The Murray family is well known in the East Cork and West Waterford areas. Their history, however, was a little in the dark as several members of the family back in the 1800s, like many other Irish families, emigrated to the USA and the UK. Eddie Murray, along with his sister Terri, decided to try to locate the absent members of their family and invite them to a huge Family Reunion which was fixed for Sunday last, August 2nd. An amazing amount of research and work was carried out including advertising, internet explorations, family trees and follow ups to locate as many of the family as possible. Denise FitzGerald/ East Cork Journal Reports/ Photo: Michael Hussey www.youghalonline.com/ Video: David Farrell www.youghalonline.com
It was with a great sense of excitement and trepidation that the fifty five or so Murrays arrived at the Red Store in Youghal to meet each other. Such was the hype that the meal, which was planned for much earlier, did not take place until 9pm as the Murrays kept arriving, chatting, introducing and finding out who was whom.
The evening eventually commenced and after the meal there was an introduction by Terri Moore (nee Murray) which was followed by a presentation by Eddie Murray, who had put together a 4ft x 3ft family tree which he had surmounted on a large board.
The furthest back the family can trace is Jeremiah Murray in 1722 (called Jeremiah 1 for easy identification). Jeremiah Murray 2 followed on, and they are both buried in Dangan Donovan graveyard just outside Corbally, Mount Uniacke. Michael Murray was born in 1838 in the Mount Uniacke area, and he was the Murray who came into Youghal and started the building firm of Michael Murray & Sons. This later became John Murray & Sons and finally Thomas Murray & Sons. This branch of the Murray family built the Strand Church and the Cottage Hospital in Youghal.
The evening went into enjoyment mode after the meal, and the celebrations, craic agus chat went on well into the night. Eddie Murray, speaking with East Cork Journal, said it had been a fantastic night and well worth the efforts which he and Terri, in particular, put into tracing their family. They have all arranged to meet again in two years time, and hope the reunion will take place some time in July 2011. Eddie would encourage all with an interest in their families to follow in their tracks and find for themselves the family they never knew they had.
Michael Murray , The Strand, Youghal is almost 94 years of age and is the head of the Murray clan at present. Michael more than stayed the course on Sunday evening and was, in fact, one of the last to leave the Red Store, well into the wee early hours of the morning.
The following morning, Monday, August 3rd East Cork Journal were informed that Michael and Eddie, neither of whom were willing to let it go at that, rose early and toured the East Cork/West Waterford area with a view to putting things to bed. They visited the Dangan graveyard where the Corbally Murrays are buried. Then, on to Kilcounty school where their ancestors were educated. From there to Inch School where the Inch School Book 1840 to 1894 mentions the Murray family. Ardagh Cemetery was the final resting place for more of the family, and it is here that Michael and Eddie concluded their search.
We wish all the Murray families long and continued good health.
Click on image to start slideshow of the The Murray family reunion 2009 at The Red Store, Youghal, Co.Cork Photo Michael Hussey www.youghalonline.com