Clare County Library
Clare Genealogy

Donated Material: Family Histories

The Gallery Family of Newhall, Ennis, Co. Clare:
The story of a middle-class Clare family in the 19th and early 20th centuries

Title: The Gallery Family of Newhall, Ennis, Co. Clare
Type of Material: Family History

Newhall / Ballybeg; Ennis; Doonogan, Kilmurry Ibrickan;
Greece Monroe County, Rochester, New York.

Dates: 1792 - 1923
Source: Various
Transcriber/Donator: Lucille Ellis

The Gallery family name is quite unusual, occurring almost exclusively in the eastern counties of Northern Ireland and in Clare. There were Gallerys (formerly known as Gillereagh or McGillereagh) living in Clare since Elizabethan times. In the first quarter of the 19th century there were several Gallery families in Clare, mainly in Ennistymon/Lahinch, Kilmurry Ibrickane, Kilmaley and Ennis/Clarecastle. Firm connections have not yet been made between these families, though I have no doubt they are there. New families were established through emigration, especially to North America: see Cathy Joynt Labath on Iowa Gallerys and Margaret Gallery on Montreal Gallerys, both on this site, and research is ongoing on both sides of the Atlantic – see Pam Costa’s website especially

The family unit at which I am looking is the “Christopher Gallery” family, who seem to have been both farmers in the Newhall / Ballybeg area outside Ennis and also merchants (or shopkeepers!) in the town. They married among a group of families who were also merchants or reasonably large farmers though they don’t appear to have been among the landlord class. They appear both in the Tithes and in Griffiths Valuation as lessees.

In March 1792 the “Ennis Chronicle” reported the marriage of Christopher Gallery of Newhall to Miss Kenny, daughter of Mr Edmond Kenny of Dysert and the same paper reported the marriage in October of the same year of James Gallery, merchant to Miss Boland, daughter of the late Mr Denis Boland, tallow chandler. They may have been brothers, or cousins, but this hasn’t been proven yet. Mrs Gallery née Kenny died at Newhall in October 1805 (“Ennis Chronicle”) and Christopher himself died in March 1821 at Loughill (“Clare Journal”).

Christopher and Miss Kenny had six children that we know of:

  • Margaret married Francis Karney, Grocer in 1813, (“Clare Journal”)
  • Maria married James Davoren, probably the son of the Rev. Michael Davoren of Kilfenora on 8 June 1815 (“Clare Journal”).
  • Ellen married Anthony O’Dwyer of Annagh, a farmer, in March 1829, (“Ennis Chronicle”) from whom I am descended.
  • Of the three male children, two emigrated to Rochester in New York State and the youngest, Edward, stayed in Ireland and fathered an existing line of Gallerys who live in Clare, Ireland and abroad. As will be seen later, children of Margaret and Ellen, as well as Maria and her husband, also moved to Rochester.
    Francis Gallery 1795-1892

Francis Gallery

From “Rochester Union and Advertiser” Feb 26, 1892

Francis Gallery was the elder of the two brothers to go to the US, but it was the younger, James, who went first and took a farm on the Latta Road in Greece, a township just outside Rochester, on Lake Ontario, probably in the early 1830s. It was Francis’s journey that was recorded in his own obituary and, in more detail, in his son’s obituary:

“Mr. Gallery was born in Ennis, County Clare, Ireland, June 24, 1825, and came to America with his father [Francis] in 1833, landing at Quebec after a six weeks' voyage. The schooner on which he came on to Charlotte was pushed out of the St. Lawrence river by men walking on the banks and using long poles. The boat came up the Genesee river to Hanford's Landing, the only dock at that time.”
“Rochester (NY) Democrat & Chronicle” on December 10, 1908

Francis, married to Bridget Kelly, but assumed a widower, came out from Ireland with two children, Bridget and Michael aged 18 and 15, and according to his obituary he only intended to stay for two months, but he settled on his brother’s farm and lived there until he was 97. Again from Michael’s obituary:

“Soon after Mr. Gallery's arrival he bought fifty acres of land on the Latta road. He kept adding to this until he had 175 acres, one of the finest fruit farms in the county.”
“Rochester (NY) Democrat & Chronicle” on December 10, 1908

Francis’s own obituary describes him as
“A Man of Strict Integrity, Who Was Held in the Highest Esteem, (who) took a lively interest in politics and was a Democrat of the staunchest type.”
“Rochester Union and Advertiser”, Friday, February 26, 1892

There were a number of Irish families among the Greece community, some of whose biographies, including Michael Gallery’s, feature in “Landmarks of Monroe County, NY”

Michael himself married Mary Beattie from one of these families in 1843. They had 9 children, some of whom again married into this pool – Buckley, Whelehan, Cox, Fleming , mostly farmers, so the family remained close together. Catholicism was important to these families, and the first rural Catholic Church in New York State, Our Mother of Sorrows, was opened in Greece in 1832, of which Michael Gallery was a trustee at his death. In politics, the Gallerys were strongly Democrat.

Michael and Mary’s eldest child Frank B Gallery, born in 1844, attended Buffalo medical college from where he received his diploma. According to his obituary he
“was one of the most prominent of the younger class of physicians of this city and was earning for himself a high place in his chosen profession. He was also a member of the city board of health and was city physician for a long time.”

However he died August 29th 1885 at the age of 41
“Dr. Gallery’s death was occasioned by blood poisoning, contracted while performing an operation eleven years ago this month. During all these years he has been a victim of disease and has been gradually dying. About a year ago he went to Nassau, Bahama Islands, and passed the winter there.”
“Rochester Democrat and Chronicle”, Sunday, August 30, 1885

In 1872 Frank B Gallery married Eliza B. Buckley, daughter of another Irishman Keron Buckley who had come to Rochester in 1818 at the age of 6 and who
“for a number of years lived in the home of Colonel Rochester and was intimately associated with the city’s founder in the early history of this community. As a devout Catholic, he was instrumental in forming the first two Catholic church societies in this vicinity, the organizations that built St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Mother of Sorrows Church.”
“Rochester Democrat and Chronicle”, Monday December 1, 1930 (obit. of a sister of Eliza Buckley)

Like his father Frank was a staunch Democrat, and in the June prior to his death he had been appointed Consul at Kingston, Jamaica by President Cleveland. It is presumed that he did not take up the appointment. Frank and Eliza had three daughters, none of whom married but all had independent careers, kindergarten teacher, music teacher, stenographer, until retirement. They died in the 1960s in Rochester.

The only other son of Michael Gallery and Mary Beattie was James Mortimer who worked on the family farm. He married Sarah Kinsella in 1894 and they had six children. Michael sold the farm in 1903, as Rochester expanded into the rural area of Greece and subsequently Mortimer worked as an electrician.

James Gallery 1800-1866
If Francis Gallery could be said to represent the farming side of the Gallery family, then his brother James could be seen as the merchant of the family. I have not found any account of James’s journey out and it is not clear if he married before he came out. There is a marriage in April 1827 of a James Gallery of Ennis, Grocer and Wine Merchant, to Anne daughter of the late William Dwyer of Anna (“Ennis Chronicle”) and he has a wife called Anna in the 1850 US Census. All reports say he was in Greece before Francis arrived and had land on the Latta Road. He seems to have given / sold this land to Francis and moved into Rochester city to work in a more familiar area, if he were indeed the Ennis Grocer above. In the Rochester directories from 1838 he appears as Inn Keeper, Grocer, Land Agent, and from 1861 coal dealer. This final business seems to have made him quite wealthy. (Directories from Monroe County Library)

His wife Anna died in 1856. A daughter Anna M was born in 1835 and appears in the 1850 census, but not thereafter. In 1859 he marries a widow Eliza Doyle née Elliott who brings to the family two children and a mother aged 70 in the 1860 census. James and Eliza have one son, James Francis in 1860. James himself dies in 1866 aged 66.

Like his brother Francis, James appears to have been both a staunch Catholic and a civic minded member of his community. In 1854 he was named as one of the first trustees of the Roman Catholic Orphanage Society, “which had built a brick building three stories high for the reception of orphan children.” In 1847 and 1848 he was listed on the Board of Aldermen for Rochester City. “History of Rochester and Monroe County, New York, from the earliest historic times to the beginning of 1907” (

James was also an active member of a militia unit (the current equivalent would be the National Guard) that covered the Towns of Parma and Greece, suburbs of Rochester. In 1838 he is listed in Regimental Orders as Adjutant to the 239th Infantry of the Militia of the State of New York (“Rochester Republican” 28th May 1838) and is Colonel in the “Rochester Republican” of May 1839 where in a report on a general meeting of “The Adopted Citizens of the County of Monroe, N.Y.” Col. James Gallery is appointed Chairman. (They were concerned that in the event of war with Great Britain they would be treated as traitors by the British and not be able to avail of the same protection as native citizens).

He is also mentioned in the ‘New York Evening Post’ of 1853 where it reports that “There are two apples on exhibition at Rochester, belonging to Col. James Gallery, of enormous size. One is a pippin 15 ½ inches in circumference weighing 19 ounces. The other is a russet 11 ¾ inches in circumference, weighing 10 ounces.”

His large gravestone in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Rochester is clearly inscribed Col James Gallery. He was first buried in St. Patrick’s Cemetery 10 August 1866, and re-interred in Holy Sepulchre 3 May 1895. . This website explains the moves between the cemeteries and also gives the following details of James’s military record, taken from a list published in the “Rochester Union and Advertiser” May 30 1892.

GALLERY Col. James; 63 NY Vol.; d Aug. 13, 1866 aged 66; bur. Aug. 15; (from 1892 Veterans list)

However I have yet to find any record attaching him to the 63 NY Volunteers, or any other Civil War unit.

There is also something of a mystery in the life of James Francis Gallery, the only son of James and Eliza, who was only six years old when his father died. In 1882 he married Helen E Connor, daughter of John Connor and Matilda Chestnert and they had three children Charles, Laura and James Craig Gallery. In the 1900 census the family are together in Rochester, but in 1910 James Francis is not there and Eliza is listed as a widow. However by the 1920 census he is with the family again, and dies in Rochester in 1926. The following newspaper report only deepens the mystery:

“James F Gallery of Rochester, who went to California for the benefit of his health in 1906, and who was last heard from in San Francisco after the earthquake, when he wrote about being slightly injured, was formally declared dead by Surrogate Barhite of Rochester yesterday.”
“Batavia NY Daily News”, March 24 1916.

Is there anyone out there who knows the story?

Before he left Rochester James Francis had been running his father’s coal business, along with his half-brother Henry Doyle, who appears to have taken it over completely. James’s son Charles was also involved in a coal business at a later stage.

Related Families in the US
Col James Gallery’s success in business in Rochester seems to have encouraged some other related families to come to Rochester, though they all moved on to other parts of the US after some years.

James’s eldest sister Margaret married Francis Karney in 1813, as stated above. A daughter Ellen married Anthony Maloney in 1840 in Ennis, and had at least three sons, Francis Gallery (1841), Michael (1842) and Edward (1844) (Parish Records from Clare Heritage Centre). This family moved to Rochester in the mid-1850s, where Anthony is recorded in the Rochester Directory as a Grocer, though he died shortly thereafter. Ellen is listed with four of her children in the 1870 Census as living at Kent St. Rochester, two doors away from James Gallery’s widow Eliza and family. Ellen and two of her sons, Edward and Thomas, are buried in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Rochester, in a plot originally purchased by the Gallery family.

Francis Gallery Maloney became a member of the 54th Regiment of the New York State Militia in 1863, being elected Captain of the newly formed Company I, and 2nd Sergeant M.J. Maloney was most probably his brother Michael. A vivid description of the Regiment marching through Rochester on their way to entrain for the war can be found at written by a direct descendant of Francis Gallery Maloney. (Other information about this family also from this source). The unit served the remainder of 1864 as a guard unit at the Prisoner of War Camp in Elmira, NY. The 54th saw no actual fighting in the Civil War.

Francis returned safely from the war and married Sarah Lany Weed, whose German ancestors had been in the US since 1710, and English ancestors since 1630. Francis and Sarah moved to Michigan to farm where he died in 1872 aged only 32.

James’s sister Maria and her husband James Davoren, together with their youngest son James, appeared in the 1850 census in Rochester on the same page as James and Anna, where they had changed the spelling of their name to D’Avoren. In the Rochester Directory for 1851 James D’Avoren is listed as a Grocer two doors away from James Gallery’s grocery business. In his will of 1866 James left an annuity to Maria who was then a widow. James and Maria had three children at least, Lucius, Maria F and James. They must have come to Rochester early in the 1840s as Maria F married Roswell Wilmuth Underhill on January 31, 1844. According to the Underhill Genealogy ( he came from an extended family that had come to the US very early. He was born in Vermont in 1819 and according to the Genealogy was a contractor and builder as well as being one of the oldest members of the Old Light Guards (a group later incorporated into the National Guard). Maria F and Roswell had eight children, the eldest son being named James D’Avoren Underhill. They died in 1880 and 1903 respectively, and are buried in Mount Hope Cemetery in Rochester. (

Cornelius Kenny is listed in the 1850 census and the Rochester Directory as a Grocer in Rochester. His son of 8 at the time, also Cornelius, later becomes a Tea and Coffee Merchant in Baltimore. We have a letter from him in 1875 to a known relative in Ireland which connects him to the Kenny family already married to Gallerys.

Finally, James Gallery O’Dwyer, second son of James Gallery’s sister Ellen who married Anthony O’Dwyer of Annagh, came out to the US in 1849 at the age of 16. The family story had been that he went out to a rich uncle, and there are census records showing him in Rochester in 1850 and then Palmyra in 1860. Subsequently he moved to Jackson in Michigan, married and had a large family, became a successful merchant, brought out two of his sisters and died the owner of a substantial house on Wildwood Avenue.

Edward Gallery 1805-1875
Edward, (sometimes Edmond), the youngest of the children of Christopher and Miss Kenny, born in 1805 according to his death certificate, stayed in Ireland and took on both the land and business in and around Ennis. In the Tithe Applotment Books for 1833 he is listed at Drumbiggil, Killone and Strawsborough, Killone ( In Griffith’s Valuation in 1855 he is listed at Ballybeg (renamed from Killone?), and also at Ballynabinnia in the parish of Kilnamona and at Doonogan in the parish of Kilmurry Ibrickan (
In July 1835 he is advertising in the “Clare Journal” that “he is just unpacking a few cases of rare and select wine” and that he “has made a reduction on the price of TEAS … from the East India Company” at his business in Jail St. in Ennis.

On 26 November 1835 Edward married Ellen Kenny, youngest daughter of the late Mr David Kenny of Termanagh, another example of Gallerys marrying into families of similar standing as their own. (Her relationship, if any, to Miss Kenny her mother-in-law has not yet been determined). They had two sons, Christopher born in 1836 and David F. born in 1843. (All “Clare Journal”) There may have been other children that we haven’t found yet. Ellen died in 1874 and Edward in 1875, both at Ballybeg, Ennis.

Like his brothers in Rochester, Edward was also an involved member of the social and political fabric of his community, and was known as “Honest Ned”. He was elected to the Workhouse Board of Guardians in Ennis in the Poor Law Elections of 1839 and 1841 (Sheedy, Kieran “Clare Elections”) and from the same source he is “among a meeting addressed by John D. Fitzgerald, a Catholic barrister. (CJ 28 Dec 1849)”. He is also listed among the Galway and Ennis Grand Junction Railway Petitioners in 1845.

The eldest son Christopher married Maria Lynch of Barntick, Clareabbey in 1877. At some stage they moved to the farm at Doonogan which had been bought for him by his father, both appearing there in the 1901 census and Maria in the 1911 census. Christopher died 27 October 1907 (National Archives of Ireland, Wills & Administrations Books). No official record of Maria’s death has been found, and the couple were childless. This farm is still in the Gallery family

David F Gallery married Mary R. Taaffe (Minnie) also in 1877. They had ten children at Ballybeg, two of whom emigrated to the US and some of the remaining married locally, continuing the family tradition of involvement in both farming and business. Descendants of these families are alive, in Ireland, and elsewhere. David and Mary’s eldest son Edward joined the British Army in 1897, probably with the encouragement of his cousin General Sir Thomas Kelly Kenny who was a significant figure in the Army at that time. . Edward fought as a Gunner in the Royal Field Artillery in the Boer War and died 23 May 1900 of typhoid at Thaba Nchu, Orange Free State, South Africa. His name is on the Royal Artillery Memorial in St. James's Park, The Mall, London, England. (

David, who died in 1909, Mary, who died in 1923 and some of their children are buried in the beautiful graveyard at Killone Abbey, close by the lake, a couple of miles outside Ennis.

Killone Abbey Graveyard, Ennis, Co.Clare
Killone Abbey Graveyard, Ennis, Co.Clare

Descendants of Christopher GALLERY

1 - Christopher GALLERY d. 1821 m Miss KENNY 1792
  2 – Margaret GALLERY b. abt 1793 m Francis KARNEY
    3 – Ellen KARNEY m Anthony MALONEY
      4 – Francis Gallery MALONEY
  2 – Ellen GALLERY b. abt. 1794 m Anthony O’DWYER
2 – Maria GALLERY 1795 -1874 m James DAVOREN
    3 – Maria F DAVOREN m Roswell Wilmuth UNDERHILL
3 – James DAVOREN
  2 – Francis GALLERY 1795 – 1892 m Bridget KELLY
    3 – Bridget GALLERY 1822 – 1908 m HOGAN
3 – Michael GALLERY 1825 – 1908 m Mary BEATTIE
      4 – Francis B. GALLERY 1844 – 1885 m Elizabeth R. BUCKLEY
4 – Mary A. GALLERY 1846 – 1913 m William WHELEHAN
4 – Martin GALLERY 1849 –
4 – Elizabeth R. GALLERY 1852 – 1893 m Hamlin
4 – Bridget Gertrude GALLERY 1855 -1932 m Patrick COX
4 – Anne M. GALLERY 1857 – m FLEMING
4 – Emma Josephine GALLERY 1859 – 1900
4 – Effie V. GALLERY 1864 – 1949 m Thomas SLATER
4 – James Mortimer GALLERY 1866 – 1928 m Sarah E. KINSELLA
  2 – James GALLERY 1801 – 1866 m (1) Anna (2) Eliza DOYLE née ELLIOTT
    3 – Anna GALLERY 1835 -
3 – James Francis GALLERY 1860 – 1926 m Helen E. CONNOR
  2 – Edward GALLERY 1805 – 1875 m Ellen KENNY
3 – Christopher GALLERY 1836 – m Maria LYNCH
3 – David F. GALLERY 1841 – 1909 m Mary R. TAAFFE


Local Studies Centre, Ennis.
National Library of Ireland
Monroe County Library System Both Search and Browse facility

Monroe County Library System

Land Records
Tithe Applotment –
Griffiths Valuation – (among others)
Thanks to Paddy Waldron, Declan Barron and Eric Shaw for their input and advice into this paper.
Finally, huge thanks to Margaret Gallery, my collaborator on this paper, for all the shared research into re-discovering this family.

Back Arrow
Family Histories