Share This:

(Crossposting with Cong (Mayo) Message Board)    Hi, I'm looking for marriage info and children's baptisms for Edward Varley (born c 1820, Co Galway (?)) and Mary Carney (b. c 1820, Co Mayo). They had Pat (born Co. Mayo, 1841), Bridget (Apr 1845, Mayo), John (Mar 1854, Mayo), Mary (Oct 1858, Staffordshire, England), and Edward T. (13 May 1859, Staffordshire, England). Obviously the family moved to England for work between 1854 and 1858. Ultimately they moved to Pennsylvania in 1870. Since the couple married in Ireland, but they were in different counties, I'm assuming they may have lived near the border, and there is some suggestion through DNA that the parish of Cong may be a candidate. It seems that pre-1850ish records are not online. Does this mean they haven't survived, or are they just not available online yet? Any suggestions as to where to look are welcome! Regards, Anita



Thursday 24th January 2019, 10:43PM

Message Board Replies

  • Hi Anita,

    I tried but only found this one - looks like Cong might be the parish.

    Name:Edward James VarillyDate of Birth:14-Jul-1920
    Date of Baptism:15-Jul-1920Address:CongParish/District:Cong RC parishGender:MaleCountyCo. Mayo
    Denomination:Roman Catholic
    Father:Anthony VarillyMother:Catherine MorrinOccupation:
    Sponsor 1 /
    Informant 1:Michael Morrin Sponsor 2 /
    Informant 2:Brigid Burke 

    Also tried 1821 Irish Census; there are 12 Varleys in Galway but none in Mayo (free at On closer inspection it is a duplication of the same family!

    Do you know whether they were R C or C of I? If R C the only records for Cong available at (free) are baptisms from 1870!

    If C of I the Representative Church Body Library Dublin has Cong baptisms 1746-1863 marraiges 1745-1956 & burials 1745 - 1863 (pay site) has 140 Varley marriages in Mayo 1746 to 1920 (5 C of I, 19 Civil & 45 R C)

    Let me know if you want further details of any of these



    ColCaff, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Saturday 26th January 2019, 07:47AM
  • Thanks so much for your reply! I had not found this 1821 census listing. My ancestor was “Edward,” but maybe he was recorded as “Edmond.” Not sure how common that would have been. The handwriting actually looks almost like it could be “Edward.” The age is about right—I had him born 1815-1820, so 1816 works. I wonder how plausible it would have been that he married Mary Carney from Co. Mayo if the border was 25 miles away. To us now that seems close, but I don’t know about back then. Anyway, more food for thought! Regards, Anita



    Monday 28th January 2019, 04:03AM
  • Anita - May I ask where in Pennsylvania your Varley ancestors moved to in 1870?

    By coincidence, my great-great-grandfather, WIlliam Carney (born 1829), married Mary Varley (1831-1914).  Acccoding to information the Family Heritage Center in Ballinrobe found for me, William was a shepherd in the Cong area.  By 1857 they had moved to Ballinrobe.  They had three children that I can document:

    - Katherine who spelled her maiden name Kearney (1852 to 1909) married Patrick Kanavy in Cong in 1870.  They then immigrated in the early 1870's to the area of Naples, New York and then to Kane, Pennsylvania.

    - Mary (1860 - 1932) was my great-grandmother. She also immigrated in the 1870's to the Naples, NY area and then to Kane, Pannsylvania.  Katherine and Mary lived just a few doors apart in Kane and the families were very close.  

    - Patrick (circa 1860 birth) married Bridget Jennings in Cong in 1878 and worked in Cong and then Ballinrobe before immigrating to the United States in 1903.  He bought three of his (many) children with him.  The other children and Bridget appear to have stayed in the Ballinrobe area although documentation is limited.  Patrick's initial stop was Kane (I have a record of his arrival in New York and the notation by the customs official that Patrick had a letter from his sister Katherine, who was vouching for him, and that Patrick was going there to be with his two sisters).  His daughter Catherine, who emmigrated with him, married her aunt's son, Charles (yes, first cousins).  Catherine, Charles, and Patrick then moved to Portland, Oregan.

    I've always been curious as to what drew Katherine and her husband Patrick Kanavy to rural New York and then why they and her sister Mary (and her American husband) moved on to Kane.  Any idea why your family chose Pennsylvania?

    You mentioned DNA in your post.  I have tested through and have matches with descendants from my Cong/Ballinrobe family.  I have gotten to know some through lots of emails.  Between our Carney and Varley connections, I suspect we might have DNA connection, also.

    If you would like to "chat" further, please feel free to contact me directly at  I live in Maryland.


    Cathy H.

    Friday 30th August 2019, 08:54PM
  • Sorry for the late response, Cathy! I just saw this. My Varley ancestors moved to New Castle, PA.

    I have my DNA at ancestry. I am under Anita Chang.






    Saturday 17th October 2020, 09:35PM