The Family History of Michael-Patrick Crowley (Former Taoiseach)

The Family History of Michael-Patrick Crowley

I want to share the story of my family; it takes us across 300 years. The Muskerry branch of the Crowleys was established in the late 1570 around Macroom, an area which remained under the MacCarthy Muskerry until 1702. Research was facilitated by the rare occurrence of the name in the area, recorded pedigrees. The Crowleys there stem from one or two original ones from Carbery which settled there in the late 1570's.

The pedigree reads; Michael b 1959, son of William b. 1915, son of Michael b 1886, son of William b. 1856, son of John b. 1809, son of Cornelius d 1842, son of Daniel 1766, son of Cornelius Og 1665, son of Cornelius Senior 1625, son of Donal 1590, son of Conor b. 1558 - son of Fyneen, constable of MacCarthy Muskerry, Chief of the O'Crowley clan 1577, son of Teige Og, son of Teige Mor 1521.

My father William was born in 1915; his parents were Michael (born 1886) and Mary O'Leary (born 1888). My grandfather Michael was the 3rd son of a large family of eleven children.
My great grandfather William Crowley b. 1856, d 1947, lived in Shandrum Parish at Cherry Hill on the Gould estate, married Elizabeth Scannell of Fidane in 1882. His brother Daniel with his wife emigrated to New Zealand, were never heard of.

My great grandfather was to go with him but changed his mind and in 1911 William borrowed 140 Pounds from O'Flaherty who had a mill. He acquired a small farm in Ardglass with 15 acres and 6 cows. With his 7 sons he built the two floor stone farm house. In 1913 two cows died. Three sons had to immigrate to America. Ultimately, William bought a threshing machine, and rented his services for harvesting. Today my cousins are still in the farm, with over a 120 cows. Of the three brothers who went to Rochester NY, Jack had a plumbing business which has developed into a large business. Michael had a moving business. Daniel went into side activities during the prohibition, and was out the family circle.

William was the son John Crowley (born 1809, died 1899) and Johanna O'Keefe - married in 1840, had only two sons, Daniel born 1845, William born 1856, a daughter Margaret born 1852. John, my great-great grandfather was born 1809 in Brehaun, Macroom. In 1831 he was a tenant of 4 acres, working on the Gould estate of Macroom when he got involved in the tithe war. Cornelius his father, along with John's brother Daniel and Aunt Catherine were well set with 52 acres of land in Glaunanary. The Gould family provided John with a new prospect which was to move onto their estate of Cherry Hill in Shandrum Parish.

John's father Cornelius, my great great great grandfather, had a brother Jeremiah who served in the British army for 12 years and returned to Macroom in 1835. Cornelius date of birth is not recorded, but we know that he died in 1842. Their father Daniel along with his own father Cornelius Og (or junior) was alive in 1766 in Macroom. Cornelius Og was the son of Cornelius senior; both were in the MacCarthy Muskerry Estate papers as they leased over 350 acres. In 1702 the Macroom MacCarthy Muskerry estate is sold.

Cornelius Og had a brother Miles, well known since Miles went to France in 1667, had this branch of the Crowley genealogy and its coat of arms recorded both in France and Ireland. Cornelius Senior is the son of Donal son of Conor. In 1573 Conor along with his father Fyneen was in the MacCarthy Muskerry household, at the time Fyneen was the constable of MacCarthy Muskerry. He owned Drumgarrif in Kilnagross before becoming the chief of the O'Crowley clan in 1577.

Originally appeared on Crowley Clan Newsletter, March 2015

Peter CrowleyComment