McQuillan Genealogy

McQuillan's trace their Gaelic ancestry back to County Antrim in northern Ireland where they occupied Dunluce Castle during the 1500's.  My paternal grandfather's ancestors, a McQuillan family, emigrated from County Derry during the Irish potato famine.  They sailed from Glasgow on the Barque H.M.S. Junior.  The four masted vessel arrived in New York City on November 15, 1851, after a 55-day voyage.  Thomas, their youngest son, fought in the American Civil War on the Union side.  In 1862, he was wounded during the Battle of Seven Pines in Virginia and never fully recovered due to the malaria he contracted.

My paternal grandmother, Bridget McNulty, was born in Swinford, County Mayo, Ireland.  At the age of 16, during the Irish Civil War in 1922, she immigrated through Ellis Island in New York City.  She changed her name to Elizabeth, married Lawrence McQuillan, and raised a family in Norwalk, Connecticut, where my father, Paul, and his sister, Mary, grew up.  Paul married Charlotte Nelson, a Texas Belle who he met while serving in the U.S. Air Force, and sired three red-haired boys:  Dennis, Mike and Jim.  Paul and all of his three sons have toured Ireland at least once, met their McNulty relatives in Swinford, and visited Dunluce Castle (more images here).