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Michael Redden 1856 – 1934

Michael Redden was born on the 6th of April 1856 in Clonkelagh, Muingbaun, Kilquain, Galway, Ireland. His parents were Thomas Redden of County Clare, Ireland and Mary Maher of Clonkelagh, Muingbaun, Kilquain, Galway, Ireland. (Baptismal Registration Attached). For years I have been looking for this record and probably overlooked it many times. I have previously discussed the reason for my error due to an erroneous document provided to Terry Fanning from the East Galway Historical Society. That document, the marriage of a Thomas Reddin to a Mary Huband is attached along with the Marriage Registration of his actual parents Thomas Redden and Mary Maher.

Michael married Bridget Pender of Ballynakill, Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland on the of 04th December 1875 at St. Brendan’s R.C. Church, Eyrecourt, Eyrecourt, Galway, Ireland (Civil Registration Attached). Bridget was the daughter of Thomas Pender 1813 - 1883 and Mary Houlihan B. about 1815 to about 1877 also of Ballynakill, Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland.

At this point you might be asking yourself the question of how do we know who were Bridget’s parents? First if you look at the Civil Marriage Registration you will clearly see that Thomas Pender is listed on this document as the father and to further verify Thomas existence I am enclosing a copy of Ireland, Griffith’s Valuation, 1847-1864 (Copy Attached). For many years I was searching for Bridget’s mother and about one year ago I found this document,  The Ireland, Census Search Forms 1841, 1851 (Copy Attached) . This is merely an abstract of the 1841 and/or 1851 Irish Census; the original documents were lost to history in the Dublin Custom House fire of 1922 during the Irish Civil War. Here are the details from the National Archives of Ireland:


Year of Census Extract 1851

Surname of Applicant Pender

Christian name of Applicant Bridget

Applicant's present address Mrs. Bridget Redden, Ballinakill, Eyrecourt, Co Galway

Surname of Father Pender

Christian name of Father Thomas

Maiden Surname of Mother Houlihan

Christian name of Mother Mary

Residence Location – County Galway

Residence Location – Barony Longford

Residence Location – Parish Clonfert

Residence Location – Townland Ballynakill

Residence Location - City-


From what I have surmised this document was created on the 20th of June 1921 and was verified on the 20th of June 1923 with the submission of a baptismal note and possibly a marriage verified by some other church document. Mary Houlihan is clearly listed as Bridget’s mother and it also indicates the year that Thomas Pender married Mary Houlihan in 1837. (Note: I have not seen any church records for the parish of Eyrecourt, Meelick and Clonfert (Donanaghta), Kieran Pardy said they were all lost in the civil war).

This document is also important in Bridget and Michael Redden obtaining ownership of the buildings and lands that they and Thomas Pender leased under the Land act of 1923.     The Land Act 1923 adopted many proposals for a final land settlement from decisions reached during the Irish Convention in 1918 under the chairmanship of Horace Plunkett. The Convention's proposals formed the basis of the Act. The Land Commission had bought up 13 million acres (53,000 km2) of farmland between 1885 and 1920 where the freehold was assigned under mortgage to tenant farmers and farm workers. The focus had been on the compulsory purchase of untenanted estates so that they could be divided into smaller units for local families, some of which proved to be "uneconomic"; this policy was applied unevenly across the country, with some large estates surviving if the owners could show that their land was being actively farmed. Provision was made for compulsory purchase of land owned by a non-Irish person until repealed in 1966.

My dates for birth and death of Mary Houlihan Pender are best guesses at this time, since I have been unable to find any other documents about her life. The dates for Thomas Pender are correct from his death registration of the 5th of December 1883 in Ballinasloe, Galway, Ireland. His death is indexed on the GRO Civil Registration website, but the image of the document is not available online. I believe Annemarie and Terry Fanning have seen this document and may have sent this to me but I may have lost this document.  Annemarie did advise me that Thomas Pender died in the Ballinasloe Workhouse. There must be a story here related to Thomas’s death. It may be possible that Thomas remarried after the death of Mary Houlihan Redden and lived elsewhere, or he was estranged from his daughter leaving the land he leased to Michael and Bridget. Why he died as a pauper is a conundrum to me, knowing that his daughter and son in law were living 7 miles away in Ballynakill. If anyone has knowledge of this event I believe we all would have an interest.

Michael and Bridget Redden had seven children; six of those surviving children are mentioned in the 1901 Census of Ireland (Copy Attached) In the 1911 Census (Copy Attached) only two children are mentioned and in a special section of the census, Particulars of the Marriage the number of children born was 7 but those living were now 5 (Copy Attached). Theier remaining 3 children are not included in the 1911 census all had immigrated to New York between 1905 and 1908. The following is the list of their children:  

  1. Mary Redden was born in Ballynakill. Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland on the 7th of January 1877 (Birth Registration Copy Attached). I believe that Mary died in her infancy in 1877.


  1. Patrick Francis Redden was born 10th of April 1879 in Esker, Galway (Birth Registration Copy Attached). Thomas Pender was in attendance at his birth, why they were all living in Esker is probably the source of another family story. Patrick Francis Redden died in New York City, New York, New York, USA on 21 March 1924 more about his life to follow in another segment.


  1. Thomas Patrick Redden was born on the 27th of November 1881 in Ballynakill. Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland (Birth Registration Copy Attached). He died in New York City, New York, New York, USA on the 25 February 1916 at the age of 33. To be continued.


  1. John Michael Redden (My Grandfather) was born in Ballynakill. Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland on the 24th of February 1885 (Birth Registration Copy Attached).   He died in Bronx, Bronx, New York, USA on the 07th of October 1941. His biography to be posted in another discussion.


  1. Michael Redden was born in Ballynakill. Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland on the 23rd of March 1888 (Birth Registration Copy Attached). He died in Skerries, Balrothy Dublin, Ireland on the 5th of December 1959. Once again further information will be discussed at another date. If anyone has information about his life and family I can include them in that discussion.


  1. Mary Bridget Redden was born about 1891 in Ballynakill. Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland. Regrettably, I believe that this may be a sad story. The only mention of Mary Bridget is in the 1901 Census of Ireland and there are no records that I can find in regard to her birth or her untimely demise. It is my assumption that she may have died sometime between 1904 and 1906. I am making this opinion on the fact that Patrick Francis Redden named his first child Mary Bridget Redden in 1907 in honor of his late sister. Then there is the question as to my grandfather John Michael Redden sudden departure from Ireland using his Brother Michael’s name for passage to New York from Queenstown on the 19th of March 1908.


  1. Edward (Ned) Redden was born in Ballynakill. Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland on the 13th of July 1894 (Birth Registration Copy Attached). He died in Ballynakill. Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland on the 14th of March 1967. More to follow on Ned.


Bridget Pender Redden was born in 1856 as evidenced from her age given on the marriage registration of 1875 and I can only presume that she died in the period of 1923 to 1934. I was unable to find Bridget’s death registration listed on the GRO website. As for her birth that would only have been available from the Parish Registers and those are reportedly lost to history.


Michael Redden was a farmer all his life and his farm appeared to be somewhat substantial from the photographs that I receive from Christie Cunniff a neighbor of the Reddens. A few years ago my computer was hacked and I lost all of these photos, so I have nothing to share with you here. Michael died in Ballynakill. Longford, Clonfert, Galway, Ireland on the 21 of November 1934 (Death Registration Attached) He and Bridget are buried in the Clonfert Cemetery along with his son Edward and his wife Ellen (Lily) Comerford Redden. (Photo Attached)


Additional Information
Date of Birth 6th Apr 1856 VIEW SOURCE
Date of Death 21st Nov 1934 VIEW SOURCE
Occupation Michael was a farmer on land that was owned by his father-in-law Thomas Pender 1813-1873