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I descend from a long line of John Dudgeons. The furtherest one back was my great, great, great grandfather John Dudgeon who was a blanket weaver who appeared from nowhere in Witney, OXF the English centre for blanket weaving, from his marriage to a Sarah Rowles who was an Oxfordshire local and from a well off weaving family. According to John's burial he was born in 1765. The family story passed down was that his family was from Ireland. Fortunately my mother's first cousin did his YDNA. I worked out from that that his closest DNA match hailed from Killinanum, Denn, County Cavan, Ireland. However that person doesn't answer emails. All the top YDNA matches had surnames like Heaslip/Hazlitt/Haslip. So I think that a non paternal event has happened to have the surname change to Dudgeon!

My surmise is that John Dudgeon was perhaps a flax weaver who transferred his weaving skills to blankets. Eventually after moving from Witney to London, England, the family were weaving horsehair. By incredible good luck there still exists the 1821 census for Killinanum in the Denn townland! Nearly everyone in this town is surnamed Heaslip! So I found some elderly men who might be uncles or nephews of my John. There I am at a dead end. The 1821 census fragment is great because it details ages, building types & relationships between people – unlike the 1841 census.

I have chased a lot of records of Heaslips in Ireland & elsewhere. I have built up a big database of Heaslips eg in the army. I am wondering if anybody has seen any records of Dugeons/Dugens in County Cavan or a connection between Heaslip/Haslip Dugen/Dudgeon? 

Kind Regards,



Wednesday 29th Jun 2022, 10:02AM

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