Turtle Bunbury

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FAMILY

LISNAVAGH

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Above: Benjamin Bunbury (1642-1707), courtesy of Camilla Corrie of Leighton Hall, Shropshire, England.

BENJAMIN BUNBURY (1642-1707)
of KILLERIG, COUNTY CARLOW

St. Mary's Church, by Castle Street in Carlow Town boasts the oldest burial-ground in the town. [1.a] The graveyard's third oldest surviving tomb is a slab in memory of Benjamin Bunbury, of Killerig, Co. Carlow, who died on 3 April 1707, aged 64. Benjamin is traditionally said to be the first of our family to settle in Ireland.

The family connection to Lisnavagh began on 13 March 1669, over 350 years ago, when he leased 512 acres at Tobinstown in the barony of Rathvilly, County Carlow, from Richard Butler, Earl of Arran, for the lifetime of himself and his family at £68 per year. It seems likely Benjamin bought Killerrig with money he inherited following his father’s death in December 1668.

Benjamin was the son of Thomas Bunbury (1606-1668), son of Sir Henry Bunbury, Knight, of Stanney, in Cheshire, England, by his second wife, Martha Norris.

Benjamin and his wife Mary had five sons - Joseph, of Johnstown; Benjamin, of Killerrig; Thomas of Clogna; William, of Lisnevagh and Moyle, all in County Carlow; and Matthew, of Killfeacle, Co. Tipperary - and a daughter, Diana.

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ROUNDHEADS VERSUS CAVALIERS

Aside from the connection to Sir William Stanley and Lismore Castle in the Elizabethan Age, I had always assumed that the Bunbury family did not take root in Ireland until the mid-1660s when Benjamin settled at Killerig, County Carlow. My theory was that some of the family took flight in the wake of the English Civil War in which Sir Henry Benjamin Bunbury (1597-1664), his father's half-brother, was thrown in prison and had his house burned down on account of his support for Charles I. Benjamin was thought to have arrived in Ireland at the time of the Restoration, while his older brother Thomas headed to Virginia. However, some members of the family were in Carlow from at least 1652, and they appear to have favoured the dastardly Cromwell over the House of Stuart. [See here for more]

One has to bear in mind that the Bunbury’s were also close cousins of Sir Arthur Aston (1590-1649), an ally of the Earl of Ormonde, who was governor of Drogheda when Cromwell’s army laid waste to the port in 1649; after Drogheda fell, Sir Arthur was hideously murdered with his own wooden leg by Parliamentarian soldiers convinced it was full of gold.

 

 

 

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Above: It's always nice to be surprised when you are researching your family history. I did not realise Benjamin
Bunbury's grave was still extant until the Rev David White, rector of St Mary's, emailed me a photograph of it in
January 2020. It's just inside the main gate, on the right, broken into three slabs but still legible.

The inscription reads:

'In hopes of a blessed resurrection here lyeth the bodies of Benjamin Bunbury the father and
Benjamin Bunbury the son, both of Killerig, Esqs.
The former departed this life April ye 4th 1707 aged 64 years.
The latter January ye 3 1715 aged 39.'

UNCIVIL CHILDHOOD

Benjamin was one of ten children, four sons and six daughters, born to Thomas Bunbury, by his second wife, Eleanor Birkenhead. Most of his siblings did not survive childbirth. His paternal grandparents were Sir Henry Bunbury and Lady Martha Bunbury (nee Norris). Benjamin was the elder twin of his brother Joseph; Ormerod records their baptism at Stanney in Cheshire on 13 September 1642, just over three weeks after the English Civil War broke out between supporters of Parliament (and by extension the Scots) and the House of Stuart (behind whom most Irish Catholics would rally).

The outbreak of the Civil War evidently played havoc with the family. Sir Henry, his father's Royalist half-brother, was thrown in gaol; his house and lands were burned. And yet Thomas Bunbury may have batted for Cromwell.

At the height of Cromwell's Republic, Benjamin's oldest brother, another Thomas, his senior by nine years, moved to Virginia where became a tobacco baron and ancestor to the Bumbreys, one of the oldest black families in the United States today.

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THE MOVE TO IRELAND

It is not yet known when Benjamin or his twin brother Joseph moved to Ireland; their great-grandfather Thomas Bunbury was connected to Lismore Castle in Tudor times. Their uncle George had been there since the 1630s while another uncle, John Bunbury became Clerk of the Crown & Peace in Wexford in 1644 and founded a branch at Ballyseskin. Benjamin's aunts Elizabeth (b. 1595) and Anne, were married to John Richardson, Bishop of Ardagh, and Sir John Keningham, both key players in the new post-Elizabethan Ireland. (1c) John's half-brother Henry Benjamin Bunbury (1597-1664), was stripped of his title and lands for supporting the Royalist cause during Cromwell's dictatorship in the 1650s. While his sons remained in England, Henry's nephews followed a growing trend and emigrated.

In 1666, Joseph married Hannah Desmineers (or Desminiere) of Dublin. This provides an intriguing link with one of the first Huguenot families to achieve prominence in Dublin, having settled in Ireland in the 1630s. By the time Joseph married Hannah, they had established a powerful business empire, mostly concerning real estate and alcoholic beverages. Jean Desminières became the Lord Mayor of Dublin in 1666 and his brother Louis Desminières did likewise in 1669: these could feasibly have been Hannah's father and brother. Desminières lived over his tavern “The Sign of the Sugar Loaf” in Bridge Street. Gimlette’s The History of the Huguenot Settlers in Ireland' records that he was a sheriff of Dublin during the Commonwealth and enjoyed much of the confidence of Oliver Cromwell’s son Henry Cromwell, who had been appointed as Governor of Ireland. Jean Desminière’s political volte-face must have been convincing for him to become lord mayor of Dublin just 6 years after the Restoration.” [i] Althouh he is said to have returned to England in later life, it seems likely this was the Joseph Bunbury who was administrator to John Robinson when the latter claimed a £120 mortgage on a portion of Patrick Wall's lands at Pollardstown (Pollacton), just east of Carlow Town, in 1684. Ryan’s History of Carlow has the following data on p. 153:

CLAIMANT: Jos Bunbury, gent., administrator of John Robinson.
ESTATE OF INTERESTS CLAIMED: £120 mortgage
BY WHAT DEED OR WRITING: By lease and release dated 23rd and 25th April 1684 to the intestate / Witnesses James Hay &c.
ON WHAT LANDS: Pollardstown bar. Catherlogh.
LATE PROPRIETOR: Patrick Wall.
NOTES: Dismissed for non pros.

Confusingly, there was also a Thomas Bunbury who claimed part of Dudley Bagenal's land in Myshall in 1684:

CLAIMANT: Tho. Bunbury, gent.
ESTATE OF INTERESTS CLAIMED: Residue of 99 years subject to redemption on payment of £60
BY WHAT DEED OR WRITING: By lease dated the 5th March 1685 Witnesses Mary Bunbury &c.
ON WHAT LANDS: Moyshell [sic, aka Myshall), barony of Forth
LATE PROPRIETOR: Dudley Bagnall
NOTES: Dismissed for non pros.

I am unsure who this Thomas was. Benjamin's father was called Thomas Bunbury but he died in 1668, while Benjamin's son Thomas Bunbury of Cloghna and Cranavonane was born in 1673 and was thus too young to be called a gentleman in 1684. Is it possible that this was Benjamin and Joseph's older brother Thomas who sailed for Virginia in 1660? The latter's wife was notably called Mary.

Benjamin's youngest sister Diana, who married her first cousin Richard Bunbury, is said to have settled in Ireland when she married, secondly, a Mr Berib, Esq, of Co. Carlow. Two more Bunburys to note in Ireland at this point were William Bunbury who lived at Moyle, Co. Carlow, and John Bunbury (King's Inn, 18 May 1698) who lived at Lower Mortarstown in Carlow but these two need to be examined further. [ii]

 

HISTORICAL CONTEXT

1662 – Ormond becomes Lord Lieutenant and arrives in Ireland on 27 July.

1663 – (27 July) The ‘Cattle Act’ restricts Irish trade with colonies as well as exports to England.

1665 - (29 April) Birth of James Butler, 2nd Duke of Ormonde.

1672 - (15 March) First declaration of indulgence suspending penal laws against Catholics and dissenters is issued by Charles II.

1672 - (28 Sept) ‘Popish plot’ to assassinate Charles II alleged in England. Concocted by Titus Oates, the fictitious conspiracy gripped England in anti-Catholic hysteria between 1678 and 1681 and culminated in the execution of St Oliver Plunkett.

 

KILLERIG, TOBINSTOWN, JAMES WALL & LORD ARRAN

The Down Survey of 1655-1656 indicates that the 'papist proprietor' of Killerrig at that time was James Wall, a kinsman of Ulick Wall of Johnstown and William Wall of Urglin, whose 489 acres of arable farmland are thought to have been centred upon a castle at Killerig. This is shown on the survey alongside an adjoining church and a ‘tentative' street with five houses. See first image here. (William Nolan, County Carlow 1641-1660: Geography, Landownership & Society’, in Carlow: History & Society, edited by Thomas King, p. 368.) Perhaps James was disposessed for his role in the Confederate Wars. He is thought to have been a son of Edward Wall, one of the rebel commanders who lead the siege of Carlow Castle in 1641. (See here for more on the Wall family)

In 1669, shortly after the death of his father in England, Benjamin Bunbury obtained lands at Killerig in the parish of Nurney in County Carlow. It is thought the farm was near Killerig Cross, on the east side of the road from the old Knights Templar preceptory (which had been granted by Queen Elizabeth to the Aylmer family in 1590). [For details of the Knights Templar connection, see Appendix A below.] It is thought the house may have been on the site of a farm run by the late Jack Balding’s, which is the first on the left as you set off for Hackestown/Rathvilly from Walsh’s. I made a vague pilgrimage to this site in January 2015 and it appears to be a cattle farm with a largely concrete base. However, there were a number of small fields which, to my mind, seemed somewhat 17th century while I presume the stunning view of Keadeen and the Wicklow Mountains was the same view that Benjamin beheld 346 years earlier. In the patent rolls of Charles II, enrolled on 15 November 1669, Killerig is described as ‘a castle, messuage, mill and lands [of Killerick, measuring 489 acres.’. Together with 81 acres at nearby Ardenhugh, that made 923 acres, one rood and nine perches, which seemingly belonged to Philip, Lord Wharton, and was rented for £11, 10 shillings and ten pence half-penny annually. [For details of the Wharton family, see Appendix B below]

Benjamin was already described as 'of Killerig, Co. Catherlogh' by 13 March 1669 when the 27-year-old Englishman took a lease on 512 acres at Tobinstown in the barony of Rathvilly, County Carlow, from Richard Butler, Earl of Arran, for the lifetime of himself and his family at £68 per year. This is taken to be the start of our family connection to Lisnavagh, over 350 years ago, although the earliest date I have managed to pin on the Bunbury link to 'Lisnavagh' itself (as of June 2019) is 1676. It seems likely that these leases were connected to the deaths of Sir Robert Meredith and his son Sir William in 1668 and 1669 respectively. Sir Robert, one of Black Tom Wentworth's sidekicks, had held the land in Rathvilly since 1633. [See Meredith section here for more.]

The original leases on both Lisnavagh and Tobinstown were granted to Benjamin by the Earl of Arran in 1676. Perhaps he had come into more money with the death of his mother Eleanor (nee Birkenhead) in 1675. The Earl of Arran at this time was Richard Butler (1639-1686), the fifth and youngest son of the Great Duke of Ormonde. In May 1662, following his father's immense role in securing the Restoration of Charles II, Richard was created Baron of Cloughrenan, Viscount Tullow and Earl of Arran in the Peerage of Ireland. Educated at Oxford, Lord Arran distinguished himself during his short life by being one of the courageous minority who denounced the Popish Plot as bogus and during a two year spell as Lord Deputy of Ireland (1682-1686), in which he helped extinguish a serious fire in Dublin Castle. When he leased Killerig and Tobinstown to Benjamin in 1669, he was married to Mary Stuart, a daughter of the Duke of Lennox, but the marriage was childless and she died at about this time. In 1673 he married Dorothy Ferrers, with whom he had three sons and a daughter; none of his sons survived childhood. According to Gramont, Lord Arran ‘played well at tennis and on the guitar, and was pretty successful in gallantry.’ (Cokayne, The Complete Peerage, Vol. 1, p. 226] He was stricken with pleurisy in January 1685 (1687?) and was buried in Westminster Abbey. Following his death without issue, his titles became extinct. They were revived once more in 1693 for his nephew, Charles Butler, a brother of the 2nd Duke of Ormonde, who had his country residence at Richmond Lodge in London. In 1721, Charles, Lord Arran, was enabled by an Act passed in the Irish Parliament to buy from the Crown a good deal of the Irish property of his brother, the attainted Duke. It was Charles who sold Tobisntown to Joseph Bunbury and William Pendred in 1723. He died without male issue in 1758 and those titles became extinct again. [For more on the Ormonde conneciton, see Appendix C below.]

On 16 June 1683, Benjamin leased the 'mill-lands' at Tobinstown to a Catholic soldier named John Baggott [aka Baggett], who was later attainted for serving the Catholic King James II. Many of Baggott's Carlow estates were acquired in 1702 by the Right Honourable Philip Savage, Chancellor of the Exchequer in Ireland. Of relevance is this petition from the MPs and gentlemen of Co Carlow, including two of Benjamin Bunbury's sons, Joseph and Thomas:

'1701 April 16, Carlow. We, the High Sheriff, Justices of Peace, Grand Jury and others, Protestant gentry and inhabitants of the said county, whose names are hereunto subscribed, do unanimously and with one accord, make it our humble and earnest request to the Most Noble James Duke of Ormonde his Grace that he will please in favour of us, and all other the Protestants in this county, as much as in his Grace lies, to obstruct and discountenance Mark Baggot, a violent Papist, son of John Baggot, late of Mount Arron, in this county, from returning to reside, or have his abode among us; the said Mark having been titular High Sheriff of this county in the year 1689 and acted as such with that unsufferable pride, rigour and insolence toward the Protestants here, as will never be forgot; wherefore as his neighbourhood will be unwelcome to all, so will it bring a terror and heartburning to the poorer sort especially, for whose sake as well as our own we make this our humble request to his Grace. Pierce Butler, Jeff. Paul, Robt. Harris, Jere. Rydalle, Jos. Bunbury, Thos. Bunbury, Mau. Warren, Arthur Hardy, Laur. Potts, Ralph Chritchly, Thos. Conyers, John Bernard, cum sociis, John Browne, Urban Vigors, John Beauchamp, Tho. Hardye, Charles Bernard , Ed. Hunt, John Cooper, Sam . Curtis , John Wright , Thos. Burdett , vice-com., Tho. Butler, Wm. Tench, Went . Harman, John Beauchamp, senr., Jo. Reynolds, Jo. Allen.'

In 1723, the fee farm of 'the town and lands of Tobinstowne (except the Mill & Lands thereto bef.)' was sold to William Pendred of Broghillstowne and Joseph Bunbury of Fryanstowne & Johnstown for £2665.

 

 

 

THE MARRIAGE TO MISS SHEPPERD

In 1669, the same year he took up the lease on Killerig and Tobinstown, Benjamin Bunbury married Mary Shepperd (sometimes Sheapheard and Shepherd). [iii] She is generally assumed to have been the daughter and heir of Philip Shepherd, Esq, of Killerig so it is entirely possible that Benjamin met her in County Carlow, rather than bringing her with him from England. She is also thought to have been a sister of Mathew Shephard, who died in 1664.

Mary was previously married to Charles Bernard, by whom she had three sons, Thomas [who married Deborah Sheapeard], John and Phillip Bernard. Given that her eldest son Thomas Bernard was born in about 1665, it seems reasonable to suppose that Mary was born circa 1642-1646 and married Charles Bernard circa 1664. [iv] Thomas, John and Philip Bernard were thus older half-brothers to the five Bunbury boys, namely William, Joseph, Thomas, Benjamin and Mathew, as well as Diana [later Barnes]. Their kinship is emphasised by "A Memorial of the last will and testament of Thomas Bernard late of Clonmulske in the County of Catherlough Esq. bearing date and published the Twenty Fifth day of February one thousand seven hundred and twenty Whereby among other things he bequeathed unto his dearly beloved wife Debora Bernard the yearly rents accruing out of the towne and lands of Ballypicas and Clarbarracun in the Queen’s County as they are xxxxx set during her natural life he likewise bequeathed unto his said wife her own chamber in the house in Clonmulske aforesaid also the liberty of the kitchen of the said house with a stable therein belonging The said Thomas Bernard did by the said will devise and bequeath to his brothers Joseph Bunbury and Phillip Bernard Esqs." [The Joseph Bunbury referred to as his ‘brother’ was his half-brother Joseph Bunbury, who later settled at Johnstown.] For more on the Bernards see Hilary Jarvis website.

"Benjamin Bunbury and his wife Mary" are listed as plaintiffs to a law suit taken in the Irish Court of Chancery in 1672. [iv.a] . They are also mentioned in 1679 in the Ireland, Exchequer Court of Equity Bill Books.

In 1675, Benjamin Bunbury was one of the 27 magistrates running County Carlow under the Earl of Thomond as High Sheriff and Lord Arran. [Proclamations of Ireland, vol. 1, ed. Kelly Kelly, James, with Lyons, Mary Ann (eds) The Proclamations of Ireland 1660–1820 Volume 1: Proclamations issued during the reign of Charles II, 1660–85 (Dublin, 2014)]

Another reference from the Exchequer Court records concerns a case taken on 17th May 1680 by plaintiffs Thomas Humfrey and Mary (o/w Sheppard) his wife' against defendants: Benjamin Bunbury and Mary his wife; Ralph Sheppard; Hugh, Deborah and Jonathan Sheppard; Elizabeth Sheppard and Judith Sheppard. This suggests that Jonathan and Deborah Sheppard had a brother, Hugh Sheppard.

 

THE SIX CHILDREN OF BENJAMIN OF KILLERRIG

Benjamin and Mary/Elizabeth Bunbury had five sons and a daughter before his death in 1708.

1) Joseph Bunbury (d. 1731), settled at Johnstown, just outside Carlow town, married Hannah Hinton and was ancestor to the Bunburys of Johnstown.

2) Thomas Bunbury (d. 1743) married Rose Jackson and was ancestor to the Bunburys of Cloghna & Cranavonane.

3) William Bunbury (c. 1674-1710) settled at Lisnavagh outside Rathvilly in County Carlow and was ancestor to the Bunburys and McClintock Bunburys of Lisnavagh.

4) Matthew Bunbury (d. 1733) moved to Tipperary and was ancestor to the Bunburys of Kilfeacle, including Lord Roberts.

5) Benjamin Bunbury II inherited Killerig, served as High Sheriff of Carlow in 1713, married Hester Huband of Dublin and may have been grandfather of Charlotte Dee, mistress to the Duke of Cumberland. He died on 3 January 1715 [1716?], aged 39.

6) Diana Bunbury (d. 1728), sometimes Dyana, married Captain Thomas Barnes (d. 1710) of Grange, Co. Kilkenny. He is described on the Bunbury family tree as one of the Duke of Ormonde's officers, but elsewhere it is suggested that he was a Cromwellian officer. [2c]

 

IRISH BEEF, THE FALL OF CLARENDON & THE DUTch WARS

The aquisition of Killerig and Tobinstown takes place against the back drop of Charles II's reign. The Duke of Ormonde was Lord-Lieutenant at this time but he was having a difficult time given that the legal and political system in Ireland was so stagnant and broken. He also had to pay many of the Irish levies, including the administration, from his own pocket. He derived some relief from the export of good Irish beef to England but this came to an end in late 1666 when the Duke of Buckingham – now a jowly alcoholic in his forties, but still full of energy, boosted by his cousin Barbara Villiers sharing the king’s bed – led a successful campaign to enact the Irish Cattle Bill, halting the sale of Irish beef in England. The duke and his allies, "the Western gentlemen" (ie: the landed gentry of the North and West of England, and Wales), claimed such sales had been undercutting prices for English farmers, especially in London where there was a considerable market for Irish beef. The cost of Ireland now fell on the king’s purse and Charles II, who opposed the bill, clocked its unexpected passage (the Importation Act of 1667) as another failure by the Earl of Clarendon, his long time mentor and father-in-law to the Duke of York (later James II). Clarendon’s administration was now on the cusp of fall. Clarendon started 1667 lying in bed, riddled with gout, while having to contend with the death of two grandsons as well as his trusted sidekick, the Earl of Southampton. The Dutch destruction of the British fleet on the Medway on 13th June (the greatest naval disaster in the history of the Royal Navy) would further hasten Clarendon’s fall and a new cabal arose, led by the the hugely influential Earls of Arlington and Buckingham.

Arlington dominated from 1668 onwards and would be involved in a sly attempt by Charles II to trick the French into signing the secret Treaty of Dover. A combination of bad timing, the death of Charles's favourite sister Minette, Duchess of Orleans (an emissary from the French court) and the comedy show of Buckingham signing a second secret Treaty of London with the Sun King, lead to Charles forming an alliance with the French against the Dutch, who were now led by his young nephew, William of Orange. Charles II was a gambler. This one did not pay off and culminated in the Third Anglo-Dutch War between the Kingdom of England and the Dutch Republic, which lasted between April 1672 and early 1674. The war was a costly and fruitless failure for the English.

On 29 April 1680 the first stone of the Royal Hospital, Kilmainham was laid by the Duke of Ormond. Three months later, on 31 July 1680, the House of Ormonde was greatly shaken by the premature death of Vice-Admiral Thomas Butler, 6th Earl of Ossory, KG, PC, PC (I), the Duke's eldest son. Lord Ossory's son later succeeds as 2nd Duke.

Were the Bunburys involved in the Williamite Wars at all? Did any of them line out for William of Orange when the asthmatic Dutch king unsuccessfully laid siege to Limerick in 1690? Did any of them serve at Athlone or Aughrim or the second siege of Limerick the following year?

FOOTNOTES

[i] ‘The Berties of Grimsthorpe Castle’ by Allan Chilvers (AuthorHouse, 2010), p. 108.
[ii] The Present State of Europe, Or, The Historical and Political Mercury, Volumes 24-25 (Randal Taylor, 1713), p. 494.

 

SIGNET RINGS & FEE FARM GRANTS

Upon the death of his oldest sister Dulcibella Bunbury, aged 48, on 5 July 1686, Benjamin inherited her signet ring. One wonders where it is today.

On 20 December 1695, Benjamin Bunbury assigned the Lisnavagh lease to his third son, William Bunbury, thought to have been on account of William turning 21 years old. On 21 December 1695 - with the Winter Solstice shining on the Haroldstown Dolmen - Benjamin also assigned the lease of his Tobinstown lands to his 24-year-old son William. According to an inscription above the main staircase of Lisnavagh House (apparently etched on a relict of the original house), the first Lisnavagh House was built in 1696 - midway through the reign of William of Orange. The fee farm grant of Lisnavagh by the Duke of Ormonde was dated 22 February 1708 with Benjamin named as the grantee; the annual rent was £105.5s.4d. I believe it was granted to William Bunbury I and his heirs in fee farm indentures of lease and release dated 21 and 28 February 1708 respectively.

The Ormonde Papers include a counterpart of a fee farm grant from the 2nd Duke of Ormonde to Benjamin Bunbury of Killerrig, Co. Carlow, of 112 plantation acres of land at Martlestown, Co. Carlow, together with grazing rights at ‘Cloghgrenane’ (Clogrennane), at a yearly rent of £13 6s. 8d. An initial payment of £78 5s. was made. 23 Jun. 1702. Martlestown is not easily identiftiable but could it be Mortarstown, which lies just east of Clogrennane? [Ormonde Papers MS 48,373/10 1702, A collection of estate property deeds generated by the Butler family relating to properties in Counties Kilkenny, Tipperary and Carlow, as well as some properties in northern England (1635-c.1940), Compiled by Owen McGee, 2011]

 

TITHE SEIZURES FROM THOMAS COOPER, 1694-1695

The Carlow Meeting's record of 'Sufferings' document tithe seizures from Thomas Cooper, the first of the Quaker Coopers, who held land at Clonegah (midway between Newtown and Fenagh) from 1675 until his death in 1714. These seizures were generally for 'the use of' the priests of the parishes of Agha, Fenagh, Clody and Nurney, all neighbouring parishes. However his seizures from 1694 included 'by John Simens and his wife tithe munger and her assistants for the use of Benjamin Bunbury impropriator of the parish of Killerick twenty one lambs thirty fleeces of wool barley beard and oats all worth seven pounds’. [I guess Simens could be Simmons or Simons]. Furthermore, in 1695, 'Thomas Cooper had taken from him for tithe by Patrick Carney Thomas Bumbery Patrick Grace and Walter Evers and their assistants for the use of John Harris priest of Clody (Cloydah) and Benjamin Bumbery and Thomas Barnett impropriators for the said parish of Clody and parish of Killerick sixty five fleeces of wool thirty one lambs two loads of beard three loads of oats and wheat and one load of pease all worth eleven pounds eighteen shillings’.

John Harris must have been an Anglican 'priest' as only the Church of Ireland had the right to collect tithes; ‘priest' was used by the Quakers as a derogatory general term for church officials of other faiths.] Clody was right next to Cloghna where Benjamin Bunbury established his second son Thomas. Claims have been made that Thomas Cooper held land in other parts of Carlow, based on all of those parishes, including the parish of Killerig, which were collecting tithes from him but Tom LaPorte, who has researched this, believes it was probably just that the parish tithe collectors didn't stay within their own strict parish borders especially when it came to the easy pickings from the pacifist Friends who offered them no resistance. Confusingly, while Thomas Cooper was suffering seizures at Clonegah, four miles away his first cousin, also a Thomas Cooper, was seizing stock from John Boles at Ballintrane for the parish of Templepeter. As Tom says, ‘legal tithe seizures which were necessary under the laws of the day were just a fact of life. I abhor the human rights violations of the past, and the present, but it was the governments that put the enabling laws in place that were the offenders not the men who found their niche in which they could survive, and perhaps thrive, under that system.' (With thanks to Tom La Porte).

 

SIR RICHARD STEPHENS

JACKSON, Thomas City of Dublin. Lease of properties in By & Co Carlow, 41 years after the termination of the lease dated 8 Jun 1696 from Sir Richard STEPHENS late of Lincolns Inn to Benjamin BUNBURY late of Killerick, Co. Carlow, which will be 25 Mar 1716, £200 pa. Mention of Richard JACKSON. Will. ANNE CHAMNEY

Sir Richard Stephens (c.1630–1692) was probably the Wexford-born barrister of that name, a protege of Lord Shaftesbury, who prospered at the time of the Popish Plot and rampant anti-Catholics in 1678. Stephens acquired Ballinakill Castle, Roscrea, which he sold onwards in 1680 to Col. Charles Minchin, a former Cromwellian soldier. He was appointed a justice of the Court of King's Bench (Ireland) in 1690 but died two years later … which is 4 years before he sighed the lease with Benjamin so how does that work!!]

 

 

SIR HARRY BUNBURY, COMMISSIONER OF THE IRISH REVENUE

The Bunburys in Ireland presumably benefited from the appointment of Benjamin's cousin Sir Harry Bunbury, head of the English branch, to be Commissioner of the Revenue for Ireland during the reign of Queen Anne. Sir Henry was a close colleague of the Duke of Ormonde, the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, with whom he shared great apprehension at the prospect of the German House of Hanover occupying the British throne once Queen Anne had died. Like many of their contemporaries, they gave their support to the cause of the Old Pretender; like so many other Jacobites they discovered they had backed the wrong horse, and both men were summarily dismissed from their posts. The Bunbury allegiance to the Ormondes stood through until 1715 when, following the failure of the Jacobite Rebellion, the 2nd Duke fled into permanaent exile in France.

 

DEATH OF BENJAMIN BUNBURY OF KILLERIG

Benjamin Bunbury Senior died aged 64 on April 4 1707. He was buried at St. Mary’s Churchyard, Castle Street, Carlow. According to the Bunbury Papers in the PPP, this is the oldest recorded tombstone at Saint Mary's but a study in 2020 unearthed two older tombs, those of John Morgan (with a possible date of 1694) and Paul Sumers (1695).

In 1916, the noted historian Lord Walter FitzGerald found ‘a small fragment of a limestone slab, now placed on a Heap of stones' on which he could make out the words Killer[rig] and [Benja]min Bunbu[ry]. However, he said the remainder of the headstone had already 'quite disappeared'. It is believed the stone was moved from its original grave to make way for the building of the Frenchman's rectory for Reverend Benjamin Daillon at the western side of the churchyard. FitzGerald added that Benjamin's tomb-slab 'exists' in St. Mary’s churchyard, Castle Street, Carlow .

The inscription below, taken from Ryan, gives Benjamin Bunbury sen.'s age at death as 44 but this is surely incorrect and I have ammended it to 64.

'IN : HOPE : OF : A : BLESSED : RESURRECTION : HERE : LIETH : THE : BODIES : OF : BENJAMIN : BUNBURY : THE : FATHER : AND : BENJAMIN : BUNBURY : THE : SON : BOTH : OF : KILLERIG : ESQRS : THE : FORMER : DEPARTED : THIS : LIFE : APRIL : YE : 4TH : 1707 : AGED : 64 : YEARS : THE : LATER : JANY : YE : 3 : 1715 - 16 : AGED : 39.'

His widow Mary Bunbury (nee Sheppard) made her will, dated 7 December 1710, in which she left "the sum of £150 Stg to be divivded amongst my children as i should think fit." She is thought to have died in 1711. And yet could she be the Mary Bunbury referred to on a 1715 bill in the Chancery books, which shows the plaintiffs as John and Judith Kiege and mentions Mathew Sheppard and Thomas Bernard as respondents. The defendants include: Jonathan Sheppard; Mathew Humphrys; Benjamin, William, John and Thomas Humphrys [children of Mary (Sheppard) Humphrys a widow]; Mary Bunbury; Mathew Sheppard and Dyana (Diana) Bunbury. In any case, the record highlights the closeness of the Bunburys, Bernards, Sheppards and Humphrys in Co. Carlow.

 

 

 

*****

With thanks to the late Peter Bunbury, Michael Purcell, Jean Casey, Mathew Forde, Hilary Jarvis, Seamus & Fiona McGrath, William Bunbury, Gill Miller, Maura Mooney, Jimmy O'Toole, Chris McQuinn, the Rev David White, Johnny Couchman and MANY others.

*****

APPENDIX A - THE KNIGHTS AT KILLERIG

The name Killerig (aka Killarge, or Killerick) apparently translates as the Church of Urk, or St Tegra, and anyone so inclined can celebrate St Urk’s Day on October 27th. That said, Google has never heard of St Urk (Eric perhaps?) and St Tegra barely rates a mention either. In her article 'Medieval settlement hierarchy in Carlow and the ‘Carlow Corridor’ 1200-1550’, Linda Doran describes how Killerrig was also known as Friarstown and featured ‘…. a moated site with an attached rectangular enclosure and tower house; with extensive cropmarks in the area around the tower house. There was an “abbey" site to the south of the complex. The remains here consist of a portion of a door jamb, quoin and some dressed stone. A holy water stoop was found on the site but has now been relocated to St Patrick's College, Carlow. Between the ‘abbey” and the complex is a large irregular enclosure which may have been part of the field system.' The Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy recorded that some remains still existed at Friarstown in 1907.

Killerrig was founded as preceptory for the Knights Hospitallers’ of St John the Baptist by Sir Gilbert de Borard (or Bocard) in the reign of King John. Borard, one of Strongbow's allies, had been entrusted with Waterford after its conquest. By way of a reward, ‘The Song of Dermot’ says Strongbow granted Borard ‘Ofelmeth by the Sea’ which Orpen suggested was Southern Offeimy, the O’Murchada’s lands [1] Sir Gilbert founded the Commandery of St John at ‘Killergy’ on the River Slaney some five miles from Carlow Town, which is taken to be the preceptory at Killerrig. This was confirmed to the Hospitallers by Innocent III in 1212. Linda Doran suggests the preceptory may have been a fortified grange, which were sometimes 'necessary for the defence of the country and the protection of the goods of the king's tenants.’

Many people including Samuel Lewis (1837), Ware and the Irish Architectural Society propose that it was originally held by the Knights Templar. Linda Doran observes that while the Templars acquired land in this area in 1284, Killerrig is not mentioned in the certificate of 1326-7. [2] Writing in 1818, the Abbe de Vertot also maintained it was founded ‘in the thirteenth century’ by Gilbert as a commandry of St John the Baptist – ‘first templars, since hospitallers’ and that it was then in the possession of Sir Gerard Aylmer.[3] The implication here is that it began as a Templar house but, after their ‘extinction; it was granted to the Knights of St John of Jerusalem. Once the wealthiest Order in Europe, the Knights Templar were rather controversially excommunicated by the Pope in 1308. Edward II duly issued instructions for the arrest of all such Knights and the seizure of their property. ‘The instructions given to the English sheriffs were that they should arrest all the Templars within their district, seize all their land, cattle and goods, and to cause an inventory of the same to be made in presence of the warden of the place, whether Templar or not, and of respectable persons in the neighbourhood; to place said goods and chattels in safe keeping; to keep the Templars in safe custody in some convenient place, without subjecting them to prison or irons, and to preserve the charge of the goods and chattels till they received instructions as to their final disposal’. [4] A writ was directed to John Wogan, Lord Justice of Ireland, commanding him to take similar action as soon as he had a chance to liaise with the exchequer and local sheriffs. He was urged to move quickly before the Templars of Ireland got wind of the fate befalling their brethren in England. The establishments of Killerig and Ballymoon were then suppressed. '

'In 1331, the Irish burnt the church, with the priest and eighty persons who had assembled in it ; but the Pope ordered the Archbishop of Dublin to excommunicate all the persons engaged in the perpetration of this atrocious act, and to lay their lands under an interdict'. (Lewis)

At the Dissolution the jury, who were all from the Friarstown area, found that the complex contained a castle in ruins 'situated on the “borders" of the Irish called the McMurroughes, the Mores, the Byrnes; and three messuages. At the court of “Kyllargan" there were two messuages with (in great measure where each acre equalled two acres) nine acres of arable, five acres of pasture and underwood. This was held by Donald Moyne and others at a rent of 76s, with the traditional ploughdays, cartdays, turfdays, weedingdays and hookdays. [N. B. White (ed.), Extents of the Irish monastic possessions 1540-1541 (Dublin, 1943), p. 97-98]

I think the Preceptory of Killerig then passed to the Eustace family but was taken off them following Viscount Baltinglass’s rebellion of 1581. In 1587, two years after his death in exile, his widow Mary, nee Travers, married Sir Gerald Aylmer of Donadea, a Catholic loyalist. He helped her to obtained re-possession of the Preceptory which was granted to 'the wife of Gerard Aylmer’ on 12 December 1590. It may be that Killerrig was actually part of lands in Carlow that Mary's father, Sir John Travers of Monkstown (Carrickbrennan), Co. Dublin, secured from the Earl of Kildare. Shortly after Mary's death in 1610, her estate was shared between several grantees but I’m not sure who got Killerrig. Possibly the Wall family? The preceptory was granted by Queen Elizabeth to Mary Aylmer, ’the wife of Gerard Aylmer’ on 12th December 1590.[5] One wonders did Benjamin acquire the property directly from the Aylmers.

Meanwhile, it looks like Killerig was occupied for a time by James Grace (1537-1608), a henchman of the Earl of Ormonde whose altar tomb slab in Baltinglass Abbey described him as being 'that noble and illustrious man, James Grace, formerly of Killerige, an inhabitant Rathvilly.’ James Grace’s wife Margaret was an O Byrne of Portrushin and her brother Hugh Geangach O Byrne was an ally of Sir Edmund Butler. Grace was Constable of Rathvilly by August 1572 when Ormonde granted him 'the house, castle, manor and sittie of Rathville in county Carlow, with the towns, villages or hamlets of Rahell, Brossalleston, Walterston, Richardeston and Rathdonill, parcel of said manor for 21 years 30.’ His brother-in-law Hugh Geangach was granted the lease of the Manor of Clonmore at the same time. Grace died on 23 February 1605, aged 68. (John Kelly, 'The collection of cess pardons and fines by Robert Hartpole in Fort O'Nolan, Clonegal and Rathvilly in the 1570s, Carloviana, the Journal of the Carlow Archaeological and Historical Society, 2017, p. 146.)

Today there is only one wall of the monastery still standing, complete with the original slit window. It stands opposite the house where the late Seamus McGrath was born and raised and which, when I visited him in 2013, was being used as a cattle shed. It was clear that Seamus felt a strong connection with this location. After our meeting, I wrote: 'He runs his hands along walls cemented with ox-blood and points out the narrow slits through which defenders let loose their deadly arrows a thousand years ago. Alongside the wall are a series of bins where his father Jim used to store meal for his cattle. During the Troubles, Jim kept his single barrels shotgun stashed in the monastery so that the IRA wouldn’t seize it. Jim took the chimney down because it was leaking and about to collapse. Seamus himself used some of the granite from the building to construct his own house. There is still no preservation order on the monastery despite the fact nobody has lived there since the Knight’s Hosiptallers left. Elsewhere there are the two wells down which ancient monks lowered buckets for fresh water. ‘They say there’s treasure down there but it’s a long way down to find out,’ laughs Seamus. An ambitious but aged priest arrived with a metal detector one day but was seemingly so hard of hearing that he failed to notice anytime his machine began bleeping. It is not so long since somebody sighted a ghost, clad in a hooded cassock, with a puck on his back, heading up the Friarstown Road. ‘One of the old stock’, smiles Seamus.'

In 1837, 'the parish comprises 3841 statute acres, as applotted under the tithe act, and valued at £3405 per annum, which, with the exception of about 100 acres, is good arable and pasture land'. (Lewis).

Footnotes

[1] The Song of Dermot and the Earl: An Old French Poem from the Carew’, Goddard Henry Orpen, Morice Regan (Clarendon, 1892). Knights' Fees in Counties Wexford, Carlow and Kilkenny, 13th-15th Century’, Eric St. John Brooks (Irish Manuscriots Commission, 1950). See also, The Annals of Ireland by John Clyn, Richard Butler, Thady Dowling, Thaddaeus Dowling, Irish Archaeological Society, 1849).

[2] Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy, 1907; Publications / Irish Archaeological Society, Dublin (1849), p. v. At this period the Knights were said to possess some 19,000 manors across Europe. In 1187, they had been nearly annihilated in a massacre of 30,000 Christians by the Saracens at Tiberias. Synoptical sketch of the illustrious & sovereign order of Knights, Richard Brown.

[3] L’Abbe de Vertot, ‘History of the Knights Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem, Styled Afterwards the Knights of Rhodes and at present The Knights of Malta’ (J. Christie, Dublin, 1818), p. 430.

[4] History of the Irish Hierarchy With the Monasteries of Each County, Biographical Notices of the Irish Saints, Prelates, Thomas Walsh, p. 366-367.

[5] Walsh, p. 368. Thomas D'Arcy McGee, A History of the Attempts to Establish the Protestant Reformation in Ireland (Patrick Donahoe, Boston, 1853), p. 379

******

APPENDIX B - THE WHARTONS

It is not yet know if or how Benjamin Bunbury was connected to the Wharton family. They are thought to be descendants of Henry VIII through Henry Carey, the King’s illegitimate son by Mary Carey (nee Boleyn) who was herself a kinswoman of the Butlers. Philip, 4th Lord Wharton (1613–1696) was a prominent horse breeder and owned lands in Wetsmeath as well as Carlow. Although he was a Puritan and a favourite of Oliver Cromwell, he refused to assent to Charles I’s execution. In 1676 he was imprisoned in the Tower of London. When James II came to the throne in 1685, Lord Wharton’s son Thomas Wharton went to confer with William of Orange at his court in The Hague. Thomas is also credited with having composed the popular Williamite marching ballad Lilli Burlero, described as ‘a jig with Irish roots’ which satirised the sentiments of Irish Catholic Jacobites and ridiculed James II.[i] Thomas served as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland 1708–1710 and was later created Marquess of Wharton, as well as Marquess of Catherlogh (ie: Carlow) by George I. His son Philip, 1st Duke of Wharton, an ally of the Jacobite Butlers (who were also kinsmen of the Boleyns), later bankrupted himself through his personal debauchery and other excesses. The 1st Duke was Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of England and founder of the Hell-Fire Club in London. [ii]

******

APPENDIX C: THE ORMONDE CONNECTION

Captain Barnes service to the Ormonde's and Benjamin's rent of Killerig from the 1st Duke of Ormonde's son highlights the importance of the House of Butler to the Bunbury family at this time. The Great Duke had been the first Irish magnate to move away from the concept of power deriving from sheer military might to something consideraly more intriuging. Cromwellian connections aside, perhaps Henry Bunbury's loyalty to the Stuarts during the English Civil War stood them in good favour when the 1st Duke was appointed Viceroy of Ireland by Charles II (1662-1668), following the Restoration of the Monarchy? He had served as Viceroy under Charles I twice in the 1640s and would return to Dublin Castle again in 1677 until 1685. During this latter period, the Great Duke made a massive splash in the city by having over 100 bewigged court officials and servants in his entourage. It must have looked like the ultimate ACDC / Status Quo hoe-down. They were certainly rocking it. Household accounts for the 16 months between May 1682 and September 1683 show that Ormonde household and their guests consumed 6000 gallons (about 22,200 bottles) of wine, close on 50 bottles a day. That’s before anyone was offered whiskey or any other forms of alcohol.

The Bunburys were part of the 2nd Duke of Ormonde’s extended circle, men loyal to the House of Butler who could be installed as useful political allies in the new local governmnt system that folowed the Glorious Revolution. However, while he offered advancement, the 2nd Duke’s power base was simulatenously crumbling. His vast estate was being ‘devoured by debt’ (on account of his grandfather's expenses) and his inheritance ‘encumbered and mortgaged in every part, inefficentloy managed, top heavy with superfluous personnel'. (3). Renting land from the Duke was not a particularly costly business. Indeed, one of the reasons the Ormonde estates were so profitless was their common practice of ‘abatements of rent to be granted and arrears indulged’. Collection of rents was slow ‘on the pretext that the depridation of both sides in the Jacobite wars had destroyed stock, damaged agricultural production and made ready money more scarce’. The 2nd Duke and his wife were both lively Stuarts, love-making, gaming and spending money around the clock. In due course, their lifestyle and the costs of mainatining so many houses and castles obliged the Ormondes to sell off some of their property. One wonders whether these were the sort of men who apparently raised their glasses 'to the little gentleman in black velvet' after William III's horse slipped on a molehole and threw the King on the ground with such force that he broke his collarbone and died a few days later.

Lisnavagh and Tobinstown were leased to Benjamin Bunburys by the Great Duke's youngest son Richard Butler, Earl of Arran. Following Lord Arran's death in 1686/1687, it appears his estates passed to his young nephew Charles Butler (1671-1758), who also became Earl of Arran. Charles and his brother James, the 2nd Duke of Ormonde, were the sons of the Great Duke's firstborn son Thomas, earl of Ossory, who was tragically drowned in 1680. Lord Ossory was married in 1659, on the eve of the Restoration, to Lady Emilia [Ameilia] Nassau, daughter of Lodewijk [Louis], Lord of Auverquerque, who was himself a natural son of Maurice, Prince of Orange, for whom the island of Mauritius is named. The Ossorys had eleven children although details are only known of five, namely the aforementioned sons, James and Charles, and three daughters, Lady Elizabeth Butler [who married William Stanley, 9th Earl of Derby], Lady Emilia Butler [who never married] and Lady Henrietta Butler [who married Hendrik van Nassau Ouderkerk, Earl of Grantham].

In 1693, Charles Butler was created Baron Cloghgrenan [sic], Viscount Tullough and Earl of Arran in the peerage of Ireland, and Baron Butler of Weston, Hunts, in the peerage of England. Horace Walpole described him as “an inoffensive old man, last of the illustrious house of Ormonde, and much respected by the Jacobites”. However, others believed Lord Arran deliberately started the great fire that destroyed much of Dublin Castle on the 7th April 1684. Lord Arran’s wife, Elizabeth Crew, employed as her lady in waiting Katherine Mildmay, the aunt and foster mother of the essayist Richard Steele who founded The Spectator. Lady Arran was also part of a “social circle of tribades” based around Lady Frances Brudenell, Countess of Newburgh, wife of the 2nd Earl of Newburgh, who lived on Usher’s Quay, who was noted in Dublin for her bisexuality, and her affair with Lady Allen of Stillorgan Park. After the death in exile of his older brother, Charles succeeded as de jure 14th Earl and 3rd Duke of Ormonde. [i] He died without male issue in 1758, at which point these titles became extinct for the second time. [ii] His unmarried sister Lady Emilia succeeded as heir general to the Ormonde estates. Many long decades later, the Earls Cowper successfully laid claim to part of the Ormonde inheritance, including part of the chattels of Thomas, Lord Ossory. As there were no other senior heirs male, or heir general, to the progeny of Lord Ossory, the succession to the Ormond estates and titles fell back to the line of a younger brother of the Great Duke of Ormonde.

[i] G.E.C. The Complete Peerage of England Scotland Ireland Great Britain and the United Kingdom, new edition, revised and much enlarged edited by The Hon. Vicary Gibbs London, London 1910-45, 2222? vols., vol. x, pp. 162-3.

[ii] Ryan, p. 241.

*****

END-NOTES

1. (a) The burial ground is now very much smaller than formerly, as, in the 18th century, much of it was cut away for the erection of houses as the town extended away from the castle. The present Protestant Church, of St. Mary's was erected in 1732. Its tower was taken down in 1833, and the present spire erected from a design by a Mr Thomas Cobden. In 1724 whilst on a visit to Carlow Dean Swift upon seeing the low tower of St Mary's "High Church" and obviously having met some of the population the Dean penned the following distich :- Carlow.
"A high church and no steeple,
A poor town but proud people."
[Note added by Lord Walter FitzGerald :- So as not to upset the present inhabitants I have added underneath - Times have greatly changed for the better with Carlow, now with a fine tall steeple, no longer a poor town but still a proud people.]
From a 1909 paper addressed to Reverend John Finlay, Dean of Leighlin, Rector of St Mary's Church, Carlow, and sSigned by Lord Walter FitzGerald (Courtesy of the Pat Purcell Papers).

1 (d) As to John and Sir Henry's other sisters, Mary Bunbury married Thomas Draper of Walton and Martha Bunbury died in 1664.

FOOTNOTES

[I] A pedigree of the Desminieres family was compiled by W. B. Wright, published in The Irish Builder Vol. 29 (1887), pp. 71, 339. See also British Library MS. 3,682; "Researching Huguenot Settlers in Ireland” by Vivien Costello, The BYU Family Historian, Vol. 6 (Fall 2007) p. 83-163.

[ii] Lower Mortarstown adjoined Cloghna and was close to the old Butler / Carew castle at Cloughgrenan, just outside Carlow on the banks of the Barrow. Mortarstown had belonged to the Bradston family until Francis Bradstone was attainted by James II's Irish Parliament. It later passed to Col. Kane Bunbury.

[iii] In earlier editions of 'Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry', Benjamin's wife Mary is described as a widow of Matthew Sheppard of Owles in Lancashire. She is sometimes listed as Elizabeth. Neither of these suggestions stack up. See here for more on the the Bernard, Bunbury, Humfrey and Sheppard families.

In the will of John Humfrey of Donard in 1665 - he names his wife Thomasina and brother Gorman (wife Margaret); Sons: John, Gorman, William, Edward, Henry, Thomas (younger than 15 in the will but by 1682 had married Mary Sheppard) and Daughter Mary (m John Jackson).

Burke’s Landed Gentry of 1899 also claimed that Benjamin Bunbury, Esq. of Killerig had a daughter, Deborah. She was in fact Deborah Sheppard [Sheapeard], daughter of Matthew Shepperd, of Killerick, Co. Carlow, and sister of Jonathan Shepperd, Esq. of Derryvowles. [Perhaps Mathew was the son of Philip Sheppard?] Deborah was married to Benjamin's stepson, Thomas Bernard. The claim that she was Benjamin's daughter, corrected by Burke in 1912, proably stems from a reference in Deborah's will of 1728 to her mother "Mary Bunbury, relict of Benjamin Bunbury". As Benjamin Bunbury did not have a daughter named Deborah, and as his wife Mary died in 1711, Hilary Jarvis believes the term mother simply refers to Deborah's mother-in-law. The use of relationship terms such as in-law, half-sibling and step-sibling were not in common use at this time.

Deborah Sheapeard was married twice. Firstly in 1676-7 to Edward Humfrey [Humphrys] (d. 1686) of Clonagh, co. Carlow, the fifth son of John Humfrey (Humfreys) of Donard, forefather of the Humfreys of Cavanacor. She and Edward had at least five children between 1677 and 1684 - Mathew, Benjamin, William, John and Thomas Humphrys. Edward Humfrey died in 1686. A deed dated April 1729 between John Humfrey, gent of Carlow, son and heir of Edward Humfrey (Gent, deceased) and Deborah Bernard of Carlow (widow of Thomas Bernard Esq, deceased), confirms the first marriage of Deborah (Sheppard) to Edward Humfrey. Ref: ROD 84/100/58379.

In 1708 Deborah, then about sixty years old, found companionship once more when she was married secondly in 1708 to Thomas Bernard (1665-1720) of Oldtown and Clonmulsh, Co. Carlow.

[iv] Mary Bunbury's son Thomas Bernard (d. 1720), by her first husband Charles Bernard, was married firstly in 1700 to Deborah Franks, a daughter of Charles Franks, Esq, of Clapham, with whom he had five children: Charles, Franks, Joseph [father of William Bernard, 1726- 1807], Elizabeth (m. Henry Rudkins) and Anne (m. Thomas Barnes). Thomas Bernard was married secondly, in 1708 to Deborah (Sheppard) Humfrey, widow of Edward Humfrey of Clonagh, Co. Carlow. His second wife, Deborah was a daughter of Mathew Shepperd of Killerig [Killerrick] Deborah died in Carlow in 1732. Her will, made four years earlier, clarifies that she was a widow by 1728, that she was Thomas Bernard's second wife and lists her five Humfreys children as well as her five Bernard step-children, Charles, Franks, Joseph , Elizabeth Rudkins and Anne Barnes [Barns]. [Ref: Index of Irish Wills 1484-1858]. With the £150, she gave £25 to each of her four elest sons and then £5 each to the rest. Deborah would have been in her seventies when she made her will.

Burke's makes an unfounded claim that Charles Bernard was a grandson of Francis Bernard Esq of Abington in Northamptonshire who accompanied Cromwell to Ireland and settled in Co. Carlow. Hilary Jarvis has sourced a William Bernard in the 1659 Census, as well as a John Bernard (in John Ryan's "History and Antiquities of Carlow") regarding a deed in 1619 in Tinnriland (ie: Tinryland). Hilary also provided this cuirous story about a Bernard in Dublin during the early 14th century:

1308 in Dublin. William Bernard against John McCorcan, of a plea of trespass. It is found by the jury that, whereas William, on the Sunday after the Nativity of St John Baptist last, in the town of New Castle of Lyons[Dublin], was playing at ball with men of that town, and the ball was struck in the direction of John, who was standing near to watch the game. John ran towards the ball, which William was following in pursuit, and met him so swiftly that he wounded William in the upper part of his right leg with a knife which he, John, had upon him, which knife unfortunately without John's knowledge pierced its sheath and so injured William, to his damage of five shillings. And the jurors, being asked if John did this from ill-timed zeal or ran against William from malice aforethought, say that it was not so, but that it was for the purpose of playing that he ran towards him to hit the ball. Therefore it is considered that William recover against him his said damages. And John is in mercy, which is pardoned him afterwards by the justiciar, because the jurors testify that William and John at the said time and before that were fast friends, and that John did not wound William knowingly

The prerogative will of Thomas Bernard of Clonmulsk, Co. Catherlogh, Esq. 25 Feb. 1720.: Narrate, 1 ¼ p., 19 May 1721. Wife Deborah Bernard. Eldest son Charles Bernard. Second son Franks Bernard. Third son Joseph Bernard. Daughter Ann Bernard. “His brothers Joseph Bunbury and Phillip Bernard, Esqrs." The will lists Harry Dungan, Redmond and Daniel Phelan, tenants. In terms of land it refers to:
"Ballypic[k]as, Clarbarracum, Bolybegg, Queen's Co.
Drumselig, Balliglishine, Queen's Co.
Demore Bog. Bellclogh. Queen's Co. Ballybar
Clonmulsk, Co. Catherlogh.
The witnesses were William Nesbitt, Catherlogh, clerk, Thomas Doyle, Garryhunden, Co. Catherlogh, mason, Bartholomew Newton, Bushellstowne, Co. Catherlogh, gent.
Memorial witnessed by: Robert Wallis, Dublin, notary public, Isaac Walsh.
On behalf of Franks Bernard (seal) Joseph Bernard (seal)
Ref Eustace, P. Beryl. Abstracts of wills / Govt document 1954

Mary Bunbury, widow of Benjamin, appears to have lived to a considerable age - according to Burke's Landed Gentry of Ireland 1912, her will was proven in 1741.

Two editions of Burke (1847 and 1853) claims that Elizabeth was married thirdly to a Richard Humprheys Esq. but this reference to a later marriage is omitted in later editions (1858 onwards) and appears to be erroneous. In searching the Grantor's Indexes, Hilary Jarvis reported in June 2018 that she could find no mention of such a marriage. As Hilary Jarvis observes, Richard/John Humfrey died in 1655.

[iv.a] Exchequer Court of Equity Bill Books, 1674-1850 and Ireland, Court of Chancery Records, 1633-1851 - Ireland, Court of Chancery Records, Bill Books 1636-1676.

2c. However, Wikitree suggests the following: "Thomas Barnes who was was born in the 1620s, probably in Derbyshire, England. He was a Lieutenant in Oliver Cromwell's army and was granted lands at Grange (Kiltown and possibly also spelt the same as the county) in the south of County Killkenny, and at Donore (or Donover) near Moynalty in County Meath. These land grants were confirmed by Charles II in September 1666. He married but his wife's name is not known. She was likely from Derbyshire as tradition says three young sons joined their father in Kilkenny. As understood (this needs more research), the Grange is a place (?civil parish) near the town of Kilkenny (may also be spelt "Kiltown") in the county of Kilkenny, Ireland. It is about 135 kilomtres southwest of Dublin. Donore (or Donover) is outside the town (?village) of Moynalty in County Meath to the northwest of Dublin. The accompanying Google map shows both Grange and Moynalty with the "directions to Dublin" to orient the viewer. The name of Thomas' wife is unknown. Whoever she was, it is thought that she, too, was from Derbyshire. She and Thomas had the following children:
John - was given Donore
Thomas - stayed at the Grange in Kilkenny + Diana
Caleb - sheriff of Kilkenny – 1709-1714 + Rebecca Bary
Carlot + Thomas Milbank
Elizabeth + Stevington Kilkenny
Thomas Barnes may have died in 1684.
Grange may have been the townland on the west side of the River Nore just south of Ballyragget.

2d. "Journals for the Preservation of the Memorials for the Dead", Vol, Issue 1916, CARLOW, page 18; John Ryan's "History & Antiquities of the County of Carlow" - Page 331. I think '44' must be a misprint and that he was '54' when he died.

3. D.W Hayton, Dependence, Clientage & Afiinity in ‘The Dukes of Ormonde

 

Above: Extract of Norries / Norris family tree.

 

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