Dawn Pisturino's Blog

My Writing Journey

My Irish Ancestors

on March 15, 2022
(Antrim, County Antrim, Northern Ireland)

My 5th great-grandfather, John McInally, was born in Antrim, County Antrim, Northern Ireland in 1760. His father, Owen McInally, was a flax grower. John was a weaver by trade. He married Sarah Dobbin in 1780 and emigrated to Grand Island, Quebec, Canada in 1781. His first son, John, was born aboard ship on the way over.

In Canada, John worked the cattle boats along the St. Lawrence River. One day, in 1827, when he was trying to control the steer, he fell overboard and drowned. His wife, Sarah, prowled the riverbanks, calling his name, unable to accept the possibility of his death. But he was, indeed, drowned and later buried in the cemetery at Notre Dame Catholic Church in Quebec. Sarah was forced by poverty to adopt out her five boys to other families. Although the boys were baptized Catholic, they only found homes in Protestant families and were brought up as such. Broken-hearted by the loss of her family, Sarah soon followed her husband to the grave.

Like America, Canada was colonized by immigrants from France, the British Isles, and other nations. After the American Revolution, many Loyalists to the British Crown emigrated north. Although I live in America, I have a lot of relatives in Canada – mostly around Ontario – from both sides of the family. Before COVID, they held a huge family reunion every year. Although invited, I never went. Maybe one of these days, I’ll get there!

Dawn Pisturino

March 15, 2022

Copyright 2022 Dawn Pisturino. All Rights Reserved.


23 responses to “My Irish Ancestors

  1. Jim Wingrove says:

    I’m in Toronto πŸ‘ still lots of Irish and Irish influence. My paternal grandfather was Irish πŸ€πŸ€πŸ€

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Iowa Life says:

    I sure hope you are able to go one of these days Dawn.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. utahan15 says:

    cor unum
    st patrick~!
    when is the guiness
    coffee beer coming out?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Girlfriend, this is so fascinating. Listen, if possible try to make that trip one day. I think it will certainly be touching, emotional, unforgettable, and heartwarming. πŸ™πŸΌπŸ’–πŸ€—

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Neal Saye says:

    Oh, Dawn. I loved this post. I want you to be able to go one day too!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Neal Saye says:

    Oh, and Robert and I are in Savannah, which surprisingly has a large Irish population.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Carolyn Page says:

    That was a lovely read, Dawn. I too have Irish ancestry and would love to visit Ireland one day! And, for that matter, Canada! There are so many similarities between our two countries. You would, I’m sure, love Australia.
    I do hope that, one day, you will get along to that family reunion. I’m sure there are many interesting and enjoyable surprises in store for you. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  8. elvira797mx says:

    Wow! Very interesting, thank’s for share Dawn.
    Have a wonderful time!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Michele Lee says:

    Interesting family history, Dawn, marked with tragedy. Life isn’t easy now, but it was unforgiving then. Twelve generations ago, my maternal ancestor Edward Rippy arrived here from Ireland and my dad’s father was born and raised in Saskatchewan, CA. Isn’t it interesting… the people and paths that led to us. ✨

    Liked by 1 person

  10. […] My Irish Ancestors β€” Dawn Pisturino’s Blog […]

    Liked by 1 person

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