Sunday, 4 December 2016

Rosslea Manor

THE MADDENS WERE MAJOR LANDOWNERS IN COUNTY FERMANAGH, WITH 10,498 ACRES

The name MADDEN or O'MADDEN is among those which claim descent from the Milesian colonizers of Ireland.

THOMAS MADDEN, of Bagottsrath, near Dublin, comptroller to Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford, Lord Deputy of Ireland, was eldest son of John Madden, of Bloxham Beauchamp, Oxfordshire, and brother of Robert Madden, of Donore, County Dublin, ancestor of the Maddens of Meadesbrook, and, in the female line, of Oliver Goldsmith, the poet.

He married Elizabeth, heiress of William Pettiver, of Middleton Cheney, Northamptonshire.

This gentleman died in 1640, leaving his eldest son,

JOHN MADDEN (1598-1661), of Maddentown, County Kildare, and Enfield, Middlesex, one of the attorneys of His Majesty's Court of Castle Chamber, and general solicitor for parliamentary sequestrations, 1644-49.

Mr Madden espoused, in 1635, Elizabeth, daughter and co-heiress of Charles Waterhouse, of Manor Waterhouse, County Fermanagh.

He was succeeded by his second son,

DR JOHN MADDEN (1648-1703), of Manor Waterhouse, County Fermanagh,  who wedded firstly, in 1680, Mary, daughter of Samuel Molyneux, of Castle Dillon, County Armagh; and secondly, Frances, daughter of Nicholas Bolton, of Brazeel, County Dublin.

Dr Madden was succeeded by his son (by his first wife),

THE REV SAMUEL MADDEN DD (1686-1765), of Manor Waterhouse, Rector of Newtownbutler, County Fermanagh, who was one of the founders of the Dublin Society, and a great benefactor to his country, known in the family as "Premium Madden".

Dr Madden, who married Jane Magill, of Kirkstown, County Armagh, was succeeded by his third son,

JOHN MADDEN, of Maddenstown, County Monaghan, who wedded, in 1752, Anne, daughter of Robert Cope MP, of Loughgall, County Armagh.

He died in 1791, having had, with four daughters, a son,

SAMUEL MADDEN (1756-1814), of Maddenstown, now Hilton, County Monaghan, Lieutenant-Colonel, Monaghan Militia, who married Katherine, daughter and heiress of the Rev Charles Dudley Ryder, and granddaughter of the Most Rev John Ryder, Lord Archbishop of Tuam.

Colonel Madden left issue,
John, of Hilton Park;
CHARLES DUDLEY, of whom we treat;
Catherine; Anne; Charlotte; Maria Alicia.
Colonel Madden's younger son,

CHARLES DUDLEY MADDEN (1784-1827), Lieutenant, 4th Dragoons, wedded Harriet, daughter of the Rev Michael Baxter; and had issue,
Edward, lieutenant, 1st Dragoons; died at Berne, 1842;
JOHN, of Rosslea Manor;
Harriet, m to the Rev J Gabbett;
Catherine, m to C Ensor.
The eldest surviving son,

JOHN MADDEN JP DL (1819-), of Rosslea Manor, County Fermanagh, High Sheriff, 1848, Lieutenant, 41st Regiment, married, in 1847, Clara Elizabeth, second daughter of the Rev J Spencer Knox (eldest son of the Rt Rev and Hon William Knox, Lord Bishop of Derry), and had issue,
CHARLES DUDLEY, b 1851;
Walter Wilmot, b 1853;
John Beresford, b 1855;
Clara Kathleen; Isobel Christina; Alice Wilmot.

ROSSLEA MANOR or Spring Grove, County Fermanagh, was a Georgian mansion of two storeys over a basement.

It was enlarged and altered in the mid-19th century by John Madden, when a third storey was added as well as a substantial single-storey wing.

This wing contained a dining-hall, which doubled up as a ballroom 90 feet long.

The house was destroyed by accidental fire in 1885.

*****

TODAY the stable-yard is privately owned and well maintained.

The central section is of five bays and two storeys, the central bay breaking forward and surmounted by a bell cote, beneath which is a half-lunette window.

On either side, single-storey extensions, each with a central, tall, square lantern.

On one side of the yard is a two-storey, three-bay house with a large one-storey projection at the front containing the entrance door.

This building is adjacent to the site of the Manor House (now a field within the woods).

The walled garden - interior a jungle - remains: It measures, by estimation, 70 by 150 feet.

Very few trees of interest remain: Three old larch, one now dead; several Irish yew; a monkey puzzle; and a small number of beech and oak.

If there are exotics, they're well hidden.


The Maddens left Rosslea Manor and went to live in Aghafin House, between Clones and Roslea; and they then emigrated to New Zealand where the last of the male line, Ian Beresford Madden, died in Auckland about 2009.  

Two spinster sisters continued living at Aghafin until the last one died in 1942.

Originally the Roslea estate was acquired by the Rev Samuel Madden DD, of Manor Waterhouse, for his fourth son, Edward, who married Charlotte Crichton. 

They had no children and the property was then left to the oldest surviving branch, the Hilton Park Maddens, who subsequently passed it to Colonel Samuel Madden’s second son, Edward’s great- nephew, Charles Dudley Madden.

The late Ian Madden, of Auckland, was a considerable family historian and left diaries, albums and other family records to the Harrowby Manuscript Trust, Sandon Hall, Staffordshire.

Eventually John Madden died in 1903, aged 83.

He is buried in Clogh graveyard.

At his funeral four horses drew the hearse and six chosen Royal Irish Constabulary officers acted as pall-bearers. 

The family lingered on until 1940 when the last local member of the Madden family, Miss Isobel Madden, died.  

The gutted remains of Rosslea Manor were demolished in 1914, what was left being converted for use by the Forestry Service.

The estate remained in the ownership of the Madden family till the 1930s, when some of it was sold; further sales taking place from 1942 onwards.

The stable block survives. The estate at one time boasted ornamental gardens.

Exotic trees still feature and the walled garden is intact. There are stands of mature hardwood.

Part of the importance of this site today is its proximity to Rosslea village.

Woodland walks can be enjoyed along the meandering River Finn.

There were formerly fine views from Island Hill, where stands a ruined garden building.

A Georgian-Gothic gate lodge has since been demolished.

Rosslea Manor belonged to a cadet branch of the family, having been built for the youngest son.

A reader has very kindly sent me further information about the estate, which was surveyed and mapped in 1777. below are observations made at the time:


The Manor of Slutmulrooney is situated four miles north of Clones, a Market Town. It is in general an indifferent tract of ground being for the most part a cold light soil and subject to floods. 

A multitude of lakes and rivulets deriving from the mountains form and empty themselves into one principal river which for want of an adequate fall rises at successive rains and overflows all the adjacent parts. 

The meadowing throughout this Manor is poor, scarce and precarious insomuch that in many farms the cattle are obliged to feed upon oat straw during the winter months.

Husbandry throughout this entire Manor is low and dispirited. Lime tho’ convenient as to its situation is not used here for manure. 


The tenants, some because of the uncertainty of their tenure and others by poverty, are disheartened from attempting the expense of cutting drains which should be deep and numerous. Even where the ground is occupied by the plough, oats are almost the only grain produced. 

In some parts there are small quantities of barley but as for wheat or any species of winter corn they are utterly unknown. 

Tillage is exceedingly tedious and laborious, the Husband-men being by reason of the wetness of the soil forced to substitute the spade for the plough and are also frequently necessitated to cover the seed with a hand rake. 

The rents appear to be chiefly made up by flax and yarn, indeed the inhabitants of the mountains are said to experience some little help from a produce of butter in the summer season.

Mr. Madden has been very active towards the encouragement of agriculture and improvement of the Estate. 


Besides a new road of about three miles which opens up communication with the high road to Clones about five miles distant, he has at a very considerable expense built a bridge over the River. 

The number of bogs in the country are superfluous and they are in general adjoining loughs and their surface rising no higher than that of the water, without any inclination or fall to assist their draining, the reclaiming of them appears impracticable.’

About Spring Grove demesne: ‘Mr. Madden has built an exceeding good house on his demesne with suitable offices, etc. 
The land has at great expense been well improved, planted and divided, being naturally wet, poor and scrubby. It is at this moment however a most agreeable country residence.’

Comments on the deer park: ‘Mr. Madden has enclosed this park at a very great expense with a stone wall. It is entirely pasture or very wet, coarse and poor. It produces only some scrub and bad bottom and is wholly occupied by deer.’
The Maddens live today at their ancestral home, Hilton Park, near Clones, County Monaghan.

The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland has the Madden Papers in its custody.

First published in January, 2010.

Saturday, 3 December 2016

The Belmont Thumbstick

One of Sir Max Hastings' favourite pieces of kit happens to be his treasured thumbstick, and I can now proudly say that I am the owner of one myself.

A pal and follower of the blog, Stephen, most generously offered to make me a thumbstick several months ago, following my tweet about Sir Max's walking-stick.


Accordingly, I decided to mark the occasion with dinner at Deane's Love Fish restaurant in Howard Street, Belfast, last night.

Coincidentally it also happened to be the ninth anniversary of my blog.


I arrived slightly early, so I was shown to the champagne bar (which happens to be adjacent to Deane's Eipic, recently awarded one Michelin Star.

I had time for a few refreshers, viz. a Tanqueray Ten, Shortcross, and a Swedish number called Hernö (I think).


When Stephen arrived he gave me my handsome new thumbstick, made mainly of chestnut wood and antler.


It also has a distinctive, engraved, sterling silver collar.

I can only imagine the amount of time that Stephen spent on such a beautiful item; such craftsmanship.

At length we were shown to our table at Love Fish, where I had the Crevettes, Garlic butter and Sourdough starter.

I enjoyed it: Juicy, large prawns; rich butter; and a thin slice of bread.

Michael Deane was there in person last night, too.


I had Seafood Pie for my main course; while Stephen had the Galloper's Beer-battered Haddock, Mushy Peas, Tartare Sauce, and Chips.

The ambiance at Deane's is cheerful and jolly, and the staff are all very attentive and eager to please.

In fact Michael Deane was there himself last night.

1st Duke of Montrose

THE DUKES OF MONTROSE WERE THE GREATEST LANDOWNERS IN STIRLINGSHIRE, WITH 68,565 ACRES


According to the Scottish historians, this ducal family is as ancient as the restoration of the monarchy of Scotland, by FERGUS II; and by the same authority, it derives its origin from the renowned GRÆME, who governed that kingdom during the minority of FERGUS's grandson, EUGENE II, which monarch's reign commenced in the early part of the 5th century.

It is certain, however, that no family of Scotland can boast of greater antiquity.

SIR DAVID GRAHAM, Knight, of Old Montrose, Forfarshire, a personage remarkable for patriotism and valour, was one of the Scottish barons employed to negotiate the ransom of DAVID II of Scotland, made prisoner at the battle of Durham in 1346; and Sir David's son,

SIR PATRICK GRAHAM, Lord of Dundaff and Kincardine, became one of the hostages by which the release of the Scottish king was eventually accomplished.

His eldest son,

SIR WILLIAM GRAHAM, of Kincardine, married and was succeeded by his grandson,

PATRICK GRAHAM, of Kincardine, who having been appointed one of the lords of the Regency during the minority of JAMES II of Scotland, was made a lord of parliament about 1445, by the title of Lord Graham.

His lordship died in 1465, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

WILLIAM, 2nd Lord; who had a safe conduct to go into England, or to pass through it into foreign parts, in 1466.

His lordship wedded Lady Anne Douglas, daughter of George, 4th Earl of Angus, and was succeeded at his decease, in 1472, by his elder son,

WILLIAM (1464-1513), 3rd Lord, who was raised to the dignity of Earl of Montrose, 1504-5, in consideration of the gallantry he had displayed at the battle of Saunchyburn, in 1488, wherein his royal master, JAMES III, lost his life.

His lordship fell, with JAMES IV, at Flodden Field, in 1513, and was succeeded by his only son by his first wife, Annabella, daughter of John, Lord Drummond,

WILLIAM (1492-1571), 2nd Earl.

This nobleman was one of the peers to whom John, Duke of Albany, Regent of Scotland in the minority of JAMES V, committed the tuition of the young prince during his own absence in France, in 1523.

His lordship was succeeded at his decease by his grandson,

JOHN (1548-1608), 3rd Earl, who, on the fall of the Earl of Gowrie, the Lord Treasurer, in 1582, obtained the White Staff, which he soon after surrendered to Sir Thomas Lyon, of Auldbar.

He was appointed Chancellor in 1598-9, and held the seals until 1604, when it was required that the Chancellor should be a lawyer.

His lordship was then constituted Viceroy of Scotland, by virtue of which high office he presided in the parliament of Perth, in 1606, when the episcopal government was restored to the Church.

His eldest son,

JOHN, 4th Earl, was appointed President of the Council in Scotland in 1626; and dying in the same year, was succeeded by his only son by his wife, Lady Margaret Ruthven, eldest daughter of William, 1st Earl of Gowrie,

JAMES, 5th Earl.

This nobleman took a distinguished part, in the first instance, on the side of the covenanters, and afterwards, during the civil wars, on that of his ill-fated sovereign, CHARLES I, and became one of the most illustrious heroes of the age.

He was created Marquess of Montrose in 1644, and constituted Captain-General and Commander-in-Chief of all the forces to be raised in Scotland for His Majesty's service.

In 1650, however, during a military attack, he was made prisoner at the house of MacLeod, by whom he was betrayed; whence he was led captive to Edinburgh, and there executed upon a gallows, thirty feet high, in 1650.

His only surviving son,

JAMES, 2nd Marquess, called "The Good", who was restored to his estates and honours at the return of CHARLES II, married and had issue, his son,

JAMES, 3rd Marquess, whose only son,

JAMES (1682-1742), 4th Marquess, KG,  was installed a Knight of the Most Noble Order of the Garter in 1705; and created, in 1707, DUKE OF MONTROSE.
Other titles (Lord Graham & 2nd Duke onwards): Earl Graham and Baron Graham (1722)
The heir apparent is James Graham, styled Marquess of Graham (b 1973), elder son of the 8th Duke.

BUCHANAN CASTLE, near Drymen, Stirlingshire, was the seat of the Dukes of Montrose.

The estate was in the possession of the Buchanan family from at least 1231, but the family line failed in 1682.

Buchanan was bought by James, 3rd Marquess of Montrose, whose son became the 1st Duke of Montrose in 1707.

The architect William Adam prepared designs for the house and parklands in 1745.

In 1790, William Henry Playfair was commissioned by the 3rd Duke to design alterations to the house.

The 4th Duke and Duchess raised and trained racehorses on the estate in the 19th century.

The old house was destroyed in a fire of 1850, and the 4th Duke commissioned William Burn to replace it.

Burn designed an extravagant manor in the Scottish baronial style, enclosing an L-plan tower in a clutch of turrets, bartizans and stepped gables.

The Dukes of Montrose remained at Buchanan until 1925, when it was sold.

In the 1930s the house opened as a hotel, and the golf course was established in the grounds.

Plans for residential development on the estate were delayed by the outbreak of the 2nd World War, during which period the house was requisitioned.

It was used as a hospital during the war, with patients including Rudolf Hess, who was brought here after his flight to Scotland in 1941.

After the war, the building served briefly as the Army School of Education.


The roof was removed in 1954 and outlying parts of the building were demolished.

A number of residential buildings were subsequently built in the castle gardens and grounds.

Proposals were put forward for redevelopment of the house as flats in 2002 and 2004, though both applications were refused planning permission.

The walls of the house remain intact to their full height and are considered to be in good condition.

The ruins are progressively engulfed by trees and plants, and surrounded by a perimeter fence.

First published in January, 2014.

Friday, 2 December 2016

Noble of Glassdrummond

THE NOBLES OWNED 824 ACRES OF LAND IN COUNTY FERMANAGH

JAMES NOBLE, of Glassdrummond, whose arms were "or, two lions passant in pale sable between two flaunches azure, over all on a fesse gules, three bezants", died in 1720, leaving issue, amongst others,
MUNGO, of whom presently;
James, of Clontivern.
The elder son,

MUNGO NOBLE, married firstly, in 1725, Prudence, daughter of Patrick Bredin, of Drumcagh, County Fermanagh, and had issue,
JAMES, of whom presently;
Jerome, an officer in the army;
Susanna; Jane.
Mungo Noble wedded secondly, in 1741, Mary, daughter of the Rev William Leslie, of Aghavea, County Fermanagh, and had issue,
William (Rev), Vicar of Holy Trinity, Cork;
Mungo, East India Company;
Letitia.
Mr Noble died in 1754, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

JAMES NOBLE (1727-80), of Glassdrummond, High Sheriff, 1755, who espoused, in 1755, Catherine, eldest daughter of WILLIAM WALLER, of Allenstown, County Meath, and eventually heiress in her issue to Waller of Allenstown.

She died in 1791, having had issue, four sons and five daughters, namely,
MUNGO HENRY, of whom hereafter;
William James;
James;
Robert Thomas;
Anna Maria; Susan; Leonora; Prudence; Mary Martha.
Mr Noble was succeeded by his eldest and only surviving son,

THE REV MUNGO HENRY NOBLE (1759-1831), of Glassdrummond, Rector of Clongill, County Meath, who married, in 1794, Maria, only child of the Rt Hon and Most Rev Dr William Newcome, Lord Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, by his first wife, Susanna, only surviving child and heiress of Sir Thomas D'Oyly Bt, of Chiselhampton, Oxfordshire.

On the death, in 1733, of her grand-uncle, the Rev Sir John D'Oyly, 4th Baronet, the late heir male, Miss Newcome became ex parte materna, sole heir-general to D'Oyly of Chiselhampton.

On the death of Robert Waller in 1809, the property of Allenstown, County Meath, devolved upon the Rev Mungo Henry Noble, in right of his mother, Catherine Waller, whereupon he assumed the arms and surname of WALLER in addition to those of NOBLE.

By his wife, Maria Newcome, Mungo Henry Noble Waller had issue,
William Henry, of Allenstown;
ROBERT, of whom presently;
James;
Mungo;
Mungo;
John (Rev);
Susanna; Maria.
Mungo Henry Noble Waller was succeeded in his Fermanagh property by his second son,

THE REV ROBERT NOBLE (1796-1870), of Glassdrummond, Rector and Vicar of the united parishes of Athboy, Kildalky, Girley, Rathmore, and Moyagher, County Meath, who wedded, in 1833, Catherine, eldest daughter of the Rev James Annesley Burrowes, Rector of Castleconnor, County Sligo, by his wife, Catherine Stock, daughter of the Rt Rev Joseph Stock, Lord Bishop of Killala, and had issue,
WILLIAM HENRY, of whom presently;
John D'Oyly;
James Burrowes;
Edwin St George;
Robert D'Oyly;
Arthur Annesley Burrowes;
Ernest Newcome;
Shirley Waller;
Helen Catherine; Emily Mary; Maria Louisa.
The Rev Robert Noble was succeeded by his eldest son,

MAJOR-GENERAL WILLIAM HENRY NOBLE (1834-92), of Glassdrummond, who wedded, in 1861, Emily, eldest daughter of Frederick Marriott, of Taunton, Somerset, by his wife, Mary Anne, only daughter and heiress of Francis Gibbons, of Wellingborough, and had issue,
SHIRLEY NEWCOME, his heir;
Vere D'Oyly;
Mawde Lettice; Ethel Emily D'Oyly; Violet Alice Agnes;
Phyllis D'Oyly; Sybil Cholmley Waller.
General Noble was succeeded by his eldest son,

SHIRLEY NEWCOME NOBLE (1865-1920), of Glassdrummond, Lieutenant, 5th Battalion, Leinster Regiment.

IXth Anniversary

Today marks the ninth anniversary of Lord Belmont in Northern Ireland.

Here is my very first entry on the 2nd December, 2007.

Cumulative visitor numbers stand at 2,143,567.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Coolamber Manor

THE BLACKALLS WERE MAJOR LANDOWNERS IN COUNTY LONGFORD, WITH 4,643 ACRES


MAJOR ROBERT BLACKALL (d 1840) served in the Honourable East India Company.

His only son,

COLONEL SAMUEL WENSLEY BLACKALL (1809-71), was educated in 1824 at Trinity College Dublin,  Lieutenant, 1827-33, in the 85th Regiment, High Sheriff of County Longford, 1833, major, the Royal Longford Militia; MP for Longford, 1847-5.
Colonel Blackall was Lieutenant-Governor of Dominica, 1851-57; High Sheriff of County Tyrone, 1861; Governor of Sierra Leone, 1862-65; Governor of the West African Settlements, 1865-68; Governor of Queensland, 1868-71.
Adelaide was the daughter of Samuel Wensley Blackall and Catherine Bond, his wife.

She married Captain the Hon Ernest Grey Lambton Cochrane, son of the 10th Earl of Dundonald, in 1864, though died a few weeks later.


COOLAMBER MANOR, near Lisryan, County Longford, is said to be the finest country house of its era and type in County Longford.

It is built in a late-Georgian/Regency classical idiom, and retains its early form, character and the majority of its early fabric despite the construction of a number of modern extensions to the rear.

The giant order pilasters between the bays of the two main façades, along with the very prominent eaves cornice and blocking course, lend this building a distinctive appearance that is reminiscent of a contemporary seaside villa.

The giant pilasters add interest to the main façade, creating a stepped profile that gives this façade a robust but surprising delicate architectural character.

The full-height three-bay bow to the east elevation is another interesting architectural element that helps to add further visual impact when approaching the building along the main avenue, and creates an imposing and handsome silhouette in the landscape.

The plan of the house is quite unusual, with the stair hall to one side of the building (west), which is lit by an enormous round-headed window opening with tripartite timber sash windows.

The house also retains many notable features and materials that enhance the building, including timber sash windows and cut limestone steps with ornate cast-iron railings to the entrance.


Coolamber Manor was built to designs by the eminent architect John Hargrave, who worked extensively in County Longford during the 1820s.

The house was built for Colonel Samuel Wesley Blackall (1809-71), though may have replaced an earlier house associated with the Blackalls (Major Robert Blackall, 1764-1855, father of the above, lived in Longford in the late-18th century).

Cooamber later became the home of the Stanley family (Burroughs Stanley in 1894); and then the Wingfield family.

It was sold ca 1960 and was in use as a rehabilitation centre until recently.

Extending to 15,255 square feet, the manor house is a three-bay, two-storey over basement residence, built in the late Georgian/Regency period.

Adding to its distinctive appearance, the house retains many of its original features that include timber sash windows, cut limestone steps, and ornate cast-iron railings.

Accommodation comprises four reception rooms, a large commercial kitchen and bakery, two gyms, billiards-room, two shower rooms and fourteen bedrooms.

Accessed through an arch, the two cut stone courtyards have been well maintained over the years and are in excellent condition.

These have been fully converted to include four training rooms, a number of two-bedroom apartments, laundry room, stables, tack room, and some lofted stores.

Adjoining these is the farmyard which features a number of slatted and loose-bedded sheds, silage slabs, a disused dairy, and hay sheds.

There are also two other bungalow residences on the property, both of which have their own access.

The present estate includes good stables and 157 acres.

It stands on its original splendour, to the front of Coolamber Wood, adorned by landscaped lawns and gardens, and a well kept farmyard.

First published in October, 2012.

1st Baron Kelvin

THE BARONY OF KELVIN WAS CREATED IN 1892 FOR SIR WILLIAM THOMSON
 
The family of THOMSON, of whom we are about to treat, is of Scottish origin.

In 1641, it is said that three brothers, James, John and Robert Thomson, migrated from the lowlands of Scotland, during the troubled times of the civil war.

JOHN THOMSON settled in County Down at Ballymaglave, and for nearly two centuries his descendants continued to occupy a farm called Annaghmore, near Spa, Ballynahinch.

His grandson,
 

JAMES THOMSON, had three sons: John, Robin and James Thomson (ca 1738-).

The first two sons, John and Robin, both migrated to Buffalo Valley, New York in about 1755.

On his house, on a quoin of a building now used as a barn, this James Thomson, grandson of John Thomson, cut his name, bearing the date 1707.

The youngest son,

JAMES THOMSON (c1738), stayed in Scotland, and in 1768 married Agnes Nesbitt, who bore him three sons: Robert, John and James Thomson (mathematician).

At this period the Thomsons owned about one-quarter of the townland of Ballymaglave.

JAMES THOMSON (1786-1849), of Annaghmore, near Ballynahinch, County Down, was a teacher of mathematics and engineering at Royal Belfast Academical Institution.

Although originally Scottish, the family were Presbyterians who had been forced to leave Ayrshire in the 1640s during the struggle between the episcopacy of CHARLES I and the Covenanters. They settled in Ulster. James Thomson's father, also called James, was a farmer. 

He married Margaret Gardner in 1817 and, of their children, four boys and two girls survived infancy. 

Margaret Thomson died in 1830 when their son William was only six years old. 

WILLIAM THOMSON was born at College Square East, Belfast, on the 26th June, 1824.

In 1832, his father was appointed professor of mathematics at Glasgow and the family relocated there in October, 1833.

The Thomson children were introduced to a broader cosmopolitan experience than their father's rural upbringing, spending the summer of 1839 in London; the boys were tutored in French, in Paris. 

The summer of 1840 was spent in Germany and the Netherlands. Language study was given a high priority.

William Thomson was educated at Glasgow University from the age of eleven and at Peterhouse, Cambridge. 

In 1846 he became Professor of Natural Philosophy at Glasgow, a post which he held for fifty-three years. 

In 1852 he married Margaret, daughter of Walter Crum of Thornliebank, who died in 1870; and in 1874 he married Frances Anna, daughter of Charles R Blandy, of Madeira.

He discovered the second law of thermodynamics, but also carried out considerable research on electric currents which was to prove invaluable in submarine telegraphy and accounted for the success of the Atlantic cables. 

He also devised a more accurate way of determining the size of the earth.

He invented depth-sounding apparatus, tide gauges, a new type of ship's compass, and instruments for measuring electricity. 

In 1866 he was granted a knighthood.

In 1892, Sir William was elevated to the peerage as BARON KELVIN, of Largs.

In 1896, Lord Kelvin was appointed Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order; and in 1902 he received the Order of Merit, thus becoming the Rt Hon the Lord Kelvin OM GCVO PC.

An exhibition of his inventions in 1896 attended by prominent international scientists was held as part of his fifty years' service as professor.

He wrote prolifically and his works are collected as Mathematical and Physical Papers. 

Lord Kelvin died in Scotland on the 17th December, 1907, and is buried in Westminster Abbey.


Lord Kelvin's statue stands at the entrance of Botanic Gardens, Belfast. 

The Kelvin temperature scale is a memorial to his name.

Lord Kelvin was an elder of St Columba's Parish Church, Largs, for many years.

It was to that church that his remains were taken after his death in 1907.

Following the funeral service there, his remains were taken to his beloved University of Glasgow for a service of remembrance before interment at Westminster Abbey, near the final resting place of Sir Isaac Newton.

Lord Kelvin died without issue, when the title expired.

First published in May, 2011.