This Moon family comes from Manchester from at least 1857, but before that (pre 1839 but probably later) from Roscommon in Ireland and that is where we are stuck.  The family is not one of mine but that of a friend.  We are hoping that by posting this page, we may get some additional information.  Other names of interest are Dolan and Quinn also of Roscommon. 

Please refer to the Moon census return transcripts

and the 

Moon family tree



Spelling Variation

There is much written about the origins of the name Moon.  The name Moon is synonymous with Moone and Mahon (latter not always a variation of McMahon, but connected to Mohan/Mohun and Meon of Co. Monaghan i .  There are two possible origins:

  1. Irish: the Anglicised form of Gaelic Ó Mocháin (see Mohan – which in Connacht this name was changed to Mahon).
  2. English (of Norman origin): a habitational name from Moyon in La Manche, named from the Gallo-Roman personal name Modius  ii

This is reiterated by Leyland Moon, who runs the Moon One name Study; ” It is stated in most history books that the Moon name originated from the name Mohun and came over with William the  Conqueror”  iii

Therefore, it is worth remembering that where the name Moon/Moone is not found where expected, I should also be looking for variants such as Mahon and Mohun. It hasn’t really helped as yet! 



The area is question is Athlone St Peter’s. This is where George Moon (son of Robert) was born in 1834.  St. Peter’s Church Athlone, Westmeath, in the town of Athlone is in County Westmeath for administrative purposes, but prior to 1899 the town west of Athlone was in Co. Roscommon while that to the east of Athlone was in Co. Westmeath.

Some years ago, we were lucky enough to have had contact with the then vicar of St. Peter’s parish and he sent me a list of the baptisms that they had on record.  Many of the church registers were still kept by the local churches and not readily available online.  Things have changed since then and I have been able to access some of the parish baptisms via, Catholic Parish Registers at the NLI and Rootsireland.

There is not much help from earlier records. The Griffith’s Valuation  1 was carried out between 1848 and 1864 to determine liability to pay the Poor rate (for the support of the poor and destitute within each Poor Law Union). It provides detailed information on where people lived in mid-nineteenth century Ireland and the property they possessed.  This in invaluable as there is no surviving census returns  for Ireland until 1901. 

However, sadly there are few Moons mentioned in it. Only one, Patrick Moon, was living in Roscommon. He was a tenant in the parish of Fuerty in the Barony of Athlone.  There were two other tenants in the parish of Rossinver in the neighbouring county of Longford; James Moon and Patrick Moon. 1.  Unfortunately these records do not give ages or family members. 

Another important source is the Tithe Applotment Books 2 which cover the the pre-Famine period.  They were compiled between 1823 and 1837 in order to determine the amount which occupiers of agricultural holdings over one acre should pay in tithes to the Church of Ireland. In 1824 in Ballypheason, Roscommon, there is mention of an Arthur Moon and in 1833 at Ardmoil, Kilnamanagh, Roscommon a Thomas Moon  2 .  We can find no connection at this time to any of these Moons in the early record. 



What we do know 

The following is based on the information given from Athlone St. Peters and the parish registers available at, and the NLI (National Library of Ireland). 

Robert Moon was born around 1800 to unknown parents.  He was a labourer and married Margaret Dolan at some point by at least 1826.  I cannot find a marriage in the Athlone St Peter Registers.  Catholic registers began in 1845 but full registration didn’t begin until 1864.  There may be Diocesan License Bonds dating back to 1623 (index only as the originals were destroyed in an explosion of the Public record Office in 1922) but I have not been able to find anything there either.

Margaret was possibly the daughter of Joannis Dolan and Arabela/Mabella Day [married 21 August, 1791 St Peter’s] baptised on 16th November, 1803 3.  

The baptism registers of St. Peter’s include sponsors (witnesses or godparents).  On two occasions the children of Robert and Margaret were sponsored by a Jacob Moon (possibly a brother of Robert?) and on another two occasions a Bridget Dolan.  Bridget could be the older sister of Margaret, possibly Joannis Dolan and Arabella Day baptised in 1794.  Robert and Margaret had at least 6 children: 


John Moon bp 2.10.1826 St Peter’s Athlone

Thomas Moon bp 27.9.1827 St Peter’s Athlone                                                                                                                                                                                            m 17.9.1852 St Peter’s Athlone to Maria Macken (witnesses William Moon & Catherine Dolan)

Henry Moon bp 12.3.1830 St Peter’s Athlone

William Moon bp 15.4.1832 St Peter’s Athlone                                                                                                                                                                                           d 1894 Athlone aged 63                   

George Moon bp 11.6.1834 St Peter’s Athlone                                                                                                                                                                                            m 3.8.1856 Manchester St. Patrick to Julia Quinn                                                                                                                                                 d 27.7.1866 St Patrick’s Chapel, Manchester

Stephen Moon b Drum, bp 10.112.1839 St Peter’s Athlone


A Robert Moon was listed as a recipient of the Irish Reproductive Loans twice; on 12th January, 1844 and 24th September, 1847.  At this time he was living in Ratra, in the Tibohine parish in the northern part of county Roscommon 4 .  As he is not listed on the Griffiths Valuation for the that area (or anywhere else) we have to assume that Robert had died between then and 1848/1864. However, I cannot find any such record, even with name variants.  Neither can I find any mention of Margaret. 


George Moon was born in 1834 and baptised on 11th June, 1834 at St. Peter’s, Athlone.  We know that the family was still in Athlone on 1839 when his brother Stephen was born and we presume they were in Roscommon in 1847, unless the Robert mentioned above is a different Robert Moon!.  We know that George married Julia Quinn, daughter of John Quinn, on 3rd August, 1856 at St. Patrick’s Chapel, Manchester. At that time Julia was living at nearby Collyhurst Street and George was living at Tremlow Street off Rochdale Road (Tremlow Street no longer exists). 

Julia was also from Roscommon 6, but we do not know if they met in Roscommon before moving to Manchester or whether they met once they had emigrated.  There are no passenger lists of people emigrating from Ireland to England. They would probably have used domestic ferries where records were not kept, so it is impossible to know when exactly they arrived in Lancashire. There is no sign of either George or Julia in the 1851 census, which could mean they were still in Ireland at that point. And as there are no censuses in Roscommon for this period it is impossible to check. 


From 1845 onwards came a period of extraordinary immigration to Britain as a result of the Famine in Ireland. During the first five months of 1847 no fewer than 300,000 Irish landed in Liverpool. Those who didn’t perish from fever spread out across Lancashire. The census of 1851 recorded that there were 191,500 Irish born in Lancashire, 46.000 of which were resident in Manchester, representing 15.2% of the city’s population. 7


George and Julia had the following children, and of these, I have only been able to find two baptism records: 


James William Moon b 3.7.1857 Manchester                                                                                                                                                                                                            m 1887 Salford Register Office to Jane Edge                                                                                                                                                                d 24.12.1931 Salford

George Moon b 1859 Manchester,                                                                                                                                                                                                                  bur 24 Aug 1882 St Peter, Swinton

Henry Moon b 1861 Manchester                                                                                                                                                                                                                  m 1891 Chorlton on Medlock to Mary Jane Hanbury                                                                                                                                               d 1951 Southport

Robert Moon b 28.5.1864 Manchester, bp 119.6.1864 St. Chad, Cheetham 16                                                                                                                                          d 1882 Stockport, Cheshire

Thomas Moon b 10.9.1866, bp 16.9.1866 St. Chad, Cheetham 16                                                                                                                                                                 d 1867 Manchester

At the time of the 1861 census, George was a Tailor and they were living at 45 Limer Street, Rochdale Road, Manchester 6 .   In the 1865 Slater’s Directory, George is listed a a tailor at 7 Little Neston Street.  He died at the same address on 27th July, 1866 aged only 28 8 and sadly before the birth of his youngest son Thomas.  I cannot locate his burial place, nor that of Thomas who appears to have died the following year 9 .  There is also no death entries for a Julia Moon; but one possible entry for Julia at the time of the 1871 census. There is a Julia Mahon born in Ireland, aged 36, a widow living as a cook/domestic servant with a General practitioner Henry Worsley and his family 44 Ardwick Green, Chorlton-on-Medlock 6

As for the four children, they were all sent away to the Swinton Industrial School at Barton Upon Irwell where they were found together as inmates and scholars at the time of the 1871 census 6.  Swinton Industrial School was built 1843-5 and was set up the Manchester Poor law Union for Pauper children. 

Swinton Industrial School

Swinton Industrial School, Image courtesy of SLHL


I did find one record of a Robert Moon, confirmed on 24th March, 1877 at Swinton Industrial School, which would have made him twelve at the time 16a. His confirmation name was Henry.



James William Moon was born on 3rd July, 1857 at  .   At the time of the 1881 census it is not clear whether he was a coal miner living at 5 Cheetham Lane, Worsley or a lithographic printer living at 3 Prior Street, Manchester. either way, he was a border.    He married Jane Edge, daughter of Samuel Edge, Twine merchant and Mary Holden, at Salford Register Office on 1887.  They had three children: 


Eva Moon b 29.6.1888 10 Pendleton                                                                                                                                                                                                     m 28.9.1910 Brunswick Chapel, Pendleton to James William Kay 8

Clifford Moon b 25.5.1890 Pendleton                                                                                                                                                                                                           m 15.1.1916 Salford to Dorothy Margaret Matthews (his parents James and Jane were witnesses)                                                             d 1968

Lester Moon b 1895 Pendleton                                                                                                                                                                                                                      d 1897 9


At the time of the 1891 census James was a labourer in a mill, living at 35 Scales Place, Pendleton.  He is then listed in the 1895 Directory of as a Confectioner living at 32 Hankinson Street, Pendleton.  His wife Jane was a confectioner as stated in the 1901 census of the same address where James was now a card cloth spreader 6.     

At the time of the 1911 census James, Jane and Clifford were living at Cottage 11A Eccles Old Road, Pendleton, James was a spreader of rubber 6  (and Indian Rubber Spread at the time of his daughter Eva’s marriage in 1910 8).   Eva and her husband James Kay were nearby at 44 Hankinson Road. 

Jane may have died in 1928 aged 71, registered at Salford 9.  James died on 24th December, 1931 aged 74 9.



Eva Moon was born on 29th June, 1888 at Pendleton. She married James William Kay, a gardener (son of John Kay) on 29th September, 1910 at Brunswick Chapel, Pendleton 8.  At the time of the 1911 census they were living at 44 Hankinson Road, Pendleton 6.   They had two daughters  10


Dorothy E Kay b 22.6.1913 Pendleton                                                                                                                                                                                                           d 1993 Hastings aged 79

Edna Margaret Kay b 20.3.1918 Pendleton                                                                                                                                                                                                           m 9.1.1950 St. Andrew, Jamaica to Lewis Andrew Hodgkinson Lack (M.C. C.P.M.)  


At the time of the 1939 Register James, Eva and Dorothy were living at Iscaed, Prestatyn, Flintshire, Wales. James was a Bread Van man 10.  Their other daughter Edna was living at 68 Barton Road, Lancaster and was a school teacher 10.  Edna was a school teacher and she went to Jamaica on 15th November 1947 on the ship “Almanzora” when she was 29.  Her address was given as 42 Dunstone Road, Salford. 11

She married Lewis Andrew, Hodgkinson Lack on 9th January, 1950 in Jamaica 12.  Her sister Dorothy was a witness. Edna returned to Avonmouth, Bristol on 13th June, 1952 on “S.S. Ariguani” with her husband Lewis Lack, a police superintendant and a 9 month old daughter, Margaret.  They returned again on 25th May, 1956 on the “S. S. Cavina” from Barbados this time with two children, Margaret born in 1951 and Peter born in 1954 11.  Then on 22nd January, 1957 they left for the West Indies on the “Camito”  and again on 13th September, 1860 the family left again for Jamaica on the “Camito” with a third child Jacqueline born in 1959 11.  

Interestingly, Lewis (known by Andrew) had been serving in 3rd Parachute Squadron Royal Engineers in World war 2.  He was in command of a Royal Engineer reconnaissance party in support of 5th Parachute Brigade in the area of Pont L’Eveque on 22nd August 1944.  He was awarded the Military Cross for his ‘determination, of devotion to duty, and utter disregard for his own personal safety’ during this operation 13.

See whole Article

After the War Lewis joined the Palestine Police Force and served from 1947 until around 1948 when he transferred to the Jamaican Colonial Police, which is presumably where he met Edna, who was working as a Queen’s Army Schoolmistress  8.  He was recognised by the Queen on 2nd June 1962 and given the Colonial Police Medal 14

Lewis was Senior Superintendent when he was killed on 14th February, 1967 while on duty during the Aden Emergency.  He was taken back to Scotland and buried at Crail in Fife on 12th July, 1967 15 .   His widow Edna remained in England.




Clifford Moon was born on 25th May, 1890 at Pendleton.   He married Dorothy Margaret Matthews, daughter of William Matthews and Sarah Anne Widdowson, on 15th January, 1916 at Salford. Clifford’s parents James and Jane Moon were witnesses 8.  Clifford joined the RAF on 20th July 1917 (service Number: 233934) on the HMS President II (an accounting base) and then the HMS Daedalus which was a Naval Air station. He served until 31st March, 1918 17. He is found on the Missing Voters list for Salford in 1918 for 64 Bolton Road. 

was a salesman. He and Dorothy had two sons born in Salford. 



George Moon, the 2nd son of George and Julia was born in 1859.  He appears that he may have been coal minor at the time of the 1881 census, but he died aged 22 in 1882 at Barton Upon Irwell 9 and was buried on 24th Aug 1882 at St Peter, Swinton 16


Henry Moon, the 3rd son of George and Julia was born in 1861.  At the time of the 1881 census he was boarding at 62 Russel street, Hulme, Manchester as a school master 6.  He was still boarding and working as a school master at the time of the 1891 census living at 118 Princess Street, Moss-side 6.

Henry married Mary Jane Hanbury in 1891 at Cholton on Medlock. At the time of the 1901 census they were living at 71 Bent Street, Borough of Cheetham with their son Henry Joseph Moon (born 11th September 1892 at Cheetham) aged 8 6

At the time of the 1911 census, Henry, Jane and their son Henry Jospeh who was now also a teacher, were living at 454 Cheetham Hill Rd Manchester 6. And by the time of the 1939 Register, Henry and Mary had moved to 1 E Clarence Road, Southport where Henry was a retired Schoolmaster aged 78  10.  Henry died in Southport age 89 in 1951 9.

Henry and Mary Jane’s son, Henry Joseph served as Lt. in the Royal Lancaster Regt. (King’s Own) in the 1914-1918 War 17.   He married Louie M Pearce at Barton Upon Irwell in 1923 9. They had a son Arthur H Moon born on 20th September, 1924 and then five further sons.   At the time of the 1939 Register, Henry Joseph was a school teacher living at Formby with his wife Louie and son Arthur H Moon who had just left school.  However, Henry Joseph joined the Home Guard; 74th County of Lancaster in WW2 and died aged 52 on 17th August, 1944. He was buried at Our Lady of Compassion RC Churchyard at Formby 18


Robert Moon, the youngest son of George and Julia was born in 1864. At the time of the 1881 census he was a teacher, boarding at 2 Brown Street, Stockport, Cheshire with James and Catherine Meade 6.  He died in mid 1882, the same year as his elder brother George at only 18 9




i Irish Identity

ii ancestry: Moon name origin

iii Moon One Name Study

1 Griffiths Valuation 

2 Tithe Applotment Books

3 Athlone St Peter’s Catholic parish records at NLI

4 Ireland, Sustainability Loan Fund, 1812-1868 from


6 census returns from

7 Irish Immigration – the merseyside reporter

8 birth, marriage, death certificates

9 FreeBMD

10 1939 Register

11 Passenger Records from

12 Marriages from

13 Pegasus Archive

14 The Gazzette 2 June 1962

15 Memorial of Lewis Andrew Hodgkinson Lack –  Find A Grave

16 Lanc-opc baptisms for Cheetham

16a Lanc-opc Confirmations at Swinton Industrial School

17 Military records

18 Find a Grave – Henry Joseph Moon





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