Saturday, 30 June 2018

More Clynch... and a tiny breakthrough

Do you remember Martin, Edward and Mary Clinch, who emigrated to Aurora, Illinois, in 1854? I wrote about them previously here, and mentioned Edward's tragic death in a train accident, here. They were all more than likely the children of Patrick Clynch, from Athgarvan, Co. Kildare, and I suspect my third great-grandmother, Anne (Clynch) Byrne, may have been their sister too. Well, there's more to their story. 

It seems, shortly after Edward Clinch obtained U.S. citizenship in 1860, he returned to Ireland, with his sister, Mary.[1] Imagine making that trip across the Atlantic twice! Perhaps they were homesick, or maybe Edward just wanted to avoid the American Civil War breaking out in 1861. If he did return to Ireland, it would explain why the U.S. census enumerators missed him, in 1870. 

Their brother Martin Clinch and his growing family remained in Aurora, where Martin worked for the railway. In 1870, he was found in Aurora, living with his wife Cath and six of their seven known children.[2] 

Clinch household, 1870 Census, Aurora

Back home in Athgarvan, Anne (Clynch) Byrne's son, John Byrne (my direct-line ancestor) and his first wife, Mary Markey, were raising their family. In 1862, Mary Clinch was Godmother for their son Andrew, while in 1863, Edward Clinch was Godfather for their son John.[3] Athgarvan was a small village. There were only 455 people living in the combined townland of Blackrath and Athgarvan in 1861, and Clinch/Clynch was not a common surname.[4] I'm thinking two of the emigrants returned.

Plus, there is a record of Edward Clinch, an American citizen, aged 44 years, arriving back in the U.S. on 16 October 1871. Mary Murray, the suspected married name of Mary Clinch, also an American, was listed on the ship's passenger list, two lines below Edward.[5] 

Plus, plus, Martin Clinch, aged only about 55 years, died in Aurora, one month prior, on 16 September 1871.[6] Did Edward and Mary receive an urgent message to return to the U.S., to help care for Martin's soon-to-be destitute family? It looks like it. They were together in the 'Murry' household in 1880, living with three 'adopted' children, who were easily recognisable as the children of Martin Clinch.[7] 

Murry household, 1880 Census, Aurora

Plus, plus, plus - Now, with the help of a previously mentioned descendant of Martin Clinch, I've discovered an actual DNA connection between our two families. She matches a great-granddaughter of Anne (Burns) Rogers, the youngest daughter of Anne (Clynch) Byrne. It's a small match - only one segment measuring ten centimorgans - but it's a start.

[1] Edward Clinch, 1860, 'Illinois, County Naturalization Records, 1800-1998', FamilySearch.
[2] Martin Clinch household, Aurora, Kane, Illinois, in the U.S. Census, 1870, FamilySearch.
[3] Catholic Parish Registers, Baptism register for Newbridge Parish, Co. Kildare, MF 04209/06, NLI.
[4] Census, 1861, Ireland, Area, population and number of houses, Ireland, Vol I and II, Co. Kildare (pages 49-80), Barony of Connell, p. 55, histpop.
[5] Edward Clinch, 1871, 'New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1891', FamilySearch
[6] Burial of Martin Clinch, 1871, excerpt from Calvary Cemetery, Aurora, Illinois: Tombstones & Obituaries (2006, Fox Valley Genealogical Society, Napperville, Illinois), pp 35, 141.
[7] John Murry household, Aurora, Kane, Illinois, in the U.S. Census, 1880, FamilySearch.

1 comment:

  1. Good for you being able to track a family going back and forth. It's hard enough when a family stays put in one place!


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