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Descendants of William de Irwyn ?- my family mystery

#1
Good day,

First off I am a newbie so please excuse my ignorance.

My maternal aunt and uncles in Canada are Irvines. My late maternal Grandfather, Andrew Irvine and our relations in Scotland have told me many times that our family is descended from William de Irwyn of Drum Castle. They cannot point me to anything more specific, just a tale that he was the Arms bearer for Richard III. I think William de Irwyn was actually arms bearer for Robert the Bruce but the tale has become a bit twisted and the family seems to like Richard the Lionhearted better.

I am not convinced for a number of reasons, most importantly because of a lack of any kind of a paper trail. Secondly, because on his deathbed my Grandfather, who was born in Scotland, said his father was from Ireland. I think he wanted to paint a glorious family history of royal ancestors rather than one of poverty in Ireland. Rather than debate my uncles any more, I would like to clear this up once and for all.

Despite my doubts I am ready to start looking backwards and see if we are connected to William de Irwyn. If I can find just one connection to a well known ancestor in William de Irwyn's line, the rest is easy. But I am doubtful this will happen.

The biggest challenge in my mind is the scarcity of records. One tantelizing clue was that I read somewhere online that there was a branch of William de Irwyn's family who ended up in Londonderry. Londonderry is where my G Grandfather was from.

Here is my maternal grandfather's line as far as I can research so far:

1. Andrew Douglas IRVINE born 1919 in Dumbartonshire Scotland. He had a brother named Alexander Irvine b. 1914 in Dumbarton. For both brothers I have their birth marriage and death certificates.

2. William John IRWIN born 1879 in Limavady, Londonderry Ireland. He married Agnes Higgens. Their children were Andrew Douglas Irvine, Alexander Irvine and Margaret Rose Irvine. To assimilate they seem to have slightly changed their name from Irwin to Irvine. I have his birth marriage and death records. It is here that reliable records seem to have run out. From William John's birth record I know his parents names.

3. Father of William John Irwin is a man named John Irwin (the 2nd). My Aunt in Scotland told me he married a woman named Mary Jane Caldwell and I found a Church Record from Co. Derry dated 1871 that has these two names - also verified with William Johns birth record. There was only one result with these two names in the search for Irish church records (Roots Ireland) but I cannot be certain it is my GG Grandfather John Irwin (the 2nd). If it is him, he would have been born about 1851. I am certain that he and his wife had 3 kids. William John Irwin, Mary Jane Irwin b. 1877 and Margaret Elizabeth Irwin born 1872. Unfortunately the Roots Ireland website record does not name John Irwin's (the 2nds) father.

4. Possible father of John Irwin (the 2nd) is another man named John Irwin (the 1st) b. about 1824. Here I have no solid records other than some census data and a record that indicates he may have married a Labina Forsythe (and a letter from the Kinsella's in Canada). He and Labina had a number of Children including Matilda Jane Irwin who married a Robert Kinsella and moved to Brockville Canada (last contact with these people 1919), Elizabeth Irwin b. 1851, Robert Irwin, Margaret Irwin, and Samuel Irwin as well as John Irwin (the 2nd).

I am at a brick wall and need some help. If you have read this far thank you and I would welcome any suggestions. I realize I have a monumental task ahead of me that may well be impossible due to lack of records. I do have a male Irvine/Irwin's DNA results so if any of you have a documented relationship to William de Irwyn the Laird of Drum and wish to share your DNA markers that may be helpful.
 
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