Sunday, 10 January 2010

From Port Laoise to Dublin - early origins

20 North Brunswick Street, Dublin
From my mom Joan's memory the Lawlors originated from Port Laoise, a town in County Laoise (formerly Queens ) on the eastern side of the Slieve Bloom Mountains in the south of the Irish Midlands . A search of indexes at Joyce House in Dublin confirmed that both Kate Cushin and Denis Lawlor came from the area between the towns of Mountmellick and Port Laoise .

Joan also believes that parts of the family may have originated from County Cork. This is quite possible although Cork does lie many miles to the south of Laois on the other side of Counties Tipperary and Waterford. More recent evidence shows that the Lawlors may have had links with Cork through marriage with the Glavin family.

The Lawlor family lived at 92 Walsh Road in Drumcondra , Dublin from the 1940s until the 1990s . The house was sold shortly after the death of their youngest child Kevin who had inherited the family home with his two sisters Mamie and Lily .

North Brunswick Street

Prior to living at 92 Walsh Road the Lawlors lived at 20 North Brunswick Street in the north central 3 district of Dublin . In September 1995 Theresa and I walked along North Brunswick Street on a quick tour of Dublin and took photographs of the modern day street. North Brunswick Street is in a downtown , industrial area of the city, not far from the River Liffey and just around the corner from Bolton Street where the Whelans lived . There is a large Victorian looking hospital on the street which would have been there in the time that the Lawlors lived in the area , there are also some old and some new houses. On the site of 20 North Brunswick Street there is a small business premises . The area gives one the general impression of the proverbial 'Dirty Old Town' landscape .

James Lawlor (right) as an altar boy
Dublin circa. 1920



  1. My great grandmother was Eliza(beth) Lalor/Lawlor from Queens/Laois born around 1848-1855, depending on the record. She had a brother Christopher born around 1845. They both died in Chicago, Illinois, USA in the 1920s. There is also a Margaret Lawlor Whalen in Chicago, that I believe is their sister. She was born around 1852-1856. (They emigrated around 1870.)
    I wonder if any of these names have shown up in your research and if we could possbly be related.
    I found one family on an LDS film that seems like it COULD be the family, but I don't have anything conclusive.
    There was a Denis Lawlor/Lalor married to Ellen Bird in Ballymorris, Portarlington, Mountmellick, Lea, Laois. They had children Christopher, 1845;Eliza, 1848 ; Margaret, 1850; James, 1853; John, 1855; Brigid, 1858; Patrick, 1861; Ellen, 1863.
    Would appreciate hearing from you.

  2. Thank you for leaving your message Mary, especially so soon after I have posted this information up. I can't say at the moment if we are related. Most Lawlors originate from County Laois (formerly Queens). I have found some great 1911 census records recently on the Irish National archives website which are free to search and download at this link:

    I see your ancestors left Ireland long before 1911 but at least you may be able to find Lawlors in the areas they left. Also look at the Lawlor clan website where people leave messages:

    I will keep an eye out for more references and links.