Friday, 25 September 2009

Ballyportery roundup

I come to the last six children of James and Jane (nee Maitland) McIlhagga of Ballyportery. Nancy was born about 1870 and married Joe Clark. They had three children, Robert, Annetta and Maggie who married and had seven children. Next came Margaret (known as Maggie) born 16th October 1870 at Knockahollet and on 17th August 1904 married John Taylor Elliott at Ballyweaney Presbyterian Church. Mary Jane was born about 1874 and emigrated to the USA where she married Charles E. Thistleton on 15th September 1910 in Detroit, Wayne, Michigan. Interestingly Detroit is where Mary Jane's uncle James lived ten years earlier. Was he still there? Lizzie was born about 1876. She stayed in Ireland and married Blacksmith Joseph Adams on 5th November 1897, also at Ballyweaney Presbyterian Church. Her marriage witnesses were her sister Margaret and James Darragh. It is from the Darragh family in Australia that we have had some of our information about Irish McIlhaggas. Lizzie died on 2nd October 1958 aged 82.

Martha was the fifth and last daughter, born 3rd July 1877 at Knockahollet. She married John Thompson, a farmer, at Bushvale Presbyterian Church, Ballymoney, Kilraghts, Corkey. They moved from Ireland to Scotland but unlike their cousins they didn't move to within reach of Edinburgh, but rather to Bellshill near Glasgow. However, like their male cousins, in Scotland John became a shale miner. They had seven children, four boys and three girls. With two of the boys they kept the clan name alive in the names James McIlhagga Thompson and John McIlhagga Thompson. John and Martha have 28 grandchildren and at least 18 great-grandchildren in Scotland. Martha died in Carluke, Lanarkshire on 15th September 1958 aged 81. James and Jane McIlhagga's last child was a son who was I think named William John. I believe he married and had four children though I cannot confirm this. Any information about him would be gratefully received.

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