Progress report re: research of Marshall of Aghaloo

Since posting my first blog on the Marshall family a few months ago, a fair number of records for the period, 1694–1770, have been published to Arborealis. Most of this information comes from fifty-nine Memorials of Irish deeds dating from 1713–1770: this number represents about 28% of the total number of memorials pertaining to the Marshall surname for which I obtained copies covering a 156-year period, 1713 to 1869. ☛ The latter year will likely be the end date for the Memorials segment of this research project.

Quite aside from the numbers, these Memorials have yielded a great deal of genealogical information that is otherwise not available. It is not an exaggeration to say that each memorial gives up some surprise or other. To get a sense of the breadth and depth of the information collated by townland, please refer to this link for the draft Marshall family tree, reflecting input for the period, 1694–1770. Please note that this chart is very much a work-in-progress, as it is not unusual for subsequent records to dictate that amendments be made to earlier interpretations.

Beginning with the year 1764, articles from the Belfast News-Letter have been interleaved with the data from the Memorials. To date, eleven news articles have been posted, and there are many more pending publication to this website. Almost needless to say, news articles provide insights not generally recorded in land and estate records: from the News-Letter, for example, we have obtained not only death notices and advertisements, but also the scandalous tale of an eighteenth century estrangement.

The draft family tree also illustrates the points at which the Marshall family branched out to Blackwatertown in the parish of Clonfeacle, county Armagh (1757), and to Aughnacloy in the parish of Carnteel, county Tyrone (1763).

By 1769, one of the branches in Glenkeen townland had emigrated to Georgia in America—the family headed by Joseph Marshall and Mary Hagan. Of this last branch, much research has been done by Mrs. Judy Bingham of California. The political career of the surviving son of Joseph and Mary Marshall—still yet another Joseph—in Nova Scotia (then a British colony, not yet part of the Canadas) has been summarized neatly by Judith Tulloch in Francess G. Halpenny's Dictionary of Canadian Biography (Vol. VII. University of Toronto Press, 1988, pp. 588-9). More about the Nova Scotia branch will be published to Arborealis in the months to come.

Having made an unabashed call for help with this research project in my earlier blog article, several more researchers have reached out. One of these, Gwen Barry of Halifax, Nova Scotia—a family historian of considerable long standing—has very generously contributed her notes and book manuscripts for publication to Arborealis. Another family historian, who wishes to remain anonymous, descends from the very early Caledon branch of Marshalls: she also has contributed the work done for her by an excellent commercial researcher in Ireland, as well as a volume of notes from one of her American emigrant ancestors. In all, several new names have been added to the mailing list for updates to this website, all of whom are enthusiastic researchers and who represent different lines of the Marshalls of Aghaloo.

To each of you, I extend many thanks for your interest and support.

Looking ahead, I have decided to approach the remainder of this research project in five-year increments. Thus, the next phase for publication to Arborealis will be for the years, 1771–1775. Having taken a peek at what this will entail, this period includes fifteen Memorials, just three articles from the Belfast News-Letter (BNL), and a dozen or so entries from other sources. To compare, the immediately preceding five-year period, 1766–1770, featured nine Memorials and ten articles from the BNL. It will be interesting to see whether this pace will increase (as people made more use of each medium), remain steady, or fall off (representing, perhaps, increased emigration and/or consolidation of smaller holdings by the major landowners) in subsequent five-year periods through the remainder of the eighteenth century and well into the nineteenth.

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... On a completely different note, we were enjoying an extended autumn season—taking long walks through neighbouring woodlots—until just a few days ago. However, Old Man Winter has seen fit to descend upon us early. For those of us not inclined to winter sports, 'tis a time to bundle up and work on our various pastimes. Here's to good music, as well, and all good wishes.

cottage in snow2

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© Alison Kilpatrick, 2016. All rights reserved.
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"The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there."—Lesley Poles Hartley (1895–1972), The Go-Between (1953).

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