Thursday, 8 July 2021

Scott of Willsboro'


THE REV GIDEON SCOTT, Oxford, went over to Ulster as Chaplain in WILLIAM III's army in 1688, and purchased the Willsboro' estate, 1696.

He married Jane, daughter of Robert McNeill, of Ballintoy, County Antrim, by Margaret his wife, daughter of Sir John Ruthven, and widow of Sir Dugald Stuart Bt.

Mr Scott died in 1724, leaving (with two daughters, Anne and Jane) an only son,

WILLIAM SCOTT (1705-76), of Willsborough, County Londonderry, for many years Recorder, and MP for Londonderry City, 1739-59, Prime Sergeant, Judge of the King's Bench, and eventually a Baron of the Exchequer.

He married Hannah, daughter of THOMAS GLEDSTANES, and had issue,
Thomas, Recorder of Londonderry, 1765; d 1770;
JAMES, of whom presently;
Anthony, died 1770.
The second son,

JAMES SCOTT (1745-1820), of Willsboro', wedded, in 1779, Catherine Elizabeth, daughter of the Rt Rev James Leslie, Lord Bishop of Limerick, and sister of Sir Edward Leslie, 1st Baronet, of Tarbert House, County Kerry, and had issue,
William, died 1803-4;
THOMAS, his heir;
Edward, a major in the army;
George (Rev), Rector of Banagher;
James Leslie Montgomery (Rev), Chancellor of Down, Rector of Portaferry;
Joice, m R Ogilby, of Pellipar;
Hannah; Mary Anne Martha; Jane.
Mr Scott was succeeded by his second son,

THOMAS SCOTT JP DL (1783-1872), of Willsboro', High Sheriff of County Londonderry, 1844, Lieutenant, Bengal Army, Brigade Major of Yeomanry, Ireland, who espoused firstly, in 1823, Hannah, widow of John Campbell, of Limavady.

He wedded secondly, in 1827, Anne Monaghan; and thirdly, in 1844, Katharine Elizabeth, eldest daughter of the REV THOMAS RICHARDSON, of Somerset, near Coleraine, County Londonderry.

Major Scott had issue by his second wife,
James, died 1846;
WILLIAM EDWARD, of whom hereafter;
Thomas Lucas (Rev);
Charles Stewart (Rt Hon Sir), GCB, GCMG;
Henry Richardson;
Elizabeth; Hannah; Annette; Hatton Thomasina; Katharine Emily; Jane B.
The eldest surviving son,

WILLIAM EDWARD SCOTT JP DL (1833-1913), of Willsboro', High Sheriff of County Londonderry, 1857, Captain and Honorary Major, Londonderry Militia, married, in 1861, Catherine Georgina, daughter of the Ven Alexander Stuart, Archdeacon of Ross, and had issue,
Thomas George Stuart, died in 1868;
Anne Frances Emily.
Major Scott's daughter,

KATHERINE ELIZABETH SCOTT (d 1934), wedded, in 1896, Edward Loftus Phillips, fourth son of Charles P Phillips, of Berkeley Cottage, Hertfordshire, and had issue,
Anne Frances Emily, d 1891.
Mrs Katherine Elizabeth Phillips & Daughter, by BM Torrens


Willsboro' seen though a wide-angled lens. Photo Credit: Tyler Collins

WILLSBOROUGH HOUSE, otherwise Willsboro', near Eglinton, County Londonderry, is a mid-19th century house of two storeys and six bays, flanked by canted, projecting bays at either end.

The roof is concealed behind a cornice and parapet.

It faces westwards across flat terrain to the river Foyle, County Londonderry.

Willsborough House (Image: © Northern Ireland Community Archive)

There is a courtyard to the rear.

The demesne dates from 1696.

A walled garden, gate lodge, and some mature trees remain.

Willsborough features in J A K Dean's Plight of the Big House in Northern Ireland.


In 1735, the Londonderry City Corporation had set up a committee to find an economical way of furnishing the poor of the city with heating fuel.

They agreed to contract William Scott of Willsborough, near Eglinton, to supply turf to the city. 

The lands of Willsborough were originally deep flat bog and the Scotts reclaimed this bog, over the next one hundred years, by constructing canals and shipping turf to the city’s quay.

From 1746, William Scott agreed to supply the city annually, for 21 years, 32,000 barrels of turf at 1½ pence per barrel.

The Corporation also agreed to pay Mr Scott an additional £50 per annum if he supplied the quota of 32,000 barrels.

First published in June, 2015.


Northern Scrivener said...

After the Scotts left the house and home farm I believe that a farmer by the name of George Fulton owned it. Thereafter I think that the house was owned/rented/occupied by DuPont and that their visiting American executives stayed there.

Anonymous said...


I have a lots information of Charles Palmer Phillips.He was a father of Edward Loftus Phillips.I do have a silhoutte of Charles Palmer Phillips as a child together with his parents.Charles' father was William Edward Phillips,governor of Penang from (1819-1824).

Best regards,
Winson Saw

Demetrius said...

There is an obscure puzzle to which there may not be an answer. In the mid 18th Century I have a Rev. Ralph Sneyd 1717-1787 who married a Mary Gordon and in 1752, give or take a year or two, they have a son the later Rev. Wettenhall Sneyd, and the place given is Willsborough.

This Ralph is of the family of Sneyd of Ashcombe of Staffs a branch of the Sneyd's of Keele, also of that County and their estate is now the University.

These Sneyd's arrived in Ireland via the marriage of one to Sarah Wettenhall, cousin to Bishop Edward Wettenhall, who married a Sneyd, whose memorial in Westminster Abbey looks over to the bust of Robert Burns across the grave of Sheridan.

What was the Rev. Ralph doing at Willsborough? Might be have been a chaplain, or at a parish nearby and was this Mary Gordon one of the prominent local Gordon's? His son later turns up in Hampshire adjacent to the Austen's, involved with Sheridan and then a son-in-law, a Brooke of Brookeborugh, was Deputy Commander of the British force that set fire to Washington DC of the USA in 1814.

An interesting family on the whole.

Josh said...

Where abouts near Eglinton is this?

Timothy Belmont said...

It's at Campsie, or near it.

Tim Scott said...

Hi Demetrius
This is likely to be the Gordon family of Florida Manor.
Dorothea Josephine Gisbourne Gordon, a great granddaughter of Robert Gordon of Florida Manor, 1722-1793, married James Edward Scott, M.D., Deputy Surgeon-General, 7 Jun 1873.
James Edward Scott was a son of the Rev. James Leslie Montgomery Scott, Rector of Drumbeg Parish Church and later Chancellor of Down Cathedral.
Rev. James Leslie Montgomery Scott was a great grandson of Gideon Scott, the Chaplin from Oxford who settled in Willsborough, Co. Londonderry.
Rev. Ralph Sneyd’s mother was Barbara Marsh, a great granddaughter of Jeremiah Taylor, Bishop of Down Connor and Dromore, and his wife Joanna Brydges, a natural daughter of Charles I and a Miss Brydges. Ralph’s granddaughter, Harriet Sneyd, married the Persian Interpreter, Major Turner McCann, or Macan, who’s parents both died at Mount Panther, Co. Down, and were the great grandparents of Prime Minister, Alexander Frederick Douglas-Home, XIV Earl Home.
Another great granddaughter of Major Turner McCann and Harriet Sneyd, the Hon, Fenella Hepburn-Stuart-Forbes-Trefusis, married the Queen Mother’s brother, the Hon. John Herbert Bowes-Lyon, and their daughter, Anne Ferelith Fenella Bowes-Lyon, became a Princess when she married Georg Valdemar Karl Axel Zurich Schleswig-Holstin-Sonderburg-Glucksburg, Prince of Denmark in 1950.
I you find out any further information about the Rev. Ralph I would be interested hear about it.

Unknown said...

Hi Timothy cud u email me so I can send you an attachment picture of a welcome dated June 1913. A welcome addressed to John Russell Scott Esqr from the tenants of Willsboro Estate. I dont know how to send it to your Blog. Thankyou Michelle Gilmour O'Kane..

Timothy Belmont said...

Michelle, I can be emailed at

James Hart said...

Hi Tim,There is a Scott family grave in St Cancies graveyard Eglinton.A very impressive structure in a state of neglect.In light of what Scott family did in building extension to the Church.,I would like to ask Church Pastor if it could be kept in manner deserving of such a generous family.Would such a gesture meet with your approval?James Hart.

Timothy Belmont said...

James, I find nothing more interesting than exploring old graveyards and discovering the graves of families like the Scotts. Indeed, I think your idea sounds good.

Timothy Belmont said...

James, I wondered if you could take a few photos of the Scott grave? Many thanks.

Anonymous said...

Tim, I sent pics to e mail address but returned.any other way I can contact you

Timothy Belmont said...