St Johnston and Carrigans Donegal



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Mary Jane Duggan and her husband James Ward


James Alexander Ward with wife Mary Jane Dugan/Dougan of Co Donegal and 2 sons (Thanks Barbara Murphy-Bridge).  The above photo was taken in Malta.  Mary was Robert Dugans daughter and James Dugan witnessed the marriage.

Headstone reads, 

In Loving Memory of my dear parents

James A. WARD

Died 20th May 1921 aged 52

His wife Mary Jane

Died 2nd September 1971 aged 91

Mary Jane's husband James A Ward was married before.  He wed 20 year old Mary Jane on Christmas Day 1900 in Longtower Church Derry.   By 1911, she had 4 children surviving out of 7.  Mary Jane herself married again and became Mary Jane Matthewson.  Her daughter Winnie who married Begley lived in Ard Baithin until her death.

Message: The webmaster of recently received a message.

Patrick, I have just come across your website and thought I would reach out in hope that you might be able to provide me with some information.

I and my family have located some of our ancestors to St Johnston, Donegal. We have also, in May 2019, made the trip up to visit their graves. We are hoping to find out more about them. Their names are James Alexander Ward (died 1921) and Mary Jane Ward (died 1971) and both are buried in the old graveyard on Church Street.

We have also found them on the 1911 census in Whitehill they are the first family noted. These are my great-great-great-grandparents. Unfortunately we don't know much else about them. We are hoping to try and find some other family or someone who maybe knew them so that we can get a bit more information and hopefully fill in the blanks of our family history. We have some knowledge of James Alexander's other 2 children (Annie and John) from his previous marriage. Annie moved to America and we have found family based there. John got married in 1918 and unfortunately died soon after the birth of his first child. He died in 1919 during the war - This dedication notes his father and step-mother as residing in St. Johnston.

Johns child, Catherine Ward, is my great-grandmother. Unfortunately we know very little about her and due to my grandmother being placed in an orphanage as a child, we have no information or records. She was placed into the Sister's of Mercy in Athlone by her mother, due to being born out of wedlock, and does not know who her father is. I am hoping that if we can find someone in the Ward family, or someone who knew them, we can see if they have any memories or knowledge of our family. We would love for my grandmother to be able to meet some sort of family member and learn about her heritage. The grave had a small fence around it and some fake flowers so we believe there may have been someone looking after it in the past. If you have any information on the Ward family, or know of someone who might, please let me know. We would be extremely grateful for anything. From Aimee McCabe.

John Duggan and his sister Mary Jane Duggan Ward Matthewson

Mary Jane's daughter Winnie Begley with Matthew Duggan her cousin