Vyger Irish Genealogy

Our search to further our Eggleton, Surgeoner, Smiley & Gracey
ancestry in Ireland and around the world building new
family relationships in sharing what we have learnt.




My current Eggleton hot topics

After searching for many years for my Eggleton ancestors in Ireland I have turned my sights to Norfolk, England and Wayne County, Pennsylvania. The northern area of Norfolk around Bawdeswell, Stibbard, Fakenham and South Creake is where the Eggleton family originated. Wayne County, Pennsylvania is where the family of Robert Eggleton and Lydia Armiger emigrated to back around 1871.

Eggleton in Wayne County, Pennsylvania

I’m now searching for the descendants of Robert & Lydia Eggleton who emigrated from Norfolk, England to Wayne County, Pennsylvania. If you happen to be descended from any of the following families then I would love to hear from you and compare notes.

  • Charles, Mabel & Mahala Agath Eggleton (Lent) - children of James Eggleton & Minnie Darling.  
  • Sarah, Honor, Robert, Welcome & William Lake - children of William Lake and Honor Eggleton.  
  • Elizabeth, Armiger, Egbert, Robert & Fred Shuman - children of Albert Shuman & Mary Eggleton.  
  • Fred & Hulday Young - children of Virgil Young & Prudence Eggleton.  
  • Ethel, Leslie, George, Clarence, Romain & Horton - children of John Eggleton & Alice Blackwell.  
  • Frank, William, Lydia Ewain (Ewin) - children of John Ewain and Hager Eggleton.  

I have found the headstones for some of these family descendants and also some obituaries but I will always be grateful to receive more information.

eggleton norfolk

Eggleton in Norfolk, England

To the best of my knowledge at present, Robert Eggleton was born 1824 and would have been the youngest of seven children, four of which were male. That leaves a lot of Eggletons back in Norfolk I still have to tie in although I have some partial information already.

So I am looking for descendants of the following :-

  • William Eggleton, born around 1813.  
  • Hannah Eggleton, born around 1816.  
  • John Eggleton, born around 1817.  
  • Margaret Eggleton, born around 1819.  
  • Ann Taylor Eggleton, born around 1821.  
  • James Eggleton, born around 1823.  

Any information on the families of the above and their descendants will be very gratefully received.

I was lucky enough to obtain copies of some letters written by Tom, Stella and Mildred who I believe might be connected to the Lawes family. Back in 1990 and before these individuals were working on the genealogy of this family the hard way. Their findings have been so helpful and it would be nice to make contact with there family today.


Smyley's of Belfast

Although the name is now spelled Smiley it would appear going back to the early 1800's it was more commonly spelled Smyley.

The earliest ancestors I now have confirmed on my wife's side are that of Robert Smyley and Mary Ann Faulkner. Robert and Mary Ann had at least five children. I do know that one daughter, Mary Ann, married a Robert McCormick (McCormack) in 1862, the other children I have still to trace.


Surgeoner, Surgenor, Surginor families

The Surgeoner name has various spellings which believe it or not can have some meaning of origin. My research has shown that the spelling below are likely to point to a family connection in that area but like most things it is now 100%.

  • SURGEONER - most likely Ballyclare - Doagh area connections  
  • SURGENOR - most likely Ballymena - Ahoghill connections  
  • SURGINOR - most likely Belfast - Antrim connections  

I collect all information on the various spellings of the name so would be grateful to receive any information.


Gracey family - County Down?

I have still to prove my wife's Gracey line back before Belfast in the early 1800's although I have a strong suspicion they were from Magheralin or Dromore. The earliest ancestor I have at present Henry Gracey a pattern maker who would have been born before 1820.

The family also seemed to have some connections which had them travel back and forth between Newry and Belfast but this may have been simply work related.


The Thompson farm at Ballynaris?

My father in law was born 1924 and he always recalled his trip at around age 6 to the Thompson farm at Dromore. He never knew who the Thompson family were or how they were connected to his family. I quizzed him on his trip and he recalled getting off the train at the stop before Dromore and walking along the track side to the Thompson farm. He walked in the same direction as the train and the farm was located right next to the train track on the right hand side.

Looking into this further the last stop before Dromore was Magherabeg (now disused). The location of the farm must have been that which now replaced with a large dwelling on the Bishops Well Road.

A relatively large Thompson family did appear on the 1911 census in Ballynaris and Gracey's also appeared in the townland. The Gracey family could be the connection here but I have still to find it.


Stevenson of Derrycaw, Tartaraghan, Co Armagh

My mother in law descends from the Stevenson's of Derrycaw, Tartaraghan, Co Armagh. Her great grandfather, Samuel Stevenson, was married to Anne Wright in St Pauls, Tartaraghan back in 1875.

Samuel was the son of Edward Stevenson whose wife was possibly Ruth. This line I probably know least about so I would be very glad to hear from anyone researching this family.

There was also a connection to a family run department store in Portadown which also is reported to have had a branch in Belfast. The name of the store was Elliott & Stevensons.