John Burke Emily’s paternal grandfather was born about 1776, possibly in the Kinvara area of Co. Galway. When his son William John was born in 1805, he held land there, which extended to the surrounding areas and employed farm labourers.
John Burke and his wife had at least three children, Patrick, William John and a daughter. From the scant records left from the time, the Burkes seemed to be well respected pillars of the community. In 1820 John Burke was a witness to a lease agreement between landowners and the Catholic Church in Kinvara. He would later contribute to towards the building of St, Colman’s Church, where unknown to him at the time, his son William John would become the administrator of the same church many years later.