McKinley/Sullivan and Related Families
John McKinley born Rathlin Island/Ballycastle, Co. Antrim abt 1780 died ???? probably Rathlin & Mary Weir born Rathlin Island/Ballycastle, Co. Antrim abt 1780 died ???? probably Rathlin
McKinleys were originally Highland Scots, but by
the 1700s they were living on Rathlin Island (photo left taken approaching
Rathlin 1968, Church Bay) off the coast of Ballycastle, Co. Antrim, N. Ireland.
The 1766 Religious Survey returned by the Ministers of the various Civil Parishes to the Irish House of
Lords for Rathlin was: Protestant Families 28, Papist Families 92.
Co. Antrim 1803 Agricultural Census,breakdown of surnames on Rathlin Island (photo left kindly provided by BW 1995): Anderson 13, Black 7, Bradley 1, Cresly 1, Gage 1, Grimes 1, Horan 4, Hunter 2, Lamont 3, McCarter 3, McCay 2, McCormick 1, McCurdy 31, McFall 6, McKey 2, McKinla 3, McLhargy 5, McQuig 8, McQuilk 6, McQuilkan 1 (may have become Wilkinson in U.S.), McQuilkin 1, Miller 1, Moore 1, Morrison 13, Ritchurson 1, Wier 3, Wrenkin 1
Among these families was a John McKinley who married a Mary Weir and had a son Archibald born 25 March 1804. Archie married Ann "Nancy" Morrison of Rathlin in 1827 and they had 8 sons: John 1827, Daniel 1832, James 1834, Alexander 1837, Archibald 1840, Michael 1842, Patrick 1845 and William 1848.
Selected McKinley Marriages & Baptisms in Ramoan Parish, Ballycastle (1825-1958):
The following inscriptions were copied from the crumbling headstones at St Thomas
Church (photo at left kindly sent by BW 1995), Rathlin Island in 1967 and probably belong to McKinley ancestors, although their relationship has not been
The McKinley family was from Ballycastle, a sea-port, market and post-town, in the parish of Ramoan, and Rathlin, an island and parish, both places located in the baroney of Carey, county of Antrim, and province of ulster. The McKinleys were said to go back and forth to Greenock from Rathlin to work in the shipbuilding industry. Greenock is a city that sits on the south bank of the River Clyde just before the river makes a sharp turn to the south to empty into the Firth of Clyde. Greenock is in Renfrewshire and is about 15-20 miles west of the center of Glasgow. Another family story is that If the second gathering of the McKinleys booklet is correct, the immigrant McKinleys, who settled in Ireland from Scotland arrived about 1715 (so First Jacobite Rebellion?) at Fair Head, Co Antrim near Ballycastle.
Archie, Nancy and their youngest son William emigrated to live on their son John's Iowa farm abt 1863, probably sailing from Liverpool to New York City as their other sons had previously. They w/h/b ages 59, 58 and 15, respectively.
Here's how the Irish might have come from New York to Iowa: Many came through waterways---via the Erie Canal, then by steamboat across Lake Erie, up to Lake Huron, then around the lower peninsula of Michigan following Lake Michigan to Milwaukee or Chicago. From there they could buy a horse and wagon to get to Iowa. They could have come from the East by railroad at that time, but it was a more expensive option.
Notes of Archibald Gustin McKinley: McKinley family research shows that they originated as a clan in Scotland in 1200 A.D., and branches came to Ireland in 1610 A.D. when James I made "Plantations" of Scottish settlers there in 1610 A.D. In Gaelic, the name was Mac Fionnlaoic -- "sons or descendants of Fionnlaoic" a Scottish chief who died in 1170 A.D., and whose name meant fair-hero. The McKinley clan occupied over 2000 acres of land originally in the district of Lennox, just north of Glasgow and were also associated with the Buchanan Clan; they still live there today in large numbers and have their own Tartan and Coat of Arms, some insist on accenting the "lay" of the name. McFinley would be a more logical anglicisation of the name; (from Fionn, fair one), the "k" merely being a form of "Mack." There is no similar name in Ireland, but the McKinleys have behind them over 400 years of history as settlers in Northern Ireland. At Ballycastle in County Antrim McKinleys came from Scotland in 1715 with the opening of coal mines in that town, and abstracts of mining documents show a number of McKinleys as mineworkers.
Here's a little Scot's history:
1609 - James VI King of Scotland (son of captured Mary Queen of Scots) sends Scot settlers to Northern Ireland to begin the "plantations."
I've been told that the Scottish McKinleys came from a place called "The Annie," a corruption of the Gaelic An-Abhain-fheidh, meaning "The Ford of the Stag," which is near Callender in Perthshire. This was in the 1600s. Before 1600, being of many clans, the McKinleys were from everywhere in Scotland. After the 1600s, there was James the Trooper (born 1671) who went to Ireland.
Arms, crest and motto :--gu, a stag trippant ar; crest, an unarmed arm holding a branch of olive, all ppr.; motto, "Not too much."
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