Saturday, September 13, 2014

Accidental breakthrough on Roggie and Pitchie

Four years ago I wrote about my (now 91 year old) aunt remembering playing with two children at her grandfather's home in Cullomane East. They were her size, and they were nicknamed "Roggie" and "Pitchie." She only remembered that "Roggie" had bright red curly hair but really couldn't remember further details. They were associated with a woman named Dinah, whom I deduced was their mother. From research I subsequently learned that "Dinah" must have been Dinah Collins Hallahan, who was my grandmother's first cousin. Both Dinah's father and her husband worked for the railroad. By pure accidental luck, I have come one major step closer to discovering what happened to Dinah, and who Roggie and Pitchie were.

Some time ago the Irish government put a civil registration index online at The government took it down when it decided that publication of the records was violating privacy laws because of the availability of more recent records containing data that included mothers' maiden names. At the time I am writing this, it is still down.

Before the site came down, I looked up Dinah Hallahan and immediately found a death entry in 1980. The registration district was Cork. Figuring that the family lived in Cork City, I tried searching for Hallahan children whose mother's surname was Collins. I immediately found two children. I sent for one of those records.

The records I subsequently sent for shows that Dinah was 87 years old when she died, and lived on Glencoo Lawn off of Boreenmanna Road in Cork City. She died at a medical institution called St. Mary's.

Daughter Margaret was born in March 1920 at 29 South Terrace. The record shows the residence of the father, Daniel, at 25 High Street, which is just a few blocks away.

The second child, son Daniel, was born in 1921 according to the Irish government online source. However, I cannot find Daniel in the online civil registration at Family Search, indicating that not all information was given to the FHL at the time they filmed civil registration. Daniel's birth record will be in my next batch of GRO requests to Ireland.

Now, if I could only trace these children, particularly Margaret ("Pitchie").  If she had daughters, and they had daughters, conceivably it would be possible for one of these direct line female descendants to do a DNA test which would establish the mitochondrial signature of my 3g-grandmother, Catherine Hurley, married to Denis Mahony.