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Distinguished Longford emigrants or descendants of emigrants

Researched and compiled by Martin Morris, County Longford Archivist.


  • George Clinton (1739-1812), 4th Vice-President of the US, 1805-1812. Son of Charles Clinton, Killoe, who organised the so-called ‘Presbyterian exodus’ from Longford in 1729, when several Presbyterian families left.
  • James Bronterre O’Brien (1804-1864), radical activist. Leading member of the Chartist movement in Britain, which sought democratic reform in the 1840s.
  • William Forster (1818-1882), Premier of New South Wales, 1859-1860. Son of Thomas Forster, a British army doctor, born near Ballinalee.
  • Francis McCoppin (1834-1897), Mayor of San Francisco, 1867-’69. Born in Killashee.
  • Patrick Egan (1841-1919), treasurer of the Land League, fled Ireland and later served as US ambassador to Chile, 1889-’93. Born in Ballymahon.
  • Edelmiro Farrell (1887-1980), President of Argentina, 1944-’46. Grandson of Mathew Farrell of Longford.

 Clergy and religious

  • Fr Richard, originally Barnabas O’Ferrall (d. 1663), churchman and author. He was a close friend of Rinuccini, papal nuncio to Ireland, 1645-‘49. O’Ferrall co-wrote one of the key accounts of that era – the Commentarius Rinuccinianus.
  • Abbé Henry Essex Edgeworth (1745-1807), chaplain to King Louis XVI of France at his execution in 1793, and later to the royal family in exile. Born in Edgeworthstown, and left for France with his parents, aged four.
  • Fr Joseph Mullooly OP (1812-1880), began excavations under Church of San Clemente, Rome, in 1857, which uncovered important early Christian and Roman remains. Born in Lanesboro.
  • Fr John Drumgoole (1816-1888), founder of a home for boys in New York. Born in Abbeylara.
  • Fr James Sheeran (1819-1881), Redemptorist priest and Confederate army chaplain in US Civil War, during which he kept a journal. Born in Templemichael.
  • Archbishop Patrick FloodOP (1844-1907), Archbishop of Port-of-Spain, Trinidad. Born in Legan.
  • Mother Patrick, Norah Mary Potter (1849-1927), Sister of Mercy in Brisbane. Teacher and administrator in All Hallows’ School, Brisbane; instrumental in building of Mater Misericordiae Hospital, Brisbane. Born in Killashee.


  • Lt Gen. Richard O’Ferrall. Associate of Owen Roe O’Neill and commander of a largely Longford (and O’Ferrall) regiment in the Confederate war of 1640s. Also served on the continent.


  • James McCarroll (1814-1892), journalist, author and inventor. Emigrated to Canada and later the US. Wrote for the Peterborough Chronicle, the Toronto Leader and other ‘papers; invented an improved elevator. Born in Lanesboro.


  • Professor John Shaw (1901-1961), founded the School of Dentistry of Witwatersrand University, South Africa. Born in Ballymahon.


  • Michael Gaffney (1775-1854), founder of the city of Gaffney, South Carolina, in 1804. Born near Granard.
  • Jasper O’Farrell (1817-1875), first surveyor of San Francisco. Has a street named after him there. Descended from O’Farrells of Pallas.