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I am looking for any information of John Nelson (birth and marriage date and places) and his wife, Margaret Moloney or Molony (her birth and marriage date and places).

I know they had children in Scarriff, County Clare being James b 1857 (my great grandfather); Mary b1858; Bridget b1860; Margaret b1861; Catherine b1863; Michael b1865; Sarah b1869; Patrick b1871; John b1872; and Timothy b1876.

John Nelson died 25 December 1898 in Scarriff, County Clare

Margaret Nelson (nee Moloney) died 1 November 1914 in Scarriff, County Clare

I also know that between 1874 and 1891 seven of the above children immigrated to Australia and I believe that the other three stayed in Ireland.  I am descended from James Nelson b. 1857 the oldest child.

I would love to know about the marriage and births of John Nelson and Margaret Moloney and what parish and counties they each came from as I know nothing of their marriage or their births and who their parents were.

I live in Sydney, Australia and would appreciate any help that someone can give me.

I would love to connect with family.


Gail Bryant nee Hunter



Saturday 31st October 2020, 10:39PM

Message Board Replies

  • Hi Gail:

    I see that Margaret was aged 86 when she died and that her residence was Ballyboy.  Her son, John was the informant and present at her death.  I believe that Margaret and John were listed in the 1911 Census in Moynoe townland.  Ballyboy may have been a place name associated with Moynoe.  I can check this out with a Moynoe farmer :)

    I also see that John Nelson married Helena Walsh in 1918 in Scarriff and that he was a son of John Nelson.  I have attached the link to the civil marriage record:

    John Nelson died in 1944 aged 75 and his wife Helena was his informant.  Here is the civil death record:

    I will ask a local person about the family as I don't see any headstone in Moynoe graveyard for them.  

    I'll reply back when I have further information.


    All the best,




    Jane Halloran Ryan

    Wednesday 2nd December 2020, 02:08PM
  • Hello Jane

    This is very helpful information. Thank you.  The marriage for this John Nelson to Helena Walch is his 2nd marriage.  This John Nelson is the son of John Nelson and Margaret Moloney.  It would be great if I could find more about the parents and where and when they married and where each were born.  From my previous research, I thought the Moloney family might have come from O'Gonnoloe (not sure if I have that spelt right) so I wondered if their marriage might have been there?  Also with John Nelson snr I have no information on at all as to where he was born and who his parents were.

    It is terrific that you might be able to ask someone local.

    I look forward to hearing more if possible.  Thank you so much for your help so far.  Much appreciated.

    Best regards



    Thursday 3rd December 2020, 11:47PM
  • Hi Gail:

     I have spoken to a local person who lived in that area.  The house is no longer but a local family owns the land where the house stood.  It seems that the family was most likely buried in Moynoe graveyard but there isn't any stone there.  It's possible that they may have been buried in the old graveyard in Tuamgraney.  The Clare Library would have a list of the headstones under Tuamgraney civil parish. You have mentioned a possible Ogonnelloe connection.  I will ask  Mike McNamara to respond to that part of the query.  If I come across anything else, I'll let you know.  
    All the best,  Jane

    Jane Halloran Ryan

    Friday 4th December 2020, 09:31PM
  • Hello Gail,

    Margaret Moloney would have been born in 1828 according to the information you have given. Our records in O'Gonnelloe started in 1832 and at that time there was a possible ten Moloney families living in the parish into which Margaret could have been born. Margaret would have been married in her own parish but our marriage records did not start until 1857.

    Gail, i'm sorry i cannot be of more help to you. There is just one Moloney family in the parish now and if i can find any information i will let you know.


    Michael McNamara, 


    Mikepat, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Friday 4th December 2020, 10:18PM
  • Hello Jane and Michael

    Firstly, thank you Jane for your information.  I will try to get in touch with Clare Library to see if they have any further information for gravestones from Tuamgraney Parish.  Thank you very much for your helpful information.

    Hello Michael,

    I'm wondering if you would be able to check the marriage records for O'Gonnelloe Parish in 1857 when these records began as you said because Margaret Moloney's (Molony or Maloney) first child was James Nelson and his was baptised in 1857 in Scariff, Co Clare so there is a slight chance that Margaret married her husband, John Nelson in that year also (1857) in O'Gonnelloe?  I believe that Margaret's father was Patrick Moloney but I don't know who her mother was.

    Thank you for your help todate, Michael

    I look forward to hearing more soon.




    Sunday 6th December 2020, 09:56AM
  • Hello Gail and Jane,

    The 1901 and 1911 Census references for John Nelson and his mother Margaret are also, indirectly, of interest to me. I am an Australian descendant of Catherine 'Kitty' Nelson who departed the Scarriff Workhouse circa 1850, destined for Tasmania, where she married a fellow countryman, John Quinn. Via Ancestry and My Heritage my dna has been linked to other Quinn-Nelson descendants (surnames McBain, Walker, Quinn, Lucas, Griggs, Jewell etc). Should you have taken a dna test I would be most interested to know whether any of these surnames appear in your list of matches. Best wishes, John Fripp, Perth, WA.



    Thursday 31st December 2020, 02:59AM
  • Hello John,

    I have tested my DNA at Ancestry along with my brother and sister.  I have also uploaded to My Heritage for myself and my sister.  My DNA tests are under my maiden name, Gail Hunter.  I don't have any links to these surnames at all in my tree but if I search on surnames under DNA matches, some do come up against DNA matches.  There is a good match for an Aaron Quinn in Australia.  I looked at public trees on Ancestry for your Catherine Nelson and John Quinn and the tree I found had her born in County Meath. Could this be your tree?  Margaret Nelson (mother on census) is Margaret Moloney and she married John Nelson and they did have a son John Nelson who is also on those census records. As far as I know, these Nelson's were all from Scarriff, County Clare and possibly the Moloney's were from O'Gonnoloe, County Clare.  I have DNA matches on many of these lines.




    Thursday 31st December 2020, 11:30PM

    Hello Gail,

    Regrets, I have searched my matches for "Hunter", "Nelson" and "Quinn" through Ancestry and My Heritage and unearthed nothing that might connect our possible mutual origins, but for a Sally Hunter of Australia with two small segments in common. Unfortunately she also matches with my paternal 1st cousin who is on the wrong side for an Irish connection. Otherwise I have drawn only blanks. Nevertheless, I still believe there may well be some connection. With regard to the family tree you have found online, yes, that is from a Quinn-Nelson dna match for me. But, I have been completely unable to establish any documentary support for the Moynalvey, Co Meath origin. Rather I suspect there may have been some confusion with "Parish of Moynoe" somewhere along the way. But, as we both know, so many generations back combined with the unfortunate state of Irish records makes our researches decidedly difficult.

    Very best wishes for your searching,




    Friday 1st January 2021, 01:04PM
  • Hi John,

    Yes, it is possible that we have a connection on the Nelson side.  DNA weakens over time, so with any DNA connection back beyond 2nd cousin, the DNA might not be passed on to 3rd cousins etc.  I don't know anything about my John Nelson who married Margaret Moloney and who raised their children in Scarriff, Co. Clare.  I know a little bit about their son John Nelson and all his siblings (a lot of whom immigrated to Queensland) who is on the census with his mother Margaret Nelson from Scarriff.  Do you have some information on him  that we could compare and so is he your ancestor?  If we were able to compare what we each have then maybe that would confirm if we share the same family.  I did lots of research on this family awhile ago, so I do have informotion on the family in general.  I'm unsure of your direct line.  Do you have a tree somewhere you can share?




    Saturday 2nd January 2021, 11:37PM
  • Hello again Gail,

    Unfortunately I have only very recently come across the name John Nelson and have no documentation to definitively connect him with me. I have however, from John Grenham's website and maps  worked out where his property was and still (via Google Maps) appears to be.

    Should you have a subscription with Ancestry you would find there my most comprehensive (and public) tree. Catherine Nelson appears therein as my 2xgm. I also have a tree with My Heritage. My entries on both sites are under my name "John Fripp". The Queensland connection is interesting. My brothers have dna shared with a Kim Johnson of Australia and a Gust Johnson of USA, both of whom share segments with my brothers and each other and one with a Melody Schubert, who is also descended from my Catherine Nelson. Melody, her mother Suzanne McBain and I share segments and all five of us (Fripp bros X 3 and Suzanne and Melody) are descended from Catherine Nelson. 

    Here is the interesting bit. Kim Johnson (My Heritage) records her Queensland (Muttaburra) descent from a Margaret Nelson. There was a Margaret Nelson who arrived in Sydney, Australia aboard the "Thomas Arbuthnot" circa 1853 from Co Clare. My Catherine Nelson (Scarriff Workhouse) arrived a little earlier (c 1851) into Hobart. My guess is that Catherine and Margaret Nelson were probably sisters or perhaps close cousins. I seem to recall your Scarriff ancestors arrived in Australia approximately a generation later than mine. Nevertheless this does not preclude a mutual MRCA who lived some short time before Irish records might clarify our opaque brick wall.

    It is totally unconnected with our family history common interest, but have you any family connection with the farming community west of Parkes, NSW?




    Sunday 3rd January 2021, 02:35PM
  • Hi John,

    Answered via your email



    Monday 4th January 2021, 10:27PM