Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Dr. Richard JACKSON (abt 1720-abt1768) and the SALEs.

Brick walls aren’t there to keep you out.
They’re there to see how badly you want it.
Lyra McKee quoted in The Guardian 28 April 2019.

When I first read that Dr. Richard Jackson, the brother of Rev. William Jackson (1737-1795), had served as vicar-general to the late Archbishop of Cashel, I had assumed that the term vicar-general meant that I should be looking for a man of the cloth. After spending close to half a day at the Representative Church Body Library, south of Dublin City, looking for an ordained minister named Richard Jackson in the right time frame, I concluded that there wasn’t one – but what to make of that?

As I bused back to my lodgings on the #14 bus, I felt like the character of Carrie Mathison in the TV series Homeland. Over and over again, she keeps asking herself: What am I missing?
Just imagine me at home - much older and less stylish than Claire Danes - staring at the pool table in my study, covered in layer after layer of various maps and documents.
Months later, the penny dropped. Richard Jackson was probably a Dr. of Law rather than a Rev. Dr.. Since he was the first-born son, and given that his father had a legal background, this made sense. Although Vicars-General retain important administrative and judicial functions within the church – they need not be ordained. When Dr. Richard was recorded in the Dublin Registers, the acronym J.U.D. was tacked on after his name. This indicated that he held a doctorate in both church and civil law. From 1761 until his death in 1769 he continued to be listed as one of the officers in the Consistory Court: Metropolitan Court of Cashel, Vicar-General Richard Jackson, J.U.D., Dublin.

Fortunately, there is a record of his time spent as a student at Trinity which gives us a few more leads. The acronym beside his name of S.C. or Socius Comitatus means that he was one of the students who paid double fees and enjoyed certain privileges, including being allowed to complete the course in three years instead of four. Then as now, money talks. These students were seen as the elite of the college and most of them would have seen themselves that way as well. 
JACKSON, Richard, S.C. (Dr. Sheridan), June 1, 1737, age 17; s. of Richard, Dux; b. Ballycastle. B.A. AEst. 1740. NOTE:: AEst means that Richard graduated in the summer.
SOURCE: Alumni Dublinenses 1924 ed.,

Three new facts arise from this entry:
  • Not included in other histories, we now know that the name of Richard’s father was Richard Jackson. NOTE: The description of Dux in the Trinity record is from the Latin word for leader and is a perfect fit with Richard senior’s known profession as Proctor.
  • Since Richard jr. was born abt 1720 and we know that he was the eldest, it is likely that his parents married not long before this. A marriage record would be fun but perhaps impossible to find. Also, since he was about 17 years older than Rev. William, his parents likely had more children in between. If there were other children, who were they? So far, we only know of two more sons, both unnamed as yet. There also could have been daughters since females were pretty much under-reported in the records of the day.
  • This recorded birthplace of Ballycastle is a good fit with contemporary reports which allege that the family came from Newtownards.  For geeks like me, it also helps to know that this townland is in the Parish of Grey Abbey, and in the Barony of Ards Lower in Co. Down. UPDATE: August 10, 2023. I now believe that this Ballycastle is more likely to have been the Ballycastle in Co. Antrim: Ballycastle the town is in Town Parks, Parish Ramoan, Barony Cary. Both things could be true.]
After finding this, I was now convinced that I would be able to find the next clues in the Registry of Deeds – and solve all this (albeit in my usual bumbling way).  I started with Ballycastle, and then shunted over to Dublin. The whole exercise made me feel like a female version of Inspector Clouseau.

Unfortunately, after a day of searching the townland index, I could find no Jacksons connected to Ballycastle. None. Not about to give up, because other work that I had done had turned up scads of them in Newtownards, I then turned to Bethams Abstracts.

Sir William Betham (1779-1853) would have known of Rev. William Jackson, even though he was only 16 years old at the time of Jackson's trial. About a decade after Jackson's death, Betham was appointed deputy Ulster King of Arms and later was promoted to head. While serving in these roles, he doggedly created indexes and abstracts of many thousands of the manuscripts held in the Record Tower of Dublin Castle. His focus was on the landed gentry, although thankfully he also hoovered up other records along the way. This was a vital service to future historians since so much Irish history had subsequently been lost in the fire of 1922. Included in one of his notes, was an abstract of Richard Jackson’ jr.'s will:

Richard JACKSON Dublin Doctor of Laws 17 Nov 1768 proved 24 Apr 1769. Aunt Katherine SALE wife of Dr. Edward SALE.
Obviously, Richard jr. died sometime between writing his will in November 1768 and the date when it was proved in April 17, 1769. The will itself was destroyed in the 1922 fire but this does not mean  another brick wall - merely another approach. Time to revisit the records held in the Memorials of Deeds on Henrietta Street. These memorials of leases and such are indexed by lessor (aka the owner), and not by the lessee (aka the renter). Since I did not know whether Richard jr. was an owner or a renter, I could not be sure what I might find. As it turned out, I hit paydirt.

In my previous post: Rev. William JACKSON - Dead Ends, I mentioned  an aunt on Rev. William's mother’s side who was married to Dr. Sall who was described as many years register to the archiepiscopal court of Dublin. The paydirt was a reference in the Deeds Registry Names Index under Katherin SALE - executor for Dr. Richard Jackson. May 10, 1769. The ink was barely dry on the probate when this was registered.

Whereby Katherin SALE widow & sole executor of the last will and testament of Richard JACKSON of City of Dublin Esq. deceased in consid of sum of £100 transferred to Richard COOPER of City of Dublin Esq. all his the said Richard JACKSONs right Title and Interest and of her the said Katherine SALE as his Executrix on House situate in Great Cuffe Street Dublin containing in front 19'3" and from front to rere 63' to hold to Richard COOPER for term of 241 years unexpired in the original lease made of said premises to the said Richard JACKSON by Henry HAWKSHAW of Newport Co. Dublin Chirurgeon … WITNESSES: Richard HALL and Bartholemew NOWLAN of Great Britain St. Gents SOURCE: ROD: 265-383-176738.  Image 205

What have we learned? Both in this abstract and in the Betham's record, there is no mention that Richard Jackson had a living wife or children. Since Betham's abstracts usually included the names of beneficiaries I suspect that he was unwed, as they say: sans issue.

The new questions raised by this abstract are:
  •  Is the address of Great Cuffe Street significant in terms of other family connections in the area?
  • Is the length of the lease (241 years) significant? NOTE: The memorial just above this memorial and on the same page - #176738 -  indicates that Richard first signed this lease for Great Cuffe Street in 1760, just before he started with the Consistory Court. There are slight discrepancies between the two documents with respect to the term of the lease and the measurement of the depth of the property, but both are for the same place:   to hold from 25 March 1760 for term of 250 years for rent of £26 yearly payable half yearly the said Richard JACKSON to hold the same for seven years and afterwards to be at Liberty in any year after to surrender the said House giving the said Henry HAWKSHAW 6 months notice.
  • Are other nearby leases held by potential relations? NOTE:  Rev. William Jackson’s pregnant wife was staying at Stephens Green during the year before his death. I have yet to find exactly where.
  • Who was Katherine SALE?
The holding which I have outlined with the red square was originally owned by Samuel JACKSON ((1641-1706), son of Rev. Richard JACKSON (1602-1681) of Kirby Lonsdale, Co. Westmorland, England, and his 1st wife, Dorothy OTWAY (1605- abt 1645). After Samuel's death, this holding went to his nephew Richard JACKSON (1673-1730) - NOTE: His dates are not a match for Dr. (at Law) Richard JACKSON. His parents dates also do not fit. The first circled piece beneath is approximately where Dr. Richard JACKSON's house was, and beneath that was  a holding held by Thomas JACKSON a glass seller. In 1764 there was an agreement for another property on the other side of the Great Cuffe Road on behalf of a minor child, John Jackson, son of Thomas Jackson late of the City of Dublin, Glass Seller: All that Dwelling House or Messuage situate on the South Side of Cuff Street in the suburbs of the City of Dublin. Finally, the most easterly holding, near Dawson Street, was held by a James JACKSON who like Samuel JACKSON also owned leases to land and houses in Oxmantown.
It may be that there is no connection between Thomas, James or Dr. Richard Jackson, but two things leap out at me: firstly, the proximity of these three holdings and secondly the mention of 3 full undivided fourth parts of said dwelling house in Cuff Street. Is it possible that Thomas Jackson the Glass seller could be a brother of Rev William and Richard Jackson? That will take more work to suss out, although it is worth bearing in mind.

As for the outstanding question of who was Katherine Sale?, that is where I will kick off the next post. Records of her land transactions have provided the clue which was key to determining the forename of the mother of both Richard and Rev. William Jackson. And along the way, there was one surprising twist. Stay tuned.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Rev. William JACKSON - Dead Ends Blog #1

Depending on your perspective, Rev. William Jackson (1737-1795) was either famous or infamous. Shortly after his conviction as a United Irishman, but before his sentence could be pronounced, he committed suicide in the Dublin court. His timing had purpose. It was to preserve his estate – at least what was left of it – for the use of his pregnant wife, their future child and for William, their thirteen-year-old son. Immediately after his death, dozens of articles and books began to be written about him. The ones written by R. R. Madden, picture beneath, are the ones that get read most often. 

Born in 1798, three years after the death of Rev. William Jackson, Richard Robert Madden (1798-1886) was the youngest of 21 children. The seven volumes of his opus - The United Irishmen – Their Lives and Times- was published in 1843. It ran to numerous editions and frequent reprints.
Even though some of Madden’s errors and omissions are deeply frustrating, there is much to be grateful for. Sure, he lost some of the many family documents entrusted to him and destroyed a few others as well – ones that contradicted his own preconceived ideas, but still. As Leon O Broin wrote, We can accept that Madden tended to utilize a mass of material with scanty regard for order and reliability.” That being said “the work embodies a mass of original material that, but for Madden’s intervention, would have been lost forever …” 

Madden opens his chapter on Rev. William Jackson with a number of tantalizing clues about who the Rev. William Jackson really was:
(my bolding) THE subject of this memoir, though not born in Ireland, was descended from a highly respectable family of a northern county, of the Newtownards branch of the Jacksons, from which the celebrated American general of that name sprung, I am informed by Mr. John M'Adam of Belfast. From an account of his own, given in the Northern Star of the 6th of January, 1794, we learn the following particulars of his family.
SOURCE: The United Irishmen – Their Lives and Times, Catholic Publication Society of America. Shamrock edition, p. 162. This was a 1916 reissue (interesting timing).

This led me to Dead End #1. After reading through the entire January 6th edition of the Northern Star at the Armagh Irish & Local History Library, and not finding the article referred to, it dawned on me that Madden’s reference could not possibly be right. After all, January 6th was three months before Jackson was even charged. I finally found the first of the Northern Star mentions of Rev. William Jackson in  the April 28-May 1 edition. It described his arrest the day earlier on April 27th, 1794.
Yesterday, the Rev. Mr. Jackson, an English clergyman, was taken into custody by Messrs. Carlton and Atkinson, officers of the police, on a warrant under the hand and seal of the Chief Justice of King’s Bench, charging him with high treason. Mr. Jackson was brought before the Chief Justice, and was committed to the New Prison. Mr. McNally attended as his counsel.
We understand that the above gentleman is to undergo an examination before the Privy Council.
Since the Armagh Library’s microfilm came from a version where someone had scissored out the article beneath it, I wondered whether the missing section might have included the article that Madden had referenced. Days later, back in Dublin, I threaded in a different microfilm at the National Library. This time, the image from the paper was intact, but since the article beneath was about the suffering of the poor, it seemed that I was now at Dead End #2.

It took me nine more months before I finally tracked down the article in the Northern Star  which Madden had quoted in his second paragraph. It was in the November 3rd edition. Although this article made no mention of Newtownards, as Madden had done in his opening sentence, at least the reference was verified. One down, many to go.
Mr. Jackson, shortly to be tried on a charge of high treason, is only accidentally an alien to this country, he being immediately descended from a family of the first respectability in Ireland. He is the youngest of four sons. His father officiated in the Prerogative Court of Dublin. His elder brother was Dr. Richard Jackson, an eminent civilian, vicar-general to the late Archbishop of Cashel, and an intimate friend of the late Dr. Radcliff, and that truly respectable character, Philip Tisdall, attorney-general. The mother of this unfortunate gentleman was a Miss Gore, whose paternal estate was situated near Sligo. The aunt of Mr. Jackson (by the mother's side) was married to Dr. Sall, many years register to the archiepiscopal court of Dublin. Thus respectably descended, it can hardly be supposed that Mr. Jackson is an enemy to Ireland, while Irish blood only flows through his veins. His political views of things may have been erroneous; and that is all that candour should permit us to say”."
Not surprisingly, these missing bits behind these facts landed me at Dead End #3. There were now more questions than answers:
  •        Without the forenames for either Rev. William’s mother or for his father, who were they?
  •        Who was Dr. Sall and who was the aunt who had married this Dr. Sall?
  •       Where was his mother’s estate near Sligo? Was it near Lissadell House?
  •        Which branch of the GOREs did his mother descend from? NOTE: Not only did the GOREs have large families, but they also set their various sons up in at least half a dozen counties. To compound the dilemma of tracing any individual son in a family that recycled a short list of forenames, the men often owned land in one county but resided in another. The Gores who were reputed to be of Co. Sligo could just as easily have been related to the Gores from Co. Clare.
 Two new details were added to the above article thanks to a complementary source (my bolding):

The family of this man was very respectable in this country. His father was many years a proctor, and officiated in the prerogative court in Dublin, and maintained a most excellent character. His mother was the daughter of Colonel Gore, of the county Sligo. He was the youngest of four sons, the eldest of whom was Dr. Richard Jackson, an eminent civilian, vicar-general to the late archbishop of Cashel, and an intimate friend of those respectable characters, the late Dr. Ratcliffe, and the Right Hon. Philip Tisdall. At an early age he was sent to the University of Oxford, where he made a rapid proficiency in all branches of scientific and classical knowledge

So who was this Mr. JACKSON who was a proctor of the Prerogative Court in the early 1700s, and who was this elusive Colonel GORE?

Over the next several months, I created a table of deeds for GOREs, SALLs and/or SALEs, as well as another one of Memorials of deeds in Dublin. A year earlier, I had done one on JACKSON Grantors 1708-1799 . The rationale in approaching it in this way was that the Gores and the Jacksons would have had some financial ties to Dublin and hopefully owned or leased property there. With a bit of good luck and triangulation all would be solved.

Clearly, both families had sustained their influence through inter-marriages over multiple generations with various cousins, business partners and/or political associates. Anthropologists label this practice endogamy, and it was practiced enthusiastically in Ireland (and elsewhere) for centuries. By merging assets and keeping their inherited lands intact, these Jacksons and Gores had wielded significant influence both as landlords and politicians for close to 200 years. In 1751, there were as many as nine members of the GORE family – all closely related by both blood and land – who served as MPs in the same Parliament (Illustrative Memoir of Lady Gore-Booth.). The Jacksons were close to matching this number from time to time – specially if you count their Beresford cousins and other relations (JACKSON representatives in the Irish House of Commons.).

With Crossley’s and Betham’s extracts as well as the research from the site curated by Darryl Lundy, as well as my own deeds work, the resulting GORE family tree reveals a Who’s Who of the Irish landlord class. This is not surprising. After all, land was money – both collateral and savings. Banks as we know them today did not exist.  Short term leases, often between relations, freed up short term cash. Because of the frequent inter-generational transfers of assets, back and forth, one transaction was often linked to a subsequent one and historic relationships between the various parties were sometimes noted in the documents. Specially when leases were held for a number of named lives.

After doing what I could with the GOREs, I was now at Dead End #4.  There were several Col. Gores who could have been a reasonable fit, but it was now time to look elsewhere. In the next few posts, I will reveal what the SALL aka SALE connections revealed, and how it turned out that Richard Jackson, the older brother of Rev. William Jackson, was the key. Also, I will reveal Dead End #5 and so on. Stay tuned. All may yet be solved.

The young William Jackson. Where did he come from? Where did he live as a child? How did he come to be convicted as a terrorist - a foreign agent in the service of France?