Francis Sheehan, landowner?

Finding the Sheehan family history has been frustrating. The latest Dunn ancestor to have emigrated to this country was Daniel Farrar in 1860, while the earliest were the Cogswells and Seavers back in the 1630’s, so there’s plenty of local history to trace. The Sheehans, on the other hand, arrived in 1901 (Grandfather) and 1892 (Grandmother), and didn’t leave much trace until arriving in Worcester sometime before 1905.

So it was interesting to come across the name “Francis Sheehan” in a list of landowners in Dungarvan, County Waterford, in the 1870’s. It’s from a forum posting on Ancestry.com: “Abstracted from genealogy library reference book, the following individuals owned an acre or more of land in Co. Waterford, Ireland, the latter part of the 1870s…” Francis’s entry reads: “Francis Sheehan, address Dungarvan, owned 179 acres.”

That’s a sizable amount for an Irish Catholic to have owned at the time, so it’s suspicious to say the least, but then again,  Francis seems to be a popular name in the family….

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