Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Mystery photo: Miss Nelligan, a handsome woman

I have a handful of mystery photos which I will feature on this blog. This one has a surname on the back: Nelligan. If anyone is related to the person in the photo, I would love to return it. The Thomas Nelligan and Maurice Nelligan families were either somehow related to or merely neighbors and friends of the Maurice Ahern (alternate spelling Ahearn) family in Cambridge, MA.

Many of the Nelligans appear on the census listings living on and around Dublin St. which later became Sherman St. Thomas Nelligan was married to Hanorah “Hannah” and their children were: Mary Ann b. circa 1866, Margaret b. circa 1868 (married name was Hayes), Hanora b. circa 1869, David b. circa 1873, Thomas b. circa 1875, and John P. Nelligan b. circa 1878 who became a doctor and appears with his family on the 1920 census on Mass Ave in Cambridge.


U5a1a – my haplogroup

Recently, I had my maternal mitochondrial DNA (also known as mtDNA) tested through the web site I had been interested in genetics and the connection to genealogy, and in learning about the earliest generations and what their lives were like. I was somewhat surprised to be categorized in the U5a1a supgroup of U5, because it seems like only a small population of that subgroup were “Irish”, but there is a percentage nonetheless and it is interesting to know about these roots. The haplogroup is strongly linked to Finland and later *cough cough* Scotland and England, basically the extreme Northern sections of Europe which early people migrated to as the ice retreated after the ice age. There is even a U5a connection to Cheddar Man in England, who besides the great name was a pretty interesting guy.

A collage of photos taken of all the M.E.’s around age 17.

Known maternal line:
1) Ellen Haley (Alternate spelling Healy) b. about 1830 + m. Maurice Ahern (Alternate spellings Ahearn and Hearn)
2) Mary Elizabeth “Lizzie” Ahern b.1862 + m. John B. Brady
3) Mary Elizabeth Brady b.1892 + m. Flowrence H. Barrett
4) Mary Elizabeth Barrett b.1916 + m. Raymond M. Needham
5) My mother (living)
6) me (living, obviously)
The Ahern, Haley, Brady and Barrett families all emigrated to Massachusetts USA from Ireland in the mid 19th Century. They were all quiet Irish. For the most part. 🙂 My Dad is supposedly 100% Irish, and eventually I may have to get him a DNA test to prove it.


This blog will be devoted to discussing the research of several lines of my family who came from Ireland and settled in the United States. Forgive me the cheesy blog name, I just couldn’t resist. All the generic “Irishgenealogy” names were taken on wordpress. I hope to someday travel to Ireland to see some of the places that my ancestors originated from. Unfortunately many records in Ireland have been lost, but some records still exist and are waiting to be found. There are also many useful U.S. Records for those that did emigrate from Ireland to the United States.

My maiden name is Nolan, and I grew up in a suburb of Boston, Massachusetts. I have 2 sons, and this blog will also be for them to learn a little more about their ancestors.

I am going to break down things by surname. (Some spellings may vary, and I will note this when applicable).

Surnames in my paternal line: Nolan, Dennehy, Hayes, Sheahan, McDonnell, O’Leary

Surnames in my maternal line: Barrett, Brady, Ahern, Haley