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Looking details of my father John Kenneth Kerr.

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date
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Sandra Report 12 Sep 2016 22:05

I have been trying to find out information on my father's family for many, many years and am hitting a brick wall. Long after my father died, I found out he had a brother and sister. My cousin was looking for her uncle and we connected through this website in 2004! Now we all have the same mystery. Despite checking the whole UK I can not find a birth certificate for my father John Kenneth Kerr - this is the name on his baptism certificate from May 1931 in Crumlin Presbyterian Church. His mother's name was Margaret McKee DOB 10/4/1906. She has no marriage certificate, so I am guessing the father named on the certificate (John Kerr) would have been a casual relationship. Not to slander my grand mother but the RAF were stationed about 1 mile from their home at this time! None of her other children knew a father, despite his name being on all their birth certificates and her name being down as Margaret Kerr! We grew up being told by my father that he was born in Toronto and brought back to Ireland to be raised by his Aunt. I have no idea where to go from here, as John Kenneth Kerr DOB 14/1/1931(we were always told this by him) might not even be his real name. He had 2 aunt's on his mother's side Annie McKee born 1899 and Catherine McKee born 1911.
Any help would be very greatly appreciated :-(


patchem Report 12 Sep 2016 23:02

Did he say when he was meant to have travelled from Toronto to Ireland, and were his siblings younger or older than him?

Mike *

Mike * Report 12 Sep 2016 23:46

from someone's private tree so no other details shown

Name: John Kenneth Kerr
Birth: 1931 - Antrim, Northern Ireland


Kay???? Report 13 Sep 2016 00:18

Ancestry has John Kenneth McKee on incoming passenger list,,,,access is needed for full details.


JoonieCloonie Report 13 Sep 2016 00:41

Sandra, is this your dad's death?

edit - deleted - the death was in Yorkshire (and a matching birth in Merionethshire; I hadn't yet figured out where Crumlin Presbyterian Church was)

Can you tell us where and when your dad died?

If your parents were married, do you have their marriage certificate to see whether he named his father?

and the most important question: places.

Where were the other children's births registered?
and were they older or younger than your father?

Where did your father live that you know of?

edit - you have him in your tree as born in Crumlin County Antrim Northern Ireland.

You and two others also have Francis 1938.
Two people have a John born 1930 in Crumlin, and one of has a John born 1932 in Crumlin.
That person also has a May and Marie born in the same place around the same time.


JoonieCloonie Report 13 Sep 2016 00:52

this is the record Kay???? referred to

Name: John Kenneth Kerr
Birth Date: 17 Nov 1920
Age: 39
Port of Departure: Cape Town, South Africa
Arrival Date: 14 Oct 1960
Port of Arrival: Southampton, England
Ship Name: Pretoria Castle

He is a civil engineer, address in Scotland, wife Moira, and three children born in the 1950s, last residing in Mauritius. Not him, it would seem.

Incoming John Kerr 1935, born c1931, had parents John and Joan.

No other until 1952, presumably a little late.


JoonieCloonie Report 13 Sep 2016 02:05

Margaret McKee DOB 10/4/1906
Annie McKee born 1899
Catherine McKee born 1911

I can't find Annie or Margaret in the 1911 Irish census

Catherine born too late for census presumably
Name Catherine Mckee ?
Event Type Birth
Event Date Jul - Sep 1911
Event Place Antrim, Ireland
Registration Quarter and Year Jul - Sep 1911
Registration District Antrim
Volume Number 1
Page Number 8

but I don't see birth records there or at Ancestry for Annie or Margaret

I'm wondering whether McKee might have been a stepfather's name, i.e. that her mother remarried between 1906 and Catherine's birth in 1911.

If your dad was actually born in Canada, that means that Margaret must have gone to Canada at some point.

This is the most likely candidate:

Name: Margaret McKee
Gender: Female
Age: 19
Birth Date: 1907
Departure Date: 8 May 1926
(although your Margaret would have turned 20 then)
Port of Departure: Belfast, Northern Ireland
Destination Port: Quebec, Canada
Ship Name: Metagama

and of course your dad would have had to travel from Canada between his birth and baptism, a very narrow window.


Sandra Report 13 Sep 2016 11:07

Patchem - if he was born in Toronto, he must have came back here as a very young b baby to be christened in Crumlin, CO.Antrim in May 1931.

Jooniecloonie - 1901 census - Margaret was in her daughter Agnes house, looking after Annie who was 1. Agnes was in the Rectory, as she was a house servant.
I went to the local Records Office and found Annie's birth, she was born 2 years before Agnes married her husband. No father's name was mentioned. I have lost Annie in the 1911 census, which is strange, as she would only have been 11 or 12. I couldn't find Margaret in Ancestry either. for some reason.
My dad's grandparents were married in Crumlin Presbyterian church in 1902. They were Agnes McKee (maiden name) and John McKee. Strange having same surnames!!! Their fathers's were - Agnes (Thomas Mckee, labourer) and John (John McKee, farmer)
I also saw that ship record on Ancestry. It fits in perfectly but who did she go with ? The family story goes - My Dad's mother and father eloped to Canada to get married, as one was from a wealthy family and one from a poor family. He was born in Canada and then brought back here to be raised by his Aunt. what happened his parents, is another mystery!!! It could be rubbish and my dad could have just been embarrased by the fact he didn't know who his father was and his mother was unmarried. At his mother's funeral, around 1958 - 60, my father and his brother Frank had a massive row and they never saw each other again! Heather was only 12 -14 according to her friend that I managed to find. She went to be raised by an Aunt also.
How can you see passenger lists, I would love to scan down it to see if there is a Kerr with her!


Sandra Report 13 Sep 2016 11:08

Kay??? What year did the John kenneth Mckee come back? This is very interesting!

Sorry I have just seen the McKee in jooniecloonie's post!


Choccy Report 13 Sep 2016 11:56

UK, Incoming Passenger Lists, 1878-1960

>>>>>>>>Name:John Kenneth McKee - aged 3 months

Port of Departure:St John, New Brunswick, Canada

Arrival Date:25 Apr 1931

Port of Arrival:Liverpool, England

Ship Name:Montrose

Shipping line:Canadian Pacific Line

Official Number:145919

travelling with

Margaret McKee aged 25

Intended address in UK - Crosshill, Crumlin, Co. Antrim


MargaretM Report 13 Sep 2016 11:59

Margaret returning to Ireland with son John Kenneth aged 3 months. They're going to Crosshill, Crumlin, Co. Antrim to stay permanently in Northern Ireland. She's listed as a domestic.

Margaret McKee

in the UK, Incoming Passenger Lists, 1878-1960
Record Image View

Name: Margaret McKee
Birth Date: abt 1906
Age: 25
Port of Departure: St John, New Brunswick, Canada
Arrival Date: 25 Apr 1931
Port of Arrival: Liverpool, England
Ship Name: Montrose
Search Ship Database: Search for the Montrose in the 'Passenger Ships and Images' database
Shipping line: Canadian Pacific Line
Official Number: 145919


Kay???? Report 13 Sep 2016 22:12

Very good find Choccy ,pm sent to poster to return and see your finds.


Choccy Report 13 Sep 2016 22:26

The address may ring a bell with Sandra.


Sandra Report 13 Sep 2016 22:41

omg, omg, I can;t believe this!!!!!!!!!!!!!


patchem Report 13 Sep 2016 22:45

Anyone know how to apply for Canadian birth certificates?

And, yes, back as a very young baby.


Sandra Report 13 Sep 2016 22:56

I tried looking for him on Canadian search sites but couldn't find him. You have no idea how happy this makes me. Can't wait to tell the rest of my family!
It would be fantastic to be able to get a birth certificate!!


Sandra Report 13 Sep 2016 22:59

MargaretM - you say they were going to Croshill, Crumlin. That is where they lived when my father was small. Does it say that somewhere in the records?? How can I see the records?


Sandra Report 13 Sep 2016 23:02

Choccy you are a star. Thank you so much for this. :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D


Choccy Report 13 Sep 2016 23:14

This is the passenger list link which I posted at 11.56 (in case you missed it)

:-D :-D


Sandra Report 13 Sep 2016 23:37

Choccy, the link just takes me to the Ancestry home page?