We find Thomas Little and his family in an 1821 census fragment, living in Carraroe, near Loughrea, Co.Galway. His father was a Protestant and his mother was a Catholic. They were not among the poorest in Irish society yet their family’s fortunes were clearly on a downward path. His father had a large house on 18 acres and his brothers and sisters were educated. Yet Thomas was a gardener and his brothers were unskilled labourers. In 1822 Galway suffered one of its frequent famines and it is likely that Thomas’ father lost his 18 acres at this time. 

Eliza Lally’s family is also in an 1821 census fragment, in Knockatogher, north of Loughrea. Her father rented only 6 acres so, with a three-generation family of about 14. Eliza’s family was dramatically broken up in July 1821 when her brother murdered his grandmother and they moved away. Thomas and Eliza married in about 1823. Both their families were facing disruption and decline and they were getting through another famine so they, and three brothers, took the bold and heart-breaking decision to leave Ireland. In mid-1823 they all joined the army of the Honourable East India Company.

 

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Additional Information
Date of Birth 1st Jan 1800
Date of Death 5th Nov 1877
Townland born Carraroe (Lickerigg) in 1821 census
Spouse (First Name/s and Maiden/Surname) Eliza Lally

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