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Re: [Bann Valley] The Henry Family of the Bann Valley

Moghrey mie to everyone (Manx Gaelic, hello in the morning),

I thought I should drop a general line to you all, especially those 
that have been, and are helping me 'unravel' the Hendersons of 
Ballyagan, Garvagh, Co. Londonderry. Especially thanks to Rebecca, 
Linde, Scot and Denver. Also a big thanks to Richard Torrens for 
making this 'forum facility' available.

As you will know I am 'stuck' at 1820, where the first posative 
sighting of John Henderson, and a 'Henderson family' at Ballyagan 
appear in the census and other documents. Further back is proving 
extremely difficult to trace. I'm sure you all have shared the same 
frustrations with the dearth of surviving records. 

However, I have a professional researcher working for me as to get 
anywhere at all, easy access to PRONI and GRONI is vital. Living on 
the Isle of Man makes things very difficult. I might as well be living 
in America! As far as this research goes. 

Currently a 'mapping excercise' is being undertaken with all known 
Hendersons in Ulster, and principally the Bann Valley. We think the 
Hendersons of my family may very well have landed at Ballycastle and 
migrated down through Ballymoney and finally Garvagh, then close by at 
Ballyagan. This excercise may well show this root. My researcher is 
also planning a similar excercise to see if we can place 'my 
Hendersons' to a location in Scotland. 

What I am interested in now, and this may seem a very naive questions, 
but is the 'Henderson name definitely from Scotland'? My family being 
Presbyterian, and living within the Townland structure would obviously 
strongly suggest that they were Scottish immigrants originally. Also, 
Henderson would appear to be a very rare name for Ireland, especially 
in the mid 1600's. So again, possible evidence that the Hendersons 
were Scottish immigrants. Any views on this, or resources / books / on 
line info that would 'say for definite' that 'most protestant 
Hendersons in Ulster' would be of Scottish origin would be very, 
gratefully recieved!

Of especially great interest to me is that I have inherited what I 
believe to be a Victorian painting, which is said to be 'our family 
coat of arms'. These arms have been in my family for generations. They 
are a very unusual form of 'the Henderson of Fordell Arms'. Anyone 
with any knowledge of 'Arms'? or where I could go to or look up? I 
have had the Lord Lyons office research them, nothing like them 
registered. They are of 'Scottish type' not English Henderson Arms. 
There doesnt seem to be much on the net for this kind of research? I 
can provide a picture if any is able to assist here. 

Next question! Is there any resource material out there, accessible 
relating to 'pre plantation history of Ulster, when the Earl of Antrim 
was Scottish, and earlier still, Scottish mercenaries where hired in 
from time to time by the clans. I have also heard of 'the red shanks' -
a band of marauding Scots. 

Finally, is there an Ulster DNA project?

Very many thanks 

Bill Henderson

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