Saturday, 29 July 2017

Laheen - Ballagh - Grallagh

Thomas Laheen, a farmer from Grallagh near Killascobe, Co Galway died in . We don't know anything him or his wife apart from the fact that he was father of at least 6 children who still have descendants in the area. Michael Grady tells me that the Laheens came from Clonkeen Kerrill originally and that there were five sisters. Thomas died in 1879 aged 80 years. Thomas and his wife now have great great great great great grandchildren in the locality and beyond, some of whom are now 6th cousins.

We know Thomas had three daughters so perhaps there were others.

Thomas's son [1] Martin Laheen of Grallagh married Bridget Clarke and had eight children, these were:

(1) Patrick Laheen m. (1910) Mary Burke (Vermount)
(2) James Laheen unmarried
(3) Martin Laheen m. (1912) Barbara Burke (nee Dolly) as her second husband
(4) Mary Laheen m. (1886) William Lally (Raheens / Rahins)
(5) Catherine Laheen m. (1895) Patrick Costello of Killascobe
(6) Helen Laheen m. (c. 1898) Pat Flannary/Flannery (Hampstead)

(7) Bridget Laheen m. 1st 1890 Patrick Kenny m. 2nd 1895 James Dooley
{ James Kenny b. 1891 m. Julia Dolan
Mary Dooley
Norah Dooley m. Paddy Kenny}

(8) Margaret Laheen m. John J. Smith in U.S.A.
{John J Smith born abt. 1868, Ireland. died 18/08/1917 in San Francisco
Margaret Laheen born 08/12/1875, died 18/10/1969 in Santa Clara, California
 Their children as follows:

Thomas F Smith, born 23/12/1898, died 25/07/1959. He married an Agnes Kelly, born 1900 California, died 27/12/1934, San Francisco. They had at least 2 children. 

Rev John J Smith, born 17/04/1906, died 16/05/1964 in Clark, Nevada.

Margaret Smith, born abt 1908, died 1912.

Eugene Smith, born 14/10/1909, died 15/12/1960. He married a Regina Broyer born abt 1910. They had at least one son.}


Gravestone of Bridget (d. 1910) and Martin Laheen (d. 1911) at Menlough

Thomas's son [2] Patrick Laheen (1828-1919) married Mary Mellody (Melody), he had returned home from U.S.A. and bought a farm in Ballagh, four of their children were:

(1) Margaret Laheen born 1872

(2) Mary Laheen (b. 1865) m. (1915) Patrick Fahy of Cooloorty, Coolarty and had no children

(3) Bridget Laheen (b. 1861) m. (1896) Patrick Dooley, of Gurteen / Cappalusk, brother of James Dooley above who married Bridget's first cousin, also named Bridget
{Their children:
James Dooley (1897-1948)
Mary Dooley (1898-1913)
 John Dooley (1901-1938).
The Dooley farm was inherited by the Dooley's first cousin, Bridget Laheen who married Jimmy Cunningham ].

(4) Patrick Laheen (b. 1862) m. (1917) Bridget Ruane of Fairhill, Menlough and their children were
Bridget Laheen married Jimmy Cunningham
Patrick Laheen died unmarried 2002
Mary Kate Laheen who married Martin O'Grady
Frank Laheen (d. 2010) m. Maggie Ward
Nora (Baby) Laheen}

Thomas's Daughter [3] Honor Laheen married Michael Lawless of Ballagh
by 1911 they had two living children.

(1) Ellen Lawless married John Fahy of Sun Hill and they lived in Ballagh
Their children{
Mary Fahy married James Flynn in 1926
Jack Fahy of Ballagh married Maureen Rohan
Mattie Fahy of Garbally married Julia Grady
Michael Fahy (1908-78)
Nora Fahy (1906-37)
Margaret Fahy
Bridget Fahy
Ellen Fahy}

(2) Mary Lawless married Mike Byrne of Ballagh.
They had 9 children{
Delia Byrne m. (1932) Patrick Donoghue
Lawrence Byrne m. Mary Devilly, Mary died on 2 August 2017 aged 100 (R.I.P.)
Mary Ellen (Baby) m. Patrick Carrick
Martin Byrne m. Sabina Hansberry
Teresa (TC) m. Michael Keary
Nora Byrne m. Patrick Hoare
Kate Byrne m. Thomas Burke

Patrick Byrne was born in 1907 and went to USA. He married in November 1945 Mary Jane Chapman. In July 1952, Patrick F. Byrne 45, of Richmond Heights, Missouri was killed in a car accident. Released after hospital treatment were his wife Mary Jane and their three young children, and Mary's father. 

Michael Byrne born in 1904 also went to USA, he suffered a bad chest infection before leaving Ireland and he never married.}

Gravestone of Honor (d. 1911) and Michael Lawless (d. 1937) at Killascobe

Thomas's daughter  [4] Bridget Laheen married Bartholomew (Bartly Bartley) Kenny of Alloon, Ballymacward. Their children were:

(1) John Kenny who was unmarried
(2) Bridget Kenny married Michael Madden
(3) Patrick Kenny married Bridget Kelly
(4) Mary Kenny married Peter Commins

(5) Nora Kenny married in 1910 Thomas Foley

and their children were Mary Foley, Lillie Foley, Gertrude (Gertie) Foley and Kathleen Foley.
Nora died in 1917 in the Rotunda Hospital, Dublin after child birth.

Gertie (b. 1917) the youngest daughter was reared by her aunt Bridget Madden at Alloon, Ballymacward. Gertie later was to work in the Regional Hospital, Galway. Gertie married on 1st August 1946 to Thomas Carroll, a Shoe Repairer from Bohermore in Galway. Thomas was son of Michael Carroll a farmer. Gertie and Thomas had a son who is Thomas Carroll. Gertie died in 1986 and had for some years before that lived in Woodquay in Galway

Kathleen or Catherine Foley married Thomas Hegarty (New Forest, Hampshire, England) in 1945 in Hendon and their children are Brian Hegarty and Thomas Hegarty.

Lily J. Foley (born 5th June 1915) married in 1940 Peter O'Loughlin in Birmingham. Their children are Gerard O'Loughlin, Michael O'Loughlin, Peter O'Loughlin and Angela O'Loughlin Byrne.

Information now on MyHeritage indicates that Lily died in 1984 and Peter (Snr) died 1999 in Australia. They are buried in Gungahlin Cenetery, Mitchell.

Thomas Foley married second in 1921 Margaret Smith of Kells and their children were Patrick Joseph (PJ) Foley and Christopher Foley.

P.J. (Paddy) Foley married in 1953 Evelyn O'Reilly, they lived in Ethelstown or Etholstown near Kells, Co Meath. They moved to Canada, their son is Ray Foley and their daughter Ann Foley Palen.

Christy Foley or Christopher Foley born in 1925 went to Toronto in 1948. He married first Anne teresa Clifford and second Marie Terese Bonenfant and his daughter was Margaret  Foley. Christy died in 2006.

Thomas Foley died in 1933 Mrs Foley in 1949.

Thomas Laheen's daughter [5] Mary Laheen married Patrick Finnerty their children:

(1) Thomas Finnerty m. (1897) Kate Dolan, Cloncurreen
Patrick Finnerty m. Mary Connolly
Bridget Finnerty m. Pat Killarney
Mary Finnerty m. Thomas Fahy
Annie Finnerty b. 1906 (Sr Enda?)
Margaret Finnerty priest's housekeeper, d. 1999}

(2) Martin Finnerty m. (1905) Kate Noone, Killaclogher
Thomas Finnerty m. Mary kelly
Lena Finnerty m. Thomas Costello
Mai Finnerty m. Sam Kelly
Sr Enda Finnerty Birmingham
Nora Finnerty unmarried
Jimmy Finnerty m. Nancy McCormack, Dunshaughlin
Annie Finnerty m. James (G.) Grady
Patrick J. Finnerty m. Kate Dolly
Laurence Finnerty m. Henrietta Lynch}

(3) Patrick Finnerty m. (c. 1911) Mae Donoghue, they ran a shop in Moylough
{Martin Finnerty m. Emma Ratto, California
Mary Christine (Chrissie) Finnerty m. Sean (Jack Molloy) they went to England
Tommy Finnerty married in England
Nora Angela Finnerty married Charles Gifford Giffard, she and her sons went New Zealand after Charles died.
Patrick Finnerty m Phylis Melody married Melody, Colemanstown}

(4) James Finnerty of Castleblakeney/later Dublin married 1st (1908) Frances Gately
Mary (Mai) Finnerty m. Charles Dunne
Jimmy Finnerty
Bridie Finnerty, both died unmarried in Surrey}

James Finnerty married 2nd in 1919 Nonie Curley
Ita Finnerty m. James Clarke
Eileen Finnerty m. Enda O'Lenahan
Patrick Finnerty died in 1967 unmarried
Angela Finnerty m, Alex Somers}

(5) Michael Finnerty m. Mary Sweeney in U.S.A. :
Joseph Finnerty m. Exa Albritton
Catherine Finnerty m. Vincent Galligan
Marie Finnerty m. Dave Eldridge
Josephine Finnerty}

(6) Honor Finnerty nothing else known / Lena Finnerty sister was alive in 1945

(7) Anne Finnerty m. Patrick Ruane, Garbally
Thomas Ruane m. Kathleen Costello
Laurence Ruane m. Celia Ryan
Martin Ruane m. Maggie Ward
Julia Ruane m. John Ward
Margaret Ruance m. Richard Brady

Fr Patrick Ruane

James Ruane
Michael Ruane}

(8) Bridget Finnerty m. Thomas Connors, Cormacoo or Cormacaugh, Colemanstown/Tiaquin
Nora Connors m. Patrick McGuinness
Michael Connors m. Margaret Earls
Mary Connors m. 1918 Martin Concannon
Margaret Connors m. 1922 John Monaghan
Patrick Connors m. 1934 Mary Anne Hynes
Thomas Connors m. Lelia Moran
Martin Joseph Connors (U.S.A.) m. Noreen O'Farrell
John Connors U.S.A. d. Ballinasloe 1992
Delia and Ann twins b. 1911
Anne Veronica Connors m. Dennis K. Burke (Burke Oil, Massachusettes)
there is a 11th child}

(9) Mary Finnerty m. 1890 John Reilly
Mary Reilly 1894-1974 m. 1913 Patrick Bellew
Margaret (Maggie) Reilly m. Andrew Noone
Bridget (Bridgie) Reilly m. Martin Melody
James Reilly m. Bridget Grady
Patrick Reilly m. Mary Geraghty
Kate Reilly m. Pake Ruane
John Reilly b. 1909
Anne Reilly b. 1905}

Thomas Laheen's son [6] James Laheen married in 1873 Catherine Ruane, they had two children, Martin Laheen b. 1873 and Bridget Laheen b. 1875.

(1) Martin Laheen who was born in 1873, appears to have his name changed to Martin Leahy he in 1899 married Delia Cahill (whose family came from Salthill) in U.S.A.
{Martin P. Leahy m. 1931 Alma Watters;
John J. Leahy (d. 1996) m. Thelma Crum;
James T. Leahy (d. 1999) m. Ida Frances Vaughan, they had no children}

James appears to have died in 1876 and Catherine married second to Timothy Carty and they had 6 children.

(2) Bridget Laheen who was born in 1875 married first in 1895 Patrick Scanlon, son of Patrick of Ballagh
{two children:
Mary Scanlon b. March 1896 - d.1985 married Michael J. McCleane (1893-1960)
[They appear to have lived in Atlantic City, New Jersey and their children were Michael McCleane, James McCleane, Theresa McCleane and Thomas McCleane. Michael McCleane married Dorothy Irene and one of their sons was Fr Michael McCleane d. 2006
James Scanlon b. 1897}

Bridget Laheen married second in 1899 Thomas Scanlon, son of Thomas of Ballagh
{ten children:
Martin Scanlon (1900-81) m. Nell Monaghan (d. 2010 age 97), they had no children

Delia Scanlon m. 1931 John Laffey

Agnes Scanlon m. 1936 Thomas Mannion

Thomas Scanlon m. 1940  Delia Nolan, she died 2012 aged 98, I'd like to thank Elsie for her help.

Ann Scanlon b. 1913 died young

Nora Norah Scanlon b. 1909 d. 1998 married Martin King from Roundstone, the 1940 census has Nora and Martin King in Philadelphia and had two children

Julia Scanlon b. 1908 she arrived in 1927 from France, she became a nun and her religious name appears to have been Sister Mary  Dositheus

Margaret Scanlon b. 1906, she emigrated in 1926 to New York travelling to Catherine in Phildelphia. She married James Ireland in 1928 and they lived in Philadelphia and had James (b. 1930), Thomas (b. 1934) Margaret (b. 1935) and Patrick (b. 1939).

Catherine Scanlon b. 1903 she married in 1928 William Whalen, Murtha Anthony Whalen was born in 1931. William was born in 1929

Patrick Scanlon b. 1901}

Laheen DNA Project

Eight descendants from Thomas Laheen have taken autosomal DNA test. The results follow where the shared segments result in the number of generations to the MRCA, most recent common ancestor.
The table below gives the known actual relationships along with the DNA predictions.

MRCA for

parent and child   1
siblings                1
first cousins         2
second cousins    3
third cousins       4
fourth cousins     5

Thomas Laheen's son was James Laheen who married Catherine Ruane

Two of their great grandsons, Martin P. and David (second cousins to each other) took the test giving MRCA of 3.3 matching the actual MRCA of 3. Carol is daughter to Martin and Danny is a nephew. Derek is son of David.

The interesting additional point from this line, is that Catherine Ruane married secondly Timothy Carty from whom TJ descends and is a half second cousin to both Martin P. and David and their DNA MRCA numbers are 3.6 and 3.7 which would match the actual MRCA of 4. TJ doesn't show a recent relationship with Mary Olivia or Seamus which is what we expect.

Thomas Laheen's daughter, Mary Laheen married Patrick Finnerty. Both Mary and Seamus, third cousins descend from them with MRCA of 4, end up with MRCA of 5 from the DNA.

Thomas Laheen's daughter, Honor Laheen married Michael Lawless and Olivia descends from them.

Olivia's results provide a strong correlation for the relationship with the Leahy's,
with Danny, 4th cousin-MRCA of 5, DNA MRCA of 4.9
with Martin P, 3rd cousin once removed-MRCA of 4.5, DNA MRCA of 4.4

Olivia's results also provide strong correlation for the relationship with Mary and Seamus
with Mary, 4th cousin-MRCA of 5, DNA MRCA of 4.6
with Seamus, 4th cousin-MRCA of 5, DNA MRCA of 4.5

Olivia's results provide strong correlation with the Fnnerty Line (Mary & Seamus) and with the James Laheen Line (the Leahys)  Her results are not strong for correlation with the Laffeys from James Laheen's line.

This is compensated by a strong correlation from the Finnerty Line (Mary & Seamus) with the Laffeys from James'Laheen's line.

All third cousins, descended from five of the Laheen brothers & sisters!

Here is a new DNA Matrix taking into account one or two new additions.

Some other Reilly descendants not mentioned above are descended from the Laheens, see:

Some other Fahy descendants not mentioned above are descended from the Laheens, see:


  1. This is amazing work you've done..I'm related to Mary lawless and Michael Byrne ,Mary lawless is my great great grandmother were related not sure exactly what X cousin though

    1. Tomas, thanks for touching base, I have met your grandparents and I would be a fourth cousin of your Dad and you would be a 5th cousin of my nephews!

      You are welcome to touch base at

  2. This is very interesting and am starting to input the information into my family tree. You've done some incredible work. My grandparents were Noreen O'Farrell and Martin Connors. Thank you!
    My e-mail address is:

  3. Hello Lisa, many thanks again for touching base, we've added some new information and a new DNA matrix taking yours into account. Thanks again for signing to the Gedmatch Genesis and will keep in touch, Seamus.