McCarthy Family History – Welcome

Welcome to the McCarthy Family Genealogy Project.

This web site is designed to provide information and exchange of data concerning the McCarthy Family originating in Ireland.

At this stage our county of origin in Ireland is unknown. The earliest record of this branch of McCarthy family has been traced back to one James McCarthy and dates back to 18 July 1866 when he got married to Katrina Magdalena du Preez in Humansdorp, in South Africa.

Up to now we have been unable to obtain information regarding James Mc Carthy’s forbearers and this is a very high priority as it would take our knowledge to another generation. This makes James McCarthy the progenitor or Patriarch, in our family line.

“A progenitor is an ancestor in direct line. In genealogical terms this refers to the earliest proven person in a line“.

The majority of the information that we have accumulated relates to the descendants of James and is fairly extensive.

This branch of the McCarthy Family has spread rapidly in five generations with active direct and collateral relative contacts in South Africa.

The site provides information on both paternal & maternal ancestors.

A maternal ancestor is an ancestor on the mother’s side of the family & a paternal an ancestor on the father’s side. Your father’s mother is your paternal grandmother & your mother’s mother your maternal grandmother.

At this stage we have limited information regarding some of his children.

The work is on-going and should you have any information or pictures relevant to this family, background or origins please contact us Hendrik or my wife Cornelia McCarthy

This knowledge belongs to all our descendants, help us to collect and preserve the knowledge.

Update Status:

September 2015

Updated our contact detail and currently  testing an interesting hypothesis: Petro contacted me and shared a story told to her as a child.

The great grandfather was a soldier that came to South Africa to fight in the border wars. He apparently got of the ship, the ship sailed back and sank. His family in Ireland assumed that he was dead.

I am investigating and found that the “HMS Birkenhead  was wrecked on 26 February 1852, while transporting troops to Algoa Bay at Danger Point near Gansbaai, 140 kilometres from Cape Town, South Africa. There were not enough serviceable lifeboats for all the passengers, and the soldiers famously stood firm, thereby allowing the women and children to board the boats safely.

Only 193 of the 643 people on board survived, and the soldiers’ bravery gave rise to the “women and children first” protocol when abandoning ships.”(Wikipedia). The ship stopped at Simonstown and some passengers and sick soldiers got off.  I am searching and trying to find any documents with the names of the soldiers that got off at Simonstown. If any person can assist please contact me?

April 2012:

  • added Photo Album  of my Great Grandfather Hercules McCarthy)


May 2012

  • Added photo albums under the McCarthy Gallery for My grand father, my father Harry, his sister Lettie and all my Uncles Willem, Hendrik, Piet, James and Gert

Also added the descendants for James McCarthy

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