Email Stories



*ome of the E-mails received included interesting stories people had collected about their Kinsella ancestors. We believe you’ll find them interesting.


Dear Mr. Kinsella,
I found your homepage on the web and am in hopes that you will have knowledge that may lead to information about a very old pepper shaker that has been in my husband's family several generations, I believe.

The pepper shaker is glass, 4" in height, black dome cap made of a hard plastic like material, with the Kinsella Coat of Arms on the glass body as well as the word "KINSELLA". Under "KINSELLA" is the date 1874. On the bottom of the shaker is imprinted "design pat pending".

My husband's family came to the U.S. from Germany in the 1880s. Family name is Sandersfeld. I would very much appreciate a response from you.
Sherryl Sandersfeld

[Two years ago we received a Kinsella genealogy from William North of St.Louis. He said his Kinsella family had operated a coffee and spice company from 1874 until 1957. He was kind enough to send us a mason jar made by that company. It contained the logo, "Kinsella 1874." Probably, the pepper shaker that Sherryl Sanderfeld has was made by the same company.]


My curiosity is getting the better of me. Do you know if Esther Burns (m. John Kinsella 1780) was related to "The" Robert Burns? One of my father's stories was about being related to the poet laureate. That name, Esther Burns, is yet another curious connection between my families, Kinsella and Critchley. James Critchley and Esther Burns were married about 1848 in Ireland. They are my GGgrandparents. I had presumed (big mistake) that this Esther Burns was our "connection" to Robert Burns. Imagine my surprise when I first looked at your information!
Mary E.Stewart


This note results from my browsing in the Internet among references to Mountmellick, Ireland. My line of Malones in the U. S. seems to have originated in the vicinity of that town. It seems possible we have a Kinsella among our forebears from there and I wonder if you could throw any light on this.

Letters and other material kept in a family Bible indicate our first ancestor to reach the U. S. from Ireland was James Malone (1769-1842). This man, my great-great-great grandfather, seems to have arrived in New York City from the Mountmellick (Co. Laois) vicinity in 1815-16 and again in 1826-27 after a few years back in Ireland.

Letters by James mention his wife but not by name. However, a Ned Kinselogh and a Peter Kinselogh are named in the letters and it appears these individuals were quite familiar to James and to his son Luke in America, to whom the letters were sent. An informant in Ireland told me the wife's maiden name probably was Kinselogh or Kinsella. There are Kinsellas buried near Mountmellick, I believe.

Each of the Kinselogh-relevant letters went from Ireland to America addressed to Luke, son of James and husband of Sally. Each was concerned with emigration, mainly, and had something to say about conditions in Ireland. I am supplying short excerpts here.

[Letter one had only a small amount of information and much of it was illegible]

LETTER TWO was written by Sally, almost certainly a Kinselogh by birth. Unfortunately Sally's letter is especially faded and hard to transcribe. What follows simply approximates what she wrote and may be misleading in places. It was sent from "Mt. Mellick" under the date October 25(?), 1825:

My Dear Luke -- We received your letter on the 15th of the above month. And I need not tell you what pleasure it has given us for which we return you our most grateful thanks and above all to our good God for having preserved you amidst so many thousands who have been called to eternity without I suppose knowing from what cause [refers to an epidemic in New York City?]. You have my dear deceived many in their opinion of you but not our near friends.

My dear Luke, if your father or any of his family was to go, what would we do with the children? As for me I am willing to go at any time that you wish for me. All that I have to regret in going is to think of leaving the children. After more thought I am conscious of them being as well taken care of... as if we were over them ourselves.

Your father was speaking of taking a bed with him... I have one [?] if you think it would be unfavourable [?] to do it. So send extra money and to let [?] me also... would you approve of me bringing linen or any kind of wearables for yourself. That's if you have the means of so doing. Edward [Sally's brother, Ned Kinselogh?] is not disposed to go to America at present but wishes to know at what kind of labor he could earn a dollar... As for William and Ann, they are very well disposed to go had they but the means. And if you could advance a little money without disrupting [?] yourself he would return it most thankfully when they'd arrive with you there. With regard to the broadcloth do let William know what a man could earn... day or per week.

With regard to the town of Mt. Mellick, it is in a very convulsed state since the 12th of last July. There is not a part of Ireland that I believe... the report of it has not reached. And all [?] bears nothing but the aspect of disunion and discontent and more. And then the whole cause of this can be attributed to nothing but keeping up an orange pole in despite of all the efforts that can be made to remove... And now the clergy in general have taken this plan with them, which is they are about to stop all dealing... with regard to either buying or selling.

Your mother sends her blessing and most grateful thanks for having remembered her in your letter. I conclude speaking plurally as to speak otherwise would... as all our hearts and love to you are equally the same by wishing you all blessings spiritual and temporal.

Your most affectionate wife Sarah Malone, and loving John Gaugh...

LETTER THREE was posted from Barrownass, apparently a rural neighborhood or townland a couple of miles north of Mount- mellick, inside Co. Offaly, now called The Borness. The date was March 4, 1826:

Neither Ned or Peter Kinselogh will go to America...

I wish you had written something more of Sally in your last, I would have you write to her. There is a jealousie and she is in need of being consoled. Your son John is the most troublesome child was ever reared--a perfect prodigy of wickedness. P. Kinselogh takes his wife to live in Mt. Mellick in this month and then the entire business of the house is on Sally. I may say it is so always.


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