James Orr: Possible Irish Connection (52 Ancestors #11)

coat-of-arms-of-irelandConsidering my estimated 45% Irish DNA,1)AncestryDNA Ethnicity Estimate, 18 March 2015. you’d think that writing a post for “Luck of the Irish” would be a piece of cake (or a piece of Irish soda bread). Not the case. And, yes, I realize it’s just an estimate and that “Irish” DNA might not be specifically from the Emerald Isle. But good grief, 45%?! You’d think I have one line that just screams, “Hey! We’re Irish!!”

My challenge with identifying an Irish ancestor is that so many of them who supposedly came from there did so in the mid- to late-1700s. That’s not exactly an ideal time for finding records on either side of the pond. So there are lots of family histories and county histories saying “His father was from Ireland” with nothing to back it up.

Such is the case with James Orr, my 5th-great-grandfather. Correspondents and SAR applicants give his birth as “Ireland.” Sometimes they’re specific (sorta) and list it as “Northern Ireland.”

What I do know is that he married Mary Dale, probably in Maryland. They eventually moved to Fayette County, Pennsylvania, where James died circa 1815.2)Will Abstracts 1785-1815 Fayette County, Pennsylvania.

References   [ + ]

1. AncestryDNA Ethnicity Estimate, 18 March 2015.
2. Will Abstracts 1785-1815 Fayette County, Pennsylvania.

5 thoughts on “James Orr: Possible Irish Connection (52 Ancestors #11)

  1. Sandra Johnson

    My Hayes family which I am trying to connect to, came to Maryland from Ireland in the 1700’s. I guess I had better check on the history of that time period to see why they came.
    My husbands tree includes the Orr surname, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Ohio.

  2. Ann Lamb

    The name is the first clue, the time-frame is the second. He is an Ulster Scot/Scoch-Irish who emingrated during their great migration between 1710-1776. Go to Rootsweb.com, choose Mailing Lists, Search for a List: scotch-irish. (3rd one). Search the Archives (near bottom of window) for: “James Orr”. Here is a very useful posting with references by the irreplaceble admin: Linda Merle: http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/th/read/scotch-irish/1998-01/0885753992, and there are many more.

  3. Shannon

    Hello. I am an Orr and I go back to Alexander Orr born Belfast Ireland 1757/wife Margaret Ramsey. His father is James Patrick Orr of Ireland born about 1721 in Ireland. Is this the same James P Orr? He is my 7th x GGF.


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