The family of Michael Padden [MICHEAL Mac PAIDIN] b 1790 Killala Co Mayo IR, d 1869 Vancouver Clarke Co WT, the son of Dominick Padden [Doiminic Mac Paidin] and Bridget Dougherty [Brigid Ni Dochartaigh].
The PADDENS originated in County Mayo as a branch of the BARRETT family, who had come into Ireland with Strongbow in the time of King Henry II (1154-1189), and who had speedily become more Irish than the Irish, founding a Sept on the Irish model, and taking the Gaelic name Mac PAIDIN according to the Irish fashion. Their name BARRETT, represented in Irish by the form BAREID, has helped to distinguish our family from the McFaddens of Ulster and Scotland. Dominating a large part of County Mayo, where they were acknowledged as Lords of Tirawley, the Mac PAIDINS possessed lands about Killala Bay, site of the famous Dominican Priory of which they were patrons, and Killala is the home remembered by the family, across the years and across the seas. They say that some of them had taken the Cross, and were in the Holy Land with Richard Coeur de Lion. Their last great leader was RICHARD Mac PADINE, Chief of the Name, who was deprived of all his 400 year old rights, styles and titles by Queen Elizabeth in 1585, and compelled besides to renounce them for his heirs and assigns forever.
Unmerciful disaster followed fast. The O Neill and the O Donnell were forced out of Ireland in 1610, forfeiting Ulster to King James and his planters. The PADDENS were ruined by their support of King Charles, and altogether destroyed in the Williamite War, which ended with the deafeat of their Catholic King.
But in the middle of the Eighteenth Century our branch of the PADDEN family was still located in Killala. The ancient little city in its rolling countryside, seat of a bishopric dating back to S. Patrick himself (432}, was a center of the coastwise trade with Spain through the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, so that the PADDENS had many Spanish contacts. Some are known to have been at the Irish College at Salamanca, and indeed there were some of them in the Irish Brigades of the Spanish Army after the King fled Ireland in 1691. And indeed they fought for American Independence with our Spanish Ally. They called themselves "Castillian Irish" and they were all proud of their black hair.
When she met William Butler Yeats, who was in the United States in the 1920's, Mrs T. W. Padden (1854-1938) asked him if there were any Paddens still in Killala. He told her, indeed yes, and they are all proud of their black hair.
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