Friday, April 12, 2019

K is for Keough

My Father's Ethnicity Estimate from

I remember it like it was yesterday. It was back in 2009. I had been doing a bit of genealogy as time allowed. I was just getting started and doing some online research on my Keough family which I knew had roots in Newfoundland. I didn't know anything about Newfoundland but I stumbled upon Newfoundland's Grand Banks website and read through all of the historical material and Bonavista South material. I had a copy of my grandfather's WWI draft registration from and knew that he stated he was born in Plate Cove East.  I happened to see an advertisement for a research trip to Newfoundland put together by the New England Historic Genealogical Society. I don't know what possessed me but I decided (rather spur of the moment) to sign up for the trip. We were asked to put together a bit about what topics or families we wanted to research and that helped me focus on my basic research questions. I set about checking flights, accommodations, travel tips, and potential contacts in Newfoundland. A month later, I headed to St. John's and began a journey that would take me literally and figuratively on my own version of "Who Do You Think You Are?" (Keep in mind that show did not air in the United States until a year later in 2010 - a bit ahead of my genealogy time - who knew?!) 

Although we had a few snafus during the research trip I enjoyed the lectures, the guided visits to the Provincial Archives of Newfoundland and Labrador (PANL), the Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN), and the Maritime History Archives at MUN, as well as the walking tour of St. John's and the conversations, meals and drinks with fellow researchers. Thankfully, I had planned my time so that I could remain in St. John's after the research trip ended and I continued my research at various facilities in St. John's and then rented a car to make the drive to the Bonavista region to visit the places I had only heard of - Bonavista, King's Cove, Knight's Cove, Open Hall, Tickle Cove, Keels, and Plate Cove (my grandfather was raised in Plate Cove East so I was going home in a sense). The most amazing thing  I found during the trip was the wealth of Keoughs (and variant spellings of Keogh, Kehoe & Kough). It is not a common surname in the United States (or most places). I had seen it in parts of Ireland, but in Newfoundland - and certainly in Plate Cove - Keough was common! In fact there were so many Keoughs that I wasn't sure if or how my Keoughs were related to any of the  many Keoughs.

And so I backed into what I didn't even know was a one-name study (I registered the Keough surname with the Guild of One-Name Studies in 2012). Since I had a limited time in Newfoundland, I could not spend hours or days trying to find my Keoughs - I had to gather all the Keoughs (and all the other people) from those small communities because I didn't know who married in (women who married into the Keough families) and who married out (Keough women who married into affiliated families). There were church registers that could be viewed and transcribed but could not be photographed, scanned, or photocopied - so I became a scrivener - arriving when PANL opened its doors and remaining until PANL closed its doors. I ventured to the Archives at the Basilica of St. John's to speak with the Archivist and view records from their vault (and get lots of questions answered). I contacted the Bonavista Archives and made arrangements for the Archivist to open the facility so I could photograph index cards that no one had checked out for years. I walked the cemeteries at King's Cove, Open Hall, and Plate Cove East with my camera in hand - and felt like I was walking among family. I had earlier checked out the Stonepics Project and had indexed all the Keough entries in those community cemeteries. Now it was time to walk the cemeteries and see where my people and those they spent their lives with (the FAN club - friends, acquaintances, and neighbors) were buried. I visited the churches where my people married, where their children were baptized, where they went to Sunday mass, and where, at some point, they were buried from.

The Bonavista Region
map courtesy of (satellite view) 

I met extended family in St. John's, Plate Cove East, and Plate Cove West. I spent all my time taking it all in and gathering every single piece of family information I could (I also backed into my one-place study of Plate Cove East as a result of my visit). I have spent the last ten years (on and off, as time allows) putting together the puzzle that is my Keough connection in Newfoundland. It is a good thing I enjoy puzzles and research because there is a wealth of information, both from my trip and from everything now digitized and available online, as well as at facilities in the United States. There is so much out there to help me with my personal family history, my Keough one-name study, and my Plate Cove East one-place study. 

So who are my Keoughs and how did I learn more about them? Thankfully Doctor John J. Mannion (Department of Geography, retired; Department of Folklore, current; one of Canada's leading cultural geographers and an expert on Newfoundland's settlement history, has written papers, articles, books, and taught generations of MUN students the importance of their cultural roots transplanted from Ireland to Newfoundland). Much of his work is in tracing early settlers to Newfoundland. For example his books Irish Settlement in Eastern Canada and The Peopling of Newfoundland, as well as the Mannion Papers - over 5,000 undergraduate and graduate student papers detailing community and family histories (available at the Maritime History Archive).

Andrew Keough/Kough is my Newfoundland connection. He was born in County Carlow, Ireland in 1784. In response to a request for information about Andrew Keough/Kough, Professor Mannion wrote
I think Andrew (1784) resided first in King's Cove, he was fishing there in 1815 with Henry Handcock, a shareman. In 1819, Andrew was supplied by the merchant company of James MacBraire & Company and was in debt for 94 pounds, a huge sum. Kough's property at King's Cove was seized. But he was still there in 1823 when MacBraire sued him for 42 pounds. Andrew denied the claim and travelled 3 times to St. John's to defend against it. MacBraire lost and had to pay Andrew's expenses. 7 pounds 10 pence. I think Andrew moved to Plate Cove around this time. James Heany of Plate Cove was godfather to James ( 1824), son of Andrew. I cannot account for John, Thomas or William in Lovell [Lovell's 1871 Directory of Newfoundland]. 
(with thanks to Vince Hunter and and Jeri Keough who did and continue to do Keough family research and share much of their information at Newfoundland's Grand Banks website. Just a reminder that we gratefully stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us with family history research.)

Additionally, Seary's Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland references my Andrew as follows: "Andrew Keough or Kehoe, of King's Cove, 1816, of Plate Cove, 1824, of Open Hole (now Open Hall), 1829 (Nfld. Archives KCRC) [Kings Cove Roman Catholic].

Here are some snapshots from my work-in-progress on Andrew Keough  and his descendants:

Andrew Keough & Catherine Aylward Family
10 children
[click on any images to enlarge]

James Keough - Margaret Dooley Family
14 children

Patrick Keough - Mary Driscoll Family
11 children

My Keoughs were/are Irish Catholic and much of my time in Newfoundland was spent with baptism, marriage, and burial registers for the Catholic churches in King's Cove, Open Hall, and Plate Cove. I have 443 individuals with the Keough surname in my Newfoundland Families database. The Keough family has affiliated (married in and married out) with the Aylward, Barker, Carew, Donahue, Driscoll, Dooley, Fitzgerald, Furlong, Gallahue, Heaney, Joy,  Lane, Lawton, Mahoney, Maloney, Melvin, Moss, Murphy, Philpot/Philpottt, Russell, Tracey, and Walsh families. Do you recognize any of these 3 generations of Keough families of Plate Cove East? Do any of your Keough lines intersect with mine? Do you have Keoughs in surrounding communities that we might be able to put together? Do you have Keough lines in other parts of Newfoundland that might connect up to County Carlow, Ireland? If you do, I would love to hear from you and put the various Keough pieces of the puzzle together!

As you can see from the first image (above), my father's DNA test results confirm my research - according to Ancestry, he has 100% Irish ethnicity and the connection is Southeast Ireland to Newfoundland on his paternal side. If it looks like we might have a Keough connection through the Keough line or any of the affiliated surnames, please comment below and let's start sharing!

Thursday, April 11, 2019

J is for Joy

I have 27 individuals with the surname Joy in my Newfoundland Families database. According to Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Joy is a surname of England and Ireland, it is from the common noun joy, or from the male and female baptismal names of Joie and Joia, or also in Ireland as a variant of Joyce. It is traced to Essex and Devon and found in Counties Kerry and Waterford. It is found in the 1750s in St. Johns, and in various regions of Newfoundland from then on. [Seary, E. R., et al. 1998. Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland. St. John's, Nfld: J.R. Smallwood Centre for Newfoundland Studies, Memorial University of Newfoundland.]  My particular interest is in those found in Bonavista, King's Cove, and Open Hole (now Open Hall). If you have Joys in your family history do check out pages 278-279 of Family Names for early occurrences - are any of these individuals yours?

Our Joy connection comes from Thomas Joy married to Diana Keough. They had three children, Patrick, Mary, and Catherine. Do you have more information on this family or know who Thomas' parents are? Are there any Joys in your Newfoundland Family tree?

The Joys in my Newfoundland Families' database
[click to enlarge any images]

Patrick Keough - Susanna Ryan Family
Diana Keough

Thomas Joy - Diana Keough Family

Patrick Joy Birth and Baptism

Information comes from Birth & Baptism Registers, located at PANL

Come back tomorrow, when we focus on the Keoughs of Plate Cove!