This family is originally from France, where Albert Clements is said to have been a Marshal in 1183.
This family settled in Ireland some time during the reign of JAMES I.
DANIEL CLEMENTS JP (c1624-80), son of Robert Clements, went over to Ireland with Oliver Cromwell.
He was a cornet in the New Model Army, probably in Colonel Thomas Coote's regiment.
It is thought that this family came from Leicestershire. About 1657, Daniel Clements received a grant of land at Rathkenny, County Cavan. He was High Sheriff of County Cavan, 1674; JP, 1675.His son,
ROBERT CLEMENTS (1664-1722), Deputy Vice-Treasurer for Ireland, wedded Mary, eldest daughter of Theophilus Sandford, an ancestor of the Lords Mount Sandford, by whom he had three sons,
THEOPHILUS, his heir;This Robert was attainted by the Irish parliament convoked by King JAMES II in 1689, but was restored to his states in Cavan on the establishment of the government of WILLIAM III, and appointed Deputy Vice-Treasurer of Ireland.
NATHANIEL, succeeded his brother.
THE RT HON THEOPHILUS CLEMENTS, also one of the Tellers of the Exchequer, married Elizabeth, eldest daughter of Francis Burton, of Duncraggy, County Clare; but dying without issue, was succeeded by his next brother,
THE RT HON NATHANIEL CLEMENTS (1705-77), MP, also one of the tellers of the Irish Exchequer; and upon the decease of the Rt Hon Luke Gardiner, Deputy Vice-Treasurer of Ireland.
This gentleman espoused, in 1729, Hannah, eldest daughter of the Very Rev William Gore, Dean of Down, and had issue,
ROBERT;Mr Clements was succeeded at his decease by his eldest son,
Elizabeth, m to Lord Conyngham;
Hannah, m to Sir George Montgomery Bt;
Catherine, m to Eyre, Lord Clarina;
Alicia, m to Ralph Gore, Earl of Ross.
ROBERT CLEMENTS (1732-1804), who was elevated to the peerage, in 1783, as Baron Leitrim, of Manor Hamilton, County Leitrim, in 1783.
His lordship was advanced to a viscountcy, as Viscount Leitrim, in 1793; and further advanced to the dignity of an earldom, as EARL OF LEITRIM, in 1795.
He wedded, in 1765, Elizabeth, daughter of Clotworthy, 1st Earl of Massereene, and by her had issue,
NATHANIEL, his successor;
Robert, 1st Earl (1732–1804)
Nathaniel, 2nd Earl (1768–1854)
Robert Bermingham, Viscount Clements (1805-39)
William Sydney, 3rd Earl (1806-78)
Robert Bermingham, 4th Earl (1847-92)
Charles, 5th and last Earl (1879–1952).
The 4th and 5th Earls, however, mainly used Mulroy House, near Letterkenny, County Donegal, as their residence.
MULROY HOUSE is a large two-storey Tudor-Revival stone house, ca 1865, possibly by William Burn, with fine views over Mulroy Bay, in good condition.
Austere externally but commodious inside and maintained as a dwelling, wings added in 1890s.
Important plant collection begun by the 5th Earl and Countess; later the residence of the Hon Hedley Strutt, Lord Leitrim's nephew.
Extensive and important planting, by the 5th Earl and Countess, of rhododendron, magnolia, eucryphia and other species put in from 1936, mainly along the drives and sheltered by pre-existing shelter belts from the 1860s; a great deal of the latter suffered during Hurricane Debbie in the 1960s.
Lady O'Neill (in an article pre-1985) refers to huge specimens in 'first class condition' but noted that they were very overgrown with lesser material.
Now even more overgrown, but the collection is supervised by Uel Henderson. Said to be a site for the rare Killarney fern. (Lamb & Bowe).
The village of Carrigart originally formed part of the Leitrim estates, near Mulroy House.
THE THIRD EARL was murdered in nearby Cratlagh wood, in 1878, by men from the neighbouring peninsula.
It has been claimed that the 3rd Earl's "overbearing behaviour as a landlord brought him much hatred from his tenants, Roman Catholic and Protestant alike, whom he evicted with equal enthusiasm".
Former town residence ~ 44 Grosvenor Gardens, London.
First published in August, 2011. Leitrim arms courtesy of European Heraldry.