A book, long and mournful, could be written on emigration from Leitrim. A phenomenon that was already known before the Famine became a normal event in the story of most families thereafter. Nicholas Doyle had four children; two of them cannot be found among Irish death or marriage records. Did they emigrate? Unfortunately the quality of the information retained on US Immigration records of the 19th Century is insufficient to enable us pinpoint two such common names as John and Ellen Doyle but that they did both emigrate is a definite possibility.

Both of Nicholas' two children who remained in Ireland married and had families. Mary Doyle and her husband had 5 children who survived infancy. All five emigrated to the U.S.A.

Edward Doyle married Elizabeth Reynolds and had seven children with her, four of whom emigrated. And of Edward's children who remained in Ireland, John had seven children who survived infancy and 3 of them emigrated. With the exception of Michael (Mikey) Doyle, John's son, who went to England, all of the emigrants went to the United States.

The first to go seems to have been Ellen Nicholl. Her immigration record was hard to find and indeed the record that was found cannot be definitively stated to be hers. But she seems to have left Ireland in 1904, aged just 21. She gave as the name of the person she was visiting a cousin M Cullen. No linkage of Cullens to the Clooncarne Doyles has been found so it seems this relationship must have been on the Nicholl side, but no evidence of it has been found either. Later that same year, her sister Bridget, then aged 18, followed her, giving Ellen as the name of the person she was going to visit.

Rose Nicholl, at the age of 15, left Ireland in October 1906, again giving Ellen as the person with whom she was going to stay in New York. In 1909 James Nicholl, aged 20, emigrated to New York, and he too gave his sister Ellen as the person with whom he was going to stay. She had married Michael Gray, an Irishman, possibly from Co Meath, in 1906. Around 1911, James married in New York, to Elizabeth McFadden, a Donegal woman.

The first of Edward Doyle's children to go was Edward junior, who left for New York in September 1910, citing James Nicholl as the person with whom he would stay. He was 22 when he emigrated. In May 1911 his brother Michael Joseph, followed, naming Edward as his host in America. Michael Joseph was just 19 when he left; he had worked as  barman in Mohill prior to his departure, a trade he would follow in New York.

The youngest of the Nicholls, Patrick, was the last of the family to emigrate. It appears as if he may have made some attempt to stay in Ireland. The 1911 Census shows him, aged 17, as a servant in the household of John Doyle of Laheen South. Again, this is yet another indication of relationship between the Doyles of Clooncarne and Laheen South, but that is another story. He arrived in America in August 1912, to stay with his brother James Nicholl.

Mary Ann Doyle, the only one of Edward's daughters to emigrate, arrived in New York, to stay with Edward junior, in May 1913. She was aged 23 at the time. The final emigration of this generation was that of Bernard Doyle, who at the age of 24, went to stay with his brother Michael in April 1921.


The subsequent stories of the emigrant families are not hugely known. Thanks to the aid of Tim Gatins, a grandson of James Nicholl, we have an overview of the descendants of the various Nicholl siblings, and these can be seen on the charts and journals in this study.

At the point of writing, we also have only an overview of the fates and descendants of the various Doyle emigrants. Mary Anne is said to have died following a street accident in the 1940s; she never married. The three boys married but it seems that only Michael Joseph had children and it is not known if any of these had offspring. Edward has thus far evaded scrutiny and has not been traced after 1920.


More is known of the emigrants of the next generation but and their details will be found in the persons' section of this site.