Bridget Tobin Ryan (1818-1873) of Co. Kilkenny, Ireland: Records Possibly Pointing to Her Family Members

As another posting states, I’ve concluded for a number of reasons that seem compelling to me that Bridget Tobin’s family roots likely lie in Kilmacow parish — and perhaps in the part of that parish from which Mullinavat parish was formed in 1842. If Bridget, Catherine, Daniel, and Edmond were siblings — they’d seem all to have been born between 1810-1825 — then the likeliest place to look for their parents should be in records of Mullinavat and surrounding areas, it seems to me.

With Kilmacow parish records beginning only in 1858 — but see my previous discussion of the complexity of that matter — it’s a challenge to find parents for this list of Tobins who all seem to have been living in the Buckstown-Mullinavat area in the 1830s at the time of their marriages. The Kilmacow records show Tobins concentrated in Granny/Grannagh about 8 miles south of Mullinavat. Neither the Kilmacow nor the Mullinavat Catholic parish records show many Tobins other than the names I’ve cited living in the vicinity of Mullinavat in the time frame in which the Tobins named above would have been born.

In terms of proximity to Mullinavat, the likeliest candidate I can find in the Tithe Applotment Books to be a possible father of Bridget, Catherine, Daniel, and Edmond Tobin — and, again, I’m making the assumption that these are possibly siblings, and have not proven this as fact — is an Edmond Tobin with land in Deerpark in Rossinan civil parish in 1833 (see the image at the head of this posting). The name is given as Edd; the 1831 list of tithe defaulters in Deerpark, which includes Edmond Tobin, shows that the name is Edmond and not Edward. Deerpark is contiguous to both Mullinavat and its “suburb” Buckstown (i.e., Inchacarran townland), where Valentine Ryan and Bridget Tobin lived. Mullinavat joins Deerpark on the north and Inchacarran townland on the west. 

As I’ve just noted, Edmond Tobin of Deerpark in Rossinan civil parish appears in an 1831 list of those who defaulted on paying tithes in this townland. As the abstract of this record and the discussion of it at the FindMyPast site notes, in 1830-1831, after all agricultural households in Ireland were forced to pay tithes to support the Church of ireland, many landholders refused to pay the tithe and their names were gathered on a list of defaulters called the 1831 Tithe Defaulters. These records are gathered in the collection in the National Archives of Ireland entitled “Official Papers Miscellaneous Assorted (OPMA).

Tithe Applotment listing for Thomas Tobin, Granny Ferry, Kilmacow civil parish, County Kilkenny, 1828

Edmond is the sole Tobin I find living very close to Mullinavat and Buckstown in the Tithe Applotment Books of the late 1820s and early 1830s. The Tithe Applotment Books also show a Thomas Tobin renting land at Granny Ferry in Kilmacow civil parish, with George Roach/Roche as the landowner. As with Edmond Tobin at Deerpark, Thomas Tobin appears in the Tithe Defaulters list of 1831, refusing to pay his tithe in Granagh Ferry in Kilmacow parish.

According to Kathleen Laffan in her book The History of Kilmacow — A South Kilkenny Parish, James Roche “the swimmer” was granted all the ferry rights in Ireland by King William when he swam up the Foyle to Derry to give the citizens news that relief was at hand during the siege of Derry in 1689.[1] Roche then exchanged these rights for the right to own sixteen specific ferries, including Grannagh Ferry. After his death in 1725, the ferry rights went eventually to Cornelius Grogan — but given the fact that Thomas Tobin was living at Granny Ferry in 1828 and renting from George Roche (and later from Stephen Roche when Griffith’s Valuation was made, if the Thomas Tobin living at Granny on this document is the same man), it seems to me some members of the Roche family continued their interest in this ferry.

Laffan says that Grannagh or Granny Ferry was a busy place into the late 1700s and on through the 19th century, since all the traffic en route to Waterford had to cross the river either there or at Ferrybank. She says that there were a number of houses built close to the river at Grannagh Ferry that were inhabited up to 1900, but after that, the settlement disappeared.

Richard Griffith, General Valuation of Ireland: County of Kilkenny, Barony of Knocktopher, Parish of Kilmacow (Dublin, 1850), p. 31
Richard Griffith, General Valuation of Ireland: County of Kilkenny, Barony of Knocktopher, Parish of Kilbeacon (Dublin, 1850), p. 33

If Thomas Tobin lived to the time in which Griffith’s Valuation was taken, then he would seem to be the man of that name renting from Stephen Roche and living at Granny in Kilmacow parish in 1849. Thomas is renting a house, office, and 26 acres of land, plus 28 perches. Griffith’s also shows a Patrick Tobin renting land in Mullinavat in 1833 from Mrs. Mary Ann Tighe, Mrs. Harriet Cuffe, and St George Caulfield Esq. — the landlords from whom, we saw in a previous posting, Thomas and Edmond Ryan and Patrick and John Costello were renting property in Scart townland of Rossinan civil parish when Griffith’s Valuation was taken there in 1833. Griffith’s also shows a Patrick Tobin who is, I suspect, the man also renting land in Mullinavat, with a house and garden rented from Thomas McDonald Jr. in Killandrew townland of Rossinan civil parish. Killandrew is just east of Mullinavat. This is likely the Patrick Tobin who married Judy Murphy on 23 February 1833 at Glendonnell/Glendaniel, with witnesses William Cashin and Catherine Murphy, according to the Ossory diocese transcript of parish records.

Death of Thomas Tobin (1858) in index to death records, Catholic parish of Kilmacow, County Kilkenny, Ireland from digitized copy of microfilmed Kilmacow records in National Library of Ireland (film 05024 / 02)
Death of Margaret Walsh Tobin, 26 October 1866, Granny, Kilmacow Catholic parish, County Kilkenny, Ireland, and of Thomas Tobin, 3 October 1866, also Granny (1858) in death records, Catholic parish of Kilmacow, County Kilkenny, Ireland from digitized copy of microfilmed Kilmacow records in National Library of Ireland (film 05024 / 02)

The index to the parish death register for Kilmacow Catholic parish states that a Thomas Tobin died at Granny in Kilmacow parish in 1858, and gives page 3 as the page on which this record is found. But the microfilmed copy of the parish death register starts with page 4. The Kilmacow parish death register shows a Margaret Walsh Tobin dying on 26 October 1866 at Granny, aged 86 (therefore born in 1780). Margaret is, it seems to me, likely the widow of the Thomas Tobin who died at Granny in 1858. The death register suggests that Thomas and Margaret had a son Thomas who died 3 October 1866 at his house in Granny, Kilmacow parish, aged 63. Kilmacow parish records suggest that the wife of this Thomas Tobin was a Bridget.

Whether this Tobin family in Granny/Grannagh connects in any way with the Edmond Tobin found in the Tithe Applotment Books in 1833 in Deerpark townland of Rossinan civil parish, I don’t have enough information to say. Nor can I say how the Patrick Tobin found renting property in both Mullinavat and Killandrew townland of Rossinan civil parish in 1833 on Griffith’s Valuation is connected to Edmond Tobin or to the Tobins I find in the 1830s in Mullinavat parish records. What I can say is that Tobins are few and far between in the Mullinavat parish records, and that makes it all the more interesting that an Edmond Tobin was living close to Mullinavat in 1833, in the decade in which four Tobins who were apparently younger than Edmond all married in the Mullinavat parish (well, to be precise, the Edmond Tobin who married Mary Comerford appears to have lived in that parish, but the couple married in Templeorum parish). Is the Edmond Tobin of Deepark the father of these Tobins marrying in Mullinavat in the 1830s?

There are also the John and Thomas Tobin of Harristown named on a tombstone in the cemetery of Muckalee Catholic parish near Mullinavat. I copied the inscription on a trip to the cemetery on 24 July 2001. It reads,

Erected by Thos. Tobin of Harristown in memory of his Father John Tobin who Dept. this life ye 14th of Febr. 1804 Aged 70. Also of his Children who died young.

Death of John Tobin, 16 February 1805, Harristown, Catholic parish of Templeorum, County Kilkenny, Ireland, from digitized copy of microfilmed Templeorum parish records in National Library of Ireland,

The index to death records of Templeorum Catholic parish gives John Tobin’s date of death as 16 February 1805. The actual death record appears not to be extant, or, at least, it has not been microfilmed by the National Library of Ireland.

According to Mary O’Shea, the surname Tobin has “disappeared down the decades” from Templeorum Catholic parish (see her Parish of Templeorum: 1999-2000 [Piltown: Templeorum Parish, 2000), p. 9). The Tobin name was at one time found not infrequently in Templeorum parish records, sometimes in connection with Ryan families in those records, and in some cases, also in connection to Logriach/Loughreagh in Belline and Rogerstown parish, where John Ryan and Margaret Oates lived, or in Tybroughney/Tibberaghney, where Margaret Oates Ryan’s roots lie. Here are some Tobin records I’ve extracted from the Templeorum register:

The Templeorum death register shows Else Tobin of Logriach dying on 9 December 1812 and Thomas Tobin of Logriach dying on 23 June 1813. I suspect these may be the These may be the Thomas and Else Tobin who were godparents for the baptism of Mary, daughter of Andrew Ryan and Mary Tobin of Harristown, when she was baptized in Templeorum parish on 16 December 1808.

The Templeorum register shows John, son of John Brazil and Mary Connally of Piltown, baptized on 29 June 1808, with Simon Oates and Nelly Tobin as godparents.

On 6 April 1812, Robert, son of John Brazil and Mary Connally, was baptized in Templeorum parish, with Simon Tobin and Bridget Oates as godparents. The Brazil family lived at Logriach.

On 7 February 1814, James, son of Nicholas Dalton and Ann Tobin of Piltown, was baptized in Templeorum parish, with Michael Fitzpatrick and Cathy Oates as godparents.

James Tobin, son of Thomas Tobin and Biddy Walsh, was baptized in Templeorum parish 28 February 1814, with sponsors William Cuddihy and Margaret Butler. The register says that this Tobin family lived at Tybroughney.

On 6 September 1814, Mary, daughter of Patrick Coady and Else Tobin, was baptized, the family living at Harristown. John Gorman and Mary Grace were godparents.

On 13 September 1814, Catherine, daughter of Pat Walsh and Mary Thompson of Piltown was baptized in Templeorum parish, with Michael Dalton and Catherine Tobin as godparents. Michael Dalton is, I think, likely the man of that name baptized on 1 December 1805 in Templeorum parish, son of John Dalton and Mary Butler, who lived in Templeorum, according to the baptismal record in the parish register. He appears on the Tithe Applotment list in 1828 in Banaher, Logriach, and Piltown renting from the Earl of Bessborough, and listed on the same page as John Ryan, who is, I believe, father of Valentine Ryan, as well as Simon tobin and Philip Oates.

On 24 April 1815, William, son of Thomas Tobin and Catty Walsh, was baptized in Templeorum parish, with Philip Roche and Betty Butler as godparents. The family lived at a place whose name I cannot quite make out, but which may be a variant spelling of Banagher — i.e., at Piltown.

On 22 September 1816, Margaret, daughter of John Ryan and Catherine Tobin, was baptized in Templeorum parish. James Lewis and Mary Mageat (?) were godparents. The Ryan family lived at Piltown.

On 7 February 1837, William Tobin married Bridget Walsh in Templeorum parish. Patt Brophy and Margaret Shea were witnesses. The marriage took place in Mullinbeg.

As a previous posting notes, a Simon Tobin who is likely the man of that name who was a godfather of Robert Brazil at his April 1812 baptism (see above) appears on the Tithe Applotment lists in Belline and Rogerstown, Fiddown civil parish in 1828 on the same page as Philip Oats and a John Ryan I suspect is the father of Valentine Ryan. Simon Tobin is found again in Belline and Rogerstown on Griffith’s Valuation in 1849 renting a house, offices, and land from the Earl of Bessborough, again on the same page on which a John Ryan who is, I think, probably the father of Valentine Ryan.

A William Tobin is enumerated on Griffith’s Valuation in 1849 in Tibberaghny, renting a house and garden from Joseph Rivers, a member of the Briscoe family kinship network. He is perhaps the Wiliam Tobin who was baptized in April 1815 in Templeorum (see above).

None of these records proves either that the Tobin contemporaries of Bridget Tobin marrying or living in the Mullinavat area are her siblings, or that the other, older, Tobins named in these records, who were living in the vicinity of Mullinavat and Piltown in the early 1800s are connected to those younger Tobins. They’re my best attempt, though, to gather records that might point the way to identifying Bridget Tobin’s family members — in the absence of Catholic parish records in Kilmacow in the crucial period of the early 1800s.


[1] Kathleen Laffan, The History of Kilmacow — A South Kilkenny Parish, 2nd edition (Waterford: GK Print, 2005), p. 267.

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