Patrick Tobin 1770

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Patrick Tobin (Gowran, Kilkenny, Ireland – Circa 1832, Northern Bay, Bay de Verde District, Newfoundland)

In Searching for Missing Friends: Irish Immigrant Advertisements Placed in “The Boston Pilot," 1831-1920, I found the following extract of an advertisement dated 29 September 1855 from Michael Tobin who was living in Thorold, Ontario. Michael was searching for his brothers Patrick and Richard in Canada. The advertisement was in Volume 3, page 378.

OF RICHARD & PATRICK TOBIN, sons of Patrick Tobin and Judith Keeffe, of Parish Goran, co Kilkenny; when last heard from, one was in Prince Edward Island, and the other in Black Head, North Shore, Newfoundland. Information was received by their brother Michl Tobin, Thorold, Canada West, where he has lived for the last 14 years.

Please note that most genealogy and family history researchers refer to the 8 Volume publication and the three on-line databases as “Missing Friends”. My discovery was made before the three databases were available. (The validation that they are my family is described below.)

The following web sites have “Missing Friends” databases: Boston College; AmericanAncestors; and Ancestry. Boston College’s “Missing Friends” database is named: Information Wanted, It is free. The other versions are subscription sites.

Please be aware that the Boston College record for the above advertisement extract is inconsistent. It listed Prince Edward Ireland as their Place of Arrival in Canada. In fact, it may have been the Place of Arrival. I have not read the actual advertisement. Also, there is less information in the Boston College version.

The records in the other two databases are consistent. Unfortunately, there are no images of the original advertisements in the three databases. Ancestry’s version has indexed each family member. Personally, I prefer the Ancestry version because of the indexing.

Please note that I can’t find records in Canada, Ireland and Newfoundland that pin-point the Tobin family’s Dates and Places of Birth, Baptism, Arrival, Death and Burial.

A Certificated Canadian Genealogist (also an author and teacher) has validated that all five family members listed had lived in Northern Bay, Bay de Verde District of Newfoundland. He has validated records that the father Patrick was married twice. He married Anne Foly (aka Foley) in 1822. In addition, he has validated the marriage record for son Richard to Mary Hogan in 1824. Finally, he has identified another son James (who may have passed away before the advertisement in the Boston Pilot newspaper).

In addition, he provided a list of Richard and Mary Hogan’s children’s baptism dates. After he validated the records, I added them to my database. (I am a descendant of Patrick and Judith.)

Since then, the Immaculate Conception Parish Register records for 1838 – 1891 Baptisms and Marriages were transcribed and indexed by volunteers, The databases are available on the free Newfoundland Grand Banks web site. Search for the Bay de Verde District’s Vital Records. A marriage record for the son Patrick to Elizabeth Walsh is in the Immaculate Conception Parish Register for Marriages.

Ancestry describes the “Missing Friends” database as follows:

Searching for Missing Friends: Irish Immigrant Advertisements Placed in “The Boston Pilot," 1831-1920 

“Original data: Harris, Ruth-Ann M., Donald M. Jacobs, and B. Emer O’Keeffe, editors. Searching for Missing Friends: Irish Immigrant Advertisements Placed in “The Boston Pilot 1831–1920”. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1989.

“For nearly a century, the Boston Pilot served as a beacon for Irish immigrants seeking information on loved ones they had lost contact with. Between 1831 and 1920, more than 45,000 advertisements were placed in the newspaper by recent immigrants looking for family who had come over earlier, by relatives back in Ireland, or by families seeking information on people who had moved elsewhere in the U.S. looking for employment.

“Ruth-Ann Harris, Donald Jacobs, and Emer O’Keefe extracted these records from issues of the Pilot for their multivolume work Searching for Missing Friends: Irish Immigrant Advertisements Placed in The Boston Pilot 1831–1920. This database includes indexed images of those extracts.

“What You Can Find in the Records

“The advertisements are particularly helpful to family historians because they often include details like the immigrant’s town of origin in Ireland, immigration details, and names of extended family. Additionally, they may mention relationships, military service, occupations, and addresses of parties requesting information.

“Because of the popularity of the “missing friends” advertisements, submissions were received from well beyond Boston, and queries were made about immigrants living all over the U.S.”

There are about 45,000 extracts and about 96,500 records in the Ancestry “Missing Friends” database.

I classify all versions of “Missing Friends” as both an Ireland and an Irish Diaspora database in my free genealogy seminars and free individual consultations.


Ancestry; Tithe Applotment List:

Surname Name Page  Number Townland

Toban     James  28     28         Watree

Toban     Richard  6     23          Redbog

Tobin      John    19     11          Clover & Whiteakers

Tobin      Richard 20      6          Blanchfieldspark

Askaboutireland; Griffiths Valuation:

Tobin            James               Blanchvilleskill       Gowran     Kilkenny

Tobin            James               Gowran                Gowran     Kilkenny

Tobin            James               Main Street           Gowran     Kilkenny

Tobin            Kieran               Kilkenny Road       Gowran     Kilkenny

Tobin            Mary                 Blanchvilleskill       Gowran     Kilkenny

Additional Information
Date of Birth 1770  
Date of Death 1832  

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