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Family Names Of Holyrood


Austin is common in the English midlands and the south of England. It is a common diminutive medieval form of the name Augustine. It is now found mostly in Kent and Dorsetshire. The first Holyrood Austin mentioned in Church records is Thomas Austin, who on Jan. 27, 1870 married Mary Nicol from Salmon Cove (Avondale).


The Barron family can trace back to Lawrence and Margaret Barron who settled in Holyrood in the mid 1800's and had five sons: John, Stephen, Michael, Peter and Lawrence. John, Stephen and Lawrence emigrated to the U.S. Michael and Peter both married and settled in Holyrood.


The Bennett family were of English descent. In the 1600's they moved to Scotland, and still later they crossed the sea to Ireland. In the 1700's some of the Bennetts came to Newfoundland. There is proof that in 1806 John Bennett, great-grandfather of the present generation of Bennetts, owned fishing property, both in Holyrood and in Harbour Main. At the same time he owned a six hundred trap-skiff and a punt. This deed of ownership is registered in the Surrogate Court in Harbour Grace. James Bennett, son of John, moved to the south side of Holyrood and gave the name "Bennett's Road" to the area on which he lived and "Bennett's River" to the river that flowed past his home.


The Besso descendents came from Franc in the late 1700's. The early property registers show that in 1792 one F. Besso "cut and cleared land agreeable to Act Wm. III Chap25 Sec7". The name also had an early spelling Beseau which changed to Besso and Beeso over the years. A distant branch of the family that settled on the Port aux Port peninsula still spell their names Beseau. In 1864 there was listed in the Newfoundland Directory Edward Sr., and Jr., Francis and Patrick and Patrick Sr., and Jr., Beesu. In 1871, they were listed as Besso and by 1894 they were once again listed as Beson. Names at that time included Patrick, William, Michael, Francis, John, Edward, Nicholas and Garrett. Bessos settled property on the north sided near the church. At least one family moved to the Salmonier Line and settled there.


The 1864 directory lists John Boldin as a farmer and James and Michael Bodin as fisherman. Today there are two families of Bolands, believed to be distantly related, living in Holyrood.


The first Bropheys to settle in Holyrood were Michael and James, who came from Ireland in the early 1800's. They settled on the south shore road, cleared large blocks of land, built their homes and occupied themselves with fishing and farming. This land is still held by the Brophy descendants. The foundations of the old homesteads can still be located on the Brophy estate by the sea. The early directories list John, Michael, Thomas, James and Richard Brophy as fisherman. In a later generation it appears that Michael, John, Nicholas and Martin were brothers. Of these Nicholas and Martin moved to Sydney, N.S.


The name butler originates from the occupation of Theobald Walter (Butler), who was a domestic servant employed by King John of England. A domestic servant, known as a Butler, in the employ of a Royal Household, was an official of high rank. His duties varied in the different courts in which the office appears. In England, the butler was responsible for the management of the entire household, which included in importation of the wine for the Royal Table. The butlership of Ireland, Princerna Hiberniae was given in 1185 to Theobald Walter as a reward for services to the crown. Theobald Walter added the name Butler to his own. Butler then became the surname of his descendants. Maurice Butler was the first to arrive in Holyrood from Clonmel, Ireland around the mid 1800's. Maurice arranged for his nephew Thomas to come over, who in turn arranged for his father Edward, his brothers James and Edward and his sister Catherine to join them. Edward Sr., was reputed to have been an Irish Chieftain, in serious trouble with the British during one of the many uprisings of that time. His wife had been assassinated by some British soldiers. Their family had Catherine secluded temporarily in a convent in case of further attack. Edward Sr., had a price on his head of 500 pounds.


The ancestor of the Holyrood Byrnes was John, who arrived from Thomastown, Kilkenny, Ireland around 1814 or 1815. A brother, Peter, either came with him or arrived some time after. Peter later went to the United States, but the name Peter has been handed on as a Christian name among the Holyrood Byrnes since then.


The Carrolls dates back to 1834 when the first James Carroll, landing in Holyrood from Ireland, settled on the Shore Road, Holyrood South. James was married twice. The Carroll family had the first public industry in Holyrood in 1932. It was the Carroll Cod Storage Company Limited.


Cheesmans moved to Holyrood in the early 1950's and settled in Morth Arm. Arthur and Monica had 6 children: Barbara, Patrica, Art Jr., Richard, Angela and Thomas.


The Corbetts at Duffs originated from Chapel's Cove with the operation of the ferry service between Duffs and Chapel's Cove. The 1864 directory lists Patrick Corbett as a fisherman.


It has been suggested that the name Crawley is identified with Country Cork, Ireland. The first occurrence of the name in Holyrood is contained in the 1864-65 Newfoundland Directory, where one John Crawley of the south side is named as a land surveyor and hotelkeeper while John Crawley Jr. is listed as a fisherman. John Crawley fished on the Labrador Coast until the railway went through in the 1880's. He then worked for the railway.

Crawley - Salmonier Line:

This branch of the Holyrood Crawleys has its roots in Chapel's Cove. John Crawley, from Chapel's Cove married Elizabeth Targett of Salmonier Line. Their early years were spent in the U.S


This is an old Holyrood name that has died out. The Cunninghams lived in Wicklow. The 1864 directory listed 2 Cunninghams - one a farmer, the other a planter. One John Cunningham was lost at sea in 1865. Richard Cunningham married Elizabeth Brien in 1889. The had five children: Frances, Clarise, Margaret, William and Stephen. Stephen died in 1918 at 23 years of age. The others moved away.


Although there are no Currans in Holyrood today, the name can be traced back to 1786 when Thomas Curreen was granted property. In June 1826, William Curran was recorded as skipper of the schooner "The Mary Excelder." In the 1864 Directory William and James are listed as planters and farmers.


Thomas and Mary Devereaux moved to Holyrood in the 1930's. Thomas had been the railway station agent n Avondale, Holyrood and Clarke's Beach and it was due to the railway that he settled in Holyrood. They bought Jimmy Wall's property and built their home overlooking the harbour. Mary Devereaux operated a thriving grocery business form this location for years.


John Doran came to Holyrood as a child when his widowed mother from Placentia married Joesph Fitzgerald from North Arm. John and Margaret Doran ahd 3 children who still live in Holyrood.


It is belived that Patrick and James Duff were the original settlers whol built their homes near the ferry site from "Duffs" to Chapel's Cove.


Two Dunphy men arrived in Holyrood from Country in Holyrood from County Kerry, Ireland. They settled near the waterside on the Shore Road. They both were named Bartholomew. This name has been passed down to their ancestors up to the present. Little is known of the elder Bartholomew except that he was born in Ireland in 1824 and died in Holyrood November 18, 1907. The other Bartholomew carried on a general business on the Shore Road.


In the 1864 Newfoundland directory three Dwyers - John, Patrick and William were listed as fisherman. These were three brothers. In addition there were 4 sisters: Bridget Mackey, Jane Healey, Ann Fewer and Maggie Hussey.


Fewers owned a large tract of land on the south side between Crawleys and Morriseys.The first Fewer settlers cannot be traced but, they had 3 sons: William, Thomas and Walter.


Fitzgeralds came from County Cork, Ireland. They settled in North Arm. Joseph Fitzgerald married a Mrs. Doran, a widow from Placentia.


The Fitzpatrick family in Holyrood is not an old Holyrood family. William and Elizabeth Fitzpatrick moved to Holyrood and raised their family of five children.


John James Fleming was born in the Highlands of Scotland in 1837 and died in Newfoundland in 1904. James worked at the fishery with the Woodford family who owned vessels at the time. He married Bridget Quinlain and had eight girls and one son.


Flood is another old name that is no longer in Holyrood. Floods were involved with the operation of the ferry service between Duffs and Chapel's Cove. John Flood came from Ireland on a boat owned by the Rice family of Ireland. In the 1864 directory John Flood Sr., was listed as a ferryman while John Jr., Patrick and William were fisherman


The earliest occurrence of the name Furey in Holyrood is in the 1864 directory. Several Thomas Fureys, a John and a James are listed. Thomas Furey is listed as obtaining land in Harbour Main in 1805.


The 1864 directory listed William Harden as a fisherman. By 1894 there was listed John Harding Sr., and John Jr., together with William, Patrick and Richard. Today only John Harding remains in Holyrood.


The Hawcos that now live in Holyrood originally came from Chapels Cove. The first Hawco appears in the 1894 directory as a fisherman of Holyrood.


The Healys can trace their roots back to 1798 when James Healy was recorded as the registered holder of a section of cleared property in Holyrood. Healys over the years settled a vast area of land stretching from Healy's Cove on the water side, over the Ridge Road and into North Arm. In 1864, James, John , Patrick and William Healy were recorded as fisherman while Philip Healy was a ferryman.


The name Hennessey is no longer in Holyrood. The last Hennessey moved to Grand Falls years ago and raised his family there. The 1894 directory lists John Hennessey, Liquors, and James and Daniel Hennessey as fisherman.


The Hynes name can be traced back to the North Arm area in the 1800's. Those Hynes ancestors left Holyrood to go to work in the railway. It wasn't until 1950 that the Hynes name reappeared in Holyrood wehn a descendant of the North Arm Hynes, Thomas and his wife Cecily moved here. Mr. Hynes took the position of Section Foreman with the CNR with headquarters at Holyrood.


The dates on the headstones of John and Brigid Joy go back to 1802 and 1804. John was a fisherman. They had three sons and two daughters. One daughter, Ellen was a teacher in North Arm. She later became the first postmistress of Holyrood.


The name Kelly in Holyrood dates back to the early 1800's. At that time, a James Kelly settled at the water side on the south side. James had 2 daughters. Ellen and Mary. Ellen's descendants today are Francis Hunt and family and Evelyn Devereaux and family. Mary Kelly married James Carroll and thier descendants include Jack Carroll's family and the children and grandchildren of Minnie and Carroll Veitch


The Kennedy name in Holyrood can be traced back to 1804 when Cornelius Kennedy is registered to have purchased 63 yards frontage of propery from Francis Beson for 10 pounds. This property would appear to be on the north side between Lewis property and Beson (or Besso) property. and was probably in the vicinity of Kennedy's Lane.


The Kieleys of Newfoundland trace their roots to Dungarvan, Ireland. In Newfoundland they were traders and planters. Those who came to Holyrood settled near the seashore on the south side, east of the Ultramar site. There were 3 sons of this family who produced the various Kieley clans today: Thomas, James and John.


The name Kirby in Holyrood dates back to the mid 1800's. In 1861, James Kirby is recorded as marrying Ann Curran of Holyrood. The 1864 directory lists a John Kirby as a fisherman. The Kirbys settled a large tract of land on the south side where the present gernation lives today.

La Cour:

the La Cour name is not originally a Holyrood name, however when John LaCour married Elizabeth O'Brien in 1901, he adopted Holyrood as his home. John was a builder by trade. He came from the well-known line of master craftsmen, the LaCours of Harbour Main. During the early his of their lives they lived in the O'Brien house on the water side of Holyrood South. Their daughter, Frances was one of Holyroods first entrants in the nursing profession.


The Lewis or Luce name in Holyrood dates back to 1776 when Aaron Luce is recorded as the registered holder of land. The Lewis' settled a large tract of land on the north side. Originally they owned all that property from Vince Besso's store to Kennedy's Lane and up Kennedy's Lane to the cemetery area. Over the years the generations spread out to settle large areas on the Salmonier Line as far as Seven Mile Post. Most Lewis families in Holyrood are related, albeit distantly.


The Mackey name in this part of Conception Bay can be traced back to Edward Mackey who purchased property in 1785 in Chapels Cove. In 1826, Thomas Mackey of Holyrood was recorded as skippering a schooner for the firm of Goodridge, Tessier, Fox and Greene of St. John's. The 1864 directory lists only one Mackey - John. He was lost at sea in 1865 aged 27 years.


The Morrissey name has died out in Holyrood. The last of the Morrisseys Mr. Paddy and Miss Maggie passed away at their home on the Main Beach in the 1960's. The 1894 directory Newfoundland directory listes 4 Morrisseys, who were brothers: Patrick, William, John and Thomas.

Maloney / Mullowney:

It appears that the early Maloneys in Holyrood spelled their names Mullowney. The birth records of some of the early Mullowneys spelled their names as such, while their marriage and death records spelled it Maloney. There were originally 3 brothers: Phillip, William, and John. It is unclear where they hailed from.


In the mid 1800's, John Murphy of Chapels Coved moved in on the Salmonier Line to what was then a wilderness area. The later became the caretaker of the Halfway House. The 1864 directory lists a John Murphy of the south side as a fisherman; Michael as a mason and farmer, Pearce and Thomas Murphy both fisherman. By 1898, there were three Murphys listed: Edward, John and Thomas who were all fishermen. Thomas' address was listed as Holyrood Peak and Edward and John were listed as being at Holyrood proper.


The O'Brien name in Holyrood dates back to the early 1800's. It is believed that the first O'Brien, Bartholemew, came over to Newfoundland from County Waterford, Ireland and settled on the south side near what was known in railway days as 'Briens Stand' or now as 'Briens Road.'


Local tradition has it that O'Neils were the first settlers in Holyrood. The settled a large tract of land in the center of the main beach area. Martin O'Neill is reported to have arrived in the 1600's. However, the earliest recorded O'Neill was that of Julianna O'Neal who registered property in Harbour Main in 1793. The 1864 directory lists 2 John 'Neils: one a planter on the south side and the other a fisherman.


The name O'Rourke was once synonymous with a well known Holyrood hotel which could be found as far back as 1897 in the Newfoundland Directory. The name goes back to the early 1800's when Michael O'Rourke and his wife landed from Ardmore, County Wexford, Ireland. Michael and Mary had a large family. Their sons all married, with the exception of Matthew who became a priest.


In the 1864 directory there were 8 Penneys listed. Dennis, James, Joesph (Sr. and Jr.), Phillip(2), Matthew and Thomas. The present day Penneys are descendants of these pioneers. However, over the years they settled in different areas.


The name Quinlan in Holyrood dates back to the mid 1800's. The birth of Peter to Peter and Ann (Woodford) Quinlain is listed for in 1857. Also in 1857 there is a record of marriage between Peter Besso and Susan Davis with John Quinlain and Ellen Davis. Today there are two clans of Quinlains in North Arm. The Quinlains, on the 'ridge' can trace their roots back to those mentioned above. The other Quinlan clan in North Arm is that of John Quinlain. John, born in 1899 in Harbour Main came to North Arm as an infant.


James Taplin came to Newfoundland as a shoemaker with the British army in the mid 1830's. He was born in Plymouth England and of Anglican faith, While stationed in St. John's he married an Irish widow, whose name was Milmore. He deserted the army to stay in Newfoundland. The family cam to Holyrood and settle on Taplins hill.


The Timmons Pioneers settled in the North Arm and Valley area of Holyrood. The 1864 directory lists Patrick as a fisherman and Edward as a carpenter and planter. Today, the Timmons name has died out.


This family of Irish extraction, dates back to 1858-59. Tom and Ellen Tubrett were the ancestors of the present Holyrood Turbretts. Tom was a fisherman.


The name Veitch has been synonymous with the settlement of Holyrood ever since the arrival of George Veitch who came to Newfoundland in the late 1780's. George settled his stake of land under the famous landmark "Georges Cove Mountain". The Veitchs were Lowland Scots, many of whom belonged to Noble and important families, even though they did not have the Clans, the Tartans and the Gaelic of their better-known countryman in the Scottish Highlands.


The first mention of this name occurs in the Harbour Main records of 1857 when Mary Wall was born to Nicholas and Anne Fewer- Wall. The 1864 directory lists Garrett, James and Nicholas as planters, Martin a fisherman while Nicholas and Garrett wall were planters on the south side.


The Walsh name is widely found in Holyrood. Roots go back to John and Ellen (Lyons) Walsh who married in County Wexford, Ireland in 1785 and emigrated to Newfoundland. The first settled in Petty Harbour and in 1786 moved to Cape Broyle. Descendants of John and Ellen are said to have settle at Holyrood and got established in the fishing trade. Early records show James Walsh in owning a large tract of land on the north side in the vicinity of the Cold Storage. Subsequent Walsh families settled vast areas of land on the Salmonier Line and Country Path.


The earliest record of this name goes back to 1894 directory where Phillip, Matthew, and John are listed as fishermen at Wicklow (Country Path). It is believed that these Whelans moved from the Cross in Chapel's Cove.


The original Williams, John, came from Ireland. He settled on the water side. These families fished and did some vegetable planting for a livelihood.


The Woodfords who settled at Woodfords station were of English and Scottish descent. The first of these was Michael Woodford, a planter who settled in the early 1800's. The North Arm section of Holyrood was the community of Woodfords. It had its own post office, telgraph office and railway station, all of which was served by the Woodford families.

Information Provided by:

Come Ashore To Holyrood
A Folk History of Newfoundland
Compiled by: Mary G. Veitch 1989.