Need suggestion on finding families

For anybody that is searching for family links in the area covered by Ballymena area.

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Ken Ray
Oak Branch
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Joined: 16 Mar 2006, 03:08
6 divided by 2 is the answer: 5
Location: Dunedin, Florida

Need suggestion on finding families

Post by Ken Ray » 25 Jan 2009, 01:36

In the 1860 Griffiths Valuation there were 5 Rea families that lived next to each other in a small farming community called Ballydonnelly, Rasharkin Parish, Antrim. One of those 5 Rea's was my gr, gr grandfather, Charles Rea. I cannot find any record of him after this valuation. I also cannot find any common relationship between these 5 Rea's. I was wondering if there is any set of records that could help me find the relationship among these Rea's? I have tried church records, census and anything else I could find without success. No record at all of what became of Charles Rea.

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Re: Need suggestion on finding families

Post by irishgen » 25 Jan 2009, 04:06

Hi Ken,

Nothing to report on your elusive family member but reading your post on another forum it is important to realise that Ballydonnelly is not a town but a townland. The basic topographical units are townlands, the smallest land denomination in Ireland, for rural areas. You have the Townland - Ballydonnelly , then the Parish of Rasharkin, Electoral Division - Killoquin Upper, County of Antrim, Province of Ulster.

The "Rasharkin Parish" as you refer to it is really the "PARISH OF RASHARKIN" and consists of the following townlands.



Anticur - Culmore - Glebe - Lisnagaver - Ballydonnelly - Dreen - Glenbuck - Magheraboy -
Ballymaconnelly - Dromore - Gortahar - Moneyleck - Bellaghy - Drumack - Gortereghy - Tamlaght - Carclunty - Drumcon - Granagh - Tehorny - Carnfinton - Duneany - Killycowan - Church Tamlaght - Dunminning - Killycreen - Crushybracken - Fernagh - Killydonnelly

A townland can be small or large in size and any shape under the sun. The only thing you can be sure of is that each townland borders on at least one other in the "PARISH OF RASHARKIN" but usually more. Also those along the borders of the "PARISH OF RASHARKIN" touch the townlands belonging to the bordering Parishes.

Of course this may already be known to you but I am assuming that many do not know how the land in Ireland was spilt up. Not knowing the exact location of the townland of Ballydonnelly in relation to other the townlands of the "PARISH OF RASHARKIN" or the townlands of the neighbouring Parishes it is highly possible that they may have moved to another townland or Parishes in the general area.

In the 1911 Census you will find 2 families in Killoquin Upper

Surname Forename Townland/Street DED County Age Sex
Rea James - Drumcon Killoquin, Upper Antrim 61 M
Rea Jane - Drumcon Killoquin, Upper Antrim 63 F
Rea Cathrine - Drumcon Killoquin, Upper Antrim 18 F ... 001389990/

Rea Thomas Ballydonnelly Killoquin, Upper Antrim 58 M
Rea Jane Ballydonnelly Killoquin, Upper Antrim 46 F
Rea William Ballydonnelly Killoquin, Upper Antrim 20 M
Rea Joseph Ballydonnelly Killoquin, Upper Antrim 17 M
Rea Hugh A Ballydonnelly Killoquin, Upper Antrim 16 M
Rea George Ballydonnelly Killoquin, Upper Antrim 10 M
Rea James J ? Ballydonnelly Killoquin, Upper Antrim 9 M. ... 001389759/

You also did not mention the most important thing that another researcher needs when researching for another person and that is the RELIGION. This determines what church records will be of interest. The above 2 families have given on their census forms that their religion was Presbyterian. If your branch of the Rea's were also Presbyterian they could be family otherwise you can discard this line of research.

You may find his death using the site at:- ... searchable

Hope this is of interest,


Ken Ray
Oak Branch
Posts: 12
Joined: 16 Mar 2006, 03:08
6 divided by 2 is the answer: 5
Location: Dunedin, Florida

Re: Need suggestion on finding families

Post by Ken Ray » 25 Jan 2009, 18:40

Hi "Irishgen",

Thank you for your advice and direction I will certainly use what you have provided. All the relatives were Presbyterians.


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