Thursday, March 10, 2016

Walsh's of Formweel

The view from my Grandmother's house looks across Lough Muckanagh towards a distant fishing lodge, called Fermoyle Lodge.  The back road (Shanapheasteen) from Oughterard to Carraroe passes by the lodge,  Local lore says it was a fishing lodge for wealthy British folks back in the day.

I haven't given much thought to this place, other than it's a nice view over to the Lodge.  But as my research has progressed, I've found one of my Great Grand Aunts marrying a Walsh from Formweel (one of the variant spellings).  This made me think that there could be some other connections between the Walsh families that are separated by Lough Muckanagh.  It is a remote area and the villages/townlands are very small, with only a handful of households in each.  And every household is a Walsh family!

I stumbled across a record last night that sent me down the rabbit hole.....and to another interesting possibility.  I found a World War One British Military Pension record for a Patrick Walsh of Rosmuck Parish.  I looked at the details, as I knew that generally you might find a birthdate and/or a listing of spouse, children, or parents names.   I thought this might help me identify where and who this Patrick was.  Sure enough, there was a listing of his parents, John and Mary, and his siblings: brothers (younger it said!): Matthew, Michael, Thomas, and sister Margaret.

So, with a little sleuthing, I found a family with a Mathias Walsh, and the other siblings/parents in the 1901 Census in Formweel.  Then found the baptisms of the children, which identified the parents as John Walsh and Mary Flaherty!  Looks like Patrick lied a bit about his age, as he was baptized in 1858, and his attestation has him as age 23 in 1892 (which would make him born about 1869).  He served with the Army, serving in India from 1906-1913, and was discharged in 1917 at Plymouth, as physically unfit (rheumitism).

Now, who is this John Walsh and family, and do they relate to my people.  In Griffiths Valuation for Formweel there are 3 Walsh's listed:  Thomas Walsh, John Walsh (!!), and Peter Walsh (who I know relates as the father of my Gt Grand Aunt's husband Comryn Walsh).   An earlier record, the Tithe Applotments, shows Peter Walsh for Formweel, and Muckanaghkillew.

So....more sleuthing to come to figure out if this family connects to mine!

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