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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Flanagan – Flax Growers of Ireland, 1796 – County Louth

I recently went looking for information online about Flanagan’s in County Louth. They were definitely growing flax according to their own ledger from the time. With the flax, they made linen. I was looking over the list that follows wondering how many of these Flanagan’s are descendants of James, Patrick, and Peter from circa 1700 County Louth in the Termonfeckin area.

Flanagan James Stabannan Louth
Flanagan John Rathdrumin Louth
Flanagan John Tullyallen Louth
Flanagan Joseph Mosstown Louth
Flanagan Michael Mosstown Louth
Flanagan Patrick Mosstown Louth
Flanagan Thomas Stabannan Louth
Flannagan John Termonfeckin Louth
Flannagan Matthew Collon Louth
Flannagan Nicholas Termonfeckin Louth
Flannagan Patrick Collon Louth
Flannagan Patrick Drumshallon Louth
Flannagan Peter Termonfeckin Louth

I suppose I’d have to go through a process of elimination to find my Flanagan. Let’s consider that the Flanagan’s with the two “n”s is probably a misspelling on some counts. Also, let’s assume that those Termonfeckin Flanagan’s must be my relatives. I can eliminate my original Patrick Flanagan because he died in 1779. I can eliminate my John Flanagan because he was not born until 1805. There are two generations in between there.

John’s father, Patrick Flanagan b. 1780, would have been only 16 years old in 1796. He probably would not have been the person running the farm for his family at that time, right? Also, he was not the oldest in the family. His oldest brother, John Flanagan, was born in 1770. The next male in the line was Michael Flanagan who was born in 1772. Their father was Richard Flanagan who was born in 1733. Richard probably would have been quite elderly for the time at age 63 so maybe he was not farming at the time. That leaves me with Michael and John.

I see John Flanagan farming flax in Termonfeckin in 1796. I also see a Peter doing the same in Termonfeckin. I couldn’t find a Peter for this generation on my tree. Now, I’m just a little confused. Then, I remember that the Flanagan’s also had leased land down the road in Balfeddock. I’m not sure when though.

When I map the above locations, I find that Mosstown is further inland away from Termonfeckin. Stabannan is quite a ways north of Mosstown. Rathdrumin is a short trek north of Termonfeckin. Collon is directly due west of Termonfeckin but still a bit of a trek. Drumshallon is slightly northwest of Termonfeckin. It is possible that the John in Rathdrumin is the same John farming flax in Termonfeckin. Those locations are only 2 miles from each other. Also, Drumshallon is about 2 miles from Termonfeckin. How far were they willing to travel to farm their fields? In the grand scheme of things, this whole area is about 5 square miles. Was that a lot of distance to cover for flax growers in 1796?

It is interesting what you can find online and what questions it generates.

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