Thanks for your posting. Below is the info I have on the subject and my thoughts.
HUGH BOYCE- this is James’ brother!
Originally I had Hugh’s father as Hugh and James and Hugh as cousins.
I have seen Hugh’s mother has been given as Elizabeth Hamilton. Did Elizabeth remarry after James was born in 1825? It was a custom for a brother to marry his brother’s widow- did this happen?
From Vital Records Index – British Isles
Wife: Jane Murray
Marriage date: 5 Nov 1849 (Hugh would have been 19- not uncommon)
Recorded in: Civil Registration for Ireland
Husband’s father: Hugh Boyce
Wife’s father: Thomas Murray
Source: FHL Number 101310
Following naming patterns- a good guide, but obviously not absolutely reliable:
His first son seems to have been named after Jane’s father: Thomas
His second son was named James, suggesting Hugh’s father was James, and not Hugh!?
His fourth son is Hugh named after himself?
I suppose we will never know.
Hugh Boyce b.1830 Donaghadee, d.27/11/1882, Dalry
o. labourer, Ballymacruse (quite close to Donaghadee)
parents: James( Hugh?) Boyce and Elizabeth Hamilton (St James the Apostl ?
m. Jane Murray 6/11/1849, Millisle, Presbyterian Church, Donaghadde
o. spinster, Drumfad father: Thomas Murray, labourer
witnesses John Watts and John Patterson
*Thomas 1854 Dalry
James 6/1/1855 Dalry
Robert 30/11/1856 Dalry
Hugh 13/4/1858 Dalry
Mary 7/3/1860 Dalry
James 12/3/1862 Dalry - suggests that the first James is deceased
Jane 8/11/1863 Dalry
Elizabeth 8/4/1866 Dalry
Margaret AA 9/6/1869 Dalry (Aitken Anderson) Don't know!!
Ann 9/7/1872 Dalry
*Thomas Boyce m. Mary McVettie 1/1/1872 Dalry
b Kilbirnie parents John Cranie (furnace keeper) and Mary
Jane Murray 14/10/1872, New Cummock (Dalry?)
Mary 19/12/1873 Dalry
m. Thomas Jackson 1894 Dalry. Went to Canada
h. Thomas, Mary Ann
Hugh 22/10/1875 Renfrew Abbey, Paisley
John 5/9/1877 Dalry
m. Alice Lowe 30/9/1898
Thomas 3/1/1882 Dalry
Margaret 25/2/1884 Dalry
Ann 6/4/1886 Barrhead, Renfrew