Corca Laidhe DNA Project - Goals

Statistical Analysis

One goal is to acquire enough data to discover if the Corca Laidhe can be differentiated from other Munster tribes. For this we need 10 sets of haplotypes from at least 10 ten different Corca Laidhe surnames whose earliest known ancestor was born in Munster.

Direct Sampling

One of the principle problems is that nearly all the data comes from descendants of men whose genealogy did not begin to be recorded until fairly recently, i.e. circa 1700-1800. What little ancient genealogy is available principally concerns the royal lines. Rather than trying to deal statistically with a small signal amidst a plethora of noise a direct approach is preferable wherein persons known to descend from the Corca Laidhe are tested.

  • Identify documented descendants of the Corca Laidhe. The Great Book of Irish Genealogies this is a set of 5 volumes published in 2004 and based on material written circa 1650. WorldCat lists 22 libraries which hold the set. The book needs to be checked to see if it shows pedigrees of Corca Laidhe persons living in the 1600s when the book was published.

Circumstantial Evidence

  • O'Donovan, Miscellany of the Celtic Society(1849): "according to a wild tradition in the country, there are fishermen on Cape Clear and on other islands off the Coast of Carbery, who are lineally descended from the youngest son of Sir Finghin, or Florence, of 1602".
    • Test several different O'Driscoll whose earliest known ancestor is from one of the islands off the Coast of Carbery.
  • In O'Hart's Irish Pedigrees (1892) he links some ancient and contemporary pedigrees. Unfortunately he did not always document the linkages and records he may have used were likely destroyed in the 1922 Four Courts fire. Nevertheless he names some persons living when the book was written and their genealogy can be worked forward in time to find living males.
    • Test descendants of the Coffey of Munster and compare the results with the Nicholson said to have branched of the Coffey line represented by descendants of Donald MacNicol, Chief of the Clan in the Isle of Skye, in the reigns of King Charles I. and II.
  • A chronology of the MacClanchy from 1241 to 1641 appeared in the Irish Penny Journal in 1841 (O’Donovan, 1849, p 85). The article concludes with “the property of the MacClanchys was confiscated after the rebellion of 1641, but their name is the prevailing one in the barony of Dartree, or Rossclogher, to the present day.” These MacClanchy or Clancy share a common ancestor with the Corca Laidhe.
    • Test Clancy with a tradition of being descendents of the Clancy of Dartree
  • Autosomal DNA - it is theoretically possible to discover the paternal yDNA signature of a line that has daughtered out by strategic use of the the autosomal Family Finder test. There are two essential elements needed: (1) a known descendant of the line and (2) a male of the same surname with a strong circumstantial evidence of being a 4th cousin or closer to that known descendant.