View Full Version : Whalen/Phelan DNA Surname Project

08-06-2012, 11:56 PM
the following was written a few years ago by myself for a personal family history and I thought others might be interested in some tidbits I came up with.....

" Fast WHALEN Facts

• The Whalen/Phalen surnames together are the 44th most common Irish surname today.
• There are approximately 12,000 Whalen/Phalen’s in Ireland today with “Eighty percent of the Phalen’s belonging to the Counties Waterford, Kilkenny and adjacent areas, while Whalen’s extended further into Wexford and Carlow."
• According to the ‘Primary Valuation’ property survey of 1848-64 that recorded renters, Co. Laois had the most Whalen households at 492, next was Co. Waterford at 474, Co. Tipperary was 3rd at 256, 4th was Co Kilkenny at 227 and 5th was Co. Wexford at 219
• The Irish Co. that had the fewest number of Whalen’s living in them were Derry, Down and Sligo all at 1, with Antrim and Belfast City at 2 each
• 150 years ago in Ireland, the very highest concentration of Whalen households in Ireland were in the South and East and almost evenly divided between the historical strongholds of O’Faoláin Tribes/Sept’s in both Leinster and Munster Province. Ulster Province or Northern Ireland is almost bare of Whalen households and Connaght Province has minimal numbers
• Whalen is an ancient Celtic name that was first spelled FAOLÁIN and whose origin dates back to around 200 A.D.
• There are three separate ‘historical’ Whalen bloodlines in Ireland, from three different Irish provinces and social ranks - Records show Whalen’s were Princes in Munster Province, Castle Nobility in Leinster and a Bardic Family in Ulster.
• According to the 2001 Canadian Census, there were some 1,761,000 people in Ontario, who were of Irish decent, which I believe is close to ¼ of the entire population of the Province. Canada wide 3,822,000 citizens have Irish roots.

Whalen Facts from “Our Name in History - The Whalen Name”

The following comes from a book I ordered (from the ‘Ancestry.com’ firm) that was full of mostly useless general history that focused on the US. Nevertheless, I was able to distil the following ‘Whalen’ related statistics from it, some of which are fascinating and clearly apply to Canadian Whalen’s. One of the U.S. military statistics actually includes a big surprise as it speaks of a grandson of our Patriarch Patrick.

• As of 2000, there were 10,372 Whalen households living in the U.S.
• Liverpool England was by far the most commonly used Port of Departure for Whalen’s emigrating to the US with over 1100, the next was Yarmouth Nova Scotia with 106, Queenstown, Ireland at 57, St. Johns Newfoundland at 53, Aspinwall, Panama at 42, Halifax Nova Scotia at 31, London at 25 and Galway Ireland at 17.
• The most common U.S arrival ports for Whalen’s were New York at 1067, Boston at 372 and Philadelphia at 100.
• In 1840 the states with the most Whalen households were New York at 23, Kentucky at 12, Maryland at 9, Indiana at 5 and Virginia at 5.
• The most common Christian names for Whalen’s in 1880 were in order: Mary, John, Thomas, William, James, Anna, and Elizabeth.
• The most common Christian names for Whalen’s in 1960 were in order: Michael, John, William, Mark, Richard, Deborah, James and David.
• In 1860, Whalen’s owned a total of 23 slaves, with 9-17 in Maryland, between 4-8 slaves in Georgia and 1-3 slaves in Kentucky and Alabama. 52% of the Whalen slaves were men and 48% were women.
• In the U.S Civil War, 302 Whalen’s fought for the Union and 35 for the Confederacy.
• The most common Union Civil War Units with Whalen’s in them were the 48th Penn. Inf. with five, 90th Illinois Inf. with five, 81st Ohio Inf. with four, 9th Mass. Inf. with four and 35th Indiana with four.
• In 1880, the States with the most Whalen households were: New York 408, Massachusetts 159, Illinois 152, Penn. 121 and Ohio with 81.
• In 1880 in the US, the most common occupations for Whalen men were: Labourer 569, Farmer 308, Farm Labour 78, Blacksmith 44, Carpenter 39, Miner 34 and Teamster 32.
• In 1880 in the US, the most common occupations for Whalen women were: keeping house/housekeeping 1,687, servant 230, domestic servant 24 and works in cotton mill 24.
• In 1880, Labourers and Skilled Labour made between 1-3 dollars for the average 10 hr. workday ($1 in 1880 = $17.83 in the year 2000).
• In 1901 in Canada, there were 488 Whalen households in Ontario, 183 in Nova Scotia, 156 in New Brunswick, 104 in Quebec and 19 in B.C.
• In WW1 in the US, there were 3,095 Whalen men drafted.
• In 1920, the states with the largest number of Whalen households were: New York 1,031, Mass. 467, Penn. 422, Illinois 352 and Ohio 193.
• In 1920, 97.5% of Whalen’s were considered literate and that was several points (3-6 approx.) higher than the average rate.
• In 1920, 1,108 Whalen ‘heads of household’ owned their home and 1,643 rented. Whalen home ownership was less when compared to the general public by a significant margin (5-15% approx.).
• In WW2, in the last of 4 US drafts called the ‘old man registration’ and the only one available to the public, 437 Whalen’s were drafted.
• In WW2, 22.6% of Whalen’s had a grammar school education, 64.4% had at least 1 yr. of high school and 13% had at least 1 yr. of University.
• In WW2, for the initial rank of Whalen’s in the US army, 838 were Privates, 17 were P.F.C.’s, 6 were Corporals, and 4 were First Sergeants. There was a total of 980 Whalen’s enlisted in the US Army.
• U.S. Military Service burials for Whalen’s by War: Indian Wars 1, Civil War 19, Spanish-American War 12, WW1 61, WW2 354, Korea 73, Vietnam 27 and Desert Storm 1.
• U.S. Whalen’s buried by service branch (approx.): 560 Army, 190 Navy, 110 Air Force, 100 Marines, and 15 Coast Guard.
• In 2000, the states with the most Whalen households were: New York with 1,164, Mass. 844, California 746, Florida 646 and Penn. 603.
• In the US, between 1850 and 1880, the most common causes of death for Whalen’s were: Consumption (T.B.) 12.5%, Scarlet Fever 4.7%, Heart Disease 3.1%, Marasmus (malnutrition, usually infant) 3.1%, Infant Cholera 2.3%, Convulsions 2.3%, Croup (child respiratory) 2.3%, Inflammation of Bowels 2.3%, Phthisis (T.B. -archaic name for it) 2.3% and Teething 2.3%.
• The most common Whalen ‘days’ of death are Wednesday and Monday, the most common Whalen ‘months’ of death are January and December (this is certainly true for our ancestors).
• In 1840 there were 73 Whalen households, which was the 4,552nd most common household name in the US, in 2000, there were 10,372 and it is now in 2007 the 1,142nd most common household name.
• In 1860, there were 56 or 10.8% of Whalen households headed by women, 1880 it was 246 or 15.8% , 1920 it was 511 or 18.2%.
• In England in 1881, the most common occupations for Whalen men were: Coal Miner 6, Cotton Operative 3, Painter 2, Cooper and Boot maker 2. For Whalen women, it was: Cotton weaver 5, Laundress 3, housekeeper 3, factory worker 2 and Tailor 2.


08-07-2012, 12:05 AM
from April 2012....

Here is the updated geno map showing the actual geographic locations of project members at a minimum, the confirmed by paper trail County level or their significant DNA matches to someone that has a confirmed geographic place in Ireland (thus bridging many brick walls for our members who were 'stuck' in the new world)

I had a real problem matching up the size of the fonts when I added 4 members today-no clue why so my appologies for the appearances
on another note, the geno map is starting to become a victim of the projects success...we are up to 71 tested members, many who are now on this map and its becomming more and more difficult to fit in new information...a good problem to have, but I dont like the messyness and crowdedness of the present map and if we get any more members in certain area's I wont be able to fit them in easily
...I will think over how to solve this...I suspect some sort of ground level redo with much less info is the only way around it but I hate to drop any of the info I've chosen to put in...in any case, a problem for another day

I ask all project members to take a look and see if I have you on the map, assuming you have at least an Irish County of origin via paper trail, or a solid dna match to someone that does...its really easy for me to miss one of Frances's updates and 'lose' one of the folks I'm supposed to update-dont be afraid to give feedback, all is welcome



08-07-2012, 12:08 AM
from March 2012....

The largest single common dna group in the project is the L144 guys. I did this map showing the oldest recorded geographical locations for our men that had the marker and came up with what I found was very convincing proof that they are a legacy of the Whalen Barons of the old Ossory Kingdom. There is a clear geographic 'hot spot' within 40 K of the Whalen Castle stronghold in Rathdowny. Fair warning, my co admin Francis feels there is other information that suggests they reprecent the Dieces Whalens...so there is no consensus on the point



08-07-2012, 12:12 AM
**another exerpt from my family saga that deals with the 3 historical Irish Whalen families

"The first of the Whalen kin noted in history is…

• O’Faoláin (The Wolf) –Historically speaking, the first and largest bloodline of Whalen’s are the Faoláin’s from the semi ‘mythological’ line of Milesian King’s who are said to have invaded Ireland from Gaul (Spain and southern France) and who were also known as the Goidel/Gael, which is the root of the word Gaelic. This invasion happened around 100-200 BC. They almost certainly migrated due to pressures from Rome’s Imperial expansion and the great Caesar himself. Stemming from a younger brother of the famous High King Conn of 100 battles (d. 157 AD), these Phalen/Whalen’s eventually became Princes and Chieftains of the Decies Tribe in the Waterford/Tipperary area of Munster Province. Interestingly, a small sept of these Decies Whalen’s migrated into Leinster province in near by Kilkenny Co. They seemed to have controlled a large part of land in the southeast section of Kilkenny, and it’s recorded that a powerful Bishop named Phalen came from this line.

We will go into much more detail below about this Tribe but I do have one brief poem about them from the Annals:
“Aryan speaks of them thus: "Two gentle chiefs whose names I tell, rule the Desies. I affirm it. O'Bric*** the exactor of tributes, with him the wise and fair O'Felan. In Moylacha of the fertile slopes, rules O'Felan for the benefit of his tribe. Great is the allotted territory, of which O'Felan holds possession".

***Footnote- O'Bric, now ‘Brick’, without the prefix O'. This family originally possessed the southern Desies, comprised in the present county of Waterford, but they had sunk under the O'Faelains or O'Phelans, who were originally seated in the northern Decies in the present county of Tipperary some time before the English invasion. O'Faelain, now made Phelan, in the anglicized form of the name, without the prefix O' and by some, Whelan. “

This Whalen surname exists to this day, unlike the next one according to some research. This Whalen Tribal name held the second highest Irish rank of ‘Princes’ in the social classes and order, with only ‘King’ above it.

Why A Wolf?

The first time one of the sons of Fiacha Suidhe was formally named and called a ‘wolf’ in the Annals was 19 generations after Fiacha lived and around the 800’s AD. This of course made me curious as to why someone might be called the Gaelic for Wolf, and I found the following regarding ancient and Celtic symbology.

Intelligence & Cunning
“The wolf is a cunning, intelligent creature, capable of out-thinking hunters. It can teach us how to read the signs of nature in everything, how to pass by danger invisibly, how to outwit those who wish you harm, and how to fight when needed. Sometimes the wolf, when seen on a journey, will lead you to a spiritual teacher and guide.”

In addition, various sources note:
“As a Celtic symbol, the Wolf was a source of lunar power. Celtic lore states that the Wolf would hunt down the sun and devour it at each dusk so as to allow the power of the moon to come forth…. To understand totem wolf symbols, one must first understand the heart of the Wolf. This takes time because the Wolf has had to endure many false stereotypes, misconceptions, and misunderstandings.
Some common traits that accompany totem wolf symbols: Intelligence, Cunning, Communication, Friendliness, Loyalty, Generosity, and Compassionate
Not at all the picture of ferocity or terror, the Wolf is a creature with a high sense of loyalty and strength. Another misconception is that of the “lone wolf.” To the contrary, the Wolf is actually a social creature, friendly, and gregarious with its counterparts.
The Wolf is an incredible communicator. By using touch, body movements, eye contact as well as many complex vocal expressions – the wolf makes his point understood. Those with totem wolf symbols are of the same inclination – they are expressive both vocally and physically. Those who have the wolf as their totem animal are naturally eloquent in speech, and also have knack for creative writing.
Totem wolf symbols belong to those who truly understand the depth of passion that belong to this noble creature. The Wolf is a representative of deep faith, and profound understanding. Further, the Wolf possess a high intellect, and have been observed using strategies about hunting, habitat and migration. “

The second ancient group of the Whalen namesakes noted in history are….
• O’Faoilain (The Wild One) - The second smaller but older bloodline ‘O Faoileain/Phelan’ came from either the Érainn Tribes (500-300 BC) or the Tuatha De Danann Tribes (300-100 BC) who invaded Ireland and were originally from Belgium (the Celtic Belgae Tribes that Caesar mentions in his chronicles) and Normandy respectively. The Whalen’s were part of a larger clan (Fitzpatrick were the Kings, then Chiefs of the line) that was centered in the Kingdom of Ossory, Leinster Province. The Phalen/Whalen’s were centered in the western plains of ‘Mahg Lacha’ in Upper Ossory. Subsets of our Whalen’s were the O Horahan and the Delany clans.

Just to really confuse things, evidently Clan names historically changed at times and ‘morphed’ into something completely different on occasion (perhaps ‘daughtered’ out). That happened to our Whalen’s in Ossory. Evidently, they were originally called O Kealy, and somehow it switched to Phalen/Whalen. It remained ‘our’ name for many centuries, and then changed again to O'Byrne in medieval times.

Finally, one researcher emailed me some information that contained an ancient poem regarding these Whalen’s:

“In Magh Lacha of the warm hill slopes
Is O'Faolain of manly tribe;
Extensive is the district due to them,
Which the O'Faolains have filled.”

The third possible group of Whalen ancestors from history are rather obscure and lesser in rank…

Some records say that this Whalen bloodline surname no longer exists although I have run into contradictory evidence as well. This Tribal name held the third highest Irish rank of ‘Noble Ruling Family’ in the social classes and order.

• O'FELAN -The third distinct Whalen clan has very little known about it at this time. It is known that social rank wise, it was considered a ‘Bardic Family’ and was centered in the north of Ireland in Ulster Province. The largest amount of information is on the Whalen’s in Armagh County, who are possibly a sept of Brassail Clan (MacCann’s) who were located at the south end of Lake ‘Lough Naogh’.
• A separate historical source has Whalen’s “In west Ulster it is O Fialain, being a distinct Bardic family”.
• Finally, another record denoting a variety of family names and locations has them noted simply as “O'FELAN, Fermanagh”, meaning of course that they were located in Fermanagh County, Ulster Province.

It is unclear if this name still exists. This Tribal name held the lesser but still considered privileged Irish rank of ‘Bardic Family’ in the social classes and order.

More Options, Never An Answer It Seems

It is interesting (and a little frustrating) to note, that while we have no clue which, if any of these above ancient bloodlines actually are the same as mine, we do have solid genealogical facts that could associate us with all three. In other words, all this research and we still can’t strike even one off the list!


08-07-2012, 12:20 AM
*this is yet another exerpt from the family saga I did, please ignore any references to my personal branch and know that the pictures did not copy over so some references might not quite make sense...

The Munster Whalen’s

Multiple Irish sources predominantly note the Whalen name means WOLF, and is in fact, an ancient Irish Sept (sub branch of a family or Clan) that can be found in its original Gaelic form as far back as the Third century AD. The original Gaelic form of the Whalen name seems to have been spelt two ways, the older “Ua Fáeláin” (from the Dark Ages) and relatively more recent “Ó Faoláin “ (starting in Medieval times). One Irish genealogical site reports, “Ó Faoláin, faol, wolf. A sept of the Decies, Waterford; Ó Faoláin was the first chief to fall resisting the Invasion in 1169. See also Phelan”

Another source notes the following explanation regarding the Whalen Tribe or Clans name actually being named the Deisi or Decies. Ancient Celtic records indicate that there were separate branches in both Northern and Southern Tipperary in addition to the eventually more powerful and Original group in Waterford and elsewhere.
One of the best synopses I’ve found is the following:
“Ó Faoláin is the name of an important Irish sept prominent in the southeast of the country. The name is derived from the Gaelic word "faol" meaning a wolf, "Faoláin" being a diminutive form (little wolf). The original Faoláin from whom the surname is derived, was nineteenth in descent from Fiacha Suidhe, a younger brother of Conn of the Hundred Battles, who reigned as High King for thirty five years until his death in A.D. 157. This makes the O Faoláin sept of the same origin as Commisky and Ó Bric.
It is natural that the present day representatives of the sept of Ó Faoláin should be found in the places mentioned, because their chiefs were Princes of the Decies, in west Waterford, before the arrival of the Normans.
Aryan (an ancient Druidic chronicler) speaks of them thus: "Two gentle chiefs whose names I tell, rule the Desies. I affirm it. O'Bric the exactor of tributes, with him the wise and fair O'Felan. In Moylacha of the fertile slopes, rules O'Felan for the benefit of his tribe. Great is the allotted territory, of which O'Felan holds possession".

Conn of the Hundred Battles
The actual ancient Irish Annals, that were the oral histories passed down through millennia first by the druids, and then by Celtic Bardic tradition and finally recorded by 4 medieval Irish Monks, list and give brief biographies of all the ‘Milesian Dynasty’ Irish High Kings and their lines from about 1800 BC to Elizabethan times. Modern historians generally agree that anything before 200 AD is not particularly reliable, but everything after that is surprisingly solid.

High King Conn of Ireland in a historically accurate picture from about 130 AD. Note the spear is the favoured weapon of choice for the Celts. Conn is the elder brother of the Faoláin founder, and thus the Great Uncle x 100 of any Decies Whalen

The story of ‘our’ High King Conn begins in 122 A.D., which is right on the cusp of historical reliability. This last quote from the Irish Annals pertains to our link to the High King of Ireland and his two younger brothers, one of which is the key ancestor of all the Ó Faoláin’s and eventual Whalen’s….
“80. Conn Ceadcathach or Conn of the Hundred Battles; his son (Ed. Note - they mean Conn is the son of the 108th High King Fedhlimidh [Felim] Rachtmar);
this Conn was so called from hundreds of battles by him fought and won: viz., sixty battles against Cahir Mór, King of Leinster and the 109th Monarch of Ireland, whom he slew and succeeded in the Monarchy; one hundred battles against the Ulsterians; and one hundred more in Munster against Owen Mór (or Mogha Nua-Dhad), their King, who, notwithstanding, forced the said Conn to an equal division of the Kingdom with him. He had two brothers - 1. Eochaidh Fionn-Fohart, 2. Fiacha Suidhe (Ed. Note-my Caps), who, to make way for themselves, murdered two of their brother's sons named Conla Ruadh and Crionna; but they were by the third son Art Eanfhear banished, first into Leinster, and then into Munster, where they lived near Cashel.
They were seated at Deici Teamhrach (now the barony of Desee in Meath), whence they were expelled by the Monarch Cormac Ulfhada, son of Art; and, after various wanderings, they went to Munster where Oilioll Olum, who was married to Sadhbh, daughter of Conn of the Hundred Battles, gave them a large district of the present county of Waterford, a part of which is still called Na-Deiseacha, or the baronies of Desies. They were also given the country comprised in the present baronies of Clonmel, Upper-Third, and Middle-Third, in the Co. Tipperary, which they held till the Anglo-Norman Invasion.
Conn reigned 35 years; but was at length barbarously slain by Tiobraidhe Tireach, son of Mal, son of Rochruidhe, King of Ulster. This murder was committed in the High Kings Palace at Tara, A.D. 157, when Conn chanced to be alone and unattended by his guards; the assassins were fifty ruffians, disguised as women, whom the King of Ulster employed for the purpose.

In any case, the original Faoláin noted in the Annals was the 19th direct descendant of Fiacha Suidhe who was in turn a younger son of the 108th Milesian Monarchs of Ireland Fedhlimidh (Felim) Rachtmar and seemingly the youngest brother of the 109th High King Conn Ceadcathach. Using very rough calculations, it seems our name first occurred around 820 A.D. Four generations later, Ó Faoláin is used as a surname in the Annals the very first time, and he is the Great Great grandson of the Faoláin. Not coincidentally, this occurs around 1070 A.D., just after the Norman Invasion of England and William the Conqueror’s instituting the practice of using Surnames.

What is particularly cool about this (and why I love this research) is I arrived at the 1070 date by counting backward and forwards the listed generations in the Annals and used their very occasional actual dates to figure they internally use 45-50 yrs. as a generation count. I did not know my rough calculation exactly matched the known historical reality of when surnames were first starting to be used until I was typing the above sentence.

Fiacha Suidhe’s Story-High King Conn’s Baby Brother
The following stories are about the Whalen’s name ultimate ancestor Fiacha and his mighty son Aonghus and they come from “THE HISTORY OF IRELAND -BOOK 1 AND 2 BY GEOFFRY KEATING-Section 44-XLIV”. (note how the spelling of various Gaelic names changes)

“As to Conn's other brother, namely, Fiachaidh Suighdhe, he got land near Tara (Ed Note-Ancient seat of Kings in Meath County), namely, the Deise Teamhrach; and he did not become king of Ireland.
Now he had three sons, namely, Rossa and Aonghus, (called Aonghus Gaoibuaibhtheach), and Eoghan, the third son. But Aonghus Gaoibuaibhtheach surpassed his contemporaries in valour.
And High King Cormac (Conn’s Grandson) at that time was at enmity with a powerful personage, and no one protected him from Cormac but Aonghus Gaoibuaibhtheach; and the king gave Aonghus to him as a security. Aonghus took this nobleman under his protection. But after this, Ceallach, son of Cormac, took this nobleman prisoner in violation of the security of Aonghus, and took out his eyes without the king's permission.

When Aonghus Gaoibuaibhtheach heard this, he proceeded to Tara, accompanied by a numerous host, and slew Ceallach by a cast of his spear, as he stood behind king Cormac in the court, and wounded the king himself in the eye, leaving him with only one eye. Cormac assembled a large host and banished Aonghus and his kinsmen.
These descendants of Fiachaidh Suighdhe involved Cormac in much fighting.
However, Cormac drove them into Leinster, and they remained there a year; and thence they went to Osruighe, and thence they came to Oilill Olom (King of Munster Province), whose wife, Sadhbh daughter of Conn, was their kinswoman and Aunt.
Oilill Olom gave them the Deise in Munster, for their native territory was the Deise Teamhrach, before they were banished by Cormac.
These three sons of Fiachaidh Suighdhe divided that territory between them into three parts; and they are called the descendants of Oilill Earann, and the Earna.

08-07-2012, 12:22 AM
Part 2...

These descendants of Fiachaidh Suighdhe, who are called the Deise, possessed only the district known as Deise Dheisceirt, that is, from the Siuir (river) southwards to the sea, and from Lios Mor to Ceann Criadain, up to the time when Eithne Uathach was married to Aonghus son of Natfraoch, king of Munster.
For it was about that time that Aonghus gave them Deise Thuaisceirt, that is, from the same Siuir to Corca Athrach, which is called the Plain of Cashel.
And O Faolain, who came from that stock, was king of Deise Thuaisceirt; and the place in which his residence was situated was on the brink of the Siuir to the west of Inis Leamhnachtaf (Ed. Note-1 mile west of Clonmel) ; and Dun Ui Fhaolain is the name it is called to-day.
Another kinsman of his occupied Deise Dheisceirt, and he was called O Bric; and he had his stronghold beside the sea, in the south, in the place which is now called Oilean Ui Bhric. And the Deise were divided thus between these two races until the race of O Bric became extinct; and O Faolain obtained the chieftainship of the two territories, and held it for a long period afterwards
These descendants of Fiachaidh Suighdhe, who are called the Deise, possessed only the district known as Deise Dheisceirt, that is, from the Siuir southwards to the sea, and from Lios Mor to Ceann Criadain, up to the time when Eithne Uathach was married to Aonghus son of Natfraoch, king of Munster. For it was about that time that Aonghus gave them Deise Thuaisceirt, that is, from the same Siuir to Corca Athrach, which is called the Plain of Cashel.

I know it can be difficult for the reader to get through some of these stories, given the very unfamiliar names, but I wanted to give a ‘flavour’ of what was going on back in the late Second Century with what would eventually become known as the Decies Tribe and specifically the eventual Whalen’s. It is very difficult to track down a site that has all the different information and I wanted to get at least some key parts documented.

The above fights are all between close kin, kin that would eventually be known as Whalen’s, be it nephews and uncles or first cousins. I’ve even seen one brief and very different story that tells of the split between High King Conn’s brother Fiacha, and Conn’s son High King Art and then grandson High King Cormac. This other version says the feud started because a niece of Fiacha’s was raped, and he killed the rapist, who was under the protection of Cormac for some reason. and that started the major family dispute. I have not been able to find solid enough documentation about the last story to put in the Saga, but it might help explain why Conn’s daughter Sadhbh, who married the powerful King of Munster, sided with Fiacha against her brother Art and gave them huge tracks of land in Munster after they were driven from Meath and Leinster.

Finally, I found a passage from the classic ‘History of Ireland’ that has a small poem regarding the beginning of the feud…like most poems, it doesn’t give us any key answers, but its fun to read:
The two brothers of Conn without faults
Were Eochaidh Fionn and Fiachaidh Suighdhe;
They slew Connla and Crionna,
Conn's two sons, two fair youths;

Art hated Eochaidh Fionn
After the two sons had been slain;
He took the name of Art Aoinfhear
After his two brothers were slain.

The poem seems to say that High King Art, son of Conn and surviving brother of the 2 slain ‘fair youths’ blamed only one of his uncles for the killings. It’s clearly stated that both Eochaidh and Fiachaidh did the killing, but Art only ‘hated’ Eochaidh for what had happened. It also says that High King Conn’s two brothers (‘our’ Fiachaidh. and the hated Eochaidh) were ‘without fault’, obviously meaning to portray them in a positive light. I’ve read many passages in this particular history, and believe me, if the author wanted to call them ‘treacherous scum’, or some similar negative characterisation, he would have.

I have no explanation for these contradictions and mysteries of how the Whalen’s ended up being ruling Princes in Waterford and Tipperary, but would remind the reader that Irish Scholars do believe these people actually existed, although a lot of mystical story telling gets woven into the tales (there are several well known and very magical stories regarding High King Art and his battling demons and other supernatural creatures).

Saying Our Name in Gaelic

On a point of pronunciation, I asked a man who used the DNA Forum’s web site (that I often visit for the DNA part of my research) and who is a Scot fluent in ancient Gaelic, how you would actually pronounce the ultimate founder of the Whalen name Fiacha Suidhe and our Clans original name O Faoláin. ‘Harry’ kindly responded using phonetic spelling to get the sounds right;

“Mike, as to your first query: Fee-uch-uh Soo-yeh (The ch is a guttural sound as in Scots 'loch', or Ugh! as an exclamation of disgust)’ and ‘As to O Faoláin, it's roughly Oh-Feh-lawn, with the stress on the last syllable”.

Druidic Oral Histories and Masterly Medieval Irish Monks

More generally, the oral Druid genealogies passed down literally over many centuries and were eventually made into key Irish historical records called the Annals by four Irish Monks. These ‘four Masters’ referred to the Whalen Tribe (the Deisi) and Clan many times. It should be noted that they seem to exclusively look at these Munster Whalen’s and not the Leinster or Ulster ones. The first entry being:
“For 265 (AD), Cormac afterwards fought and gained seven battles over the Deisi [of Mide/Breagh], in revenge of that deed (Ed Note- the killing of High King Cormac’s son as explained above), and he expelled them from their territory, so that they are now in Munster”.

The ancient Irish ‘Annals’ also note the ‘Ua Fáeláin’ (Whalen Sept of the Deice’s Tribe) in 265 AD and our surname ancestors were recorded as being involved in major power struggles for many years over the territory around the River Boyne in North East Ireland near Dublin and possibly Meath County. A quick look of the Annals shows that the Whalen’s were a warrior clan who seemed to be at constant battle with their neighbours.

Frankly, the various accounts in the Annals become very confusing, with many an entry noting year by year, and sometimes month by month, famous chieftains of our Tribe, winning, dying, losing, retreating, resurging, triumphing and falling over the centuries. In addition, it seems that there is more than one major Druidic genealogical history that had been written down (there seem to be four major ones), and while the ones I’ve seen seem to agree on most of the main facts, details nuances and dates change between them.


The following are a few quotes that, while rather confusing at first, use the ancient Gaelic titles and names to place the different major branches of the larger Whalen clan. The simple bottom line is, this ‘Whalen’ name comes from a powerful Irish Tribe that was based in Munster Province and was originally centered around the South east and coastal areas of Waterford, Tipperary, Dublin, Wexford, Wicklow and Carlow Counties. In good times we spread inland to parts of Kilkenny and Cork Counties, and in bad times, we retreated or were pushed back. It is unclear whether at some point the Tribe had a Kingdom in the Waterford area or whether it was considered a princedom. I have seen both terms used in respected documents. (Ed. Note - It appears to have been more of a Princedom as the Faoláin line came from the brother of a High King of Ireland, although some notes say Faoláin’s are ‘Kings of the Decies’).
It is probably useful to remember that the Irish had a general history of having dozens upon dozens of small ‘Kingdoms’ (up to 150 at one point) that were at times ruled by an over king or ‘High King’. I rather suspect many of the Irish ‘Kingdoms’, when compared to political entities elsewhere in England or the Continent, would be more the level of Earldoms and Duchies and not true Kingdoms. It does seem clear that the ancient Irish had a rather ‘liberal’ or forgiving definition of who was called a King.

In fact, it is well known that this very splintered and independent tribal/political arrangement in Ireland is what sabotaged a fierce and ‘well feared by others’ warrior society. This diffusion of power and parochial tribal allegiances allowed the Irish to be routinely conquered and subjugated by better-organized countries led by a single, powerful, absolute Monarch.

‘Dun Faelan’ or ‘Fort Whalen’

Irish records note that ‘our’ Fiacha Suidhe originally established his stronghold in the middle of Tipperary County, in what’s now know as the Baronies of Clonmel, Upper-Third, and Middle-Third. It is said he built on the banks of the River Suir, which meanders roughly down the center of Tipperary until it comes to the Ocean at Waterford City.

Mid Tipperary Co.- Castle of Cashel, better known as the ‘Rock of Cashel-only 25 km north of Clonmel, where we now know that Fiacha Suidhe, the true Whalen Patriarch built his ‘Stronghold’ around 200 AD and on the River Suir in south of the ‘Golden Vale’.

08-07-2012, 12:23 AM
part 3

We are also told that there was a major Whalen Fort or ‘Dun Faelan’ somewhere near the critical landmark and later seat of power called Cashel. The ‘Rock of Cashel’ is now one of the best preserved major Castles in Ireland and had been the Capital of the ancient kingdom of Thomond (which was the size of a province and roughly took up the ‘midsection’ of Ireland).

It is unknown exactly what sort of structure made up the Fort Whalen, but it likely was a ‘Hill Tower’ type design at first. It would have had anywhere from one to three protective walls around a central stone tower and the complex would be large enough to defend not only the Noble families, but much of the local populous. It should also be noted that it might have been built more than once, as it was common for new military designs to be introduced over the centruries to improve the structures. We know Fiacha would be considered the ‘Iron Age” when he first built the stronghold in the late 100’s AD. Later, when the Annals note that the Tribal chief ‘Fealen’ made his ‘Dun Feolain’, it would have been the ‘Dark Ages’ and around 500-600 AD.

Typically with structures like Dun Faelan, there was a 3 or 4 story round stone tower built on the top of a large hill. The Iron Age versions of these did not take full advantage of the size or location of the hill, whereas the Dark Age ones maximized natural terrain advantages. The bases of these towers could be 8-10 feet thick and the few surviving examples show an excellent mortar-less stonework craftsmanship rivalling Egyptian stonework.

A picture of a 2000 yr old ruins of an Irish Iron age Fort called Dun Aunges, similar to what Fiacha would have built around 200 AD. I especially like this picture because Dun Faelan was built on the banks of the River Suir and would have been of similar placement-note the largest inner wall and the succeeding outer walls

In any case, the Whalen Fortress would not look like the huge and massive castles we are used to seeing in pictures or movies today. Most of those are based on the huge and sophisticated Norman strongholds, or the even more modern King Henry the Eighth or King Louis the Fourteenth style ‘super’ Fortresses depicted in movies.

Dun Faoláin or Fort Whalen?
A good example of thick round stone tower type forts built on hilltops
It’s interesting to note that the Suir River runs fairly close to Cashel and one can’t help but wonder if the stronghold built by Fiacha Suidhe is the same structure that is later called Dun Faelan (remembering that the Faelan name did not appear in the line until 19 generations after Fiacha). I could not find any other information on the Whalen Fort other than to know for sure it existed in the Dark Ages (Ed Note-one mystery solved, see next update for the actual location of Dun Faoláin).

Update -March 2008-‘Our Fort, in the Rough’

The location for Dun Faoláin has been found and I was close in my guess!
Using the place name ‘Inis Leamhnachta’ from the annals when describing where Fiacha first made his stronghold near Cashel, I finally found a reference to it on the web, and upon examination, they clearly note the remains of Dun Faoláin or Fort Whalen.
The Dun Faoláin is located on the banks of the Suir River on a hill just 1 mile west of the town of Clonmel in Tipperary Co where it borders Waterford Co. It is located on what is now known as the 400 acre ‘Marlfield Estate’. Clonmel is in the south end of what’s known as the ‘Golden Vale’ (originally due to its excellent grazing land) of Tipperary and is only 25 km south southwest of the Rock of Cashel.

Once I found that, I was able to find the following confirmation in a Scholarly document from the History of Ireland web site:
Dun Ui Fhaolain-fort on the r. Suir to the west of Inis Leamhnachta- a mile west of Clonmel; the residence of O Faolain (King of Deise Dheisceirt).

Ironically, the remains of Dun Faoláin are smack dab in the middle of an elite golf course and housing development! A brochure for the Marlfield Estate says
“While archaeologists believe there is evidence of habitation on the estate dating back to the Bronze Age, the earliest surviving human imprint is an early Christian era Ring Fort, probably of the Ui Faoláin Clan, which now overlooks the 16th green”

So it turns out we do have the remnants of the Faoláin Ring Fort I predicted earlier and that according to the Marlfield archaeologists, was made around 500-600 AD.

Update - Aug. 2007-Real Princes, Who Woulda Thunk It?

I have purchased a huge historical map of Ireland that places all the family names recorded by either the Annals, modern historical scholarship or various government records upon it. This map notes the traditional social position of each name under ancient Ireland’s Brehon Laws. All these names are cross-referenced by ethnic origin and general family status with 14 separate categories.

Examples of traditional Irish social ranks are in descending order; King/Prince>Ruling Lord>Noble Chieftain Family> Bardic Family (poets, historians, heralds), and Erenach Family (managers of ecclesiastical lands). In addition, other important groups
such as Norman Families, Gallowglass Families, Scot, Welsh, and various others are listed.

It is a wonderful map that has been framed and hung in my house, not the least because I find the Whalen name 4 separate times, and each time we are noted as ‘Princes’ when indicating social position! All of the Whalen ‘Princes’ were found in the County of Waterford and were in 4 separate Baronies or districts. The four separate strongholds were noted as; ‘O’Felan’ and he was a Prince in the ‘Gaultive Barony;’ ‘O’Phelan’, a Prince in ‘Decies’, ‘O’Felan (Whalen)’ a Prince in ‘Coshbride;’ and ‘O’Felan’ a Prince in ‘Upper Third’ (bordering Tipperary Co.).

It’s fascinating to note that the ‘(Whalen)’ in parenthesis in the above line is actually on the map and uses ‘our’ specific spelling of WHALEN. I have no explanation for that as I always understood the ‘Whealen/Whelan’ variations to be older. Perhaps it’s Whalen that is the oldest.

The following is a brief quote from a textbook that gives some other details about our tribe and indicates they once controlled territory up to Dublin itself:

”The Déisi Mumhan were of County Waterford and southern County Tipperary. Sept’s included Ua Bric (O'Brick) and Ua Fáeláin (Phelan/Whelan/Whalen). The earlier origins of the Déisi are stated to be on the plains of the River Boyne (near Dublin), where the tribes of the Deisi Brega continued to flourish in early medieval times. An ancient genealogy has the Ua Fáeláin of Déisi in descent from “Fiacha Suidhe”, a brother of High King Conn Ceadchathach (of the Hundred Battles and High King of Ireland).”

A map showing the location of the various Irish Tribes, using Gaelic names just prior to the Norman Invasion of 1100-I have inserted the two ‘Whalen’ Castle locations( see ‘Phalen’ & ‘Dun Faoláin’) to give a frame of reference, along with a large ‘WHALEN’ to show the traditional Princedom of the Whalen’s

Deisi Tuaiscirt-the Tipperary Co. Branch

Another quote that narrows down the exact sub branch of the Deisi that our Tipperary Whalen’s might have come from:
”The Déise Becc (Déisi Bicce) was noted regarding the Baronies of Small County and Coshlea in southeast county Limerick. The parish of Athneasy, alias Áth na nDéise, is said to derive it’s name from the Déise Becc. They are sometimes referred to as 'In Déis Deiscirt' to distinguish them from their northern neighbours, the 'In Déis Tuaiscirt' who is represented in the Dal gCais. However the terms déisi tuaiscirt and Déise Deiscirt were also applied to the O'Felans and O'Brics of north and south Decies (Dési Muman), respectively.”

So, to translate the above, the Faoláin’s were first the northern branch of the Decies (or ‘Deisi Tuaiscirt’) and ruled in Tipperary, while their close cousins the O’Brics (or ‘Deisi Deiscirt’) ruled the southern or Waterford Decies. It’s unclear how long that lasted, but it began around 200 AD, and at some point, the Faoláin’s either pushed out or in some way, took over from the O’Brics. This left our Whalen’s as the sole rulers of the Decies for many centuries and the Tuaiscirt and Deiscirt ‘tags’ were dropped as meaningless.

One last note for the reader if you have stuck with me so far, is the use of the original Gaelic for name places and family names can get very confusing. The fact that they use different spellings for the same darn word, sometimes in one paragraph (see the paragraph above for a good example), illustrates some of the challenges of genealogy and the task of teasing out meaningful information from ancient sources.

Here Is A Mouthful
In summation, there is a real possibility that our Family name stems from the Ancient Gaelic “DÈISI” Tribe (in what’s now known as Munster Province, Waterford and various surrounding county areas), of the “DÈISI TUAISCIRT” Branch (Tipperary County), of the Sept “UA FAELÀIN” (the Wolf), which ultimately produced the modern PHELAN-WHELAN-WHEALEN-WHALEN family names.

Deisi > Deisi Tuaiscirt > Ua Faelain >O’Faoláin> Phelan >Whealen >Whalen

We can also say our family name is possibly descended from an Irish High King of the Ancient Milesian dynasty. Our name ultimately comes from a man named Fiacha Suidhe who was one of the younger sons of the 108th High King Fedhlimidh (Felim) Rachtmar and a younger brother of the very famous and successful 109th High King, Conn Ceadcathach, or Conn of the Hundred Battles.

Finally, according to recent Irish Census statistics, the Phalen/Whalen name is among the 50 most common Irish surnames in Ireland (44th to be precise). It is estimated that there are some 12,000 souls with a Phelan/Whelan surname in Ireland with most living in the Province of Munster and in the counties of Waterford and Kilkenny and the neighbouring areas.

08-07-2012, 12:24 AM
part 4

Can I Have My Counties Back, Now Please

The reader might have picked up on this last point before, but to be clear, if you’re wondering what happened to our ‘Princedom”, there was a little thing called the 2nd Norman Invasion. In 1169 Henry, the grandson of William the Conqueror, authorized a Norman invasion of Ireland (led by Duke Strongbow and his Norman, Welsh and Flemish troops) and it was the east coast (our coast) of Ireland that first felt the brunt of it, and the first landing occurred at Waterford.

The annals proudly note that it was a brave Prince and Chieftain of the Decies Tribe who first resisted the Norman invaders and fell in the onslaught. After the conquest, the remnants of the Decies were pushed inland (Tipperary was one of the most common refuges it seems, along with Kilkenny Co and possibly Cork Co.). They certainly lost their land and probably most, if not all their influence, as did almost all other Celtic families. The ‘Powers’ family primarily supplanted them in their old territory as they were major supporters of Duke Strongbow and the English/Norman King Henry.

and the following is a response from a friend at the old dna forums, 'Dubhthach', who knows a heck of alot more about the Irish language than I do, he adds...

"specifically Faolán means "little wolf" the suffix "-án" implies a dimunitive in the Irish language. The spelling of the nominative singular form of name is Faolán this is what the man would have been know as. In Irish surnames are in the genitive cause. The genitive singular of Faolán been Faoláin thence: Ó Faoláin

In Middle Irish Ó was written as Ua. In comparison Uí is pronuned as ee (in Irish vowel combinations the Long vowel is the one pronounced), Uí also has a more broader meaning and would be used in expressions such as "Clann Uí Faoláin" (The Children of Faolán -- Clann == one's children) or Bean Uí Faoláin (The wife of Ó Faoláin -- Mrs. Ó Faoláin) Ó literally means grandson/descendant.

Pronunciation depends on dialect in Munster the AO vowel cluster is pronunced like a long e (É) sort of like the ay in bay or ey in whey
In Ulster/Connacht ao is pronunced as long i (í) like the ee in bee

á (long a) is sort of like the aw in lawn or yawn

Initial F when broad also tends to have an offglide sound which is sort like a w (it's kinda like a half-vowel)

So you will here pronunciation like Fwee-lawn and Fway-lawn

Thence angliscations like Phealan, Whealan, Whalen these tend to somewhat reflect the local dialectical variation in Irish language.
Anyways another way of saying wolf is "Faolchú" (Cú = hound/dog), the most common expression now adays is "Mac Tíre" (Son of the country -- thence the surname McAteer)

In comparison a Wolfhound is "cú faoil" (faoil = genitive of Faol)


Vickie Whitty
05-10-2014, 10:24 PM
Mike My married name is Whitty, how ever I was born with the last name Whalen . Upon research I have found two family crests, one from England and one from Ireland, I don't know very much about my family, is there some way to trace back and find out? My Father Stanley Wilber Whalen, And grandfather Thomas Jefferson Whalen, I know my father was born in Tennesse in 1918, but thats about all I know.

05-12-2014, 01:16 PM
Hi Vickie, welcome to the forum!
We have had many women be the ones that took an interest in their fathers line's genealogy, my co-admin of the whalen/phalen dna surname project, Francis, has done a great amount of work on her dads line.

The key is getting a male that is in that line to get DNA tested, and STR test is the best for this (there are 2 basic types of test...STR & SNP, each is very useful for different questions). Is your dad still alive and would he be willing to do a mouth swab to collect the DNA needed? A biological brother or son or even his father would do, but as a girl, thats one thing you cant supply yourself.

If you did have one of your Whalen male donors, then you could first join the Whalen/Phalen DNA surname project (to get a discount on the price of the testing) and then test for a couple of hundred bucks, the 67 STR test by FTdna-then you can compare your results with both our projects (we have 70-80 Whalen males tested now with about 8-9 distinct groupings) and the FTdna data base....if you get a good match, that can often (but not always) break through your genealogical 'brick wall' and link you up with kin you did not know of and also any paper trail back to Ireland they might have

Of course, traditional pen and paper genealogical research is great and I dont know if you have done much on that. If you have and are at a dead end (as I am with my line) then a DNA match is the only hope to get around it.

as for the crests, are either of these the ones you saw?
1858 1859

when doing my research on my family line some years ago, I dubbed the one on the left the the Leinster Whalen crest as the knight that was awarded it was originally from that province. The other one was dubbed the Munster Crest, its author unknown but the stags head is the ancient symbol for Munster province. Historically, there were well known but distinctly different Whalen/Phelan clans based in each provice, with the Powerful Dicies Tribe in Munster and the middle power Barons of Offaly in Leinster

For 100 bucks, I had created the Whalen crest you see as my avitar, quite personalized for my family line...great fun and means nothing of course...there are some very serious 'crestology' guys that go on about the official rules and how no one else can clam the crests but 1 special guy and so forth...and that most crests are modern (meaning last few hundred years) and meaningless....I cheerfully ignore all them and have my crest on my coffee mug and key chain :)

anyway, hope this helps..check out the link at the bottom of my sig to see our surname web site to see how it all sorta works...feel free to ask questions, Francis is better at some things than I and she is super helpfull



05-13-2014, 05:24 PM
after getting an inquiry the other day about our Whalen-Phelan dna surname project, I thought I would post jpgs of our results table and make a few general observations about our results
-on the 4 screen shots of our projects, the list was cut off at the 52nd STR tested, but it goes on to a full 111 for those that got tested that far
-my Co Admin Francis does a great job inputting the data and then seeing what, if any, grouping the test results belong to
-we have STR results from a variety of companies such as FTdna, National Geographic Project (N), Ancestry.com (A), and SMFG

We have a total of 84 men tested and belonging to the project
We have a total of 16 distinct groupings, based on the STR values
We have 8 groups that have more than 2 members belonging to them
Our results are clearly Celtic/Irish based for our members

***depending on what software you use to look at the pics, you might need to save it to your computer and then open it max/full screen size, as some defaults will make it very small and hard to write letters
...full screen and you should have no problems reading it


the following are the different Haplo/SNP groupings we have, how many members belong and names/places if relevant and in decending order of size of grouping...

R1b-L144...38 men...Whalen, Bracewell, Phalen, Fallen, Keenen Bracewell/Brazile, Prosser, Clark, MacLaughlin, MacAuley
R1b general, non specific Atlantic Modal....10...Whelan, Whalen, Phalen
R1b-Leinster/Irish Sea modal....5.....Whelan, Whalen
R1b-L21 general, non specific....4....Whalin, Whalen
R1b-L21-M222-NW Irish/Type 1 modal....4...Whelehan, Wheeler
R1b-L21-M222-Nw Irish/Type 1 modal....3....Whelehan of Ullard, Laois
R1b-L21-M222-NW Irish/Type 1 modal, general, non specific....Whalen, Phelan, Whelan
R1b-L21-Z253-Irish/Cont. Type 4 modal...3....Whalen, Whelan, Phelan
R1b-L21-L513...2+...Whealen, Vance....NPE re Whalen & many Vances...ultra rare 19 at dys456
R1b-L21-Z253-L226...Irish Type lll modal...2...Whalen, Phelan
R1b-L21-CTS4466...South Irish Type 2 modal....2....Whalon, Whelan
R1B-L21-DF21..."Ely O'Carrol Clan Type"...2...Phelan, Whalen
G-2-Phelan, Phalen
J-2-Whalen, Phelan



05-13-2014, 05:58 PM
Here is a further breakdown of our Projects groups, with some explanations of geography or other type connections by my Co admin Francis (Rivergirl)

"Updated 26 April 2014


Whalen - O'Faolain members are grouped by their Y-DNA Haplogroup, then by Haplogroup subgroup and/or clusters.

R1b is the largest Y-DNA Haplogroup in the project, (and the major Y-DNA Haplogroup in Ireland ), we also have Haplogroups G, I2 and J present in small numbers.
Men of different Y-DNA Haplogroups will have no likelihood of sharing a common ancestor in the last several thousand years (NPEs are of course a reality and may be a reason why your paper trail tells a different story.)

R1b Haplogroups are subgrouped into known Genetic clusters where possible, and these will be updated as new results come in.
See the R1b-L21 Phylogenetic Tree at the bottom of this page.

Haplogroup G
Kit# N8175
Richard Phalen, b.c. 1800, Callan, Co Kilkenny Ireland

Kit# 278127
James Phelan bc 1766 , Mullinahone, Co. Tipperary, Ireland.

Haplogroup I2
Kit# 221140
Thomas Hyland, b 1845, Ireland, died Dublin Ireland.

Haplogroup J2
Kit# N56036
Thomas Whalen, b 1890, Ontario Canada.

Kit# 71925
James Phelan, b 1794, Grantstown, Co Laois Ireland.

Haplogroup Q
Kit# 267675
Thomas Whelan, b 1871

R1b Group 01 (R-L21>DF13>CTS1751>L144)
We have one large group who appear to have a common lineage, and are mainly from Co Laois, Kilkenny, Waterford, Tipperary and Cork in Ireland.
Most of these men are all "WAMH" Matches (Western Atlantic Model Haplotype), one of the four most common R1b haplotypes in Western Europe, so have many (~500) exact matches at 12 markers.

At 37 markers all the men in this group match another in the group at 33/37 or better and continue matching well at 67 and 111 markers.
The relationship between these men appears to be quite convoluted and it is very hard to group these men into smaller subgroups with a more recent common ancestry, especially as very few of these men have a paper trail to connect with.

The group share a unique value for DYS markers 413a and 413b of 16/23, whilst most R1b men have results around 21/23, 22/23, or 23/23.
So far all the men in "R1b Group 01" who have tested to 67 markers have values of 16/23, 16/16 or 16/17 and 16/22 on this marker, signifying a descent from a common ancestor.

Six men in this group have tested positive for the R1b SNP L144.1. This SNP is downstream of the large R1b branch of L21. (See R1b-L21 Phylogenetic Tree at bottom of this page.)
It is expected that all the men in this group would be positive for these SNPs. Other surnames tested positive for L144.1 are Bracewell/Brazile, Prosser, Clark, MacLaughlin, MacAuley, Keenan.

Recent (Oct 2013) SNP testing has shown that L144 is downstream of CTS1751. So far 2 Whalens, 2 Brazilles and a Prosser have tested positive for CTS1751, and it is presumed all this cluster will be positive for CTS1751.

Here is a Google Map with known UK place of origin for 413a=16 and/or L144,1 men; http://goo.gl/maps/2hYk

Kit# A00006 Tested at Ancestry
Phelan, Nenagh, Co Tipperary Ireland

Kit# 132634
James Whalen, bc 1750
Edward Whalen Sr, bc 1801, marr Charlotte J Thomas
John William Whalen, b 1848 IN, marr Mary Susan Maulding
Roscoe Vern Whalen, b 1890 IN, marr Maude Butler

Kit# 99672
James Phelan, b 1828, Co Kilkenny Ireland, marr Bridget Mooney.
Martin Phelan, b 1867, Cedar Lake, Scott Co. MN, marr Anna B Harps.

Kit# N2349
Andrew Whalen, b 1829, Dublin Ireland, marr Ann Riley
James Riley Whalen, marr Hettie Wood
Andrew Jefferson Whalen, b 1898, marr Katie Wells

Kit# 98399
John Phelan, b 1759, Durrow, Co Laois Ireland, marr Catherine Boe.
James Phelan, b 1807, Durrow, Co Laois Ireland, marr Ellen Murphy.
William Phelan, b 1845, Durrow, Co Laois Ireland, marr Sophia Alice Soloman.
Name change on migration to England.
Henry Robert Fielding, b 1885, England, marr Mary Hodgson.

Kit# 225748
Whalen, b 1928 New Jersey.

Kit# 116314
John Whalen, b abt 1790, possibly of Co Kilkenny Ireland, marr Mary Walsh.
Patrick Whalen, b abt 1830, NS Canada, marr Bridget Hackett.
John T. Whalen, b 1878, PE Canada, marr Catherine Hamill.

Kit# N40925
Solomon Whalen, b 1749 Ireland.
Solomon Whalen Jr, Kentucky.
Joseph Whalen
Elza R Whalen

Kit# N25286
Solomon Whalen, b 1749 Ireland.
Henry Whalen, b c1766 Harrison Co KY or c1760 Ireland, marr Nancy
?John William? Whalen, b 1805, marr Mary Montier
Washington Wesley Whalen, b 1832, marr Rachel Carr
Samuel Benjamin Whalen, b 1865/66 Harrison Co KY, marr Callie M F Maines
John Wesley Whalen, b 1894 Falmouth, Pendleton Co KY, marr Cora Catherine Wall/Wahl

Kit# 87323
William Phelan, Co Kilkenny (possibly Holdensrath) Ireland, marr Margaret Butler
Laurence Phelan, b 1835, Co Kilkenny Ireland, marr Julia Meaney
William Phelan, b 1869, Ballarat, VIC Australia, marr Annie Keys

Kit# 87011
John Whalen, b Ireland, marr Mary Power
Martin Whalen, b 1830, Co Waterford Ireland, marr Ellen Power
Richard Whalen, b 1865, NY State, marr Alice Putney
Francis Whalen, b 1899, NY State marr Verna Reuman

Kit # 186745
Patrick Phelan
Joseph Phelan b Ballyraggett parish, Kilkenny marr Catherine Brennan
John Phelan b 1790 Ballyraggett, Kilkenny married Mary Phelan
Patrick Phelan b 1830, St Scholastique, Quebec Canada marr Sarah O'Brien
Michael Phelan b 1859, St Columban, Quebec Canada marr Mary Funchion

Kit# 136758 and SMGF
Matthew Whalen, marr Mary Nolan
Patrick Joseph Whalen, b 1870 Co Tipperary Ireland, marr Annie Heaphy

Kit# 84389
William Whalen, b 1857, Philadelphia PA, died Minneapolis MN.

Kit# 55192 and SMGF
John Phelan, b 1715, Co Laois Ireland.
Thomas Phelan, b 1750-60, Ireland
Michael Phelan, b 1785, nr Erill, Co Laois Ireland
Martin Whelan, b bef 1830, Co Laois Ireland, marr Catherine
Martin Whelan/Whalen, b 1839, Erill, Co Laois Ireland, marr Mary
John Whalen, b 1872, Oakland Co MI, marr Emma

Kit# 159645 and A00009
Michael Whelan, b Ireland, possibly Co Waterford, marr Catherine Cody
Michael J. Whelan, b ?Philadelphia-?Ireland about 1856, marr Mary Ellen Hackett in NYC
Edward R. Whelan, b NYC 1885, marr Mary Ellen Reader in NYC

Kit# 288752
Charles Fallon/Fallin, bc 1646, d. 1701, Northumberland County, VA, marr Jane
Charles (II) Fallin/Fallon, bc 1683, Northumberland County, VA, marr Hannah Harcum
Charles (III) Fallin, b.1720, Northumberland County, VA, marr Sarah Hobson

Kit# 211618
Charles Fallon/Fallin, bc 1646, d. 1701, Northumberland County, VA, marr Jane
Charles (II) Fallin/Fallon, bc 1683, Northumberland County, VA, marr Hannah Harcum
Charles (III) Fallin, b.1720, Northumberland County, VA, marr Sarah Hobson
William Fallin b 1749, Northumberland Co., VA, marr Sarah Eskridge
Thomas Fallin, b 1771, Northumberland Co., VA, marr Polly (Mary) Haynie
Samuel E Fallin, bc 1800, VA, marr Elizabeth Hendley
Joseph Hendley Fallin, bc 1824, Richmond County, VA, marr Virginia Susan Rice
Ira Stanely Fallin, b 1855, Lancaster Co. VA, marr Eliza Larrabee Ness
Edgar Hamilton Fallin, b 1878, Baltimore MD, marr Anna Leola Holcombe

Kit #320149
Charles Fallin I b. 1646 - St. Stephens Parish Northumberland County, Virginia
Charles Fallin II b. 1683 - Northumberland County, Virginia
Charles Fallin III b. 1720 - Northumberland County, Virginia
Charles Fallin IV b. 1740 - Northumberland County, Virginia
Thomas Jack Fallin b. 1787 - Lunenburg County, Virginia
Jackson Fallin b. 1815 - Wilkes County, Georgia
Simeon Fallin b: 1856 - Upson County Georgia
William Rufus Fallin b: 1893 - Lafayette, Alabama

Kit# 238031
Charles Fallin I b. 1646 - St. Stephens Parish Northumberland County, Virginia
Charles Fallin II b. 1683 - Northumberland County, Virginia
Charles Fallin III b. 1720 - Northumberland County, Virginia
Charles Fallin IV b. 1740 - Northumberland County, Virginia
Thomas Jack Fallin b. 1787 - Lunenburg County, Virginia
Jackson Fallin b. 1815 - Wilkes County, Georgia
William Crockett Fallin b. 1845 - Upson County, Georgia
William Jackson Fallin b. 1867 - Fulton County, Georgia

Kit# 100127
William Whalen, possibly born Ireland
Thomas Whalen, b 1868, East St Louis, Illinois

Kit# 288432
Martin Whalen, born 1829 (Kildare?) died 1880 Ohio

Kit# N79988
Patrick Whalen, bc 1795, County Cork, Ireland, marr Bridget Murphy
John Whalen, b 1832, South March, Carleton County, Ontario, Canada, marr Mary Brennan
Patrick Whalen, b 1860, South March, Carleton County, Ontario, Canada, marr Hannorah Kennedy

Kit# 76690
Whelan, bc 1840, Co Cork Ireland.

Kit# 320464
George Phelan, b 1927

Kit# A00003 Tested at Ancestry
Whelan - No information provided.

Kit# 86333
John Phalen, b 1826-1836, Ireland, possibly Co Waterford, marr Mary Murphy (1), Mary Welsh(2)
Edward Joseph Phalen, b 1848, Ireland, possibly Co Waterford, marr Mary Dunn
John Joseph Phalen, b 1879, Kingston NY, marr Elisabeth Cavanaugh

Kit# 154312
Thomas Phelan, 1726, marr Elizabeth Howard Day
Thomas Phelan, b 1752, marr Mary Evans
Thomas Wesley Phelan, b 1790 GA , d 1851 AR, marr Jemima Fowler, 1815 TN
Jesse Phelan, b 1826, d MO, marr Lavenia Fanning, 1853 AR
Joseph Martilius Phelan, b 1858 MO, d OK, marr Sarah Elizabeth Burns, 1883 AR
Toy Jesse Thomas Phelan, b 1894 MO, d OK, marr Annie Mildren Cowden

Kit# 109506 and A00002 (Tested at Ancestry.com)
Thomas Phelan, b 1752, Uwchlan Township, Pennsylvania, died Arkansas.
Thomas Phelan, b 1790, Georgia.
Thomas Phelan, b 1828, Tennessee, died Arkansas.
William Washington Phelan, b 1852, Arkansas.
Oda Embris Phelan, b 1890, Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Kit# 87322
Nicholas Phalen, b 1828, Co Kilkenny Ireland, marr Margret Welsh
Nicholas Charles Phalen, 1867, Mendota IL, marr Fedelia Wallace

Kit# 83115
Hugh Whalin, c1800, Co Laois Ireland.
Patrick Whelan, c1825, Co Laois Ireland.
Thomas Whelan, c1848, Co Laois Ireland.
Michael Whelan, b 1879, Bathgate, WLN Scotland.

Kit# 137617
Michael Whelan b: c1780, Queens County, Ireland
Andrew Arthur Whelan b: 1816, Co Tipperary, Ireland
John Whalen b: 1853, Jamberoo, NSW, Australia
Ralph Whalen b: 1872, Macleay River, NSW, Australia
William Maurice Whalen b: 1898, Kempsey, NSW, Australia

Kit# 99152
Michael Phelan, b 1760, of Durrow, Co Laois Ireland.
Daniel Phelan, b 1794, Ireland
James Phelan, b 1822, Co Laois Ireland, marr Mary Gaynor
Samuel Phelan, b 1857, NYC, New York, marr Catherine Mayer
James Joseph Phelan, b 1882, NYC, New York, marr Anna Mulqueen

Kit# 128412
J Whalen, born Ireland died Pennsylvania. Emigrated 1848-1850
J J Whalen, born Ireland died Pennsylvania.
J M Whalen, born 1874 Pennslyvania.

Kit# 107097
James Whalan, b abt 1794 Ireland
James Patrick Whalan, b 1821, Co Queens/Laois Ireland.

Kit# N96953
Anthony Phelan, bc 1809-10, County Wexford, Ireland.
Charles Anthony Phelan, b 1852, St. Croix, Virgin Islands.
Charles Henry Phelan, bc 1881, Brooklyn, New York.

R1b Group 01a (R-L21>DF13>CTS1751>L144) Irish Type matches
These men match well with the above group and are linked genetically. They are from the same region as our Whalen/Whelan/Phelans. The connection is possibly from before the common adoption of surnames in Ireland or from a change of family name at some stage.

Kit# 269951
William Moore, b 1818, Co Offaly (Kings) Ireland

Kit# B3096
Thomas Keenan, bc 1790, Culahill, Co Laois, Ireland

Kit# 182076
John Barton bc 1884, of Carrick on Suir, Co Tipperary Ireland

R1b Group 02 (R-L21,>DF13>L513)
This group has a 64/67 match with Kits 53712, Patrick Whalen b 1816 Co Tipperary and 109320, Vance.
The Whalen and Vance families are undoubtedly connected by an NPE that probably occurred between 1650 and 1750 in Ireland according to MRCA calculations (90% probability of 12 generations @ 25yrs per generation). An extremely rare but shared value of 19 at dys456 along with matches from 65/67 to 63/67 with several distinct Vance families prove the intimate relationship. No known connection has been found with confirmed paper and pen genealogy going back to the early 1800's.
We hope to find more Whalen family's for this group.

They R1b L513, a downstream subgroup of R1b L21, they have distinctive results of 11 for 406S1 and 13 for 617.

Kit# 53712 and SMGF
Patrick Whealen, b 1816, Co Tipperary Ireland, marr Deborah Collins
William Whalen, b 1858, Kincardine, Ontario CAN, marr Mary Ann Robinson
William Laurence Whalen, b 1884, Kincardine, Ontario CAN, marr Alice Gertrude Holly

Kit# 109320
Vance, Ireland,

R1b Group 03 (R-L21>DF13 - 390=21, 459a/b=9/9)
We have four men in this group. We can see that they share some distinctive unusual values in DYS 390 = 21 and YCA II a/b = 22/23 .
These men also share the distinctive values with men of other surnames, the main ones being Fitzpatricks from Co Laois/Kilkenny, Brennan/Brannons, Brodericks and Dalton .
This indicates a more ancient relationship between these families, possibly up to a 1000 years ago. These surnames are associated with the ancient Ossory/Ossraighe region

Kit# 159345
Patrick Whalin, b 1738 Ireland, marr, Susannah Leach
Valentine Whalin, b abt 1780 Montgomery VA, marr Barbara Penner
William Patrick Whalin, b 1804 Montgomery VA, marr Lucinda P Goodman
William Goodman Whalin, b 1839 Warren KY, marr Lucrecia Frances Doolin
Thomas J Whalin, b 1865 Edmonson KY, marr Otilla Adeline Ray

Kit# 294561
Patrick Whalin - b. 1738 Ireland - Revolutionary War soldier - m. 777 - died 1831 Warren Co, KY
Valentine Whalin - b. Fauquier Co, VA
Christian Whalin - b. Montgomery Co, VA
William Hartford Whalin - b. Butler Co, KY
John Milton Whalin - b. Edmonson Co, KY

Kit# 169898
Charles Whalen, bc 1835 Indiana, marr Susan
William Thomas Whalen, b 1867 Illinois, marr Ellen Nichols

Kit# 114211
Thomas Daniel Whalen, Trenton New Jersey, marr Irene Bomberry/Bumberra

R1b Group 04 (L21>DF13>DF49>M222 - Northwest Irish Type I)
This group comprises three men all tracing back to a common ancestor, Michael Whelehan, bc 1795 in Ullard, Co Laois, Ireland.
They are part of the R1b North West Irish Type I Cluster.

Kit# 164953
Michael Whelehan, bc 1795 Ireland, marr Mary Dunne
Bernard "Barney" Whelehan, bc 1819 Ullard, Co Laois Ireland, marr Ellen Broughill
Christopher Wheelehan, b 1858
Bernard Wheelehan, b 1895

Kit# 158362
Michael Whelehan, bc 1795 Ireland, marr Mary Dunne
Bernard "Barney" Whelehan, bc 1819 Ullard, Co Laois Ireland, marr Ellen Broughill
Michael Whelehan, b 1848 Ullard, Co Laois Ireland, marr Catherine Slevin
Bernard Whelehan, b 1894 Co Laois Ireland, marr Margaret Dunne

Kit# 139965
Michael Whelehan, bc 1795 Ireland, marr Mary Dunne
Michael Wheelahan, b 1822 Ullard, Co Laois Ireland, marr Mary Ann Clarke
Edmund John Wheelahan, b 1864 New Orleans LA, marr Avonia Elizabeth Troyer
Keith John Wheelahan, b 1898 New Orelans LA

R1b Group 05 (L21>DF13>DF49>M222 - Northwest Irish Type I)
This group has 5 members, all Whelehans. They are most probably related to the Whelehans in R1b Group 04, but further back in time

Kit# 209010
Michael Whelehan, b 1760, Derrymore Kilucan, Co Westmeath Ireland
John Whelehan, b 1802, Derrymore Kilucan, Co Westmeath Ireland
Matthew Whelehan, b 1841, Derrymore Kilucan, Co Westmeath Ireland
Patrick Whelehan, b 1898, Derrymore Kilucan, Co Westmeath Ireland

Kit# 229832
Thomas Whelehan, b 1886, Derrymore, Co Westmeath, Ireland

Kit# 193057
Whelehan, Co Westmeath Ireland.

Kit# 190446
Cornelius Wheelahan, Nenagh, Co Tipperary, Ireland, marr Mary Henan
Denis Wheelahan, b 1835, marr Bridget O'Grady
Cornelius Wheelahan, b 1866, marr Annie Leicht

Kit# N99789
Bernard Wheeler/Wheelehan, b abt 1790, Gainstown, Co Westmeath Ireland

R1b Group 06 (R-L21>DF13>Z253 - Irish and Continental/Type IV)
We will need 93207 to test more markers, to see if this match continues or not.
These men appear to be in a R1b cluster, the Irish/Continental Type IV, which has the distinctive marker values of; 391 = 10, 385a = 12, 385b = 15, 426 = 13.
The cluster is associated with the SNP Z253.


Kit# A00008 Tested at Ancestry
Robert Whalen, b 1826, Ireland, marr Ellen McGraw.
John William Whalen, b 1862, Ohio, marr Mary V O'Hara.
Raymond John Whalen, b 1896, Cleveland Ohio, marr Edythe M Rousseau.

Kit# 264003
Whelan - No Information provided.

Kit# 93207
Phelan - No information provided.

R1b Group 07 (R-L21>DF13>Z255>L159.2, - Leinster/Irish Sea Type)
This group comprise men who match a R1b "cluster" associated with several historical Irish Clan names such as O’Byrne (Lagin Chieftans), Beatty, McLaughlin (a Kings of Meath sept)- a fairly small cluster or modal
Other than 15c 15c 17g 17g at 464x, other distinctive markers are;
14, 13, 30 at 389i, 392, 389ii,
18 at 448,
11 at 442
CDY a and b have high values.

More information on the "Leinster Type" can be seen at the 464x Project and the R1b-L159.2 project


Kit# 105824
Augustin Whelan, b 1852, Co Limerick Ireland.

Kit# 141733
Thomas Whalen, b Ireland
Moses/Aden Whalen b 1827/29 Co Wexford Ireland.
James Whalen, b 1851/54 b St Louis MO.
Thomas Whalen, b 1894 Nehama County Nebraska.

Kit# A00001 Tested at Ancestry
John Whalen marr Mary Sullivan
James H Whalen, b 1849 Dungarven, Co Waterford Ireland, marr Mary Ann Dempsey.

Kit# 85957
Peter Whelan, b c1865, Enniscorty, Co Wexford Ireland, marr Catherine Cahill.
Joseph Whelan, b 1891 Dublin Ireland, marr Josephine Kenny.

SMGF01 Tested at SMGF
Edward Whalan, b Ireland, marr Mary Hannah Dodge
John Edward Whalan, b 1880 Hodgenville, Larue, Kentucky, marr Elizabeth Lavada Donaldson

R1b Group 08 (R-L21>DF13>DF21)
2 members who are DF21 though not closely related to each other.
You can find out more about DF21 at this website http://www.familytreedna.com/public/R-DF21/default.aspx

212914 is DF21 and in the subgroup L1402.

Kit# 212914
Patrick Phelan, early 1800's, of Queen's County (Laois) Ireland
Daniel Phelan, b abt 1832, Queen's County (Laois) Ireland.
Patrick Joseph Phelan, b 1891, Queen's County (Laois) Ireland .

N45462, is part of the "Ely O'Carroll" Type within DF21
You can find out more about this cluster from the website;

Kit# N54562
Patrick Whalen, b 1838, Ireland, marr Bridget Tobin.
Michael Whalen, b 1859, Ireland, marr Margaret L Finnerty.
Thomas Henry Whalen, b 1884, Frankfort New York, marr Anna Isabel Roach.

R1b Group 09 (R-L21>DF13>DF49>M222, - NW Irish/Type I) Various
This group comprises men who match a R1b "cluster" associated with NW Ireland and Lowland Scotland. It is often associated with "Niall of the Nine Hostages".
We have one man who is a "Niall" match.
More information on this can be found at; www.familytreedna.com/public/R1b1c7/

Kit# N47168
William F Whalen, b 1888 Scranton, PA

Kit# A00010 Tested at Ancestry
Thomas Whelan, b 1832 Co Limerick Ireland, marr Catherine Boyle
Michael J Whelan, b 1869 Ottumwa Iowa, marr Margaret Reardon

Kit# N16485
Phelan, Co Waterford Ireland

R1b Group 10 (R-L21>DF13>Z253>L226 - Irish/Type III - Dalcassian)
This group comprise men who match a R1b "cluster" associated with Co Clare, Limerick and Tipperary and Dalcassian surnames.
More information on this cluster can be found at; irishtype3dna.org/
This cluster is associated witht he SNP L226, which is downstream of Z253.

Kit# N20308
Whalen - No information provided.

Kit# 310239
William James Phelan, b1848, possibly Co Limerick or Cork.

R1b Group 11 (R-L21>DF13>CTS4466 - South Irish/Type II)
This group comprises men who match a R1b "cluster" associated with Southern Ireland and has one member, A00005.
More information can be seen at; mysite.verizon.net/timdesmond/files/dna_southirish.htm

It is associated with the SNP CTS4466

Kit# A00005 Tested at Ancestry
James Whalon, b Ireland
Thomas Whalon, b 1850 NY, m Catherine Quinn.
Henry John Whalon, b 1873 Louis Co. NY, m Olive Anna Edwards.
Robert Emmit Whalon, b 1903 Volney NY, m Bessie Edith Osborn.

Kit# 295333
John Patrick Whelan b 1829 Co Clare Ireland

R1b - various
11 men waiting on matches. We have not found a group or cluster for these men as yet.

Kit# 83614
Nicholas Whelan, born bet 1785-1805, Ireland, marr Margaret Power
John Whelan, b 1830, Ireland, marr Mary Hall
Michael Henry Whelan, b 1860, North Bergen, Hudson Co, NJ, marr Eliza Fruin

Kit# N40840
Whalen - No information provided.

Kit# N73937
Whelan - No information provided.

Kit# A00011 Tested at Ancestry
Whalen, b abt 1828, Ireland or Alabama.
William Whalen, b 1855, Missouri, marr Martha Coleman
Robert Coleman Whalen, b 1883, Arkansas.

Kit# N99127
Whelan - No information provided

Kit# 150256
John Whalen, b abt 1830, Ireland, marr Mary (Maria) Welsh
Dennis Whalen, b 1855, Ireland, marr Bridget Gleason
John Edward Whalen, b 1885, Auburn New York, marr Louise (Freda) Lees Ulrich

Kit# A00007 Tested at Ancestry
Daniel A Whalen, bc 1857 NY

Kit# A00004 Tested at Ancestry
James Patrick Phelan, b 1865 Slade, Parish Callan Co Kilkenny Ireland.

Kit# 50681
Whalen - No information provided.

Kit# N2326
Patrick Phelan, c1850s, Kill, Co Waterford Ireland

Kit# 295333
Michal (Michael) Whelan, b Ireland
John Patrick Whelan (Whalen), b 1829, Co. Clare, Ireland, marr Julia Shaughnessy.
Charles W. Whalen, b 1866, St. Joseph, MO, USA, m. Rose McKenna
John Raymond Whalen Sr, b 1896, St. Joseph, MO, USA, marr Icea N. Duncan"



Vickie Whitty
05-16-2014, 02:24 PM
Hello Mike and thank you for your quick reply! My father passed away, but I have a brother and four nephews residing in Ohio. The crest or coat of arms, that I found was the Muster, I guess I discharged the Dublin Crest due to the spelling, but I need to learn more! I seem to recall that my fathers father has some German back ground.I guess I just need to do more digging! :doh: Well let the journey begin!

06-10-2014, 10:10 AM
whalan from australia reporting in :) mike i may have a fair whack of information if its at all useful regarding whalans in australia. (we actually have a very significant history here and have been here since the mid 1800's)
would be interested in doing a dan test although i have no idea on this haplogroup business etc. if you could pm me regarding it id be happy to do whatever i can to help this project. thanks!


06-10-2014, 02:44 PM
I have been asked about the various tests several times by folks, but I just realized that at thier request, I have always given the answer in a PM
For those Whalen/Phelans that are interested in the surname project and are new to dna testing, I am going to copy some of my response to Zach here as the info is non specific and others might benifit...

Hi 'X'
there are 2 kinds of dna tests that you can get, each focuses on a different sort of thing

-for genealogical purposes, to connect/find with genuine blood related people, the Y STR tests are best. They test a number of dna markers that are useful for this sort of thing, we recommend getting at least 67 STR's tested. We also recommend FTdna for the testing as it has the largest data base by far to compare your results to. https://www.familytreedna.com/ right now, its 268 bucks, if you order it through the project, you get a small discount There are other companies that do this test, but I am not very familiar with them
-All the 88 men in the project have an STR test and once we got your results, we would be able to tell if your male dna line fit in any of our 16 groups. Close matches would prove a genuine level of kinship that was probably as recent as the last 200-300 yrs, even if you had no pen and paper trail-for several of our project members, this has been invaluable and has literally gotten them through their 'pen and paper stonewall'

The other kind of test is an SNP test (up to 3 types of snp, Y-father, Mtdna-mother and autosomal-all ancestors)and recently, new technology has rapidly led to a huge (but 'cutting edge' confusing) number of y line SNP's. Its the SNPs that define the specific haplogroups and points to kinship and 'tribal' origins and/or migration routes that are thousands of years old. There are several companies out there that offer these tests, some quite expensive but they have huge number to SNPs tested-from several hundred thousand snps to a couple of million.
I like the test National Geographic does on this, its a couple of hundred $, and gives you y line, mtdna and autosomal dna results and adds to NG's big project. There are other good ones but you would have to search around for info on them as I am not that familiar with them

I and my co admin Francis (who has had her brother donate the dna for testing) have had both kinds of testing over the years, as each type gives fascinating info...but for the Whalen/Phelan project, you would need to get the Y STR tests
-Francis is more familiar with the discount process, so talking to her would be a good idea

anyway, hope this helps, hope you decide to get tested...I am still looking for a whalen match, sometimes its immediate results, some times its a loooong wait for some long lost cousin to choose to get tested and get put in the data base

Best wishes....Mike

10-30-2014, 05:55 PM

Thanks Admins and Mods!

The Whalen/Phelan DNA Surname Project sub forum lives

our own little home away from home...a place for history, dna questions, project news and any other dang thing you think might be of interest to us Whalen/Phalen/Wheelen/Wheelahan and various assorted other surnames!

best wishes all

Mike and Francis
Co admins

10-30-2014, 06:07 PM
This is the first bit of land my Whealens owned in Canada as far as I can prove. It was in the newly opened up Bruce County in western Ontario and my family and its kin moved there from the Ottawa area, some 700K, through mostly bush. It was a 50+ person oxen wagon train in 1853, with few roads and according to a contemporary letter I have, "lost 1 female, to animals or Indians".

The map is an 1880's survay map I found from one of the Canadian on line Universities and the plots of land are identified in various gov document I have-The Collins were key relatives, his father in law, ect.

My Patrick Whealen started off poor, and ended up with 2 100 acre farms and 13 kids


10-30-2014, 07:38 PM
While doing a family history, you run into all sorts of odd but cool things...while researching the origins of the name Whalen, I first found reference to the myths surrounding its origins.
'Faolain' ('son of the wolf' or 'littlewolf'), stems from 'Fiacha Suidhe', the brother of High King 'Conn of the hundred battles', circa 200AD
-The experts say that that is the period when the myths are starting to actually reflect somewhat accurate history in the ancient Irish Saga's.
What is not of doubt is the Faolain were kings and chieftains of the powerful Desi tribe and there are several historical strongholds for them over the centuries

One of the earliest was 'Dun Faolain', which was mentioned in the histories, and after some 'fine tooth combing', I ended up finding the damn thing, right in the middle of an elite golf course of all things!
I managed to make a jpeg out of the golf courses on line brochur, and here it is, with my note on the top

Of course there is zero connection between the Fort and my actual family line, but I got a kick out of the Dun Faolain archiological ruins, quite well preserved, over looking the 16th hole on this prized golf course!



04-08-2016, 08:33 PM
I dont think I have posted this before, if I have appologies

anyway, I ran across a post I did on FB a few years ago and thought some might like it...I was bored one day and did my own little meme regarding my historical Faolain ancestors in Munster Province almost a thousand years ago...apparently, a true story that I could not resist...

"more of a lark than anything, but a Faolain (Whalen/Phelan) researcher found documents denoting a rather nasty fight between the Pope in Rome and local Irish churchmen around 1212 AD-evidently my namesakes in southern Ireland sided with the Irish and assassinated the problem Roman Biship-they got denounced by the Pope as evil 'Satan's Satellites'...



04-08-2016, 10:08 PM
My Wheeldon looks similar to your Whelan. In my case, the origin is mysterious. But it looks like it was in place in the Wilmington, Delaware area since early colonial times. Although it could be Quaker or other non-conformist, that line joined to colonial Swedes before moving west to Indiana via Kentucky. Whealdon is a possible precursor. And I saw a Wheldon in Maryland, I think it was, that could be related. But I haven't tried to keep track of all that.

Tom Phelan
06-22-2016, 07:57 PM
Hi Mike,

I found your discussion of three separate Whalen/Phelan groups as quite helpful. I can trace my paternal lineage to my gr-gr-gr-grandfather Thomas Phelan, who emigrated from Ireland to Bermuda about 1788. Our family tradition was that we had come from North Ireland (Ulster). Through Y-DNA testing with Family Tree DNA to better understand my ancestry, I discovered myself unique as R-BY471 from the other Whalens/Phelans, and have been included in the R-M222 and subclades research, possibly representing an ancient connection through a chieftain with the Doherty clan of Ulster. There are a small group of families named Phelim in Ulster that could also represent the same line. While of course my genetic history may demonstrate adoption or name change, it appears probable that our family represents the third group of Whalen/Phelan ancestors you mention above. I would appreciate permission to share some excerpts of what you have posted about this third Ulster group in my FTDNA discussions. Thank you.

06-22-2016, 11:44 PM
Hi Tom, welcome to the forum and the great game of dna genealogy!

I am glad you found some of my tidbits useful and you can use what you like...just note that none of the info is original scholarship on my part, just a collection of data I found while roaming the net

anyway, good luck, nice hearing from you and keep us up to date with any useful tidbit of your own

best regards


Tom Phelan
06-23-2016, 05:12 PM
Thank you Mike,

When designated as a "Niall of the Nine Hostages" descendant by FTDNA, it proved unusual. I am not aware of any other Whalens/Phelans so designated. are you aware of any?

Thanks again for your help.

Tom Phelan

06-23-2016, 06:23 PM
Hey Tom
just time for a quick note
Have you checked out the whalen/phalen page at family tree dna?

we have a bunch of M222 guys, in several distinct groups

Francis has you in one called r-8 with another guy...his terminal is different from you but I guess you have a similar signature...258368 is his kit number and R-A260 was his terminal

I dont know much about those new terminals or what their relationship is, but if you have not checked it out, it might be of interest


06-25-2016, 04:50 AM
Thank you Mike,

When designated as a "Niall of the Nine Hostages" descendant by FTDNA, it proved unusual. I am not aware of any other Whalens/Phelans so designated. are you aware of any?

Thanks again for your help.

Tom Phelan

Hi Tom,
We have 14 men who have the 'Niall' badge on their FTDNA pages.
We have 17 men in the project predicted to be M222 and only 2 confirmed by SNP testing.
If more men tested you might find another BY471.
Unfortunately only the Whelehan groups have matches within the project so far.

See the yDNA Results page;

The O'Faolian Clan has men from nearly all the major Irish haplogroups associated with the South of Ireland aswell as the M222 group.
We will be very interested if you find a link to the Phelim of Ulstrt.

Tom Phelan
06-25-2016, 07:06 PM
Hi Rivergirl (Fr?),

Thank you for the FTDNA statistics, especially the 14 "Niall" men, as that may indicate some relationship. So far in all my matches I have only had one other Phelan noted, and that at the lowest level, probably because that was all he tested for. Having traced my paternal line back to the 1700's, I was quite a student of O'Faolain history (including visiting Ireland) prior to my DNA testing, so it came as a real shock to find myself an exception to the group at large. That taken in stride, though, my mission is now to understand what appears to be an Ulster Phelan heritage. As stated above, Kit 258368 is the only other M222 in the Project of whom I was aware, and R-A260 is some genetic distance from BY471. Hopefully some of those at M269 will test out for M222 inclusion. At this time the FTDNA R-M222 & Subclades Project and the Doherty Project appear the most fruitful platforms for BY471 research. One must be patient, though.

Thanks again,

Tom Phelan

07-07-2016, 07:28 AM
So my maternal great-great grandmother's last name is Whelan, I didn't realize there were many other people out there with this last name!

07-07-2016, 11:10 AM
Hi Pachreik
I guess its all about where you live, in my neck of the woods, there are several other Whalen's (but spelled differently) and not one is even remotely related to my line...so I grew up thinking that Whelan was a fairly common Irish name

Once I started doing genealogical research, I was surprised to find out that Whalen and all its variations (Whelan, Whealen, Phalen, Wheelehan ect.), is the 49th most common Irish surname-so many long lost cousins :)


10-08-2016, 12:30 AM
well, I got some nice news today from work and thought I would share it with my friends here on Anthrogenica...not sure I should and even less sure what sub forum would be appropriate, so I picked this one for obvious reasons.

As some know, I am a sworn Peace Officer working for the Ontario Ministry of Public Safety and Corrections...I have worked in Corrections for 27 yrs.

Today I got told I was being awarded the Corrections Exemplary Service Medal

-this is a Federal Gov. medal issued through our Governor General's Office.
"It is, within the Canadian system of honors, the second highest of the exemplary service medals."

Not too many get this, so I guess there are some advantages to being an old war horse that survived all the battles over the years.

Anyway, the ceremony does not happen till late Nov. and as its out of town, I might not be able to go
here are a couple of links



I think I shall pull out my best Irish Whiskey I've got hidden away to celebrate


10-08-2016, 02:13 AM
Congratulations Mike.

10-08-2016, 03:32 AM
well, I got some nice news today from work and thought I would share it with my friends here on Anthrogenica...not sure I should and even less sure what sub forum would be appropriate, so I picked this one for obvious reasons.

As some know, I am a sworn Peace Officer working for the Ontario Ministry of Public Safety and Corrections...I have worked in Corrections for 27 yrs.

Today I got told I was being awarded the Corrections Exemplary Service Medal

-this is a Federal Gov. medal issued through our Governor General's Office.
"It is, within the Canadian system of honors, the second highest of the exemplary service medals."

Not too many get this, so I guess there are some advantages to being an old war horse that survived all the battles over the years.

Anyway, the ceremony does not happen till late Nov. and as its out of town, I might not be able to go
here are a couple of links



I think I shall pull out my best Irish Whiskey I've got hidden away to celebrate


Wow! Awesome! Proud of you, mate! :beerchug::beerchug:

Gray Fox
10-08-2016, 06:46 AM
Congratulations! Keep up the great work! Cheers :beerchug:

Tom Phelan
01-17-2017, 01:59 AM
Yes, congratulations Mike! It is a great honor!

Tom Phelan
FTDNA Kit B-35728/R-A11231

Tom Phelan
01-17-2017, 02:01 AM
Here's a bit of information for those who may trace their surname to northern Irish roots:

I recently ran into the interesting article "O'Phelans from Ulster Province" on LyfeMedia.com concerning the Sept Ó Fialáin of Northern Ireland. It seems likely the Ó Fialáin are of separate lineage from the Ó Faoláin Sept of Southern Ireland (or as the author puts it: "Chances are you're part of an Irish Gaelic Sept unrelated to the O'Phelans of the Decies"). While the southern Faolain is a diminuative form of "wolf," the northern Fialain is a dinuative of "generous" (noble, hospitable). Many noble families of Ulster traditionally descended from the High King Niall of the Nine Hostages, which would be in agreement with those of us Phelans who have been identified by the "Niall" badge. It seems the O'Fialains were considered members of the aristocratic class of Filid (singular Fili) who were professional hereditary poets of ancient Ireland whose official duties were to know and preserve the tales and genealogies and to compose poems recalling the past and present glory of the ruling class, welcomed travelling between royal courts providing entertainment, historical information and the latest news.
The author mentions a townland named Bofealon (in Irish Both Fialáin, meaning "Fialain's Hut") in Templeport Parish west County Cavan. In addition I have received information regarding the Bhotha Mhuintir Uí Fhialáin (Huts of the People of the O'Fialain), an ancient Irish tribe that lived in the area now known as Boho, southwest of Enniskillen in County Fermanagh. An old Irish folk tale speaks of St Faber, who it is said in the 6th century A.D. placed a curse on the cheiftain Baron O'Fialain's castle in Boho, causing it to sink into the ground.
Some history from the Annals of Ulster (of Loch Ce, and of the Kingdom of Ireland by the Four Masters) includes Clann O Fialáin and Clann Mhe Garacháin named as church termoners over Botha Ui Fhialáin in the 13th century. In the 14th century, the poet Adhamh (Adam) O'Fialain died (1365), Paul O'Fialain died (1377), and John O'Fialain, ollam in poetry died (1378). In the 15th century, Gilla-Tigernaigh O'Fialain died (1426), the learned poet Eoghan (Owen) O'Fialain died of a great plague in Feara-Manach (1431), Gillapatrick Oge O'Fialain, poet died (1451), Cuconnaught O'Fialain died (1452), Gilla Patraig (Patraic), son of Aedh Ua Fialain, "to wit, an obliging, pleasant, gifted man" died (1458), Barrdubh, daughter of Eoghan O'Fialain, wife of O'Breslan died (1478), the Gaelic Irish poet Cu Chonnacht O'Fialain died (1480), and John O'Fialain (Ui Fialain), "the Ollam in poetry" of the sons of Philip Mag Uidhir (McGuire) and herenaugh of Botha died (1483). William O'Fialain son of Gilla Patraig (Patraic) died (1484), and Eoghan Og O'Fialain, son of Eoghan O'Fialain died (1489). In 1510 Ferghal (Farrell) O'Fialain, son of Eoghan, a most eminent professor of poetry died, and in 1527 it was recorded that "Tadhg, son of Eogan O'Fialain, one likely to be a good poet, died this year." During the reign of King James I of England in 1609–1610, the land was divided amongst the septs, the head of which was a herenagh who paid tribute to the bishop of Clogher. "O'Fellan" was named the herenagh in Boho. In 1612, a large termon of land was granted by Ó Flanagan to "O’Felan of Bow" who was the chronologer for The Maguire. The anglicisation of the surname O'Fialain probably began in the 17th century, the first recorded spelling of the surname "Phelan" dated circa 1685.

04-12-2018, 01:38 AM
Thank you! New participant here, my Dad is a Whalen, but we dont know yet where in Ireland his paternal line came from. I did a dna test through Ancestry, and hope to have my dad do a DNA test, to clarify lineage.

04-27-2018, 02:45 AM
Is ancestry an ok test for the purposes of this lineage study, or is there a better test for this. We dont know where his paternal lineage came from. Jen

04-27-2018, 05:13 AM
Is ancestry an ok test for the purposes of this lineage study, or is there a better test for this. We dont know where his paternal lineage came from. Jen

Hi Jen, we use yDNA test results in the Whalen O'Faolain yDNA Project.
Ancestry.com test for autosomal which is different.

You can order through the Project at FTDNA;

07-09-2018, 10:56 PM
Ok, so here goes. I asked my paternal line, male cousin to take the test, so, am starting with that. I am very excited to possibly figure out where this bunch of ruffians started out.

07-09-2018, 11:20 PM
Ok, one other question. Anything we need to do to link this test to the Whalen/ ofaolain page?

07-12-2018, 02:42 AM
Hi Jen, you can order the yDNA kit through the Whalen Project for a group discount.

Request to join the project, I then approve you and you should be sent a "Join Code" for ordering. you will automatically be in the project.
You can Admin or Co Admin the kit for your cousin. So you get to see the results etc..

I would recommend the 67 or 111 yDNA marker test if you can afford.
Or start with 37 and upgrade later.
The 12 and 25 are not that informative unless you are in a rare group.

Looking forward to having your relative in the group.

07-19-2018, 07:01 PM
Hello, I missed the boat on the discount, but the 37 ydna test is on its way back to the lab. I requested to join the group.