The O'Connor Farmers of Burnthouse Killanin

Stephen OConnor Army Record

Having recently finally discovered where in Ireland my Grandfather’s origins actually came from, I’d like to share this story.

In 1895 Michael O’Connor (Farmer), and son of John O’Connor, also a farmer in the area, married Catherine D’Arcy, daughter of Stephen D’Arcy – also a farmer in the area. There were two other D’Arcy’s present at the wedding a Bridget and Patrick (not sure what relation they were – could have been siblings to Catherine).

They had a son Stephen Michael O’Connor (1897 – listed simply as Stephen Connor on the birth records), and also another I believe Patrick Joseph O’Connor. In 1911, Stephen lied about his age as many did back then and joined the Royal Dublin Fusilers. I found his army record, which I’ll attach to this document, which points us back to his hometown and mother’s name “Kate”. But also the give-away clue which sent a shiver down my spine when I realised “It’s HIM!”…. address on discharge: Railway Institution, Multan, India. Where 3 months after discharge from the army he married a local Anglo-India girl Gertrude Rosanna New. They had many children who apparently passed away, but luckily for me, my grandfather Stephen Michael O’Connor was born in 1928 and survived for me to tell the tale. On Stephen’s birth record somehow there was a note added to it “Married in India”, which closed the circle and confirmed I had the correct one.

Two years before the fall of the British Empire in India, my grandfather Stephen, his mother and her new husband and many more kids returned to the UK, where they lived and many offspring since in Kent, England. My grandfather met my nan Kathleen Angus and moved to where she grew up in Yiewsley (outer west London).

My grandparents had 8 children, and now have many grand and great grandchildren, mostly living in or around West London to this day (including myself).

But now I wish to rediscover our roots back from Burnthouse, Killanin and beyond. Would be great to find out which of the famous O’Connor clans we actually descend from.

If anyone has any information about Michael & Kate or their parents, or would simply like to get in touch, I would be most greatful.

This page was added on 23/10/2018.

Comments about this page

  • Hello,
    I am the grandson of Stephen Connor /O’Connor, currently residing in County Clare. He was one of 5 boys, John, then Stephen, Michael, William and Nicholas. Nicholas moved to Surrey, Willie to Pittsburgh. I don’t know what happened to John, Steve did run off to fight, lied about his age, served in WW1 I believe. Michael and maybe John too, joined the Old IRA.
    We have seen printed material listing Steve’s name in the Western Division, Connemara Brigade, during the War of Independence, maybe he joined his brothers in the struggle? I think there was only one S. Connor in Burnthouse at the time. Possibly after the Treaty, Ireland being in a mess, and him looking for adventure, he re-joined the British army and ended up in India again. Family story is that he brought a lady back to Burnthouse, of foreign looks
    shall we say, Kate wouldn’t let them in the house, so he built a ‘cabin ‘ in the yard. Things didn’t work out, so he left. He certainly went back to India, as he met the daughter of a plantation owner, Gertrude Stella Martin, her mother’s name was O’Reilly.
    She was only 16 when she married Steve about 1928
    They had 5 kids, Terence the eldest, died at 3, choked, then my mother Eve, Michael, Patrick, and
    Mervyn who died of cot death at 6 month’s.
    Gertrude died at 38, of a brain tumour, nursed to the last by my mother.
    Steve had fought at Dunkirk, survived that, the family had settled in Widnes, Lancashire, where he ended up in civvy street, I don’t know if he saw WW2 out in the army or not. My mother moved to Nottinghamshire afterher mum’s death, where she met my father.
    We’d drive to Widnes to visit on occasion, or Steve would get the train down to us, he didn’t drive.
    Sadly, he suffered 2 strokes, and died in 1965,
    I’m named after him, I hope this helps whoever is interested,
    Best Regards, Steve Underwood

    By Steve Underwood (21/03/2021)
  • Right, I can’t seem to edit the page, but all of the related documents and images can be found on my public family tree here:

    By Rowland Corentin (05/12/2018)
  • Hi Jim,

    Thanks for replying. I’ll amend the page to include my Grandad’s birth record from 1928.

    My name is Rowland Corentin, born in 1979 to Susan Dawn O’Connor & Joseph Antoine Corentin.

    My mum, Susan was Stephen Michael O’Connor (Junior)’s daughter. He married Kathleen Angus in Uxbridge, Middlesex in Jan-Mar 1948, just two years after returning from India – I have the passenger list also, which I’ll upload. His mother Gertrude had remarried and was now a Digweed by the time they left India.

    By Rowland Corentin (05/12/2018)
  • Hi,

    In relation to this posting, Stephen Michael Connor (1)would have been your great grandfather?

    Killannin parish records have a “Stephen Michael Connor” born to Michael Connor and Kate Darcy on October 27th 1898 in Burnthouse and baptised on October 30th.
    Baptismal Sponsors: Stepen Darcy and Margaret Lydon.
    “Married in India” is written beside the entry

    It would be helpful in your search to include a copy of the birth record of your grandfather who was born in India in 1928 and your own name.


    Jim Fahy – October 24th 2018

    By Jim Fahy (24/10/2018)

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