Patrick Gallagher and Bridget Fennessy

Patrick Gallagher was born around 1821 in the townland of Derrybehagh, 2kms from the village of Feakle, County Clare, Ireland.

His parents according to family story (but not proven) were Thomas Gallagher and Catherine ‘Kitty” Fennessy.

Derrybehah is a small townland of 65 acres in the parish of Feakle, Union of Scarriff, Barony of Tulla Upper, County of Clare, Province of Munster, Ireland.

John was most likely baptised at the local Roman Catholic Church in Feakle, before parish records were kept.

Some other evidence for the Gallagher family of the parish of Feakle –

  • 1827 Tithe Applotment Books, Derrybeha, Patrick Galiher
  • 1855 Griffiths Valuation of Ireland, Derrybeha, Michael Gallagher
  • 1855 Griffiths Valuation of Ireland, Corbehagh Thomas Gallagher
  • 1878 Electoral Roll for Derrybeha – Thomas and Patrick Gallagher
  • 1878 Ireland Dog Registrations for Derrybeha – Patrick Gallagher

Patrick married Bridget Fennessy in the Roman Catholic church at Feakle before 1860. The parish marriage register starts at 1860, and they don’t appear on it.

Bridget was the daughter of Edmond Fennessy (1797-1874) and Mary Conheidy (1798-1879). Edmond was a farmer at Lecarrow Lower in the parish of Feakle in 1855. She was one of at least three children born to the couple.

The couple had seven children together –

  1. Daniel born 1860 Feakle, died 1913 St Kilda, Victoria, Australia
  2. Mary ‘Nory’ born 1862 Feakle, died 1924 Sydney. Immigrated to Australia in 1878 “Samuel Plimsoll”and married Edmond Wareham in 1882 in Sydney and had six children.
  3. Bridget born 1864 Feakle, died 1946 Sydney. Immigrated to Sydney, Australia in 1879 “Pericles” and married Charles Guittet in France and had two children Charles and Delia.  Came back to Australia in 1900 on the “France” and lived in Balmain, Sydney.
  4. Edmund born 1864 Feakle, died 1940 Freemantle, West Australia. Immigrated to Australia in 1885. Married Mary Garrahy in 1888 in Victoria. Worker on the construction of the Mundaring Weir, WA. Nine children.
  5. Patrick born 1866 Feakle, died 1941 Feakle. Married Mary Devaney in 1900. Seven children. They appear on the 1901 census living at Derrybeha with father Patrick.
  6. Catherine born 1868 Feakle, died 1933 Raheen Hospital, Clare, Ireland. Kate Hynes, aged 65, farmers wife, died in hospital from shock due to burns sustained when her clothes caught fire. Married Patrick Hynes 1902 Feakle. 4 children.
  7. John born 1870 Feakle, died 1952 Canterbury, Vic, Australia. John immigrated to Queensland, Australia in 1891. He married Elizabeth Prideaux in Korumburra, Victoria in 1906 and had seven children.
  8. William born 1874 Lunatic Asylum Ennis, Clare. No further trace of him can be found in marriage, death, census or migration records.

Ennis District Lunatic Asylum

John’s (child number  7 above) daughter Doris told us that John believed his mother had died when he was a young child so he was brought up by a grandmother.

I think the truth might be that poor Bridget was committed to an Asylum sometime between John’s birth and her next child – William who was born in 1874 in the Ennis Lunatic Asylum.

Sadly Bridget Gallagher died six years later in the asylum at the age of 45 years on 27 February 1880. Her death certificate states she was a farmer’s wife, and that she died of ulceration of the bowels.

In 1878 Patrick appears in the both the electoral roll, and the Dog registration records living at Derrybeha.

In the 1901 census for Derrybeha, near Feakle, Patrick aged 80, is recorded as widower. He is living with his son Patrick, 32 and wife Mary (Devaney), aged 30. Also with them is unmarried daughter Catherine aged 30, and Mary Devaney’s sister Margaret.

Patrick died the following year on 2 February 1902 at Bauroe near Feakle, aged 80. He was described as a farmer, widower, “probably” of heart disease, informant Patrick Gallagher of Derrybeha son.

His son Patrick, and his wife and children continued to live on the farm at Derrybeha and can be found there on the 1911 census. This Patrick is buried in the Feakle graveyard with his family.

Feakle Cemetery