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[Bann Valley] JOHNSTON in Kilrea
Some years ago I made a request for information here concerning a Robert Johnston who was born somewhere near Ballymena ca. 1808. Several people attempted to help me, but we simply ran out of ideas and information.
As luck would have it a distant cousin recently inherited a box full of Johnston family "goodies" which included old family photos and a note in which was stated that Robert "Red Robin" and his brother Archibald, b. 1815, were both born in Kilrea, Londonderry County, Ireland. Yes!!! I had been searching for this information since 1979 and was beginning to feel as if time were running out on me ;-)
Oral family history has young Archie travelling to Upper Canada in 1832 with 3 older sisters, 2 of whom may have been named Janet and Catherine. An older, married sister remained in Ireland. From this and some other information it appears that Robert "Red Robin" Johnston may have gone to Upper Canada with Francis "Frank" Johnston, b. ca. 1805 in England. I have found a record of Frank in Upper Canada as of 1826, and a record of a George Johnson [sic] in Upper Canada as of 1822. What is interesting is that Frank is found on the farm of George and eventually buys the farm. This suggests that George may have been kin, a brother, cousin or father to Robert and Frank. I have been unable to find anything further on George in Canada. After 1828 or so he just seems to disappear, or I haven't looked in the right places. As for Frank, if he were the elder brother to Robert and Archie then it would appear that the family could not have been in Ireland later than 1808 (Robert's birth in Ireland) and after 1805 as Frank was born in England in 1805. By 1832 most of the family had then moved on to Upper Canada, all that is but one married sister who remained in Ireland.
There is also one bit of oral family history that I have been unable to attach names to. The story is that when our Johnstons arrived, "it was with a great sadness". Had the mother died on the crossing, or had she died in Ireland previous to the trip? I've not been able to pin this down.
The 1831 census for Kilrea has two Johnston households, headed by Sarah & William respectively. Both consisted of 1 male and 4 females. William Johnston?s household were all Presbyterians. Sarah?s consisted of 2 Church of Ireland and 3 Presbyterians. Doing the math I believe that Sarah?s household is the one with Archibald and his 3 older sisters who accompanied him to Upper Canada. Sarah may have stayed behind - dunno. If someone can help me out with this I would appreciate it very much.
Question: Is there some way to find out the forenames of everyone in Sarah's household as of the 1831 census? Or anyother information about this family?
Any and all help with this will be much appreciated.
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