Saturday, January 27, 2007

NORSE SURNAME, Memorial. Scharfe, Scarf, Scharf, Scarff, Scariff. Bawnree, Ridge, Old Leighlin & Coolcullen

"Erected by the Scarf/ Scharf/ Scarff/ Scariff Family
In Memory of their ancestors 
from Bawnree (Baunreigh), Ridge, Old Leighlin and Coolcullen"
Scharfe Family memorial. Baunreigh, Bawnree, Ridge, Old Leighlin, Coolcullen. Tracing back.  Red Scariff in 1525.  Red hair?  Where did that go in the SkarfR, Scharf gene pool.

We learned of a Memorial with a long list of us.  Memorials are handy because they put in one place a line of people and places, and dates. Spelling variations from the originating country, say, Norse ; to Gaelic to English and back, and merged words, make locations difficult.

We learned from someone from the ultimately Australian branch of Skarf / Skarfr (Old Norse - includes SkarfR) that there is a memorial in Old Leighlin (a/k/a in Griffiths Records, Oldleighlin).  Turn to the magic online maps.
  • Old Leighlin is in County Carlow, northwest from Kilkenny. 
  • Bawnree * - we could not find it in google.  It was not likely to be Bawnreigh over in County Limerick, so we turned to Griffiths: a Baunreigh and Ridge turn out to be owned by Beauchamp Scarffe in that "Oldleighlin". Baunreigh means a mountain - more like a turfy knoll, comments an anonymous madfrankie somebody, there is Baunreighcong, with a large stone cairn, on the hiking route known as the Slieve Bloom Way. See ://  Looking ahead at the memorial and lines from it, Beauchamp lived 1802-1886. 
  • Coolcullen is also northwest of Kilkenny, but still within County Kilkenny.  .

Vikings on the Move. Red Scariff's gene pool.The photocopy of the memorial information is too faded to scan in, so here is the listing from it. 

Start here:
I.  Red Scariff 1525-ca 1575

Cormac Scarfthe 1580-1640
Ainmire Scarfh 1600-ca 1660
Eoghan Scarfh 1640-ca 1700
Eoghan Scarfe 1670-1750
Padraig Scarff 1700-1760
Beircheart Scarf 1710-1780

Then there are two lines:

II. THOMAS SCARF 1760-1835 and wife Mary (Whitaker) 1765-1852

Son - John Scarf 1780-1850 and wife Jane (James) 1785-1880
Their son - Beauchamp Scarf 1802--1886 and wife Julie (Rice) 1804-1888

Their children:

Patrick Scarf 1831-?
Anne (Scarf) Tobin 1812-1914
William Scarf 1815-1910 and wife Mary Power 1811-1906
Daniel Scarfe 1816-?
Enoch Scarff 1841-1907 and wife Mary Tobin 1846-1895
Maria (Scarf) Perkins 1850-1878
Bridget Scarf 1850-?
Deborah Scarf 1856-?
Julia Scarf 1857-1870
James Scarf 1857-1857
James Francis Scarf 1862-1886

III. JAMES SCHARF 1764-1832 and wife Anne (Bradley) 1750-1843*

Their children:
Thomas Scharf 1785-1846 and wife Dorothy (Reynard) 1778-1872
Eliza Scarf  1786-?
James Scharf  1788-1835
Rachael Scharf 1790-? & husband Robert Fennell 1787-1829
William Scarf 1795-? and wife Catherine (Whelan) 1795-1822
John Scharf 1798-1860 and wife Elizabeth (Booth) 1808-1883
Enoch Scharf 1799-1879 and wife Catherine (Brennan)  1787-1864
Jacob Scharf 1800-? and wife Catherine (Brennan) 1810-? (different from Enoch's?)
Joseph Scharf  1801 and wife Catherine (Saunders) 1801-1879
Beauchamp Scharf 1804-1862 and wife Maryanne Saunders 1802-1833
 .... and wife Mary Ann (Conley) 181801850
 .... and wife Frances (Dawson) 1832-1903

Sometime search for Scarf or a variation and iron foundries, and many come up.

Many spelling changes are arbitrary.   The "e" was added by grandfather Adam in Ottawa ** to the Scharf spelling to ease the plight of the postmaster with all the families and farms all in the same area. The graves at Hazeldean Cemetery show dozens of people with the name, either way.  The farm where my father grew up - farmhouse burned in the 1930's, farm and other farms around still undeveloped - rural but right there in Ottawa city limits, we understand.

Ancestors, real and imagined.
  • Otkell, son of Skarf. See this Icelandic Saga (written in 11th Century, but preceding in oral tradition) at ://  This amateur researching business has its hazards. 
 "Otkell, son of Skarf, son of Hallkell, who fought with Gorm of Gormness in Iceland and felled him on the holm,"  from the Icelandic Saga, The Story of Burnt Njal at chapter 47, Icelandic Saga Database, at // 
With this gene pool, how did we become so pacifist? Skarf was brave, but his son Otkell was selfish and greedy. Must be some mistake. Otkell belongs to somebody else.

We are still sorting out what is there and what is pending. Is there is a memorial to Red Scariff and his progeny near Kilkenny, is it?
  • We received a copy of a Scarf Crest and Celtic cross from this memorial apparently for these fellow Scharfs located somewhere in the towns listed.

* Bawnree, Old Leighlin: In County Carlow, see Baurnreagh spelling.  Southeast. Near Kilkenny. See also ://

Chains of information:  see
  • ://; and 
  • ://  This one suggests a Norman connection - fits with the Scandinavian - Norse roots, since the Norse settled in Normandy, then invaded England - this site also suggests the name came with someone in the Norman invasion of Strongbow during the English occupation.  It adds another spelling - Scarfthe as in Cormac Scarfthe 1580.
  • For those of us with overstrung imaginations of past slayings bringing honor to the , read about Otkell, son of Skarf, son of Hallkell, in the Story of Burnt Njall, at Chapter 47, from the 1861 "Life In Iceland at the End of the Tenth Century, from the Icelandic of the Njal's Saga, this book by George Webbe Dasent. This Icelandic Saga is found in a google book now at (cut and past in the big address bar up top) ://

Do scroll up past the Title page to see the depiction of the Icelandic skall or hall, a kind of long house, and keep scrolling up to see the coat of arms, and the motto on a shield:


The heraldry shows a battle axe, a sword, and what looks like a pin, a brooch fastener for perhaps any kind of cloak? one with an apparent thistle - Scots? - Battle axes are frequent symbols for those founding this or that.  See St. Stephen's, in Austria, near Rohrbach, at Austria Road Ways, Aigen, near Rohrbach>

Note that Otkell is hardly a noble character.


**  Grandfather Adam Scharfe for us, in Ottawa, from the line of  James and Anne Scharf, added the "e in the early 1900's, solely to help the postal service  in delivering to the right farm. This will be of no interest to anyone but others of this ilk. They are mostly in Hazeldean Cemetery, Ottawa, an area still with rural patches, including the farm land - still undeveloped.

Adam Scharf, changed name to Scharfe
Born Hazeldean, Ontario, Canada 3/30/1860
Died Cyrville, Ont. Canada, 6/18/1930
Married Violet _____ Scharfe (birth and death dates unk so far)

Child of Adam and Violet:  Lillian, born 7/8/1888

Adam married Theressa Black, born 12/25/1865
Died Ottawa, Ont. Canada 3/31/1945
Children (all deceased) James Albert born 11/25/1893
Married Margaret Johnson
William Nixon born 7/21/1895, died Vancouver BC 12/20/1942
Married Alice Simpson
Gertrude born 6/19/1897, died ____
Married Alec Horner
Thomas Hector born July 2, 1899, died California 8/24/1956
Married Mary Bivins
Violet Jane born 12/12/1900, died _________
Married Leonard Wilson
Hilda Beatrice born 2/7/1903, died _____
Adam Cecil born 3/12/1905
Howard Carman born 9/12/1907, died Pittsburgh PA March 7, 1971

Everyone's children and children's children are on a separate private post - all the above is public record elsewhere.
Contact me if you want to know more and I will ask them each if they want information out.