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Old 13th October 2017, 01:13   #11
Bekaygee
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Re: Robert Graham - County Derry

Thank you all for your great responses to my query. I had a feeling that this was going to be a difficult query as I had been unable to find much in the way of clues myself. However the number of links and suggestions posted so far has been great and has given me a lot of information.

My only information, prior to seeking help here, has come from a couple of old newspaper articles from Victoria, Australia.

The first, from October 1880, was about the marriage of "Samuel Marks Graham, of Dollin, second son of Robert Graham, Moveins, county Londonderry, Ireland." The "Moveins" is exactly as it was spelled in the article and, hopefully understandably, I wasn't able to find any reference to Moveins anywhere in County Londonderry.

The second article I found was from July 1897, which began "A quiet, but pretty wedding took place yesterday afternoon at "Movenis", the residence of the bride's parents." This was about the wedding of Eva Graham, who was Thomas Graham's daughter. When searching with the new spelling of Movenis I was finally able to find something.

However, going from Elwyns excellent response, in 1831 and 1859 there were no Graham's living in Movenis! With the 3 sons being born in 1840, 1846 & 1855 I would have expected that there would have been a family home somewhere within that time, so I might have to start looking elsewhere for any clues.

Why don't we start asking these questions when we are much younger when someone that might remember something is still alive!

Thank you to everyone once again and I will continue to trawl through some of the links you have given to see if I can find any clues at all. Perhaps the note from Elwyn about the sons having Surnames as Middle names might be a clue I can follow up on.

Barry

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Old 13th October 2017, 18:13   #12
Elwyn
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Re: Robert Graham - County Derry

Barry,

Your information about Movenis seems pretty clear and so I did a bit more digging.

It has been standard practice to use your townland as your address in Ireland for at least a thousand years. (They were in use in Norman times). There were no street names and house numbers. The townland alone was enough to identify you and for the postman to deliver a letter. In rural areas street names and house numbers started to creep in around the 1950s but until then you just used the townland. Most emigrants gave their townland as their address on passenger lists etc. And many named their homes after their townland. So I feel you are on the right track here.

You can see all the townlands in Co. Derry on this site:

http://www.thecore.com/seanruad/

You’ll see that Movenis is quite distinctive. Sometimes you get the townland name used several times in the same county. But there’s only 1 Movenis and no other townland spelled anything like it.

I looked at the tithe applotment records. (Compiled for tax purposes. You had to have land to be in the tithes, so again it’s not a complete census). There was a Samuel Graham farming in Movenis in 1822. A family name obviously.

http://www.irishgenealogyhub.com/der...p#.WeDqmhR9eg0

So where has that farmer gone in the 1831 census? I searched adjacent townlands and found a Samuel in Caulhame, which borders Movenis. He was a Presbyterian and there were 3 males and 5 females in the household. Checking that same townland in Griffiths, in 1859, I find that the farm is now occupied by a Robert Graham. Robert Graham remains the tenant in the land records right up to the 1900s. However I think it went from father to son, and both were named Robert. So no change required. Here’s the family in 1901:

http://www.census.nationalarchives.i...lhome/1519568/

Same family in 1911:

http://www.census.nationalarchives.i...ulhame/590683/


Generally farmers don’t subdivide their farms in Ireland. They usually leave the farm to one son, often the eldest, and the other sons have to make their way in the world. What was your Robert Graham’s occupation, do you know, from his childrens marriage or death certificates? Was he a farmer?

I had a look at some probate files. I found this:

The Will of Robert Graham late of Movenis County Londonderry Farmer who died 23 August 1887 at same place was proved at Londonderry by Robert Gardiner Graham of Movenis (Garvagh) Farmer the sole Executor.

The will itself is on-line on the PRONI wills site. The farm is left to Robert. There’s no mention of a wife so she probably pre-deceased her husband. Two daughters are mentioned Fanny Jane McGowan and Elizabeth Anne Moore.

Robert Graham was 76 when he died in 1887, so born c 1811. So he could easily be the father of children born 1840-1855. You can view the original death certificate on-line on the GRONI website, using the “search registrations” option:

https://geni.nidirect.gov.uk

You will need to open an account and buy some credits. It costs £2.50 (sterling) to a view a certificate.

It won’t escape you that Robert Gardiner Graham is the farmer in Caulhame in 1901. So it looks as though the family had land in 2 townlands, Movenis and Caulhame. I checked PRONI land records for Movenis for the years 1860 – 1888 but there’s no sign of any Graham farm there. Just the one in Caulhame. I looked to see if there was a Movenis farm that had been sublet but no. So can’t explain that.

I also spotted this:

Letters of Administration of the personal estate of William John Graham late of Maghera County Londonderry Grocer deceased who died 27 March 1877 at same place were granted at Londonderry to Robert Graham of Movenis in said County Farmer the Father of said deceased.

The above William John died intestate so there’s no will and the abstract is all that survives. He was 23 when he died, so born c 1854.

So I think we have found your family. You’ll notice some of the names you are familiar with like Samuel and Robert repeated in subsequent generations. That was the Scottish and Irish naming pattern.

The picture that is emerging for me is that Robert Graham (1811 – 1887) had at least 5 sons and 2 daughters. 3 sons presumably went to Oz and other children remained in Ireland. Robert Graham’s father was probably Samuel and died between 1831 and 1859.

Looking at the land records for Caulhame, there’s still a Robert Graham farming there in 1929 which is when the Valuation Revision records stop.

I found a marriage for Elizabeth Graham to Joseph Moore on 27.3.1877. Registered in Coleraine. It was tradition to marry in the bride’s church, so it’d be worth looking at that marriage cert to see which church it was.

Here’s Joseph and Elizabeth Ann in 1901. Clearly Joseph married the girl next door.

http://www.census.nationalarchives.i...lhome/1519571/

Fanny Graham married John Governor on 29.11.1881. Both were from Movenis, so again marrying the girl next door. They married at Garvagh 2nd. Since she’s Fanny McGowan by 1887, presumably John died and she remarried, but you’d need to check that out,

At this stage, I’d be inclined to get someone to look at the Garvagh 2nd Presbyterian baptism records for your Thomas, Samuel, & James. Worth searching the graveyards too, I suspect. Farmers usually had gravestones. (I can do that research for you. If so send me a pm).


Elwyn

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Old 14th October 2017, 03:32   #13
Bekaygee
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Re: Robert Graham - County Derry

Wow!!!

Elwyn, that is fantastic work. Thank you so much for the time and energy that you have put in to look outside the given information to find an answer!

Please give me time to process everything that you have given me before I get back to you.

I am in awe!

Barry

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Old 14th October 2017, 08:12   #14
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Re: Robert Graham - County Derry

Okay, I have done a little more digging around in Australian records, and I believe I have discovered that the mother of Samuel Marks Graham was named "Fanny Jane Marks". This is from the Australian Death Index for James in 1895. It would probably follow that if the Mothers name was Fanny, then one of her daughters would also be named Fanny, as Elwyn has found. So that looks like it verifies Elwyn's findings quite nicely.

Another question that has been puzzling our family for many years, is that nearly every child of James Barclay Graham was given a middle name of "D'Erinlea". For example, a son was named Robert William D'Erinlea Graham, and a daughter Ivyetta D'Erinlea Graham (my Grandmother). There are 7 children in all with this as a middle name. Is there any significance in the name D'Erinlea?

Using a bit of poetic licence I have guessed this to mean "Of Irish Fields", with "Erin" a poetic name for Ireland and "lea" being a poetic name for a field. Would this be close, or is there some other meaning relating to anything in the County Londonderry area?

Barry

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Old 14th October 2017, 09:37   #15
Elwyn
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Re: Robert Graham - County Derry

D’Erinlea doesn’t mean anything to me, and I live fairly close to the Garvagh area. Your analysis of what it might mean seems sound. Erin’s an old fashioned word now. You wouldn’t hear it used today except in the odd old ballad. Lea is a fairly common word found in many townland names. But I’d say D’Erinlea is invented. Sounds like someone was homesick, or wanted to keep the link to Ireland alive in the family names.

The Lea-rig was often a discreet end of a field where young people used to go, to get better acquainted. Robert Burns mentions it a lot in his songs and poetry. He fathered about 6 illegitimate children, so presumably was a regular visitor to the lea-rig.

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Old 14th October 2017, 09:44   #16
Bekaygee
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Re: Robert Graham - County Derry

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elwyn View Post
D’Erinlea doesn’t mean anything to me, and I live fairly close to the Garvagh area. Your analysis of what it might mean seems sound. Erin’s an old fashioned word now. You wouldn’t hear it used today except in the odd old ballad. Lea is a fairly common word found in many townland names. But I’d say D’Erinlea is invented. Sounds like someone was homesick, or wanted to keep the link to Ireland alive in the family names.
Thanks. That was my thinking as well. Stuck in farming land in Australia, far from the lush green fields of his homeland. The name doesn't appear in either Thomas' or Samuel's children's names, so it looked like it was just something that James came up with to remind all his children where their roots were.

Thanks for the help, once again!

Barry

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Old 14th October 2017, 12:01   #17
Elwyn
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Re: Robert Graham - County Derry

Barry,

I mentioned your interest in the Graham family to a friend who lives in Garvagh. He recalls 2 unmarried Graham brothers who lived in Caulhame some years back. Both are dead now. There may be some married female members of the family about but that would require a bit of digging.

Elwyn

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