Welcome to this site dedicated to the McGroartys of Donegal.
Database updated 1 April 2009.
Site updated 1 April 2009

Hello and welcome - whoever you are.

Since you have found this site, I assume that you are interested in the history of the McGroarty family, originating in County Donegal, Ireland.

I would be glad to have comments or contributions in the guestbook or, if you prefer, you may email me directly at johngoodfellow@btconnect.com . This is a personal site developed as a hobby purely for family history purposes. Be assured that no-one will be contacted for any commercial or exploitative reasons.

This is very definitely a "work in (slow) progress". Please come back from time to time to view developments.

Genealogy Research

I have been trying to trace my McGroarty ancestors and have managed, so far, to get records back to my Greatgrandfather, Bernard McGroarty (1856-1928), but can't so far authenticate any earlier connections. However, I have picked up a lot of family information during my research - some going back as far as 1746. I claim little credit (or blame) for most of the material on this site - I have simply stolen other people's info and then tried to publish as much as possible in one place so as to inform my own search and perhaps to be of use or interest to other researchers.

This family has significant historical associations in Co. Donegal, Ireland, and is recorded as early as the 6th century A.D. [ see under "Historical Stuff"].

The most common spelling of the name is "McGroarty" but there are a number of variations. [see under "The McGroarty Name" on the menu]. The name is now relatively uncommon in Ireland, but there are branches of the family to be found in Scotland and England with also a scattering in Australia and other places.

However, since the McGroartys seem largely to have forsaken "the oul' sod" in order to colonize America, I have managed to include a history of their attempts to outbreed the rest of the population there. A fairly extensive history of the American branch of the family can be found on this website under "U.S. McGroartys" on the side menu. 

You may like to look at the pages on "Notable McGroartys" and "Historical Stuff" - especially the latter which contains, among other things, a harrowing account of the terrible conditions which some of our ancestors and their neighbours had to endure in Donegal around the time of "The Famine" in the 1800s and which probably led to most of them emigrating.

If you are interested in tracing your family, I have provided a catalogue of individuals, (currently about 2700 which keeps getting expanded as I find more info. I have presented it as two lists, one by name in alphabetical order ["Name Lists"], and the other in family groups ["Family Trees"] insofar as I can identify them. I find it difficult to represent these in the traditional "tree" format in such a way that I can easily show them on a website, so I have adopted a different approach - check it out for yourself if you are interested.


Please be aware that civil registers of all births, deaths and marriages in Ireland only began in 1864; some "Protestant" marriages were recorded earlier, from about 1845. Most of these civil records were lost when the Public Record Office in Dublin was destroyed by fire in 1922.

Much of the early information on this site, therefore, comes from a variety of sources on the internet and from letters and other papers from personal family records which have been kindly sent to me. Although many of them are unverifiable from official records, I have been able to establish a good number of family relationships by collating at least two (and often more) independent sources. I have tried to avoid including any relationships based solely on hunches or guesswork. 

Unfortunately, when I started out I was not smart enough to keep a record of my sources, so, if you want to be really rigorous, most of the data should be regarded as anecdotal, unless you can verify it for yourself.