Irish properties

Submitted by alkirtley on Fri, 11/22/2019 - 15:30

In addition to Stormont Castle, more than one property in Ireland has been lived in or owned by Blacketts.

Ballyne, Co. Kilkenny
Ballyne, Co. Kilkenny

 John Blacket (1807-1881) was Land Steward to the Earl of Bessborough for more than 20 years and he and his wife Elizabeth Stephens (1809-1887), who was a first cousin of John and a descendant of Blacketts herself, lived at Ballyne (now known as Belline), Piltown, Co. Kilkenny until their deaths.

In 1812 Ballyne House had been borrowed from the Earl of Bessborough by William Lamb, (who later became Viscount Melbourne and was Queen Victoria’s first Prime Minister).
 Lamb’s wife, Lady Caroline Lamb, was then the centre of a public scandal due to her notorious affair with the poet Lord Byron. When Byron terminated the affair, Lamb decided to remove his wife from society and public scrutiny and installed her in Ballyne House.

The house was badly damaged by fire but extensively renovated and extended in 1925.

 On 28 May 1852 Edward Algernon Blackett, a younger son of Christopher Blackett of Wylam, married Lucy Minchin, daughter of Rev. William Minchin of Greenhills, Moneygall, County Tipperary. Greenhills had been in the Minchin family since 1703, but following the Irish Great Famine of 1845-1852, William Minchin had been unable to meet his financial obligations and Greenhills and other land was put up for auction in six lots by the Encumbered Estates Court.

On 16 March 1852 Edward’s younger brother, Montagu Blackett successfully bid for just over 230 acres at Greenhills. On 5 June 1852 the remaining lots were auctioned and Edward Algernon Blackett acquired approximately 1200 acres of leasehold land at Cloncannon, plus a further 500 acres near Moneygall. He did not stop there, and in the same year acquired nearly 1200 acres in County Tipperary, 500 acres in King’s County and parts of the Biggs estate in County Tipperary.

Barnagrotty House
Barnagrotty House

Greenhills House is no longer in existence but the nearby Barnagrotty House, built in the 1890s, probably for Edward Umfreville Blackett, the eldest son of Edward Algernon Blackett, is still extant. This branch of the family have since been described as “of Wylam, Oakwood and Barnagrotty”.

President Obama and the First Lady at
President Obama and the First Lady at Moneygall

The village of Moneygall achieved temporary fame in 2011 when US President Barack Obama and his wife visited Moneygall, from where his 3xgreat-grandfather, Falmouth Kearney, had emigrated to New York in 1850.