Readers often contact me wondering where a particular ancestor or surname is likely to have originated in Ireland. Sometimes I can give a direct answer – but sometimes the answer is “it depends”. The following conversation features one of those surnames that originated in many different locations in Ireland. Here we have Kathleen Brennan from…

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Have you ever been to the west of Ireland? This would be the region occupied by counties Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim, Mayo, Galway, Clare, Limerick, Kerry and Cork. These counties contain many places of outstanding natural beauty and today they draw tourists by the thousand – but just a few decades ago, people were leaving their…

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The island of Omey lies off the coast of Connemara – an area to the west of Ireland that covers parts of Counties Mayo and Galway in the province of Connaught. This was the region that Cromwell referred to in the 1600s when he “invited” leading Gaelic families to leave more fertile areas of the…

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Céad Míle Fáilte – and welcome to your Letter from Ireland for this week. We’ve just passed the 1st of May – and the weather is finally turning milder around here – and bringing the rain. But, what of it, Ireland has a “Green” reputation for a reason! I’m having a cup of tea made…

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Readers often contact me wondering where a particular ancestor or surname is likely to have originated in Ireland. Sometimes I can give a direct answer – but sometimes the answer is “it depends”. The following conversation features one of those surnames that originated in many different locations in Ireland. Here we have Kathleen Brennan from…

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