Probably the biggest confirmed skeleton is a previously unknown second cousin of my dad's. Not completely confirmed but it appears that my great grandmother's wealthy brother had a child outside his marriage. He never had any children with his own wife. I haven't confirmed this one and I probably never will but a great uncle or a cousin of my dad had a child who we never knew of. The child had believed incorrectly through rumours that the father was a priest. All through DNA tests.
I found out that my great grandparents only married two months before the birth of their first child. I found ancestors in the petty court records but mostly for stuff that isn't very dramatic like animals trespassing, animals killed by dogs, unpaid dog licence, not paying money owed, inefficient windscreen wipers, no light on vehicle, etc. Assault, threatening language and abuse sounds dramatic but there are no details surrounding it for most. My 3x great grandfather had his leg broken in an assault. My 2x great grandfather spent 14 days of hard labour in prison for assault. Not a skeleton in the closet but my 2x great grandfather was assaulted and robbed. His father brought a man to court for burying a corpse in his private burial ground (there's the skeleton!). My 1st cousin 3x removed was summoned to court for dangerous driving in an uninsured car. I learned that my great uncle died of strychnine poisoning. My great grandfather was sued for possession of someone's money but it was dismissed. My great grandfather's sister was left most of a millionaire's fortune without his knowledge that she was secretly married. I learned that my great grandmother's brother-in-law died aged 53 in a mental hospital from melancholic exhaustion which was sad to read. They gave him a lovely obituary.
My great grandfather sued a neighbour for the trespass of sheep and assault. He confronted the family and they told him to clear away to hell, called him a bloody w---- from the bogs, etc. and two men struck him with sticks and was hit on the side of the head according to his wife. He was originally from an area around a half hour drive away. One of the brothers was fined for trespass, assault and expenses. In another case, relating to my great grandfather getting back £50 he lent to his cousin, it was mentioned that the sister of the defendant used to go to my great grandfather's house occasionaly. She met him one night and, being under the influence, he struck her when advising him to go home so they were not friendly. She often did washing for his dad since there was no woman in the house since his mother died when he was 6. His sister died when he was 12 and 7/8 of his brothers had died by the time he was 11 with the last brother also dying young. I don't think that I'll ever tell my mum about that since my mum never knew him and he died in an accident when my granny was 16. My mum only ever heard good things about him and, even then, it wasn't much since granny got upset when talking about her parents since both died in accidents.
My 3x great grandmother and 3 of her children were evicted from their home under an order made in an equity suit instituted against her son by the Ulster Bank. They were arrested for taking forcible possession of their home. The farm was purchased at public auction held by order of the Court. The solicitor for the family set up a question of title to the lands on behalf of the mother and claimed to have a right to the lands. The Judge charged the jury, telling them that the rights of the parties were ascertained by the court and that the prisoners had no right to take forcible possession and that the orders of the Court must be obeyed. The jury found them not guilty after half an hour consideration. A newspaper in the US noted my 3x great grandmother's son's connection and services in the cause of Irish Nationality. Her son was sent to prison for conspiracy to defraud in 1898, threatening language in 1899, obtaining money under false pretences in 1899.
My grandfather's brother was at court for false pretences with intent to defraud obtain a cow by means of a worthless cheque. My great grandfather's brother was brought to court for having 5 people in his pub at 12:35am. He had 2 men on his premises another time, 4 another time, 6 another time. Another time, whiskey was sent to the public analyst and there was an excess of eight point three seven of water. He wasn't accused of tampering the whiskey but put it down to moisture of utensils being the cause and he claimed that he did not notice on the bottle was written in Irish that the spirit was 30 underproof. A girl was paid £7 in damages for being poisoned by a pork pie. However, the Justice said that he would like it clearly understood that there was no reflection on the pub owner who had exercised all reasonable care and had not been guilty of negligence. My 3x great grandfather was charged for selling drink after 21:00.
My grandfather's first cousin was on hunger strike in Newbridge and was reported to be in a dying condition in 1923. He was a First Lieutenant of the IRB. He drilled, raided for arms, took part in the burning of 3 barracks, an attack on a dispensary and the burning of a courthouse. He was trained in the use of a machine gun. He attended training camps and learned to make bombs. He mined a barracks. He emigrated to the US. His brother was also an officer in the IRB. Their father had taken part in the Fenian Rising, was excommunicated and on the run for 3 years according to the family.
Last edited by srmf5; Yesterday at 01:01.