|Courtesy of the National Library of IrelandMS 40,890/2(17)|
I worked my way through a variety of records some dating as early as 1612. The earliest were carefully protected in mylar, but I was allowed to read them, and photograph them. There were books and maps from the eighteenth and ninteenth centuries, and I got to touch them!
Teevnish (there are many spellings but this is the most prevalent) was conveyed by Davy Reah McPhilbin of Bownrawer to Sir Theobald Bourke on 3 Nov 1612 (MS 40,890/2(17) ). Since our known ancestor from Teevnish is Julia Bourke (Burke) this was an interesting fact. I don't see any family connection from Theobald, but then I don't know the history of Julia's family. Most likely her ancestors were part of the clan that gathered around these more important Bourkes. At this point it is just a fun connection.
Courtesy of the National Library of Ireland
"Browne prided himself on being an enlightened landlord. In the second year of the Great Irish Famine, Browne's tenants gathered at Westport House, the ancestral residence of the Marquesses of Sligo. Browne assured his tenants of his support for them, and proceeded to hand them guns (without regard for his own safety), enabling them to hunt for game. He also went into considerable debt in order to acquire cornmeal from the Americas, and converted most of Westport House into a soup kitchen for the starving peasants."
The website "County Mayo Beginnings", however paints a very different picture. Using J F Quinn's "History of Mayo" written in 1931 as a major source, a picture emerges of over 1700 tenents evicted from their homes, packed into workhouses and onto immigrant ships. And that corn...well it turns out he had to open the cornstores at the Quay to house the overflow from the workhouse due to his ejectments. The bulk of those he evicted were from the parishes of Aughagower and Louisburg.
The 1840-1844 rent ledger for the Altamont estates contains a note for tenants dated Oct 1844 stating......
The Tenants on the Estates of the Marquess of Sligo are requested to take Notice: 1. A New Tenant will not be allowed to come upon the Estate, either to hold land himself or to reside upon the holding of another. 2. In every townland, not under lease, the holdings are to be made separate and distinct from each other, as far as possible, and each tenant or tenants to live on his or their own stripe [...] 5. Alienation, Sub-division or sub-letting will not be permitted, either to strangers or members of a family, but each holding is to be held entire by some one individual member of it, except in cases where the successor to it may wish to set apart a small portion of it for the support of his parents and for such object only, in which case such portion is at their death to revert to him, and complete the original holding...'.
This volume and other individual year collection volumes list the tenants of East Teevnish, including Henry Bourke, however, the tenants of West Teevinish in all found volumes are listed jointly as "villagers" with no breakdown of individuals. The annual rent from the 1830s through the mid 1840s was £50, but in 1847 it increased to £100.
On 19 Oct 1857 the Marquis of Sligo and assorted other landowners filed suit against the tenants of Theevinish West, claiming they were resident on the land illegally. One would guess they had ignored the edict of 1844. Among the named defendants were Michael Burke, James Bourke, Thomas Bourke, Patrick Giblin, Thomas McGuire, Bridget (widow of Austin) Giblin, Peter McLoughlin, James Scott, Patrick Duffy, James Moran, James Burke, Aply(?) Burke, Mary Burke, Bridget Burke, Austin Kerigan, James Kerigan, John Kerigan, Anthony Faden, and Judith Burke. This is the most complete listing of the tenants of the village of Teevish West found anywhere to date. It is more inclusive than Griffith's Valuations, the only other record found that listed individual householders up to that time.
Among the notes in the lawsuit file, is one stating that the summons to Judith Burke were delivered into the hands of her sister Mary. As the case wore on a number of McGings, residents of neighboring Tonlagee were summoned to give evidence.
|Courtesy of the National Library of Ireland|
MS Map 310 (j) L. OS Sheet 98
The Cancelled Valuation Books for Teevnish begin in 1858 and list the same main defendants as the 1857 ejectments, the books continue to 1869 when all tenants were finally evicted and the townland in it's entirety was either leased to John Egan or held by the Marquis.
There are more records for the area. In 1874 there was a complaint against John McGing for building an illegal wall in Teevnish West. There are also proceedings against John Egan for non-payment of rent and there are entries in a Journal of costs for the farm at Teevnish. Unfortunately there was nothing more on the Burke families of the townland in the records I had time to go through.
Teevnish in Library of Ireland Catalog -
Permission to use items on blog (If you want to use items from this blog, you must request permission from the library)
- MS 40,890/2(17) Conveyance of land in quarter of Teveenish [Teevinish, barony of Burrishoole] by Davy Reagh McPhilbin of Bownrawer to Sir Theobald Bourke. 3 Nov 1612. 1 item
- MS 40,978/13 Legal papers re ejectment on title of tenants on lands of Teevinish West. 1857, 1859. 4 items
- MS Map 310 (j) L. OS Sheet 98 [fragment of]. Teevenish West and Tonlagee were marked-up.