Carolyn L. Braun (

A wee bit of Irish …

A few Irish tidbits …

As we grew up, my mother was convinced that she was at least half Irish. Green Irish. Not orange Irish. Green Irish are generally Catholic. Orange Irish are generally Protestant. Since we were Lutheran, and many of the ancestors were Methodist, I always thought we would be orange irish – so, on St. Patrick’s Day, I would wear orange. I didn’t much like green. However, my orange attire wasn’t much appreciated and I often had to change and put on something green.

St. Patrick’s day was a day of celebration in our house – complete with green beer. I remember one party where the kids were allowed to drink a little green beer. I think I must have overdone it … I just remember feeling sick afterwards … green sick.

The thought-to-be Irish ancestral name on my Mom’s side of the family is McFadden (also spelled McFadyen). My mother’s maiden name was Fadden, having lost the “Mc” in later years. For years, I painstakingly researched the name, looking through many books on Irish names. I couldn’t find the name Fadden or McFadden in those books. I turned to the Mormon records, starting with my mother’s information and moving back in time. I ended my search by finding Andrew McFadden – born in 1675 – on the Isle of Mull, Scotland! I didn’t tell my mother of my find – because she was in poor health at the time. After she passed away, I did the search again – this time using the internet (which is much easier than looking up paper documents) – and quickly came to the same conclusion. However, the story doesn’t end there — Andrew went to Ireland where he first married an Irish woman named Marsey Mallory (4 children) and then married an Irish woman named Jane Lindsey (3 chldren). (Andrew came to the Boston area in 1718 and lived the remainder of his life in Arrowsic Island, Maine.) Aha -here’s the Irish connection.  My mother may not have been half – Irish – but she was more than a wee bit Irish!

A wee bit more on Andrew McFadden, since he is the one who brought the Irish into our lneage —   According to the McFadden Project (click HERE), the MacFadyens of the Isle of Mull in Scotland may be the oldest recorded McFadden clan. Their story begins in the 14th century when Hector the Stern was granted lands on Mull and found them already inhabited by MacFadyens.  Hector was the founder of Clan Maclaine of Lochbuie. From the many accounts I’ve read, it appears that Hector and his clan told the McFadyens: ‘Join us or die’  Being the wise group that we are, the McFadyens were more than happy to join. “Any McFaddens (or variants) with connections to Mull or the surrounding area, including the nearby isles of Tiree and Coll, are almost certainly affiliated with Clan Maclaine.” As such, the McFadden’s are considered a sept (a branch of the clan) of the McLaine clan had have the rights to the McLaine crest and tartan along with the McFadden crest and tartan.

Thanks for reading!!


2 replies to “A wee bit of Irish …

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