Recently, I was honoured to be given the task of tracing Tom Crean’s ancestors, by Aileen O’Brien d’Arcy – Tom’s Granddaughter. Aileen a brilliant professional chef runs the well known Tom Crean Fish & Wine , an Award wining Townhouse & Restaurant in Kenmare. As well as providing customers with delicious locally sourced food, Aileen is very involved with preserving the rich heritage surrounding her Grandfather’s life.
My main achievement in the research was finding the exact date of birth for Tom Crean. All current books, websites and even the Kerry County Museum say that Tom was born on 20 July 1877. We can see from a copy of his birth certificate below that he was born on the 25th February 1877.
Tom Crean, famous Antarctic explorer, was born at home on the family farm at Gortacurrane, Annascaul on 25th February 1877. His birth was not registered until 11th March at Superintendent Register’s Office in Dingle. Although it was compulsory to register all births from 1864 onwards, all births were not recorded, particularly in the early years and some were recorded a number of months later. In the case of Annascaul births, it would have been a day’s trek to Dingle over bad unmade roads to get to the registration office, but all of the Crean children have been registered as below.
Tom was the seventh child of Patrick Crean and Catherine (Kate) Courtney. The other children of the family were:
|1867 7 Nov||Hugh, Gortcurrane [Farm]||Hugh Crean/Mary Connell|
|1869 6 Mar||Mary, Gortacurrane||Cornelius Currane/Johanna Crean|
|1870 14 June||John, Ballinknockane||Hugh Crean/Mary Courtney|
|1871 27 Sept||Cornelius, Gortacurrane [ RIC]m. Annie Donovan later murdered||Hugh Crean/Mary Connell|
|1873 13 Mar||Daniel, Gortacurrane [Farm]||John Cournane/Johanna Cournane|
|1875 24 Mar||Patrick,||n/a|
|1877 25 Feb||Thomas||n/a|
|1875 ?||Johanna, Gortacurrane [Says 1877 on Genealogy]||John Cournane/Ellen Moriarty|
|1887 28 Aug||Catherine m. Policeman||NR/Catherine Courtney|
|1879 14 Mar||Michael [Went to sea & was lost]||*On Ancestry, didn’t find on Genealogy|
Tom’s parents were Patrick Crean and Catherine (Kate) Courtney, who were married in Annascaul Parish Church on 28th February 1867. I have researched and reported to Aileen on Patrick Crean’s and Catherine Courtney’s ancestors also, their land holdings in Aunascaul and Castlegregory . If any of my readers are interested in following up possible family links in this area, please contact me by email.(on website).