The Kieley families in Holyrood most likely belong to a single clan but I haven’t been able to make concrete family associations based on current information. It is difficult to connect the later generations to each other, or to know for sure who their immediate ancestors might be. Clarification would be most appreciated!

The information on this page is essentially a collection of (so far) unrelated data. It should be noted that the spelling of the KIELEY name is inconsistent and variable and has often been confused with RILEY and KELLY, probably because of difficult to decipher handwriting in the old records, and perhaps also because of family group preferences. The name seems to be also confused with KIRBY, and perhaps vice versa.

The following information on the Kieley family has been extracted from “Come Ashore to Holyrood”, by Mary M Veitch.(St John’s 1989) [pgs 108]

The Kieleys of Newfoundland trace their roots to Dungarvan, Ireland. In Newfoundland they were traders and planters (inshore fishermen). Those who came to Holyrood settled near the seashore on the south side, east of the Ultramar site. There were 3 sons of this family who produced the various Kieley clans today : Thomas, James 1 and John.

Thomas married Bridget Nowlan of Avondale. Their son, Thomas, married Mary Furey and built a house at the end of Kieley’s Road nestled under Butterpot Mountain. Thomas Jr., worked in the coal mines in Sydney, N.S. On his return home he was employed as a “section man” with the Newfoundland Railway. They raised a large family, four of whom are . . . Patrick, Holyrood; John and Cecilia, Gander; and Frances in Darthmouth, NS.

John Kieley married Elizabeth Lewis. They lived in their home by the sea for many years and raised their family by farming and fishing. Five of their nine children died at an early age. The 4 surviving children were 1) Rachel, 2) James, 3) John and 4) Philip.
Rachel married Matthew ORourke.
James married Ellen Hickey.

John and Philip went to work in the USA. While there they met and married sisters Annie and Bridie Walsh from North Harbour, St Mary’s Bay.

John and Annie Kieley had seven children: Raymond, Michael, Vincent,John Jr., Elizabeth, Mary and Bride.
Raymond died young as a result of an accident.
Michael married Margaret Bennett.
Elizabeth married Jack Harding.
Mary married John Walsh.
Bride married Benedict Costello of King’s Cove.

John Kieley, Sr., died in 1914 and Elizabeth lived with her son John and his family until her death in 1934. Annie Kieley died in 1943, and her husband John in 1954. Bridie passed away in 1963 and her husband Philip in 1967.

Philip and Bride had (at least) three children; Leonard, John, and Ellen.

[ 1 Note: there is no info on James Kieley in Come Ashore.]

I came across another Dungarvan connection that might or might not be meaningful. I’ve extracted this item from a larger article called “Irish Immigrants to Atlantic Canada 1832-1846” by Terrence M Punch, which can be found on the Irish Emigration Database

As evidence of the movement patterns of Irish immigrants
in North America in the pre-famine period the author lists
over 100 examples of notices inserted in the ‘Boston Pilot’
and its predecessors by persons seeking missing relatives.
These demonstrate that immigrants who landed in the ports
of eastern Canada (most commonly Saint John, New Brunswick)
frequently moved on into the United States and, once there,
tended to move on again.

KILEY, Patrick, John & Michael, Dungarvan, County Waterford,
sought by their sister Bridget, wife of James O’Brien,
carpenter, Saint John, N.B. [New Brunswick?], c/o Very Rev.
[Reverend?] James Dunphy, P.P. [Parish Priest?], Saint John,
N.B. [New Brunswick?]. Patrick, a tailor, went 30 years
before to St. [Saint?] Thomas, West Indies; John, a shoemaker,
left 20 years before for Saint John’s Nfld. [Newfoundland?]
and was last in Mexico City; Michael, a labourer, left soon
after John, and was last at Hobart Town, Sydney. (30 August

Kieley’s in Voters Lists and Directories

JAMES KIELY is listed in the 1835 voters list for South Side Holyrood. [1] JAMES and THOMAS KIELY, both fishermen, are listed in the 1864 Hutchinson’s Directory [2]; and THOMAS and JOHN KIELEY appear in the 1874 voters list for Holyrood, South Side.[3] Only JOHN KEILY, Holyrood South is on the 1882 [4] voters list, but by 1885 [5] a number of KEELEYs (sic) appear; JOHN, MATTHEW, and JOHN, Sen. are all in Holyrood South, but a PAUL[6,7] is listed in North Arm.

The 1889 [8] voters list reflected the changes made to the voting regulations, and included men 25 and older, as well as the male householders. All of the KIELLYs were shown on the South Side of Holyrood: JOHN Jr. (Householder), THOMAS (29), JAMES (26), JOHN Sr. (Householder), JAMES (Householder), and MATTHEW (34).

In the 1894 McAlpine’s Directory [9] the KIELLYs, all fishermen living in Holyrood proper were JAMES, THOMAS, JAMES, JOHN, and JOHN.

The 1898 McAlpine’s Directory [10] had the following KIELLYs.
JAMES sr – farmer,
JAS [?of] (Jas) laborer,
JOHN [?of] (Jas) laborer,
THOMAS sr – farmer,
JOHN sr – farmer,
JAMES [?of] (John) laborer,
JOHN jr – laborer.
[Note: I’m assuming that the names in () are the fathers of these men.]

In 1904[11] the KIELLYs listed in the McAlpine’s Directory are JOHN Sr. farmer, JAMES Jr. farmer, JOHN Jr. laborer, THOMAS laborer, JAMES Sr. laborer.

Kieley’s in Church and Census Records

Unless otherwise noted the following records are online at Grand Banks Genealogy. Sts Peter and Paul RC Baptisms, from Harbour Main[12].

1859 #37 – Matthew — 7 Jun – Kyran Walsh – Patrick Hickey SARAH KIELY
1862 #25 – Sarah — 1 May – Kyran Walsh – JOHN KIELY Betsy Woodford
1866 #50 – Alice Joseph – 28 Jul – Patrick O’Donnell – Thomas Penny Hanna Penny

There is no marriage record for this couple, so they were probably married in Brigus before 1857 when the Harbour Main parish was established – or perhaps in St John’s or elsewhere… It’s possible other children were born before 1859.

– JAMES KEILY & ANN (ANASTASIA) CURRAN, Holyrood married Jan 15 1860
Rev. Kryan Walsh Witnesses: James Bennett & MARY KIELY (#7)
1861 #124 -Thomas — 5 Nov – William Walsh – Patrick Brien MARY KEILY
1863 #34 – James Joseph – 6 May – William Walsh – Thomas McGrath Ellen McGrath
1865 #102 -Mary Bridge – 12 Oct – Kyran Walsh – Thomas Brown Maria Cullen
1867 #18 – John — 24 Feb – Patrick O’Donnell – Thomas Morrissey Kate Lewis

In the Curran section of Come Ashore to Holyrood ANN CURRAN is said to be married to James KIRBY. The Kirby section of the book has this: ‘The name KIRBY in Holyrood dates back to the mid 1800’s. In 1861 James Kirby is recorded as marrying Ann Curran, also of Holyrood.” No other information is given. The online records at the Grand Banks site all have Keily, as noted. So, is it KIELEY or KIRBY?

– JOHN KIELY & ELIZABETH LEWIS, Holyrood married Feb 04, 1871
Rev. Patrick O’Donnell Witnesses: Michael Brophy & Elizabeth Lewis (#34)
1871 #173 . Sarah –  6 Dec – Jeremiah O’Donnell JAMES KIELY Margaret Lewis
1873 #156 . James Thomas – [father JOHN KIRBY*] 7 Dec, John O’Connor William McGrath Mary McGrath
1876 #32 . .Mary Anne – [mother ELLEN LEWIS*] 5 Mar, Jeremiah O’Donnell JOHN KIELY Mary Myers
1878 #18 . .John Francis – 10 Nov Joseph V. Donnelly MATTHEW KIELLY Margaret Hickey sub. Conditions
1881 #76 . .Mary Anne – 31 Jul Joseph V. Donnelly James McGrath Sophia Butler
1884 Philip Joseph – March 30 Witnesses: John McGrath & Catherine McGrath[13]

The 4 surviving children were 1) Rachel, 2) James, 3) John and 4) Philip.
Rachel married Matthew ORourke.
James married Ellen Hickey.
John married Annie Walsh, North Harbour, St Mary’s Bay
Philip married Bridget Walsh, sister of Annie. 

No info. There is a Matthew ORourke listed in the 1921 census[14] married to a Bride.

Jno. . . . . . 1878 Nov, 42 – Holyrood South
Annie [Walsh] .1878 Dec, 42 – North Hr St Mary’s Bay
Raymond . . .Son – 1907 Oct, 14 – Buffalo, NY, USA died 24 Oct 1929[16]
Elizabeth . .Dau – 1909 Mar, 12 – Buffalo, NY, USA
Ml . . . . . Son – 1911 Aug, 10 – Holyrood South
Mary . . . . Dau – 1916 Aug, 5 – -Holyrood South
Vincent . . .Son – 1918 Oct, 2 – -Holyrood South
Bride . . . .Dau – 1920 Dec, 7m – Holyrood South
Elizabeth . Mother Widow 1849 Nov, 72 Holyrood South
1921 census Holyrood South[14]

3. – JAMES KIELY and ELLEN HICKEY married at Holyrood Jan 14 1904
(#1) Wtnss. John Kiely & Elizabeth Lewis. J. Mac[cut off – same handwriting as J. Murphy][17]
James [Kielly] 1881 Aug, 40 Holyrood South
Elsie (sic) . .1882 Jul, 39 Holyrood South
Rosie . . Dau – 1906 Jan, 15 Holyrood South
Aggie . . Dau – 1904 Mar, 17 Holyrood South
1921 census Holyrood South[14]

Philip . . . 1884 March 37 . . Holyrood South
Bride . . . .1884 Nov 37 . . North Hr St Mary’s Bay
Leonard . . Son – 1911 Nov, 10 – Buffalo, NY, USA
Eileen . . .Dau – 1913 Oct, 8 – Buffalo, NY, USA
Anna . . . .Dau – 1915 Feb, 7 – Holyrood South
John . . . .Son – 1920 Jan, 1 – Holyrood South
1921 census Holyrood South[14]

– JOHN KIELLY MARY WHELAN, Holyrood married Jan 31, 1878
Rev. Joseph V. Donnelly Witnesses: William McGrath & Elizabeth Whelan (#62)
1878 – #70 – Elizabeth – 5 Jul – Joseph V. Donnelly – Michael Kennedy Mary Lewis

My uncle, Joe Walsh, told me that my grandmother ( Laura Whalen Walsh) was related to the Kieley’s. Is this the connection? I don’t have enough information on the Whalen family to know.

– THOMAS KIELY (Holyrood) and BRIDGET NOLAN (Salmon Cove) married
at Harbour Main on June 11 1875 by Rev. Patrick O’Donnell,
Witnesses: Michael Hickey & Anne Curran

1875 #42 – Mary – [father THOMAS REILY**] – 16 May,
– – – Patrick O’Donnell – Patrick Bezo Mary Walsh – illegitimate
1876 #153 – Thomas*** – 15 Oct, Joseph V. Donnelly, John Lewis Mary McGrath
1878 #174 – Bridget -27 Oct, Joseph V. Donnelly, James Harding Anastasia Beson
**surname should be KIELEY
***Thomas, married Mary Furey [Come Ashore].

– Wm. THOS. KIELEY 30 [1878] & MARY ELLEN FURY 24 [1884] married
May 24 1908 Witnesses Thos. Fury & Cecily Kieley. J. W. Donnelly. (#6)[17]

– JAMES KIELY (24) & Mary Ann [illegible] (24) married at Holyrood Jan 12 1895
Wtnss. John Kiely & Mary Ann Fewer. J. Murphy. (#1)[17]
1894 Jan. 12 Holyrood, JAMES KIELY 27 bachelor farmer RC
. . . Holyrood, MARY ANN WILLIAMS 24 spinster RC Holyrood
[Witnesses] John Kiely & Mary Ann Fewer [18]
Depending on which record is correct James Kiely was born circa 1871 or 1867.
See Note [19]

Sebastian Kiley, 09 Dec 1898, son of James Kiley and Mary Williams.[20]

I found this record in the 1921 New Bridge census. I don’t know how or if this Kielly family is connected to the Holyrood clan but Ann Grace is shown as being from Harbour Main. New Bridge[21] is in St Mary’s Bay. The baptism record for Michael (1888) shows Mary Ann Lewis as sponsor, and I’ve been told that the Lewis family in New Bridge is originally from Holyrood.

Michael . . 1887 March, 34 New Bridge
Margaret . .1886 July, 35 New Bridge
Annie . . .Dau – 1914 June, 7 – – New Bridge
Thos . . . Son – 1917 May, 4 – – -New Bridge
Michael . .Son – 1918 Aug, 3 – – -New Bridge
Patrick . .Son – 1920 May, 1 – – -New Bridge
Ann . . .Mother Widow – 1834 (sic) Dec, 82 (sic) Harbour Main
1921 New Bridge census[21a]

22nd bapt’d 25th Mar 1888- Michael of Michael Kielly & Ann (Grace)[22]
Lawrence King Mary Ann Lewis – Priest – John J. St. John – Salmonier
Note for Michael Kielly: Married Margaret Power, St. Joseph, 3rd? Feb 1913

1. NL GenWeb, "1835 Voter's List: North Point of Turk's Gut to
McGrath's House on the South Side of Holy Rood"
[http: //]

2. NL GenWeb, "1864 Hutchinson's Directory" Holyrood

3. NL GenWeb, "Electoral District of Conception Bay - Division of
Harbor Main, October 20th 1874" webpage

4.NL GenWeb, "Southern District of Conception Bay, Division of
Harbour Main 1882, Holyrood" webpage

5.NL GenWeb, "Southern District of Conception Bay, Division of
Harbour Main 1885, Holyrood" webpage

6. The incorrect spelling of the name as Keeley makes a transcribing
error unlikely, but just for the record, I think it's possible that
this could be PAUL KELLY who is listed as a Householder in the 1889 [7]
Voters List for Holyrood, North Arm; and with his wife Agnes Lewis,
had three baptisms listed in the Sts Peter and Paul parish register
in Harbour Main for 1880, 1881 and 1883. 

7. NLGenWeb, "Conception Bay North Region - Harbour Main District,
1889 List of Electors - Holyrood North Arm" - webpage
[Note: the link showes 1899 but goes to the 1889 list.]

8. NLGenWeb, "Conception Bay North Region - Harbour Main District,
1889 List of Electors - Holyrood Central" - webpage
[Note: the link showes 1899 but goes to the 1889 list.]

9. NL GenWeb, "1894 McAlpine's Directory, Conception Bay North Region
- Harbour Main District, Holyrood", - webpage

10. NL GenWeb, "1898 McAlpine's Directory, Conception Bay North
- Harbour Main District Holyrood" - webpage

11. NL GenWeb, "1904 McAlpine's Directory, Conception Bay North
- Harbour Main District Holyrood" - webpage

12. Sts Peter and Paul RC Baptisms, Grand Banks Genealogy
- Harbour Main District website []

13. Source: Evelyn Morrissey - Holy Cross Baptisms.

14. 1921 census, "Newfoundland's Grand Banks Genealogy, Listing for
Harbour Main District Communities" : main index page, see Holyrood
South []

15. Collection: MASSACHUSETTS MARRIAGES, 1841-1915
Event: Marriage 	Event Date: 08 Jan 1907
Event Place: Springfield, , Massachusetts
Gender: Male	Age: 28		Birth Date: 1879
Birthplace: , , Newfoundland
Marriage Registration Place: Springfield, , Massachusetts
Estimated Birth Year: 1879
Spouse's Father: MICHAEL WALSH	Spouse's Mother: MARY POWERS
Record Number: 15347 Film Number: 2315299
Digital Folder Number: 4329357 Image Number: 00965 Number of Images: 1

16. Collection: OHIO DEATHS, 1908-1953
Name: RAYMOND A. KILEY	Death Date: 24 Oct 1929
Death Place: Ashtabula, Ashtabula, Ohio
Birth Date: 30 Oct 1907		Birthplace: Buffalo, New York
Death Age: 21 years 11 months 24 days
Gender: Male	Marital Status: Single	Race or Color: Caucasian
Occupation: Electrician
Burial Date: 02 Nov 1929	Burial Place: Holy Road N. F.
Cemetery Name: Holy Road
Father's Name: JOHN KILEY	Father's Birthplace: Holy Road, N. F.
Mother's Name: ANNIE WALSH, Mother's Birthplace: NORTH HARBOR, N. F.
Film Number: 1992017
Digital Folder Number: 4022358 Image Number: 2294
Certificate Number: fn 62116

17. NL GenWeb, "Conception Bay North Region ~ Harbour Main District
Holyrood Roman Catholic Marriages 1883 - 1909" webpage

18. NL GenWeb, "Newfoundland Vital Statistics - Book 18 (Selected
Entries) Marriages - 1891 - 1896" - webpage

19. Note: A possible explanation (aside from a transcription error)
for the discrepancies between these two records is that they were
actually taken from two different sources by the researcher. The
source of Reference #17, Holyrood RC Marriages at the Provincial
Archives, was either a bound book of photocopied parish register
pages or a microfilmed copy of that book. The source of Reference
#18 originated at the Dept. of Vital Statistics, and these records
were copied by hand from the parish register and sent to that
government office by either the priest or his clerk. These records
were assembled into ledgers and were also microfilmed. 

20. Canada Births and Baptisms, 1661-1959 for Sebastian Kiley
Name: Sebastian Kiley
Gender: Male
Baptism/Christening Date:
Baptism/Christening Place:
Birth Date: 09 Dec 1898
Birthplace: Newfoundland, Canada
Father's Name: JAMES KILEY         Mother's Name: MARY WILLIAMS
Indexing Project (Batch) Number: I04672-8
System Origin: Canada-EASy
Source Film Number: 2133030
Reference Number: item 2 frame 1103
Collection: Canada Births and Baptisms, 1661-1959

21. Memorial University NL, Digital Archives - Images and text, 
"Encyclopedia of Newfoundland and Labrador, volume 4 [Extract: letter N]" 
PDF document [,4152]

NEW BRIDGE (pop. 1986, 71). New Bridge is an unincorporated community
on the southeastern shore of Salmonier Arm, St. Mary's Bay. Settlement 
first occurred on Kerwan's Point, a spit of land which forms a small 
harbour. Community tradition has it that the place was first settled 
by an Irish family named Kerwan. By the 1860s the Kerwans were 
joined by the Lewises, and later by families named McDonald (from 
Mount Carmel, across the Arm) and Ryan. Most people fished for a living.
The settlement was known as LITTLE HARBOUR, Salmonier until the early
1900s, when a concrete bridge replaced an old wooden one across the 
Little Harbour River. It was the parish priest, at nearby St. Joseph's qv, 
who reportedly renamed the community. 
~ New Bridge first appeared in the Census in 1911, with a population
of 120, having been previously enumerated under Salmonier. The Kerwan
name did not survive in New Bridge. In 1992 family names included Lewis, 
Bennett, Daley, McDonald and Ryan. St. Joseph's provided most services,
but prior to 1966 New Bridge had a one-room school that taught up to
grade eight (high school students would cross the Arm and board in Mount
~ Although settlement was originally concentrated around the harbour
and bridge, in 1992 most newer houses were north of the bridge, along
the road towards Forest Field and Mount Carmel. New Bridge's main 
employer was Daley's fish plant, supplied by the brothers' two 65-foot
~ The concrete bridge which gave the community its name has now 
become the "old bridge", its graceful arches stretching unused beside 
the angular structure built to replace it in 1972.
Michael Duggan (interview, Dec. 1991), Dianne Hickey (interview, Nov. 1991), 
Desmond Lewis, (interview, Dec. 1991), Eileen Lewis (interview, Dec. 1991), 
Census (1911-1991), Archives (A-7-1).

21a. 1921 census, "Newfoundland's Grand Banks Genealogy, Placentia and 
St. Mary's District" : main index page, see Census Information
[ : see New Bridge]

22. Newfoundland Grand Banks, "Baptismal Register of the Catholic St.
Joseph's Parish, St. Joseph's, Salmonier, St. Mary's Bay 1874 - 1899"
- webpage (Main Records Page [
1psm-parish-idx.shtml]) [
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2 Responses to Kieley

  1. Florence Careen Power says:

    Visited Ireland last year,met Kieleys who claimed to be related to Careens who came to NL 1834-35? lived in Dungarvan ,showed me the Careen farm .Any inf re Careen connection would be welcome

  2. Tara Kielley says:

    Hi, My name is Tara Kielley and I am trying to find out about my Family name. My fathers name is Kevin Joseph Kielley. His fathers name was Dominic John Kielly which I found in the 1921 Census from Holyrood South. He was born September 1894 and his fathers name was Thomas and he was born Aug 1865. I thought he was married to Mary Fury also born in 1865. I really would like to know if you may know anything that will help me?

    Thanks Tara

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