Saturday, 1 September 2012

Lawrence Ormond Butler - Introduction

Lawrence Ormond Butler was born in Sydney in 1812 to convicts Laurence Butler and Ann Roberts. Classed as 'currency' children, Lawrence and his siblings would lead extraordinary lives in the developing nation of Australia. This blog explores his life.

LAWRENCE ORMOND BUTLER  was born July 20, 1812 in Pitt Street Sydney, NSW, Australia [1], and died December 24, 1856 in Macquarie St, Surrey Hills, Sydney [2]. He was the son of LAURENCE BUTLER (1750-1820), cabinet-maker from Wexford Ireland (convict on 'Atlas 2' 1802, convicted for role in 1798 Irish Rebellion, life sentence, CP) and ANN ROBERTS (1777-1824) from Worcestershire England (convict on 'Speke' 1808, convicted of larceny, 7 yr). 
He married (1) CATHERINE GORMAN October 22, 1833 in Presbyterian Church, Sydney, NSW [3].  She was born 1816 in Parramatta, and died December 6, 1838[4]. She was the daughter of THOMAS GORMAN (1776-1849), wheelwright from Trim, Ireland (convict on ‘Rolla’ 1803, convicted Dublin of robbery, life sentence, CP) and CATHERINE McLAUGHLIN (1783-1838 ) (convict on ‘Tellicherry’ 1803). 
He married (2) AGNES MCPHERSON Dec 31 1839 [5] in Melbourne Victoria. She came free on the 'Caledonia' in 1839. Died unknown. 
He married ? (3) FRANCES RAINY Abt. 1846 in either Sydney, NSW or Melbourne Victoria [6]. She was born 1822 London,[7] and died 1885 Sydney NSW.[8] She was the daughter of GEORGE RAINY, dealer, and ANN PITMAN. They came free in c.1834. 


Lawrence, (also spelt Laurence) was born in July 1812, lost his father at the age of eight, and was orphaned by the age of twelve. 

Rev. Samuel Marsden's original Record of Baptisms 
( NSW Miscellaneous BDM records) 

Lawrence Ormond Butler Junior was a very interesting character. He appeared to have an 'Irish temper', a determined nature, and a disregard for authority, probably due to having lost parental authority at a very young age.

He was born in Sydney to convicts Laurence Butler and Ann Roberts. Laurence Senior (1750-1820), from Ferns in County Wexford, was given a life sentence for his role as a rebel captain in the 1798 Irish Rebellion. Arriving in October 1802 on the ‘Atlas 2’, he became one of Sydney’s successful businessmen and is recognized as Australia’s first cabinet maker of note. By 1809, Laurence Butler had set up his business at No. 7 Pitt Street. This is the address at which his children were born and grew up. By 1811, Laurence Senior was living with Ann Roberts, (1767-1824) convicted of larceny in Worcestershire and transported for seven years in 1808 on the ‘Speke’.

Although living together by 1811, Laurence Butler was not able to marry Ann Roberts until the death of his wife Catherine in Wexford Ireland. On receiving the information of Catherine’s death, Laurence immediately applied for a licence and they married in St Phillip’s Anglican Church on the same day as their daughter Mary Ann’s baptism on 1 July 1817, one month after her birth. It is unknown whether Lawrence was baptised with the second name 'Ormond', or whether he gave himself the name, realising the importance of its origin. He first began using it in the 1830's. Maybe their father Laurence Senior told his children of the significance and importance of the name in their heritage. Notably all three of Laurence Butler Senior's children named one of their children by the name of 'Ormond'. All of Lawrence Junior's eldest son's descendants for at least three generations gave their children the middle name of Ormond including the female children. Some of Lawrence's brother Walter's children told their family they were descendants of the 'Kilkenny' Butlers, viz. descendants of the Earls of Ormond. As there is a strong likelihood that Laurence Butler Senior was a descendant of Richard 1st Viscount Mountgarrett the second son of the 8th Earl of Ormond, whose descendants lived in the area of Wexford where Laurence was living, the supposition could have some basis of truth.

Child of Laurence Butler and Mary Ann Fowles
1. Walter Butler, b.c. 1807.

Children of Laurence Butler and Ann Roberts:

1.Lawrence (Ormond) Butler Junior, born July 20, 1812, 

2.Mary Ann, born June 1, 1817.

3.George Patrick born March 15, 1815, died November 2, 1819

4.Elizabeth born August 10, 1819, died December 7, 1819.

(SRNSW: Archives Resources Kit, Births, Deaths, Marriages Registers 1787-1856; Reel 5002- Lawrence Vol 6/154, Mary Ann V. 7/563, George Patrick/Patrick George V.6/228, Elizabeth V. 8/108, Deaths George Patrick V. 8/139, Elizabeth V. 8/151)

The original St Phillip's Church Sydney by John Wm Lewin 1809

A Y-DNA test (67 STR markers) of a descendant of Lawrence Junior’s son George Henry Ormond and his son Ernest Ormonde Butler matched a descendant of  Walter Butler’s son Francis George Butler, which proves that both Walter and Lawrence Junior were true blood brothers and sons of Laurence Butler Senior. See summary below. For full details of these tests,  see the last chapter of Laurence Butler Senior’s blog- Ch 25.


Laurence Butler Senior died in December 1820 and his wife Ann Roberts died sometime in 1824. Lawrence Junior and his younger sister, Mary Ann, were cared for by their elder brother (viz. half-brother) Walter Butler, then aged just 17, who married in May 1825. Walter stated in his Memorial in 1825 [9] that he supported his orphaned brother and sister, and this is further endorsed by his witness, Father John Joseph Therry. The children had inherited a considerable estate, stated by Walter to be valued at upwards of £2000, including two houses/premises in Pitt Street- No.7 and No.6 Pitt Street- adjacent to Samuel Terry’s house, now Angel Place.

The two houses/premises in Pitt Street owned by the Butler family (Nos. 7 and 6)
Drawn by Joseph Fowles in 1848- Streetscapes of Sydney

They also inherited a house/premises No.32 Kent Street, and 100 acre farm in District of Petersham, now Callan Park Hospital grounds extending down to Brenan Road Lilyfield, so they were comfortably situated financially. Their appointed guardian was the R.C. priest, Father Therry [10]. Close associates of their father Laurence, who were mainly Irish, plus neighbor and trustee John Connell, continued to look after their interests. Despite their support, it is difficult to fathom how three orphaned children with such valuable assets managed to survive in such a cut-throat society. All three children would lead adventurous lives in this newly developing nation, exploring opportunities in Van Diemen's Land and the new settlement of Melbourne. Lawrence would become known for his fractious temperament and inability to settle in one place, leading to all sorts of problems with his employers and the law, and a dubious employment reputation throughout the colony.

Since the age of 16 years working as an apprentice compositor, Lawrence was constantly in the courts fighting charges by his various newspaper employers for absconding from his employment contracts, an indictable offence in those days under the 'Masters and Servants Act' . On each occasion he would spend a few weeks in prison while his solicitors fought for his release which invariably happened. He was arrested and imprisoned in 1828, 1830, 1831, 1832, 1835, 1836, 1837, 1838, 1841 and finally in 1847. His many sojourns in prison did not seem to bother him. He knew how to work the legal system. 

A typical advertisement would say:

The Public are Cautioned against harbouring or in any way employing this Man, he having absconded from this Office before the expiration of his written engagement, as any Person found doing so after this Notice, will most certainly be prosecuted with the utmost rigour of the Law, and as a warrant has been issued for his apprehension a Reward of ONE POUND will be paid to anyone who will lodge him in safe Custody.
Gazette Office

29th June 1836.

During his trial in 1836 The ‘Sydney Gazette’ reported:
Some time ago he thought proper to absent himself from work. He was apprehended in consequence, and upon his being had up before the magistrate, was sentenced to be confined in Gaol for a period of twenty days. At the expiration of this sentence, he refused to return to work, unless his salary were raised to 38 shillings per week. This being refused as contrary to the existing agreement, he again absented himself, and was not taken till Thursday night last.

His lawyer and long-time family friend George R. Nichols argued in Court: 
That the reason why he, the defendant, would not work, was, his having been already punished. And he (Mr Nichol) would submit it to the bench, that having been so punished, he was not bound to go back again. He had not been in service since he was in gaol, and as this was merely the same offence, he could not be punished twice for it. Another point was, that the written agreement was invalid, inasmuch as defendant could take no advantage of it. The Act required that the agreement should have been with some particular person or persons, but there was no tangible party mentioned in this. If he had been harshly dealt with, he would have had no remedy- it contained no mutuality of contract, and as he could not have brought any action upon such agreement, he was not bound by the conditions.
Mr Nichols then said- There was another objection; the Act only applied to menial or house servants. As a compositor’s business was of a mental and a manual nature, he did not come within its meaning. Mr Cavanagh (editor of the ‘Sydney Gazette’) stated that he did not consider a compositor’s business a mental one, they had the copy before them and the putting up the copy was more mechanical than otherwise.

The judge agreed with Cavanagh, and Lawrence was sentenced to a further two months gaol on top of the time he had served. He immediately appealed the sentence on the same grounds, with the result:
 “The Magistrates having consulted for a short time, decided that the conviction was not drawn up with sufficient accuracy, and therefore it must be quashed.”

The last case in 1847, charged with absconding from his employment at the 'Portland Gazette', became a huge issue in the newspapers criticizing the local judicial system. Again Lawrence was found, on appeal, not guilty on grounds that his job as a compositor was classed as a profession not a manual job and therefore the normal rules of employment did not apply. This case would be used as an example of precedence for similar cases in following years.
One journalist wrote a scathing review of the case, in which he said, in part:
On Friday last, a person named Lawrence Ormond Butlers, who had been committed to gaol for three months under the Masters and Servants Act, by the Portland Bench, was brought before his Honor the Resident Judge in chambers, and released from custody, the committal exhibiting even a greater want of knowledge of that sublime science the law, than many commitments emanating from the Melbourne Bench.
Considerable harshness appears to have been exhibited by the Portland Bench towards Butler, who was not only sentenced to three months imprisonment, but was directed to pay costs to the amount of one pound six shillings and sixpence. (P.P. Patriot.)
Here is a rich example of stipendiary talent; a portrait of the doings of the police magistrate of Portland; a gorgeous display of Portland Police efficiency; an exhibition of the rare judicial qualities of our salaried P.M. and an honorary J.P. combined.
 Each day, as it arrives, adds some fresh instance of the utter incompetency of the Portland Bench, under its present lame management, to command the confidence of the inhabitants.
The sentence passed upon the unfortunate man, whom the bench got into their power, was illegal and disgraceful. It was the most vindictive sentence that any bench could pass, with the least colour of the law to commend it. It has met its equitable reward, the shame, and scandal of the bench by which it was ___.
What does Mr Blair receive his salary for, if it not to perform the duties of the magistracy creditably to the Government by which he is appointed? Yet here is another scandalous transaction occurring, reflecting disgrace upon the district, upon the whole body of the Port Phillip Magistracy, and most of all upon the Government which appointed and still upholds an incompetent officer.

The Melbourne Argus (Tues 8 June 1847 p.2) reported that:
 Lawrence Ormond Butler, a prisoner confined in the Melbourne Gaol appeared on a writ of Habeas Corpus, to apply for his discharge. His solicitor moved His Honor to order the discharge of the prisoner on the ground of numerous technical informalities in the warrant of commitment.
His Honor granted the application and Butler was discharged accordingly.

Lawrence was also charged on two occasions with minor assault, having lost his temper, the first time, in Sydney in 1831, defending a crippled man who was being bullied, by dealing out a severe beating on the bully with his cane- found not guilty; and the second in Melbourne in 1842 by thumping a court bailiff for which he received a short jail sentence with hard labour. 

Just prior to the second assault case, he was embroiled in a very public dispute with William Kerr the editor of John Fawkner’s Port Phillip Patriot who set about destroying Lawrence’s career and reputation with a vitriolic series of editorials. Lawrence incurred Fawkner and Kerr’s wrath when he switched employment from the Patriot to his former employer George Cavanagh’s Herald, revealing information such as circulation figures of his former workplace to his new employer.
Kerr scathingly wrote:
“-- in the face of your (viz. George Cavanagh) tampering with my late servant LAWRENCE ORMOND BUTLER, (I give the name to the world for information) to obtain a knowledge of the affairs of my office; and mind, I pledge my word that he has given you false! Utterly false! Information. Yes! And you have persuaded the mean wretch to append his name, and have given circulation to his certain damnation among the printers wherever your widely circulating paper may happen to go-- thus sealing your own fame with his.”
(NB- Lawrence’s name was emphasized in capital letters in the newspaper.)

These damning editorials continued over the period of several weeks:
“….the publication of a letter from one of our cast-off servants (a scoundrel named Laurence Ormond Butler), who it seems has been pandering to the baseness of its present employer by attempting to betray secrets of the office he has just left. Fortunately for us he had it not in his power to do more than attempt, for knowing the character of the man from his previous doings in Sydney and at Hobart Town, when we unwillingly received him into the office for a few weeks, as a substitute for our overseer who had been obliged to proceed temporarily to South Australia, we did not admit him so far to our confidence as to entrust him with the issue of the paper, or the control of the press-room, and it was consequently not in his power to do more than guess at our circulation…. The circulation of the “Patriot”, at the time it came under our charge was low- lower even than honest Larry has guessed at.”

“We are not yet done with George Cavanagh Esq. and his infamous tool Laurence Ormond Butler.
We never knew a printer guilty of such cool, deliberate treachery as this of Laurence Ormond Butler.
… Although aware that amongst honest men, there could be no second opinion as to Cavanagh’s baseness and Butler’s turpitude…”

Kerr concludes by saying:
 “there, gentle reader, there, considering the quarter it comes from, is a notable flight of fancy for you. Alas for the cause of truth, honesty and honour!!!—Think of that Larry Butler.”

Shortly after, Lawrence was convicted of slapping the court bailiff and imprisoned yet again. Kerr wrote about George Cavanagh, proprietor of the Herald:
“We shall not feel very much surprised if one day or other our friend of the ‘Herald’ blunders himself into the body of Her Majesty’s jail, where his friend Larry Butler is employed ‘nappin stones’.” (ie- breaking up rocks with a sledgehammer)…
And,  “… that Mr Cavanagh has narrowly escaped ‘getting into trouble’, (as his friend Larry would call it)…”

Lawrence’s sentence was commuted a month later after a petition from his second wife Agnes Macpherson, on grounds of destitution, and testimonials of good character from several influential people.

Lawrence obviously had a fractious temperament and was incapable of staying in one place for long, travelling constantly between the colonies of NSW, Tasmania, Victoria, and South Australia. Not surprising given he lost his father at the tender age of eight years, his mother at age twelve, and raised by his elder brother Walter who was just seventeen when he was forced to shoulder the burden and responsibility of raising his young brother and seven year old sister. Although left financially well off by their father, Lawrence was virtually self-reliant from a very young age and never learnt responsibility. Despite this, he was continually employed, even though his reputation was well known throughout the colony. He worked as a compositor and as head of various printing departments for many of the colony’s major newspapers- Edward Smith Hall’s The Sydney Monitor; The Sydney Gazette under several editors including George Cavanagh; Henry Melville’s The Colonial Times (Hobart) the proprietorship of which was purchased in 1839 by Lawrence’s brother-in-law John C. Macdougall who became publisher-proprietor-editor; John Fawkner’s Port Phillip Patriot; and George Cavanagh’s Port Phillip Herald, amongst others. So he must have been a highly skilled compositor, an occupation that was in short supply in the early years of the colony.

Lawrence Ormond Butler's  five surviving children have spawned many descendants.  

Y-DNA Genealogical Testing 

The newly developing science of genealogical Y-DNA matching will probably gain momentum in the coming years and may play an important role in unraveling these family tree mysteries and help with matching family links. It may also pose new unanswerable genealogical questions as well. DNA can provide information about our ancestor's migratory paths through thousands of years as well as individual descent from one's forefathers. The same DNA markers are handed down from generation to generation for hundreds even thousands of years, with occasional mutations of individual markers in the DNA profile.

DNA is the only genealogical record that is absolute proof of one's true heritage, and combined with the traditional genealogical paper trail, it promises an exciting future in family research. Y-DNA is only present in males and is passed down from father to son, as only the male child inherits the Y chromosome from his father, and this information can reveal information on the patrilineal line and determine one's ancestral roots. DNA also reveals our ancient ancestral roots.

The ancient migratory paths of ancestors out of Africa, tens of thousands of years ago, have been grouped into HAPLO groups. A Haplogroup is defined as a group of similar haplotypes that share a common ancestor; and a haplotype is defined as a group of genes or a set of DNA variations which is inherited together from a single parent.
To understand these different groupings, one would need to read some of the numerous articles on this subject. Suffice to say that the most common Haplo groups for western European ancestry fall into the Haplogroups
 I and R and their subgroups or ‘subclades’.

The largest concentration of those from the I Haplogroup appear in the Scandinavian countries of Denmark, Sweden (particularly Gotland) and Norway, and to a lesser extent in parts of  Finland, and the remainder of western and central Europe are concentrated in the R Haplogroup. As Britain, peopled by the early Celts and Britons, was invaded by Romans, Angles, Saxons, Danes, Vikings and Normans, the majority of those of long British heritage are a mixture of the two Haplogroups, with R1b (and its subclades) the most common, and (including subclade I1) found in greater numbers in the Danelaw settlement areas of Great Britain. The Celtic regions of Wales, Ireland and Scotland have a high percentage of people in the R1b Haplogroup.

          Migratory map out of Africa showing the routes of Haplo group I  (l1, l2b) and R
                                                  (http:// www

One of Laurence Butler's male descendants (from son Walter) has done a Y-DNA test (111 STR markers tested) and his Haplogroup (deep ancestral roots) was determined as belonging to  the   I Haplogroup, I1 subclade, confirmed by the Single Nucleotide Polymorphism, SNP, (or mutation) known as M253.
(Males belonging to Haplogroup I1 can take a SNP test to check for the  M253 subclade SNPs: eg. DF29, CTS6364, L22, Z74, L813 etc, to further narrow down deep ancestry)
SNP's are mutations that occur very rarely (every hundred years or so) in the human genome and indicate the emergence of a new ancestral line from a single ancestor.

Haplogroup ‘I’, subclade ‘I1’, geographically, is highly concentrated in Nth Germany, Denmark, Sth Norway and Sth Sweden.
I1-M253- A new study in 2015 estimated the origin between 3,470 to 5,070 years ago or between 3,180 to 3,760 years ago, using two different techniques. It is suggested that it initially dispersed from the area that is now Denmark. 

The Y-DNA test creates a Y-DNA signature or haplotype using Y-chromosome Short Tandem Repeat (ie. STR) Markers, which can be compared with the Y-DNA signature of others. The Y-DNA signature distinguishes your paternal lineage from others, as the Y-chromosome is passed down through the male line, father to son, for generations.

All men with the I1- M253 y-chromosome SNP share a common ancestor, and all of their STR markers can be expected to be in a range around that of their forefather.
Certain STR Markers (and their ‘values’) indicate specifically belonging to the I1 Haplogroup.
DYS455 = value 8, is virtually exclusive to I1. Most males are 11 at this marker and the deletion to 8 is believed to have taken place about 5000 years ago. (Laurence’s descendant’s TEST= 8)

Varieties of I1 have been defined by Dr. Ken Nordtvedt based on STR haplotypes:
DYS511 has a value of 10 in Norse and Ultra-Norse varieties, but have a value of 9 in Anglos Saxon varieties. (Descendant’s TEST=10)
DYS462 is similarly useful- value 13 in Norse, and 12 in Anglo-Saxon varieties. (TEST= 13)
YCAII is universally 19, 21 for I1.   (TEST= 19, 21)

The website, has the following information:
The I haplogroup is the oldest major haplogroup in Europe and in all probability the only one that originated there.
I1 is estimated to have split away from the I haplogroup some 5,000 years ago. Men belonging to this haplogroup all descend from a single ancestor.
The Danish and Norwegian Vikings brought I1 to Britain, Ireland, the Isle of Man, Normandy, Flanders, Iberia.

Grouping by STR:
All Germanic tribes expanded from a small geographic core around Denmark and Southern Sweden. STR variations allows to divide I1 members in various categories. 

The Northern Cluster, peaking in Norway, Sweden and Finland, which corresponds to the I1a2 (L22+) subclade, normally has an STR value greater than 22 for DYS390 (Descendant's TEST= 23)
          -the Norse group corresponds to Ken Nordtvedt’s Norse (mostly Swedish) and Ultra-Norse (mostly Norwegian and Icelandic) haplotypes. The Ultra-Norse haplotype I (I1-uN1) differs from the Norse by having DYS385b=15 and usually DYS449=29  (Descendant's TEST: DYS385=13-14; DYS449=28)
Refer to the  'I haplogroup, subclade I1 Project'- find Laurence Butler Kit 294887

Haplogroup Subclades
Haplogroups can be further divided into subgroups, called subclades, as defined by a mutation change in a SNP, each with their own branches of SNP changes, which narrows down a place and time when the original ancestor of one’s particular lineage lived. They refer to these branches as a mutation occurring “downstream” from the line of descent - eg., in the I1-M253, or M253+ tree, - the DF29 and Z131 SNPs are two different branches of the I1- M253 tree; DF29 has further branches, and so on, reducing the time-frame of a shared ancestor, and predicted place of migration.
Further SNP divisions are being discovered all the time, so the Haplotree continues to evolve.

Laurence Butler's descendant has taken SNP tests for L22, Z74 and L813 which were found positive.

Subclades L22+ and the later Z74 are Norse, founders having lived up in Scandinavia. Z74 is further divided into the L287 branch which is predominantly Finnish (using SNP CTS2208 to confirm or negate- Laurence's descendant was negative for this SNP), and L813 which spread NW into Norway and via the Vikings into Britain, SE Ireland, and the northern Netherlands area, and probably the Normandy area (but not Germany). This was estimated to be in the period about 1500 to 1700 years ago. It has been observed that Haplogroup I decreases in Britain when moving east to west, influenced by the Danish Vikings settling in the Danelaw areas of the eastern counties, and that the Norwegian Viking invaders influenced the northern  area of Britain around York, and including mainland Scotland in the east.

In summary, Laurence Butler's hapolgroup and subclades (SNP's) are summarised as;
I-I1-M253-D29-CTS6364-L22-Z74-L813, which is ultra-Norse /uN2- from a single ancestor living about 1550-2000 years ago. 

Further deep SNP testing (Big Y test), has found that Laurence's terminal SNP is labelled as I1a1b1a4a2b- SNP FCG15298/Y5154

Conclusion:  the above information indicates that Laurence’s descendant comes from the Northern Cluster of Norse haplotypes (I1-L22, Z74+, L813), and L22- uN2 (ultra Norse type 2 with a common recent ancestor of about 1570 years ago), which means Laurence and his descendants are probably of Norwegian Viking heritage.

Interestingly, the first of the Butler line in Ireland was Theobald Walter, and Theobald’s grandfather Hervey and father Hervey Walter were granted lands in Weeton, Lancashire and also held lands in East Anglia, Norfolk & Suffolk in 1130 which are in the Danelaw areas.
Hervey the elder (no surnames in England at this point) is supposed to have been a Norman, and to have accompanied William the Conqueror to England in 1066.
The name 'Hervey', derived from the French 'HervĂ© ', arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. It is a name of ancient Norman or Breton origin, from the Breton given name Haerviu, meaning 'battle worthy'.

The Normans first settled in the area of France named Normandy in around 918 by the leader of a group of Viking settlers, named Rollo (c.846-c.932), who came from a noble warrior family of Scandinavia. Rollo sailed off to Scotland, Ireland, England and Flanders on pirating expeditions before settling on Frankish soil in the valley of the lower Seine. The King of West Francia ceded them lands between the mouth of the Seine and the city of Rouen in return for protection against further incursion by Norse bands. This became the Duchy of Normandy which was ruled by Rollo’s descendants.
William the Conqueror, Duke of Normandy, King William I of England, was 3x great grandson of Rollo, and his many Norman followers were mostly descendants of this original Viking band. 

However, not all of William’s followers were necessarily Normans. The historian, Gwyn Jones ['History of the Vikings'] makes it clear that: although Danes formed the bulk of Rollo's band, there were Anglo-Danes from the Danelaw amongst them, some Hiberno-Norse, a few Swedes and a small Norwegian contingent that allegedly settled the Cotentin (peninsula on NW coast of France extending into the English Channel towards Great Britain, near the Channel Islands) in the 9th and 10th centuries. Duke William recruited from the whole of northern France with some outliers. The bulk of his invasion force of 1066 were 'native Norman' but these men would not be Scandinavian on all lines due to intermarriage with women of the Gallo-Frankish culture. The second largest contingents were from Flanders and Brittany. Other areas of recruitment were Ile De France, Gascony etc. The invasion force of 1066 was, far from being 'Danish', something of a mixed Celto-Germanic bag- native Normans, Bretons, Flemings, Franks, Gascons etc.

During the 9th century, Ireland was attacked by Viking raids and a Viking longport was established at Dublin. Most of the early raiders came from the fjords of western Norway, under the leadership of Olaf and his kinsman Ivar. They entered into alliances with various Irish rulers. Their descendants were forced to leave Dublin in 902, but remained active around the Irish Sea. A new Viking fleet appeared in Waterford Harbour in 914 and another near Leixlip in Leinster, and regained control of Dublin. Some of these were Danish Vikings. A more intensive period of settlement in Ireland began, with Viking longports established at Dublin, Wexford, Waterford, Cork and Limerick which became the first large towns in Ireland, and they founded many other coastal towns. After several generations of coexistence and intermarriage, a group of mixed Irish and Norse ethnic background arose, which shows in the DNA evidence in some residents of these coastal cities to this day.

Laurence Butler’s Norse DNA ancestry could be attributed to either of the above scenarios- as a direct descendant of Theobald Walter, a Norman knight who arrived in Co. Wexford in Leinster when King Henry II invaded in 1171, and was granted the hereditary title ‘Chief Butler of Ireland’, hence the origin of the surname ‘le Botelier’ or ‘Butler’ in Ireland; or a direct descendant of one of the Viking settlers in Leinster, particularly Wexford, dating back to the 9th or 10th centuries, and having acquired the Butler surname, possibly through a marriage alliance, sometime down the centuries that followed. 
A third possibility is that Laurence's Y-DNA comes from a 'Non-paternity Event' in his paternal ancestry, with a paternal ancestor of unknown origin descended from Viking settlers. 

Laurence Butler's Y-DNA Profile or Signature from his descendants' signatures

To prove that the results of Y-DNA tests done on the descendants of Laurence Butler makes up Laurence Butler's Y-DNA haplotype signature, a Y-DNA test was conducted on a descendant of each of Laurence Butler's two sons, viz. Walter Butler (b. 1807 Sydney, to Mary Ann Fowles) and Lawrence Butler Junior (b.1812 Sydney, to Ann Roberts).

These Y-DNA results can be viewed on the FamilyTreeDNA Butler Surname Y-DNA Project  website  under the name of ancestor Laurence Butler b.1750 Wexford, Ire.  At this stage, there have been no matches with any of the other 530+ Butlers listed in the Butler Surname Project, but this is a new science in genealogical research and will expand in the coming years.

The Y-DNA tests were conducted by Family Tree DNA at , and specifically, the Butler Surname Project Y-DNA tests linked with Family Tree DNA, (which offer a discount):

The descendant of Walter Butler (by 1st wife Margaret Dunn) had 111 STR markers tested and is 7th generation down from Laurence Senior; and the descendant of Lawrence Butler Junior (by 1st wife Catherine Gorman) had 67 STR markers tested, and is also 7th generation.

The test results for various levels show that the two descendants match exactly for the first 25 markers; for 36 out of 37 markers; and for 64 out of 67 markers, with three mutations, which is defined as a Genetic Distance of 3; and they have the same HAPLO group ( I1- M253).
Historically, it should also be taken into account that when Walter (b.1807) and Lawrence Jnr (b.1812) were born, the colony of New South Wales had a population of only a few thousand, many of whom lived outside of Sydney, whereas Laurence Butler Snr lived in Sydney. This small population statistic can be further divided by gender, age, and class status viz. convict, emancipated convict, free settler, military, or government official. Both sons were named and recognised as Laurence Butler’s sons in his Will of 1820. So this further confirms that Laurence Butler Senior was undoubtedly the biological father of Walter and Lawrence Junior.
‘Familytreedna’ interprets the criteria for Genetic Distance at 67 Y-Chromosome STR markers, when two men share a surname:
A Genetic Distance of 3 or 4 are related- 63/67 or 64/67 match between two men who share the same surname (or a variant) means that they are likely to share a common ancestor within the genealogical time frame. The common ancestor is probably not extremely recent but is likely within the range of most well-established surname lineages in Western Europe.
The Genealogical Time Frame is the most recent one to fifteen generations. Recent genealogical times are the last one to five generations.
A Genetic Distance of 1 or 2 are tightly related- 65/67 or 66/67 match between two men who share the same surname (or a variant) indicates a close relationship (within one to five generations). It is most likely that they matched 36/37 or 37/37 on a previous Y-DNA test. Very few people achieve this close level of a match.

In the case of these two descendants, 7th generation down from Laurence Butler is not classed as within the ‘recent genealogical time-frame of 5 generations’, which accounts for one extra marker variation, viz. 64 out of 67, in that time-frame. There was probably one changed marker on one line and two on the other. Notably, all three marker changes were in fast changing STR’s (DYS570, DYS557 and DYS446).

The Y-DNA tests therefore provide us with Laurence Butler's Y-DNA haplotype signature for 67 markers, plus the probable haplotype for the remaining markers between 67 and 111 (with the possibility of some further mutations occurring in one or two of the remaining markers, noting that some markers are more prone to mutations than others). Only an upgrade to a 111 marker test of the second descendant, or of another descendant, would prove if there are any further mutations.

The testing of these two descendants of Laurence’s two sons by two different women, is a rather rare and unusual scientific study, providing absolute proof of the Y chromosome haplotype of a man, born in 1750 living more than 260 years ago, and where the paper trail of descent matches the Y-DNA evidence.

Y-DNA test results of descendant of Lawrence Butler Jnr:

NB. STR Markers, DYS 570, 557 and 446, marked in red, differ from the test of Walter Butler's descendant, below.

Y-DNA Test results of descendant of Walter Butler:

Explanations: NB Micro Alleles marker DYS710: this is a high frequency mutating YSTR that is very useful for near range/family genealogical studies. Micro Alleles = part of a repeat for an STR is lost.
eg. if you are 33.2 and a cousin is 33.1, or 33.3, you can determine that the mutation occurred with either your father or your cousin's father.

Markers DYS19 ** (value 14), and DYS389II*** (value 28) notably have red stars against them.
DYS19** -is also known as DYS394
DYS389II***- the Family Tree DNA and the Genographic Project report DYS389II differently

The above two tests confirm Laurence Butler's Y-DNA Haplotype signature, for at least 64 STR markers of the first 67 markers, and for most of the remaining markers to 111, with possibly one to three further mutation/changes in STR Markers 68 to 111. 
In summary, Laurence Butler's Y-DNA profile (and his male descendants) looks like the following:

NB. X denotes mutations in DYS570 (20-19), DYS557 (15-16) and DYS446 (13-12) between Descendants 1 and 2. 

This Y-DNA profile would be confirmed if male descendants from Walter's three different family lines (by Margaret Dunn, Eliza Dwyer, and Frances Edwards), and Lawrence Junior's two descendant lines (by Catherine Gorman and Fanny Rainy), also took the test to see if the results match the Y-DNA profile above, particularly in showing in which generation and lineage, markers DYS 570, 557 and 446 have changed since Laurence's two sons were born. 

There are various levels of testing available, 25 markers, 37 markers, 67 markers and 111 markers (and ultimately the 'Big Y test' which also tests 500+ markers). The more markers tested the more reliable the match. 25 markers can also match with many other non-Butlers, so the minimum should be at least 37 markers, but the more markers tested increases the accuracy of a match and the 67 marker test is recommended.

If Laurence's Y-DNA profile  eventually matches with Laurence's descendants of his first family in Wexford by wife Catherine, it may even lead to sorting out Laurence Butler's ancestry- whether from the Chief Butler/Ormond/Mountgarrett lines or from other more recent Butler immigrants to Ireland from England, or even (heaven forbid!) a non-Butler line in Ireland, of Viking ancestry.

Being of Norman/Viking ancestry, one could generalize that Theobald Walter's DNA would have most likely been from the I Haplogroup, but the passage of nearly thirty generations and 900 years makes the likelihood of his Y-DNA continuing down the male Butler line to the present day, uninterrupted, pretty slim.
Notably, at this stage (viz. in 2015), of 530 Butlers tested, the majority are American participants. The majority have not indicated the origin of their ancestor, as for many Americans their ancestral place of origin is unknown, but others have indicated mostly English and some Irish descent. The Butler Project is showing up an unexpected result- there are two distinct lines of ancient ancestry (viz. Haplo groups, R and I that are not related) in the Irish Butler lines. Irish and English Butlers historically have totally different ancestral beginnings, but the different results within the Irish descendants, despite the general consensus that nearly all Irish Butlers 'descend' from the first Butler, Theobald Walter, could mean there were some Non-Paternity Events (NPE- viz. father not biological father) occurring somewhere down the generations; or non-Butlers have taken the Butler surname eg. tenants and servants taking their overlord’s surname; or the husbands of female Butler sole heirs, or their eldest son, taking the Butler surname for inheritance purposes, such as the O’Brien Butlers and the Creaghe Butlers.  The majority of Butlers in the Butler Surname Project so far, belong to the Haplogroup R1b1a2, including a descendant of the Viscount Ikerrin and Earl of Carrick lines (who descend from John Butler [1306-1330], younger brother of the 1st Earl of Ormond), but there is still a sizeable group from the I Haplogroup. At present, the Carrick descendant is the only known direct descendant of the Ormond/Chief Butler line who has taken the test, and that line broke away from the senior line seven centuries ago, so it is too early in the project to make a conclusion about the probable Haplo groups of the Ormond Butlers. And it also must be taken into account that over the period of several centuries, the true paternity of each generation being a Butler sire cannot be guaranteed.

At present, this science is still in its infancy, but within the next ten years, one can see this gaining momentum as genealogists come to realise that Y-DNA testing could be the solution to breaking down that brick wall in their search for their ancestral roots. As more and more Butlers take the test, patterns of paternal lineages and common ancestors should emerge. It may also lead to disappointment (and possibly some family disharmony) as some will discover they may not be of 'Butler' descent, but as family historians, we have all come to accept the 'skeletons in the closet' and the 'black sheep' that we have each unearthed in our quest, and we should be capable of accepting that our ancestors, no matter from whence they have come and what they have endured or experienced, have contributed to who we are today. And most importantly, without them, we would not exist.

© B.A. Butler

See my blogs on Lawrence's father Laurence Butler Senior and brother Walter Butler and sister Mary Ann Butler for more detailed information on their lives:

Contact  butler1802  @hotmail. com  (NB. with no spaces)

Links to all chapters in this blog:

Lawrence Butler Junior's childhood, education, and apprenticeship as a compositor
Lawrence Butler's life as a compositor in years 1833 to 1839, and first marriage
Lawrence Ormond Butler's life in Melbourne 1839 to 1844, and second marriage
Lawrence Ormond Butler's life in years 1845 until his death in 1856, and third marriage
Issue of Lawrence Ormond Butler
The significance of the middle  name of 'Ormond'
The history of the Butlers
The different branches of Butlers in Ireland
The MacRichard line of Butlers in Ireland

[1] NSW Registry of BDM- V1812407 6/1812- birth- Lawrence Butler
[2] Ibid, 1047/1856- death- Lawrence Ormond Butler
[3] Ibid, V1833348 73A1833- marriage- Lawrence Butler, Catherine Gorman
[4] AGCI Record held by SAG Ref B7/11/38 p26; B7/11/59 p51 Record No 914 (S-F)
[5] Ibid, V1840623 75/1840- marriage- Lawrence Ormond Butler, Agnes McPherson; and IGI Record
[6] Ibid, 1047/1856- death Lawrence O. Butler
[7], England Births & Baptisms 1813-1906- London Metropolitan Archives St. James, Paddington, Westminster, register of Baptisms, P87/JS, item 007
[8] NSW Registry of B.D.M.- 2979/1885 Frances Henry (nee George nee Butler nee Rainy)
[9] SRNSW: Colonial Secretary; [4/1836B no.148 p681-90]; Walter Butler’s Memorial; 6 Dec 1824, Fiche 3081.
[10] Will of Laurence Butler (Senior); Copy of original from Supreme Court of NSW, Sydney.