Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Ivan was not surprised by the election results, but he and many of the people of the Finn Valley in Donegal, were obviously very disappointed none the less. A lot of the current research I am doing on the McCains is focused in Donegal. As I gather more and more data it appears that east Donegal is very likely the original ole sod of the McCains. They certainly were there in numbers earlier than I can find them in northwest Antrim. Just another surprise in my long odyssey of finding the McCains. Ivan was in touch with John McCain's people this summer.
Barry R McCain (i.e. Barra)
One of the interesting aspects of our McCain Clan is we sent immigrants from
Keith is a descendant of William John McKain (1760-1827) who arrived in
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Barra, wearing his official wizard's hat on the Square in Oxford, Mississippi
My younger son Conar.... Conar the Viking on Halloween night that is.
Donovan and I enjoying a pint... Donovan got his free, he walked into the pub, went up to the barman and said, 'Trick or Treat,' and held up his functioning drinking horn, the barman filled it with Samuel Adams ale, not bad.
Our family really enjoys Halloween as you can tell. Oxford is a nice place as the Square becomes full of people, many in costume, the pubs all open their doors so you hear music and people laughing and talking, and the weather last night was perfect, cool and crisp with a crescent moon in the sky. Fall in Mississippi is absolutely beautiful.
Barry R McCain
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
When we began this research we thought the McCain originated in northwest County Antrim but the DNA and primary sources now confirm that the McCains were in the Finn Valley very early, perhaps even in the 1500s. We may have had the tail wagging the dog. As I have travelled in Donegal to meet our McCain kin, I have observed there are many more McCains there than any other part of Ireland. Frank will be visiting McCains in Ireland and Scotland in the January.
Barry R McCain
Sunday, October 19, 2008
In attendance were descendants of Ezekial Richard McCain, Thomas Powers McCain and Amos Calvin McCain. They were three of the known sons of William McCain, son of Robert, the son of Hugh McCain, SR.
In all the visiting with the many questions, the one asked all the time was, "How are we related?" when I left Michigan on my driving trip to Arkansas, I had laid out my external hard drive with all of my Family Tree data. I could not give dates and places to anyone because I know that I would be giving out mis-information.
Anita McCain, sister of Billy McCain, Harold McCain, double first cousin to Anita and Billy
Sunday, September 7, 2008
The photo above was taken some years ago and shows four James McKanes, of Ontario, Canada, including our accomplished webmaster and moose hunter, Jim McKane (third from left). The older James McKane passed away on 2 February 1995. The youngest James in the photo now a lad of fifteen years. Jim our webmaster, again third from the left has one of the most lovely lakeside cottages to rent in Ontario, should any of you want a wonderful holiday (vacation to us Americans). Just visit Jim's website for details.
Address is here: http://www.mckane.ca/
One of the nicest aspect of our McCain family history research is we connected with our very large Canadian, branch of our family. We are hopeful or a reunion north of border some day soon.
Barry R McCain (c) 2008
Conar McCain (on the right) and Donovan McCain, outside of Uptown Coffee House, Oxford, Mississippi, very late Friday night, or perhaps Saturday Morning, on the 5th or 6th of September anno domini 2008. They stayed out that late... making me uncomfortable, I mean Conar is 14, but he seems to fit in so well with the Ole Miss gang. What's a father to do? Fortunately, they are a good crowd usually. We run a tight ship here in Oxford.
Both of them are professional musicians, they had played earlier that night on the set of a film, in which they were a band in scene of the film. Donovan is writing the score for the film in fact.
Living in Oxford, Mississippi, is good.Oxford is an interesting place to live in many ways. Opportunities are here which are not often in other small Southern towns. We have three sushi bars and our children can be in films, strange, but true, yet we are still small town Mississippi as it gets.
Their Irish Hanna made caps, I bought in Donegal Town, many thanks to Ivan Knox and Letitia Knox, of Corcam, Donegal for taking me to MaGee's to purchase them. They were the perfect Irish gift for the boys.
BTW, very proud of cousin John for picking Mrs Palin, very nice. She's very popular here in Mississippi. We feel like finally, one of us normal folk may have a turn.
Barry R McCain (c) 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
Friday, May 30, 2008
Jim McKane and his lovely wife Suzanne. Jim is the webmaster of the Ulster Heritage DNA Project and the McCain DNA Project. In short, he makes the magic work, to use the over 50 year old speak.
There is much to Jim, he's climbed Kilimanjaro in Africa and has 13 grandchildren to date; doing his bit to make sure we McCains not only survive, but prevail! I am jealous as I only have two grandchildren.
Jim is one of our Canadian McKanes, we have quite a few in our group in Ontario, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Good people each and every one, eh...
This photo taken this year during Jim's seasonal migration to Arizona.
Barry R McCain
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
This photo is of the burial monument of Esther Hamilton McKean, Edith Annie McKean and James McKean and was sent to me by William Roulston, one of the organisers of the upcoming Ulster American History Symposium in Omagh, County Tyrone. The stone is located in StJohnstown, in east Donegal. It once again shows the close relationship between the Hamiltons and the McCains. I would say there are easily seven Hamilton McCain marriages, possibly more. The McCain name was often written as McKean in times past, but said 'Mac Cain.'
Barry R McCain
© 2008 McCain
Sunday, May 4, 2008
When the McCain DNA Project began we did not know that the New England McKeens and McKeans were the same family as the New Brunswick McCains and Mississippi McCains, to our surprise the DNA testing revealed not only that they were the same family, but quite close kin as well. Jack McKeen was an early participant in the McCain DNA Project and because his McKeen family is so well documented his participation did much to further the research into the Mac Eáin family history.
Jack is now retired from the high tech field. Jack is a Trustee of New England Historic Genealogical Society, a member of Clan Donald USA and a member of the local historical society.
The picture below is the gravestone of that immigrant ancestor and his wife, Martha Cargill, in the Robie Street Cemetery in Truro, Nova Scotia. Both died on the same day, December 30, 1767.
Sunday, April 6, 2008
Video curtesy of Jamie Johnson
Thursday, March 20, 2008
The anglicised forms of the name include McCain, McCane, McKane, McKain, McKean, and McKeen. Confirming the Gaelic form of the name was difficult. While this may seem surprising, as noted previously there are at least two Gaelic names anglicised as McCain in Ulster. These names are Mac Catháin and Mac Eáin and to add to the complexity, these families were often living in the same districts. However, DNA research and a study of primary sources confirmed that the McCains originated from north Antrim east of the Bann River and were linked to the name Mac Eáin.
(right, a burial stone of a prominent McCain circa 1490s)
The McCains are a classic Gaelic patronymic clan. The Patriarch of the clan was named Eáin. Eáin was a popular form of Eóin in use in the Gaelic dialect of Argyll, the southern Isles, and parts of Ulster from the 15th Century onward, Eáin is a loan word to Gaelic from the Latin Ioannes via Aramaic and Hebrew y'hohanan, meaning 'Jehovah has favoured.'
An analysis of the DNA suggests this Patriarch lived circa 1350 to 1450 AD. DNA tests have also revealed that the Ulster McCains are related to several Gaelic families from mid-Argyll associated with historical Gallóglaigh kindreds. The Gallóglaigh were a hereditary professional military caste that played a major role in the history of Ireland circa 1225 AD to 1600 AD.
Irish Gallóglach wearing their unique conical helmet, an icon of their caste
McCains appear in the primary sources from the mid-1400s onward. They are mentioned in north Antrim by the 1500s and by the late 1600s a branch of them settled in east Donegal. They were part of the old Gaelic class yet some converted to the Presbyterian faith and took a leadership role in this community and yet other McCain families remained Catholic or Anglican.
From the late 1600s until the early 1800s the McCains were most numerous on the east side of the Bann valley, from Ballymoney north to Ballyrashane and Corbally, east to Dunluce and Dunseverick. The Donegal branch of the McCain family was located in the Finn Valley and around St Johnstown.
In 1718, groups of these McCains began to immigrate to the New World and they continued to throughout the 1700s, 1800s and 1900s. One family from this clan, the Ballymoney McKeans, were the progenitors of the 1718 Ulster Migration to the Colonies. The Ulster McCains families are now located throughout the United States, and are particularly numerous in the South. In Canada they are found in New Brunswick, Ontario, and Nova Scotia. One Donegal McCain family migrated to Scotland and the descendants now live outside Glasgow. In Ireland itself few remain and these are found around Coleraine, in Dublin, in east Donegal and northwest Tyrone.
The McCains are an energetic and successful clan and have distinguished themselves in many fields. They have produced frontiersmen, writers, historians, church leaders, musicians, sport champions, attorneys, doctors, entrepreneurs, business magnates, admirals, generals, and statesmen, and their saga continues.
The Clan McCain Website: http://maceain.ulsterheritage.com/
The Clan McCain Blog: http://maceain.blogspot.com/
Barry McCain © 2008
Wednesday, March 5, 2008
Barry R McCain
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
The Glasgow wing of our family include Joe McKane and his family and extended family. Now everyone read about Joe’s remarkable father, Francis McKane, and his ordeal of being a prisoner during World War II. The story actually continued on from there. Francis McKane was discharged on medical grounds in 1947, after being told he had only 6 to 12 months to live because he had contracted a bad case of tuberculosis while a POW. To have gone through the hell of being a prisoner, tortured and starved, then to survive only to find out your life was over, you would never have children, would never feel the fire of your own hearth. What a blow. But, not really, because you see Francis lived to be 81, passing away in 1998, he had 8 children, one of which is our Joe McKane who participated in the McCain DNA Project.
Joe lives in the Glasgow area and leads the very busy life of a physician. Joe’s family descend from James McKean that left Donegal circa 1846-47 and settled in the Renfrewshire mining are in the west of Scotland. As our readers know, the McCain clan has two branches, one in north Antrim, but then another large group in east Donegal, in the Finn Valley and around St Johnstown.
Friday, February 1, 2008
Francis McKane took the road of many McCains before him; he joined the military during the Depression years in Scotland. He entered the Royal Artillery and shipped out from Hong Kong in 1938, just in time to become involved in some of the hardest and most brutal fighting seen in WW II. He rose to the rank of Senior Sergeant with his own gunnery detachment. The world knows the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour on 7 December 1941, on the 8th they attacked Hong Kong and Francis McCain’s world changed forever. Francis has volunteered to act as spotter for his battery, which placed him in an obsolete biplane flying into the face of the fighting to observe the effects of his artillery. His battery was the last one to fall in the defence of Hong Kong and he went into four long years of very hard and cruel captivity. (photo right, Francis McKane 1938)
In September 1942 he and 1800 other POWs were locked in the hold of the Japanese transport the Lisbon Maru. They were the Allied prisoners that had been captured in Hong Kong nine months earlier. The Lisbon Maru was called the Hell Ship as the POWs were kept in appalling conditions of filth, disease and malnutrition. They were being transported to Japan as slave labour. On 1 October, 1942, the Lisbon Maru was spotting by the US Submarine Grouper off of Shanghai. The sub fired six torpedoes and immediately came under attack from Japanese patrol boots and aircraft and sank deep and quickly left the area. One torpedo struck the ship and exploded sending water pouring in. The US sub of course had no idea there were 1,800 Allied prisoners of war aboard, nor did they see the Japanese batten down the hatches over the holds as they abandoned ship in an attempt to drown these men. Over 850 POWs drowned. Francis McKane and a few others managed to get out using the breach made by the torpedo and through port holes. Francis McKane swam a very long way in shark infested waters, eventually making his way to a small island. There he was again taken prisoner by the Japanese. He spent the rest of the war as a slave labourer in the shipyards in Osaka, Japan, suffering tremendous cruelty and torture. The bombs that fell on Hiroshima and Nagasaki came just in time to save him and the other prisoners that were by that time walking skeletons, with their numbers shrinking daily.
Even with the Japanese capitulation he had a long road to get back home, with many sad experiences; he made it back to Scotland via Canada in 1946. Francis McKane is the father of Joe McKane of Glasgow, Scotland. Joe is a physician and participated in the McCain DNA Project. This line of McCains is from east Donegal, and immigrated to Scotland in the 19th Century.
(photo, Hong Kong being attacked, 8 Dec 1941)
Barry R McCain
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Saturday, January 19, 2008
Friday, January 18, 2008
Thursday, January 17, 2008
The Golden Wedding Anniversary photo of John Melbourne McCain and Ida Belle Dooley, taken on 13 October 1924 at their home in Pine Bluff, Jefferson County, Arkansas. Antrim McCains were early settlers in Arkansas and Texas. This photo sent in by Otis Evatt McCain, grandson of John Melbourne McCain.