kemptville. In Ireland these routes have names,
not numbers, and are thought of as separate entities and not projections of the
nearest town or village.
Darby’s second wife was Elizabeth Mulligan who had been born in Ireland in 1816
and was therefore 24 years younger than her husband. They had eight children between
1835 and 1849: Mary, James, Ellen, Michael, Martin, Patrick, Joseph, and Elizabeth.
According to the 1842 census data, he occupied a 100 acre lot in Eardly Township,
which until recently was in Aylmer Quebec but is now part of the city of Gatineau.
The 1851 census shows him living with his family in Nepean Township (now Ontario, now within the City of Ottawa).
The last record we have of him is in 1861, when his son James was married and he was
still living in Nepean Township.
As indicated, Darby’s Canadian-born daughter married John Lawless of Ballon. They
had nine children who are listed at the end of Chapter Three of the present history.
In December of 1880 John and Catherine's son teenaged son Francis was killed in a
logging accident in a shanty north of Venosta. A protruding knot in a log caught in
the boy’s clothing and he was tossed and crushed by the rolling log. His body was
brought back to his parents’ home by sleigh, but his father, John, did not wish
to shock his wife and so passed the house and went to an uncle’s (James Kealey’s)
house. Catherine sensed that something was wrong, grabbed her shawl, and rushed out
into the cold after the sleigh. She died a month later. in January 1881. Catherine,
her husband John, and their son Francis are buried in the old cemetery in Martindale,
near Venosta. Their names are on the newly erected common stone (see the
illustration at the end of Chapter 3).
... Ian Shields
December 23, 2005:
I was wandering through the Bytown website and enjoying the Kealey data. I remain
hopeful of connecting my Kealey ancestors (Nicholas Kealey/Catherine Fahey) to those
of the 'Venosta and Low' Kealeys who issue from Darby. I was a bit surprised to
read no reference to a small publication by Laurel Doucette, The Kealey, Lawliss,
Gleason, Foley and Brown Families of Venosta and Low (1993). I have a print copy
of the report but no permission from the copyright holder to make reprints.
... Will Dunlop
December 26, 2005:
Hi Kealy folks -
I'm attaching two photos of a Kealy gravesite I visited in the small village of
Wolfhill, County Laois, the area from which Darby Kealy may have come. Note that
the father (John) referred to on the gravestone would have been born in 1771 -
could have been Darby's father or uncle. I spoke to the postmaster in Wolfhill
who remembered several Kealys who lived on farms in the area but have moved away.
There was a Kealy family living in Swan, just a couple of miles away, but I couldn't
make contact with them. Al Lewis indicated that Darby may have come from Clogh,
a village nearby, but I couldn't find any Kealys there. I only had a few hours
in the area - would like to go back and do some more hunting.
From George Tuck:
This is my wife's family, Ron.
You will find them in Griffith's Eval., tenants of Alice Kavanagh, in Upper Slatt.
We searched for their home or footings in 1996 based on information we picked
up in Leach's Pub in Wolfhill (quite a story). Coming out of the pub, turn right,
go about half a mile; the road continues as a dirt road leading into a reforested
area; the main road bears left. Down this dirt road going in the direction of Kyle
(the road is a dead end), we found some footings and a chimney remnant on the right
side about a mile in. This is probably not the Kealy home. A family member still
alive, informs me the Kealys lived in two cottages probably further down and to the
best of his knowledge, now covered. In the same grave yard is a new, erect marker in
the name of with the same information transcribed.
John b1806, James, William, Thomas, Malachi and a female child were John and Sarah's
offspring according to Ballyadams RC Parish records.
JK and Sarah apparently were married in a joint ceremony with a male Fleming and
female Kealy, brother and sister of JK & S respectively. I have not had time yet
to view the marriage and death records which I believe are available. John had a
11 offspring ffrom his marriage to Mary MacDonald, all named John, James,William etc.
The daughter of this 3rd John, Rosie, died in 1999. She was a great lady and
supplier of alot of my information. Of about 600 Kealys in this strand, none
that I know of have shared the name Darby in any form.
The Swan is owned by Eamonn Fleming. Behind his pub were in 1996, two John Kealys
in separate cottages. They produced clay tiles, I gather. I wasn't able to speak
to them. Eamonn, too, mentioned of hearing Kealys in the Clogh area, but like you,
we found no evidence in the church yard. According to the phone book, there were
two Kealys in Ballylynan a little further down the main highway. If you go back
you may wish to check these sources. The priest in Ballyadams was a Fr. Fleming,
who may also have knowledge of the family and records.
The strands on the Laois Kealy Message board from 2001 may have a few more offspring
mentioned. By talking to old folks in the area you may get some more leads and
hopefully colourful stories! Good luck and thanks for the photos, Ron, - much
better detail than mine!
... George Tuck
July 4, 2006:
Hi Folks - I don't know if you're familiar with this publication - but go to
www.celtic-connection.com, click on Gatineau, and find two interesting articles
related to the Kealey family, one by Martin O'Malley, and one about the
Pioneer Cemetary in Martindale.
January 31, 2007:
Gord Cruikshank sent me the URL link to this specific section yesterday.
Wow, lots of information with names I recognize and should help with my connections.
Darby Kealey is my 3rd great grandfather. My connection is thru my Grandparents
(Nicholas McGoey / Sarah Cuddihey), great Grandparents (John Cuddihey / Mary Ann Kealey),
2nd great Grandparents (Thomas Kealey / Sarah Darby) and Darby Kealey / unknown first wife.
I do have John Lawliss and Catherine Lawliss in my tree as marrying Thomas Kealey’s
brother and sister, but not much information after that.
I came across a January 9t,h 1872 wedding of Elizabeth Kealey (born about 1854
Gloucester) to Thomas Brown. The parents of Elizabeth are Jermiah Kealey / Elizabeth
Mulligan. One of the witnesses was Mary Ann Kealey of Low. I’m fairly certain that
this is my great Grandmother. But I have been unable to tie in the Elizabeth
Kealey and parents to the Darby Kealey line. I found it interesting the comment
that Darby and Jeremiah names are interchangeable. This Jermiah Kealey would be
too young to be the Darby Kealey. I believe one generation out.
I would be very interested to hear from any of you to share further information.
... Bruce Cowen
Names on the above document:
Thomas Brown, Stanislaus Robert, James Hickey, Jane Thompson, Kealey, Graham, St. George,
Bradford, Robitaille, Pelletier
and thanks to Will Dunlop for some further information:
Bruce, for the following info.
I am quoting from the source "The Kealey, Lawliss, Gleason and Brown Families
of Venosta and Low" by Laurel Doucette (July, 1993): Elizabeth Kealey (1849-1887)
daughter of Darby Kealey and second wife, Elizabeth Mulligan, married a
Tom Brown (brother of an Ellen Brown). Ellen Brown married James Kealey, brother of
The children of Elizabeth and Thomas Brown are 1. Tom Brown who married Mary Kelly,
2. Lillie Brown who married XXX Lavelle, 3. Mike Brown, and 4. Molly Brown who married
I hope this helps.
All the best,
... Will Dunlop
March 8, 2008:
Hi Al -
Just a note to let you know that I'm still plugging away (off and on)
at the family history (descendants of Darby Kealey). I now have over
1200 names in my database. If you run across anything of interest,
please keep me in mind.
October 14, 2009:
Thanks to Mr. Basil Kealey for the following e-mail. It has also been posted today to our James Kealey page.
I am the ggggrandson of Jeremiah [Darby] Kealey who too was reported to be born in Laois.
Ireland. My sister and I visited Ireland this summer and journeyed to the Wolfhill
area and found the gravestone of John Kealy in St.Mary's Cemetery .It was always
stated that this is where Darby came from and John was his father. The local relatives
in the Wolfhill-Swan-Clogh dispute this information and emphatically deny that Darby
is from this family and area.
A Dr.Kevin Kealy who lived all his life in the Wolfhill area and is a retired
Veterinarian now living in Dublin has done a great deal of research on the
John Kealy family and he also can't find Jeremiah [Darby] on the tree. My research
of Ireland births indicate that Darby was baptized in Nenagh Parish in 1794 in
Tipperary Coounty in 1794.-- Father-Daniel Kealy and mother - Honora Scanell.
This birth date also corresponds with the 1852 census and his residence in Nepean
Township Records previously reported his birth as 1792 Darby was reported as coming
to Canada with Martin and James and was reported to be in Ottawa before 1820.I found
Martin's birth records of 1801 hailing from Kilkenny Co. If your James was born in
1818 it is unlightly that he was the person that came with Darby .I would think that
the James that came with Darby was much older.In fact Darby would be 24 years older
than your James as you indicate in the birth records.Please advise if you can through
any light on this matter.
Also,the James Kealy shown on Ireland Birth Records born in 1818 was not born in
Laois Co, however like Martin born in Kilkenny Co
January 22, 2010:
Thanks to Bruce Cowen and Tom Mulligan for the following newspaper article regarding the Mulligan Family Reunion in 1938.
Mulligan Family Reunion in 1938:
Source: Ottawa Citizen Archives for August, 1938
The complete article accessible via www.bytown.net/citizensearch.htm
October 16, 2015:
Recently The National Library of Ireland has put the digitized Parish Register Online at:
I want to check it and since I had the birth of Darby Jeremiah Kealy on july 1794 in Nenagh, Ireland
I tried my chance and did find out a record for 12 july 1794 that say:
Jeremiah Kealy son of Dl(?) and Honora Scanell.
... Gaston Lamontagne