Vickery Farmhouse, Post 1784, Ballycomane (Irish: Baile an Chumáin, meaning ‘town of the little valley’), Durrus, West Cork with Carpenter’s Wood Marks.


Ballycomane (1349 acres) (Irish: Baile an Chumain, meaning ‘town of the little valley’). Part of it is Ballinwillin with a boulder burial,with the remains of a millrace which may have been used by monks at the nearby church of Mouliward, ringfort and standing stone pair. Mass rock in Vincent Hurley’s farm. Former graveyard in Sam Attridge’s lands no remains. The oldest family are probably the Hurleys (Vincents), they may have moved from Ballnacarriga outside Dunmanway and Darby Hurley who held Ballycomane Middle was allegedly evicted by Lord Carbery when a rent payment was missed, the farm was then given to the Vickerys c 1770. Interestingly around this time the Marriage Licence Bonds has a Hurley/Vickery marriage.

The devolution of title is as follows, in the early 17th century, the McCarthys of either Scart or Caheragh had the townland and mortgaged it to Sir Walter Coppinger. They defaulted and he went into possession. He backed the wrong horse in 1641 and his estates were forfeit. In the late 17th century the Evans-Freke family of Welsh origin (Lord Carbery) went into possession. The Vickeries as tenant farmers acquire title under the Land Acts in the early 20th century.

The Vickery lease is registered in the Registry of Deeds from around 1784. The Bantry and Durrus Vickeries were heavily intermarried with the O’Sullivan Hurrig family from the marriage in the 1780s of Michael O’Sullivan and Mary Vickey of Whiddy Island. Some in the family claim descent from Michael to O’Sullivan Bere. There are a very large number of worldwide descendants from the Ballycomane Vickeries.

The Vickeries of Ballycomane were prominent n the Church of Ireland in the early 19th century as Vestrymen, the family later converted to Methodism. They were also cess payers representatives and feature prominently as progressive farmers winning prizes at Agricultural shows.

They were one of the few Protestant families in what was a densely populated townland. Other local townland had a a different religious composition depending on the Landlord. On the various Evanson Estates they probably introduced weavers and improvers from the 1730s most likely from Armagh, some like the Crostons from Lankashire  going on DNA matches.

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1830 Tithe Aplottment shows two Vickeries in Ballycomane with a combined valuation of almost £40, very high for the area:

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George Vickery Bantry Quarter Sessions 1842:

Griffith Valuation, 1850 shows the Vickeries as both tenants of Lord Carbery and also the Lessors of a number os smaller farms:

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Prizewinners Bantry Agricultural Show 1860s:

McCarthy RElief Fund 1863:

The 1901 census interestingly George Vickery has both Irish and English, in the house hold return the house is 1st class he also owns the Hurley house possibly working on farm.

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From Ron Price:

Between 1981 and 1990 I made notes immediately after speaking to various Co Cork people about my Cork ancestry. I now wish to make those notes available to anyone interested. Any clarification comments added at this stage are in square brackets. I would welcome any questions or comments.

Source: Maud Vickery (b. 1896) of Donemark Falls, Bantry, Co Cork.

Notes from conversation on 4 May 1983

– A Vickery Family Bible went to the USA and is now probably lost. Someone who copied it showed the original John Vickery’s wife as Catherine Swanton.
– She thinks that the Rooska farm [lived in by earliest John Vickery] was passed to John’s son William, who perhaps had no children. Ownership then passed to the Whiddy branch who rented it out. At present a Sullivan family live in it, having bought from the Vickerys some 20-30 years ago – previously they rented. As a child she thought that the original house was a ruin but the Sullivan occupiers say it is the original.
– The original John Vickery’s tomb is in the old churchyard – straight up from the gate, slightly to the left, opposite ruined church. The Ballycommane branch kept this tomb – a tablet at its side records a 1914/16 burial.
– She thinks the [Vickery] history compiled by the Clancoole people was primarily for children & it contains a number of inaccuracies.
– She says that both Sullivans and Vickerys (she is descended from both) always said Michael Sullivan was descended from the O’Sullivan Beare of Dunboy. Michael Sullivan is mentioned in a book “The Two Chiefs of Dunboy” as a son of McFinnan Dhu (Dereen) of Dunboy Castle.
– Our branch of the Sullians were known as “the Sullivan Hurrigs”.

Notes from conversation on 5 May 1983

– Mrs Phipps [Mary nee Sullivan 1890-1977] told her that she had read that Michael O’Sullivan’s father had lost his farm through trading with the French. He, Michael, later fought a duel with the son of the new owner and lost a couple of toes as a result. Michael was very tall, very quiet and very handsome.
– Mrs Phipps also said that Michael O’Sullivan was a Catholic but allowed his wife Mary Vickery to bring up the children as Church of Ireland. He, however, remained a Catholic all his life and was buried one. He was respected around Bantry for this.
– As a child, she was shown an old wall, since gone, to the right of the present house at Rooska. However, the present occupier Mrs O’Sullivan apparently insists the present house is the original one.

Notes from conversation on 5 June 1984

– She gave credence to the story of the Sullivan family being descended from the O’Sullivan Beare because a Roger Sullivan who was generally known to be a descendant always said (in her youth) that the Sullivans of Tedagh were related to him.

Notes from conversation on 14 Aug 1985

– She heard the story of Michael O’Sullivan’s father losing his farm from Mrs Phipps (I was wrong in thinking she had read it somewhere).
– In the 1920s-30s Roger Sullivan of Reendonegan frequently told Maud they were related. She assumes that he meant through her Sullivan grandmother. It was generally accepted that he was descended from the Dunboy family – he was commonly known as “the last Chieftain”.

House October 2015 occupied up to recent years, bought by Deanes of Crottees in 1930s :







Carpenter’s Marks