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« Everybody's entitled to an opinion | Main | Eons of biology »


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You Americans are funny, calling yourselves "Irish" just because you've got an ancestor from there, no matter how far away on your family tree it is.

My Grandparents were Irish - not in the American sense, they were actually born and raised there - but I've never considered myself anything other than English.

Jack (CommonSenseDesk)


Thanks for the comment at CSD. As a matter of fact, that list is reflective of any number of bits of advice I received along the way. So it did strike a chord and brought back plenty of memories of the old-timers who actually spoke in that almost lyrical way when quietly, or not, providing advice.

Actually, Shannon is not a clan name but my people are from the west of Ireland. It is said that those with that name came across under somewhat less than ideal circumstances.

As the story goes, there may have been certain Irish citizens who were reluctant to disclose their identities when attempting to depart from that fair land ~ just ahead of the authorities, as it were. They're affiliations, depending on the era, allegedly ran from Fenian to Republican to Provo.

So, in order to avoid the challenges one would undoubtedly face when detained at the boat by the English authorities they abandoned their traditional familiy names and chose one less likely to raise suspicion ~ like a town, river or something else relatively innocuous. When they arrived at Ellis their papers naturally reflected a new name and it stayed with them and their heirs.

A little romantic, perhaps, but fun and the stuff that family myths are made of.

harry near indy

iirc, revere, as is paul and his midnight ride, is a french name, and he was a hugonaut -- that was a protestant frenchman who fled france after the king and church cracked down on them. they often went to england or holland, where they were welcomed, and some moved on to the americas.


Your sainted grandmother would have been green with envy (sorry) towards my own sainted grandmother. When we moved to Hawai'i she went to see a Don Ho show, and shen they met he was very gracious to her.


Lee, Funny? Don't you mean crazy?

Jack, I won't tell the Black and Tans. Ireland forever!

Harry, that fits with what my grandfather told me. He said the Reveres in our family tree used to have a more French sounding name. Rioviere or something.

Link, If my grandmother is having her way in the afterlife, she's been haunting Don Ho for eight years now.

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