The Cromwellian Settlement of Ireland (1652-1660) by John P. Prendergast. Published by Clearfield Publishing Company, 200 Eager Street, Baltimore MD 21202. 3rd ed. 1922, reprinted 1997. xliii, 524 pp. Indices, maps. Softcover. $42 plus $3.50 p&h.

Ireland's history continues to be turbulent following the conquest by Oliver Cromwell in 1652. The goal at that time was to move all Irish into the barren province of Connaught and settle the rest of Ireland with loyal Englishmen. This book is the story of the events leading up to and including this mass movement of people. The key to remaining in ones home was whether "Constant Good Affection" was shown towards the English army and government at ALL times. If at any time the answer was no then the families were evicted. This judgment included Scots and English who were already established in Ireland, as well as Irish Catholics and Protestants. The book describes in vivid detail stories of the evictees, including those of rank, title and English blood as in the case of Lady Dunsany.

1360 adventurers are listed by name, title or occupation and the amount of money they contributed to the raising of the army to conquer Ireland. These lists were created between 1642 and 1646. Obviously by the time of the successful conquering of Ireland some of these people were dead or had sold their adventures. In addition to these adventurers, land was to be given to the soldiers to pay for their arrears. This book gives in detail accounts of the clearing of the land, the exceptions, the transplanters certificates, and the court processes that went along with the moving of a large number of people.

If your ancestors are from old Irish, Scottish or English families prior to the resettlement, or English after the resettlement, this book may provide lots of clues for you in terms of family movement. There is lots of good history in this volume, making for fascinating reading.

There are two indices. The first is a useful annotated index of subjects, and the second is an index of names.

Reviewed by Paul Milner
BIGWILL v.5 no.1, 1998