James – last Keeper of the Black Bell of the McEnhills

When James McEnhill was born on 14 October 1865, his father, Hugh, was 30 and his mother, Catherine, was 29. He had three sons and three daughters with Jane Doherty between 1900 and 1910. He died on 10 March 1933 in Tyrone at the age of 67.

He worked with his brother Hugh in an asylum in Tyrone as of 1900. James was the keeper of An Clog Dubh – the Black Bell of Drumragh, otherwise known as The McEnhill Bell. This ninth century church bell was held by the oldest male in the McEnhill clan. James gave it for safekeeping to the Sacred Heart Church in Drumragh in 1932.



2 thoughts on “James – last Keeper of the Black Bell of the McEnhills

  1. Thank you for the brilliant site which contains a lot of information which I didn’t know. I can possibly fill in a few gaps for you. My Great Grandfather was the James McEnhill whose head stone is pictured on this site. I have a handkerchief of his which has a map of Europe printed on it & his name & ASYLUM written on the margin. His eldest son Joseph Brendan McEnhill was my Grandad, he died in 1972 & his ashes were scattered on the grave in Killyclogher (photo on your site) & his name added to the gravestone. Joseph had 2 sons James (Jim) & Francis (Frank) a daughter Margaret Mary Theresa (Maggie). Jim had 2 sons Stephen James (Steve) & Charles Brendan (Brendan). I took my dad to Omagh for his 80th birthday & he held the bell. He died in 2006 at the age of 82. Aunt Maggie is still alive & well & lives in Chester. Stephen James McEnhill has 2 sons Timothy Sean (Tim) & Robert Patrick (Rob). Thanks, Stephen James McEnhill.


    1. Stephen – I’ve neglected this blog for a long time and so I missed your message. Feeling very guilty! Returned to it as my father, who worked with me a lot on the ancestry side of things, died last month of Covid and other complications. Great to see all that detail from you. My Dad would have loved to read all that. So you’re a Bradford-based branch of the McEnhills going back three generations!
      Your great grandfather worked with my great grandfather Hugh at the same asylum. I’ve been uncovering lots of details about James and Hugh’s brothers Francis and William who went to live in the United States. Added to my Ancestry.com account. My email always the best way to make sure I don’t miss a message: tonymcmahon@rostraconsulting.com
      I’ll start re-engaging again with this blog – left it for too long. And many thanks for your message. Sorry once more for taking ages to respond.
      Tony McMahon


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