Hatter's Castle?

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Where: Leinster, County Wexford, Ireland

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When: Unknown

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Ballynastragh House, Gorey, Co. Wexford looks like the perfect doerupper for a modern hotel with it's fine grounds, castellations and lovely bay windows. Who did it belong to when Mr. French came calling and what is it like now?

Photographer: Robert French

Collection: Lawrence Photograph Collection

Date: Circa 1865 - 1914

NLI Ref: L_ROY_07931

You can also view this image, and many thousands of others, on the NLI’s catalogue at catalogue.nli.ie

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Owner: National Library of Ireland on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 3855
robertfrench williamlawrence lawrencecollection lawrencephotographicstudio thelawrencephotographcollection glassnegative nationallibraryofireland ballynastraghhouse gorey cowexford fauxcastle monkeypuzzletree andespine

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    nl042

    • 26/Oct/2021 07:00:26

    Owned by Sir Thomas Esmonde and burned in March 1923, apparently. https://wexfordcivilwararchaeology.com/2018/02/17/the-destruction-of-ballynastragh-house-gorey-march-1923/

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 26/Oct/2021 07:46:53

    The lady of the house and a gardener (?) looking fairly 1910-ish in a neighbouring photo - catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000319609

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    Niall McAuley

    • 26/Oct/2021 08:03:16

    Sir Thomas Edmonde at thepeerage dot com. There is a "new" house on the site dated 1937 at the NIAH which says it has a connection with the Esmondes up to Sir John Henry Grattan Esmonde (1928-87), sixteenth Baronet. thepeerage says Sir Osmond Thomas Grattan Esmonde, 12th Bt, was a TD for Wexford from 1923-36. And Sir John Lymbrick Esmonde, 14th Bt, was a TD from 1937-43 and 48-51. Sir John Henry Grattan Esmonde, 16th Bt, was a TD from 73-77. The current Bt, Sir Thomas Francis Grattan Esmonde, 17th Bt is a doctor and surgeon, not a TD.

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 26/Oct/2021 08:09:20

    [https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]] here they all are in the 1901 Census

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    John Spooner

    • 26/Oct/2021 08:12:51

    FUN FACT (courtesy of Feeman's Journal Saturday 17 March 1923 in its 'obituary' for the building): Since 1620, there had been eleven Baronets of Ballynastragh, all but one of whom had been turned out of their home by their political opponents.

    "That family was Irish and Catholic; yet it clung to its abode for centuries in spite of wars, persecutions, and penal codes. In the early Norman times the name of Esmonde figured prominently in Wexford affairs. The first of the religious persecutors, Henry VIII, dispossessed Marcus Esmonde of Ballynastragh. Later Patrick Esmonde was dispossessed by Elizabeth, and James Esmonde by James I. Cromwell, William III, and Queen Anne each in turn confiscated the family property. After that there was tranquillity until 1798, when John Esmonde—grandfather of the present Baronet—was hanged as a rebel, and his children had to flee the country, until eighteen years later, when the 9th baronet recovered Ballystranagh again."
    "amazing pertinacity" is the phrase used by Freeman's to describe the family's quality in "clinging to their ancient seat through the vicissitudes of all these centuries of history"".

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 26/Oct/2021 08:19:12

    Mr French took another three photos, possibly earlier (due to the lady's different dress). The house is looking slightly shabby, and there is no flag flying ... catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000317365 catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000330887 catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000330886

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    National Library of Ireland on The Commons

    • 26/Oct/2021 08:35:25

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner Good story.

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    BeachcomberAustralia

    • 26/Oct/2021 08:52:04

    Sir Thomas in 1887 (aged 26) - From - catalogue.nli.ie/Record/vtls000187199/Home

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    suckindeesel

    • 26/Oct/2021 09:53:55

    On the 25" arcg.is/T8Oi

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    suckindeesel

    • 26/Oct/2021 12:30:52

    ‘Ballynestragh, the beautiful residence of Senator Sir Thomas Henry Grattan Esmonde, Bart., about three miles from Gorey, County Wexford, was set on fire on Friday night, and burned to the ground… The only occupants of the house at the time of the outrage were Colonel Laurence Esmonde, his brother, together with five servants. The raiders, of whom there were about 50 in all, forced an entrance through one of the lower windows at about 9.30 pm, and gave the occupants ten minutes to get ready. They were kept under armed guard in an out-building till the house was well alight, the rooms and furniture having been sprayed with petrol. With the permission of the man in charge, Colonel Esmonde removed the golden chalice and sets of vestments from the beautiful little chapel in the upper portion of the building before the raiders had commenced their work of destruction. These articles are all that was saved. With the aid of a fairly strong wind, gas bombs being also used, the flames made great headway, huge tongues of fire rising towards the sky. They were seen at least ten miles away. The garrison of National troops at Gorey, attracted by the fire, arrived shortly after 11 o’clock, about half an hour after the raiders had left, but they were too late to save the building. Only the bare walls of it remain’. Irish Times (March 12th, 1923, p. 6).

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    nl042

    • 26/Oct/2021 16:55:57

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/gnmcauley I have to say Osmond Esmonde is a great name. :-)