Pádraig 'ac Conaglaigh (c1860–1946) of Baile 'n Chnoic, Baile Láir, Fanad, Co Donegal
and
Nóra Nic Conaglaigh (c1862–1950) of Glaise, Ballybrockey, Fanad

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Although it is not stated in the Doegen documentation, these speakers were brother and sister. According to the information recorded on the Doegen speaker questionnaires for Pádraig and Nóra in September 1931, Pádraig 'ac Conaglaigh was born in Baile 'n Chnuic and was aged 72 at the time of recording, while Nóra Nic Conagaigh, also born in Baile an Chnuic, was aged 70. Pádraig was a farmer, and Nóra a farmer's wife. Their father was a farmer from Baile na Brocaighe, Baile Láir, and their mother came from An Ghlaiseach, Baile Láir. In response to questions, Pádraig stated that he spent all his life in Baile 'n Chnuic, except for 6 months in Scotland in his 19th year. Nóra spent at least her first 20 years in Baile 'n Chnuic, but subsequently spent "7 or 10 years" in America, and lived in An Ghlaiseach since then. Both speakers gave Irish as their mother language and both could also speak English. Both could read and write English. Pádraig attended different primary schools in Fánaid, while Nóra attended primary school at "Bally an ear" (An Baile Úr?) Pádraig could play the tin whistle. Comments on their articulation were that Pádraig was "indistinct" and "had very few teeth", while Nóra had a "clear voice" but her articulation was "spoilt by rapid speaking".

The marriage records of our speakers reveal that their father's name was Francis McConigly. Census data shows their mother was Catherine. The church marriage record of Francis McConigly and Catherine Clinton bears the date 1852/02/15. Baptisms of children of this couple include Mary (1852/12/22), Anna (1854/10/01), Bridget (1857/04/10), Hugh (1859/01/09) and Catherine (1860/02/14); however no reference to either speaker has been discovered in these church records, sections of which are illegible, unless this Anna is to be identified with our speaker Hannah, but this is unlikely given that Hannah had a son born in 1909.

Mary McConaghly (1852–1896) would marry Michael McAteer of Baile na Loiste in 1877, and their son, Fr John McAteer (1877–1945), would become in 1914 director of the Crann Eithne movement to promote the transmission of Gaelic in the home, as well as being a Gaelic writer under the pen-name "B N Loiste", whose publications in the 1930s include two short plays. Fr John was thus a nephew of our two speakers.

On 20/02/1889 at Fanavolty, Patrick McConigly married Mary Doherty, daughter of Daniel Doherty, Baile an Chnuic, with Mary McAteer and Laurence Doherty as witnesses. The family were found at Baile an Chnuic/Baile na Brocaighe in the 1901 census: Patrick 39, Mary 33, and children Frank 10, Daniel 9, Catherine 7, Patrick 5, Mary Anne 2. Head of the household was Patrick's mother Catherine, a widow of 75. Also living there were Patrick's widowed sister, Bridget Sweeney, 41, and her son Frank J 9, and a servant, Patrick Duffy 16. All spoke Irish and English, except the head of household, who spoke Irish only. In 1911, Patrick 55, was head of household, with Mary 49, and children Francis 21, Dan 19, Mary Anne 13, Bridget 11, Edward 9, John 5 and Cecelia 1. All were bilingual except Francis (no Irish) and Cecelia. The marriage had lasted 22 years, and all 9 of the children were living.

A song “Éist le mo sgéal, a dhuine chóir” in the Schools' Collection was obtained from Pádraig Mac Conaglaoich, Baile an Chnuic, Baile Láir.

Patrick McConigley died at Baile an Chnuic on 28/05/1946, a widower aged 88; the death was registered by his son Patrick, also of Baile an Chnuic.

The McConigley grave at Fanavolty shows:
      In
      Loving memory Of
      Patrick McConigley, Ballinacrick
      Died 16th May 1946 aged 86 years
      His wife Mary
      Died 10th March 1940 aged 72
      His son Francis
      Died 16th Oct 1913 aged 23
      His son John
      Died 13th Nov 1944 aged 39
      His son Patrick
      Died 8th June 1980 aged 84



Reilig Fhán a' Bhualtaigh
(Photograph © Irish Graveyard Surveyors)




Reilig Fletcherstown, Co na Midhe

On 22/02/1906 at Massmount, Hannah McConigly married James Clinton (widower), son of Manus Clinton, deceased, of Baile na Brocaighe, with William McAteer and Mary Carr as witnesses. A daughter, Catherine Anne, was born on 28/06/1908 but died in 1910; a son, John Patrick, was born on 25/07/1909. In the 1911 census, the family in Baile an Chnuic/Baile na Brocaighe consisted of James 55, Hannah 48, and John Patrick 2, along with Mary 12, the daughter of James by a previous marriage, and a farm servant Daniel Coll 17. All spoke Irish and English, except John Patrick, who had Irish only. The marriage had lasted 5 years, and 1 of 2 children was living.

Hannah Clinton moved, with her son John, to Gibbstown in Co Meath around 1939, and died there at Clongill on 1950/11/08. She is buried at Fletcherstown. No civil record of her death has been found.

The Fletcherstown grave reads:
      In Memory Of
      Hannah Clinton
      Clongill & Fanad, Co Donegal
      Died 1950
      And Her Son John
      Died 11-9-1972
      Rest In Peace

Recent references to Pádraig 'ac Conaglaigh include:
      Róise Ní Bhaoill, Ulster Gaelic Voices, 2010, pp 74–5, 106–13.
and to Nóra Nic Conaglaigh:
      Róise Ní Bhaoill, Ulster Gaelic Voices, 2010, pp 76–7, 124–9.

Thanks to John McConigly, Baile 'n Chnuic, and Manus McElwaine, Baile Láir, for genealogical information, and to Cecily Gibbons for information about the Gibbstown connection.

Pádraig 'ac Conaglaigh's recordings Nóra Nic Conaglaigh's recordings Ulster Doegen index


Speculative family tree:


                 Francis McConigly-----------Catherine Clinton
                 1815?—1899            |     c1826–
                 (Frainc Ruadh)        | m 1852
                                       |
              ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              |           |                      |      |       |              |                                                                                                                           |
              |           |                      |      |       |              |                 Daniel Doherty                                                                   Manus Clinton            |
              |           |                      |      |       |              |                          |                                                                              |                 |
McAteer-----Mary        Anna    Sweeney-----Bridget   Hugh   Catherine     PATRICK---------------Mary Doherty                                          Cecilia/Giley McGinley–----James Clinton---------HANNAH
         |  1852–1896   1854–            |  1857–     1859–  1860–         c1860–1946      |     c1867–1940                                                         1870–1904  |  c1856–c1935      |    c1862–1950
         |                               |                                                 |                                                                                   |                   |
         | m 1877                        |                                                 | m 1889                                                                            | m1 1898           | m2 1906
         |                               |             ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------            |                ----------------
         |                               |             |         |            |                  |           |          |                  |            |         |            |                |              |
       John                           Frank J         Frank    Daniel      Catherine          Patrick    Mary Anne   Bridget            Edward        John      Cecelia      Mary        Catherine Ann    John Patrick
       1877–1945                      c1892–          1890–    1892–       1894–              1896–      1899–       1902–              1903–         1906–     1910–        1900–1985   1908–1910        1909–1972
                                      b America        1913                                    1980                                      2008          1944
                                                               m           m 1941             unmarried  m           m                  m 1941        m         unmarried    m 1926
                                                                           John C Browne                 Dan Martin  Macdonald Duffy    Mary Sweeney                         Thomas McElwaine
                                                                                                                                         –2003                                c1888–1980
                                                               Birmingham  Castleboy, Dublin  Baile 'n Chnuic                           Magherawarden Singapore              Baile Láir
                                                               no family   no family                                                    family of 10  family of 3


Ciarán Ó Duibhín
2019/09/14
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