Saturday 30 March 2024

(571) Beresford of Abbeville, Termon House and Woodhouse

Beresford of Abbeville and Woodhouse 
The family considered here are a cadet branch of the Beresfords of Curraghmore, Earls of Tyrone and Marquesses of Waterford, who will be the subject of a future post. This branch descends from the Hon. and Rt. Hon. John de la Poer Beresford (1738-1805), with whom the genealogy below begins. He was the second surviving son of the 1st Earl of Tyrone. John was called to the Irish bar in 1761 and entered the Irish Parliament in the same year, serving as MP for Co. Waterford, where the interest of his father and later his elder brother, guaranteed his election. Although his brother (from 1789, Marquess of Waterford) was the head of the family, it was John who exercised the greater political power through his management of the rapidly expanding Beresford patronage network, and through his position as First Commissioner for the Revenue of Ireland. Such was his influence that he was spoken of as 'the king' of Ireland, and he demonstrated the effectiveness of his connections in 1795 when he secured the rapid dismissal of Lord Fitzwilliam as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland after the latter had presumed to dismiss him from the Custom House. After the Union of Britain and Ireland, he played a major part in defining the new financial relationship between the two nations. Nor was his influence confined to the political and economic spheres: his invitation to James Gandon to design a new Custom House in Dublin in the 1780s changed the landscape of Dublin and established neo-classical design as the style of its time in Ireland to an extent that it never quite achieved in the other nations of these islands. Gandon provided him with a sumptuous private apartment in the Custom House, and also remodelled Abbey Well House, the small country house at Kinsealy north of Dublin which Beresford bought and renamed Abbeville after his first wife's birthplace.

By his two wives, John Beresford produced a total of nineteen children between 1761 and 1793: four sons and four daughters by his French first wife, and four sons and seven daughters by his second wife, several of whom died young or in early adulthood. His eldest son, Marcus Beresford (1764-97) was brought up to succeed his father, becoming a barrister and MP, and making a good marriage with the daughter of Joseph Leeson, Earl of Milltown, whose home at Russborough House was one of the grandest in Ireland. Sadly, Marcus predeceased his father, and in 1802 John gave Abbeville to one of his younger sons, John Claudius Beresford (1766-1846), who also succeeded him as MP for Co. Waterford, although his politics were not always aligned with those of his father. J.C. Beresford had made an unsavoury name for himself during the Irish rebellion of the 1790s, when the militia unit for which he was responsible administered extra-judicial beatings to suspected rebels. He held a series of profitable positions within the Customs House during his father's long tenure there, but after his father's death he ran into financial difficulties and from 1811 largely withdrew from public life. He was Lord Mayor of Dublin in 1814-15, but sold Abbeville at that time.

The Bishop's Palace, Kilmore
The second surviving son of John Beresford was the Rt. Rev. George de la Poer Beresford (1765-1841), for whom family influence secured the bishopric of Kilmore in 1802. He held this position until his death (the diocese being united with Ardagh from 1839), and in 1835-37 built a new bishop's palace there to the designs of William Farrell. He and his wife Frances - a niece of Henry Grattan - had six children. Their eldest son, John Beresford (1796-1856) was secretary of the colony of St Vincent from about 1825 until his death, but the second, Marcus Gervais Beresford (1801-85) followed in his father's footsteps and entered the church. He was Bishop of Kilmore, Elphin and Ardagh, 1854-62, during which time he rebuilt the cathedral at Kilmore, and was then appointed Archbishop of Armagh and Lord Primate of Ireland. Whatever the role his family connections played in securing his steady advancement to the episcopate, he was an able ecclesiastical administrator, who guided the Church of Ireland through the process of disestablishment and set up sound structures for its future governance. He had two sons and two daughters by his first wife, all of whom eventually left Ireland.

The youngest son of John Beresford and his first wife, Charles Cobbe Beresford (1770-1850), also entered the church, and quickly secured appointment as both a prebendary of St Patrick's Cathedral and Chancellor of Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin. After his father's death, however, he gave up these posts in favour of benefices in Ulster, and from 1809 he was the resident clergyman at Termonmaguirke (Co. Tyrone), where he became an active church and school builder. He also built himself the generously proportioned Termon House in 1815, the scale of which was perhaps necessitated by the size of his family, since he married the daughter of a Scottish baronet and produced four sons and five daughters.
Macbie Hill House, Peeblesshire: a 16th century house
remodelled by William Burn c.1835 and demolished in the 1950s.
His daughters married unusually well, with husbands including the 3rd Earl Erne and the Rev. Lord John Thynne. When he died, Termon House passed to his daughter, Charlotte and her husband the Rev. Samuel Alexander. His eldest son, the Rev. John Isaac Beresford (1796-1847) died before his father, leaving one son and two daughters. The son, George Robert Beresford (1830-71) eventually inherited his great-grandfather's seat, Macbie Hill, Peebles, but died unmarried, and it passed on his death to his sister Emily Sarah Massy-Beresford (c.1827-93) [for whom see my forthcoming post on that family].

The second son of the Rev. Charles Cobbe Beresford was George John Beresford (1807-64), who pursued a career in the Royal Artillery, retiring in 1854 with the rank of Colonel. He married twice, and in 1853 his second wife, Frances Constantia Uniacke (1822-67) inherited her family home, Woodhouse, at Stradbally on the south coast of Co. Waterford. This attractive 18th and early 19th century house remained the home of members of the Beresford family until 1971, although its descent was far from straightforward. It passed first to George's eldest surviving son, Robert Henry Beresford (1845-1903), who after a brief military career was employed as a temporary resident magistrate, a peripatetic role which probably left him little time to enjoy the estate. When he died, ownership passed to his younger brother, John George Beresford (1847-1925), who had, however, emigrated to the USA in 1869 and become an American citizen in 1883. In the circumstances of early 20th century Ireland, there was little incentive for him to return to take up the personal management of his property, and he seems to have been a classic absentee landlord, operating through agents. J.G. Beresford married twice but had no children, and on his death the estate passed briefly to his youngest brother, the Rev. Richard Uniacke Beresford (1858-1925), a canon and precentor of St Canice's Cathedral, Kilkenny. He too died before the year was out and the estate devolved on his sister, Emily Frances Louisa (1861-1933), the widow of Sir Robert Adair Hodson (1853-1921), 4th bt. Lady Hodson, like her brothers, was childless, and when she died in 1933 she was the last descendant of the Uniacke family. Lacking close relatives, she bequeathed the Woodhouse estate to her distant kinsman, Lord Hugh Tristram de la Poer Beresford (1908-41), the third son of the 6th Marquess of Waterford, who was an officer in the Royal Navy. He was killed in action in 1941 and the estate passed to his elder brother, Lord William Mostyn de la Poer Beresford (1905-73), who sold it in 1971 and moved to a smaller house called Dangan Cottage at Thomastown (Co. Kilkenny). A further account of Lord Hugh and Lord William will be given in my forthcoming post on the Beresfords of Curraghmore.

Abbeville, Kinsealy, Co. Dublin

In origin, Abbeville is a south-facing late 17th or early 18th century house (originally called Abbey Well) which became the wing of a north-facing five-bay villa as the result of additions of c.1720-40, in the style of leading Irish architect, Richard Castle (c.1690-1751). 

Abbeville House: the early 18th century entrance front and Gandon porch in 1976. Image: South Dublin Libraries.

Abbeville House: phased plan 
Nothing is known of the ownership of the house until 1760, when a Kildare landowner, Edward Beaver, sold it to the John Beresford, who bought it as a base near Dublin from which to pursue his parliamentary and administrative career. In 1781, Beresford brought to Ireland a young English architect called James Gandon, who came to design the neo-classical Custom House on the north bank of the Liffey and stayed to become Ireland's greatest neo-classical architect. Not surprisingly, Beresford employed Gandon to alter and enlarge his own house, probably in the late 1780s, but Gandon had limited experience in the design of domestic buildings and the result lacks the grandeur of his public architecture. 

Abbeville House: the garden front created by James Gandon to unify the existing buildings.
Gandon added the porch to the entrance side and created a new 13 bay garden front uniting and concealing the previous buildings. This has two storeys over a basement and consists of a seven bay centre, flanked by two wide curved bows prolonged by single-storey one-bay units. He also added a stable and farmyard complex to the rear. In 1837 it was noted that the gardens contained a greenhouse more than 400 feet long, of which no trace remains. Inside the house, Gandon created a series of elegant neo-classical rooms, although the complex history of the house resulted in these being disposed on an unorthodox plan. 

Abbeville House: the dining room in use as a drawing room in 1912.

In c.1950 the house was restored and modernised by Michael John Scott for Percy Reynolds, but after 1963 the house slipped into decay while in the possession of an absentee German owner. It was rescued in 1969, when it was bought by Charles Haughey, a Government minister who was Taoiseach (Prime Minister) in 1979-81, 1982 and 1987-92. He lived here until his death in 2006, restored the house well, and filled it with on the whole appropriate contents. Haughey was eventually forced out of politics by a phone-tapping scandal, and after his retirement further revelations of corruption, embezzlement, tax evasion and a 27-year extra-marital affair tarnished his reputation. In 2003, he was obliged to sell Abbeville to meet his outstanding tax liabilities. It was bought by a development company, although a clause in the agreement allowed Haughey to remain in occupation until his death, and his widow did not finally move out until 2008. Planning permission was given for conversion of the house into a hotel and golf club, with housing in the grounds, but work did not start and eventually the developers went bust when the Irish property market collapsed after 2008. Abbeville was sold on in 2013 to the Japanese hotel chain, Toyoko Ltd., one of whose executives currently occupies the house, pending the realisation of similar development plans.

Descent: Edward Beaver; sold 1760 to the Hon. John Beresford (1738-1805); gave house 1802 to his son John Claudius Beresford (1766-1846); sold 1814 to Austin Cooper (d. 1830), antiquarian; sold 1830 to Sir James William Cusack, surgeon, for his son, Henry Thomas Cusack; to son, Athanasius Francis William Geoffrey de Geneville Cusack (1855-87); to brother, Major James William Henry Claud Cusack; to son, Major Ralph Smith Oliver Cusack who sold 1948 to (Albert) Percy Reynolds; sold 1963 to Franz Zielkowski, a German industrialist; sold 1969 to Charles Haughey (1925-2006); sold 2003 to Manor Park Homes; sold 2013 to Toyoko Ltd.

Termon House, Carrickmore, Co. Tyrone

An account of this house has been given in a previous post.

Woodhouse, Stradbally, Co. Waterford

A house is said to have been built on this estate close to the coast in the early 17th century by James Wallis, who rented the property from Richard Beacon, one of the undertakers of the Munster plantation, who had been granted the forfeited lands of the FitzGeralds in Limerick and Waterford. Wallis was dispossessed by the Fitzgeralds during the 1641 rebellion, and despite obtaining a legal judgement in his favour in 1653, he never recovered the estate. Civil War damage may have meant that the house was not occupied in the later 17th century. In 1724, debts forced the sale of the 2,500 acre estate, and the house was probably rebuilt soon afterwards. Landscaping evidently followed, for Maurice Uniacke was awarded a premium for planting over 150,000 trees on the estate in 1742, and it remains well-wooded today. 

Woodhouse, Stradbally: watercolour of the house by Louisa Uniacke, 1840 [National Library of Ireland, PD 4554 TX 5]
The Georgian house is a modest T-shaped two-storey building with an entrance front of six bays facing east. The detailing of the entrance front, with lowered sills to the ground-floor windows and an elliptical-headed doorway with a spoked fanlight, seems now to date from the early 19th century, when the house was probably further remodelled. The outbuildings were extended in the mid 19th century after the estate passed by marriage to the Beresfords. After a period of decline and neglect in the late 20th century, the house was restored and modernised at a cost of some €4m by the present owners after 2012.

Woodhouse, Stradbally: the house in 2012. (Image: The Woodhouse estate)
Descent: built for James Wallis (fl. 1641); seized by Thomas Fitzgerald... Maj. Richard MacThomas Fitzgerald, who sold 1724 to Thomas Uniacke; to son, Maurice Uniacke (d. 1743); to son, Bor Uniacke (1710-77); to son, Col. Robert Uniacke (1756-1802); to son, Robert John Uniacke (1795-1851); to son, Col. Robert Bor Uniacke (1823-53); to sister, Frances Constantia (1822-67), wife of Col. George John Beresford (1807-64); to son, Robert Henry Beresford (1845-1903); to brother, John George Beresford (1847-1925); to brother, Rev. Richard Uniacke Beresford (1858-1925); to sister, Emily Frances Louisa (1861-1933), widow of Sir Robert Adair Hodson (1853-1921), 4th bt.; to kinsman, Lord Hugh Tristram de la Poer Beresford (1908-41); to brother, Lord William Mostyn de la Poer Beresford (1905-73), who sold 1971 to John McCoubray, who sold 1972 to John Rohan; sold 1982 to Pinmere Ltd; sold 2006 to Defigo Ltd.; sold 2012 to Jim & Sally Thompson.

Beresford of Abbeville, Termon House and Woodhouse 


Hon. John Beresford (1738-1805) 
Beresford, Hon. and Rt. Hon. John de la Poer (1738-1805). 
Fifth, but second surviving, son of Sir Marcus Beresford (1694-1763), 4th bt. and 1st Earl of Tyrone, and his wife 
Lady Katherine (d. 1769), from 1767 Baroness La Poer in her own right, daughter and heiress of James Power (d. 1704), 3rd Earl of Tyrone, born 14 March 1737/8. Educated at Kilkenny College, Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1755; BA 1758), Lincolns Inn (admitted 1756), Middle Temple (admitted 1760) and Kings Inns, Dublin (called to Irish bar, 1761). Barrister-at-law. MP for Co. Waterford in the Irish Parliament, 1761-1801 and in the UK Parliament, 1801-05. He was appointed to the Privy Council of Ireland, 1768 and that of Great Britain, 1786, and was made a Commissioner for the Revenue of Ireland, 1770 (First Commissioner, 1780-95, 1795-1802); he was also joint Taster of Wines (with his eldest son) at the Port of Dublin, from 1773. His position as First Commissioner and his extensive personal patronage through his kinship networks gave him such immense power in Ireland that he was spoken of as 'the king of Ireland', and when Lord Fitzwilliam was appointed as Lord Lieutenant in 1795 and dismissed him for corruption, he was able to secure Fitzwilliam's dismissal and his own reinstatement. He also challenged Fitzwilliam to a duel but the combatants were interrupted and Fitzwilliam afterwards apologised for his allegations of malversation. As First Commissioner he introduced some useful reforms in the collection of taxation, but his policy was generally conservative and repressive; he was opposed to Catholic emancipation and although initially cool about the proposed union of Britain and Ireland eventually strongly supported the policy. After the Union had taken place, he played a major part in settling the financial relationship between the two countries. A by-product of Beresford's role as Commissioner was his role in the development of neo-classical architecture in Ireland, since he brought James Gandon to Ireland to design a new Custom House. He was a Governor of St Patrick's Hospital, Dublin, 1763-88 and Deputy Governor of Co. Waterford, 1763. He married 1st, 12/15 November 1760, Annette Constantia* (d. 1770), daughter of Gen. the Count de Ligondes, of Ligondes, Auvergne (France), and 2nd, 4 June 1774, Barbara (d. 1795), second daughter of Sir William Montgomery, 1st bt., a celebrated beauty who was one of the three Montgomery sisters depicted by Sir Joshua Reynolds in his painting 'The Three Graces' (1773), and had issue:
(1.1) Catherine Beresford (1761-1836), born 28 September 1761; married, 7 August 1778, as his second wife, Lt-Col. the Rt. Hon. Henry Theophilus Clements (1734-95) of Ashfield Lodge (Co. Cavan) and Woodville (Co. Leix), MP for Cavan Borough, 1769-76, 1783-90, and for Co. Leitrim, 1776-83 and 1790-95, son of Rt. Hon. Nathaniel Clements (1705-77), and had issue five sons and three daughters; died 7 January and was buried at Kensal Green Cemetery (Middx), 14 January 1836; her brief will was proved 23 January 1836;
(1.2) Elizabeth Beresford (1762-83), born 24 November 1762; died unmarried, 15 August 1783;
(1.3) Marcus Beresford (1764-97), born 14 February 1764; educated at Westminster, Lincoln's Inn (admitted 1779), Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1781; BA 1784), and Kings Inns, Dublin (called to Irish Bar, 1786); barrister-at-law (KC); MP for Dungannon in the Irish Parliament, 1783-97; joint taster of wines (with his father) in the Port of Dublin, 1773-97; married, 25 February 1791, Lady Frances Arabella (1771-1840), daughter of Rt. Hon. Joseph Leeson (1711-83), 1st Earl of Milltown, of Russborough House (Co. Wicklow), and had issue two sons and one daughter; died 16 November 1797; will proved in Dublin, 1798;
(1.4) Rt. Rev. George de la Poer Beresford (1765-1841) (q.v.);
(1.5) John Claudius Beresford (1766-1846), born 23 October 1766; educated at Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1783; BA 1787; MA 1832); banker, in partnership with Mr Wood-Mason; an officer in the County of Dublin Cavalry (Capt., 1796), who was particularly unpopular during the 1798 rebellion for the extra-judicial floggings administered by his corps; alderman of Dublin, 1808-15 (Lord Mayor 1814-15); MP for Swords, 1790-97 and Dublin City, 1797-1800 in the Irish parliament, and for Dublin city, 1801-04 and Co. Waterford, 1806-11 in the UK parliament; unlike his father he opposed the Union of Britain and Ireland, although he accepted it when it happened; registrar general of tobacco, 1784-99; inspector-general of exports and imports for the Port of Dublin 1796-99, and also storekeeper, 1783-1802 and taster of wines, 1798-1802;  General Agent of the Irish Society, 1789-1837; inherited Abbeville from his father, but from 1811 was in financial difficulties and sold it in 1814, thereafter withdrawing from public life; married, 3 March 1795, Elizabeth McKenzie, only child of Archibald Menzies of Culdares (Perths), and had issue one son and four daughters; died 3 July 1846;
(1.6) Anne Constantia Beresford (1768-1836), born 16 April 1768; married 1st, 1790, Robert Uniacke (d. 1802), of Woodhouse (Co. Waterford) and had issue at least one son and one daughter; married 2nd, 2 July 1805 at St George, Hanover Sq., Westminster (Middx), Robert Doyne of Wells (Co. Wexford), and had further issue one son; died at Tullow, 8 August 1836;
(1.7) Jane Beresford (1769-1836), born 13 June 1769; married, 10 September 1788, Rt. Hon. Sir George Fitzgerald Hill (1763-1839), 2nd bt., of Brook Hall (Co. Derry), Governor of St Vincent, 1830-33 and Trinidad, 1833-39, but had no issue; died 2 November 1836 and was buried in the Governor's Cemetery, Port of Spain (Trinidad); she is commemorated by a monument in the cathedral at Port of Spain;
(1.8) Rev. Charles Cobbe Beresford (1770-1850) (q.v.);
(2.1) Hannah Beresford (b. 1775), born 16 May 1775; probably died in infancy;
(2.2) Barbara Beresford (1776-86), born 8 July 1776; died young, 8 May 1786;
(2.3) Frances Honoria Beresford (1777-1860), born 3 September 1777; married, 9 July 1805 at St George, Hanover Sq., Westminster, James Whyte (1774-1852) of Pilton House (Devon), banker, and had issue at least two sons; died 6 February 1860;
(2.4) Anna Marie Beresford (1778-79), born 30 October 1778; died in infancy, 11 October 1779.
(2.5) William Barré Beresford (1780-82), born 12 May 1780; died in infancy, 29 May 1782;
(2.6) James Hamilton Beresford (1782-1806), born 18 February 1782; a midshipman in the Royal Navy, who accidentally drowned while serving in HMS Phoenix; died unmarried, 7 December 1806;
(2.7) Henry Barré Beresford (1784-1837) [for whom see my forthcoming post on the Beresfords of Learmount]; 
(2.8) Elizabeth Beresford (1786-1860), born 27 January 1786; died unmarried, 17 January 1860;
(2.9) Anna Beresford (1787-1862), married 1st, c.1812, Maj. Charles Gardiner (c.1780-1818) of 90th Foot, only son of Gen. the Hon. William Gardiner; married 2nd, 9 October 1822 at St George, Hanover Sq., Westminster, Charles Manning Allen (1802-80) (also known as Charles Stuart Hay Allen and Charles Edward Stuart, Count d'Albanie, who claimed, with his elder brother, legitimate descent from the Jacobite royal family), and had issue one son and three daughters; died at Pressburg (now Bratislava, Slovakia), 13 November 1862;
(2.10) William Hamilton Beresford (1788-1865), born 11 October 1788; died 16 September 1865 and was buried at Carlingford (Co. Louth), where he is commemorated by a monument;
(2.11) Clara Barbara Beresford (c.1792-1862); married, 10 September 1813 at Derry Cathedral, Rev. James Spencer Knox (1789-1862), rector of Maghera (Co. Derry), and had issue four sons and five daughters; died 4 April and was buried at Bristol General Cemetery, 10 April 1862.
He bought the Abbey Well estate at Kinsealy (Co. Dublin) in 1760 and had James Gandon remodel it while working on the Custom House in the 1780s. He renamed it Abbeville after the town from which his first wife came. He also owned an estate at Walworth (Co. Londonderry), and a sumptuous private apartment in the Custom House.
He died 5 November 1805. His first wife died 26 October 1770. His second wife died 29 May 1795.
* She was born a Roman Catholic, but converted to Protestantism in 1764.

George de la Poer Beresford (1765-1841) 
Beresford, Rt. Rev. George de la Poer (1765-1841). 
Second son of Hon. and Rt. Hon. John de la Poer Beresford (1738-1805) and his first wife, 
Annette Constantia, daughter of Gen. the Count de Ligondes, of Ligondes, Auvergne (France), born 19 July 1765. Educated at Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1782; BA 1786; DD 1802). A prebendary of Waterford Cathedral, 1789-1801; vicar of Donoughmore, 1790-97 and Treasurer of the diocese of Ossory, 1792-97; Precentor of Waterford, 1793-1801; Dean of Kilmore and vicar of Kilmore and Ballintemple, 1796-1801; Bishop of Clonfert, 1801-02; Bishop of Kilmore, 1802-39 and of Kilmore & Ardagh, 1839-41. He married, 1794 (licence 26 March), Frances (c.1775-1843), daughter of Gervais Parker Bushe of Kilfane, MP for Kilkenny, and niece of Henry Grattan, and had issue:
(1) Charlotte Mary Beresford (1795-1851), born 12 June 1795; married 1st, 2 May 1812, Frederick Lumley (later Lumley-Savile) (1788-1837) of Tickhill Castle (Yorks), and had issue one son and three daughters; married 2nd, 20 July 1839 at Kilmore (Co. Cavan), Robert Henry Southwell (1789-1863); died at Wiesbaden (Germany), 2 November 1851; will proved in the PCC, 18 December 1851 and again 5 July 1859;
(2) John Beresford (1796-1856), born April 1796; educated at St John's College, Cambridge (matriculated 1815); Colonial Secretary of the island of St. Vincent, c.1825-56; married, 6 May 1822, Harriet Eliza (c.1798-1857), eldest daughter of Hon. William Wylly, Chief Justice of St. Vincent, and had issue four sons and one daughter; died at Shirley (Hants), 16 September 1856;
(3) Anastasia Beresford (c.1798-1803); died young 'of a convulsive fit', April 1803;
(4) Most Rev. Marcus Gervais Beresford (1801-85) (q.v.);
(5) George de la Poer Beresford (c.1802-26), born about 1802; educated at Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1821; BA 1825); died unmarried, 6 June 1826;
(6) Frances Beresford (c.1804-33), born about 1804; married, 19 June 1824 at Belmore, the Hon. & Rev. Francis Howard (1797-1857), vicar of Swords (Co. Dublin), 1826-57 (who m2, 20 June 1836, Sarah, eldest daughter of Charles Hamilton, of Hamwood (Co. Meath), and had further issue two sons), son of William Howard, 3rd Earl of Wicklow, and had issue one son; died 17 November 1833.
He lived at the old bishop's palace in Kilmore until it was replaced by a new See House built in c.1835-37 to the design of William Farrell.
He died 16 October 1841. His widow died at Ballyhaise rectory, 19 May 1843.

Archbishop Beresford (1801-85) 
Beresford, Most Rev. & Rt. Hon. Marcus Gervais (1801-85). 
Second son of Rt. Rev. George de la Poer Beresford (1765-1841) and his wife Frances, daughter of Gervais Parker Bushe MP of Kilfane, born at the Custom House, Dublin, 14 February 1801. Educated at Richmond (Yorks) and Trinity College, Cambridge (matriculated 1819; BA 1824; MA 1828; DD 1840). Ordained deacon, 1824 and priest, 1825. Rector of Kildallon (Co. Cavan), 1825-28; vicar of Drung and Lara, and vicar-general of Kilmore, 1828-54; Archdeacon of Armagh, 1839-54; Bishop of Kilmore, Elphin and Ardagh, 1854-62, during which time he built a new cathedral at Kilmore to the designs of William Slater; Archbishop of Armagh and Lord Primate of Ireland, 1862-85; Prelate of the Order of St Patrick and Lord Almoner to Queen Victoria. An ecclesiastical statesman, who guided the Church of Ireland through the process of disestablishment and set up sound structures for its future governance; he was appointed to the Privy Council of Ireland, 1862. He was awarded an honorary degree by Oxford University (DCL, 1864). He married 1st, 25 October 1824, Mary (d. 1845), daughter of Col. Henry Peisley L'Estrange of Moystown (Co. Offaly) and widow of Richard E. Digby of Geashill (Co. Offaly), and 2nd, 5 June 1850 at St James, Piccadilly, Westminster (Middx), Elizabeth (d. 1870), only daughter of James Trail Kennedy of Annadale (Co. Down) and widow of Robert George Bomford of Rahenstown (Co. Meath), and had issue:
(1.1) Charlotte Henrietta Beresford (1828-84), born 17 May 1828; married, 16 August 1853 at Drung (Co. Cavan), Henry Beilby William Milner (1823-76) of West Retford House (Notts) and Kirkstall Grange (Yorks WR), son of Sir William Milner, 4th bt., and had issue three sons and three daughters; died in Armagh, 15 September and was buried at Acaster Selby (Yorks WR), 20 September 1884; will proved 1 November 1884 (effects £3,387);
(1.2) Mary Emily Beresford (c.1829-58), born about 1829; married, 16 August 1853 at Drung (Co. Cavan), Col. Thomas Heywood (1826-1915) (who m2, 10 April 1862 at St Mark, Torquay (Devon), Sophie Grace (c.1840-1918), only daughter of Stepney St George (1791-1847) of Headford (Co. Galway)), of Oak Hall alias Hatley St. George (Worcs), son of Thomas Heywood of Hope End (Herefs), antiquary, and had issue one son and two daughters; died at Doveleys (Derbys), 12 August 1858;
(1.3) George de la Poer Beresford (1831-1906) of Auburn (Co. Cavan), born 22 April 1831; educated at University College, Oxford (matriculated 1849); JP and DL for Co. Cavan; High Sheriff of Co. Cavan, 1865-66 and Co. Armagh, 1887-88; Conservative MP for Armagh City, 1875-85; lived latterly at Ovendon House, Sundridge (Kent); married, 24 April 1860 at St Martin-in-the-Fields, Westminster (Middx), Mary Annabella (1835-1917), daughter of Rev. William Vernon Harcourt (1789-1871) of Nuneham Courtenay (Oxon), scientist and clergyman, and had issue two sons and two daughters; died at Danbury Park (Essex), 3 August 1906; will proved 18 October 1906 (estate £31,109);
(1.4) Henry Marcus Beresford (1835-95), born 2 March 1835; an officer in the army (Ensign, 1853; Lt., 1854; Capt., 1858; Maj., 1873); lived at Drumlease (Co. Leitrim) and later at Villa Catterina, San Remo (Italy); married, 10 April 1861 at St Peter, Dublin, Julia Ellen (c.1841-1923), daughter of Rev. Francis Richard Maunsell, rector of Castleisland (Co. Kerry), and had issue four sons and one daughter; died at San Remo, 5 February 1895; will proved 28 March 1895 (effects £900).
He lived latterly at the Archbishop's Palace in Armagh.
He died at the Bishop's Palace in Armagh, 26 December 1885, and was buried in St Patrick's Cathedral there, 31 December 1885; his will was proved 10 February 1886 (effects £91,022). His first wife died 31 December 1845. His second wife died 1 July 1870 and was buried in Armagh Cathedral, where she is commemorated by a monument.

Rev. Charles Cobbe Beresford (1770-1850) 
Beresford, Rev. Charles Cobbe (1770-1850). 
Fourth son 
of Hon. and Rt. Hon. John de la Poer Beresford (1738-1805) and his first wife, Annette Constantia, daughter of Gen. the Count de Ligondes, of Ligondes, Auvergne (France), born 2 October 1770. Educated privately and at Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1787; BA 1790; MA 1807). Prebendary of St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin, 1798-1805; Chancellor of Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin, 1802-09; rector of Carrigallen (Co. Leitrim), 1804-09, Killesher (Co. Fermanagh), 1805-50, and Termonmaguirke (Co. Tyrone), 1809-50, where he resided and was responsible for building two churches and nine schools. JP for Co. Tyrone. He married, 22 November 1795, Amelia (c.1770-1839), daughter of Sir William Montgomery (1717-88), 1st bt., of Macbie Hill (Peebles), and had issue:
(1) Rev. John Isaac Beresford (1796-1847) (q.v.);
(2) Harriet Louisa Beresford (c.1801-71), born about 1801; married, 15 February 1825 at Termonmaguirke, Rev. John James Fox (1792-1870), rector of Kinawley (Co. Fermanagh & Co. Cavan), 1822-70, fourth son of Richard Fox of Fox Hall (Co. Longford), and had issue six sons and three daughters; died at Farm Hill (Co. Sligo), 24 September 1871;
(3) Selina Griselda Beresford (1804-84), born December 1804; married, 6 July 1837, John Crichton (1802-85), 3rd Earl Erne, of Crom Castle (Co. Fermanagh), Lord Lieutenant of Co. Fermanagh and a representative Irish peer, and had issue three sons and one daughter; died 4 September 1884;
(4) Emilia Catherine Beresford (c.1805-69), born about 1805; married, 16 December 1831 at Termonmaguirke, Arthur Willoughby Cole-Hamilton (1806-91) of Beltrim Castle (Co. Tyrone), and had issue five sons and three daughters; died 19 November, and was buried at Lower Badony (Co. Tyrone), 22 November 1869;
(5) Anne Constantia Beresford  (c.1806-66), born about 1806; a pioneering marine biologist who constructed the first marine aquarium in Britain; married, 2 March 1824 at St James, Piccadilly, Westminster (Middx), Rev. Lord John Thynne (1798-1881) of Ashburnham House, Westminster and Haynes Park (Beds), deputy Dean of Westminster, third son of Thomas Thynne, 2nd Marquess of Bath, and had issue eight sons and two daughters; died 22 April 1866;
(6) George John Beresford (1807-64) (q.v.);
(7) Rev. Charles Claudius Beresford (1810-48), born 14 December 1810; educated at Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1828; BA 1832); ordained deacon, 1834 and priest, 1835; vicar of Drumlane (Co. Cavan), 1835-37; rector of Bailieborough and Moybologue (Co. Cavan), 1837-48; married, 8 August 1838 at Shercock (Co. Cavan), Anna Maria (c.1820-97), only daughter of Rev. Frederick Fitzpatrick (1790-1870) of Loch Scillan Glebe (Co. Cavan) and had issue two sons and two daughters; died of a fever caught from one of his parishioners, 29 August 1848 and was buried at Bailieborough;
(8) Henry Robert Beresford (c.1811-42), born about 1811; an officer in the army (2nd Lt., 1835; Lt., 1841); a freemason from 1840; died in Jamaica, 16 November 1842;
(9) Charlotte Frances Beresford (c.1812-90), born about 1812; married, 4 November 1839 at Termonmaguirke, Rev. Samuel Alexander (1808-89), rector of Termonmaguirke, 1851-80, eldest son of John Alexander of Caw, and had issue three sons and three daughters; died 27 January 1890.
He lived at Termon House, which he built in 1815 at a cost of £3,293.
He died 13 December 1850 and was buried at Termonmaguirke; his will was proved in 1851. His wife died 14 March 1839 and was buried at Termonmaguirke.

Beresford, Rev. John Isaac (1796-1847). Eldest son of Rev. Charles Cobbe Beresford (1770-1850) and his wife Amelia, daughter of Sir William Montgomery, 1st bt., born in Dublin, 13 October 1796. Educated at Royal School, Dungannon and Trinity College, Dublin (matriculated 1815; BA 1818; MA 1821). Ordained deacon, 1819 and priest by 1821. Prebendary of Maine, 1821-23 and vicar of Drumlane, 1821-35; rector of Donoughmore (Co. Leix), 1823-47. He married, 13 June 1824, Sophia (1809-58), daughter of Robert White of Aghaboe (Co. Leix) and had issue:
(1) Emily Sarah Beresford (c.1827-93); married, 6 May 1851 at Monkstown (Co. Dublin), Very Rev. John Maunsell Massy (from 1871, Massy-Beresford) (1823-86) of St Hubert's (Co. Fermanagh), perpetual curate of Killoughter, 1856-70 and Dean of Kilmore, 1870-86, and had issue three sons (of whom two apparently died young) and two daughters; lived at Macbie Hill, Peebles; died in London, 28 July 1893; will confirmed, 13 November 1893 (estate £2,152);
(2) George Robert Beresford (1830-71), born 18 October 1830; an officer in the army (Ensign, 1851; Lt., 1854; Capt., 1854), who fought in the Crimea (wounded) and was appointed a Chevalier of the Légion d'honneur (France), 1856; inherited Macbie Hill (Peebles) from his great-uncle, Sir George Montgomery c.1851; died unmarried at Naseby Woolleys (Northants), 6 April 1871; his will was confirmed in Scotland, 25 July 1871;
(3) Harriet Selina Beresford (1835-1919); married, 29 April 1856 at Edinburgh, William Allan Waddrop (c.1830-1911) of Dalmarnock, Glasgow and Garvold House, Dolphington (West Lothian); died 13 February 1919; confirmation of will granted 25 August 1919 (estate £2,927).
He died at Macbie Hill, 9 February 1847. His wife died 27 November 1858.

Col. George John Beresford (1807-64) 
Beresford, George John (1807-64). 
Second son of Rev. Charles Cobbe Beresford (1770-1850) and his wife Amelia, daughter of Sir William Montgomery, 1st bt., born 21 July 1807. An officer in the Royal Artillery (2nd Lt., 1826; Lt., 1828; Capt. 1841; Lt-Col., 1854; retired as Col., 1854). JP for County Waterford (by 1857). He married 1st, 12 December 1839 at Rathronan (Co. Tipperary), Jane Charlotte (c.1819-42), youngest daughter of Charles Riall of Heywood (Co. Tipperary), and 2nd, 15 November 1844 at Stradbally (Co. Waterford), Frances Constantia (1822-67), eldest daughter of Robert Uniacke of Woodhouse (Co. Waterford), and had issue: 
(1.1) Charles John Beresford (1841-42), born about January 1841; died in infancy, 1 July 1842 and was buried on Ireland island, Sandys (Bermuda);
(1.2) Jane Selina Beresford (1842-1930), born 26 March and baptised on Ireland island, Sandys (Bermuda), 7 April 1842; married, 18 February 1868 at Stradbally, Rev. William Power Cobbe (1827-89), rector of Clonegan (Co. Waterford), 1867-75 and chaplain of St Aubyn (Jersey), 1875-89, son of Capt. William Power RN, and had issue one son; lived latterly with her son at Dover (Kent); died 10 November 1930; will proved 24 January 1931 (estate £23,631);
(2.1) twin, Mildred Anne Beresford (1845-1922), born 8 September 1845; married, 18 October 1866 at Stradbally, Rev. William Carleton* (c.1828-91), rector of Callan, 1870-91 and canon of Ossory, 1882-91, but had no issue; died at Blackrock (Co. Dublin), 17 November 1921, and was buried with her husband at Kilkenny;
(2.2) twin, Robert Henry Beresford (1845-1903), born 8 September 1845; JP and DL for Co. Waterford; an officer in the army (Ensign, 1866; Lt., 1870; retired 1879); employed as a temporary resident magistrate in several counties of Ireland, 1882-1903, and for the last ten years of his life in Co. Louth; married, 24 May 1880 at Cappoquin (Co. Waterford), Laura Ellen Flora (d. 1920), youngest daughter of Sir John Henry Keane (1816-81), 3rd bt., of Cappoquin House, and widow of Capt. Bernard Henry Entwistle (d. 1877), but had no issue; died from injuries sustained in a carriage accident, 30 January 1903; will proved 28 April 1903 (estate £9,809);
(2.3) John George Beresford (1847-1925) (q.v.); 
(2.4) Charles Richard Gordon Beresford (1849-69), born 22 February and was baptised at Hougham (Kent), 22 March 1849; an officer in the merchant navy (third officer of the Lady Melville); died of dropsy in a Calcutta hospital, 24 September 1869;
(2.5) George Alexander Beresford (1850-75), born 21 November 1850 and baptised at St Thomas, Woolwich (Kent), 12 January 1851; an officer in the army (Lt., 1871); died unmarried, 8 June 1875 and was buried at Deesa, Bombay (India); administration of goods granted 6 March 1876 (estate under £2,000);
(2.6) Henry Robert Uniacke Beresford (1853-54), baptised at St Thomas, Woolwich, 27 December 1853; died in infancy and was buried at Charlton (Kent), 29 August 1854;
(2.7) Rev. Richard Uniacke Beresford (1858-1925), born 4 September and baptised at Stradbally, 31 October 1858; educated at Trinity College, Dublin (BA 1882; MA 1900); ordained deacon, 1883 and priest, 1884; curate of Pulborough (Sussex), 1883-92; rector of Inistioge (Co. Kilkenny), 1892-1925, canon of Ossory, 1893-1925 and of Leighlin, 1923-25; precentor of Ossory, 1900-25; died unmarried, 30 January and was buried at Stradbally, 3 February 1925;
(2.8) Emily Frances Louisa Beresford (1861-1933) (q.v.).
He lived at Woodhouse (Co. Waterford) in right of his second wife in 1853.
He died 11 February 1864 and was buried at Stradbally (Co. Waterford); will proved 26 May 1864 (effects under £5,000). His first wife died 6 April 1842 and was buried in the Royal Naval Cemetery, Ireland Island, Sandys (Bermuda), where she and her son are commemorated by a monument. His widow died 29 October 1867; her will was proved 26 February 1868 (effects under £3,000).
* He died suddenly while preaching in the pulpit of St Canice's Cathedral, Kilkenny, 16 August 1891, and was buried in the churchyard there.

Beresford, John George (1847-1925). Second son of Col. George John Beresford (1807-64) and his second wife, Frances Constantia, eldest daughter of Robert Uniacke of Woodhouse (Co. Waterford), born 10 June and baptised at Hougham (Kent), 14 July 1847. He emigrated to the USA, 1869, and was naturalised as an American citizen in Wyoming, 1883. He married 1st, 21 February 1898 at Manhattan, New York (USA), Emilie Eleanora (1860-1916), daughter of Adrian Iselin of New York (USA), and 2nd, 14 February 1922 at Washington DC (USA), Helen (1876-1945), daughter of Alphonso Mason (1844-1921) of Philadelphia (USA), but had no issue.
He inherited Woodhouse from his brother Robert in 1903, but did not return to Ireland. At his death it passed briefly to his brother Richard and then to his sister Emily.
He died at Washington DC, 8 May 1925, and was buried at Woodlawn Cemetery, Bronx, New York. His first wife died 24 May 1916 and was buried at New Rochelle, Westchester, New York. His widow married 2nd, 19 July 1927, John Rutherfoord (1861-1942), son of John Coles Rutherfoord; she died 2 March and was buried at Philadelphia, 5 March 1945.

Beresford, Emily Frances Louisa (1861-1933). Second daughter of Col. George John Beresford (1807-64) and his second wife, Frances Constantia, eldest daughter of Robert Uniacke of Woodhouse (Co. Waterford), born 15 February 1861. She married, 20 April 1913, Col. Sir Robert Adair Hodson (1853-1921), 4th bt., but had no issue.
She inherited Woodhouse from her brother Richard in 1925. At her death she bequeathed it to her kinsman, Lord Hugh Tristram de la Poer Beresford (1908-41), third son of the 6th Marquess of Waterford (for whom see my forthcoming post on the Beresfords of Curraghmore).
She died 14 February 1933. Her husband died 3 January 1921.

Principal sources

Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, 2003, pp. 1061-63, 4084-92; E. McParland, James Gandon: Vitruvius Hibernicus, 1985, pp. 63-66, 123-27; M. Bence-Jones, A guide to Irish country houses, 2nd ed., 1988, pp. 1, 286; M.R. Doorly, Abbeville, 1996; E.M. Johnston-Liik, History of the Irish Parliament, 1692-1800, 2002, vol. 3, pp. 156-71;

Location of archives

Beresford, Most Rev. Marcus Gervais (1801-85), Archbishop of Armagh: correspondence and papers, c.1856-82 [Cambridge University Library, Add. 9407]

Coat of arms

Quarterly, 1st and 4th, argent semée of cross crosslets fitchée three fleurs-de-lis within a bordure engrailed all sable (for Beresford); 2nd and 3rd, argent a chief indented sable (for de la Poer).

Can you help?

  • Can anyone provide photographs or portraits of the people whose names appear in bold above, for whom no image is currently shown?
  • If anyone can offer further information or corrections to any part of this article I should be most grateful. I am always particularly pleased to hear from current owners or the descendants of families associated with a property who can supply information from their own research or personal knowledge for inclusion.

Revision and acknowledgements

This post was first published 30 March 2024.