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I found two generations of my Erskine line in the 1901 Kilcar census:

Margaret (Byrne) and Patrick Erskine are my 2x great-grandparents. Their son Peter Erskine would have been around 21-22 years old at the time. He emigrated to the USA 1-2 years before the census was taken. I believe Peter was born on March 18, 1879 in Kilcar. Peter is my great-grandfather.

The 1901 census page says "Residents of a house 6 in Kilcar (Kilcar, Donegal)" but I have no idea where that location might be in the Kilcar parish. I'm visiting Kilcar for the first time in a few weeks and I'd love to see if the ruins of the home still stand.



Friday 13th September 2019, 05:02PM

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  • The property you have found is in the townland of Kilcar (as opposed to the whole parish). That townland is easily located using Griffiths Valuation. Each property in it has a specific reference number eg 2a, 2 b etc.

    Looking at Griffiths Valuation for 1857 there were no Erskine households in the townland then. So they evidently acquired the farm between that year and the 1901 census. Ignore the house number in the census, that was the enumerator’s private numbering system and does not relate to any real house number. It varied from census to census, so there may be a different number if the family were still there in 1911. But it’s likely the same house. Your townland alone was sufficient to identify you and so there were no real house numbers then.

    Kilcar townland is just to the west of the village of Kilcar Village.

    There is a set of records in the Valuation office in Dublin which takes Griffiths Valuation forward up to the 1920s and in some cases beyond. They are called the Valuation revision records. It should show you which property the Erskine family were occupying in 1901. You can identify them on the maps attached to the Griffiths website. Or you could go to the townland and ask around. You might find someone who knows of the family. But I think checking the Valuation revision records and comparing that information to the Griffiths map is a more reliable way of locating the house.

    Elwyn, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Friday 13th September 2019, 06:11PM
  • Hi James,

    If you want to make contact with someone in Kilcar, log on to the local community webstie and you should find email addresses etc there.

    There's also a related Facebook page called Kilcar Online and I'm sure they will be more than glad to help you.

    All the best,


    Donaghmore Donegal

    Tuesday 17th September 2019, 11:24AM
  • There is an Erskine house about one mile from Kilcar on in the townland of Towney  on the road to Muckrossroad

    Tuesday 17th September 2019, 12:13PM
  • Hi James,
    Contact me by email on


    Tuesday 17th September 2019, 05:52PM
  • Found it! Thank you to the researchers who visited the Valuation Office in Dublin. I can't wait to visit soon.


    Thursday 3rd October 2019, 11:05AM