Larkins in Argentina


At the beginning of the 19th century, Spain was the imperial power in Argentina. In this period of the early 1800s, a wave of wars of independence swept Spanish America, led by Simon Bolivar, Bernardo O'Higgins, Jose Artigas and Jose de San Martin. San Martin was the hero of the Argentine War of Independence which was achieved in 1816. Admiral William Brown from Foxford, Co. Mayo, played a prominent role in that war of Independence, being the founder of the Argentine navy. Another Irish man, John Thomond O'Brien from Co. Wicklow, also was prominent in the war of Independence, being adjutant to San Martin. It is said that San Martin asked O'Brien to go back to Ireland for 200 emigrants. Argentina was then a country of vast unclaimed lands. O'Brien spent the 1827/28 period trying to recruit emigrants in Ireland, but without success. However, he met a John Mooney of Streamstown, near Ballymore, Co. Westmeath. This was to be the start of the Irish emigration to Argentina from the Westmeath/Longford/North Offaly area because Mooney went to Argentina in 1828 when O'Brien was returning. In addition to John Mooney, his sister, Mary Bookey (nee Mooney) and her husband, Patrick Bookey, went with O'Brien. They were to achieve rapid success in farming in Argentina and, due to this success, Mooney wrote home to Westmeath for emigrants to come out and help him farm the vast lands they had found. People in Westmeath responded in large numbers, from the 1820s onwards, and right through the 19th century, and even up to 1914, emigrated to Argentina.

Indeed prior to this emigration there were a small number of Irish in Argentina who arrived as part of the abortive British invasions of 1806 and 1807. The first one was commanded by General William Beresford and both expeditions had Irish officers, Duff, Browne, Nugent, Kenny, Donelly and Murray. Some Irish members of both expeditions deserted and settled in Argentina such as Patrick Island, Michael Hines and Peter Campbell.

So one of the most amazing emigrations had started 'travelling in humble carts, drawn by donkeys carrying a whole family with their modest household goods and headed to Cobh, Liverpool and Southampton, looking for the dreamt of Argentinian Pampas.' The journey took many months travelling by sailing ship. It is reckoned that there were around 300 Irish emigrants in Argentina by 1830, enough to see the first Irish Roman Catholic priest, Rev. Patrick Moran, arrive as chaplain to the emigrants in 1829. He was succeeded by Rev. Patrick O'Gorman in 1830. A survey of the male emigrants in 1827 shows the following sources of the new arrivals:

60% from Westmeath/Longford/North Offaly

15% from Wexford

3% from Cork

3% from Clare

19% from the rest of the country

The emigration saw Westmeath providing two thirds of all the emigrants throughout the 19th century. In 1844, a William McCann, during a 2000 mile ride through Argentina, said 'at least three quarters of the emigrants are from Co. Westmeath.'

During the 1830s, there was a continued rise in emigration to Argentina, coming from three sources:

Some Irish had gone to Brazil but, on not receiving a great welcome, crossed into Argentina. Argentina gave them a great welcome as it did to all Irish and other emigrants. Some such as Brown and Mooney became involved in the meat trade, but it was the sheep trade that attracted most of them. Irish and Basque emigrants became the mainstay of the sheep trade, and helped develop a wool based economy. Indeed, a Peter Sheridan from Cavan, who emigrated in the 1820s, became one of the largest sheep farmers in Argentina, and was instrumental in introducing the Merino sheep Which today are to be seen all over Argentina. The Irish achieved great success with sheep, especially because the native gauchos preferred cattle and had no interest in sheep. Labourers earned up to ten shillings a day. A system of halves operated, i.e. the owner of land supplied the land and flock, and the tenant was responsible for all other expenses. In time, many became owners of large estancias (ranches). By 1880, there were 58 million sheep in Argentina.

Fr. Anthony Dominic Fahy

The famine of the 1840s in Ireland boosted emigration to Argentina from Westmeath and Wexford. This movement continued into the 1850s. 1844 saw the appointment of Rev. Antonio Fahy as chaplain. He was a native of Loughrea in County Galway who had spent two years in Ohio in the United States. There he had seen the problems among Irish emigrants in cities, so when he arrived in Argentina, he urged Irish emigrants to avoid the cities and head for the vast countryside. He has been described as the adviser, banker, matchmaker and administrator of a welfare system for the newly arriving emigrants.

Born in 1805 to Patrick and Belinda (nee Cloran) Fahy, Fr. Anthony Dominic Fahy arrived in the South American country in 1843. just before Ireland’s Great Famine. When news reached him of what was happening at home, he organized a fund of £441- 1s- 10d - a very large sum then – to relieve the suffering of the people. He also encouraged their emigration to Argentina to escape the hardships of home and in 1847 opened the Irish Immigrant Infirmary of Buenos Aires. This provided refuge and nursing care to the increasing numbers arriving, many of whom were from County Galway. Forever remembered as a pioneering figure and advocate on behalf of his Irish flock, the Dominican spent many years serving as their Chaplin and indeed matchmaker; with a reported 185 marriages blessed in the five years from 1851 to -1856.  Having played a key role in nurturing and protecting the welfare of the Irish community, whose dependents today play a prominent role in modern Argentine life, his sudden death on 20 February 1871 was a great loss. Today, the Fr. Fahy Club in Buenos Aires plays a key role in the lives of the current Irish-Argentine Community. Three Irish-Argentine community organisations now cater for the largest group of Irish descent outside English-speaking countries.

The records of the port of Buenos Aires for 1849 show 708 emigrants arriving from Ireland. Church building became part of the Irish scene around this period, with new churches built in Buenos Aires, Barracas, Coronel Brandsen, Carmen de Areco, Rojas, Arrecifes, Mercedes and Venado Tuerto.


Memorial to Fr. Fahy at Loughrea Cathedral, County Galway.


última modificación: 28.01.2004

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Ricardo Daniel Larken Williams <>


James Larkin. Nació en 1840 en Co.Westmeath. Hijo de Michael Larkin. Censado en 1895 en el Partido de Exaltación de la Cruz, PBsAs. Falleció el 23.7.1902 en Capilla del Señor, PBsAs. Casado en matrimonio con Catherine Pierce, nacida en 1844 en Irlanda, la que murió el 2.10.1928 en CBsAs. Padres de:




Mary Larkin y Pierce. Nació en 1869 en Irlanda.


Brígida Larkin y Pierce. Nació en 1879 en la Argentina. Falleció el 31.12.1949. Casada en matrimonio con Santiago Ward y Scally, hijo de Patrick Ward y de María Scally.


Teresa Larkin y Pierce. Nació en 1881. Falleció el 8.8.1962.


Elisa Larkin y Pierce. Nació en 1885.


Guillermo Francisco Larkin y Pierce. Nació en 1889. Falleció en mayo de 1956 en el Partido de Saavedra, PBsAs. Casado en matrimonio con Margarita Connor y Cevers, hija de Patrick O'Connor y de Ellen Cevers. Padres de:


Charles Larkin y Connor.


Susana Larkin y Connor. Casada en matrimonio con Victorio Rodríguez. Padres de:


Jorge Victorio Rodríguez y Larkin.


Carlos Rodríguez y Larkin.



Ricardo Guillermo Larkin y Connor. Nació el 22.12.1909 en CBsAs, donde falleció el 5.1.1988. Casado en matrimonio el 2.3.1940 en la Parroquia de la Santísima Trinidad, CBsAs, con Juana Williams Oliver, nacida el 24.6.1906 en CBsAs, donde falleciera el 28.3.1996. Padres de:


Ricardo Daniel Larken y Williams. Nació el 22.11.1940 en CBsAs. Ordenado sacerdote el 7.12.1968 en la Iglesia del Seminario de Villa Devoto, CBsAs. Actualmente Cura Párroco de Nuestra Señora del Carmen, CBsAs.


María Inés Larkin y Williams. Nació el 5.6.1944. Casada en matrimonio el 3.12.1971 en Parroquia Inmaculada Concepción de Belgrano, CBsAs, con Julio Esteban Raverot. Padres de:

Esteban Eduardo Raverot y Larkin. Nació el 21.10.1972.

Natalia Inés Raverot y Larkin. Nació el 16.1.1976.




“Nenegrande” Larkin y Connor.


Santiago Larkin y Connor. Falleció en enero de 2000 en Vicente López, PBsAs. Casado en matrimonio con Ernestina ____.


Teresa Larkin y Connor. Casada en matrimonio con Alfredo Paradisso. Padres de:


Alicia Paradisso y Larkin. Vive en Zárate, PBsAs.


Oscar Paradisso y Larkin.




Santiago Larkin y Pierce. Falleció el 25.5.1949 en CBsAs. Casado. Con descendencia.


Miguel Larkin y Pierce. Nació en 1868. Falleció el 19.4.1955 en el Partido de Saavedra, PBsAs.

última modificación: 18.11.2003

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<>, para incluirlo como referente

Michael Larkin. Nació en 1847 en Irlanda. Censado en 1895 en el Partido de Campana, PBsAs. Casado en matrimonio con Catherine R___, nacida en 1860 en Irlanda. Padres de:


María Larkin. Nació en 1880.


Patricio Larkin. Nació en 1882.


Elena Larkin. Nació en 1884.


Margarita Larkin. Nació en 1885.


Ana Larkin. Nació en 1886.


Miguel Larkin. Nació en 1890.


 To the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform Mr. John O’Donoghue, T.D.
We, the undersigned, citizens of the Argentine Republic and their supporters, draw the attention of the Government of Ireland to the following issue: Whereas Irish men and women emigrated from Ireland to the River Plate (currently, Argentina and Uruguay), particularly during the nineteenth century at a time when economic and social conditions in Ireland encouraged emigration and Argentina offered opportunities for a better life; Whereas the economic and social situation in Argentina does not allow the descendants of those emigrants and their families to wholly fulfil the dreams of their forefathers regarding the access to basic levels of security, health and education; Whereas members of the Irish-Argentine community, most of whom are greatgrand children of Irish emigrants, would like to have the opportunity to live and work in Ireland, just as Argentina offered the same opportunities to Irish people in the past; Whereas under the terms and provisions of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Acts of 1956 and 1986, those members of the Irish-Argentine community could not obtain the Irish citizenship and could not in this way live legally in Ireland;
Therefore, your petitioners request that the Minister of Justice, Equality and Law Reform allow Argentine-born great-grand children of Irish nationals to become Irish nationals themselves or in the alternative to be able to seek and obtain employment in Ireland as if they were Irish nationals. Yours sincerely.

Copyright © 2008 Pádraic Ó Lorcáin. All rights reserved.
Revised: 28 Jan 2009 10:45:24.

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