Hutchinson & Kenny

Family History


We really don’t know very much about our Hutchinson ancestors, other than, our first grandfather of that name was George Hutchinson, born in 1771 in Bailieborough, County Cavan, Ireland.  County Cavan is in the southern most part of what is today “Northern Ireland.”  Sadly, we do not even know the name of George’s wife, but they were married in Bailieborough in about 1797.  The Hutchinsons were protestants and members of the Church of Ireland.  Their last name, as well as the given names of the various family members, sound more English than traditional Irish and it seems reasonable to believe that their earlier ancestry probably came to Ireland as a part of the “Plantation” efforts of the English to encourage Protestants to move to Ireland to dilute the Catholic influence there.  We have identified five of their children, all of whom were born in Bailieborough:

     Thomas       b. about 1799

*    Isabella       b. 1801               d. between 1861 - 1871 Vankleek Hill, Prescott, Ontario, Canada

     George        b. 1803               d. 23 May 1867              Vankleek Hill, Prescott, Ontario, Canada

     James         b. about 1805     d. after 1833   (was living in Prescott Co., Ontario, Canada then)

     Mary Ann    b. about 1808

Church of Ireland in Bailieborough, County Cavan, Northern Ireland.  We are not sure of the date of this building but if it was standing when our Hutchinson family lived here then this is probably the church in which our Isabella was baptized, and perhaps others of preceding generations. 

The village of Bailieborough, County Cavan, Northern Ireland, as viewed from the Church of Ireland.

Whether the Hutchinsons were land-owners or not, we do not know, but they were probably farmers.  We do not know what motivated them to migrate to Canada, but it appears they came some time in the mid-1820s.  Ireland was a poor country with very limited opportunities for young families.  North America seemed like a potential utopia and beckoned to them to leave their homeland and try something new away from landlords and tyrants. 

Our earliest documents for any of this family after their arrival in Canada are found in Quebec, right along the Ottawa River and just across that river from the village of West Hawkesbury, Prescott County, Ontario.  Here we find the following marriages for three children of our George Hutchinson:

*    Isabella Hutchinson md. William Kenny on 20 Feb. 1828 in St. Andre Est. Argenteuil, Quebec. 

     George Hutchinson md. Fanny Janet Tweed on 8 July 1829 in West Hawkesbury, Prescott, Ont.

     Mary Ann Hutchinson md. Thomas Jones on 31 Oct. 1831 in Ottawa District, Ontario.

     James Hutchinson md. Elizabeth Goodlow bef. 1833 and were “of Grenville, Argenteuil, Que.”

This last couple had a daughter, Jane Hutchinson, who was born in Grenville, Argenteuil on 25 Feb 1833 but no record of the marriage of her parents has been found. 

{As an aside, while searching for our Hutchinson family in Quebec, we came across the St. Matthews Anglican Church situated on the north side of the Ottawa River in Grenville, Argenteuil, Quebec.  This is one of the towns where our Hutchinsons lived.  We did not find any of our immediate family buried here, but in the graveyard behind this church we found the following family all listed on a singled grave marker.  Note how closely the names of this family match those of our family.  It seems likely that the father of this Hutchinson family may well be very closely related to our family, but we have not yet found any document to directly link them, so this information is provided here as “interesting” but not connected.

     John Hutchinson     b. 10 May 1810 in Ireland     d. 29 Oct. 1904 Grenville, Argenteuil, Que

     Mary Ann Campbell   b. 1810 (or 1813--difficult to read)   d. 30 May 1872, Grenville, Que.

           Isabella Hutchinson  b. Oct. 1839                  d.  6 July 1903  Grenville, Que.

           Matilda Hutchinson   b. 1844                         d. 22 Sep 1939  Grenville, Que.

           George Hutchinson  b. abt. 1846 Grenville    d.

           Charlotte Hutchinson  b. 1852                        d.  9 May 1911 Grenville, Que.}

Our Isabella Hutchinson (daughter of George) was probably in her teens when the family migrated across the ocean and settled on one side or the other of the Ottawa River.  This waterway marks the division between French speaking Quebec, and English speaking Ontario.  One would think they were more likely to settle on the southern, English-speaking, side and they may have, but it appears some of them were found on both sides of the river.  There were a lot of Irish immigrants on both sides so the Hutchinsons could have found new friends wherever they chose to make their home.

It was on the north (Quebec) side of that river where we find a record of an Irishman by the name of William Kenny (sometimes incorrectly written as “Kenney” or “Kinney.”)  We know very little about him except that his father had previously died, and the house next to him was occupied by the “widow Kenny” --presumably William’s mother.  The record never gives her name and she probably died soon after the marriage of her son as we find no more mention of her.

As stated above, William Kenny and Isabella Hutchinson were married on 20 February 1828 in St. Andre Est, in Argenteuil, Quebec.  This was a protestant church in a beautiful setting along the Ottawa River.  William lived in this area and the fact that they met at all may indicate that the Hutchinsons also chose to live in this general area--on the Quebec side, at least for a time. 

Isabella was about 27 years old at the time of this wedding and William was probably about 30.  Soon after their marriage they moved up river, a short distance, to Chatham, Argenteuil, Quebec where their first two (out of a total of 6 known) children were born:

  1. *   Elizabeth Kenny  b. 9 Dec. 1828  Chatham, Argenteuil, Que.  d. 23 Apr 1920 Vankleek Hill, Ont

     Mary Ann Kenny    b. 26 Jun 1830  Chatham, Argenteuil, Que.  d. 29 Nov. 1830 Chatham, Que.

     William Kenny        b. 25 Mar 1832 Grenville, Argenteuil, Que.  

     Mary Jane Kenny   b. 7 Feb. 1834  Argenteuil, Que.     d. after 1905 in Winnepeg, Manitoba

     George Kenny        b. 24 May 1836  Argenteuil, Que.    d. after 1905 in Victoria, British Columbia

     Margaret Kenny    b. 6. July 1838  Grenville, Argenteuil, Que.  d. aft 1859 West Hawkesbury, Ont

{We found a marriage record for this last daughter, Margaret in West Hawkesbury, Prescott Co., Ontario, where she married John Shields on 16 Aug. 1859, but nothing has yet been found for this family after this wedding date and we don’t know where they chose to live.}

The last record we have found for William Kenny is from 1838 (the birth of his youngest daughter--Margaret.) He died some time between 1838 and 1861.  We have not found any record of him during that period, but in 1861 there was a census in which we found his family and William was definitely missing at that time.  It is most likely that he died in Argenteuil County, Quebec.

Isabella Hutchinson Kenny was living in Vankleek Hill, Prescott Co., Ontario in the 1861 census but was gone by the 1871 census, indicating that she most likely died during that decade.

George Hutchinson, the immigrant, died in Vankleek Hill, Prescott Co., Ont. on 6 May 1849 and was buried in the Greenwood Cemetery in Vankleek Hill.  He probably followed his daughter, Isabella Hutchinson Kenny, to this community as that is where she and her family resided.

Elizabeth Kenny, our ancestor, and the oldest child of William Kenny and Isabella Hutchinson, (born 9 Dec. 1828 in Chatham, Argenteuil, Quebec) was full-blooded Irish, but was born and raised in Canada.  In 1845 she married a recent Irish immigrant by the name of George Fitzpatrick (b.1815 in Knockroe Townland, Tubrid Parish, County Fermanagh, Ireland.  They were married in St. Phillippe-D’Argenteuil, Quebec.  Together this family had 16 children--nine sons and 7 daughters.  The first three of these were born somewhere in Ontario, but we have not found any records of their births.  By 1852 though, the family had settled in Vankleek Hill, Prescott County, Ontario where they made a good living by operating their farm, which they called the “Happy Hollow Farm” and is located about a mile NNE of Vankleek Hill. 

More can be found on this family in the Fitzpatrick Family History on this web-site.  Here we will simply mention that George Fitzpatrick died in Vankleek Hill on 11 Aug. 1880; and Elizabeth Kenny died there on 23 April 1920, after having been widowed for almost 40 years.  Both lie buried in the Greenwood Cemetery just west of the center of that village. 

Elizabeth Kenny Fitzpatrick

George Fitzpatrick

Anglican Church in Vankleek Hill, Ontario, Canada

Where the Kenny and Fitzpatrick families attended.

Grave marker for George and Elizabeth Kenny Fitzpatrick and some of their children

in the Greenwood Cemetery, Vankleek Hill, Ontario, Canada

The nine sons of George and Elizabeth Kenny Fitzpatrick

Framed and mounted on her wall in Vankleek Hill, Ont.

by their mother, Elizabeth Kenny Fitzpatrick.

(James is the great grandfather of Bette McDonald Nebeker)