Monday, May 19, 2014

How A Professional Genealogist Found Her Townland Of Origin, Part II

This is the second post from professional genealogist, Lisa Walsh Dougherty, about how she found her townland of origin. To read her first post scroll down, or click here.

Lisa (Walsh) Dougherty has been an avid family history researcher for nearly 20 years.  Since 2009, she has shared her knowledge and experience with many through her volunteer hours, workshop trainings, and commissioned research.  A member of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG) and a graduate of the ProGen Study Group, she specializes in helping people with Irish roots discover their “Townland of Origin”.  Lisa is based in Upstate New York near Albany, and provides a free consultation toward assisting you in finding your own unique family story! You can find out about Lisa's professional genealogy services on her APG profile page.

Her website is Upstate NY Genealogy.

My great-great grandmother, Anne Mortimer, left County Laois (then Queen’s County), Ireland in the mid-1860s.  She married a man, James Walsh, who was native to nearly the same area, and they settled in Troy, NY.  Two brothers and a sister also emigrated and lived nearby, at least initially.  A brother John remained in Ireland, where he raised a large family.  The Mortimer letter writers of the 1970s, and the Mortimers who remain in the area today, are descended from John and his wife Maria Bennett.

Over the years 2000 to 2013, while busy with raising our son, I posted on a variety of genealogy message boards, and received sporadic replies from various family members, telling me of other Mortimer family members.  One who owned a pub in Kinsale, another who played in Wham’s backup band, still another who was a member of a popular UK “boy band” of the 1990s.  Those Mortimers were indeed a talented and diverse bunch, scattered all over the globe.

Recently, comparing family trees on, I stumbled across a tree that contained many of the same Mortimers that mine did.  I contacted the owner, who turned out to be a local Laois woman with a wealth of knowledge about the area and its families.  She gave me information about family members who had remained in Ireland that I did not have, and I was able to fill her in on those who had emigrated. After an absence of 14 years, I finally returned to Ireland in April 2014. My new-found Ancestry contact was able to arrange for me to meet my cousin, Sean Mortimer, brother of Brendan Mortimer who had shown us around in 1999, now, sadly, deceased.  We had a wonderful visit—he lives very nearby the townland of Killinure where my great-great grandmother was born.

3rd cousins Lisa (Walsh) Dougherty and Sean Mortimer, Killinure, County Laois, April 12, 2014

Since returning home, I've become Facebook “friends” with several other Mortimers from County Laois, many of whom heard of my visit through the grapevine.  Plans are underway for the formation of a Facebook group dedicated to the descendants of Michael Mortimer and Catherine Phalen, where we can all connect, share pictures, stories and interesting tidbits, 140 years after the family was separated.  Modern technology continues to propel my research forward, but the foundation laid by those 1970s letters is the strength the Mortimer family tree is built on.  My dad would approve, wherever he is today. 


  1. Technology is certainly an amazing way to connect to family and friends that we may never have been able to otherwise! It has brought me tremendous joy to be able to reconnect with you-my second cousin and to continue to be fascinated by your love and expertise of geaneology. Your father started you on a path that has brought so many families together and given answers to the questions of thousands. I am proud to call you cousin, even though not on the Irish side of the family!, even prouder to continue to be enlightened and captivated by your stories of history, family and reunion!

  2. The Mortimer letter writers of the 1970s, and the Mortimers who remain in the area today, are descended from John and his wife Maria Bennett.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Sound Activated Multi Color Strip Light delivers live rainbow pictures. Video equipment rental in Orlando by American Audio Visual

  5. Hello Everybody,
    My name is Mrs Sharon Sim. I live in Singapore and i am a happy woman today? and i told my self that any lender that rescue my family from our poor situation, i will refer any person that is looking for loan to him, he gave me happiness to me and my family, i was in need of a loan of $250,000.00 to start my life all over as i am a single mother with 3 kids I met this honest and GOD fearing man loan lender that help me with a loan of $250,000.00 SG. Dollar, he is a GOD fearing man, if you are in need of loan and you will pay back the loan please contact him tell him that is Mrs Sharon, that refer you to him. contact Dr Purva Pius, call/whats-App Contact Number +918929509036 via email:( Thank you.

  6. Do you need Finance?
    Are you looking for Finance?
    Are you looking for a money to enlarge your business?
    We help individuals and companies to obtain loan for business
    expanding and to setup a new business ranging any amount. Get a loan at affordable interest rate of 3%, Do you need this cash/loan for business and to clear your bills? Then send us an email now for more information contact us now via Email

  7. It’s amazing in support of me to truly have a web site that is valuable meant for my knowledge.

  8. I never thought I will come in contact with a real and potential hacker until I knew   brillianthackers800 at Gmail and he delivered a professional job,he is intelligent and understanding to control jobs that comes his way
    You can message on his number (385) 2501115,
    Contact him and be happy

  9. Are you in need of Urgent Loan Here no collateral required all problem regarding Loan is solve between a short period of time with a low interest rate of 2% and duration more than 20 years what are you waiting for apply now and solve your problem or start a business with Loan paying of various bills You have come to the right place just
    contact us
    whatspp Number +918929490461
    Mr Abdullah Ibrahim