View Full Version : Advice appreciated on searching for Irish Potato Famine Survivor

31-08-2006, 10:41 PM

I have a number of distant family members who have been on a quest for years searching for our common ancestor a Dorinda Saltry from Skreen, County Sligo. She came out on the ship the Barque, the Lady Kennaway in 1848 bearing 191 teenage girls all Famine victims to Williamstown in Victoria, Australia when she was 15, apparently the only survivor of her family. According to letters from the Chaperone on the ship, most of the girls were illiterate so their names were written phonetically. When Dorinda was asked her name it was written as Terendra Saltry. Her father is Cairns and her mother is Rebecca, surname unknown. Dorinda is said to have been born in 1833. From this there is a void. A Great Aunt has made a trip to Ireland from Australia on this quest and came home with no success. However, there must be some trace of her because my father was contacted by some dignataries from Ireland who officiated at a memorial unveiling at Williamstown Jetty in the 1980s. They had managed to track him down as one of her descendants and he was given a formal invitation to that commemoration. Dorinda Saltry is listed among the passengers on several website I have visited, but beyond this is a mystery. Sadly, she died in childbirth on Christmas day aged 32. We know nothing about her life in Ireland but she has many descendants around the world as far away as Canada. I have heard that many of the records were destroyed or just don't exist..so my question is since I'm in Australia, if my Great Aunt was unsuccessful in finding any traces of Dorinda's family upon her trip to Ireland, should I assume this is a dead end? I am posting this on the small chance that someone in the British Isles may have a Saltry from that area in their lineage, or know of sources to explore.

Kind Regards, Jenny

01-09-2006, 1:51 AM
Hi Jenny

Basically, the following catholic parish records exist so if you have access to an LDS Family History Centre you can order up and view the records there:

County Sligo
Diocese of Killala
Skreen & Dromard
Baptisms: Jan 1st, 1823 – Aug 9th, 1859
July 17th, 1848-Sept 29th, 1877
Sept 27th, 1877-Dec 31st, 1880
Marriages: Nov 13th, 1817-Feb 16th, 1860
Feb 12th 1878-Dec 11th, 1880
July 12th, 1848-Aug 18th, 1869
Burials: Sept 25th, 1825-Feb 29th, 1828
NLI Pos. 4229
LDS BFA 1279204, items 6-11 & BFA 926025

NLI = National Library of Ireland.
LDS = Latter Day Saints Library


01-09-2006, 1:56 AM
The online 1901 Irish census material has been 20% transcribed for Sligo. You can view the completion tables.
I searched just on Sligo county with no names entered and only one entry stood out mainly because they were the only ones with this name or anything like it, and the fact that the Head of Household was born in the 1830s, same as your girl:

Townland: Sligo T/Emmet Place
Parish: St Johns
Barony: Carbury
County: Sligo
Head of Household Surname: Saultry
Head of Household Given Name: David (65)
Occupation: Librarian/born Co Mayo
Others Enumerated in Household:
Margaret (54) wife/born Co Waterford
Nicholas (26) son/not married//watchmaker
Bedelia (24) or (34) dtr/not married

It’s a bit of a longshot but that’s the nearest to Saltry available, at least until the whole 1901 census comes online over the next few years.

Hope this helps, best wishes


01-09-2006, 2:05 AM
By the way, just in case you haven't already seen it, there is a Pedigree Resource File and an Ancestral File on the LDS site for Dorinda Saltry, submitted by a Marianne Jean Burt of Western Australia.

(Apologies if you already knew:D )



01-09-2006, 8:25 AM
Hi Brenda,

Thank you so much for taking the time to look at this, it has been so frustrating. But you helped greatly in giving me the Diocese. I went to the URLS you posted and apart from the LDS site, I couldn't find any leads, and what makes it more difficult is that Dorinda was the only survivor of her family. My father was in the LDS church but he is thousands of miles away and in a nursing home, so I will have to try and find someone to assist me, especially as I live in 20km out from a country town in Queensland. The other 2 entries submitted to the LDS were actually by my father some years ago and Marianne Jean Burt whom I not familiar with, has mistyped Dorinda's spouse name, it is Lemuel Etheldred Bryenton. Dorinda is my Great, Great, Grandmother.

Kind Regards, Jenny |angel|

03-09-2006, 7:42 AM
Hello again from Sunny Downunder,

I've just had an email from my Great Aunt who went to Ireland on the search for Dorinda Saltry and her parents Cairns and Rebecca. This is what she had to say.....

"Skreen is about 15 miles west of Sligo town. There is a huge protestant church and vicarage, a telephone box and a factory there and nothing else. I met the Church of Ireland minister who lived on the west coast. He visited the Skreen church. His records showed nothing. She may have been a Catholic - but a researcher found nothing in those records."

I guess I have a dead end if there is nothing in the parish records.


03-09-2006, 4:03 PM
Hi, have you tried this site, new stuff coming on it all the time.


somewhere on there is the details of the females sent out from ireland during the famine. Not sure how much detail it has!

I have some good info and advice on www.cmcrp.net about finding my irish ancestors.

Good luck

13-09-2006, 4:34 AM
Thank you Keren and everyone who posted about this..I have found a couple of Saltry's on those links but cannot find a connection with Dorinda or her father Cairns/Kearnes, I'm clutching at straws really.

I just received copies of 2 letters last week by way of my Great Aunt who had a researcher from the Hibernian Research Co.look at the Parish records and surrounding areas such as Easky, Ballymote, Achrony and St. John's. They say the surname Saltry is rare. These searches were carried out some time ago.There was one reference to a Kearns and Margaret Saltry with a son David, but our Kearn's wife was supposed to be Rebecca. Templeboy, Dromard, Achonry and Kiloran, Kilmacshalgan, Kilglass and Castleconor were also searched with no trace of her baptism. They say civil registrations commenced in 1864 and non Catholic marriages only were registered from 1845. Dorinda was born in 1833. A search was conducted in the General Registry office regarding deaths but no entries were found for Kearn's who died during the Potato Famine. The Sligo Family Research Society, Country Museum in Sligo was also contacted. 2 Saltry marriages were found but no record of Dorinda. It is thought that Dorinda or Dorenda's religion was Church of Ireland and that the name Saltry is English. My Aunt met with the Church of Ireland Minister on the West Coast and he paid a visit to Skreen and looked in the records for her and turned up with nothing. So armed with this noninformation I can only hope on a slim chance that someone may have this family in their lineage as it seems her records are simply not on record. I noted a few Saltry's in the IGI based in England which lends support to the surname's origin as an English one. Thank you once again.

Kind Regards,

14-09-2006, 11:13 AM
I've found a Saltry family from Ireland in 1861 & again in 1871 & 1881 (name changed to Salter then). Perhaps they are related to your family.
1861 RG9/285 folio 17 page 35, 1 Blue Anchor Alley, Ratcliff (St Dunstan parish), Stepney, Middlesex
James Saltry head M 30 labourer Ireland
Ellen Saltry wife M 25 Ireland
Margaret Saltry dau 1 Middlesex

1871 RG10/548 f63 p41
1881 RG11/464 f68 p44 In this, James gives his birthplace as Cork.

20-10-2006, 4:57 AM
Thank you everyone for your advice, it is truly appreciated. I have just registered with CuriousFox so will see how it pans out over time. One thing that puzzles me is why Dorinda would have come to Australia on her own if there were remaining siblings as she came straight from a workhouse after being orphaned. I also believe now that the name Saltry is not of Irish origins. I'm going to leave it rest for a while now and concentrate on other lines. Once again, many thanks.

Yours in appreciation,

24-03-2009, 1:51 PM
Hello Jenny!

For what its worth. I also am looking for relatives who came during the potatoe famine.

Last week I watch a documentary on to Canada or Death
and it told the story of a family who left Ireland as 7.
One child was held back before going on the ship because he was sick. Two children died before they got to Montreal. One daughter was taken off in Montreal because she was sick and died there. The father and son were pulled aside in Toronto because they were sick and they died. That left only the mother.

Perhaps your relative was pulled aside because she was sick and was lucky enough to recover and went to Australia later.

24-03-2009, 11:58 PM
I know that this is a very old thread dug back up :)

I see that there is a William SAULTRY born Co Sligo who married Masey McDonald in Victoria, Australia, in 1867 - reg 148.

I wonder if he was a brother to your lass?. She named one of her children William. His marriage certificate will have his parents named. I suppose that you have already been onto that.

25-03-2009, 1:21 AM
Hello Jenny!

For what its worth. I also am looking for relatives who came during the potatoe famine.

Last week I watch a documentary on to Canada or Death


Oh how I wish I had seen that...if you ever see it being rerun please let me know.
I think there are alot of us who are searching for potato famine relatives. Mine ended up south of Hamilton, where did yours settle?


29-01-2013, 4:00 AM
Hi Jenny

We found the army records for Kearns Saltry only recently. They tell his age, his place of birth and provide a physical description of him.

If you PM me, I shall get you a copy


29-01-2013, 6:43 AM
Hello Dale,

Jenny has not visited the forum for about 5 years, although she is still a member. If you click on her name, one of the options in the drop-down box is that of sending an email. Perhaps that could bring her back. :wink5:

20-07-2013, 5:22 AM
Hello Jenny, As you haven't mentioned Dorinda Saltry's marriage to Lemuel BRYENTON, and 8 children in Australia, presume you have all this information. Lemuel was a younger brother to my g.g.grandfather, Ishmael.
Val C Gregory.