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I am hoping to find out when my great grandmother Josephine Mary Booth (b 1874 in Balrothery) and 2 of her children Henry Joseph Booth (b 1901 known as Harry) and her daughter Mary Josephine Booth (b 1909) went to Chile. We have letters from her in Santiago dating from 1933 to 1938 but cannot find out any other details. The last known address for the family in Dublin is in 1914. 

I would be very grateful for any information as it is a complete mystery as to why and when they went to Chile.

My grandparents had come to England by the 1930s and the whereabouts of 2 other siblings is unknown.  One possibly went to Canada. Other relations were in NZ and Jamaica.

Thank you for any help you can give me.


Sally Rafferty

Monday 16th April 2018, 11:52PM

Message Board Replies

  • Hi Sraff

    we do not appear to have a local volunteer, however I noted your query as I live about 10 miles from the small village of Balrothery, which is just south of Balbriggan at the northern end of County Dublin in an administrative district now called Fingal (this is recent). I emphasise the size of Balrothery as a village as it is also a large registration district so births etc would be registered in Balrothery but could occur as far away as Malahide and Swords, up to 15 miles south and also taking in Skerries and Donabate. The only Booth records for Balrothery district do not include the names you mention and I did not see them on a national search on Irish Genealogy, this is the civil register and can be searched here select civil records as church records are incomplete except for Dublin and Kerry. There is a baptism for a Mary Josephine Booth in 1887 in Dublin, St Michans, lived at 22 O'Connell Avenue, which is in Phibsboro, north of Dublin city centre. The central civil records may be missing some small number of records that were not sent in from the district so they may exist locally.

    Where did you get your dates, if they lived in Balrothery nearby Balbriggan was very big in the woolen industry, winning prizes around Europe, a lot of people from there went to the US to help establish the woolen industry there so maybe that is why they went to Chile. By the way there is a strong Irish connection to Chile from Mayo. So obviously there in the 18th century too. The expertise for the woolen industry in Balbriggan came from the UK. Main factory is still there but mills long gone. 


    St Peters Louth

    Thursday 19th April 2018, 09:30PM
  • Hi Again

    I see Henry Joseph registerd in the civil registry for Dublin South, Rathmines, 21 Leinster Road West, mother Kelly born 1st March 1901 and Mary Josephine Booth mother Josephine Kelly born 4th October 1908. Same address. See the father is called Hamilton, this surname is associated with Balrothery and Balbriggan if there is some connection. his occupation is given however as a solicitors, the census of Ireland for 1901 and 1911 are free to view online, default is 1911. The family are there in 1901, Hamiltons age is transcribed as 57 but looking at the form it is 37, she is 27 and they have a servant, his birth county is given as Kings County which is now Offaly, he died in 1911 in February at 33 Buckingham Street, from the 1911 census taken after hsi death they are living here, this suggests the family fortunes suffered, although she appears to be living with her sister also widowed. Buckingham Street would not have been the best area at the time I think, edges of a red light area, famed in story and song, If you are so inclined you can look up the area known as the Monto, large Wikipedia entry so possibly this is why if the chance offered they were off.

    The census is here search under Hamilton Booth for 1901 and Josephine Booth for 1911, both in Dublin. He was Church of Ireland (Protestant) she was a Catholic. 

    I assume these are your people who it appears to me have suffered both a loss of work and residence, it appears he had acute pneumonia in his R. and not sure of word, could be lobe, so right lobe.

    This appears to me to be the correct family, his been Cof I and from Kings county is interesting if you wanted to find his birth on Irish Genealogy use, he is born in 1864 in Parsonstown registry district, south Offally main town Birr, his father was a clergy man so another reason she went to Chile, the mothers name I cannot make out other than Christian name, you could of course search for siblings and see if the writing is any clearer, father is Thomas, Birr is famous for its castle and telescope if you are of a mind to look it up, also the church of Ireland library will have info on the father and I have always found them helpful, come back if you want the link. 

    A great aunt of mine married a Booth man in Leitrim, he was a widower with children when she married him, no more children tohugh.

    Regards and hope I have not confused the issue,


    St Peters Louth

    Thursday 19th April 2018, 10:30PM
  • Hello Again

    having now seen your previous post I realise you know some of what I posted. I found Josephine Mary Kelly born on 4th April 1874 to a John Kelly Farmer and Agnes Early, cannot make out the townland but it may be in Lusk which appears to have a similar named townland, the birth as suspected is registered in Balrothery, district Holmpatrick (now commonly known as Skerries) a lovely village on the coast about 20 miles north of Dublin.

    They were married in Belfast where he was a hospital clerk, given address and her address is a hotel in another lovely village in north Dublin, Howth, she appears to have worked there. Her witness is the sister McKenny who she was with in 1911 in Buckingham Street. I attack the certs, ead through page, they are free online at Irish Genealogy also, sign in but free.

    I remembered today  there was a huge general strike in Ireland in 1913, effected Dublin greatly and would have influenced people to leave I imagine, also this is the years prior to the 1916 rebellion. Some info on the strike here.

    During the 1800s mainly in rural areas priests arranged for people to emigrate to certain places in Canada, USA and Argentina so maybe someone there of influence arranged the migration to Chile but I have no idea of this, the library in Pearse Street in Dublin may assist. this is the family history section there is also an archives section.




    St Peters Louth

    Friday 20th April 2018, 08:35PM

    Attached Files

  • Hello Pat. Thank you for doing such thorough research on my family.  I really do appreciate it.  Whilst I do have some of the info about the Booths and Kellys that you mention, it is the background info about the times and Dublin that is fascinating. My great grandma had a tough time I am sure. In 1911 just a few weeks after her husband’s death she is living with her sister - also a widow.  It appears that she kept her 2 youngest with her and I have found her 3 other boys on the 1911 census living/staying with her extended family.  My grandad and one of his brothers joined the army in 1922.  My grandad was stationed at the Stewart Barracks.  

    I will definitely follow up on the links you have given me. They will help to put the lives of my family into context and may even provide me with further avenues to explore...

    Thank you once again for your generous gift of knowledge.  Sally Rafferty

    Sally Rafferty

    Friday 20th April 2018, 10:02PM
  • HI Again S

    your interest in hitstory prompted me to look up Stewart Barracks which I never knew was the Curragh Camp, still a major army base in Ireland. If he joined in 1922 he was involved in the civil war 1922 to 1923 and if he was in the Free State Army he must have been involved in the War of Independence, there are statements of thise involved online and include the name Booth, unfortunately it also brings back polling booth but there are entries regarding Booth as people, see We are in the middle of the decade of centenaries here so each year there is some commeration or other. 

    Also there was a novel written by James Plunkett in 1969 and reprinted in 2013 called Strumpet City covering the lockout of 1913 etc, I read it back in the day and it is great but tough times, Googled it and see a review here from the Irish Times our national TV seervice RTE made a series of it in the 1980s I think and I see at least some episodes on You Tube, assume it was shot around Dublin in period so you might enjoy watching it. 

    The Monto used to be Montgomery Street, then Corporation Street and now James Joyce Street in Dublin, I worked out of an office there for about 5 years, it is brushing up its image lately. 

    If you can lay your hands on a copy of Strumpet City or on Kindle enjoy.


    St Peters Louth

    Saturday 21st April 2018, 08:20PM