Friday, 4 September 2015

Farnham: I

I arrived in County Cavan about midday and made a beeline for Farnham Estate, now a country house hotel.

The old mansion house still stands and is integrated into a modern building behind it, connected by a massive glass structure.

The portico of the mansion house is therefore indoors now.

Several function rooms and the bridal suite are located in the mansion house.

I lunched in the new section. I had a rather tasty bowl of potato and squash soup with wheaten bread (€6).

After lunch I drive the shirt distance to my guesthouse, which is in the surrounding countryside.

My room overlooks forest and woodland on the edge of Farnham estate.

Farnham Estate

This family settled in Ireland during the reign of ELIZABETH I, and is a branch of the Scottish house of MAXWELL, Earls of Nithsdale. 
SIR HERBERT MAXWELL was ancestor of Herbert, created, in 1424, Lord Maxwell, of Caerlaverock, whose descendant, Robert, 10th Lord Maxwell, was created 1620, Earl of Nithsdale. 
Sir John Maxwell, only brother of Herbert, was ancestor of a branch which settled in Ireland during the reign of ELIZABETH I.
THE VERY REV ROBERT MAXWELL, second son of John Maxwell, of Calderwood, in Scotland, went over into Ireland in the latter end of the reign of ELIZABETH I, by command of JAMES VI, in order to secure an interest for His Majesty in that kingdom.

Mr Maxwell was appointed Dean of Armagh, which deanery, together with other considerable church livings, he held till his decease.

He married secondly, Isabella Seton, of the very ancient house of SETON, in Scotland, by whom he had issue,
ROBERT, his heir;
Elizabeth; Phoebe.
The Dean's eldest son,

ROBERT MAXWELL, took holy orders, and obtained the degree of Doctor of Divinity from the university of Dublin.

Previously to the rebellion of 1641, Dr Maxwell was rector of Tynan, in the diocese of Armagh, and Archdeacon of Down.

In 1643, he was consecrated Lord Bishop of Kilmore; and in 1661, the episcopal see of Ardagh was granted to him, to hold in commendam with that of Kilmore.

His lordship wedded Margaret, daughter of the Rt Rev Henry Echlin, Lord Bishop of Down and Connor, by whom he had, with five daughters, four sons, namely,
JOHN, who built Farnham House and resided there; d 1713 without issue;
James, of Fellow's Hall, Co Armagh, father of
Henry, of College Hall, Co Armagh; father of
JOHN, who succeeded his cousin ROBERT in the estates;
The Bishop died in 1672, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

JOHN MAXWELL, of Farnham, who died without issue, in 1713, and was succeeded by his nephew,

THE REV ROBERT MAXWELL DD. This gentleman dsp 1737, and was succeeded by his cousin,

JOHN MAXWELL (1687-1759), who represented County Cavan in parliament from 1727 until elevated to the peerage, in 1756, by the title of Baron Farnham.

His lordship wedded, in 1719, Judith, heiress of James Barry, of Newtownbarry, County Wexford, by whom he had issue,
BARRY, successive peers;
Henry (Most Rev), father of JOHN and HENRY.
The 1st Baron was succeeded by his eldest son,

ROBERT, 2nd Baron (c1720-79), who was created Viscount, in 1761, and EARL OF FARNHAM, in 1763.

His lordship wedded firstly, in 1759, Henrietta, Dowager Countess of Stafford, and sole daughter and heir of Philip Cantillon, by whom he had one daughter,
Henrietta, m, in 1780, Rt Hon Dennis Daly, of Dunsandle, Co Galway.
His lordship espoused secondly, in 1771, Sarah, only daughter of Pole Cosby, of Stradbally Hall, Queen's County, and sister of Lord Sydney; but leaving no male issue at his decease, in 1779, the honours conferred upon himself expired, while the barony devolved upon his brother,

BARRY, 3rd Baron (1723-1800), who obtained a viscountcy and earldom, as Viscount Farnham, in 1780, and EARL OF FARNHAM (2nd creation), in 1785.

His lordship married firstly, in 1751, Margaret, second daughter and co-heir of Robert King, of Drewstown, County Meath, by whom he had a son and two daughters; and secondly, in 1771, Grace, daughter of Arthur Burdet, by whom he had two daughters.

He was succeeded by his only son,

JOHN JAMES, 2nd Earl (1760-1823), who wedded Grace, only daughter of Thomas Cuffe, of Grange, County Kilkenny; but dying without issue, in 1823, the viscountcy and earldom expired, while the barony reverted to his kinsman,

JOHN MAXWELL-BARRY, 5th Baron (1767-1838) [refer to Henry, third son of 1st Baron].

His lordship, who was a privy counsellor, and colonel of the Cavan Militia, married, in 1789, Juliana Lucy, eldest daughter of Arthur, 1st Earl of Mountnorris, but her ladyship died in 1833 without issue.

He was succeeded by his brother,

THE REV HENRY MAXWELL, as 6th Baron (1774-1838), who wedded, in 1798, Lady Anne Butler, eldest daughter of Henry, 2nd Earl of Carrick, by whom he had issue,
HENRY, his heir;
John Barry;
Charles Robert;
Edward William;
James Pierce;
Robert Thomas;
William George;
Sarah Juliana; Harriet Margaret; Anne.
The 6th Baron died within less than a month of his accession to the title, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

HENRY, 7th Baron,
Henry Maxwell, 7th Baron (1799–1868);
Somerset Richard Maxwell, 8th Baron (1803–84);
James Pierce Maxwell, 9th Baron (1813–96);
Somerset Henry Maxwell, 10th Baron (1849–1900);
Arthur Kenlis Maxwell, 11th Baron (1879–1957);
Barry Owen Somerset Maxwell, 12th Baron (1931–2001);
Simon Kenlis Maxwell, 13th Baron (b 1933).

FARNHAM, near Cavan, is one of the largest houses in County Cavan.

The lands were originally granted to the family of Waldron, though some years later the estate was acquired by Bishop Maxwell, whose cathedral was nearby.

The Bishop's son, John Maxwell, built a new house here about 1700, which was improved ca 1780 by Barry, 3rd Baron and 1st Earl of Farnham.

The 1st Earl added a library designed by James Wyatt.

About 1802, the 2nd Earl rebuilt the house, comprising two three-storey ranges at right angles to each other; one of which incorporated Wyatt's library.

It consisted of an eight-bay front, a breakfront, and a single-storey portico.

The other front was of nine bays, with a three-bay pedimented breakfront, prolonged by one bay at the end of the adjoining range.

In 1839, the 7th Baron enlarged Farnham by building new offices.     

It was built ca 1810 and was designed by Francis Johnston, a leading Dublin architect. 

About 1960, Lord Farnham found the house to be infested with dry-rot and demolished the range where the former entrance had been located.

The pedimented front remains the garden front; while the back range is the entrance front, with the portico re-erected at one end of it.

The house was redesigned in the 1970s.

The demesne has long been celebrated for its great beauty, a landscape of woods, panoramic mountain views, lakes; all part of the network of loughs and islands stretching southwards from Upper Lough Erne.

It was sold by the widowed Lady Farnham to Mr Roy McCabe, who purchased the agricultural estate shortly after the demise of the 12th Lord Farnham, in 2001.

The house and estate are now part of a luxury hotel and leisure complex under the Radisson SAS international hotel group. 

Farnham arms courtesy of European Heraldry.  First published in April, 2011.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Mary Ward, 1827-69

My previous article about Downpatrick gate lodge, Castle Ward, County Down, reminded me of Mary Ward and her wonderful gift as a watercolour artist.

I have seen a delightful painting of the lodge and its surroundings taken by her in the mid-19th century:
The steeply-raked roof, twin lofty chimneys,white-washed walls and decorative woodwork finials and valances in the Bangor family's shade of golden yellow, as seen on their coat-of-arms. 
The fine railings appear dark green and one of the gates is wide open. The lawns at each side are newly-mown.

Downpatrick gate lodge must have been built prior to Mary Ward's untimely death in 1869.

The Hon Mrs Henry Ward  (Mary Ward) was born in 1827 though, sadly, her life was cut short by a tragic motor accident in 1869.

Had she survived, Mary Ward would have become the 5th Viscountess Bangor.

Her husband, the Hon Henry Ward, went on to become the 5th Viscount; and her son, the Hon Maxwell Ward, eventually succeeded as the 6th Viscount.

First published in May, 2009

Kintullagh Castle


DR WILLIAM YOUNG (1792-1854), of Galgorm Castle, County Antrim (son of William Young by his wife, Jane Hunter), thrice married, graduated as a Doctor of Medicine.

He married firstly, Anne, daughter of William Gihon, in 1823; secondly, Jane Crawford after 1835; thirdly, Maria Miller after 1844.

By his first wife he had issue,
John, of Galgorm Castle;
WILLIAM ALEXANDER, of whom we treat.
The younger son,

WILLIAM ALEXANDER YOUNG (1829-94), married Margaret Gihon, daughter of Andrew Todd Dickey, and had issue, four children, of whom two survived:

KINTULLAGH CASTLE, near Ballymena, County Antrim, is a Victorian-Jacobean house, not dissimilar in appearance to Tempo Manor in County Fermanagh.

Its construction, ca 1863, has been attributed to Thomas Turner, of Belfast.

It has curvilinear gables; rectangular and round-headed plate glass windows, some of the former having entablatures on which there is strap-work.

There is a square corner turret with belfry and ogee spire.

THE RIGHT HON JOHN YOUNG, chairman and founder of the Braidwater Spinning Company, purchased the land at Kintullagh from Sir Robert Shafto Adair Bt in 1864.

Kintullagh Castle was built as a wedding gift for Mr Young's son and daughter-in-law, William and Margaret, said to be of French origin.

The initials of the bride and groom (Margaret and William) are engraved over the doors and windows of Kintullagh, and the French emblem is very much in evidence all over the building.

The Misses Mary and Edith Young continued to live at Kintullagh until 1918, when it was purchased by two brothers-in-law, Dr E B Armstrong and Mr S Gilmer.

In the early 1920s, Kintullagh changed hands again: It was bought on behalf of the Roman Catholic parish of Ballymena and rented to the Sisters of Saint Louis (who purchased it outright in the 1960s).

Mr John Bryson is married to Rose Young, great-granddaughter of William and Margaret Young.

First published in September, 2013.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Horse Island

I had a great day with seven other National Trust volunteers at Horse Island on the Ards Peninsula.

This island is a mile south of the village of Kircubbin, County Down.

Today we were uprooting ragwort and "strimming" rushes.

We picked two truck-loads of the ragwort.

The mechanical strimmer is a powerful implement, cutting through course vegetation like a hot knife through butter.

In the middle of the field there is a derelict cottage. It has two rooms.

The National Trust has erected a provisional iron roof on the building in order to prevent further deterioration.

Apparently it was last inhabited in the early 1980s.

Sir Arthur Chichester


I have unearthed this historical extract from a volume of the Ulster Journal of Archaeology, which I personally find provides a fascinating insight:-
The intrinsic interest of this humorous narrative of the holiday excursion of a knot of English officers in Ulster in the last days of ELIZABETH I's reign derives an extrinsic attraction from the fact that its author was a brother of the famous founder of the Bodleian Library. 
Sir Josias Bodley (ca 1550-1617) was the youngest of Sir Thomas Bodley's four brothers. In March, 1604, he was knighted by Mountjoy. 
After the pacification of Ireland he was appointed to superintend the Castles of Ireland. 
In 1609 Bodley was selected to survey the Ulster Plantation, and in recognition of this work received the appointment of director-general of the fortifications of Ireland, a post which he held until his death. Bodley, who died in 1617, was buried at Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin.
Sir Arthur Chichester, the founder of the fortunes and acquirer of the immense estates (though not the direct ancestor) of the Donegall family, is too well known in Irish history to need much notice here.

He was, at that time, Governor of Carrickfergus; and as Sergeant-Major of the army, somewhat similar to the rank of General, had command over the whole of the troops in Ulster; and had, accordingly, concentrated at Dungannon the troops under his own immediate command,

as well as those of the western parts of Ulster under the command of Sir Henry Dockwra (whose headquarters were at Derry, and under whose superintendence the walls and fortifications of that town were shortly afterwards erected) to drive Tyrone out of his fastnesses.

Choosing such a season of the year, to perform such a duty in such a locality, Sir Arthur proved himself as ignorant in strategy as he was subsequently pre-eminent in statesmanship;

and it is amusing to read the growlings of the rough old soldier, Dockwra, as given in his narrative, at being dragged across the country on such a fruitless expedition, and his despair on climbing a hill to view the woods of Glenconkeine*, spread far and wide before him,

without a road to penetrate or a guide to trust; besides having to ford a river which, if swollen by rain, would eventually cut off his retreat.

It reminds us of some of the difficulties we read of as attendant on the late Caffre war.

Sir Arthur Chichester was appointed Lord Deputy of Ireland, 1604-5, and held that office for the long period of ten years, during which time he was created a peer [1st Baron Chichester].

He was then appointed Lord High Treasurer, and held that office till his death in 1625.

His monument is to be seen in Carrickfergus Church.

He died without issue and was succeeded by his brother.
*Glenconkeine - comprised parishes which included Desertmartin ... extended nearly from Dungannon to Dungiven. Dockwra says it was a wilderness of woods, ravines and mountains, extending 20 miles in length and 10 in breadth; and all the writers of that day agree that as a fastness it was almost impenetrable.
Traditions still exist amongst the mountains of Londonderry and Tyrone of the immense forests that filled their valleys; and of their being inaccessible from the total absence of roads.

Chichester arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Dungiven Castle


This branch settled in Ulster at the time of the Plantation.

All the records of the family (originally Ogilvie) were destroyed by fire in Scotland in 1784.

The original residence was at Calhame, Aberdeenshire.

DR JOHN OGILVIE, of Aberdeen, who settled in Limavady, a great friend of the celebrated Bishop Burnetmarried Elizabeth Agnew, of the Scottish family of that name, who settled in County Antrim.

He was succeeded by his son,

ALEXANDER OGILBY, who changed the spelling of the name from Ogilvie.

He married firstly, Ann Smith, and by her had issue,
ALEXANDER, his heir;
Mary Anne.
Mr Ogilby was succeeded by his son,

ALEXANDER OGILBY, who wedded Mary, eldest daughter of James Alexander, of Limavady (whose family came originally from the shire of Clackmannan in Scotland), by his wife Elizabeth Ross, and had issue,
JOHN, his heir;
Robert, of Pellipar;
David (Sir);
Leslie, of Strangemore;
Ann; Elizabeth; Mary; Jane.
Mr Ogilby was succeeded by his eldest son,

JOHN OGILBY, of Ardnargle, near Limavady, born in 1746, who married Jane, daughter of James Simpson, of Armagh, and had issue,
Alexander, dsp;
John, dsp;
JAMES, his heir;
David, dsp;
ROBERT LESLIE, of whom presently;
Ann; Jane; Mary.
Mr Ogilby was succeeded by his third son,

JAMES OGILBY, of Ardnargle, who espoused Bridget Rush, and dsp 1849.

Mr Ogilby was succeeded by his brother,

ROBERT LESLIE OGILBY JP DL (1798-1872), of Ardnargle, High Sheriff, 1854, who married, in 1844, Elizabeth Matilda, daughter of Major William Henry Rainey, of the East India Company, and by her had issue,
John W H;
David Leslie;
Margaret Harriet; Jane Ann;
Elizabeth; Mary Isabella.
Mr Ogilby was succeeded by his eldest son,

ROBERT ALEXANDER OGILBY JP DL (1850-1902), of Ardnargle, and Pellipar House, Dungiven; High Sheriff, 1887; Captain, 4th King's Own Regiment; served in Zulu War.

Under the will of his great-uncle, Robert Ogilby, he succeeded on the death of his cousin, James Ogilby, to the Limavady, Pellipar, Tyrone and Woolwich estates.

He married, in 1875, Helen Sarah, second daughter of the Rev George Bomford Wheeler, Rector of Ballysax, County Kildare, and had issue,
Ethel Maude; Mabel Norah;
Esther Gladys; Mildred Constance.
Mr Ogilby was succeeded by his only son,

LIEUTENANT-COLONEL ROBERT JAMES LESLIE OGILBY DSO JP DL (1880-1964), of Ardnargle, Limavady, and Pellipar House, Dungiven, co. Londonderry.

Colonel Ogilby was a kinsman of both the Earl Alexander of Tunis and the Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, through the line of the Alexanders of Limavady.

He was also brother-in-law of Brigadier-General George Delamain Crocker.
Colonel Ogilby entered the Army as a 2nd lieutenant, 4th (Royal Irish) Dragoon Guards 1903-1905; a lieutenant, 2nd Life Guards; High Sheriff, 1911; 29 Aug 1914 joined the Special reserve Officers as lieutenant; 29 Feb 1915, captain (Royal Irish) Dragoon Guards; 1916, Major and 2nd in Command of the 7th Norfolk Regiment; 1916, lieutenant-colonel commanding 2/114 London Regiment (London Scottish). He served with the British Expeditionary Force (dispatches London Gazette); served 1916-1919 in the war; Belgian Croix de Guerre, Star, 1914; DSO and bar, 1917.
The Woolwich estate was bought at public auction in 1812 by Robert Ogilby (younger brother of John Ogilby), who also leased, in 1803, the Skinners estate at Dungiven and lived at Pellipar House.

Ardnargle was not strictly, therefore, a dower house for Pellipar, although it was used as such when R A Ogilby (1850-1902) inherited both properties from 1885 onwards.
The Ogilby family has had a proud military tradition: Major Robert Alexander Ogilby married Sarah Wheeler, daughter of Rev George Bomford Wheeler, a founder of the Irish Times, TCD classic scholar and contributor to Dickens' magazine, "All Year Round"; a DL for County Londonderry; captain 4th King's Own Regiment; and took part in the Zulu war (1879, medal).
In 1902, Maurice Marcus McCausland, of Drenagh, married Eileen Leslie, daughter of R A Ogilby DL, of Pellipar.

DUNGIVEN CASTLE, Dungiven, County Londonderry, is largely a 19th century edifice.

It has a long, two-storey, battlemented front with a central polygonal tower; a pointed Gothic doorway and pointed window over.

Round towers are at each end. There are five bays on either side of the centre.

THE CASTLE was for centuries the residence of the O'Cahans.

In 1601, after the submission of Sir Donnell O'Cahan, the Government placed a garrison there, and Sir Henry Dockwra subsequently gave to Sir John Sidney (4th son of Sir Henry Sidney) a lease of the castle and adjoining lands.

In 1604, on the restoration of the Earl of Tyrone, a dispute arose as to the ownership of these lands; but on the flight of the Earls, the Government restored the garrison and placed Captain Edward Doddington in the castle as Constable or Lieutenant.

Sir Arthur Chichester stated that the principal places to be held and garrisoned within the County of Coleraine were the castles of Annagh, Limavady, Coleraine, and Dungiven, albeit most of them were ruinous and out of repair.

At the Plantation of Ulster, this part of County Londonderry in which Dungiven Castle was situated was granted to the Skinners' Company, and their grant from the Honourable the Irish Society was dated 1617.

Captain Doddington was knighted and continued to hold the castle and lands from the Skinners' Company.

In the survey by Captain Nicholas Pynnar in 1618, Lady Doddington, wife of the late Sir Edward Doddington, was in possession of the castle, having taken a grant of it from the Company for 61 years:
"Here is built a strong Castle, being two stories high and a half, with a large Bawn of Lyme and Stone well fortified. In this the Lady is now dwelling, with 24 in her Family."
On the expiry of Lady Doddington's lease, in 1696, the Skinners' Company devised the "Manor of Pellipar and the Castle, town, and land of Dungiven" to Edward Carey.

His son, Henry Carey, in 1742, got a new lease at a rent of £500 on payment of a penalty. The Careys lived in the old castle.

Robert Ogilby, in 1794, paid Mr Carey for his interest in the remainder of the lease, which expired in 1803, and Mr Ogilby then got a new lease from the Skinners' Company on payment of a fine.

The portion of the castle which was standing in 1838 was only one storey, and there are now no traces of the old castle, though the old bawn still remains.

In 1839, Robert Ogilby expended a very large sum of money in rebuilding the castle, and this building is the edifice now standing.

It is at the extremity of the town of Dungiven, and is most beautifully situated, facing south, possessing an extensive foreground with views of the entire chain of the surrounding mountains.

The external appearance is that of a castellated mansion with bastions, flanking towers, etc., with a facade of about 200 feet.

Internally, it was quite unfinished, and it was a matter of regret that it was not finished more in unison with its prepossessing exterior.

Robert Ogilby was bound under his lease from the Skinners' Company to repair, and to uphold and maintain the castle, but he preferred to make his residence at Pellipar.

The bawn has three sides, the present castle forming the fourth and south side, having entrance gateways on the north, east, and west sides.

The pond of water just outside the bawn adds to its picturesqueness.

There are three turrets on the walls, and along the walls are numbers of loopholes and apertures.

On the expiry of Robert Ogilby's lease in 1873, the lands reverted to the Skinners' Company; but in 1890, when the company sold their estates, the castle and grounds were purchased by Robert Alexander Ogilby JP DL, and were inherited by his son, Robert James Leslie Ogilby.

In 1902, Dungiven Castle was inherited by Robert James Leslie Ogilby, who lived in London.

The estate was sold in 1925.

The Castle was occupied by the US Army during the 2nd World War, and later used as a dance hall during the 1950s and 1960s.

Eventually Limavady Borough Council bought Dungiven Castle and thereafter decided to demolish it.

There was public opposition and, with the help of various funding bodies, enough money was finally secured to put the neglected building into good repair.

In March, 2001, Dungiven Castle was re-opened to provide budget accommodation.

In 2009, Dungiven Castle underwent a complete redevelopment and redecoration of the entire property.

First published in September, 2013.