Tuesday, 8 August 2017

McCorkell of Ballyarnett

The family of McCORKELL springs from the Clan McCorquodale, in Scotland, as indicated by the armorial bearings.

The Clan McCorquodale's traditional lands where west of Loch Awe, Argyllshire, and the Baron McCorquodales were the clan chiefs.

The clans MacLeod of the Lewis and Gunn claim variations of this surname as septs of theirs.

ARCHIBALD McKORKLE or McCORKLE, of East Kilpatrick, Dunbartonshire, born in 1676, married, in 1698, Marrion Findlay, and had issue,

ARCHIBALD McCORKLE, of Wester Common, Glasgow, born in 1698, who wedded, in 1726, Elizabeth Millar, and had issue,
Archibald;
John;
James;
WILLIAM, of whom hereafter;
Marion.
The fourth son,

WILLIAM McCORKLE (1728-95), of Dunbartonshire, settled in Ulster and married Margaret, daughter of Councillor Gybson, of Coshquin, and had issue, 
WILLIAM, his heir;
Archibald;
Jane; Eliza; Margaret.
He changed the spelling of his surname to McCORKELL.

Mr McCorkell founded William McCorkell & Company in Londonderry, 1778, which operated The McCorkell Line (Shipping), principally carrying passengers from Ireland, Scotland and England to the Americas.

Notably the McCorkell Line carried many emigrants who were fleeing the Great Irish Famine, 1845–50.

They sailed some of the most prominent ships of the Western Ocean Ticket, and their most famous ship was the ‘Minnehaha’, named from the William Longfellow poem ‘The Song of Hiawatha’, and known as the ‘Green Yacht from Derry’.

He was succeeded by his elder son,

WILLIAM McCORKELL (1772-1836), of Elagh, County Donegal, Chairman, William McCorkell & Company, who wedded, in 1799 (at St Columb’s Cathedral, Londonderry), Jane, daughter of ________  Corscadden, of County Donegal, and had issue,
Arthur;
James;
Marcus;
Archibald, of Glengalliagh, father of
MAJOR HENRY JOHN McCORKELL DL;
BARTHOLOMEW, of whom we treat;
William;
Fanny; Margaret; Jane.
The only surviving son,

BARTHOLOMEW McCORKELL JP (1805-87), of Richmond, Londonderry, High Sheriff of County Londonderry, 1878, married, in 1843, Frances, third daughter of David Browne, of Ballyarnett, County Londonderry, and had issue,
DAVID BROWNE, his heir;
William Foster (1849-65);
Bartholomew Herbert;
James Browne;
Jane Augusta; Margaret Fitzgerald; Annie Kincaid;
Fannie Evelyn, MBE; Mary Elizabeth; Ada Langley.
Mr McCorkell was Alderman of the Londonderry Corporation, 1847, Mayor of Londonderry, 1859–62, First President of Londonderry Chamber of Commerce; served on the Board of Londonderry Port and Harbour Commissioners for 31 years; Chairman 1871-72, Wm McCorkell & Co Ltd, Committee Derry Races (Ballyarnett Racecourse).

The eldest son,

DAVID BROWNE McCORKELL JP DL (1845-97), of Ballyarnett, County Londonderry (to which he succeeded on the death of his uncle, James Browne, in 1881), Barrister-at-law, Crown Prosecutor of County Tyrone, Honorary Secretary, Derry and Strabane Hunt Steeplechases (Ballyarnett Racecourse), wedded, in 1882, Evelyn Georgina Harriet, eldest daughter of Thomas Samuel Pakenham JP, of Glen Oak, County Antrim, and had issue,
Dudley Evelyn Bruce (Sir), Knight, MBE JP DL, of Ballyarnett;
BARRY FRANCIS, of whom hereafter;
Doris Marie, of Wren Cottage, Culmore.
The younger son,

BARRY FRANCIS McCORKELL DL (1889-1957), of Templeard, Culmore, County Londonderry, married, in 1918, Eileen Mary, elder daughter of Sir Francis Henry Miller, of Hinton, Londonderry (Mayor of Londonderry, 1901–2), and had issue,
Barry Henry;
MICHAEL WILLIAM, of whom we treat;
Patrick Evelyn (Major), TD DL.
Mr McCorkell was Captain, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, Managing Director, Alex Wilson & Co, Director, William McCorkell & Co, Chairman, Londonderry Port and Harbour Commissioners, Chairman, Londonderry Gaslight Company.

The second son,

COLONEL SIR MICHAEL WILLIAM McCORKELL KCVO OBE TD JP
(1925-2006), of Ballyarnett, County Londonderry, Lord-Lieutenant of County Londonderry, 1975-2000, who married, in 1950, Aileen Allen, OBE (1975), second daughter of Lieutenant-Colonel Ernest Brabazon Booth DSO, of Darver Castle, Dundalk, County Louth, and had issue,
John Barry Ernest, b 1952;
David William, DL, b 1955;
Barry Michael, b 1959;
Mary Aileen, b 1951.

BALLYARNETT HOUSE, Londonderry, is a Victorian house in the Neo-Georgian style which incorporates a 17th century, single-storey cottage, said to date from the Siege of Derry.

The present house was probably enlarged and built for James Corscadden ca 1860; and later acquired through marriage by the McCorkells.


The present owner acquired the property in the early 1990s and refurbished the premises.


The single-storey canted bays on the main facade were removed; adding three dormer windows and a projecting, flat-roofed portico; thus altering the appearance from mid-Victorian style to that of Georgian.

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