John Fanning 1864

John Fanning 1864

Place of migration:
Stayed in Ireland

John Fanning (My Gt Grandfather. grew up on a farm which his family leased. It was at Dunbrough House (sometimes spelt Dunbro). It was in St Margarets parish and is now extremely close to Dublin airport. The Fanning family sold the lease (document uploaded) and the farm was clearly a relatively diverse and modern (for the time) farm. Dunbro House was quite grand. The family moved to 14 Fitzgibbon Street (which was re-numbered later and is now 34 Fitzgibbon Street. 

The 16th of June Blooms Day in Dublin and so - James Joyce - Anybody with ancestry in Dublin would be pleased to find a connection to the literary giant that is James Joyce. We have one. Celebrate!

Our family (part of it) the uncles and Aunts of Mums father (John Fanning) live in 14 Fitzgibbon Street immediately after the Joyce family moved out. Some biographers link James Joyce’s time at Fitzgibbon Street to his awakening to Dublin, his exploration of it. Something which informed his books long after he moved away and lived in France. James Joyce was born in 1882 and was 10 years old when the family moved into (their last good address). They left in 1896 when Joyce was 14 years old. The Fannings moved in. It was those years he was able to start walking the streets and understanding more of the life of the town. The route of the Joyce Run passes the junction of Mountjoy Square East with Fitzgibbon Street, where Joyce lived in 14 Fitzgibbon Street, now number 34, and past the site of the postbox that Fr.Conmee gets Master Brunny Lynamto post the letter into in Ulysses (p.181). The postbox is no longer there. The postbox is listed as a Pillar Letter-Box in Thom’s1(p.1470), and it can be seen as a dot on the ordnance survey map of the time. Vivien Igoe in James Joyce’s Dublin Houses & Nora Barnacle’s Galway(p.50,51) writes of the meeting between Fr. Conmee and John Joyce on the corner of the square, leading to Joyce studying in Belvedere College without having to pay fees. This fortuitous meeting, and  negotiation, led James Joyce to have a good education. The meeting is fictionalised in A Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man:

"I walked bang into him, said Mr Dedalus for the fourth time, just at the corner of the square.Then I suppose, said Mrs Dedalus, he willbe able to arrange it. I mean about Belvedere.Of course he will, said Mr Dedalus. Don’t I tell you he’s provincial of the order now?I never liked the idea of sending him to the christian brothers myself, said Mrs Dedalus.Christian brothers be damned! said Mr Dedalus. Is it with Paddy Stink and Mickey Mud? No,let him stick to the jesuits in God’s name since he began with them. They’ll be of service tohim in after years. Those are the fellows that can get you a position.And they’re a very rich order, aren’t they, Simon? Rather. They live well, I tell you. You saw their table at Clongowes. Fed up, by God, like game cocks."

ALso interesting - Directly before living in Fitzgibbon Street, the Joyce family had lived in Hardwick Street. Oddly, Hardwick Street was where my Gt Grandfather John Fanning lived in 1914, before disappearing from our records (and abandoning his children who ended up in Artane and Merrion). Johns Wife died of TB in 1914.

There was over 20 years between James Joyce at 29 Hardwick St and John Fanning at 12 Hardwick St. The streets character had changed by then, the once grand buildings sub-divided and some had become ‘tenements’ as with many previously ‘good’ streets, with sound buildings. Johns siblings stayed on in Fitzgibbon Street and in some cases seem to have been succesful. I dont know the reason why John, his wife and children drifted so far away from that life - ultimately my grandfather emigrated to England and didnt go back to Dublin. It feels that the family connection was cut at around this 1914 time. Undoubtedly very sad for us now as we lost touch with our Dublin cousins - still I was delighted to find that (before the split) they lived in the same house as teh Joyce Family had done and immediately after they moved out.  

Its a Historic House now - details are linked below with the Inventory of Architectural Heritage

Additional Information
Date of Birth 5th Aug 1864  
Associated Building (s) 14 Fitzgibbon Street (James Joyce was a resident)  
Place & Date of Baptism Finglas, County Dublin, Ireland  

Supporting Documents


Inventory of Architectural Heritage Ireland VIEW SOURCE

Communities Associated with this Ancestor

Buildings Associated with this Ancestor