A little background to Beresford
At this stage a short extract
from "The Carlow Gentry" may give readers a little
background to the Beresford history.
From pages 24--27. "The Carlow
Gentry" by Jimmy O' Toole 1993. (I.S.B.N. 09522544 0 9)
"The image of Beresford as an
absentee landlord was tough and uncompromising, a policy
carried out with ruthless effect during the time of
agent Charles Doyne. Doyne, whose family had a large
estate in Tullow, was also land agent for the Kavanagh's
of Borris, and with such a large block of tenant farmer
votes under his control, he wielded enormous power
during the political turmoil of the 1830's...
There were few estates in the
county during that period to equal the level of
evictions experienced by tenants of Beresford. In 1836,
the Liberal politician Nicholas Alward Vigors , in a
petition to Parliament, said 86 families had been
evicted in the parish of Bagenalstown during the
previous few years. Fifteen families were issued with
notices to quit in Slyguff, and at one point, Beresford
was accused of having evicted 103 families.
In March 1835 , Doyne was quoted
as having told a meeting of tenants --"that Lord
Beresford was determined to provide a class of tenants
for his estate over whom the priests would have no
influence". In that policy, Doyne seems to have
succeeded because Fr. Andrew Phelan, a curate in
Dunleckney, accused Beresford of "persecuting Catholics
because of their religion".
Seventeen families were evicted
from Kilcloney, and of the 120 acres involved, 100 acres
were given to two Protestant families, and the remainder
to two Catholic tenants. Evictions were a much used
political propaganda weapon capitalised on by the
opponents of landlords at election time; and frequently,
notices to quit -- sometimes not acted upon -- were
added to the statistics of actual evictions. Landlords
were sensitive in such propaganda wars, and in 1841,
Beresford successfully sued The Morning Chronicle for
its inaccurate and libellous description of evictions on
his estate near Tinryland.
The above is a true and
accurate transcript of the original document.
Transcribed by Jean Casey, January