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The History of the Giles Family

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The Prendergast Family

The name Prendergast is an Old English name in Ireland, dating to the arrival of the Norman warrior Maurice de Prendergast, who accompanied Strongbow and his invading Norman army in 1169.

The following are the Prendergast members of Calum's and Jamie's ancestry:

Maurice de Prendergast - 12th Century Norman knight...
John Prendergast (1??? - 18??)
Thomas Prendergast (18?? - 18??) married Brigid O' Donnell
Thomas Prendergast (1860 - 23/5/1936) married Mary O'Shea
Unknown Prendergast (18?? - bef 1911)
Unknown Prendergast (18?? - bef 1911)
Thomas Prendergast (1892 - aft 1940) 
Daniel Prendergast (1892 - 25/12/1972) married Ellen O' Dwyer 
Thomas Prendergast (19?? - 14/4/1986)
Mary Prendergast (19?? - Nov 2004)
Acquin Josephine Prendergast (19?? - 20/7/1995)
Ursula Prendergast (19?? - Nov 2004)
Winnifred Prendergast (19?? - )
Angela Prendergast (19?? - 7/7/2008)
Bridget 'Sis' Prendergast (1894 - aft 1911) married Paddy Halley 
Paul Prendergast (1895 - 1947) married Mary Murray Alice Prendergast (1898 -  3/6/1967) married Martin Dee
Mary 'Mollie' Prendergast (1900 - aft 1911) married [Unknown] English
Patrick Prendergast  (1858 - aft 1911) married i) Annie Hogan and ii) Unknown
Thomas Prendergast  (1894 - aft 1940)
Bridget Prendergast  (1898 - aft 1911)
Michael Francis Prendergast  (26/10/1898 - 26/1/1987) married Ellen Margaret Whelan
Michael Prendergast (19?? - )
Dennis Prendergast (19?? - 1989)
Ann Prendergast (19?? - )
Ellen Prendergast  (1901 - aft 1911)
Patrick Prendergast  (1906 - aft 1911)
Mary Pauline Prendergast (16/4/1932 - ) married Patrick Joseph Giles

NB: Family history charts can be accessed at

Maurice de Prendergast
12th Century
Maurice de Prendergast is believed to be the earliest progenitor of the Prendergast family in Ireland.
Maurice arrived in Ireland in 1169, one of the first settlers in the train of the Earl of Strongbow. He had sailed with 200 soldiers from his family home in Pembroke, Wales, where his family had settled after the Norman Conquest of 1066.
Maurice and his son Philip and grandson Gerald acquired extensive lands in Wexford, Cork, Limerick and Mayo, most of which duly passed via Geralds daughters to other men. On most of these lands, early branches of the family settled, who must have been relatives of the above mentioned lords. These were the ancestors of the later Prendergasts of Mayo and Wexford, while those of West Limerick exchanged their lands there for others in South Tipperary, and were the ancestors of the Prendergasts of that county. 
For a complete breakdown of the life story of Maurice de Prendergast and his Norman ancestors, visit Maurie Prendergast's Prendergast Origins page.
However, there is a bit of a gap between Maurice's sons and Calum's and Jamie's earliest, more recent Prendergast ancestor!

John Prendergast
1??? - after 1833
John Prendergast was Calum's and Jamie's four times great grandfather.
Little is known of John Prendergast as yet. In 1827 and 1833 he is noted in the Tithes Applotment books as residing at Kilonerry, the only member of the Prendergast family to hold land there. By 1851, his son Thomas had apparently taken over working the holding, as noted in Griffith's Valuation, although an article in the Munster Express on 9 JUN 1888, discussing the new arbitration scheme on rents in Carrick-on-Suir notes Mrs Prendergast of Killonerry as having paid rent for the land for some 50 years:
The Rev. Chairman said Mr. Dunphy deserved the thanks of all honest men. A case has turned up in our district - that of Mrs. Prendergast of Killonerry. The woman has 15 acres of land, and has paid for the last 50 years the enormous sum of 3,000 (oh, oh). She would continue to pay it if she had it, or could borrow it. Some people appear to have an objection to amicable settlements between landlord and tenant. Now, my neighbours, I wish that some one -  no matter if he were a Hottentot - would see justice done to Mrs. Prendergast. Cardinal Moran once said that in some cases the landlords ought to be made make restitution to their tenants for the unjust rents exacted from them. I believe that by Cardinal Moran, or any equity court in the world, this case would be considered one of plain robbery (hear, hear). The Rev. Chairman concluded by exhorting them to stick to the fight and never to recede from their present position until justice was done them.
John had at least one son:
Thomas Prendergast
b: 18?? - d: 18??

Thomas Prendergast
abt 1815 - abt 1870
Thomas Prendergast was Calum's and Jamie's four times great grandfather.
The first record noting the Prendergast family’s presence in Killonerry House is that found in 1850 via the published returns of Griffith's Primary Valuation of Ireland. In the original published return from 1850, we initially find John Prendergast's son Thomas listed as the holder of just over 22 acres on plot 8, held on a lease from a Robert Walsh Esquire, with the land having a rateable value of 26 10s. The accompanying map for the survey shows that Thomas held a portion of land to the far south east corner of the townland, which did not include Killonerry House at this point. However, that was not the end of the story, because shortly after the first publication, a second publication of the returns was issued towards the end of 1850 “as altered on appeal by the sub-commissioners”. In this we again find Thomas holding the same 22 acres, but this time from the Earl of Bessborough, not Robert Walsh, and with the rateable value reduced to 25 from 26 10s. But in the return we can now also see a second holding of land for Thomas, marked as plot 4, which was substantially larger, at over 119 acres, and valued at 150. It would seem that between the two editions of the publication, the Earl of Bessborough had gained direct control of the area as the landlord from Robert Walsh, and that following this Thomas had acquired this much larger holding in Killonerry, including Killonery House.
Subsequent revisions to ownership were entered into the Cancelled Land Books (held at the Valuation Office in Dublin). On the first page of the returns for Killonerry townland, covering revisions to ownership made in the 1850s, Thomas is noted is again as holding the larger plot 4, which is described as having expanded slightly from 119 acres to 128 acres, but his former plot 8 is now shown to be in the hands of a gentleman called Terence Whelan. It would seem that having acquired plot 4 in 1850, Thomas had almost immediately disposed of the older family holding.
On June 15th 1853 Thomas married Bridget Daniel or O'Donnell, a member of another prominent Roman Catholic family based within the civil parish of Whitechurch. One of the witnesses to their wedding in June 1853 was in fact Terence Whelan, almost certainly the same gentleman who purchased plot 8 around this time. The other witness was Margaret Cuddihy.
Over the next few years there were several newspaper stories and brief mentions in the local press about Thomas and Killonerry House. In 1859 the Kilkenny Journal and Carlow Post reported that a barn at the farm had been totally consumed in a fire “caused by a servant boy, who was after cleaning his master's horses for the night, having left a candle lighting in the barn when going to his supper”. There are also several regular articles about agricultural competitions organised by the Earl of Bessborough, with Thomas winning several prizes, such as a second place medal in October 1866 “for the best pen of five one-shear ewes”, as reported by the Waterford Mail.
An entry in the Registry of Deeds from 1892 shows that in 1867 Thomas was given a 31 year lease of the 128 acre holding by the Earl of Bessborough. This seems likely to have been a second lease, as Thomas had already gained possession of the same 128 acres in 1850, as noted earlier in Griffith's Valuation.
The next major recorded development concerning the property follows Thomas' death in 1870. As the Cancelled Land Books for the 1870s show, Thomas' name was scored out and his wife Bridget listed as the new tenant of the Earl of Bessborough. The land was later purchased outright by Bridget from the Earl of Bessborough in 1893, at which point it became held in fee (outright ownership) by her.
Bridget eventually passed away in 1903 at Killonerry House.
Mary Anne Prendergast
b: abt 15 Feb 1853
Mary Anne, or Anne, was baptised on February 15th 1853 in the parish of Templeorum. Her parents were Thomas Prendergast and Bridget Daniel, who resided at Kilonerry. The sponsors were Richard Prendergast and Marian Cuddihy.
Thomas Prendergast
b: abt 6 Mar 1855
Thomas was baptised on March 6th 1855 in the parish of Templeorum. His parents were Thomas Prendergast and Bridget Daniel, who resided at Kilonerry. The sponsors were Michael Neil and Ellen MacGrath.
This Thomas died in infancy.
Patrick Prendergast
b: abt 17 Mar 1857  d: after 1911
Patrick was baptised on March 17th 1857 in the parish of Templeorum. His parents were Thomas Prendergast and Bridget Daniel, who resided at Kilonerry. The sponsors were Thomas Magrath and Bridget Whealan. (The baptism transcript on RootsIreland also states that he married Johanna Flynn on May 5th 1912).
Patrick married a lady called Annie Hogan, and had at least five children - Thomas, Bridget, Michael, Ellen and Patrick.

Patrick Prendergast's farm at Killonerry

In the 1901 census, Patrick was listed as a 44 year old farmer at Killonerry, head of family, Roman Catholic, able to read and write, and married, born in County Kilkenny. With him were his 38 year old wife Annie, born in Tipperary, his six year old scholar son Thomas (able to read and write), 5 year old scholar daughter Bridget (abe to read and write), 2 year old son Michael (unable to read) and 1 year old daughter Ellen. The children were all Catholic and born in County Kilkenny, though there is no answer recorded as to whether they could all speak Irish or not. Also present in the house were two farm servants, 50 year old Patrick Barry from County Kilkenny, and 15 year old Bridget Donovan, from Tipperary. The enumerator was RIC Constable Patrick Haran.
The building return from the same census shows that Patrick's brother and his family stayed in the same farmhouse, with Patrick the owner of the property. There were 11 outbuildings to the main property, and between 10 and 12 rooms in the main farmhouse - Patrick and his family, 8 people in total, occupied 6 rooms, Thomas and his family, 9 people in total, occupied another five. The front of the house displayed 14 windows, and the house was listed as '1st Class'. The return specifically states that 2 families lived in the house. The household schedule was picked up by Constable Haran, the enumerator, on April 4th 1901.
Kilonerry farm was also noted as located in the parish of Whitechurch, the barony of Iverk, the townland of Killonerry, district electoiral division of Whitechurch, poor law union of Carrick-on-Suir, parliamentary division of South Kilkenny and county of Kilkenny.
Patrick's wife Annie is not listed in the 1911 census, having died shortly after the 1901 census. Patrick's age is here now given as 53 and he is noted as a farmer and widower, from County Kilkenny. He was unable to speak in Irish. In addition to his family there were two servants, Johanna Flynn, aged 50, and Martin Flynn, aged 22, both from County Waterford.
Curiously though, the brothers' situation is not only different, but the information on the main farm building at Killonerry is itself very different. The families of both Patrick and Thomas are now listed in different properties, and each of the brothers recorded as landowners. Patrick's house is described as '1st class' having 9 rooms occupied by the family, and just seven windows now at the front. This contrast with Thomas's '2nd class' house, with 5 windows at the front and 6 rooms occupied by the family. It is known that the brothers did part ways and a second home was set up on part of the Killonerry farm land, so this clearly happened between 1901 and 1911.
Patrick remarried, giving the stepmother control of his children and of Killonerry House. The name of his second wife is as yet unknown. According to Patrick's granddaughter Ann Vreeland (nee Prendergast), her father Michael never had much to say about his stepmother, who was apparently not the warmest of people.
In 1922, the property was passed on to Patrick's son, which may well indicate that Patrick had passed away at this stage.
Thomas Prendergast
b: 1894  d: after 1940
Thomas was born at the family farm of Killonerry, in the parish of Whitechurch, County Kilkenny, Ireland, in approximately 1894.
In the 1901 census he was listed at Killonerry as a 6 year old scholar, able to read and write, Roman Catholic and born in County Kilkenny. In the 1911 census Thomas was now noted as a farmer's son, Roman Catholic, 16, unmarried, and unable to speak in Gaelic.
In 1922 the original farm at Killonerry was passed into Thomas' ownership, as noted in the Valuation Office revision books in Dublin. Four years later, in 1926, Thomas sold part of the land to a neighbour, Philip O' Dwyer, with the land rated at 25 a year.
It is possible that Thomas joined the Third Tipperary Brigade of the Irish Republican Army and fought during the War of Independence (see below) as well as the Irish civil war. The Military Archives website ( has suggested this in a company membership list that was drawn up for subsequent pension purposes which shows him to have been a member of the Brigade's 8th Battalion K Company, or 'Killonerry Company'. A Thomas Prendergast is noted, along with several of the Killonerry Prendergasts, however it is not known if this was Thomas, son of Patrick, or Thomas, son of Thomas. The membership list records Thomas on two dates, July 11th 1921 and July 1st 1922. (Source: IRA Membership file MA-MSPC-RO-152, Military Archives, Cathal Brugha Barracks)
Thomas was most certainly caught up in the struggle, however. The following extraordinary article from July 20th 1934 relates his involvement in a 1922 civil war battle which later became known as the Battle of Carrick, a three day fight between a couple of hundred republican Irregulars and the Free State Army:
Thomas Prendergast, Kilonery House, near Carrick-on-Suir, was applicant in a claim for 107 17s 3d for damage done to his house and property during a big engagement between the Free State troops and the forces against them in July or August, 1922.
Mr. Budd B.L. (instructed by Mr. Power, solr., Carrick-on-Suir), for the applicant.
Dr. Crotty said he understood that the case was not being heard until the following day. He had an official of the Board of Works coming from Waterford to give evidence, and he was not prepared to close his case that day.
Mr. Budd submitted a map of the scene of the occurrence and said the Free State troops came out from Waterford and were operating on the slopes at the back of Carrick-on-Suir.
Applicant said that he was an active sympathiser with the I.R.A. and then his sympathies went to those who opposed the Free State forces after the Treaty. He was actually out driving for them. He was advised by his solicitors not to apply for compensation under the 1923 Act. He was not at home in July or August. He was there some time previous to July and the damage for which he now claimed compensation was not then done. The Irregular troops were encamped at a wood by a tributary of the Suir near his house. Col. Prout and the Free State troops came up from Waterford and there was a three days battle during which the Free State troops occupied the house. Applicant was arrested on the day they arrived and kept in an outhouse. He found all this damage when he came back. He was claiming for repairs to the floor, joists, windows, skirting, plastering etc. Applicant had got an estimate for repairs from a Carrick-on-Suir firm. He had deducted 60 per cent from the estimate for joinery because he admitted the woodwork in the house was old at the time. In the case of the plastering he had deducted 50 per cent. There were also certain articles taken away by the troops - an overcoat, suits of clothes and pairs of boots. He had paid 10 for the two suits of clothes and regarded them being worth half price at the time they were taken. He was also claiming halfprice in respect of some shirts. He was claiming 3 for a mahogany dining table, and he was also claiming for a mahogany washstand, four mahogany chairs, mattresses, covers, quilts. Practically all the delph and china in the house was broken. He claimed 5 for this item, as well as 1 10s. for mechanic's tools. Other articles taken included two razors and three pairs of lace curtains out of which the troops made stockings (laughter).
Cross-examined by Dr. Crotty applicant said he had no direct evidence that these things were taken away. They were there on a certain date and they were not there afterwards.
Dr. Crotty - What did the Free State troops want with a mahogany table?
Applicant - As far as I know they were scarce of material.
They took it for burning? - Yes.
Thomas Prendergast, uncle of the applicant, said he lived near Kilonery House, and saw the troops breaking out the windows in July or August, 1922. The various articles for which applicant claimed compensation were in the house before the Free State troops occupied it. He saw the house afterwards and it was a teetotal wreck. "In fact," said witness, "myself was worth it."
Mr. Budd - You were a total wreck too?
Witness - They killed all my cattle.
Did you get compensation? - I did.
Dr. Crotty - Did you know what was in your nephew's house?
Witness - I did not exactly know. I knew there was furniture in the house.
Continuing, witness said the house was not as good as ever it was. There was still traces of the damage remaining. The floors in some of the rooms had not yet been repaired.
Thomas Brown, mason, said he did some repair work in applicant's house prior to the damage in respect of which the claim was made. Having regard to its age, the house was then in good condition.
Pierce Nolan (Messrs Nolan and Sons, building contractors, Carrick-on-Suir), said he had made an estimate with regard to damage done to the house. The floors were in good repair before the place was occupied by the troops. Dances had been held there previously. There was heavy rain at the time and he understood the troops pulled up the boards to light a fire at which to dry their clothes.
Dr. Crotty - Your estimate for repairs is a speculative one?
Witness - No: it is based on what I saw.
Dr. Crotty then asked that the remainder of the case be held over until the following day for the attendance of his witness.
Arthur Walsh, Board of Works, Waterford, said he saw applicant's house and went through it. It was a large substantial farmhouse. Nothing had been done to repair it. The floors were broken and the ceilings blackened. He did not know how much of the present damage was attributable to what happened in the troubled times. The house was practically empty and there was no furniture in it. His estimate for repairs was 56 17s 6d.
Mr. Budd said that was only 4 more than their estimate. The house was a mansion with stone steps leading up to it, and not a farm-house.
The Judge said the applicant's estimate for the damage done to the house and the goods destroyed was a reasonable one. He would report for 102. 3 expenses were allowed.
It should be noted that Pierce Nolan, the witness building contractor, was in fact the uncle (by marriage) of Paddy Giles, Calum's and Jamie's grandfather.
The Valuation Office revision books for the area note "house almost derelict" for Killonerry farm in 1939, implying that the repairs may not have been made following the award of damages. The property then appears to have bene sold to a William and J. Dowley in 1946. 
Bridget Prendergast
b: abt 1895
Bridget was born at the family farm at Killonerry, in the parish of Whitechurch, County Kilkenny, Ireland, in approximately 1895.
In the 1901 census she was listed at Killonerry as a 5 year old scholar, able to read and write, Roman Catholic and born in County Kilkenny.
The 1911 census noted that Bridget, still at Killonerry, could read and write, but could not speak in Gaelic.
Michael Francis Prendergast
b: 26/10/1898
Michael was born on October 26th 1898 at the family farm at Killonerry, in the parish of Whitechurch, County Kilkenny, Ireland. On his birth certificate, his father, the informant to the registrar in Carrick-on-Suir on November 4th, was noted as a farmer (1898/CARRICK-ON-SUIR/Q4//4/455). 
Michael is noted as living at the farm in Killonerry in both the 1901 and 1911 censuses, and would no doubt have spent his youth preoccupied with school studies and day to day farm work. He could read and write, according to the 1911 census, where he was noted as a scholar, but he had no Gaelic.

Michael (middle) with the IRA Third Tipperary Brigade

Michael's daughter Ann Vreeland contacted us in October 2005 to provide further details on her father, for which we are extremely grateful. During the War of Independence, also known as the Anglo-Irish War, Michael joined the Third Tipperary Brigade of the Irish Republican Army, fighting against the British State for a free Ireland based on republican principles. The Military Archives website ( has confirmed this in the form of a company membership list that was drawn up for subsequent pension purposes which shows Michael to have been a member of the Brigade's 8th Battalion K Company, or 'Killonerry Company', along with several of his Prendergast cousins (Source: IRA Membership file MA-MSPC-RO-152, Military Archives, Cathal Brugha). Other companies in the 8th Battalion included Carrick, Faugheen, Grangemockler, Kilcash, Kilsheelan, Ballyneale, Windgap, Rathgormack, Clonea-Power, Mothel and Piltown.
By 1920 there were about 100 members of the British army based in Carrick-on-Suir, alongside 30 members of the RIC and members of the Black and Tans. As the IRA's guerilla campiagn for independence escalated, many police stations and barracks were abandoned by the British, and their premises burned by the republicans to prevent reoccupation. On November 20th, undercover agents were assassinated by the IRA in Dublin, prompting the British army to retaliate by shooting unarmed civilians at a Gaelic football match at Croke Park. The result was a massive escalation of the IRA campaign - and Killonerry was right in the middle of it. From the book Carrick-on-Suir and its People by Patrick C. Power (1975):
The year 1921 began with an attack by the Killonerry Company on a mixed force of police and military in Cregg - 20 men in all. The fifteen badly-armed attackers kept up the action until nightfall when the government forces retired with four wounded. They left some weapons behind which were eagerly seized. The same company attacked a much larger force next day near Tibroughney and a long fight ensued in which the attackers were nearly surrounded. With nightfall the British retired but next day they made a reconaissance in force which was halted by a trenched roadway. Here they once more attacked and one man killed.
It is not known whether Michael or his cousins were involved in this incident, but it would seem likely. The membership list records Michael on two dates, July 11th 1921 and July 1st 1922. It also notes that he was later in the USA. By 1921, a treaty was proposed by the British that would divide the island of Ireland into two states, the northern six Protestant majority counties of Antrim, Down, Armagh, Fermanagh, Tyrone and Londonderry forming Northern Ireland, and the 26 majority Catholic counties of the south becoming the Irish Free State. The Treaty vote split the Irish Catholic voters into two camps, pro-Treaty and against the Treaty, with the pro-Treaty faction winning. The British withdrew from the 26 southern counties, now the Irish Free State, a country that had Dominion Status within the British Commonwealth. But many members of the IRA, who had voted against partition, refused to accept the Treaty and saw the new Free Staters as traitors to the Republican cause. The result was the declaration of civil war between the two opposing Treaty parties, with the Free Staters finally winning the war against the 'Irregulars'.
Michael's daughter Ann knows very little of her father's activities as a member of the IRA, mainly because he remained so secretive about his activities. It is believed that he may have been a member of an IRA flying column known as the Galtee Mountain Boys, though this is as yet unconfirmed. At one stage Michael and other volunteers are known to have buried some rifles in Tipperary, and to his dying day he refused to say where they were located. It is also not known if he was involved in the Battle of Carrick-on-Suir, and the warfare at Killonerry (see above), but it seems incredibly likely. Following the Irregulars' defeat, Michael went on the run in Ireland, and was eventually forced to flee the country.
[For more on the Third Tipperary Brigade, click on the following link: Third Tipperary Brigade

Michael's wedding to Ellen Whelan in 1944

Michael travelled to Canada, and from there to the United States of America, where he settled in New York. On June 15th 1944, he married Ellen Margaret Whelan in the Church of St. Elizabeth, New York City. Ellen was a native of Cahir in Tipperary, and had previously been taken to the States by her aunt, Nellie Sullivan. The witnesses to the wedding were Denis Whelan and Marcella Kreson. The couple settled and had a family of three children.
In 1978, thirty years after the Irish Free State had finally thrown off its dominion status to become a republic, Michael and Ellen decided to retire back to their native land, settling back in Ellen's home town of Cahir. 
Michael finally passed away on January 26th 1987, and was buried in Cahir, outside the church across from Cahir Castle. Ellen was also buried in the same churchyard.
Michael Prendergast
b: 19??
Michael was born in the United States. He joined the US Navy, and when he left the navy decided not to return to the States. He worked around the world, and took his first visit to Ireland in 1978, where after meeting many family members and falling in love with the country, decided to buy a piece of property up a mountain road near Clonmel, where he built a house which he named Killonery House II. He still lives in Clonmel today.
Dennis Prendergast
b: 19??  d: 1989
Dennis had a history of heart problems. After his death in the United States, his sister Ann took his body to the Republic of Ireland and buried him alongside their parents in Cahir, County Tipperary.
Ann Prendergast
b: 19??
Ann was born in the United States, and still lives in Rutland, Vermont.
A huge thanks to Ann for providing so much information on her branch of the Prendergast family. Ann can be contacted at the following e-mail address:
Ellen Prendergast
b: 1900

Ellen was born at the family farm at Killonerry, in the parish of Whitechurch, County Kilkenny, Ireland, in approximately 19001.

In the 1901 census she was listed at Killonerry as 1 year old, Roman Catholic and born in County Kilkenny.

In the 1911 census Ellen was by now recorded as a 10 year old scholar, able to read and write, but without any Irish.


Patrick Prendergast
b: 1906

Patrick was born at the family farm at Killonerry, in the parish of Whitechurch, County Kilkenny, Ireland, in approximately 1906. In the 1911 census he was a 5 year old scholar, could read and write, but had no Irish.

Thomas Prendergast
b: abt 24 Aug 1858
Calum's and Jamie's great great grandfather - see below.
Margaret Prendergast
b: abt 1 Apr 1862
Margaret was baptised on April 1st 1862 in the parish of Templeorum. Her parents were Thomas Prendergast and Bridget Daniel, who resided at Kilonerry. The sponsors were Daniel MacGrath and Ellen Nellie.

Thomas Prendergast
abt 24/8/1858 - 23/5/1936

Thomas Prendergast was Calum's and Jamie's great great grandfather.

Thomas was baptised in the County Kilkenny parish of Templeorum on 24 AUG 1858, with his address noted as Kilonerry. His parents were Thomas Prendergast and Bridget Daniel, whilst the sponsors were John Burke and Anne Prendergast.
Thomas married Mary Shea, daughter of Daniel Shea, on November 26th 1888 in the parish of Templeorum. The civil marriage record notes both as being farmers in Killonerry of full age, with the witnesses noted as William O' Donnell and Hannah Barden. Thomas' father was Thomas Prendergast, farmer (GRO Ireland, 1888, M, Group Reg ID 2482355, Carrick-on-Suir). The Roman Catholic church certificate for the marriage, however, shows Thomas residing at Kilonerry and Mary as having come from Bawngarriff. The witnesses in this document were James Daniel and Sarah Barden (RootsIreland). After the wedding the couple settled in the Prendergast family farm at Killonerry, where they raised their family.
In the 1901 census, Thomas is recorded at Killonerry as a 42 year old farmer, head of family, Roman Catholic (listed as 'Catholice'), able to read and write but not able to speak in Irish, and born in County Kilkenny. With him were his 37 year old wife Mary from Kilkenny (can read and write), children Thomas aged 9 (scholar, can read and write), Daniel aged 9 also (scholar, able to read and write), Bridget aged 8 (scholar, can read and write), Paul aged 6 (scholar, can read and write), Alice aged 3 (cannot read) and Mary aged 1 (cannot read). Also in the house was 13 year old farm servant Bridget Houlihan, Catholic and from County Waterford (can read and write).
In the 1911 census, the whole family is again located at Killonerry. Thomas was 50, a farmer, and noted as able to read and write, and as a Roman Catholic, unable to speak in Gaelic. With him were six children, but the record states that they had had a further two children no longer alive. Also in the farm was 30 year old servant Margaret Hearn, from Kilkenny, able to speak in English and Gaelic.
In 1934 the revision books from the Valuation Office in Dublin show that Thomas passed on possession of his farm at Killonerry to his son Daniel. The farm's rateable value at this stage was 77 (7 for the house, the rest for the land).
Thomas died on Saturday 23rd May 1936, and it is believed that he was interred in Piltown Cemetery. The Munster Express of May 29th carried a short notice and tribute to him on his death (p.1):
The death occurred on Saturday of Mr. Thomas Prendergast, Killonerry, Carrick-on-Suir. Deceased was one of the best-known and most respected farmers in the district and was very popular. His home was the centre of much activity during the Anglo-Irish war in which himself and his sons and daughters took an active part.
There was a very large attendance at the funeral to Piltown, where interment took place after Requiem Mass. Deceased was brother of Mr. P. Prendergast, Kilonerry, and father of Messrs. Daniel, Thomas and Paul Prendergast, and of Misses B. and M. Prendergast, and Mrs. Dee, Kilonerry.
Spoken to in August 2004, Thomas' granddaughter Winnifred recalled that Thomas was "a fine man with a bit of a temper"!
Unknown Prendergast
b: 18??
This unknown child was deceased by the time of the 1911 census, which clearly shows that Thomas and Mary had had eight children, with only six still alive by then.
Thomas Prendergast
b: 2/10/1889  d: bef 1901
This son Thomas was born on 22 OCT 1889 at New Street, Carrick-on-Suir, the son of Thomas Prendergast, farmer, and Mary Shea. His mother was the informant to the registrar. Thomas was subsequently baptised in Carrick on 8 FEB 1890.
It would seem that Thomas died in infancy, as a later brother was christened with the same name. He is also not to be found in the 1901 or 1911 census returns.
Daniel Prendergast
b: 4/9/1891  d: 25/12/1972
Daniel was Thomas' twin brother, and was baptised into the Roman Catholic faith in the parish of Templeorum, Co. Kilkenny, on September 4th 1891, being resident at that point at Killonerry. The sponsors at his christening were Michael Phelan and Bridgid Shea. His parents were noted as Thomas Prendergast and Mary Shea (Source IFHF).
Daniel is recorded with the family at Killonerry in both the the 1901 and 1911 censues, but could not speak in Gaelic. In 1911 he was a farmer's son by occupation (Source: National Archives of Ireland).
Daniel joined the Third Tipperary Brigade of the Irish Republican Army and fought during the War of Independence. The Military Archives website ( has confirmed this in the form of a company membership list that was drawn up for subsequent pension purposes which shows him to have been a member of the Brigade's 8th Battalion K Company, or 'Killonerry Company', along with several other members of the extended Prendergast family. The membership list records Daniel as a member on two dates, July 11th 1921 and July 1st 1922. (Source: IRA Membership Series, file MA-MSPC-RO-152,, Cathal Brugha). He may well have been one of those involved in the Battle of Carrick in mid-1922, though the brigade activity books for Tipperary have yet to be made available online.
In 1934 the Valuation Office revision books in Dublin note that Daniel took possession of his father's farm at Killonerry.

Daniel's grave in Piltown

Daniel married Ellen Angela O' Dwyer, daughter of John O' Dwyer, and the couple settled at the farm in Killonerry. An article from the Munster Express of February 11th 1949 (p.7) gives some more on Ellen's background, through the death notice of her sister:
The death occurred at Greenwich Hospital, Conn., U.S.A., of Miss Kathleen O' Dwyer, daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. John O' Dwyer, Cappahayden, Callan. She is survived by her sisters, Mrs. John Corr, Bawnlusk, Cuffesgrange, Mrs. Prendergast, Killonerry, and Nurse O' Dwyer, Tipperary. 
In the 1940 Electoral register for the area, Daniel is recorded at the farm with his wife, his father, and another Thomas Prendergast, either his twin brother or his only son. After the death of his father, Daniel took over the running of the farm altogether.
Daniel's wife Ellen died on September 3rd 1966 at the farm in Killonerry. A thank you notice was placed in the Munster Express on 7 OCT 1966:
PRENDERGAST. The husband and family of the late Ellen Prendergast, Killonerry, Carrick-on-Suir, wish to thank most sincerely all those who sympathised with them in their recent sad bereavement; special thanks are due to those who sent Mass cards and messages of sympathy, and those who attended the removal of the remains, Requiem Mass and funeral. Trusting this will be accepted by all in grateful acknowledgement. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass will be offered for their intentions.
There was also a short news item in the same edition (p.20):
Late Mrs. Ellen Prendergast. -
The death took place rather suddenly at her residence, Kilonerry, Carrick-on-Suir, of Mrs. Ellen Prendergast, wife of Mr. Daniel Prendergast, who is well-known in local farming circles. Deceased had been in poor health for some time past. Sincere sympathy is extended to the relatives. She was sister of Mr. Philip O'Dwyer, Cregg, Carrick-on-Suir, and mother of Thomas Prendergast, Kilonerry, Miss Acquin Prendergast, Winifred, Ursula and Mary Prendergast. The remains were removed to Piltown Church. Requiem Mass was celebrated by Very Rev. Fr. Teehan, P.P., and the interment took place in the adjoining churchyard. R.I.P.
Daniel eventually passed away on December 25th 1972.
Both Daniel and Ellen were buried in Piltown Cemetery, and in subsequent years were later joined by both Thomas and Aquin Josephine.
Thomas Prendergast
b: 19??  d: 14/4/1986
Thomas is buried in Piltown Cemetery, Piltown, County Kilkenny, Republic of Ireland. It is believed that he had no children.
The following death notice for Tommy appeared in the Irish Independent (Tuesday, 21st April, 1986, p.21):
PRENDERGAST (Killonerry, Carrick-on-Suir) - April 14, 1986, at the County and City Infirmary, Waterford, Thomas, son of the late Dan and Ellen Prendergast, deeply regretted by his sorrowing sisters, relatives and friends. R.I.P. Remains will be removed to Piltown Church this (Tuesday) evening leaving hospital at 7.30 o'c. Requiem Mass to-morrow (Wednesday) at 11 o'c. Interment in adjoining cemetery immediately afterwards.  
Mary Prendergast
b: 19??  d: Nov 2004
Mary died in England just two days before her sister Ursula back in Ireland.
Acquin Josephine Prendergast
b: 19??  d: 20/7/1995
Acquin is buried in Piltown Cemetery, Piltown, County Kilkenny, Republic of Ireland. It is believed that Acquin had no children.
The following burial notice appeared in the Irish Independent on the following day (Friday, July 21st 1995, p.31):
PRENDERGAST (Killonerry, Carrick-on-Suir) - July 20, 1995, at her residence, Acquin J. (Josephine), daughter of the late Daniel and Ellen, and sister of the late Tommy: deeply regretted by her loving sisters Mary, Ursula, Winifred, and Angela, brother-in-law Michael Murphy, relatives and friends. R.I.P. Remains will be removed from Walsh's Funeral Home, today (Friday) at 8.30 o'c, to Piltown Church. Requiem Mass tomorrow (Saturday) at 12 o'c. Burial in adjoining cemetery immediately afterwards.
Ursula Prendergast
b: 19??  d: Nov 2004
On September 15th 1961, Ursula was noted in the Munster Express as having come second in a competition for the growth of crimson Bramley apples (p.2). She was noted as Miss Ursula Prendergast, Kilonerry.
Ursula married at some stage after this to Michael Murphy.
Ursula eventually passed away just two days after her sister, Mary, having suffered severe arthritis for many years. She is believed to have had no children.
Winnifred Prendergast
b: 19??
Winnifred, or 'Winnie' as she is more colloquially known, was born and raised at Killonerry Farm, County Kilkenny, and is the second youngest of Daniel's children.
On August 16th 1960, Winnie attended the wedding of her cousin Mary Pauline Prendergast and Paddy Giles, Calum's and Jamie's grandparents, at Piltown Church of Assumption, and also attended the subsequent wedding breakfast at Clonmel.
In October 2004, Calum's and Jamie's father had a brief phone conversation with Winnie at Killonerry farm, who was able to confirm the Prendergast family history stated here, as well as clear up the story of when the original Prendergast farm was divided. Many thanks to Winnie for her help.
Angela Prendergast
b: 19??  d: 7/7/2008
Angela was the youngest of Daniel's children. She never married and passed away on July 7th 2008. The website lists Angela' passing as follows:
The death has occurred of Angela PRENDERGAST of Kilonerry, Piltown, Kilkenny.
Removal from Walsh's funeral home, Carrick-on-Suir, tomorrow, Tuesday, evening at 8pm to The Church of the Assumption, Piltown. Requiem Mass on Wednesday morning at 11am. Burial immediately afterwards in the adjoining cemetery.
Date published: Monday, July 07, 2008
Date of death: Monday, July 07, 2008
Thomas Prendergast
b: 4/9/1891  d: 19??
Thomas was Daniel's twin brother, and was baptised into the Roman Catholic faith in the parish of Templeorum, Co. Kilkenny, on September 4th 1891, being resident at that point at Killonerry. The sponsors at his christening were Michael Phelan and Catherine Ronan. His parents were noted as Thomas Prendergast and Mary Shea (Source IFHF).
Thomas is recorded with the family at Killonerry in both the the 1901 and 1911 censuses, but could not speak in Gaelic. In 1911 he was a farmer's son by occupation.
It is likely that this is the Thomas recorded at Killonerry in the 1940 Electoral Register.
Bridget Prendergast
b: abt 18/1/1894  d: after 1911
Bridget was baptised in the County Waterford parish of Tramore on 18 JAN 1894, the record noting her residence as Picardstown, and her parents as Thomas Prendergast and Mary Shea. The sponsors were John O'Donnell and Margaret O'Donnell. Bridget's niece, Mary Pauline Prendergast, recalls that her aunt was known more colloquially as "Sis". 
In about 1896 Bridget moved with her family back to the Prendergast farm at Killonerry. In both the 1901 and 1911 censuses she was recorded at Killonerry, and erroneously noted as aged 8 in 1901. In the 1911 census it was further noted that she could speak in both Gaelic and English, and she was single. No occupation was noted for her.
Bridget married a gentleman called Paddy Halley, but it is not yet known if they had any children.
Paul Prendergast
b: 1895  d: 1947
Calum's and Jamie's great grandfather - see below.
Patrick Prendergast
b: 18/7/1896
Patrick was baptised into the Roman Catholic faith on July 18th 1896 in the parish of Templeorum, Co. Kilkenny, and was resident at Kilonery. His parents were Thomas Prendergast and Mary Shea, and his sponors were William Daniel and Annie Prendergast (Source IFHF).
Alice Prendergast
b: 9/4/1898  d: 3/6/1967
Alice was baptised into the Roman Catholic faith on April 9th 1898 in the parish of Templeorum, Co. Kilkenny, and her usual residence being Killonery farm. Her parents were noted as Thomas Prendergast and Mary O' Shea, and the spnsors as James Burke and Bridget Burke (Source IFHF).
In the 1901 census Alice was noted as aged 3 at Killonerry. In the 1911 census for Killonerry it was noted that she could speak in both Gaelic and English, and that she was single.

Alice Prendergast's grave in Piltown

At some stage prior to 1932, Alice married Martin Dee, who was seven years older than her, and the son of Thomas and Mary Dee, of Tinvane, Carrick-on-Suir. It is possible that this was the same Martin Dee shown in a file held at the Military Archives in Cathal Brugha to be a member of K Company (Killonerry Company) of the 8th Battalion of the 3rd Tipperary Brigade of the IRA, during the War of Independence (Source: IRA Membership file MA-MSPC-RO-152, Military Archives, Cathal Brugha). In 1932, Alice and Martin had a son, whom they named Thomas Dee. It is not yet known if they had any further children.
In the 1940 Electoral Register for Carrick-on-Suir, both Alice and Martin are recorded as still living at Tinvane.
Martin eventually died on July 2nd 1952, and was intestate. An inventory was drawn up on February 26th 1954 and 269 granted through a letter of administration to his widow Alice through the court at Waterford (Source: National Archives of Ireland). Alice herself continued on until June 3rd 1967. Both were buried in Piltown Cemetery.
Thomas Dee
b: 1932  d: 16/10/2000
Thomas died on October 16th 2000 and was subsequently buried in Piltown Cemetery alongside his mother and father. As well as the gravestone shown above, two further memorials were added to the grave top:

Thomas Dee

A smile for us all
A heart of gold
One of the best
This world could hold
From Billy, Jillian,
Darren and Wayne
Loving Memory of
Loving and kind in all of
his ways, upright and just to
the end of his days, sincere
and true in heart and mind
a beautiful memory
left behind
Mary 'Mollie' Prendergast
b: 14/12/1899  d: after 1911 
Mary was known to her niece, Mary Pauline Prendergast, as Aunt Mollie. She was baprtised into the Roman Catholic faith on December 14th 1899 in the parish of Templeorum, Co. Kilkenny, with her usual residence noted as Killonery farm. Her parents were noted as Thomas Prendergast and Mary Shea, and the sponsors as Michael McGrath and Mary Burke (Source: IFHF).
In the 1901 census she was recorded as aged 1 and at Killonerry. As a youngster, she apparently used to make butter at the farm at Killonerry.
In later years, Mollie emigrated to the United States, where she married a gentleman by the surname of English, and together they raised a family there. The Munster Express of June 25th 1954 recorded a visit of Mollie back to Ireland from the States (p.12):
Mrs. English, formerly Miss Mollie Prendergast, of Killonerry, is on a visit to her family, after an absence of many years in the United States. She is staying with her sister, Mrs. Alice Dee, Tinvane. She is a sister of Mr. Dan Prendergast, and an aunt of Thomas Dee.
It is known that Mollie has at least one granddaughter called Patricia MacLeod, but her whereabouts are currently unknown.
The following newspaper article from the Munster Express (Friday, July 22nd 1949, p.8) mentions another members of the Prendergast family from Killonerry, still to be placed, who very nearly drowned in 1949:
Narrow Escape From Drowning 
Whilst swimming in the River Suir at a place locally known as the "Coal Yard", Tybroughney, a youth named P. Prendergast, Killonerry, had a narrow escape from downing (sic) when he got into difficulties. The tide was fast ebbing at the time, and he was being carried away by a strong under-current. Two companions, R. Dowley, son of Mr Louis Dowley, Tybroughney Castle, and Larry Walsh, Three Bridges, immediately went to his assistance, and, with much difficulty, succeeded in bringing young Prendergast to the river bank, where he remained for some time in a semi-conscious condition. Great credit is due to the rescuers for their prompt action, which saved the life of the drowning man, who had gone down for the second time.

Paul Prendergast 
9/6/1895 - 18/9/1949

Paul was Calum's and Jamie's great grandfather.

Paul was born on 9 SEP 1895 at the family farm of Killonerry, and was noted as the son of Thomas Prendergast, farmer, and Mary Shea. His mother registered the birth in Piltown, Carrick-on-Suir union, on 11 OCT 1895 (GROI, B, 1895, Group Reg ID 9882365 Carrick-on-Suir).

In both the 1901 and 1911 censuses Paul is recorded as living at Kilonerry with his parents, brothers and sisters. In 1911 it is noted that he could speak both English and Gaelic (Source: National Archives of Ireland).

When Paul was growing up, his best friend was his distant cousin John O' Donnell, who lived in the adjoining farm in Killonerry. 

With his older brother Daniel helping their father to run the family farm, Paul took up work as a ploughman at Purcell's Farm, Killonerry, just up the road from his own home. From a Munster Express death notice of Paul's father Thomas in 1936, it appears that Paul, along with his father and brothers, was heavily involved on the republican side in the Anglo-Irish War, and on the side of the Irregulars in the Irish Civil War also.

Paul married Mary Murray on 26 OCT 1932 in Owning Roman Catholic Church, County Kilkenny. At the time of his wedding, he was listed as a 35 year old farmer living in Killonerry, and son of Thomas Prendergast, farmer, whilst Mary was a 23 year old servant resident at Three Bridges, and daughter of Lawrence Murray, farmer. The witnesses to the wedding were John Moore and Bridget Duggan, whilst the officiating priest was Father James Comerford (GROI 1932 M Group Reg ID 1429908 Thomastown).

Paul eventually died on 18 SEP 1949 at the County Hospital, Kilkenny, aged 55. His usual address was given as Ballyhenebry, Piltown, and the cause of death was cardiac failure, and pulmonary embellism (?). The informant was M. Oliver O' Hare of the hospital. The record erroneously notes that Paul was a bachelor, however, his sister Alice Dee corrected the registrar's entry on 11 NOV 1949 via a statutory declaration to G. Mitchel in Piltown registry office (GROI D 1949 Group Reg ID .2322624 Kilkenny No.1).

After Paul died, he left his most expensive personal item, his plough, to his only daughter, Pauline. The Munster Express carried an item on his death on September 30th 1949 (p.8):


The death took place recently at Kilonerry, of Mr. Paul Prendergast, youngest son of the late Mr. Thomas Prendergast. His death removed from the neighbourhood a member of one of the oldest Co. Kilkenny families. Deceased was extremely popular, and the very large attendance at the funeral and interment testified to the esteem in which he was held.

Pau's widow Mary survived until 5 MAR 1978, residing in Piltown, Co. Kilkenny.


Mary Pauline Prendergast
b: 16/4/1932

Calum's and Jamie's grandmother - see below.


Mary Pauline Prendergast
16/4/1932 -

Pauline and her granny, Ellen Murray (nee Gorman), late 1930s

Pauline was born at home at Three Bridges, on the outskirts of Piltown, Co. Kilkenny, on April 16th 1932.

As a child, Pauline remembers having to fetch water from the river that flowed past the house. She even cycled to the river and returned to the house with a bucket filled with water on each handlebar!

Pauline's mother was a cleaner and she remembers accompanying her as she went to work. She also remembers that during the Second World War the family had to endure rationing, despite Ireland's neutrality during the conflict. Her father died when she was fifteen and she was left a horse and plough in his will.

Pauline attended the Presentation Convent School in Carrick-on-Suir, and from a young age took to the stage, where she became a regular performer in Carrick for the next decade. The following story from the Munster Express names Pauline as one of the cast members in a production that became the talk of the town:

The Munster Express  Friday, May 6th 1949


Recent Performances at Presentation Convent, Carrick-on-Suir

The magnificent pageant of "The Message of Fatima", originally billed for four performances, had to be continued for the remainder of the week, in order to satisfy the demands of hundreds who were unable, through lack of space, to obtain even standing room on the first four nights. From every surrounding district, and even from places as far away as Waterford and Wexford, people came in cars and on bicycles, literally in droves; and each night the doors were besieged an hour before the curtain rose. Indeed, it was distressing to witness the disappointment with which so many had to go away each night, unable to find a seat in the spacious hall - from which to view an unforgettable representation of the miraculous appearance of Our Lady at the now world-famed Portuguese village. For this, in truth, was no ordinary "stage show", no ephemeral tinsel and glitter performance. Rather was it something with an inspiration; something imbued with a spiritual meaning and a sense of reverence which pervaded the auditorium from the opening hymn to the find vocal number "The Church". And in the living and moving episodes which marked the narration of how Our Lady appeared to the three priviliged children, the story of Fatima was brought home to the thronged audiences with such power and feeling that many were openly and unashamedly in tears each night - tears of compassion, tears of deep emotion, at so moving a story.

Therein, far more than in the success of the performance - great as that success undoubtedly was - lay the reward of the Sisters of the Presentation Order for their selfless work in the training of the choral numbers, and for the exquisite taste displayed in the costuming of principals, speakers, tableaux and choirs.

Possibly, the dominant feature of the entire production was the manner in which the Apparition was presented. Clever lighting effects made Our Lady's appearance most realistic, seeming to bring the Vision from a cloud-dimmed distance into full brilliance to finally fade out gradually, until nothing was visible but the hills of the Cova. The same artistci conception was excellently maintained in the three beautifully presented tableaux; and the realism of the various scenes added to the perfection of the acting of the little principal characters.

The part of Our Lady was taken impressively by Bernie Cooney; that of the child Jesus in breath-taking realism by Mary Morrissey; and that of St. Joseph in restrained dignity by Anna Connolly. The finely sustained, natural acting of Betty Carroll, Helen Sheehan and Maureen McGrath in the parts of the three children: Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco, respectively, could not be bettered. Breda Morrissey and Maureen Halloran shared the honours in the part of the Angel of Peace - a striking and very beautfiul part. In the parts of the children's mothers, Mary Lacey and Monica Garey were most effective; Joan McGrath gave a robust rendering of the part of the Sub-Prefect, as did Pauline Prendergast as Don Almelda. Marie Doherty as a neighbour; and Ursula Driscoll, Honor Morrissey and Anne Keeffe acted convincingly as the neighbours' children.

The choir, so beautifully trained by the nuns, was skilfully handled by Mrs J. Jacques, the talented organist at The Friary, whose artistry is so well-known that praise is hardly necessary; yet her rendering of the sacred music, the effectiveness of her conducting, and the musical throughness of her organ accompaniments cannot be allowed to pass without a sincere compliment. last, but by no means least, must be mentioned the speakers. It was as though a single voice spoke the sentences with a purity of diction which was a pleasure to hear.

The lighting, which added so much to the very effective representation, was in the capable hands of Messrs. T. Morrissey and Burke; the make-up was in the charge of Messrs. T. Tobin and J. Walsh, whose skill and experience in this difficult art are so well-known. The scenery, which made the task of effective representation of the Vision, a possibility, was excellently executed by Mr. Dick Casey, as were the stage settings by Messrs. Nolan and sons.

To all who assisted, to Miss Hurley, who had charge of the booking, and to the stewards and back-stage workers, all of whom gave their services so unstintingly, the community desire to express sincere thanks; as also to Very Rev. N. Canon Dunphy, P.P., and to Rev. E. J. Ryan and Rev. J. Harty, who all gave their eloquent testimony to their appreciation of what was a truly memorable and impressive representation.


After her studies at school, pauline went on to the local technical school to continue her studies, sitting her exams in 1953. At the age of 22, Pauline was awarded a medal the following year for the highest score in the whole of the Republic of Ireland for an economic geography exam. It is also believed that she came second in the whole country for her Irish language exam. The following article within the Munster Express explains her success and the reaction of the headmaster:

The Munster Express  Friday, January 29th 1954 p.9

School Function at Carrick-on-Suir


A new and highly creditable innovation to school life was initiated at the local technical Schools, Carrick-on-Suir, when Holy Mass was celebrated in the Institute on Thursday of last week by Very Rev. Canon O'Byrne, P.P., V.F., Chairman of the local sub-committee of Vocational Education. The Mass was attended by members of the local Sub-Committee, staff, and pupils.

At the subsequent distribution of certificates and prizes, Very Rev. Canon O'Byrne paid tribute to the excellence of the instruction imparted by the teachers; he paid spcecial tribute to the harmony and co-operation existing between teachers and pupils. The excellence of the results in themselves bore testimony to that unity of purpose existing. He extended sincere congratulations to the many recipients of certificates in the various grades. He was very pleased to observe the remarkable successes achieved in Home Building subjects, Woodwork, Cookery, Needlework, and Domestic Science. He extended special congratulations to Pauline Prendergast for the signal honour she had achieved in securing First Place in Eire and Department's Cash Prize in Economic Geography (Advanced Stage). This was a unique distinction. Proficiency in these subjects of Home Craft, Woodwork, Commerce, Trades, and General Education will give the opportunity to future parents of leisurely occupation and essential material benefits.

Mr. D. O' Suilliobhain, headmaster, formally proposed the vote of thanks to Very Rev. Canon O' Brien, for his attendance and patronage. He expressed his personal satisfaction of the general results achieved in 1953. The results in themselves indicate the keen progressive interest of the pupils in subjects of technical education. These results were the results of hard work and intensive preparation. One hundred and twelve certificates were awarded, bearing testimony to the keenness of study in the various departments of the curriculum. He made special reference to the signal honour achieved for the school by Pauline Prendergast in securing first place in Eire in Economic Geography (Advanced Stage). The general results were highly satisfactory, and many of our pupils are now enjoying highly lucrative and promising appointments. He felt assured that, in virtue of the continued successes achieved at our Technical Schools, our Institute will continue to maintain an honoured place in the schedule of the Department's records of success.

Subsequent to the presentation of prizes, the following films were shown through the courtesy of the American Embassy: "Apprentice Train", "Diesel - the Modern Power", Bridging the Golden Gate", "Hurricane Circuits", "Sand and Flame", and "Tuberculosis".

Asfter doing a secretarial course, Pauline then worked as a secretary until 1960 at a place believed to have been called Walsh's. A keen singer, Pauline also became a member of the operatic society in Carrick-on-Suir, where she met the man who was to become her future husband, Patrick Joseph Giles, better known as Paddy.

Pauline appeared in many productions in the town's Ormonde Hall, including, and the following articles outline the performances as reported in the Munster Express. The first is from 1958:

The Munster Express, Friday January 24th 1958, p.12


The local Operatic Society's pantomime, "Sinbad the Sailor", concluded a six nights' runs at the Castle Cinema on Friday night last. It was a most successful production and and attracted record attendances. The producer, Mr. J. Moran, and the musical director, Mrs J. Shelly, are to be congratulated. The following filled principal parts with distinction: J. McGettigan (Alibad), Pat Power (Ali Worse), Anne Gough (Jasmina), Mrs Peg Power (Sinbad), Joe Foley (Sinbad Catfish), Dick Meany (Captain Horatio Andy), Mrs Bridget Hannon (Fortune-teller), Pauline Prendergast (Herald), Paddy Finucane (King Nabucko), Junior Nolan (Prince Hassan), Mossy Casey (Chief Wolf Fang), Tom O' Keeffe (Headman), Pat Drohan (Witchdoctor), Christy Butler (Gorilla), Nicholas Dalton (Black Abdulla), and Breda Shortiss (Princess Lotus Blossom).


In 1960, Pauline went on to appear in an epic production of HMS Pinafore in the town, with Paddy in tow! Her photograph also appeared in the paper, as did paddy's (see Giles page):

The Munster Express  January 15th 1960
Delightful Production By Local Operatic Society
The people of Carrick-on-Suir may well feel proud of the prominent and progressivepart which is being played in the cultural life of the township by the local Amateur Operatic Society. To the long chain of previous successes, andother golden link was added this week, when, as their eighteenth production, they selected Gilbert and Sullivan's ever-green and always welcome "H.M.S.Pinafore". And, in every phase of its delightful presentation, it has captivated all who have derived such unalloyed pleasure from its staging in the Ormonde Hall, from its opening performance last Sunday night. Nor have we any hesitation in prediciting that it will continue to do so until the curtain is made to ring down on its final offering next Sunday night.
(There will be no production to-morrow (Saturday) night).
A departure from the pantomime, which was favoured for several years past, the society made a particularly happy choice on this occasion, for they gave us a "Pianoforce" that was well-nigh perfect. For the first time, too, they introduced two guest artistes, in the selection of which they exercised a soundness of discrenment that paid handsome dividends in the intense warmth of the enthusiasm with which they were received each night by the packed audience.
One of these was Minica Condron, who has filled a number of leading roles with the Dublin Grand Opera Society. As Josephine (the Captain's daughter), she was playing a part for which her vocal gifts and histrionic attributes so well equip her. There was a finished artistry about her singing and her acting which left behind memories that will linger long with those who heard, saw and applauded her with such spontaneous fervour and sustained approval.
The other guest principal, Michael Murphy, as Ralph Rackstraw (Able Seaman) did not come quite as a stranger from his native Cobh. For quite some time past, he was featured on the Mitchelstown Creamery's sponsored programmes from Radio Eireann, and in that respect, the reputation which he has won for himself as an excpetionally fine tenor, had preceded him. But, how different it was now hearing him at much closer "range" and being regaled by him with such a flawless and all-satisfying interpretation of the haunting arias which he sand with such consumate ease and impressive abaility, thus adding a major contribution to the scintillating progress of this most acceptable Gilbert and Sullivan work.
Apart from these two, the remainder of the cast was recruited entirley from local talent. And what an abundance of it there must be in Carrick! In the supporting roles, and in the choral work, all these amateurs, without exception, rose to the big occasion in a manner that won the golden opinions of all.
As Sir Joseph Porter, K.C.B., Pat Power, in addition to infusing into his part the essential ingredient of humour, spoke his lines with a clarity that was good to hear - and enjoy. The part of Captain Corcoran was very ably sustained by "Junior" Nolan, always a favourite; while that ominous character, Dick Deadeye, was very effectively portrayed by Eugene Nolan. Dick Meany and John Dalton proved themselves true sons of the Navy; and who can forget the part of the part of the Midshipmite as undertaken so successfully by John Walsh as Tom Tucker (and hornpipe specialist).
And what of the ladies (God bless' em!). B. Hannon's Little Buttercup was a delicious offering, as pleasing and fascinating as one could wish for. And then we had two other accomplished stage personalities in Margaret O' Donoghue and B. O'Brien, who found themselves happily at home when they doubled in the role of Hebe (Sir Joseph's Cousin).
Those who comprised the chorus covered themselves with glory throughout. Indeed, in this department, Carrick can boast a collection of male and female voices which blends delightfully. This results in a most appealing tonal quality and a harmonious ensemble of voices that is really good to hear. One got the impression that behind the merit of their work, lay careful and competent training.
Under the baton of Mr. J. Moran - who was also responsible for the production - the high standard set by the orchestra was in keeping with the all-round excellence of a memorable performance. As musical director and pianiste, Mrs. J. Shelly filled her dual role with impeccable success.
Greatly admired by the audiences were the ingenuity of the prodcuer in the manner in which he adapted the rather small stage to mee the demands of such a presentation; the brilliant lighting, which helped to show up the attractive setting to best advantage, and the beautiful costumes and stage make-up, all of which absolutley defied criticism.
On this latest triumph of the Carrick Amateur Operatic Society, heartiest congratulations are extended. By every member of the Society, and particularly by the indefatigable President Rev. J. harty, CC., whose great work in the cause of music is so well known, they were never more richly deserved.
Chorus of the First Lords, Sisters, Cousins and Aunts: Mmes. Hurly and Murphy; Misses A. Power, E. Murphy, A. Doherty, M. Doherty and M. Fahey, B. O'Sullivan, P. Rainsford, P. Prendergast, P. McGarry, M. Thompson, A. Hannon, A. Carroll, D. Carroll, P. Danagher, M. O'Halloran, I. Crowley, M. O'Brien, F. Torpey, M. Coady.
Chorus of Seamen and Marines: T. Power, R. Meany, J. Nolan, P. Drohan, B. Mulvaney, M. Nolan, D. Carroll, J. Dalton, B. Kavanagh, P. Giles, E. Nolan, T. O'Keefe, P. Finucane, C. O'Driscoll, H. O'Driscoll, J. Drohan, J. Hurley, N. Treacey. J. Aylward.
Conductor, Mr. J. Moran; First Violins, Mrs T. Parle and Mr. D. O' Callaghan; cello, Messrs J. Power and V. Cleary; Trumpet, Mr. J. carroll; Clarinet, Mr. P. Coady; Horn, Mr. R. Lyons; Trombone, Mr. M. Coady; Organ. Mr. M. Inglesby; Piano, Mrs J. Shelly.


The ladies of HMS Pinafore (God Bless 'Em!) - Pauline is 2nd from the left

On 16th August 1960, Pauline married Paddy. The following article appeared in the Munster Express, describing the wedding:


The marriage took place with Nuptial Mass and Papal Blessing at the Church of the Assumption, Piltown last week of Mr.Patrick Giles, William Street, Carrick-on-Suir and Miss Pauline Prendergast, Three Bridges, Carrick-on-Suir. The ceremony was performed by Rev.Fr.Phelan, C.C. Mr John OBrien, was best man and the bride was attended by Miss Ann Nolan (cousin of the groom) and Miss Nan Quinn.

A reception took place at the Ormonde Hotel, Clonmel, where many friends and relatives of the newly married couple were entertained.
During the ceremony, the bride was attired in a white ballet length frock, with matching headdress, and carried a bouquet of red carnations. The bridesmaids wore lavender brocade ballet length frocks.

Both the bride and groom are extremely popular figures in Carrick-on-Suir. The honeymoon is being spent in Dublin.

After their honeymoon, in fact spent in both Dublin and on the Isle of Man, the couple set up home in Three Bridges, along with Pauline's mother and grandmother. The first of their eleven children, Rosella was born the following year. In 1969 the family moved to a council house in Hillcrest Avenue, Piltown, which they bought seven years later.

Pauline's husband Paddy died on 19th April 2001, and is sorely missed. Pauline continues to live in Piltown, keeping the village tidy and working at the Credit Union, where she has worked for years, and being the best grandmother on this side of the Irish Sea!!!



Rosella Marie Giles


Patrick Gerard Giles


Anita Josephine Giles


Lucy Helen Giles


Cecelia Mary Giles


Majella Angela Giles


Paul Henry Giles


Gerard Martin Giles


Claire Patricia Giles

Claire is Calum's and Jamie's mother - see Giles page.


Desmond John Giles


Shane Thomas Patrick Giles


Connecting to Calum and Jamie

Mary Pauline Prendergast married Patrick Joseph Giles in 1960.

Daughter, Claire Patricia Giles, married Christopher Mark Paton in 2000.

Sons, Calum Graham Paton and Jamie Christopher Paton.

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