|. Henry Connelly, legendary ancestor of the Eastern Ky Conleys
. author: Michael D. Nestor, email: email@example.com
. Henry Connelly,1 (ancestry unknown)
. The only source for the early Connelly generations is William Elsey Connelley (#D2311) (late 19th and early 20th centuries).
. According to him, the Connelly brothers Thomas, Edmund, and possibly John and Henry, came from County Armaugh, Ireland and
. ca 1689 settled at Old Albemarle Point, which became Charleston, SC. Edmund Connelly, the youngest son of Henry Connelly,
. supposedly married in SC to Mary Edgefield and had sons Thomas and Harmon. Harmon married the dau of a physician named
. Hicks and Thomas married a "Pennsylvania Dutch woman". Thomas died about two years after suffering wounds at the Battle of
. Kings Mountain (which was fought in Oct 1780). Thomas' son was Capt Henry Connelly/Conley (#D).
. An interesting alternative ancestry by William Elsey Connelley himself was filed by him on 15 Mar 1897 in his application to
. "The Kansas Society of the Sons of the American Revolution". In this he lists Henry Connelly's wife as Mary (Robertson or
. Robinson), and Thomas Connelly's wife as Mary (Hicks) Connelly. This application was signed by William E. Connelley, Kan-
. sas City, Kansas, Real Estate Dealer. He also gave Henry's son Thomas' wife's name as Susan (Gians) Connelly. Later he says
. Susan was a Joynes and her uncle was Henry Guyan. This new info was in his book "The Founding of Harmon's Station ...",
. published in 1910, and in that he says uncle Edmund Connelly (actually his great uncle) was the source of the claim that Capt
. Henry's mother was "a Pennsylvania Dutch woman". In this book he also says his earlier belief that Capt Henry and his brother
. Harmon married sisters, daus of Dr. Hicks, was an error. Other sources say Thomas m Mary Van Harlingen and later claim without
. documentation that he was b ca 1725 "Charlestown, SC". Both William Elsey Connelley and Capt Henry Conley's pension papers
. just say that Capt Henry's mother was a Pennsylvania Dutch woman. So the claim she was Mary Van Harlingen may be correct, but
. so far it is undocumented. In the above claims, Mary Hicks is claimed to be the mother of Capt Henry and the wife of Harmon
. This story has evolved to state that the four brothers were the sons of Henry Connelly of County Armaugh, Ireland. Others,
. unidentified, have added birth years for Thomas' ancestors, and their siblings, going far beyond Mr. Connelley's brief sketch of the
. early generations. These additional "facts" are undocumented and apparently not in the public records. Some are exact dates and
. some appear to be estimates based on average ages for having offspring. No sources are cited, but these have been blindly copied
. and recopied by many and are on many internet sites, as well in the LDS records, which only store submitted genealogies without
. any editorial review:
. Supposedly Edmund was b 2 Jul 1700 (or 2 Jul 1688) Charlestown, SC, and d ca 1750 Guilford Co, NC, and his wife was Mary
. Edgefield, b ca 1700 Charlestown, and d ca 1750 Guilford Co, d/o Col Arthur Edgefield. Edmund was supposedly the s/o Henry
. Connelly and Betsy Vaux Buckley, and supposedly this Henry was the s/o an older Henry Conley, of County Armaugh, Ireland.
. Supposedly Thomas was b ca 1725 in "Charlestown", SC and Harmon was b ca 1722 in "Charleston", SC, and Harmon's wife was
. Mary Hicks. There is no documentation offered to support any of these added names and dates, although there are possible ele-
. ments of truth in these stories. There is a frequent claim that Thomas Conley, supposed father of Capt Henry, is the same
. Thomas who served in the RW in SC. This appears to be a presumption that he is the same Thomas from Chester Co, Pa, but
. there is no evidence for that.
. In summary, Capt Henry Conley was b 1751 in Chester Co, Pa acc to his RW pension application. Thomas Conley was age 17 when
. he participated in Braddock's expedition, so he was b ca 1741. Edmund Conoly/Connelly was the son of Constantine Connoly/Con-
. nelly, named in the latter's 1741 estate papers. Edmund was listed in the Chester Co tax lists in 1747/48, 1749/50, and 1756. There
. were no other Connellys in Chester Co at this time, or at least in the records found to date, having been researched by a professional
. Acc to Capt Henry Conley's pension application, he moved with his father from Chester Co, Pa to Guilford Co, NC, where he was
. living at the time of entry into RW service. So far, no record of Edmund (or Thomas) Connelly in the Guilford Co, NC area has been
. found. Henry's RW pension states that he went to Montgomery Co, Va during the war, and that is where Thomas Conley live
. William Elsey Connelley changed his version of Capt Henry's wife's and mother's names (see above). He incorrectly claimed that
. the "famous" Henry B. Connelly, 1st territorial governor of NM, was closely related to Capt Henry. That family's history is fairly
. well documented and it appears there is no liklihood of him being related to Capt Henry. Henry B. was a son of John Donaldson
. Connelly, son of John Connelly (#X) of Fairfax and Loudon Co's, Va. William also totally overlooked the existence of the other
. large Conley clan in Floyd Co, namely the elder David Conley and his likely sons. See below for the specific quotes from Mr. Con-
. nelley's writings.
. I am offering an alternative theory of Capt Henry Conley's ancestry, which at least fits the small amount of available records.
. Namely Capt Henry's father was likely Edmund Conley, and Henry's claimed father Thomas was likely a brother, and possibly the
. Thomas Conley who died prior 1792 in Montgomery Co, Va. Edmund was probably the same Edmund, s/o Constantine Connoly/
. Conelly, whose will was prob 1741 Chester Co, Pa, naming son Edmund as administrator. The main reasoning in stating that Thomas
. was likely Henry's brother and not his father, is that Thomas Conley, age 17, was listed as a participant in 1758 Braddock's expedi-
. tion, and hence b ca 1741, too young to be Henry's father.
. Further detailed research in early Maryland and Virginia records may provide more clues on this family, but no broad, detailed
. searches have yet been undertaken. There is a Charlestown in Chester Co, Pa, and perhaps this was where the Connelly's lived,
. and not Charleston, SC. There is also a Charlestown in Cecil Co, Maryland, providing more possible confusion. In the late 1600s
. and 1700s there are a number of refernces to Conley/Connellys with similar names in the eastern Virginia area. Such as the will of
. Edmond Connelly in 1738 in Essex Co, Va. One online source claims that Edward (Edmund) Conolly, b ca 1665 Armagh, d after
. 1704 Essex Co, Va, was s/o Henry Conolly, b ca 1630 Armagh, and Edward/Edmund's sons were of his sons were Thomas Connoly,
. b ca 1685 Essex Co, who m Anne Mayfield, and Edmund, b ca 1697, d 1738, and John, b ca 1700. Conceivably Constantine Con-
. nolly who d ca 1741 Chester Co, Pa could be related to the Essex Co, Va group, such as son of the Edmond Connelly who d 1738.
. Alternative ancestry of the the Eastern Kentucky Conley's :
. Constantine Connoly/Conelly, d ca 1741 Chester Co, Pa:
. 1. Edmund Conoly/Connelly.
. issue: (possible)
. a. Thomas Connelly. Participated in the 1755 Braddock's expedition.
. (1) Thomas Connolly, b ca 1741. From Chester Co, Pa. Poss the same Thomas Connelly/Thomas whose estate was
. probated in 1792 Montgomery Co, Va.
. (2) John Conley, b 28 Jun 1744, d 24 Jul 1799 Ashe Co, NC.
. (3) Capt Henry Connelly/Conley, b 1751 Chester Co, Pa, d 1840 Johnson Co, Ky.
. The "legendary" Thomas Conley (#1), oft claimed father of Capt Henry Conley.
. William Elsey Connelley's exact quotes:
From 1. "Eastern Kentucky Papers, The Founding of Harman's Station, With an Account of the Indian Captivity of Mrs. Jennie
. Wiley and the Exploration and Settlement of the Big Sandy Valley in the Virginias and Kentucky, To Which is Affixed a
. Brief Account of the Connelly Family and Some Its Collateral and Related Families in America", 1910, by William Elsey
. p 95. "Thomas Connelly and his brother Edmund, and perhaps two other brothers, John and Henry, came from
. County Armagh, Ireland, and settled at Old Albemarle Point about the year 1689. This settlement moved
. later, to become Charlestown, in the colony of South Carolina; it is now the metropolis of the state of South
. Carolina, and the name is written Charleston."
. p 97: Referring to Dr. Henry Connelly, governor of NM: "His father was John Donaldson Connelly, born in Vir-
. ginia, and either a brother or first cousin to Capt Henry Connelly...."
. This was John Donaldson Conley (#X3) and since Capt Henry's brother was apparently John Connely (#A)
. of Ashe Co, NC, and if Mr. Connelley was correct, then John Donaldson Connelly would be Capt Henry's
. 1st cousin, and a grandson of Edmund Connelly. However this close relationship appears to be impossible,
. leaving the only possible relationship between these two Henry's as a distant one going back to Ireland.
. p 98: "Edmund Connelly, the youngest son of Henry Connelly, is said to have married, in South Carolina, a lady
. named Mary Edgefield. They left sons and daughters, among them, Harmon and Thomas. Harmon Connelly
. moved to North Carolina, where he owned lands on the frontier. Tradition says that he there married the
. daughter of a physician named Hicks."
. p 99: Referring toThomas Connelly: "Whom he married is not known, but in the light of recent reliable information
. it must have been a Pennsylvania Dutch woman."
. p 100: "Captain Henry Connelly, the Revolutionary Soldier, was the son of the above mentioned Thomas Connelly.
. He was born in Chester County, Pennsylvania, and came with his father to Guilford County, North Carolina."
. 2. "Doniphan's Expedition and the Conquest of New Mexico and California", John Taylor Hughes, William Elsey Connelley,
. 1907, p 177. Referring to Dr. Henry B. Connelly, the first Governor of NM: "The descendants of Thomas are far more
. numerous than are those of Edmund. Dr. Henry Connelly was one of the descendants of Thomas."
. 3. Other quotes from Mr. Connelley:
. Thomas Connelly served in "General Braddock's army in its disastrous march on Fort Du Quesne." He also claimed that he
. was the same Thomas that "served during the winter of 1779-1780 in the First South Carolina Regiment, commanded by
. Col. Charles Cotesworth Pinckney...."