Regattas, Bantry 1882, Baltimore, 1885, Goleen (and Athletic sports) 1894
Baltimore Regatta. 1885
John Francis Levis, (1830-1887) listed at Baltimore Regatta as J.P., mention is made of his steam launch, merchant, Skibbereen, probate 1887 to widow Alice, £4,020. Married 1856 Alice Beamish, Skibbereen, her father George Beamish, corn merchant.
Coutts, Angela Georgina Burdett
Coutts, Angela Georgina Burdett- (1814–1906), Baroness Burdett-Coutts, philanthropist, was born 21 April 1814 in Piccadilly, London, the youngest of the six children of the one-time radical politician Sir Francis Burdett (1770–1844) and his wife Sophia, daughter of the London banker Thomas Coutts. In 1837 she inherited the Coutts fortune from her grandfather’s second wife, the former actress Harriot Mellon, then duchess of St Albans. Having succeeded to this fortune, then that of her parents, who both died in 1844, she took the name Coutts by royal licence. As one of the most famous and wealthy heiresses in England she was a familiar figure in leading literary, social and political circles, but to the British public she was always best known for her philanthropy. While grieving the loss of her parents she became so friendly with Arthur Wellesley, duke of Wellington (qv), that rumours circulated they would soon marry, despite the substantial difference in age. She flouted convention by proposing herself, and, while Wellesley refused, they remained close, though their views on Ireland differed. He offered sound advice on financial matters, which proved useful in her philanthropic work.
Among the causes she assisted were the Church of England, ragged schools, the rehabilitation of prostitutes, scientific research, colonial missions and programmes for rehousing people living in poverty in London’s East End. With Charles Dickens, with whom she collaborated from 1840 to 1857, she founded Urania Cottage for former prostitutes and homeless women in Shepherd’s Bush, Middlesex. Dickens dedicated Martin Chuzzlewit to her. An energetic member of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and president of the ladies’ committee, she provided many drinking troughs in public places. As president of the British Goat Society, she promoted goat-keeping among the disadvantaged to encourage self-reliance.
Like her father before her, she was committed to the notion that Ireland should have its own viable economy, and that measures to relieve distress should go hand in hand with lasting improvements. Her connection with Ireland lies in the support she provided west Cork from 1862, when she first received an appeal for financial assistance from the parish priest of a distressed district, Fr Charles Davis (1827–92). In keeping with her policy of avoiding the ‘demoralising effects’ of handouts, she funded relief stores where basic foodstuffs were sold at minimum cost at Cape Clear and Sherkin Islands, still distressed by the famine. In 1863 she financed the first of three Canadian immigrant parties from the region. Her long-term plan was to promote local industries and agriculture, and with this in mind she sent over a flock of sheep and encouraged an English market for Irish crafts, embroidery in particular. With west Cork facing renewed crisis in 1879 she was again contacted by the local clergy. Acting on the advice of Fr Davis, parish priest of Baltimore, she provided interest-free loans of up to £10,000 to fishermen to obtain the latest boats and fittings for mackerel fishing. The scheme proved highly successful, so that much of the loan was later repaid, leading The Times to comment in 1887 that ‘her confidence in the honour of the poor people has been amply justified’.
Visiting Ireland for the first time in 1884, she was received enthusiastically by the local people, who affectionately dubbed her the ‘Queen of Baltimore’. She returned in August 1887 to open an industrial fishery school in Baltimore, which provided instruction in navigation, boat-building and net- and rope-making. Funded by the government, she and Sir Thomas Brady (d. 1904), the fisheries inspector, had encouraged its establishment. Though in 1880 the British government did not accept her offer of an advance of £250,000 for the purchase of potato seed on the failure of the crop, it took its own measures. In all her dealings with Ireland she remained politically neutral. One of the first women to receive a peerage in her own right (in 1871), she was also the earliest woman to receive the freedom of the cities of London (in 1872) and Edinburgh (in 1874). Despite the disapproval of many relatives and friends, among them Queen Victoria, she married her American-born private secretary, William Lehman Ashmead Bartlett (1851–1921), in February 1881. She died 30 December 1906 at her London residence, and was buried in Westminster Abbey.
Times, 18 Aug. 1887, 31 Dec. 1906; DNB, suppl. 2; Micheal O’Riordan, Catholicity and progress in Ireland (1905); Edna Healey, Lady unknown: the life of Angela Burdett Coutts (1978) (with portraits and photographs); Diana Orton, Made of gold: a biography of Angela Burdett Coutts (1980) (with portraits and photographs); John De Courcy Ireland, Irish sea fisheries: a history (1981); ODNB
Originally published October 2009 as part of the Dictionary of Irish Biography
Last revised October 2009
F. H. De Burgh, possibly Ms. Frances Hussey de Burgh of Kilfinan Castle, Glandore, her father:
The two vast tombs stand side by side (above) in an odd juxtaposition. We scratched our heads in wonder and searched for clues of names and dates while we were there in the churchyard and, later, in records online. Very little is revealed. There are several inscriptions set on carved stone plaques on the pyramid – all impossible to read because of the moss and lichen growth. Over the iron doorway is a lintel inscribed with – I believe – the name John Hussey de Burgh.
Later searches revealed the following:
. . . John de Burgh was born on 10 June 1822 and died 25 April 1887. Page 159 of The Calendar of Wills and Administration 1858-1922 in the National Archives of Ireland records that the will of “John Hamilton Hussey de Burgh late of Kilfinnan Castle Glandore County Cork Esquire”, who died on 25 April 1887 at the same place, was proved at Cork on 6 July 1887 by “Louis Jane de Burgh Widow and FitzJohn Hussey de Burgh the Executors”. Effects £1,246 11s 1d . . .
Isaac Shipsey, fish merchant, Skibbereen. Extended family doctors heavily involved in nationalist politics.
The reason for Baltimore’s emergence as the leading centre of the mackerel industry towards the end of the 19th century and the accompanying prosperity – after more than two centuries of social obscurity and economic stagnation – are explored in this work. Baltimore’s importance as a landing place for mackerel was primarily dependent on non-local fishermen with superior catching power. English fish buyers dominated the marketing and distribution of fresh mackerel to England and cured mackerel to America in the absence of a viable home market. However, the arrival in 1879 of Fr. Davis in Baltimore as parish priest and his collaboration with English philanthropist Baroness Burdett-Coutts, enabled Baltimore to capitalise on the new opportunities afforded by fortuitous changes in the mackerel industry. Despite the short term nature of the economic success of Baltimore as a centre of the mackerel industry, the author shows how this industry created a cosmopolitan blend of people and saw the development of its marine infrastructure and onshore services.
Cave. Probably Cave, Arthur Saunders Oriel: His father, Thomas Saunders Cave, had developed mines at Ballycummisk and Cappagh in the 1850s and 1860s (Cowman and O’Reilly 1988, pp 115-6). Arthur was born in 1854 and his father died unexpectedly in a railway station when the boy was 13. At some stage Arthur lost his sight in a shooting accident (Macay typescript) and was recorded as blind in 1901. He registered himself then as a “mining agent” with his 17 and 18 year old sons as “assistant mining agents”. He had a younger son and older daughter and along with his wifeJane, and two servants lived in a ten to twelve roomed house at Coosheen. In 1889 he commenced mining for baryte on Mount Gabriel and took over Dereenalamone in 1899 in which year he also built a baryte mill on his land as described below. Much of his energy went into raising capital in London but is unlikely that he or anyone else made money out of the mines. By 1911 none of the Cave family were in County Cork.
Schull Regatta 1894