Sorting Through Early Lowthers in County Mayo
There were two Lowthers mentioned in Griffith’s Valuation in Ballysakeery, Co. Mayo in 1857: Andrew Lowther and Patrick Lowther. When comparing with vital and parish records, these appear to be:
- Andrew Lowther
born about 1818
married Judy Munnely before 1845
died 1893 in Rathglass as a widower
- Patrick Lowther
born about 1820
married Babby Monly before 1855
died 1880 in Rathglass as a widower
However, I think that there is good evidence of at least a third male Lowther at this time.
The first clue is in the baptism of Patrick Lother, son of Andrew Lother, in 1856. One of the witnesses was Michael Lother. It seems unlikely that Michael Lother (husband of Bridget Cawley) would be the witness, as he was only 15 years old at the time. This alone brings up the question of another Michael Lother and his relation.
The second clue has to do with the death records of Lothers. When they died, both Patrick and Andrew Lowther were widowers. Another death record exists for Julia Lowther. This Julia was born around 1826 and died in 1886. When she died, she was a farmer’s widow and her son Andrew Lowther was the witness. Julia could not have been married to either Andrew or Patrick Lowther because they had all been widowed.
It is my belief that Julia Lowther was the wife of Michael Lowther.
Julia’s son Andrew Lowther was probably the Andrew Lowther born about 1856 in Mayo according to the 1901 census. This is the only Andrew to have children recorded by 1886.
I think that Michael Lowther (husband of Bridget Cawley) was likely the son of Michael Lowther and Julia, and the brother of Andrew Lowther. An Andrew Lother was a witness for half of Michael Lowther’s children’s baptisms. It would make more sense that a brother or a father than an uncle. Andrew Lother is most likely not the son of Andrew Lother (husband of Judy Munnely) because Andrew & Judy’s son Patrick was born in 1856 and his birth/baptism recorded, but Andrew Lother (husband of Bridget) was born about the same time and not recorded, but it is a possibility.
An Anne Lowther was the daughter of a Julia, but the record lacks the year. It could have been the Ann Lother who married Francis Craig, as a Pat Creig and a Mary Creig witnessed Penelope Lowther (daughter of Michael Lowther and Bridget Cawley). Craig was a popular surname in the area, so it could also be that it’s a neighbor, a friend, or a sister and brother-in-law, but it’s unknown.