Bowles DNA Project
The Catholic Boles of Cloyne
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Two brothers from England, Richard and Thomas Boles, settled near Liscarroll in northern Cork by the 1630's. Following the Rebellion of 1641, Thomas settled in the south near Youghal while Richard received a grant of land at Ballynalty "in the great plowland of Moyge" just to the east of Liscarroll. In 1737 Richard's grandson Thomas built a great house at Moyge where the family lived until the house was sold to a Philip Nunan in 1808 shortly before that branch of the Boles line moved back to England. See The Boles of Cork for more on that line.They were Protestant but there were also quite a few Catholic Boles in the same area by the late 1700's. The main family line seems to have originated in Liscarroll but by the mid-1800's members of this line had settled throughout the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne, in Liscarroll, Shandrum, Charleville Ballyclough, Ballysheehan and Curryglass. There are two most likely origins for this line or lines.
Possibly one or more members of the Protestant Boles family married Catholic women and raised their children in their faith. There are several male Boles of the 1700's who we don't know anything about and may have been the originators of some of these Catholic Boles.
The other possibility is that one or more Catholic families with a name similar to Boles, possibly a Boyle (originally O' Baoighill), adopted the Boles spelling. It was not unusual for an English clerk, on hearing an unfamiliar Irish name, to write down a tenant or parishioner's name as one they knew how to spell.
There are some indications that the second explanation is more likely but not enough to prove this question either way.
Points for a Local Irish Origin For the Boles/Bowles of the Liscarroll Area
The very earliest references that I have found in Liscarroll were recorded in the parish registers as Boalds from 1813. The Boles of Moyge were large landowners who had lived quite close by for almost 200 years so the clerk's use of the Boalds spelling would likely indicate an unrelated family line.
The Catholic Boles of Cloyne's Family TreeAt least two Unknown Boles m. Unknown (most likely they were both RC or at least the wives were; all of the following brothers or cousins were RC): Richard Boalds (Bowles) b. ca. 1790 Liscarroll, co. Cork (see William below) m. Catherine McAuliffe (b. ca. 1790) Jan. 16, 1813 Liscarroll (witnesses: Thomas and James Sullivan) 1. Daniel Boalds bp. July 15, 1826 Liscarroll (sponsors: Denis Lenahan, Mary Flyn) 2. Richard Bowles b. 1830 Liscarroll, co. Cork m. Ellen Connors (b. May 1831 Liscarroll; Daniel, Ellen Murphy) 2.1 Patrick Bowles b. Apr. 21, 1868 Liscarroll, co. Cork m. Ellen Cavanagh (b. Sept. 1, 1872 Liscarroll; Owen, Johanna Sullivan) 2.1.1 Hannah Bowles b. June 9, 1901 Liscarroll, co. Cork m. Timothy Collins (b. Aug. 1, 1907 Liscarroll; Timothy, Margaret Cavanagh) William Boalds b. ca. 1795 () m. Margaret Sullivan Feb. 16, 1817 Liscarroll (witnesses: Thomas Cowen, Thomas Hefernan) 1. Thomas Boles bp. Aug. 13, 1821 Mitchelstown (sponsors: Edward McAuliff, Mary B...) William Boalds b. ca. 1795 (likely Richard's brother or cousin) m. Mary Connel July 14, 1817 Liscarrol (witnesses: Edmund Barret, Joanne Barret) Thomas Boalds b. ca. 1796 (likely another brother or cousin) m. Honora Leahane Feb. 3, 1818 Liscarrol (witnesses: Tim Leahane, Benjamin Bras....) Patrick Boalds b. ca. 1800 (likely another brother or cousin) m. Catharine Morrisy Feb. 7, 1826 Liscarroll (witnesses: John McCormack, David Sheehan)