If I had to make a wild guess, I think Ellen's father and Granddad's mom could have been siblings. Margaret McCarthy Collins was born around 1862, which so closely matches Leila McCarthy Mayberry's research.
Aunt Peg said something over the phone about Ellen McCarthy having a sister Margaret, who in turn was the mother of some distant cousin Jack McCarthy. Well if that is true then obviously this Margaret McCarthy could not have been Granddad's mother.
So why did I title this post "What not to do?" Because, when I placed a research request with the GRO, I was still assuming that Greatgrandmother Margaret McCarthy and Ellen McCarthy were sisters, having a mother named Mary (which I have off of census records). So I asked GRO to look for an Ellen McCarthy born between 1870 and 1874 whose father is Cornelius and whose mother is Mary. That was too restrictive, and they came up empty handed.
When I placed the order, I should have paid slightly more money and had GRO send me the images of the Ellen McCarthy births they looked at. I did not, so now I am empty handed and have to revisit all this territory.
I therefore placed the following order for films from LDS:
Ellen McCarthy, Skibbereen, births 101194 1869 v15 p588,597 101199 1869 v20 p578 101204 1870 v5 P725 101209 1870 v10 P742,749,761 101219 1870 v20 p621 255816 1871 v5 p751,772 255824 1871 v10 p762 255831 1871 v15 p575 255838 1871 v20 p603,605 255847 1872 v5 p751,763 255855 1872 v10 p727 255860 1872 v15 p568 255865 1872 v20 p606,621 255866 1872 v20 255873 1873 v5 p699,702 255898 1874 v5 p662 255906 1874 v10 p712,728 255913 1874 v15 p581 255919 1874 v20 p551
This only covers up through part of 1869. There are more Ellen McCarthy births in Skibbereen in 1869 and up through 1868. If If I have to, I'll eventually order those leftovers, but I'll eliminate these first.
Aunt Peg said something about Ellen and her sisters being "close in age", so on the off chance that father Cornelius got married not long before Ellen was born, I want to look at the following marriage records:
Cornelius McCarthy, Skibbereen, marriages 101474 1865 v5 p825,826 No Skibb marriages 1866,1867 101525 1868 v5 p749 101542 1869 v5 p687 101546 1869 v10 p348 101559 1870 v5 p797 1871 no marriages. 1872 no Skibb marriages 1873 - order from GRO
Marriage films only go through 1870, so I will order the 1873 Skibbereen marriage record from GRO.
To strengthen Grandmom's family tree, I went ahead and ordered film for the registry entry of the birth of her youngest paternal uncle, James Collins (Dec-1866):
James Collins, births 101139 1866 v20 p571,573
There is some confusion out on the Internet about this James Collins. Apparently in the International Genealogical Index (IGI) there is a James Collins born around late 1866 to a Denis Collins and Margaret Mahoney in the Drimoleague area. I suspect that "Denis" is really "Daniel" and "Margaret" is really "Mary". The birth record will help clarify this. I already have brother Daniel's record from 1865 and it shows father Daniel and mother Mary.
How am I doing on the Hurley end? I've been asking questions about Grandmom's cousin Annie Sullivan. I turns out her married name was Donovan, and she died around August 2008, not 2007. Aunt Peg was in Ireland that summer and went to her funeral. I checked a website of obituaries called RIP and there is an Annie O'Sullivan O'Donovan from Drinagh listed. That's her.
Now I need to find out who her parents were, specifically her mother. If I know the name of her mother, I will know the name of one of Ellen Hurley's sisters. Arggh!
So the next thing I need to do is order birth records from GRO. I have the following two in mind:
Name: Anne Sullivan Registration district: Skibbereen Record type: BIRTHS Registration date - quarter and year: Jul - Sep 1922 Film number: 101229 Volume: 5 Page: 359 Name: Annie Sullivan Registration district: Bantry Record type: BIRTHS Registration date - quarter and year: Oct - Dec 1923 Film number: 101229 Volume: 5 Page: 21
There is an interesting census record in Coolnagarrane in the 1911 census. It is interesting not only because it is filled out in Irish, even though the occupants of the household spoke "Bearla" (English). But the household name is O'Sullivan, spelled the more traditional way. There was a famous Irish politician named Gearóid O'Sullivan, and he came from Coolnagarrane. He would have been 20 in 1911, and there is definitely a "gap" in the children between the ages of 16 and 22 in this census record. Could Gearóid O'Sullivan have come out of this household?
Aunt Peg said something about Annie being from Coolnagarrane. So could Annie Sullivan have been a daughter of one of these sons, being a niece of Gearóid O'Sullivan?
The nice thing about the film order above, is that the date range 1869-1874 coincides with many of the Ellen Hurley's on my list, so I'll be able to knock off a bunch of Ellen Hurley lookups at the same time:
Ellen Hurley, births 101219, 1870, v20, p614, Skibbereen 255824, 1871, v10, p736, Skibbereen 255831, 1871, v15, p567, Skibbereen 255838, 1871, v20, p253, Dunmanway 255855, 1872, v10, p28, Bantry 255860, 1872, v15, p225, Dunmanway 255873, 1873, v5, p280, Dunmanway 255898, 1874, v5, p265, Dunmanway 255913, 1874, v15, p234, Dunmanway 255913, 1874, v15, p579, Skibbereen