Analysis. Immigration date of the Letterkenney Walkers

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Letterkenny, Conwal, County Donegal, Republic of Ireland
Maryland, United States
Pennsylvania, United States
Year range
1700 - 1750


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Source:Egle's Notes and Queries
Analysis:Robert Walker 1630-1690 Descendancy
William J. Walker Website, accessed 23 June 2010
Analysis. Is the William Walker who died at McCormicks Fort William 186?


Sometime before 1734 five brothers, sons of person:James Walker (160) and his wife Elizabeth, and grandsons of Robert Walker (52), immigrated from Letterkenney, Ireland, to Pennsylvania with their parents Source:Egle's Notes and Queries. The earliest records for these Letterkenny Walkers date from 1734. Some authors give an immigration date of before 1715, others indicate that they landed in Baltimore Maryland in 1725. Supporting original source documentation has not been found for any of these views. It is of some interest that YDNA evidence supports the view that descendants of the Letterkenney Walkers are closely related to descendants who trace their heiritage to the Wigton Walkers. IN this regard it is interesting to note that the later line is identified in Source:White, 1902 as having settled in what is now Cecil County Maryland, about the same time as the Letterkeeny Walkers are said by some to have settled in Maryland. While we have some original source documentation that tends to confirm the Wigton Walker presence in Cecil County Maryland circa 1734, we have no documentation as yet for their presence in the area in the 1726 time frame. Nor do we have original source documentation for the Letterkenney Walkers in Baltimore about the same time. Additional research is needed on these points.

Some writers believe that the Letterkenney Walkers came to America in two waves, with William son of James (160) coming first before 1715, and the others coming in 1732. This seems to be based on a belief that William married Elizabeth Curry in Philadelphia in 1715. That basis for that marriage is unknown, and Source:Egle's Notes and Queries the primary source for information on the early history of the Letterkenney Walkers makes no mention of this. There may indeed have been a marriage between a William Walker and an Elizabeth Curry in 1715 in Philadelphia, but records supporting this have not been located as yet. It is possible that this is an entirely different William Walker, and William son of James may not have married an Elizabeth Curry at all.

At this time the earliest confirmed record for the Letterkenney Walkers in America is Williams land warrant in Cumberland County, dated 1734.

It is interesting to note that some authors also indicate that person:William Walker (186) son of James, married twice. This is based on the 1768 probate record for a William Walker in Cumberland County, indentifying his wife as "Mary". Reconciling this with the information that he married Elizabeth Curry in 1715, requires that Elizabeth die, and William remarries. However, William is thought to have been killed by Indians at McCormicks Fort in 1757; a delay of 11 years between his death and the probate process seems unlikely. Robert, brother of William, is believed to have had a son William who died in 1765 in Cumberland County. The child list for this William is similar to that for William (186), but apparently includes a son Samuel that is otherwise not given in Source:Egle's Notes and Queries. A plausible explanation is that "Mary" was the name of this later William Walker, and that William (186) married only once.