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My GGG Grandparents were Mark Kearney (b1810) and Annie Burnes (b 1810).

Their daughter, Mary was my GG grandmother, and she married Thomas Fahey, also of Galway - Dunally.

Mary was born to Mark and Annie (Burnes) Kearney in 1837 on Tawin Island.  She emigrated to New Zealand with her brother Michael (who married Bridget Fahey sister of Thomas), and her sister, Bridget.

I am visiting Galway, and Tawin Island in particular, in June 2014, and hope there are still some living descendents in the area.  I wish to see important places to the family, their church and graves, and any other vital bits of information for my family tree.


I also generally want to have a look around the area at any sacred or historical places.  I live in Christchurch, NZ, and after our earthquakes we are left with few will be refreshing to visit a place that is still upright!


Please contact me if you have ANY information at all.  It will be very appreciated.


Kerry Driscoll


Tuesday 17th Dec 2013, 09:35AM

Message Board Replies

  • Kerry:

    You may have already searched the 1901 and 1911 census records for Tawin. There were three Burns/Byrns families in Tawin West at that time.

    I also found this article on Tawin Island.

    Enjoy your trip next June.

    Roger McDonnell

    Castlemore Roscommon, IrelandXO Volunteer ☘

    Tuesday 17th Dec 2013, 04:04PM
  • Thank you Roger

    Glad to see my googling is working, yes, I had read that.  I was going through the census's and assume they are related but don't know how, or what became of them.  I wonder if there are still Burnes on Tawin?

    I also found a Killian Driscoll writing about megolithic axes found on mass, on Tawin. Good to see my Cork clan active elsewhere.



    Tuesday 17th Dec 2013, 07:03PM
  • Hello Kerry, I have noticed your post on "Reaching Out" and I also have an ancestor from Tawin Island (Gaeilge Oile?n Tamhain).  My great-great-grandmother was Mary Fahy who was born in the nearby village of Tonroe in 1855, baptised in the church at Oranmore, married in the church at Oranmore & buried there when she died in 1936.  She was the daughter of John Fahy (c.1813 - 1893) & Bridget Walsh.  John was listed in Griffiths Valuation, alongwith Martin and James Fahy as both of Tonroe and Tawin Island.

    There is more than likely a connection with your great-great-grandfather Thomas Fah(e)y, but I'm not aware of it at the moment, although if anyone else on this forum might be able to help it would be appreciated.

    With genealogy, are you aware of the Irish naming traditions, which sometimes can be of assistance in working out relationships ?  I've certainly found that my Tonroe and Tawin Island families used it during the 1800s.

    Good luck with your trip this year, I visited Tonroe in 2010 & we were lucky enought to be introduced to Pete Kearney, then in his late 70s who was a wealth of information on the history of the local area.  Our hosts at the local B&B in Tonroe, Tom & Sal Cannon introduced us to him.  Their B&B is on the main highway from Galway City down the coast.  I do have the contact details for Petes' son who is an engineer in Galway City, should you need them.  He may be able to help you with your Kearney research.  Although not confirmed yet, I believe the mother of my great-great-great-grandmother Bridget Walsh may have been a Kearney.

    Are you aware that Tawin Island and the surrounding area was a centre of Irish language in the early 1900s ?  Have you also heard the traditional story that all of the Tawin Island families were originally from further down the coast, from Finavarra, near Kinvarra ?  Anyway hope this is enough for you to go on & would be happy to swap info,

    "Is fearr maidir le",


    Saturday 25th Jan 2014, 12:47AM
  • Hi Kerry,

    My Grandmother, Delia Kearney was born in Waitahuna to Michael Kearney and Bridget(nee Fahey) in 1895/96. My understanding from family members was they came from Galway. Michael was a miner in Waitahuna, eventually moving to Dunedin where I am from though now live in Australia. As a child we used to have visits from 2 brothers, both priests whose surname was Fahey I new they where related but not sure how, except it was through my Grandmother so wondering if they came from your side of the Kearney/Fahey connection.

    Hope this is of interest to you.

    Kind regards,

    Maureen Holloway

    Saturday 8th Feb 2014, 04:28AM
  • Thank you Sean

    It would be great to find if we have any connection.

    I hope I am lucky enough to meet Pete Kearney. I shall check out that B&B too, as we have not sorted out accommodation yet.

    I am very much looking forwards to the trip.


    Kerry Driscoll (NZ)


    Saturday 8th Feb 2014, 05:31AM

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