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Dunmanway out in force to welcome MacCarthys ‘home'

May 26th, 2017 3:15 PM

By Siobhan Cronin

Niall MacCarthy, managing director, Cork Airport welcoming Susan MacCarthy-Hallett and her son Will at Cork Airport. (Photo: John Allen)

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DUNMANWAY is getting ready to welcome many McCarthys – and indeed MacCarthys – into its arms this weekend.

A major clan gathering, based around the repatriation of thousands of historical documents to Cork from the US, takes place this weekend in the West Cork town.

The Parkway Hotel in Dunmanway will host a reception to kick off three days of events on Friday evening, concluding with tours of relevant sites on Sunday.

Susan MacCarthy and her husband Edward Hallett and son Will from Oregon arrived in Cork Airport last Saturday to a huge welcome. Susan and her brother Don, who arrived on Sunday, have agreed to give documents relating to their ancestor Daniel MacCarthy Glas, to the Cork City and County Archives.

The MacCarthy Hallett family were welcomed into a VIP champagne reception on their arrival in Cork, by a large Dunmanway contingent, and airport managing director Niall McCarthy – another member of the ‘clan’ of course!

The over 2,000 items donated – which were lying in two trunks in the US for several decades – contain many documents of historical interest, including meticulously noted reports of various periods in history, by Daniel MacCarthy and his relations.

As part of a MacCarthy Surname Study, linked to the overall project, many people have traced their DNA to West Cork and Kerry, including the Oregon McCarthys themselves.

The MacCarthy Glas family is now believed to be descended from the princes of Carbery, the MacCarthy Reaghs and the MacCarthy Glas, who were based at Dunmanway’s Togher Castle.

The castle is one of the locations on a tour of relevant sites taking place between workshops, talks and entertainment evenings this weekend.

Hollywood actor Andrew McCarthy, star of St Elmo’s Fire and Mannequin, and now an award-winning travel writer for National Geographic, long believed his ancestry was based in West Cork.

But, after tracing his DNA, prompted by gathering organiser, Dunmanway historian Michelle O’Mahony, McCarthy found his roots near Listowel in Co Kerry.

‘Wish I could be there,’ Andrew told Michelle in an email this week, adding that he was currenlty filming episodes of the hit series Orange is the New Black in Toronto, which he is directing.

‘My love to the McCarthys,’ he added.

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