Looking for McDowell Family from Ballymena, County Antrim, Northern Ireland and New Zealand :: FamilyTreeCircles.com Genealogy
<< Previous - Next >>

Looking for McDowell Family from Ballymena, County Antrim, Northern Ireland and New Zealand

Query by debbiemidson

Searching for family of Alfred Michael McDowell born 24 January 1906 in Ballymena, County Antrim, Northern Ireland.

Mother: Ellen McDowell
Father: John Patrick McDowell

1st Wife: Sophie Esther Anderson (daughter: Patricia Mary Chadwick)
2nd Wife: Jean Mildred Tanner (two sons(?))

Died 24 January 1973 in Auckland New Zealand.

Viewed: 10250 times
by debbiemidson Profile | Research | Contact | Subscribe | Block this user
on 2011-05-31 01:52:07

debbiemidson , from Sydney (born in Auckland, New Zealand), has been a Family Tree Circles member since May 2011. is researching the following names: STEWART, MCDOWELL, ANDERSON and 1 other(s).

Do you know someone who can help? Share this:


by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-04 04:50:57

I am Shannon Julius McDowell and I believe your talking about my grandfather. My Father is Brian Dennis McDowell son of Alfred Michael McDowell and Jean Mildred Tanner.

by debbiemidson on 2011-09-04 08:21:07

Hello Shannon
Thanks for responding to my journal on Family Tree Circles. I think we probably do share the same grandfather. I wonder if your family knew that Alfred had a daughter (my mother) from his first marriage in the late 1920's? They were very young...... I hope to hear from you again.
Debbie Midson

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-04 15:48:13

We did not know the year Grandfather was born but we knew his name and where he was born and what month. We knew he had children in a marriage before his one with Jean Tanner but he didn't speck about it or Ireland because of the pain it brought him, but everything matches up.

I spoke to my father about this and he was truly shocked, surprised, excited and nervous. We have wanted to find the other side for along time.

I would love to continue our contact and share our information about our grandfather and the McDowell Clan.

The other brother is Martin McDowell.

He said he would load a picture of his Father on Facebook soon and share it with me, so that I could share it with you if you like.

Seems my grandfather and I have alot in common as I also married young and had a daughter then got divorced and then I left New Zealand. However I am always in contact with my daughter Eilish whom I love very much.

I am so glad we found you after all this time, is truly amazing.

With warm regards to our kin,

Shannon Julius McDowell

by debbiemidson on 2011-09-04 19:11:46

Hello Shannon

Nice to hear from you again.

My mother is your aunt and your father's half sister. She lived in Rotorua for about ten years until she moved over to Sydney a couple of years ago. Funny to think that your father was living in Tauranga (where we visited many times) and his sister was not far away in Rotorua. She just turned 82. Her name is Patricia. She tells me that she never heard from her father again after her parents were divorced. However, I understand that she did see him in Pakuranga (where we were living) when he was visiting our neighbours "The Corlett Family". She was shocked to see him but she recognised him instantly.

I have one brother (Timothy) who lives in Kent in England. We are your first cousins. I have one daughter named Emily (14 years old).

I had a few emails from Ireland (via FamilyTreeCircles) from a cousin who is related to the brother of OUR great grandmother (Ellen). He tells me that she was a lovely woman.

For some reason, I was under the impression that someone was living in Glen Innes in Auckland. I actually did a mail out to all the McDowells in Auckland a couple of years ago, trying to make contact. I did hear from a couple of people but it turned out they were not related.

I would love to see a photo of our grandfather. I received a couple of photos from Ireland of Alfred's cousins and can see some family resemblance with my mother.

I do hope to hear from you again.

Best regards

Debbie Midson

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-04 20:07:58

Hi Cousin,

I am very glad to hear your mother is doing well.

We lived in Tauranga then moved to Te Puke. Grandmother Jean Tanner was born in Te Puke. We also visited Rotorua many times. Later we moved to the North Shore, Auckland.

Mum, Dad and my brother Anthony now live in Brisbane, QLD. My daughter Eilish (12 years lives with her mum) and my brother Carl and his kids live in Auckland, New Zealand. After my divorce I moved to Denver, Colorado, USA.

Dad grew up in Glen Innes, so that was him and Martin and I never met the Corlett Family.

We would love to make contact with the family back in Ireland and later meet up with them when my wife and I go there in the future.

If you are on facebook you can find me under Shannon Julius McDowell I believe I am the only Shannon Julius, so finding me should be pretty straight forward.

If you have any further pictures information we would gladly share what we have.

Till later have a good one,


by debbiemidson on 2011-09-04 20:14:04

Hi Shannon
Wow, thanks for your quick response to my email.
I am just off to work now but when I get home later on this afternoon I will send you a photo I got from Ireland of our Great Great Grandparents - William McDowell and Mary Ann Donay (Alfred's grantparents).

Would it be possible for you to send me your email address so that I can scan email some photos and certificates? My email address is:

[email protected]

I hope to hear from you again soon.

Your cousin

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-04 20:52:32

Hi Cousin,

My email is [email protected]

that would be wonderful thank you very much.

Have a good one,


by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 04:22:34

You may find this interesting: http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1911/Antrim/Ballymena_Town/Albert_Street/116276/

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 04:37:44

and http://www.ulsterancestry.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=3150

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 05:29:08

and http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1901/Antrim/Ballymena_and_Town_and_Urban_District_of_Ballymena/Ladysmith_Terrace/926939/

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 05:43:23

Granddad said that his father was Roman Catholic with his mother being Protestant.

Assuming that Mr John Patrick McDowell was also from County Antrim these are the possible candidates:




by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 05:59:48

The oldest son William of William McDowell and Mary Ann Donay married Sarah Erwin:


by debbiemidson on 2011-09-05 07:00:48

Hi Shannon
Thanks for all this information.

The things to consider are that Alfred was living with his grandmother and uncles and aunties in 1911 when he was four years old.

Colin Hayes from Ireland who is our cousin from the line of Samuel McDowell (Ellen's Brother) sent me information that says:

"I can confirm that Ellen (nellie / helen) Mc Dowell never got married. Confirmed by her niece and my great aunt. Mary Ann Mc Dowell (known as May). She tells me that Ellen lived to at least her 80s.

She had at least 3 children, possibly 4.

The eldest was called William McDowell, born around 1904. He also married a Nellie ?. Both of them must have been small. They had at least one son. Yes he was called Alfie.

Ellen next was Alfie. You know more here. My great aunt knew he went to AUS or NZ.

Ellen third child was Margaret McDowell born around 1909. She married a Sammy Marks. Margaret and sammy had 4 children I know off.
Norman Marks
Sammy Marks
Dessie Marks
Elizabeth Marks . she married ? Gordon (surname). Mr Gordon got killed by a lorry in Ballymena. My great Aunt May tells me a daughter married someone ? armstrong."

The 1901 census reveals more children of William and Mary Ann:



by debbiemidson on 2011-09-05 09:06:29

Hey Shannon
I have tried to send you two emails. One with photos....
Did you get them?
One of them just came back to me.

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 15:20:04

Hi Debbie

Yes I got one with a photo of your mum and your daughter and one of Great Grandparents William and Mary Ann McDowell. It also had a grey picture and a picture with a leaf on it.

Yes I noticed the oldest son was William McDowell. My Dad remembers his father talking about his father and his uncle getting involved in the Northern Ireland Issues as a boy. He told Dad that his mother was Protestant and Father Catholic.

If this were true there would be alot of reasons for them to keep each other secret or for the family to hide the fact.

There are alot of John McDowells in the 1911 Census however they don't mention a John Patrick as they not showing the Middle name. Only 5 Candidates in the whole of Antrim were Catholic which narrows the field.

Most of these John McDowells were married so that kinda says it all does it. However there is one in Particular from McDowell's Row in Belfast that is about the right age and seems to have gotten married and had kids the year after Alfred was born.

Checking Just John Patrick without the McDowell there was no John Patrick anywhere in Antrim at that time. What we need is someone to check these johns out and find out if any were a John Patrick McDowell. I couldn't sleep a wink last nite and was up checking all the records of County Antrim I could get my hands on.

So I will discuss this further with my father today. If you have a copy of the Birth Cert could you please scan and send. It would make my dad very happy and when I speck to him I will ask him to hurry with getting me the picture of Grandfather.



by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 15:40:33

Hi Debbie,

Forgot to mention....

Your Daughter looks alot like my daughter and we have bunch of family photos on Facebook. Not yet one with granddad but still pictures of my mum and dad, the boys and our kids. Maybe you could sign up for Facebook that way you can see the pictures and everything else.

Have a good one,


by debbiemidson on 2011-09-05 17:23:24

LOL Shannon
I was up until 1.30am on a search as well!
I started making a family tree so that I could keep track of everything I was finding out. I sent you an invitation to join the family tree but it came back as having an incorrect email address.
Both my brother Timothy and I are real night time people - always up until the small hours on the computer......


by debbiemidson on 2011-09-05 19:04:19

Hey Shannon
I have been thinking about your comments.
As there is definitely no father noted on the birth certificate, Alfred has probably inherited the name McDowell from his mother Ellen. Even if all of Ellen's children had the same father, unless it was incest, Alfred's father probably wouldn't have had the name McDowell.
I reckon we need to look to Maggie McDowell (Alfred's sister) who was two years old at the 1911 census. She is the one who Colin Hayes can trace saying that she married a Gordon - perhaps there are living relatives who know more abour Maggie & and Alfred's father??

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 21:39:50

Hi Debbie,

Just got off the phone with the Old Man he going to send me what he can asap and the rest later as he will have to get them scanned and put on a CD.

He is trying to locate all the old photos.

Once he sends those to me I will include some of our other family pictures and send them on to you.

Yes I have a very bad habit of staying up into the wee hours of the morning.

Apparently there is are occasions when McDowell's have got together but not been incestuously related (2nd cousins or further).

On that subject there are some things that lead us to believe that there was a Catholic John Patrick McDowell and that grandad knew him. However we would rather not speck about that in a public setting due to the nature of the activities involved, at the time when all the issues were going on in Northern Ireland. That said we are not 100% curtain.

He also mentioned the fact that he had family on both sides as the primary reason he left. Ether way I like to consider it a double dose of McDowell.

My dad has expressed interest in specking to his sister if she is also inclined.

He also said that he knew "The Corlett Family" you mentioned.

Colin Hayes mentioned of the website mentioned above that:
- William McDowell born about 1856, lived near Straid Ahoghill Antrim
- William McDowell's Father was Thomas McDowell
- William McDowell and Mary Ann Doey were married in Ahoghill church of Ireland in 1880.
- William McDowell and Mary are buried in Ahoghill Church Of Ireland

The 1901 Census shows the oldest Son William was born in Scotland. So looks like they moved to Scotland then moved back.

Well that's it for the moment...

Have a good one,

Shannon Mc Dowell

by debbiemidson on 2011-09-05 22:44:27

I haven't forgotten about the copies of the birth certificates etc.
When I got them from Ireland they came on A3 paper and I only have an A4 scanner. I need to go and get them reduced to A4 so that I can scan and email them to you.

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-05 23:38:33

no worries and thank you

by debbiemidson on 2011-09-06 00:31:43

Just realised that the wedding certificate I emailed you is for Alfred's great grandparents, i.e. Ellen's grandparents and William's parents.

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-06 02:29:09

awesome I just sent an email reply with some family photos that I had avaliable at the moment.

by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-07 14:44:46

Did you get the email I sent?

user alderasstua deactivated
by ShannonMCD on 2011-09-09 15:49:31


user cariellohose deactivated
by debbiemidson on 2011-09-09 17:27:36

I don't know how this system works? Looks like some hacked in on our thread????

user helseranto deactivated
user ganiewins deactivated
user byesher deactivated
user kohlesmario deactivated
user rombergbook deactivated
user rombergbook deactivated
user kohlesmario deactivated
user kohlesmario deactivated
user ellideon deactivated
user landherrharl deactivated
user aythbroo deactivated
user ickischgeor deactivated
user mbletonerni deactivated
user wiefelhoaudr deactivated
user abrasuellotili deactivated
user azelaisblan deactivated
user arrellanlinw deactivated
user agredoviol deactivated
user uranotel deactivated
user pszack deactivated
user aisscot deactivated
user rosebushmari deactivated
user ngreenbackmarti deactivated
user klephil deactivated
user opezrodn deactivated
user sauserwiley deactivated
user odbergmingr deactivated
user omishzina deactivated
user setzlerterr deactivated
user ovicodeon deactivated
user setzlerterr deactivated
user krusemarrale deactivated
user omohammasant deactivated
user luscheconn deactivated
user nabnetruebe deactivated
user cavallotanja deactivated
user angotrac deactivated
user nemckonemade deactivated
user ntezsari deactivated
user morlockmaria deactivated
user morlockmaria deactivated
user morlockmaria deactivated
user malangolind deactivated
user leellerscot deactivated
user tiattilida deactivated
user tlsrutledgnick deactivated
user rdsturdivajohn deactivated
user agpoagerudo deactivated
user grhlagrottjere deactivated
user ngnlangittone deactivated
user ptnuptsethe deactivated
user saesano deactivated
user ksarksonzoni deactivated
user gsuggsaleu deactivated
user hoawhornvern deactivated
user zoezona deactivated
user webowelave deactivated
user vtinpervisvalen deactivated

Register or Sign in to comment on this journal.