Thursday, 2 April 2020

(411) Barron of County Waterford, baronets

Barron of Co. Waterford
As with so many Irish gentry families, the loss of early records means that the earlier generations of this family as recorded below are very uncertain, and dependent as much on family traditions reported to the editors of Burke's Landed Gentry as upon any original records. I have, however, done my best to corroborate or correct the statements made by Burke in such sources as are available, and particularly from local newspapers, which for this part of Ireland become a rich source only in the 1820s.

The essential facts of the family background seem to be fairly clear, however. Their forebears were a cadet branch of the great Fitzgerald family and were based at Burnchurch (Co. Kilkenny). Already in the 16th century they were using the alternative name of Barron or Baron. They remained Roman Catholics and were Royalists in the Civil War, as a result of which they were deprived of their estate at Burnchurch under Cromwell. Capt. James Fitzgerald alias Barron, who was heir to his uncle, Richard Fitzgerald alias Barron of Burnchurch, went to France and served under the Prince de Condé, Louis II of Bourbon, in his military campaigns in the 1660s. Some years after the restoration of the monarchy in Britain and Ireland, Capt. Barron returned to his native country and sought to recover the Burnchurch estate, but his claim, like those of many other Irish Catholic families, was never adjudicated on. He subsequently settled in County Waterford, where over several generations the family acquired - through marriage and purchase - a number of small estates, eventually achieving a position as one of leading gentry families in the county by sheer force of numbers. Not only did they have at any one time a large number of properties, they acquired and sold them frequently, and also passed them between different branches of the family by bequest and rental, so that tracing the descent of individual places is far from straightforward. Only those properties which clearly had country house status are noticed below.

Capt. James Barron had three sons, of whom the second, Pierse Barron (fl. 1725) was chiefly responsible for the liberal scattering of the family name around County Waterford, since he had five sons, three of whom also had large families. His eldest son, James Barron (b. 1715) of Carrickbarrahane, had five sons and two daughters. Two of the sons, Eustace and William, emigrated to Cadiz (Spain) and their descendants moved on to Mexico, where in the early 19th century they founded the great merchant and banking house of Barron, Forbes & Co. and subsequently acquired mining and political interests. It is said that in the mid 19th century, over 90% of the external trade of Mexico was in their hands. The wealth and status of the Spanish and Mexican branches of the family attracted several of their Irish relations in later centuries to settle, either temporarily or permanently, in those countries, and this is reflected in the genealogy below.

The third son of Pierse Barron (fl. 1725) was John Barron (1718-1800), who inherited the Ballydurn and Ballyneal estates between Kilmacthomas and Carrick-on-Suir from his father. He had six sons and three daughters, the eldest of whom was Pierse Barron (1752-1811) of Ballyneal, who had five sons and five daughters, born late in his life. Pierse seems to have increased the wealth of the family significantly, probably through trading with England, but when he died only his eldest son, Pierse Barron, was of age. In 1817, tragedy struck when this Pierse, with four of his sisters, were drowned by the sinking of the packet boat 'William & Mary' in the Bristol Channel. As a result, their brother, Henry Winston Barron (1795-1872) became the head of this branch of the family. Like his younger brother, William Winston (later William Newell) Barron (1805-91), and several of their cousins, Henry was a political animal, and actively involved in campaigning for Catholic emancipation and, later, for weakening the ties between Ireland and Britain. He served as the MP for Waterford City at Westminster between 1832 and 1870, but his long political career was far from smooth and he lost as many elections as he won due to some bitter political rivalries, which at least once spilled over into a duel. As his rivals were quick to point out, he was at least averagely venal, and there seems little doubt that several of his relatives benefited in their careers from the helping hand which those who owed him favours were able to provide. At the end of his first term in Parliament he was rewarded with a baronetcy. His marriage in 1822 brought him an interest in the estates in England of the Page-Turner family, which greatly increased his wealth, and he bought Belmont Park near Waterford - the grandest of the family seats - and also built Glenanna, a little cottage near the sea at Ardmore.

In due course, the baronetcy and the estates passed to his son, Sir Henry Page-Turner Barron (1824-1900), 2nd bt., who was a very different man from his father. He entered the diplomatic service straight from school and spent fifty years 'lying abroad for the good of his country' at postings in Italy, Belgium, Portugal, Turkey and Germany. He was unmarried and had no issue, so the baronetcy died with him, but he left a vast fortune of over £300,000, which is comparable to the great industrial magnates of the time. He made a significant number of charitable bequests, left an important collection of pictures to the National Gallery of Ireland, and divided his landed property between his nephew, Cecil Charles Polhill-Turner (later Polhill), who received his English lands, and his first cousin once removed, Edward Alphonse Winston Barron (1876-1939), who received the Irish estates (some 4,680 acres in County Waterford). The Irish property no longer included Belmont Park, which the 1st baronet had sold to his second cousin, Pierse Marcus Barron (1806-79) in the 1860s, and although it did include Glenanna, this was a small house not really suitable as a permanent residence. This lack of a principal residence had not mattered in the 2nd baronet's day as he lived abroad, but in 1903, his heir, Edward A.W. Barron bought the Woodstown estate overlooking Waterford Harbour. He subsequently divided his time between Woodstown and a town house in London. During his ownership, the estate was greatly reduced by sales (chiefly to farming tenants), and after Edward died, his executors sold Woodstown in 1944. Edward was apparently the last of the family to live as a landed gentleman in County Waterford.


Carrickbarrahane (aka Carrick Barron), Stradbally, Co. Waterford

The house was a seat of the Barron family but was rebuilt, perhaps after 1832, as a two-storey, five bay house with a one bay pedimented breakfront having a round-headed window above the fanlighted doorway for the Osbornes of Newtown Anner (Co. Tipperary) and was known for a time as 'Lady Osborne's Summer House'. The house still exists but seems now to be a farmhouse.

Descent: James Barron (b. 1715); to son, Pierse Barron (b. 1740); to daughter, Mary Anne, wife of John Barron (1754-97); to son, Pierse George Barron (1792-1864), who leased it to his uncle, William Barron (c.1761-1832) and later sold it to the Osborne family of Newtown Anner, who rebuilt it.



Glennana, Ardmore, Co. Waterford

A simple, long and low house described in 1837 as 'the marine residence of H. Winston Barron Esq.'.
Glenanna, Ardmore: the folly gatehouse.
Close to it stood a Gothick folly gatehouse dated 1819, with two round towers, battlements and pointed windows, which was perhaps influenced by Ardo nearby. It is said that the gatehouse was intended to be the first phase of a rebuilding campaign which would extend to the house: a scheme which was perhaps abandoned after Sir Henry bought Belmont Park in the early 1820s. The house was abandoned in the 20th century and is now in ruins; the gatehouse is also ruined, but still stands to the full height of the towers at the time of writing.


Descent: probably built for Sir Henry Winston Barron (1795-1872), 1st bt.; to son, Sir Henry Page-Turner Barron (1824-1900), 2nd bt.; to first cousin, once removed, Edward Alphonse Winston Barron (1876-1939)...

Woodstown, Co. Waterford


Woodstown: the house in the 1970s

An elegant Regency villa overlooking Waterford Harbour, attributed to George Richard Pain (1793-1828) of Cork, who had been a pupil of John Nash and came to Ireland with his brother James. It was built in 1823 onto an earlier small house (which survives at the rear) for Robert Shapland Carew (1787-1856), later 1st Baron Carew, as a present for his wife. 
Woodstown: the drawing room
It is of two storeys and square in plan, with a graceful iron veranda running all round the ground floor. Each front has three bays, with six tripartite windows on the main south-east facing garden front and two in the centre of each of the side elevations. The shallow-pitched roof is supported on broad eaves. Inside, the house has delicate plasterwork in the main reception rooms. After the 1st Lord Carew's death in 1856, Woodstown remained the home of his widow, Jane (1798-1901), who not only became a centenarian but had the rare distinction of living in three different centuries. It was sold to Edward A.W. Barron (1876-1939) after her death at the age of 102 in 1901, and he engaged Ashlin & Coleman (formerly Ashlin & Pugin) to make alterations and additions to the house. This firm, which was known almost exclusively for its Gothic work, was an unexpected choice to alter a delicate Regency house, but the link was probably that they had worked on Ferrybank Catholic Church for Sir Henry P-T. Barron a few years earlier. They proposed a Classical re-rendering of the façade of Woodstown, and the addition of a gallery, a library with neo-Celtic decoration and a new top-lit billiard room under a dome. Fortunately, nothing came of these proposals, and the house survived intact. It was bought in 1945 by Mr. C.D. Cholmeley-Harrison, a stockbroker who later carried out the notable restoration of Emo Court (Co. Leix). He let it for the summer of 1967 to Jacqueline Kennedy, the widow of President J.F. Kennedy, who must count as the house's most famous resident, even though she was only here for six weeks. The house has been discreetly modernised in recent years and the drawing room is no longer the rather relentless blue shown above.

Descent: Robert Shapland Carew (1787-1856), 1st Baron Carew; to widow, Jane, Lady Carew (1798-1901); to grandson, Robert Shapland George Julian Carew (1860-1923), 3rd Baron Carew, who sold to Edward Alphonse Winston Barron (d. 1939); sold 1944; sold 1945 to Cholmeley Dering Cholmeley-Harrison (1908-2008), who sold 1971...


Georgestown House, near Kilmacthomas, Co. Waterford

Georgestown House: the house today.
A three-bay late Georgian house of two storeys over a basement, with a lower wing. There are segmental pediments over the windows on the ground floor and a simple dentil cornice under the roof. The side of the house is weather-slated. It was a seat of the Barron family and in 1877, when it was advertised to let, contained a parlour, drawing room and four principal bedrooms in addition to the service accommodation. In the mid 20th century it was the home of Lord William Beresford, who restored the house, putting back the glazing bars which had been removed in Victorian times, and giving the house its present very handsome doorway, with engaged Doric columns and a broken pediment; this came from Ballycanvan House near Waterford. 

Descent: James Power; to daughter, Margaret Catherine, wife of James Barron (b. 1715); to nephew, John Barron (1750-1800); to son, James Barron (c.1771-1857); to son-in-law, James Sherlock Harper (d. 1868); to second cousin, John Marcus Barron (1844-80); to son, Pierse John Barron, whose trustees sold 1885 to Richard Henry Kelly; sold c.1931 to Lord William Beresford (1905-73); given c.1948 to sister, Lady Patricia Miller (1902-91); sold for use as a stud farm; sold 2010.

Belmont Park, Ferrybank, Co. Waterford

Belmont Park, Ferrybank: the late 18th century house sandwiched between the additions of 1885 and the chapel of 1926. Image: National Library of Ireland.
There was a house on this site by 1776, which was at first called Graigshare or Mount Hulings after John Hulings (d. 1779). This was rebuilt in about 1789 as a six bay three storey house, reputedly to the designs of the otherwise unrecorded William Anthony junior, probably for William Newport, a local banker, who committed suicide when faced with bankruptcy. He called it Belmont House, but after his death the house was sold to Sir Henry Winston Barron, 1st bt., who changed the name to Barroncourt in about 1840. The property was acquired in 1883 by the Brothers of Charity and repaired to serve as a private mental hospital for men, called St. Patrick's Institution. Substantial additions were made to the buildings in 1885 and a chapel was built and opened in 1927. The house was gutted by fire in 1949 and rebuilt in 1951-54. Since the 1960s the work of the hospital has been redirected to young men with learning disabilities and transferred to lay hands, although the Brothers of Charity are still involved at a governance level.

Descent: John Hulings (d. 1779)...William Newport (fl. 1789)...sold to Sir Henry Winston Barron (1795-1872), 1st bt., who let it from about 1860 and then sold it to his cousin, Pierse Marcus Barron (1806-79); to son, Pierce E.L. A. Barron (1826-96) who sold 1883 to Brothers of Charity.



Barron family of Carrickbarrahane and Georgestown House


Fitzgerald (alias Barron), Captain James (fl. 1690). Son of Edward Fitzgerald and nephew of Richard Fitzgerald of Burnchurch (Co. Kilkenny), who was deprived of his estates by Oliver Cromwell and transplanted to Connaught. A Roman Catholic in religion, he went abroad and served in France under the Prince de Condé, returning to Ireland after the Restoration of King Charles II with Col. Dempsey and others. He petitioned the king for the return of his barony and lands of Burnchurch, but his claim was rejected by default, since it was never formally determined. He then settled in Co. Waterford, where he married Slany Ny Brien, daughter and heiress of Donald More O'Brien of Cummeragh and Abbeyside Castle (Co. Waterford), and had issue including:
(1) William Barron, of Ballykirogue; married a daughter of Darby Kennedy of Ballykerogue alias Castletown, and had issue;
(2) Pierse Barron (b. c.1690; fl. 1726) (q.v.);
(3) Stephen Barron, of Carrigennahala; married a daughter of Hearn of Brennan, and had issue three daughters.
He lived at Fahagh, Stradbally (Co. Waterford).
His date of death is unknown. His wife's date of death is unknown.

Barron, Pierse (b. c.1690; fl. 1726). Second son of Capt. James Fitzgerald (alias Barron) and his wife Slany Ny Brien, daughter and heiress of Donald More O'Brien of Cummeragh and Abbeyside Castle (Co. Waterford), born about 1690. He married, c.1710*, Mary, daughter of Thomas FitzGerald of Kilconavey, and had issue:
(1) James Barron (b. 1715) (q.v.);
(2) William Barron (1717-1800?), born 1717; settled at Durrow (Co. Leix); married Mary Anne, daughter of Morgan Kennedy of Garranamoyden and Ballynamullin, and had issue five sons and two daughters; will proved 1 May 1800;
(3) John Barron (1718-1800) (q.v.);
(4) Edward Barron; died unmarried and without issue;
(5) Pierse Barron (1726-1809) of Fahagh, born 1726; married Anne, daughter of Luke Power of Waterford, but had no issue; died 1809; will proved 28 April 1812;
(6) Monica Barron; died unmarried.
He lived at Garrahillersh (Co. Waterford).
His date of death is unknown. His wife's date of death is unknown.
*Some sources give a date for this marriage of 12 May 1697, but this seems improbable as all the children were born so much later.

Barron, James (b. 1715). Eldest son of Pierse Barron (b. c.1690; fl. 1726) and his wife Mary, daughter of Thomas FitzGerald of Kilconavey, born 1715. He married, 1738, Margaret Catherine, daughter and heiress of John Power of Georgestown (Co. Waterford), and had issue:
(1) Pierse Barron (b. 1740) (q.v.);
(2) Eustace Barron (1742-97), born 1742; emigrated to Spain, where he married, 1784, Catalina Manuela Cantillon (c.1762-1823) of Cadiz, and had issue six sons and two daughters (from whom descent the Barron family of Mexico, bankers, merchants and proprietors of extensive mines); died 1797;
(3) William Barron (1745-1814) (q.v.);
(4) John Barron (1750-1800) (q.v.);
(5) Allen Barron; died unmarried;
(6) Catherine Barron; married A. Barker of Co. Wexford;
(7) Ellen Barron; married [forename unknown] Horseman of Co.. Cork.
He lived at Carrickbarrahane and inherited Georgestown House in right of his wife.
His date of death is unknown. His wife's date of death is unknown.

Barron, Pierse (b. 1740). Eldest son of James Barron (b. 1715) and his wife Margaret Catherine, daughter and heiress of John Power of Georgestown (Co. Waterford), born 1740. He married, 1768, Johanna, daughter of Thomas Connery, and had issue:
(1) Mary Anne Barron; married, 1789, her cousin, John Barron (1754-97) of Ballyneale, second son of John Barron of Ballydurne, and had issue one son; her date of death is unknown;
(2) Margaret Barron; married James Quan of Waterford (bankrupt, 1824), but died without issue.
He inherited Carrickbarrahane from his father.
His date of death is unknown. His wife's date of death is unknown.

Barron, William (1745-1814). Third son of James Barron (b. 1715) and his wife Margaret Catherine, daughter and heiress of John Power of Georgestown (Co. Waterford), born 1745. He married, 1794, Margarita Power  of Davidstown Castle (Kildare), and had issue:
(1) Margaret (alias Margarita) Barron (b. c.1795), born about 1795; married 1st, 7 November 1814 at St James, Westminster (Middx), Henry Charles Hervey Aston (1792-1821) of Aston Hall (Ches.) and had issue one son and one daughter; married 2nd, Le Chevalier de Poggenpohl, secretary to the Prince Lieven, Russian ambassador in London and later Russian Chargé d'Affaires in Spain; married 3rd, Lt-Gen. Le Chevalier de Montenegro, chamberlain to HRH Infante Don Francisco de Paulo of Spain; she probably died in Spain but her date of death is unknown;
(2) Catalina Barron (1804-23), born 7 February 1804; died unmarried, 23 June 1823;
(3) Pierce Marcus Barron (1806-79) (q.v.);
(4) William Eustace Barron (1808-25), born 16 May 1808; died unmarried at Malaga (Spain), 7 November 1825.
He lived latterly at Cadiz (Spain).
He died at Cadiz, 1814. His widow married 2nd, Col. Le Chevalier Fitzgerald, of the Spanish Service; her date of death is unknown.

Barron, Pierce Marcus (1806-79). Elder son of William Barron (1745-1814) and his wife Margarita Archibald Power, born 3 July 1806. JP (from 1833) and DL for Co. Waterford; High Sheriff of Co. Waterford, 1868. He was appointed an Assistant Poor Law Commissioner for Ireland, 1847. He married, 9 October 1824, Catherine (k/a Kate) Lucinda (b. c.1805-70) (whose sister married Manuel de Godoy, 2nd Prince di Bassano, a Spanish-Italian aristocrat), daughter of Laurence Crowe of St. Stephen's Green, Dublin, and had issue:
(1) Pierce Eustace Laurence Aloysius Barron (1826-96) (q.v.);
(2) Joseph Manuel Barron (1827-92), born 31 May 1827; employed at The Admiralty; married, 11 April 1849, Elizabeth Mary Seymour, second daughter of Thomas Soulsby of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and had issue six sons and one daughter; died 18 May 1892;
(3) William Arthur Archbold Barron (c.1831-66), born about 1831; emigrated to Mexico, probably to work in the family business there; died at Jelisco, near Tepic (Mexico), 6 October 1866;
(4) A daughter (b. & d. 1833), born 30 July 1833 but died in infancy, 20 November 1833;
(5) twin, A child (b. & d. 1834), born 27 June 1834 but died the same day;
(6) twin, A child (b. & d. 1834), born 27 June 1834 but died the same day;
(7) Catherine (k/a Kate) Lucinda Mary Anne Barron (1835-1912), born 11 August 1835; she married, 1857 at Boulogne-Sur-Mer, the  Viscount de Cosepigny, but the marriage was annulled by French Law in 1858, although it apparently remained valid in England; she lived later with her youngest brother; died 24 January 1911; will proved 2 March 1911 (estate £6,303) and 5 December 1916;
(8) Margeurita Louisa Barron (1838-1912), born 1838; a nun of the Carmelite monastery of the Incarnation, Hampton (Co, Dublin) as Sr. Mary Francis Xavier of the Infant Jesus; died 1912;
(9) Arthur Hervey Aston Barron (c.1840-82), born about 1840; married, 17 August 1876, Maria, eldest daughter and co-heiress of Michael Donovan of Dublin; died at Westport (Co. Mayo), 23 April 1882 and was buried at Aughavale Cemetery, Waterford;
(10) Maria Matilda Barron (c.1840-1910), born about 1840; married, 1867, John O'Keefe MP (1827-77) of Dungurvan (Co. Waterford) but had no issue; lived subsequently with her youngest brother; said to have died in 1910;
(11) Emma Eliza Mary Clare Barron (c.1842-90), born about 1842; married, 28 November 1871 at Belmont Park, Vincent Scully (1846-1927) of Mantlehill House (Co. Tipperary), son of Vincent Scully QC MP, and had issue three sons and three daughters; died 7 April 1890;
(12) John Marcus Fitzgerald Barron (1844-80), of Georgestown, born 18 May 1844; JP for Co. Waterford; married 1st, 30 April 1868 at Tramore (Co. Waterford), Mary Madeline (d. 1872), youngest daughter of William Henry Barron of Lacken (Co. Waterford) and had issue one son; married 2nd, 28 September 1875 at St Michael, Kingstown (Co. Dublin), Margaret Kate (d. 1932), daughter of Nicholas King MD of Dublin and of Ards (Co. Kerry), and had issue one daughter (who died young in 1885); died at Turret House, Tramore (Co. Waterford), 19 July 1880; will proved 14 August 1880 (effects under £100); his widow lived latterly in London and died 10 May 1932;
(13) Rev. Eustace John Fitzgerald Barron (c.1847-1916), born about 1847; educated at Middle Temple (admitted 1869; called 1871); barrister-at-law; but was ordained in the Roman Catholic church and was subsequently priest of St Peter, Gloucester (Glos), 1878-94, canon of Clifton Cathedral, 1894-1916 and priest of Weston-super-Mare (Som.), 1898-1916; he died 3 November 1916; administration of goods granted 26 June 1916 (estate £942).
He lived at Glenview by 1833 (an early 19th century house which he probably built and may have sold c.1850) and later at Killowen (Co. Waterford) and Belmont Park, which he purchased from Sir Henry Winston Barron, 1st bt. He had a town house at 102 St Stephen's Green, Dublin.
He died at Belmont Park, 2 August 1879; his will was proved 7 January 1880 (effects under £3,000). His wife died 12 January 1870 and was buried in the family vault in Ferrybank Catholic Church.

Barron, Pierce Eustace Laurence Aloysius (1826-96). Eldest son of Pierce Marcus Barron (1806-79) and his wife Catherine Lucinda, daughter of Laurence Crowe of St. Stephen's Green, Dublin, born 22 February 1826. Educated at Downside, London University (matriculated 1845), Lincoln's Inn (admitted 1848) and King's Inns, Dublin (called 1851). Barrister-at-law. An officer in the Waterford Light Infantry (Lt., 1855). He married, 1864 in Mexico, Ellen Clerke Cecilia (1833-1914), second daughter and co-heiress of Capt. Edward Abney (1788-1839) of Measham Hall (Derbys), and had issue:
(1) Cecilia de Meysam Constance Josephine Barron (1865-1946), born in Mexico, 1865; married, 4 March 1897, Francois Celestin Fidele Fourmaintraux (d. 1941), son of Francois Fourmaintraux and had issue four sons and three daughters; died 30 April 1946;
(2) Percy Alphonse Abney Joseph Frederick Barron (1867-1942), of Manoir de Menneville, Echingen (France), born 18 July 1867; educated in France; married, 2 June 1903, Marie Adele Ernestine Francoise (d. 1957), daughter of Paul Gaultier de Bruillac de Lespinay of St. Malo (France), and had issue two sons and three daughters; died 30 August 1942;
(3) Ernest Edward de Wivelslie Joseph Barron (1871-1941), of Manoir de Menneville, Echingen (France), born 12 November 1871; educated in France; married, 7 January 1905, Evelyn Maud Innes Thompson (d. 1962) of London, and had issue six sons and six daughters; died 25 March 1941.
He inherited Belmont Park from his father in 1879, but sold it to the Brothers of Charity in 1883.
He died 23 May 1896; administration of goods granted 14 October 1913 (estate 2,528). His widow died in France, 21 April 1914.

Barron, John (1750-1800). Fourth son of Pierse Barron (b. c.1690; fl. 1726) and his wife Mary, daughter of Thomas FitzGerald of Kilconavey, born 1750. In 1775, he was a tanner in Waterford. He married Mary, daughter of Michael Maddock of Waterford, tanner, and had issue:
(1) James Barron (c.1771-1857) (q.v.);

(2) Eustace Barron; married ?Anne (d. 1839), sister of Joseph Power of Dangan (Co. Kilkenny?) and Seafield (Co. Waterford) but died without issue;
(3) John Barron of Annestown;
(4) Pierse Eustace Barron (d. 1826) of Hermitage; died unmarried at Dungarvan, after a few days illness with a sudden fever, 11 May 1826;
(5) William Barron, of Lacken (Co. Waterford); married [forename unknown] Cooper of Ballynure Castle and had issue two sons and two daughters;
(6) Edward Barron, of Georgestown; married [forename unknown] Alley, and had issue four sons and three daughters;
(7) Catherine Barron; married Lt-Gen. Halliday;
(8) Mary Anne Barron; married Patrick Sheehan MD (d. c.1852) of Waterford, physician.
He inherited Georgestown from his father.
He died in 1800. His wife's date of death is unknown.

Barron, James (c.1771-1857). Only son of John Barron (1750-1800) of Georgestown House and his wife Mary, daughter of Michael Maddock of Waterford, tanner. JP for Co. Waterford. He married, c.1810, Mary (b. c.1790), daughter of William Grant of Montalto, Woodstown (Co. Waterford), and had issue:
(1) John Barron; died unmarried in the lifetime of his father;
(2) Pierse Eustace Barron; died unmarried in the lifetime of his father;
(3) Catherine Barron (c.1815-70); inherited Georgestown from her father; married James Sherlock Harper (d. 1868) of Waterford, wine merchant; died in Waterford, 20 November, and was buried at Kill RC church, 27 November 1870.
He inherited Georgestown from his father. At his death it passed to his daughter and her husband, and after their deaths to his first cousin once removed, John Marcus Barron (1844-80).
He died aged 86 on 11 June 1857. His wife's date of death is unknown.

Barron family of Glenanna, Belmont Park, and Woodstown


Barron, John (1718-1800). Third son of Pierse Barron (b. c.1690; fl. 1726) and his wife Mary, daughter of Thomas FitzGerald of Kilconavey, born 1718. He married, 1750, Martha, daughter of Lawrence Donovan of Waterford, and had issue:
(1) Pierse Barron (1752-1811) (q.v.);
(2) John Barron (1754-97) (q.v.);
(3) William Barron (c.1761-1832), of Carrickbarrahane and later of Roanmore, nr. Waterford; active in the cause of Catholic and O'Connellite politics in Co. Waterford; JP for Co. Waterford; married, 1803, Eliza (c.1780-1841), daughter of Robert Netterville, and had issue four sons and three daughters; died of cholera at Tramore (Co. Waterford), October 1832;
(4) Edward Barron; died without issue;
(5) Luke Barron; died without issue;
(6) Stephen Barron; died unmarried;
(7) Margaret Barron; married James Harper;
(8) Catherine Barron; married William Foley of Knockalara, Cappoquin (Co. Waterford);
(9) Bridget Barron; married Edmund Stafford of Ballynure (Co. Wexford).
He inherited Ballydurn and Ballyneal (Co. Waterford) from his father.
He died in 1800. His wife's date of death is unknown.

Barron, Pierse (1752-1811). Eldest son of John Barron (1718-1800) of Ballyneal and his wife Martha, daughter of Lawrence Donovan, born 15 September 1752. Probably a merchant trading with England. He married, c.1788, Mary Anne (c.1760-1839), only child of Henry Winston of Fethard (Co. Tipperary), and had issue:
(1) Pierce Barron (d. 1817); inherited Ballyneal from his father in 1811, but died unmarried and without issue, when he was drowned at sea on the 'William and Mary' packet crossing from Bristol to Waterford, 25 October 1817;
(2) Sir Henry Winston Barron (1795-1872), 1st bt. (q.v.);
(3) John Winston Barron (1801-64), born 5 November 1801; stood instead of his brother in Co. Waterford for Parliament, 1830; an officer in the 17th Lancers and later the 71st Foot (Cornet, 1819; Lt., 1826; Capt., 1832; retired on half-pay, 1832); ADC to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, 1836-38; gentleman at large to the Lord Lieutenant, 1838-41; lived latterly at Pau (France); died unmarried at Boulogne (France), 12 January 1864;
(4) Rt. Rev. Edward Barron (1803-54), born 18 June 1803; educated at St Edmund's College, Ware (Herts), the Lycée Henri IV, Paris, Trinity College, Dublin (admitted 1820), St. John's College, Waterford, and the Propoganda College, Rome (DD, 1829); ordained a Roman Catholic priest at St Agatha, Rome, 1829; professor at St John's College, Waterford, 1829-36; pastor of St. Mary’s church, Philadelphia (USA), president of theological seminary of St. Charles Borromeo and vicar general of diocese of Philadelphia, 1836-41; missionary to Africa as bishop (in partibus) of Constantine and vicar apostolic of the two Guineas 1841–45; then returned to America as a missionary priest at Philadelphia, St. Louis and in Florida; he died of yellow fever, caught while attending to the sick, in Savannah, Georgia (USA), 12 September 1854;
(5) William Winston (later William Newell) Barron (1805-91) (q.v.);
(6) Margaret Barron (d. 1817); drowned at sea on the 'William and Mary' packet crossing from Bristol to Waterford, 25 October 1817;
(7) Matilda Barron (d. 1817)drowned at sea on the 'William and Mary' packet crossing from Bristol to Waterford, 25 October 1817;
(8) Catherine Barron (d. 1817)drowned at sea on the 'William and Mary' packet crossing from Bristol to Waterford, 25 October 1817;
(9) Eliza Barron (d. 1817)drowned at sea on the 'William and Mary' packet crossing from Bristol to Waterford, 25 October 1817;
(10) Anna Maria Barron.
He inherited Ballyneal from his father in 1800.
He died 11 May and was buried at St Mary on the Quay RC church, Bristol, 31 May 1811. His widow died in Dublin, 1 November 1839.

Sir Henry Winston Barron, 1st bt.,
from the plaque on his monument.
Barron, Sir Henry Winston (1795-1872), 1st bt. Second son of Pierse Barron (1752-1811) and his wife Anna, only child of Henry Winston, born 15 October 1795. Educated at Trinity College, Dublin (admitted 1814). A pugnacious politician whose popularity with the limited electorate of Waterford city and county swung wildly over his many decades at the centre of local affairs. He purchased the radical newspaper, The Waterford Chronicle, in 1824 and made it a mouthpiece for Catholic and O'Connellite politics, although he later parted company with O'Connell over the issue of the repeal of the Act of Union. In the election campaign of 1829-30 he stood as a candidate for Waterford but withdrew before the poll when the extent of his unpopularity became clear (but not before fighting a duel with the Tory candidate, Lord George Beresford). He was more successful at the election of 1832 and was Whig MP for Waterford, 1832-1841, 1842-1847, 1848-1852, 1865-1868 and 1869-1870, although many of his elections were bitterly fought and some were the subject of parliamentary inquiriesHe represented the city on a liberal and pro-Union platform after 1835. He was also a JP and DL for Co. Waterford and served as High Sheriff of Co. Waterford, 1858. He was created a baronet, 18 October 1841. He travelled extensively in Europe and published Notes on education in Germany and Holland (1840), based on a tour he undertook of schools and universities in those countries in 1839. He married 1st, 29 April 1822 at the British Embassy in Paris, Anna Leigh Guy (1791-1852), only daughter of Sir Gregory Page-Turner, 3rd bt., MP of Battlesden Park (Beds) and Ambrosden House (Oxon), and 2nd, 1 August 1863 at St. George, Hanover Sq., London, Augusta Anne (1824-81), youngest daughter of Gen. Lord Charles Henry Somerset, second son of the 5th Duke of Beaufort, and had issue:
(1.1) Sir Henry Page-Turner Barron (1824-1900), 2nd bt. (q.v.);
(1.2) Emily Frances Barron (1826-81), born in Paris, 12 November 1826; married, 10 February 1852 at St George, Hanover Sq., London, Frederick Charles Polhill (later Polhill-Turner) of Howbury Hall, Renhold (Beds), only son of Capt. Polhill MP, and had issue; buried at Renhold, 30 August 1881.
He presumably inherited Ballyneal from his elder brother in 1818. He purchased Belmont House, Ferrybank by 1824 and later renamed it Barroncourt. He built Glenanna (originally Glenanna Cottage) and the folly gatehouse in its grounds in about 1819.
He died in London, 19 April 1872 and was buried in the family vault under the tower of Ferrybank RC church. His first wife died 22 November 1852. His widow died 27 December 1881.

Sir Henry Page-Turner Barron, 2nd bt.
from his monument
Barron, Sir Henry Page-Turner (1824-1900), 2nd bt. Only son of Sir Henry Winston Barron (1795-1872), 1st bt., and his first wife, Anna Leigh Guy, only daughter of Sir Gregory Page-Turner, 3rd bt., of Battlesden Park (Beds) and Ambrosden House (Oxon), born 27 December 1824. Educated at Prior Park College, Bath but did not attend university and went straight into HM Diplomatic Service, where he served 1840-90. After junior postings in Berne, Turin, Florence and Berlin, he was Secretary of Legation at Lisbon, 1858-61, Brussels, 1861-66, 1871-83 and secretary of Embassy at Constantinople, 1866-71; he finished his career as Minister-Resident to the King of Wurttemberg in Stuttgart, 1883-90. He was author of some forty-five official reports on Belgium, Portugal, Turkey and Wurttemberg. He succeeded his father as 2nd baronet, 19 April 1872 and was appointed CMG, 1882. He was unmarried and without issue.
He inherited Glenanna from his father in 1872, and owned some 4,680 acres in Co. Waterford in 1876. At his death his Irish estates passed to his first cousin once removed, Edward Alphonse Winston Barron (1876-1939) (q.v.) and his property in England to his nephew, Cecil Charles Polhill-Turner (later Polhill).
He died at Stuttgart (Germany), 13 September 1900, when the baronetcy became extinct; his will was proved on 6 December 1900 (estate in England, £306,473 and in Ireland, £6,238), and made large charitable bequests totalling about £30,000, including money to complete the rebuilding of Ferrybank RC church (Co. Waterford) and the donation of ten Dutch old master paintings to the National Gallery of Ireland.

Barron, William Winston (later William Newell) (1805-91). Fifth son of Pierse Barron (1752-1811) and his wife Anna, only child of Henry Winston, born 28 January 1805. Educated at St Edmund's College, Ware (Herts), the Lycée Henry IV in Paris, Trinity College, Dublin (admitted 1824: LLD by 1860) and Kings Inns, Dublin (admitted 1826; called 1830). Barrister-at-law (later QC). Assistant Barrister for Co. Offaly (from 1841); County Court judge in Co. Kerry (where he once found himself obliged by a long-forgotten Irish statute to sentence a man to death for stealing a goat) and Co. Monaghan (from, 1870); JP for Co. Down from 1849. As a young man he was a noted O’Connellite and a supporter of the repeal of the Act of Union. A member of the Royal Dublin Society from 1871. After his marriage he commonly used the name William Newell Barron. He married, 15 February 1831 at Lismore Cathedral, Mary Frances St. John (c.1809-78), daughter and co-heir of Capt. John Newell RN of King Hill, Clonduff (Co. Down), and had issue:
(1) Pierse Newell Barron (later Barron-Newell) (1834-1906) (q.v.);
(2) Mary Ann (alias Marianne) Barron (c.1837-1919); married S. Bradshaw; living at Graystones (Co. Wicklow) in 1914; will proved 13 March 1919;
(3) Frances Anastasia Barron (1842-1913), born 6 July 1842; married, 16 June 1868 at St Peter, Dublin, Capt. William Henry Farmar JP (1831-76), only son of William Russell Farmar of Bloomfield  (Co. Wexford), and had issue four sons and two daughters; died at Hove (Sussex), 15 July 1913; will proved 25 November 1913 (estate £705);
(4) Phoebe Elizabeth Barron (c.1845-1914); married, 17 January 1870 at St. Peter, Dublin, John McKie of Glasgow, merchant, only son of John McKie of South Lodge (Ayrs.); lived latterly in Scarborough; died 4 March 1914; will confirmed in Scotland, 19 June 1914 and sealed in England, 29 July 1914;
(5) Emily Matilda Barron (c.1847-1915); living at Hove (Sussex) in 1914; died unmarried, 4 February 1915; administration of goods granted 18 March 1915 (estate in England £836 and in Ireland, £366);
(6) Charlotte Clementina Barron (1845-1933), born 26 January 1845; married, 10 December 1874 at St Peter Dublin, as his second wife, William Morton Woodroffe JP (1818-81) of Ballyraggett and Ballysaggartmore (Co. Waterford), and had issue one son and two daughters; lived latterly at Hove (Sussex); died 18 December 1933; will proved 1 March 1934 (estate £5,883).
He inherited King Hill, Clonduff (Co. Down) and 18 Fitzwilliam Sq., Dublin in right of his wife before 1837, but let King Hill from 1867.
He died at King Hill, 3 June and was buried at Maghera near Castlewellan (Co. Down), 4 June 1891; his will was proved 13 August 1891 (estate £1,608). His wife died in Dublin, 16 October 1878.

Barron (later Barron-Newell), Pierse Newell (1834-1905). Only son of William Winston Barron (1805-91) and his wife Mary Frances St John, daughter and co-heir of Capt. John Newell RN of King Hill (Co. Down), born 27 January and baptised at St Andrew's RC church, Dublin, 25 February 1834. Said to have been educated at Ushaw College and Trinity College, Dublin (though he does not appear in the Alumni volume). He took the additional name Newell before 1855. An officer in the Waterford Artillery Militia (2nd Lt., 1857; Lt., 1858). In 1879 he was acting as agent to his cousin, Sir Henry P-T Barron; JP for Waterford; Guardian of the Waterford Poor Law Union and Governor of the Waterford District Lunatic Asylum. In middle age he was a competent lawn tennis player. He was apparently declared bankrupt on 21 April 1882, but nothing more is heard of this and he must have paid his debts and been discharged before the first scheduled hearing the following month. He married, 6 June 1867 at Rathkeale (Co. Limerick), Mary (1847-1924), second surviving daughter of Lt-Col. John White of Belmont Castle and Nantenan (Co. Limerick), and had issue:
(1) Eleanor Mary Josephine Barron-Newell (1868-1963), born 17 March 1868; a sister of charity of St. Vincent de Paul, Hereford; died 12 November 1963; will proved 19 June 1964 (estate £394);
(2) Louisa Geraldine St. John Barron-Newell (1871-1956), born 11 January 1871; married, Jan-Mar 1902, as his second wife, Robert Herbert Glasspool (1867-1927), railway hotel manager, and had issue one daughter; died in London, 25 March 1956; will proved 8 May 1956 (estate £2,416);
(3) Henrietta Maria Barron-Newell (b. & d. 1874); died in infancy, 3 March 1874;
(4) Mary Frances Barron-Newell (1875-1962), born 26 October 1875; lived with her brother in London and inherited his house in Lyall St., London, where she died unmarried, 14 March 1962; her will was proved 21 May 1962 (estate £166,767);
(5) Edward Alphonse Winston Barron-Newell (1876-1939) (q.v.);
(6) Maurice Gerard Barron-Newell (1883-85), born 1883; died young of meningitis, 11 January 1885.
He lived at St John's Hill, Waterford, and inherited King Hill, Clonduff (Co. Down) from his father in 1891. His widow lived after his death with her son at Woodstown and in London.
He died in St. Helier (Jersey), 19 September and was buried in the Almorah Cemetery, St. Helier, 22 September 1905; his will has not been traced. His widow died at Seale (Surrey), 10 September 1924; her will was proved 18 October 1924 (estate £3,813).

Barron-Newell (later Barron), Edward Alphonse Winston (1876-1939). Only son of Pierse Barron (later Barron-Newell) (1834-1906) and his wife Mary, second surviving daughter of Lt-Col. John White of Belmont Castle and Nantenan (Co. Limerick), born 25 October 1876. Said to have been educated at Stonyhurst College and Trinity College, Cambridge (although he does not appear in the Alumni volumes). He seems to have dropped the additional surname Newell soon after the death of his father in 1905. He was JP and DL for Co. Down, and an officer in the 12th Lancers (2nd Lt., 1914; Lt., 1916; resigned 1919) during the First World War, attached to HQ of 5th Cavalry Brigade, 1916-19 (MC, 1918). He was unmarried and without issue.
He inherited Glenanna (Co. Waterford) from his first cousin once removed, Sir Henry Page-Turner Barron, 2nd bt., in 1900, and purchased Woodstown in 1903. He inherited King Hill, Clonduff (Co. Down) from his father in 1906, but sold it in 1922 to John Joseph McPolin. He also had a town house in London (7 Lyall St. SW1).
He died 15 February 1939; his will was proved 18 April 1939 (estate in England, £53,926 and in Northern Ireland £400) and 16 January 1940 (estate in the Republic of Ireland, £2,179).

Barron, John (1754-97), Second son of John Barron (1718-1800) of Ballydurne or Ballyneale, born 1754. He married, 1789, his cousin Mary Anne, daughter of Pierse Barron of Carrickbarrahane [for whom see above], and had issue:
(1) Pierse George Barron (1792-1864) (q.v.)
He inherited Carrickbarrahane in right of his wife.
He is said to have died in 1797. His wife's date of death is unknown.

Barron, Pierse George (1792-1864). Only child of John Barron (1754-97) and his wife Mary Anne, daughter of Pierse Barron of Carrickbarrahane, born posthumously, 1792. JP and DL for Co. Waterford; High Sheriff of Co. Waterford, 1835. He was touted as a possible candidate for Parliament in Co. Waterford in 1829 and stood unsuccessfully in the borough of Dungarvan in 1834 and 1837, the latter being bitterly fought contests which were the subject of Parliamentary enquiries. He was subsequently employed as a stipendiary resident magistrate in Co. Mayo and Co. Limerick. Vice-President of the Waterford Literary and Scientific Institution. He married, 25 January 1815 at Cheltenham (Glos), Katherine Elizabeth (c.1795-1865), eldest daughter of Cornelius Bolton MP of Faithlegg House (Co. Waterford), and had issue, possibly among others who died young:
(1) Eliza Mary Barron (c.1817-83), born about 1817; apparently inherited Newtown House, Waterford, from her parents and died unmarried there, 25 October 1883; administration of goods granted 22 November 1883 (effects £289);
(2) Catherine Barron (d. 1826); died young, at Belmont House, March/April 1826;
(3) Katherine (k/a Kate) Elizabeth Barron (1829-1909), born 14 June 1829; married, 17 December 1850 at St Michael, Limerick, Capt. Denis Godley CB (d. 1890), of 74th Highlanders and Lettra, Ballycroy (Co. Mayo), secretary to the Land Commission 1881-88, third or fourth son of John Godley of Killegar (Co. Leitrim), but had no issue; died 9 December 1909;
(4) Mary Anne (k/a Minnie) Barron (1831-1914), born November 1831; lived with her unmarried sisters at Newtown House, Waterford, at later at St Mary's Cottage, South Ascot (Berks); died 12 May 1914; will proved 27 July 1914 (estate in England £1,496 and in Ireland, £395);
(5) Georgina (k/a Georgie) Alice Barron (c.1835-1905), born about 1835; lived with her unmarried sisters at Newtown House, Waterford, and later at St Mary's Cottage, South Ascot (Berks); died 25 April 1905; her will was proved 3 August 1905 (effects £596).
He inherited Carrickbarrahane from his father in 1797. He apparently sold it to the Osbornes of Newtown Anner, who built the present house. He seems to have lived in the 1820s with his cousin Henry Winston Barron at Belmont, and later at Eastlands, Dungarvan (Co. Waterford), in George St., Limerick, and at Newtown House, Waterford.
He died 10 December 1864; his will was proved 31 December 1864 (effects under £4,000). His widow died 27 December 1865 and was buried at Stradbally (Co. Waterford); administration of her goods was granted to her unmarried daughters, 25 January 1866 (effects under £450).

Principal sources

Burke's Irish Family Records, 1976, pp. 62-64; Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, 1874, pp. 73-74; E.A. Heggs, 'The nature and development of Liberal protestantism in Waterford, 1800-42', National University of Ireland, Maynooth PhD thesis, 2008; 

Location of archives

No significant archive is known to survive.

Coat of arms

Ermine, on a saltire gules, five annulets.


Can you help?


  • Can anyone provide images of Carrickbarrahane or Glenanna?
  • Can anyone complete the ownership history of Woodstown House?
  • I should be most grateful if anyone can provide photographs or portraits of people whose names appear in bold above, and who are not already illustrated.
  • As always, any additions or corrections to the account given above will be gratefully received and incorporated.

Revision and acknowledgements

This post was first published 2 April 2020.

Wednesday, 25 March 2020

(410) Barrington of Glenstal Castle, baronets

Barrington of Glenstal Castle
This family were established in Limerick as clockmakers and later copper founders and pewterers by 1691. Samuel Barrington (d. 1693), clockmaker, was buried in Limerick Cathedral, where he is commemorated by a monument erected by his son, Benjamin Barrington, who was sheriff of Limerick city in 1714. The strong tradition in the family is that Samuel's father, Francis Barrington (d. 1683), the first member of the family to be buried in Limerick, was a younger son of the Barringtons of Hatfield Broad Oak and came to Ireland as a Colonel in Oliver Cromwell's army (Cromwell being a first cousin of the Hatfield Barringtons). That sounds plausible enough, but unfortunately there seems to be no record of a Francis Barrington in the Cromwellian forces. Sir Francis Barrington (c.1561-1628) of Hatfield did have a son, Francis, but he was a Turkey merchant in London who died in 1660, and his son, also Francis, lived in Aleppo as agent for his father's business and probably predeceased him. So this direct connection to the Hatfield baronets seems, at best, highly unlikely. In 1863, H.J. Hore suggested an alternative connection, through a Captain George Barrington, said to be scion of the Hatfield Barringtons, who is recorded in 1599 as having been granted lands at Coulinaght (Co. Leix). He was probably the father of Alexander Barrington (d. 1635) of Timoge, who in turn was the father of a Francis Barrington, who was an MP in the Irish Parliament and is probably to be identified with the man buried at Limerick in 1683. Again, however, the evidence for a link to the Hatfield family is weak, since no George Barrington is recorded in the relevant generations of their pedigree, and the assertion of a connection relies upon one statement in the Carew papers.

We are on firmer ground with Samuel Barrington's descendants, who remained in Limerick for four generations. His son Benjamin Barrington was an alderman of the city and its sheriff in 1714, and seems to have died about 1733, when his will was proved. His son was another Benjamin Barrington (1697-c.1769), who married Ann Waltho (1700-52) in 1724 and had four sons and three daughters. Ann's mother had been born a Croker, and Benjamin named his eldest son Croker Barrington (1727-71), but although he married he had no issue. The family line was therefore continued by Benjamin's second son, Matthew Barrington, who was baptised in Limerick in 1728 and who Burke's Peerage and Baronetage says died in 1765, leaving an only surviving son, Joseph Barrington (1764-1846), with whom the genealogy below begins.

In the 1790s, Joseph was described as a pewterer, but he was successful enough in business to send three of his sons to study at Trinity College, Dublin and the Kings Inns in Dublin, where they qualified as lawyers. By 1818, when he was aged just thirty, the eldest son, Matthew Barrington (1788-1861) was in a position to lease lands from Lord Carbery, and it was probably always his intention to build a new country house on this property. At this time, his official appointments gave him a regular income which may have been as much as £15,000 a year, so he could afford to build on a generous scale. Knowing of the family tradition of a close link with the Barringtons of Hatfield Broad Oak, he may have hoped that in the event of the death of Sir Fitzherbert Barrington, the 10th baronet of Hatfield, without known heirs (which happened in 1832), his father would be able to claim that title. When this proved not to be the case, he decided instead to lobby for a new grant.
Barrington's Hospital, Limerick, designed by Frederick Darley
and built in 1829-31.
Through his legal work, he was well connected in government circles and he was probably assured of a generally sympathetic response to such a request, but he evidently decided that a piece of prominent philanthropy would help his case, and he therefore put up the majority of the money to build and endow a new hospital in Limerick with his father and brothers. The gift was made in 1829 and Barringtons Hospital opened in 1831: later the same year the desired new baronetcy was conferred (at Matthew's special request) on his father.


Although schemes for a new house at Glenstal were under consideration by 1822, nothing was done until about 1836 when a design by William Bardwell was chosen and construction of Glenstal Castle began. All the designs that were considered for the house were in the romantic castle style, and Matthew clearly saw himself as the rightful inheritor of the ancient lineage of the Barringtons, and wanted to project an appropriately baronial image to the world. When he allowed his architect to sign his work with a prominent inscription round one of the towers, 'Bardwell Me Fecit 1839', the figure 8 was deliberately made narrow and spindly so that at first sight the date reads 1139! 

In 1840 Matthew Barrington purchased the freehold of his lands from Lord Carbery, securing his title, although this led to many years of expensive litigation with Carbery, who thought he had got a raw deal. Sir Joseph Barrington died in 1846 and Matthew became the 2nd baronet. His income in later years was more uncertain, being dependent on fees and profits from the railway company speculations that occupied most of his time, and construction work at Glenstal was twice interrupted by a shortage of funds, and was indeed never completed to the original scheme. When he died in 1861, Sir Matthew was succeeded in turn by his two sons, Sir William Hartigan Barrington (1815-72), 3rd bt. and Sir Croker Barrington (1817-90), 4th bt. Sir Croker was a very busy solicitor in Dublin and it is not at all clear that he ever really lived at Glenstal Castle: before he inherited he had a modest house on the estate at Clonkeen, which he may have continued to use in preference to the castle.

Whatever the attractions of feudal lordship had been to Sir Matthew, the Barringtons had always been liberal landlords (Sir Matthew was a friend of Daniel O'Connell) and during the famine time they had treated their tenants more generously than most. Sir Charles Burton Barrington (1848-1943), 5th bt., who inherited in 1890, evidently felt comfortable living at Glenstal, but in 1921 the realities of the Irish struggle for independence came to the gates of Glenstal in the most tragic way when his only daughter was caught up in the IRA ambush of a senior policeman with whom she was travelling, and both were killed. Not surprisingly, Sir Charles responded by moving to England with his family. He offered Glenstal to the Free State government as an official residence for a future president of Ireland, but after serious consideration it was rejected as being too far from Dublin. In 1927 he sold the house to Monsignor James Ryan, who donated it to the Benedictine order, which converted the house into an abbey and school, which has added some further buildings around the site. The family baronetcy passed in turn to Sir Charles's two sons, but since neither of them had surviving male issue, in 2003 it was inherited by a distant cousin living in Canada, who descends from a younger son of the 1st baronet.


Glenstal Castle, Co. Limerick


The house was built for Sir Matthew Barrington, 2nd bt., who bought part of the Limerick estate of Lord Carbery in 1818, and soon afterwards built Barrington's Bridge to link the area to Limerick. During the 1830s, he sought proposals for a castle-style house from the Pain brothers in Limerick, William O'Hara in Dublin, and even Decimus Burton, but rejected their proposals, which were derived from the castle-style houses of John Nash and Sir Jeffrey Wyatville (especially his alterations to Windsor Castle). It seems likely that Barrington wanted something more innovative, or at least more striking. In the end he turned to a minor English architect, William Bardwell (1795-1890) who had been a pupil of George Wyatt and George Maddox before studying in Paris for two years. It is not known how Bardwell came to Barrington's attention, but it was perhaps through his unsuccessful but widely publicised entry for the Palace of Westminster competition in 1835, which was intended to embody all the different styles of medieval architecture from Norman to Tudor. The neo-Norman elements of the design offered the novelty Barrington had felt was missing in the earlier Gothic proposals. The concept evolved through several designs in 1836 but was based on English rather than Irish precedents and is very reminiscent of Thomas Hopper's neo-Norman houses: Penrhyn Castle of 1821-37 in north Wales and Gosford Castle (Co. Armagh)

Glenstal Castle: a perspective drawing of the house proposed by William Bardwell, viewed from the east. Image: Glenstal Abbey

Glenstal Castle: perspective drawing of the house proposed by William Badwell, viewed from the south-west. Image: Glenstal Abbey

The building was designed to be approached from the east, from where it would appear to be quadrangular, although in fact it consists of only two ranges. It is the stage-set for a medieval pageant, designed to suggest a knightly lineage that the Barringtons did not, in fact, possess. Construction seems to have begun in 1837 and the round tower was finished in 1839, but thereafter work proceeded fitfully, with interruptions caused by shortage of funds and legal distractions. Bardwell visited the site in 1840 but was in England most of the time, and supervision was delegated to the clerk of works and the craftsmen on site. The first stoppage occurred in 1840 or 1841, and in 1843 Bardwell provided a new specification and estimate for a somewhat simplified scheme. Work resumed in 1846 or 1847 under the supervision of William Dargan of Dublin, who was probably known to Barrington through his work as a railway contractor. Work stopped again in 1849, leaving the shell of the picture gallery and the drawing room on the south front and the entrance hall behind finished, but with the keep hardly started. In 1853, Barrington made a final effort to complete the castle, paying off Bardwell and turning to Joshua Hargrave of Cork, who proceeded with a limited version of Bardwell's scheme: the planned octagon tower at the western end of the south-west front, and the range linking this to the keep, were omitted, and the plan of the keep was altered to include a dining room.

Glenstal Castle: the south front of the house today. Image: John Armagh.
At first, much of the carved stonework was cut in England by W.T. Kelsey of Brompton (Middx), and send across to Ireland by sea, but in the later phases, local craftsmen from the Limerick area were used and the work became more clearly influenced by Ireland's Romanesque heritage: the change may have been urged by Lord Dunraven, a patriotic antiquarian who was both a business acquaintance of Sir Matthew Barrington and a fellow Limerick resident. The front door is flanked by figures of Henry II and Queen Eleanor, who were such a warring couple that one wonders if they were chosen in ignorance: the Queen holds a scroll on which is inscribed the Irish welcome, Cead mile failte. Some of the doorways inside are copied from identifiable Irish Romanesque sources, such as Killaloe Cathedral and Clonmacnoise. The staircase and the gallery to which it leads are in dark oak, elaborately carved with Celtic motifs, leaves and animals by trainees in a wood-carving school run by the daughters of the house, and dated as late as 1888. 

The Barrington family were liberal landlords (Sir Matthew was a friend of Daniel O'Connell) and were noted for their efforts to provide employment and reduce or cancel rents during the famine years. Although they seem to have been generally popular in the Limerick area, tragedy struck in 1921 when Sir Charles only daughter, Winifred, was killed with a local police inspector in an IRA ambush close to Glenstal: he was the target, she was 'collateral damage' in the chilling modern phrase. Sir Charles clearly decided that the family could not stay in Ireland and he bought a much smaller house near Southampton to which the family decamped in about 1925. He offered Glenstal to the Irish Free State government as an official residence for a future President of Ireland, but not unreasonably this was turned down as being too far from Dublin. The house was sold instead to Monsignor James Ryan for a nominal £2,000, and he gifted it to a Benedictine community at Maredsous in Belgium which wished to open an Irish daughter house. The first monks arrived in 1927 and opened a school as well as starting a monastic community, which was elevated to abbatial rank in 1957. The house continues to fulfil these purposes and is now known as Glenstal Abbey.

Descent: Sir Joseph Barrington (1764-1846), 1st bt.; to son, Sir Matthew Barrington (1788-1861), 2nd bt.; to son, Sir William Hartigan Barrington (1815-72), 3rd bt.; to brother, Sir Croker Barrington (1817-90), 4th bt.; to son, Sir Charles Burton Barrington (1848-1943), 5th bt., who sold 1927 to Monsignor James Ryan, who gave it to the Benedictine order.


Barrington family of Glenstal Castle, baronets



Sir Joseph Barrington, 1st bt.
Barrington, Sir Joseph (1764-1846), 1st bt. Only son of Matthew Barrington (1728-65) and his wife Jane, daughter of John Canter of Ballyvard, born 21 February 1764. He was a coppersmith and pewterer in Limerick by 1797, and seems to have later moved into property development, constructing Barrington's Quay and reclaiming land nearby for housing.  Founder, with his four surviving sons, of the Barrington Hospital in Limerick, which was built at a cost of some £4,000 in 1829-31. The project seems to have been substantially funded by his son Matthew, and in addition to its philanthropic purpose, was part of Matthew's campaign to secure a baronetcy for Joseph, which was rewarded when he was created a baronet, 30 September 1831. He married, 7 August 1787 at St Mary's R.C. Church, Limerick, Mary (d. 1829), daughter of Daniel Baggott of Limerick, bootseller, and had issue:
(1) Sir Matthew Barrington (1788-1861), 2nd bt. (q.v.);
(2) Michael Barrington (b. c.1790), born about 1790; died young;
(3) Daniel Barrington (1792-1842), born 14 October 1792; educated at Limerick and Kings Inns (admitted 1814); Clerk of the Crown in Limerick; married, 22 October 1829, Anne (d. 1892), daughter of Richard Williams of Drumcondra Castle (Co. Dublin) and had issue two sons (from the elder of whom the present baronet is descended) and two daughters; died 5 February 1842;
(4) Honoria Barrington (c.1795-1828), born about 1795; married, 23 July 1827 at St Michael, Limerick, Thomas Lloyd of Limerick; died in childbirth at Limerick, 16 July 1828;
(5) Croker Barrington (1797-1844), born 29 April and baptised at St John, Limerick, 30 April 1797; an officer in the Royal Navy (Midshipman by 1816; Lt., 1825); built Woodville House (later Tivoli) near Barrington's Quay, 1838, at a cost of £1,300; married, November 1840 at St Anne, Dublin, Margaret Emly (d. 1841), daughter of Henry Westropp Ross Lewin of Fort Fergus (Co. Clare) and had issue one son; died at Kilkee, 22 September 1844;
(6) Benjamin Barrington (b. c.1800), born about 1800; died in infancy;
(7) Benjamin Barrington (b. c.1802), born about 1802; died young;
(8) Joseph Barrington (1803-33), born 4 December 1803; died unmarried in Limerick about 3 October 1833;
(9) Samuel Barrington (1806-63), born 6 February and baptised at St John, Limerick, 23 February 1806; educated at Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1822; BA 1827; MA 1832) and Kings Inns, Dublin (admitted 1824; called 1828); barrister-at-law; died unmarried, 5 January 1863; administration of goods granted 21 March 1863 (effects under £1500);
(10) Jane Martha Barrington (1808-90), born 7 May and baptised at St John, Limerick, 17 May 1808; married, 10 February 1838 at St Peter, Dublin, Rev. George Edward Deacon (c.1809-86), Fellow of Corpus Christi College, Oxford and later vicar of Leek (Staffs), and had issue six sons; died 15 May 1890 and was buried at Leek; administration of goods granted 3 June 1890 (effects in England, £4,547; and in Ireland, £44);
(11) Mary Anne Barrington (1810-29), baptised at St John Limerick, 23 December 1810; died unmarried, 1829.
He lived in Limerick.
Sir Joseph died 10 January 1846 and was presumably buried in the family vault in Limerick Cathedral. His wife was buried there, 1 November 1829.

Barrington, Sir Matthew (1788-1861), 2nd bt. Eldest son of Sir Joseph Barrington (1764-1846), 1st bt. and his wife Mary, daughter of Daniel Baggott of Limerick, born 21 May and baptised at St Mary's R.C. church, Limerick, 27 May 1788. Educated at Limerick and Kings Inns, Dublin (admitted 1804). Solicitor in Limerick and Dublin; Crown Solicitor in Limerick, 1814-38 and for the Munster circuit, 1832-61; legal and parliamentary adviser to the Great Southern Railway and other railway companies. He succeeded his father as 2nd baronet, 10 January 1846. He was a Whig in politics and had an influential circle of friends, including Daniel O'Connell, and was noted as a humane landlord, who during the famine years cancelled some rents and arrears altogether. He married, 1 January 1814 at St George, Dublin, Charlotte (1796-1858), daughter of William Hartigan of Dublin, physician and professor of anatomy at Trinity College, Dublin, and had issue:
(1) Marian (alias Mary Anne) Barrington (1814-58), born about November 1814; married, 2 September 1841 at Wicklow, Thomas Williams (1810-90), stockbroker (who m2, 29 May 1860 at Ambleside (Westmld), Georgiana (c.1824-81), daughter of T.O. Lees of Monkstown (Co. Dublin), and widow of James Percival Graves), son of Richard Williams of Drumcondra Castle, but had no issue; died 30 April 1858;
(2) Sir William Hartigan Barrington (1815-72), 3rd bt. (q.v.);
(3) Sir Croker Barrington (1817-90), 4th bt. (q.v.);
(4) Elizabeth Ellen Barrington (1818-29), baptised at St Peter, Dublin, 5 August 1818; died young, 28 February 1829;
(5) Charlotte Hartney Barrington (c.1820-61), born about 1820; married, 24 June 1847 at Powerscourt (Co. Wicklow) Henry Barry (c.1808-1900), barrister, of Dublin, son of Robert Barry, and had issue three sons; died at Limerick, 19 January 1861;
(6) Jessy Barrington (c.1821-88), born about 1821; died unmarried, 31 May 1888;
(7) Olivia Barrington (1823-76), baptised at St Peter, Dublin, 17 April 1823; married, 1853, Rt Hon. George Augustus Chichester May (1815-92), Attorney-General for Ireland and later Lord Chief Justice for Ireland, son of Rev. Edward May, and had issue ten children; died 13/15 May 1876;
(8) Josephine Barrington (1826-68), baptised in Dublin, 20 August 1826; married, 17 August 1859 at Abington (Co. Limerick), Hewitt Poole Jellett QC (c.1825-1911), serjeant-at-laws; died 1 February 1868;
(9) Henrietta Victorine Barrington (1833-99), born 8 November 1833 and baptised at St Peter, Dublin, 4 January 1834; married, 15 January 1857 at St Peter, Dublin, William Richard Le Fanu (1816-94), railway engineer, of Summer Hill, Enniskerry (Co. Wicklow), son of Thomas Philip Le Fanu, Dean of Emly, and brother of Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, the author of ghost stories, and had issue eight sons and two daughters; died 29 July 1899.
Sir Matthew bought the estate on which Glenstal Castle was built in 1818 and commenced construction in 1837. Work continued intermittently until his death.
Sir Matthew died 31 March 1861 and was buried in the family vault in St Mary's Cathedral, Limerick; his elder son was granted administration of his goods, 15 July 1861 (effects under £4,000). His wife died 18 November 1858 and was buried in the same place.

Barrington, Sir William Hartigan (1815-72), 3rd bt. Elder son of Sir Matthew Barrington (1788-1861), 2nd bt., and his wife Charlotte, daughter of William Hartigan of Dublin, born 4 October and baptised at St Peter, Dublin, 14 October 1815. Educated at Trinity College, Cambridge (matriculated 1834; BA 1841) and Middle Temple (admitted 1834). JP for Co. Limerick and Co. Tipperary from 1841 and DL for Co. Limerick from 1848; High Sheriff of Co. Limerick, 1846-47. He succeeded his father as 3rd bt., 1 April 1861. He married, 14 March 1859 at St Peter, Dublin, Elizabeth Olivia (1834-1907), second daughter of Henry Darley of Wingfield (Co. Wicklow), and had issue:
(1) Charlotte Jessy Barrington (1866-1951), born in Dublin, 22 August 1866; married, 4 June 1901 at Abington (Co. Limerick), Rev. George Digby Scott (1865-1950), rector of Bray (Co. Wicklow) and Chancellor of Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin, son of James George Scott, archdeacon of Dublin, and had issue four daughters; died 12 August 1951;
(2) Maria Louisa Olivia Barrington (1868-1947), of Clonshavoy, Lisnagry (Co. Limerick), born 22 August 1868; died unmarried, 19 August 1947; will proved 26 November 1947 (estate £4,940).
Sir William inherited Glenstal Castle from his father in 1861.
Sir William died 14 April 1872; his will was proved 7 June 1872 (effects under £7,000). His widow died 17 May 1907; her will was proved 9 August 1907 (estate £7,265).

Barrington, Sir Croker (1817-90), 4th bt. Younger son of Sir Matthew Barrington (1788-1861), 2nd bt., and his wife Charlotte, daughter of William Hartigan of Dublin, born 12 July and baptised at St Peter, Dublin, 22 July 1817. Educated at Trinity College, Dublin (admitted 1834) and Kings Inns, Dublin (admitted 1833); admitted a solicitor, 1838. He was in partnership with his father in the firm of Barrington, Son & Jeffers (later Barrington & Sons) of Dublin, and acted for the Great Southern and Western Railway Company, the County Limerick Grand Jury, and the Earls of Limerick and Dunraven; he was appointed Clerk of the Crown for the Munster circuit, 1846. DL for Co. Limerick. He succeeded his elder brother as 4th baronet, 14 April 1872. He was a freemason from 1878. He married, 12 April 1845 at St Peter, Dublin, Anna Felicia (1822-73), eldest daughter of John Beatty West MP, and had issue:
(1) Caroline Felicia Barrington (1846-1915), born in Dublin, 29 April 1846; married, 11 July 1870 at Grangegorman (Co. Dublin), William Young Donnelly (1844-88), land agent and secretary to the Lord Chief Justice of Ireland, son of William Donnelly, barrister-at-law, of Auburn House, Malahide (Co. Dublin), and had issue two sons and one daughter; died 17 February 1915; administration of goods granted 28 June 1915 (estate £3,912);
(2) Sir Charles Burton Barrington (1848-1943), 5th bt. (q.v.);
(3) Olivia Maria Barrington (1849-1921), born 26 December 1849 and baptised at St Stephen, Dublin, 6 February 1850; married, 13 June 1871 at St Stephen, Dublin, Rev. Lewen Burton Weldon (1840-1914), rector of Holy Trinity, Weymouth (Dorset), 1890-1914, youngest son of Sir Anthony Weldon, 4th bt. of Kilmorony (Co. Kildare), and had issue two sons and three daughters; died 15 April 1921; will proved 16 June 1921 (effects £917);
(4) Croker Barrington (1851-1926), born 1851; educated at Rugby and Trinity College, Dublin (BA 1874) and Kings Inns, Dublin (called 1876); barrister-at-law; admitted a solicitor, 1883, and was in partnership with his father; built the Red House at Barrington's Bridge, but lived latterly at Exmouth (Devon); married, 7 October 1890, Florence Jane (d. 1935), youngest daughter of John Bayly of Debsborough (Co. Tipperary) and had issue two sons and two daughters; died 24 June 1926; administration of his goods was granted 18 November 1926 (estate £7,752);
(5) Mercy Barrington (1853-1931), born 19 November 1853; married, 10 August 1884 at Abington (Limerick), The Hon. George Wright, a judge of the High Court in Ireland, second son of T.R. Wright of Fern Hill (Co. Cork), and had issue one son and three daughters; died 20 November 1931; administration of goods granted 21 March 1932 (estate £183);
(6) William Matthew Barrington (1855-83), born 23 July 1855; educated at Trinity College, Dublin (BA 1877); admitted a solicitor, 1878; died at Lyon (France), 10 June 1883;
(7) Jessy Frances Barrington (1857-1929), born 7 June and baptised at St Stephen, Dublin, 8 July 1857; married, 29 January 1889 at Abington (Limerick), George Henry Pentland (1849-1932) of Black Hall, Drogheda (Co. Louth), barrister-at-law, son of George Henry Pentland, and had issue one son and one daughter; moved to England in about 1923 and was buried at Shalford (Surrey), 9 November 1929;
(8) John Beatty Barrington (1859-1926), born 18 July and baptised at St Stephen, Dublin, 26 August 1859; educated at Charterhouse and Trinity College, Dublin (BA 1882); land agent in Limerick, who acted for his father and later his brother, and also for the Earl of Limerick; JP for Co. & City of Limerick and Co. Tipperary; High Sheriff of Co. Limerick, 1912; a member of Limerick County Council; served in First World War with Anglo-Gallic Ambulance Corps, 1915-19 (Legion d'honneur; Croix de Guerre) and was subsequently President of the Limerick branch of the British Legion; married, 2 August 1887 at Nenagh (Co. Tipperary), Catherine Charlotte (1865-1937), eldest daughter of John Bayly of Debsborough (Co. Tipperary) and had issue one son and two daughters; died in Dublin, 16 December 1926; will proved 7 April 1927 (estate £12,955);
(9) Anna Josephine Barrington (1861-1947), born in Dublin, 4 August, and baptised at St Stephen, Dublin, 18 October 1861; married, 3 June 1891, John Naper George Pollock (1861-1905) of Mountainstown (Co. Meath), and had issue one son; also adopted a daughter; lived later at Portavo, Donaghadee (Co. Down); died 2 July 1947; will proved 8 February 1949 (estate in Northern Ireland £2,581 and in England £2,181);
(10) Rose Henrietta Barrington (1866-72), born in Dublin, 1 April, and baptised at St Stephen, Dublin, 24 May 1866; died young, 17 July 1872.
Sir Croker inherited Glenstal Castle from his father in 1872. In 1876 he held 9,400 acres in Co. Limerick. He lived chiefly in Dublin, where his town house was at 6 Fitzwilliam Square North.
Sir Croker died at Glenstal, 4 July 1890, and was buried at Mount Jerome Cemetery, Dublin; his will was proved 4 September 1890 (estate £14,560). His wife died 7 June 1873.

Barrington, Sir Charles Burton (1848-1943), 5th bt. Eldest son of Sir Croker Barrington (1817-90), 4th bt., and his wife Anne Felicia, eldest daughter of John Beatty West MP, born 6 February 1848. Educated at St Columba's College, Rathfarnham, Rugby School, 1864-66, and Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1867; BA 1870 MA 1877). He had a lifelong love for, and engagement with, sport, and was an accomplished rower and rugby player. He is credited with being 'the father of Irish rugby', since, with R.M. Wall of Trinity College, Dublin, he adapted the rules of rugby union established at Rugby School for the Irish game and captained the 1st XV of Trinity College, 1867-70. As an oarsman, he rowed for Trinity over several years, and he and his brothers William, Croker, and John represented Dublin University Boat Club victoriously at the Philadelphia International Centennial Regatta in 1876; he was one of the founders of Limerick Boat Club, 1870, and was said still to row occasionally (but only in fine weather) in Hampshire in his 90s. He was DL and JP for Co. Limerick, High Sheriff of Co. Limerick, 1879, and was appointed Hon. Col. of Limerick City Artillery, Southern Division in 1901. In 1915, aged 67, he drove a field ambulance in France, for which he was awarded an MBE, 1919. A Unionist in politics, he was involved in peace efforts during the Irish independence struggle. He was a freemason and was Provincial Grand Master of North Munster. He succeeded his father as 5th baronet, 4 July 1890. He married, 14 February 1895 at All Saints, Margaret St., London, Mary Rose (1868-1943), youngest daughter of Sir Henry Hickman Bacon, 11th bt., and had issue:
(1) Winifred Frances Barrington (1897-1921), born 5 July 1897; died unmarried when she was killed in an IRA ambush of a Royal Irish Constabulary inspector with whom she was travelling, 14 May 1921;
(2) Sir Charles Bacon (k/a Pat) Barrington (1902-80), 6th bt., born 6 June 1902; educated at Eton; nurseryman and company director; succeeded his father as 6th baronet, 12 August 1943; lived at Barrihurst, Cranleigh (Surrey); married, 7 August 1930, Constance Doris (1902-92), daughter of Ernest James Elkington of London, and had issue two daughters; died 30 November 1980; will proved 10 February 1980 (estate £226,132);
(3) Sir Alexander Fitzwilliam Croker (k/a Fitz) Barrington (1909-2003), 7th bt., born 19 November 1909; educated at Shrewsbury School and Christ Church, Oxford; company director, 1932-39; served in Second World War with Intelligence Corps, 1939-42 (PoW, 1942-45); manager in the publishing industry, 1946-72; succeeded his elder brother as 7th baronet, 1980; died unmarried aged 93 on 6 February 2003; will proved 11 September 2003; on his death the family baronetcy passed to a descendant of the second son of the 1st baronet, living in Canada.
Sir Charles inherited Glenstal Castle from his father in 1890. Following the murder of his daughter, he moved his family to Fairthorne Manor, Botley, which was sold to the YMCA in 1946. He offered Glenstal Castle to the Irish Free State Government as an official residence for a future President of Ireland, but after serious consideration the offer was rejected, and the house was sold for a nominal £2,000 to Monsignor James Ryan, who donated it to the Benedictine community at Maredsous (Belgium), which wished to found an Irish daughter house.
Sir Charles died aged 95 on 12 August 1943; administration of his goods was granted to his elder son, 3 December 1943 (estate £15,980). His wife died 1 March 1943 and was buried at Botley (Hants); her will was proved 25 June 1943 (estate £49,983).


Principal sources


Burke's Peerage & Baronetage, 2003, pp. 276-77; H. Janssens de Varebeke, 'The Barringtons of Limerick',  North Munster Antiquarian Journal, Vol. VIII, 1956, No. 3; M. Tierney & J. Cornforth, 'Glenstal Castle, Co. Limerick', Country Life, 3 October 1974, pp. 934-37; M.D. McGarry, 'Creating a noble past: the design of Glenstal Castle, 1836-61', Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 2006, pp. 39-49


Location of archives


Barrington of Glenstal Castle, baronets: some papers are understood to be preserved in the library of Glenstal Abbey.


Coat of arms


Argent, three chevronels gules, a label of three points vert, a canton of the second, charged with a trefoil, slipped or.


Can you help?
  • I should be most grateful if anyone can provide photographs or portraits of people whose names appear in bold above, and who are not already illustrated.
  • As always, any additions or corrections to the account given above will be gratefully received and incorporated.


Revision and acknowledgements


This post was first published 25 March 2020.