Friday, 20 May 2016

Stephenstown House

THE FAMILY OF FORTESCUE WERE MAJOR LANDOWNERS IN COUNTY LOUTH, WITH 5,262 ACRES

This is a cadet branch of the FORTESCUES of Drumiskin (from whom descended the EARLS OF CLERMONT, and the BARONS CLERMONT and CARLINGFORD).

WILLIAM FORTESCUE, of Newrath, County Louth, younger son of SIR THOMAS FORTESCUE, of Dromiskin, married Margaret, daughter and heiress of Nicholas Gernon, of Milltown, County Louth.

He died in 1734, leaving, with other issue, a third son,

CAPTAIN MATTHEW FORTESCUE, Royal Navy, who wedded, in 1757, Catherine Doogh, and had (with a daughter, Catherine) a son,

MATHEW FORTESCUE, of Stephenstown, who espoused Mary Anne, eldest daughter of John McClintock MP, of Drumcar, and had issue,
MATHEW, his heir;
Anna Maria; Harriet; Emily.
The only son,

MATHEW FORTESCUE DL (1791-1845), of Stephenstown, married, in 1811, Catherine Eglantine, eldest daughter of Colonel Blair MP, of Blair, and had issue,
Mathew Charles, died in infancy;
JOHN CHARLES WILLIAM, his heir;
Frederick Richard Norman, father of
MATTHEW CHARLES EDWARD;
William Hamilton;
Clermont Mathew Augustus.
Mr Mathew Fortescue was succeeded by his son,

JOHN CHARLES WILLIAM FORTESCUE JP DL (1822-91), of Stephenstown, and Corderry, Lieutenant-Colonel, RA; High Sheriff, 1861; Vice Lord-Lieutenant of County Louth, 1868-79.

Colonel Fortescue wedded, in 1857, Geraldine Olivia Mary Anne, daughter of the Rev Frederick Pare, by the Hon Geraldine de Ros his wife.

He dsp in 1891, when he was succeeded by his nephew,

MATTHEW CHARLES EDWARD FORTESCUE JP DL (1861-1914), of Stephenstown, High Sheriff, 1903, Major, 6th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles, who wedded, in 1894, Edith Magdalen, eldest daughter of Sir Charles Arthur Fairlie-Cunninghame Bt, in an issueless marriage.

*****

After the death of Mrs Pike-Fortescue in 1966, Stephenstown was inherited  by her nephew, Major Digby Hamilton, who sold it about 1974.


STEPHENSTOWN HOUSE, near Dundalk, County Louth, was a square Georgian house of two storeys over a basement, five bays long and five bays deep.

The house was extended in 1820 by the addition of two wings of one storey over the basement.

One of these wings was demolished later in the 19th century.

At some time in the earlier part of the 19th Century the windows were given Tudor-Revival hood mouldings, but later the house was refaced with cement and the hood mouldings replaced by classical pediments and entablatures.


Alas, the once-great mansion is now ruinous.

Although neglected in recent years, Stephenstown House continues to play a vital role in its surroundings.

It is located on the highest point in the locality dominating the skyline and providing a point of drama in the landscape.

The outlying buildings are in fair condition and their survival contributes further to Stephenstown's significance.

The house became ruinous by the 1980s.

Abandoned Ireland has an interesting article about it here.

Other former seat ~ Wymondham Cottage, Oakham, Rutland.

First published in March, 2012.

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