Wednesday, 5 September 2018

Menlough Castle

THE BLAKE BARONETS OWNED 2,030 ACRES OF LAND IN COUNTY GALWAY

The founder of this family in Ireland, Richard Blake, alias Caddell, is said to have accompanied Prince (afterwards King) JOHN into that kingdom, 1185, and obtained for his military services large grants of land in the counties of Galway, Mayo, Clare, and in the town of Galway.

VALENTINE BLAKE (1560-1635), married firstly, Margaret, daughter of Robert French, and had, with other issue,
THOMAS, his heir;
Margaret.
He wedded secondly, Annabel, daughter of James Lynch, without further issue.

Mr Blake, Mayor of Galway, MP for Galway, was created a baronet in 1622, denominated of Menlough, County Galway.

Sir Valentine was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR THOMAS BLAKE, 2nd Baronet, MP for Galway Borough, 1645-5, Mayor of Galway, 1637, who espoused Julianne, daughter of Geoffrey Browne, and was father of

SIR VALENTINE BLAKE, 3rd Baronet, of Menlough Castle, MP for County Galway, 1634-5, Galway Borough, 1639-42, Mayor of Galway, 1643, who wedded Eleanor, daughter of Sir Henry Lynch Bt, and had issue,
THOMAS, his successor;
Francis;
John;
Henry;
Julianne; Elizabeth; Annabel.
Sir Valentine died in 1652, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR THOMAS BLAKE, 4th Baronet, who married firstly, in 1649, Mary, daughter of Richard Martin; and secondly, in 1656, Maria, daughter of Robert French, by whom he had issue,
VALENTINE, 5th Baronet;
WALTER, 6th Baronet.
Sir Thomas died ca 1670, and was succeeded by his elder son,

SIR VALENTINE BLAKE, 5th Baronet (1664-86), who fell in a duel, and leaving no issue, the title devolved upon his only brother,

SIR WALTER BLAKE, 6th Baronet, who was the first Catholic gentleman of distinction who joined the standard of the Prince of Orange, and obtained a commission from His Royal Highness to raise a regiment, which he maintained and clothed at his own expense.

Sir Walter, MP for Galway, 1689, wedded firstly, in 1687, Anne, daughter of Sir John Kirwan, and had, with other issue,
THOMAS, his successor;
Mary.
He espoused secondly, in 1706, Agnes, daughter of John Blake, and had further issue, a daughter, Catherine.

Sir Walter died in 1748, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR THOMAS BLAKE, 7th Baronet, of Somerville, County Galway, who married, in 1716, Elizabeth, daughter of Ulick Burke, and had issue,
ULICK, his successor;
Anne.
Sir Thomas died in 1749, and was succeeded by his son,

SIR ULICK BLAKE, 8th Baronet, who wedded Mary, daughter of Richard Blake, though the marriage was without issue.

Sir Ulick died in 1766, when the title passed to his cousin,

SIR THOMAS BLAKE, 9th Baronet, who espoused, in 1730, Eleanor Lynch, though the marriage was without issue, and the title passed to his brother,

SIR WALTER BLAKE, 10th Baronet, who wedded, in 1751, Barbara, daughter of Myles Burke, and had issue,
JOHN, his successor;
Dominick Joseph;
Stephen;
Thomas;
Walter (Brigadier).
Sir Walter died in 1802, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR JOHN BLAKE, 11th Baronet (1753-1834), who married firstly, in 1779, Eleanor, daughter of Edward Lynch, and had issue,
VALENTINE, his successor;
Barbara.
He espoused secondly, in 1800, Rose, daughter of Edward Brice, of Kilroot, County Antrim, by his wife Theodora, daughter of Thomas , 1st Baron Ventry, and had further issue,
John Brice;
Eliza; Jane Margaret; Arabella.
Sir John was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR VALENTINE BLAKE, 12th Baronet (1780-1847), MP for Galway, 1813-20 and 1841-7, who wedded firstly, in 1803, Eliza, daughter of Joseph Donellan, and had issue,
THOMAS EDWARD, his successor;
John Francis;
Elly; Eleanor; Eliza.
He married secondly, in 1843, Julia Sophia, daughter of Robert MacDonnell, and had further issue, a son,
Valentine Charles.
Sir Valentine was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR THOMAS EDWARD BLAKE, 13th Baronet (1805-75), who espoused, in 1830, Lætitia Maria, daughter of Ulick O'Brien, and had issue,
VALENTINE, his successor;
Louisa; Eliza Maria.
Sir Thomas was succeeded by his son,

SIR VALENTINE BLAKE, 14th Baronet (1836-1912), JP, High Sheriff of County Galway, 1872, Honorary Major, Galway Militia, who wedded, in 1864, Camilla Eugenia, daughter of Harvey Combe, and had issue,
THOMAS PATRICK ULICK JOHN HARVEY, his successor;
Valentine Joseph;
James Herbert;
Florence Anne; Maude Julia.
Sir Thomas was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR THOMAS PATRICK ULICK JOHN HARVEY BLAKE, 15th Baronet (1870-1925), JP, Captain, Royal Garrison Artillery, who espoused, in 1903, Evelyn winifred, daughter of Lewes Arthur Stewart, and had issue, an only child,

SIR ULICK TEMPLE BLAKE, 16th Baronet (1904-63), Lieutenant, Royal Artillery, who married, in 1940, Betty, daughter of Arthur Gordon, and had issue, an only child,
THOMAS RICHARD VALENTINE, his successor.
Sir Ulick was found dead in his car after inheriting Menlough Castle.

He was succeeded by his son,

SIR THOMAS RICHARD VALENTINE BLAKE, 17th Baronet (1942-2008).
Sir Anthony Teilo Bruce Blake, 18th Baronet (1951–2014), great-great-great-great grandson of the 10th Baronet through his 2nd son, Dominck Joseph Blake (1754–1843);
Sir Charles Valentine Bruce Blake, 19th baronet (b 1994).

MENLOUGH CASTLE, County Galway, was originally a gabled 17th century tower-house on the bank of the river Corrib, two miles from Galway City.


The building had several additions and extensions during the 19th century, in including battlements, curvilinear gables, Georgian sashes etc.


In July, 1910, the castle was gutted by a catastrophic fire, in which a daughter of the 14th Baronet perished.

Menlough Castle was thereafter abandoned and has remained a ruin since then.

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