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McClelland of Glasnevin & Henry Street, Dublin

By her marriage in 1905 to John Craigie, Florence Miriam McClelland (1881- 1962), above, was grandmother to Miriam Craigie (my mother-in-law) and thus the great-great grandmother to our daughters. (Photo courtesy of Roy Craigie.)

NB McClelland is variously spelled McCleland, Clelland and MacClelland; newspaper cuttings in my McClelland file have not yet been transcribed into this document.


Joseph McClelland (c. 1815-1880)


Florence’s grandfather Joseph McClelland was born about 1815. We don’t yet know his wife’s name or how many other children he had. At the time of his son Moses’ marriage in 1859, he was a wine merchant. He may have lived at 3 Villa Park, Royal Canal, Dublin, the address Moses gave at the time of the marriage. Joseph died in Glasnevin on 6 Jan 1880.


Moses McClelland (1836-1887) & Jane Elizabeth Cooke (1841-1891)


Florence’s father Moses William McClelland (1836-1887), son of Joseph, was born in Glasnevin in 1836. On 3 November 1859, the 23-year-old was married in Glasnevin Church to Jane Elizabeth Cooke (1841-1891), the 18-year-old daughter of grocer Edward Cooke and his wife Ellen.

It seems likely that Ellen Cooke was a member of the Cantrell family, possibly a daughter of Glasnevin shopkeeper Joshua Cantrell who was operating as a ‘provision dealer’ in Glasnevin from at least 1846 when Slater’s National Commercial Directory of Ireland was published. His business was described in the Irish Valuation Office Books of 1846 as ‘a little grocery shop, but no business of any consequence done here.’ His wife may have been Eliza Hamilton. If Ellen was Joshua’s daughter, then she may well have been a sister to Maria Cantrell who, married in 1864, gave her address at the time as “Glasnevin Post Office” and listed her father as Joshua Cantrell, with Joshua S Cantrell as a witness. It is plausible that Maria was residing with her niece Jane (aka the wife of Moses McClelland, Postmaster in Glasnevin from at least 1865) at the time of her marriage.

Ellen was also probably a sister of the Naas-based pawnbroker Joshua Simmonds Cantrell (c. 1825-1904), who stood as witness to so many family members. The Cork Examiner (4 March 1865) recorded the marriage on 28 February 1865 ‘at St David’s Church, Naas, by the Rev. M. [Maurice] T. De Burgh, vicar, assisted by the Rev. R. W. Buckley, [of] Joshua Simmonds Cantrell Esq., to Saria, eldest daughter of the late Mr James Tracy of Naas.’

The marriage record shows that James Tracy was a Clerk of Petty Sessions and also lists the two witnesses as a John Wilson Simmonds and a William Clelland (aka McClelland) who may have been a brother of Moses. Joshua Simmonds Cantrell was town commissioner in Naas and a member of the Naas Young Men’s Christian Association. In 1879, he was elected people’s churchwarden at St David’s, with the Baron de Robeck as the rector’s churchwarden. He died at his Naas residence on 7 May 1904 and was survived by his wife, whose name was spelled Sarah in a death notice published in the Kildare Observer. [1] They are both listed in the 1901 census, living on Main Street West, Naas, with two teenage pawnbroker assistants (Robert McKeon and Edward Power) and a 23-year-old maidservant, Margaret Maher. Sarah B Cantrell, aged 60 on the 1901 census, does not appear on the 1911 census.

Jane Elizabeth Cooke was born in 1841 and is believed to have had a brother Cantrell Cooke who married a Miss Tracy. [??] The witnesses were Joshua S Cantrell (for Moses) and John Wantyn (for Jane Elizabeth).

At the time of his marriage, Moses was a draper based at 15 Henry Street, Dublin, with Cannock, White, & Co, general drapers and house furnishers, and importers of Berlin wool and embroidery. Founded by George Cannock and Andrew White, the drapery initially opened for business at 14 Henry Street in 1843. Two years later, a £6000 loan from the bankers Andrew and Patrick Reid enabled them to expand into No. 13, while a further £6000 investment from the Scottish entrepreneur Sir John Arnott after White’s death in 1848 ensured that, by 1862, their premises encompassed as 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15 Henry Street. [2]

In 1865, just as Moses began working at the Glasnevin Post Office, George Cannock departed the company in 1865. The Reids subsequently allowed Arnott, a former British MP, three-time mayor of Cork and a former owner of The Irish Times, to give his name to the company. In 1875, Arnott & Co was floated as a public limited company.

At the time of his first daughter Elizabeth’s birth in August 1860, Moses was living at 3 Villa Park on the Royal Canal and he was again recorded as a draper. (He was described as a linen draper when his son Joseph was baptised in April 1863).

From at least May 1865 (when his son Moses was baptised) until at least 1883 (when his daughter Elizabeth Jane was married), Moses was Post Master in Glasnevin. He was also a church warden there in 1879. He died at Beechmount House, Glasnevin, on 10 June 1887, aged 54. (Cork Constitution, 14 June 1887). His widow Jane McClelland died in Glasnevin on 16 March 1891, aged 50.

Prior to her death, Jane was a ‘Licensed Grocer and Provision Merchant’ in Glasnevin and it seems likely this was her father’s business. After her death, the grocery was taken on by her second and third daughters, Sarah and Rachel McClelland, who were still running the business in June 1898 when all outstanding creditors were invited by the Chancery Division of the High Court to send in their claims. [3]


The Children of Moses and Jane McClelland


Moses William and Jane McClelland had the following children:

  1. Elizabeth Jane McClelland was born on 24 Aug 1860 in 3 Villa Park, Royal Canal, Dublin, at which time her father was described as a draper. She was and baptised in Glasnevin Church on 7 October 1860. She married Thomas Devonport Henry Hunt of 21 Lower Gardiner Street on 7 Nov 1883 in Glasnevin Church. He was a Clerk in Gen. Post Office in Dublin. His father Thomas Hunt was a Clerk in a Government Office, while Elizabeth’s father Moses was at this time the Post Master in Glasnevin. Both bride and groom were of ‘full’ age. Moses W McClelland was witness for the husband while Joshua S Cantrell was witness for the wife.
  2. Joseph William McClelland was born on 6 Feb 1863 and baptised in Glasnevin Church on 5 April. Joseph and his brother Joshua went to Australia to work on a sugar plantation in Cairns. He died in Sydney on 17 August 1899, aged 35. (Dublin Daily Nation, 27 September 1899, p. 1.)
  3. Moses Edward McClelland was born on 24 Mar 1865 and baptised in Glasnevin Church on 21 May 185. He died aged 8 and was buried in Glasnevin on 21 Apr 1873.
  4. Sarah Anne McClelland was born on 5 Apr 1867 and baptised in Glasnevin Church on 23 June 1867. She married Henry Hay Muirhead, a Commercial Clerk, living at 9 Lockhead Road, Leith, Scotland, on 25 Apr 1894 in Glasnevin Church. That serial witness Joshua S Cantrell stood for Henry while Robert McClelland (her younger brother perhaps?) was witness for Sarah Anne. At the time of their wedding she lived at Beechmount, Glasnevin, while her father was recorded as a Commission Agent. Henry was born on 15 Jun 1868 in Pencaitland, East Lothian, Scotland, a son of farmer James Muirhead.
  5. Joshua Simmonds McClelland was born on 17 Sep 1868 and baptized in Glasnevin Church on 18 October 1868. Joshua accompanied his older brotehr Joseph to Australia to work on a sugar plantation in Cairns. He married Mary Agnes Aloysia Bolger on 27 Feb 1892 in St Patrick’s Cathedral, Melbourne; she was born on 12 Sep 1867 in Banana Pocket, Queensland. Joshua died on 30 Dec 1926 in Caulfield, Victoria, Australia; his wife survived him until 16 Sep 1934 and died in Fitzroy, Victoria, Australia. Andrew Craigie has photos of some of these and their descendants.
  6. Rachel Eleanor Ellen McClelland was born on 27 Aug 1870 and baptized in Glasnevin Church on 9 October 1870. She married Joseph Edward Highton on 26 Jan 1898 in Glasnevin Church. He was born in Sep 1873 in Kings Langley, Hertfordshire, England, the son of a schoolteacher. Joshua S Cantrell was witness for Mr Highton while Rachel’s younger brother Moses was her witness. She died in Jun 1927 in Barrow-in-Furness, Lancashire, England (Age: 57)
  7. Robert Henry McClelland was born on 20 Feb 1873 and baptized in Glasnevin Church on 14 April.
  8. Moses William McClelland was born on 25 Aug 1878 and baptized in Glasnevin Church on 12 November 1878. He died on 26 Apr 1902 in Windermire, Glasnevin.
  9. Alice Maud McClelland was baptized in Glasnevin Church on 28 Dec 1879 in Glasnevin. She died in Beechmount as an eight-month-old baby and was buried on 29 Aug 1880 in Glasnevin.
  10. Florence Miriam McClelland (1881- 1962) was born on 29 Oct 1881 in Beechmount, Glasnevin. Co Dublin, and baptized in Glasnevin Church on 4 June 1882. On 29 August 1905, aged 24 (23?), she married John Craigie, second son of George W. Craigie of Merville, Glasnevin. They were married in Glasnevin Parish Church by the Rev R. B. Brown, BD. (Weekly Irish Times, 9 September 1905, p. 1). John and Florence lived at St Helena, Finglas. (John Craigie was born on 16 Mar 1875 in North Dublin and died on 28 Mar 1958 in St Helena.) Florence died on 6 Oct 1962, also in St Helena. She was grandmother to Miriam Moore / Craigie (my mother-in-law) and thus the great-great grandmother to my daughters.
  11. Lily McClelland.


With thanks to Andrew Craigie and Maria O’Brien.




[1] Kildare Observer and Eastern Counties Advertiser, 14 May 1904. (CANTRELL—May 7, at his residence, Naas. Joshua Simmonds Cantrell, the beloved husband of Sarah Cantrell, aged 79 years “Peace, perfect peace.”)

[2] Dublin Street Directory, 1862.



PURSUANT to an order of the Chancery Division of the High Court of Justice, Ireland, in the matter of the Estate of Jane McClelland, late of Glasnevin, in the County of Dublin, Widow, Deceased.


WILLIAM M’CLELLAND and Another. Defendant.

All persons having claims as creditors against the business of the said late Jane M’Clelland, as Licensed Grocer and Provision Merchant, at Glasnevin, in the county Dublin, in respect of the trading carried thereon by Sarah M’Clelland and Rachel M’Clelland since the 16th day of March, 1891, are, on or before the 18th day of June, 1898, to send by post, prepaid, to Messrs Brown and M’Cann, 5 College green, in the city of Dublin, the Solicitors of the Plaintiff, the Executor of the deceased, their Christian and surnames, addresses and descriptions, the full particulars of their claims, a statement of their accounts, the nature their securities (if any) held by them, or in default thereof they will be peremptorily excluded from the benefit of the said order. Every creditor holding any security is to produce the same before the Right Honourable the Master of the Rolls at his Chambers, Four Courts, Dublin, on the 1st day of July, 1898, at 11 o’clock in the forenoon, being the time appointed for adjudicating on the claims.

Dated this 16th day May, 1898.


BROWN and M’CANN, Solicitors for the Plaintiff, 5 College green, Dublin.

(Irish Independent – Saturday 28 May 1898)