This little girl is the only one of my ancestors, back to 1800, not born in south Ulster.

It brings to mind another little girl, her great-grandmother, who was born in India about 1794 and married 11 years later.

Picture of Elsie Henry
Family Genealogy By Peter Morell McWilliam

Family Stories

Shannock Estate

Will of Rev John Harris Morell of Cumry Lodge, Ballybay, who died 4th August, 1888; proved at Armagh by Rev James Morell 1st October, 1888; effects £3,453 10s 10d

Son, Rev James Morell [inherits lands of Cumry]
Son, Dr Lowry Dickson Morell [inherits interest in Manor of Shannock]
Son, John Harris Morell [inherits lands in Drumummery, Co Monaghan]

How did he acquire an interest in the lands of Shannock and Drumummery?

John Harris was his grandfather and so his inheritance of Drumummery came directly from him; the Shannock inheritance is more complicated.

Shannock Manor (Plantation Grant)

This Flowerdew is deceased, and his wife holds this 1000 acres, called the proportion of Lisreskeryn.
(Erected into the Manor of Shannock in 1629. (Hill, 482).)
Upon this there is a large round Bawne of Lyme and stone, not 5 foot high, for it was not finished but it is built upon a Rath, with a deep moat about it and hath a gate to shutt. Within the Bawne there is a small castle of lyme and stone, 25 foot long, 20 foot broad; with a round Tower at one corner, 3 stories high, wherein Mr. Stephen Allen, his wife and children are dwelling, and he hath good Muniment upon the Demeasne and there are 6 English Families near the Bawne.
We finde planted upon this land of Brittish Birth and Descent:

Fee Farmers, 2, viz. :
1 haveing 180 acres.
1 haveing 60 acres.
Leaseholders for yeare, 5, viz. :
1 haveing the howse and 420 in lease for yeares.
3 haveing 120 acres a yeare.
1 haveing 30 acres.

View of Shannock North Side

Map of Shannock

View of Shannock South Side

Manor of Shannock

My great uncle Jack’s mother died when he was four years old so he and his siblings were brought up by her sister, Marion. He remarked about her that;
Women of her kind had usually no formal education whatever, and often did surprisingly well without it. Their power of memory was uninjured. Someone taught them to read and write. Their main intellectual interest was in family genealogies and relationships. To a great extent they kept the tribal history. At the settlement of the Shannock estate, which was extremely complicated, a lawyer said to my aunt that they were very pleased because they had found out that so-and-so was the father of so-and-so. But said my aunt, he was never married. For goodness sake said the lawyer, don’t ever say that to anyone, or we’ll have to begin again. We have got it all fixed up. This would have been about 1908 when the estate was finally wound up in the Land Courts and sold to the tenants.
This comment sparked my interest in the Shannock Estate and what follows is an attempt to follow the history of the ownership of the estate through a combination of deeds and genealogy and to rediscover some family history which was known to the family back in 1900.

The first Ordnance Survey map, ca. 1835, shows a ruined castle in the townland of Shannock in the part of the Parish of Clones in Co Fermanagh about 3 miles from the town of Clones

The site of the castle which was the centre of the grant of 1000 acres made to Thomas Flowerdew in 1610
The manor of Shannock was near the village of Magheraveely, two miles from the Monaghan border (& Clones).
By 1641 the owners of Shannock castle were Arthur Champion who was a Dublin merchant and his wife Alice. In the rebellion of that year, it was attacked. At the time a Court Leet was being held. This was a local court which landlords such as Arthur Champion were bound to hold as part of their grant. It dealt with minor criminal matters, petty thefts, broken fences, rights of way and recovery of minor debts. When the court was over, some officials and several of the local landholders remained at the castle. The raiders obtained entry by pretending that they had caught a man stealing sheep and were bringing him to the court. They killed Arthur Champion and several of his companions and the castle was burned out. Alice fled to England where she re-married.
The estate was sold to an Englishman, Emery Hill in 1646 and then to John Corry, a Belfast merchant, ancestor of the Earls of Belmore at Castlecoole. Gilbert Eccles obtained the manor in 1656.
In Fermanagh, History & Society, Gilbert Eccles is described as a merchant and freeman of Belfast - pg 173 while the Tyrone version suggests he was of Lancashire birth.
However there also exists a Scottish pedigree tracing his decent back many generations. This suggests he was born in Ayrshire in 1602 and settled in Ireland. He was styled as Sir Gilbert Eccles of Shannock Manor when he served as High Sheriff of Fermanagh in 1665, and succeeded by his son Daniel of Shannock, High Sheriff in 1675. In 1671 he purchased the Manor of Fintonagh from Arthur and Dorothy Meredith. A third property, the Manor of Rathmoran, was settled on his son Joseph.
The Shannock property passed to Daniel’s son, Gilbert. Gilbert took out a mortgage on the property which was not redeemed at the time of his death when it passed to his older brother, William. In turn William passed it to his uncle, Joseph of Rathmoran. By his will of 1721 Joseph left it, and Rathmoran, to his only (surviving) brother Charles who had inherited the Fintona property.
In 1743 Charles’ eldest son, Daniel, made out a deed of settlement in which he made provision for the younger of his eleven children. The Ecclesville/Fintona estate passed to his eldest son, Charles and the Rathmoran estate to his second son, Robert. It is this Robert who features so extensively in the Vestry Minutes of Clones Parish. Daniel had settled money on his eldest daughter, Frances, who had married John Dickson of Ballyshannon in 1741 and he stated that he had also provided for his second daughter, Anna, although she doesn’t seem to have married until about 1856.
The other children were to receive up to £3,000 out of Shannock and a distribution of £6,000 out of the Manor of Rathmoran. The precise distribution could be decided by a subsequent deed or by the wills of Daniel or his wife, Mary Lowry. In the absence of such direction it was to be ‘share and share’ alike. Although the deed started by stating it was for the benefit of the younger children, Daniel, Mervyn, James Lowry, Isabella, Elizabeth, Margaret & Mary, in the event no further disposition was made and the two elder daughters, Frances and Anna appear to have been included. Special provision was made for Daniel, jnr, who may have been handicapped.
Daniel died in 1850 and Mary in 1855. In 1856 Anna, on her marriage to Nicholas Coyne, made over her share in Shannock to her siblings in return to £3,000. In 1777 Frances made over her share to her son Thomas Dickson but I have found no further trace of it.
Isabella married Rev Francis Lucas who was curate of Clones during the 1750.
I am descended from both Frances Dickson and Isabella Lucas, hence my interest in the inheritance of the Shannock estate which remained in the family till it was finally wound up in the Land Court and sold to the tenants in 1908.
Over the years, the rents of the property had been shared by an increasing number of Eccles relatives which explains why in Griffith’s Valuation ca. 1864 for several townlands the Lessor is “Mrs Dixon and others”. The Thomas Auchinleck here, who held the townlands of Shannock and Shannock Green is probably part of the extended family too for a Jane Eccles of Shannock had married a Rev. Alexander Auchinleck in 1784.
The townland of Bunnablayneybane, also part of the Manor of Shannock, was held by Thomas Lucas. He was administering the share of the descendants of Fanny Anne (Harris) Lucas at the time but it is not clear whether he held this townland on their behalf or on his own, since he would also have had a share in his own right.

Map of Shannock Townlands

Townlands defined as part of the Manor of Shannock in the Tithe Applotment Books; Shown in pink (& Grey)
Anaheel, Anahilly, Anananim, Big Follam, Bonablanabawn, Carnmore, Carrickacress Glebe, Cornacrieve, Cornamuckla, Cortanna, Crochnagross, Crumaghey, Dernacly, Drestern, Drumbroughas, Drumerwinter, Drumswords, Erasalla, Esindara, Gortindarra, Grahagolea, Killaliffer, Kineron, Knocknalusset, Lackey, Lisrace, Lisroon, Little Follam, Mullicavan, Mullins, Mullivaum, Nappagh, Shanack, Shanack Green, Shanaghey, Tonity bog, Tatantonagon, Tatnageeera, Tatnagoland, Tattymorris, Tonydrumollard

Townlands held by Thomas Auchenleck in Griffith’s Valuation;
Shannock, Shannock Green
Townlands held by Mrs Dixon & ors in Griffith’s Valuation; Shown in Green (& Grey)
Annaghard, Annagheel, Annynanum, Cornacreeve, Cortaher, Cortrasna, Crocknaboghil, Cromaghy, Derrynacley, Dresternan, Drumbrughas, Follum Big & Little, Greaghacapple, Greaghacholea, Killylifferdoo, Lisroon, Mullycavan, Shanaghy, Tattymorris, Tonity Bog, Tonydrumollard
Townland held by Thomas Lucas
Bunnablayneybane: This townland is also mentioned in the 1801 deed including John Harris. Thomas Lucas appears to have been acting as agent for the descendants of John Harris and Fanny Lucas in 1860/61. Whether he held this townland on his own behalf or on their behalf is of course unclear.

Townlands mentioned in 1743 deed
Shannocks, Eighter Castle, Killernishy, Shankillercashe, Anaghkal, Tatrimacmorris, Cavanaghlackan, Anaghard, Annaghhilly, the Green, Lacky, Annahony, Tandavage, Crumaghy, Cavan, Mullycavan, Lisroone, Gromydew, Drasternan, Cortiosine, Drumbrohy & Killeferdue
& Cornamucking, part of Manor of Mount Sedborough (Note that in TAB it was in Shannock)

Lands described in deed – 535;173;350260 -.29th Jan 1801 – in so far as I can interpret them; John Harris was the 1st party in this deed and his wife Frances Anne the 2nd party.
Annaghard, Annagheel, Annaghilly north & south, Bonablanabawn, Cortanna, Cortrasna, Cornacrieve, Crocknagros, Drestern, Drummerwinter, Drumbroughas, Dernacly, Follum Big, Middle & Little, Grahagolea, Killylifferdo, Lisroon Mullycavan, Shannock mill, Tonnity Bog, Tonydrumollard, Tattymacmorris – All in the Manor of Shannock
Cornamuckla, Corabrien, Shanaghy – All in the Manor of Mount Sedborough
Anananim (under lease from Daniel Eccles and Hewetson Reynolds NB he was a son of Margaret Eccles and possibly entitled to a share of the Shannock estate)
Clonkeen, Lisalilly & Drumummery in Co Monaghan

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