A late 18th Century canvas and leather bound Deed Box, with original label of Harrington, No. 305 Holborn [London] with marbled paper interior, with brass carrying handle and brass studs. (1)More details ›
Masonic Regalia: A cased collection of The Order Rose Croix de Heredom, Knight of the Eagle and Pelican, belonging to W. Conolly, Apollo University Lodge No. 357, including his silver, gilt and enamel jewels, aprons, sashes, gloves, certificates and manuals. As a collection, w.a.f. (1)
Provenance: Castletown HouseMore details ›
A.L.s. from The Prince of Wales to the Duke of Leinster, 1797
Manuscript: A single page letter dated 17 July 1797, signed ‘George P.’ and addressed to the Duke of Leinster. As a m/ss, w.a.f.
The second Duke of Leinster was a supporter of Grattan, the Patriot Party and the introduction of liberal measures for Ireland. In 1797, however, the government introduced harsh legislation to suppress the United Irishmen. In this letter the Prince (eldest son and eventual successor of George III) thanks the Duke and other Irish Whig leaders for their letter, which presumably expressed concern over the government’s repressive measures: he states his deep interest in the fate of Ireland, his continued supports for conciliation ‘as best suited to the generous temper of the Irish nation, and his regret at the course that has been taken.
* A uniquely important letter on Irish affairs written by the heir to the British throne. (1)More details ›
Gift of the Prince of Wales to Thomas Conolly, 1789
Holland (H.) Architect. A small pocket book (9cms x 13cms) superbly bound in red straight grained morocco and gold stamped with the insignia of the Prince of Wales, containing six cards (each approx. 7.5cms x 12cms). One contains a hand written message from Sir Thomas Dundas (a Councillor of State to the Prince), dated 2 May 1789, presenting the Prince’s compliments to ‘Mr. Conolly’ and requesting his acceptance of the pocket book and its contents. The other five cards contain detailed plans, and an elevation of Carlton House in London, in watercolour and pen, by Henry Holland, Architect, as follows:
* Plan of the Principal Story
* Plan of One Pair of Stairs
* Plan of the Basement Story
* Elevation of the Front next Pall Mall
* Plan of the Stables etc and part of the garden.
* A unique, significant and beautiful item. As a manuscript, w.a.f.
Carlton House, the residence of the Prince of Wales, was substantially rebuilt on a lavish scale in the 1780s by George, son and heir of George III, who maintained here a rival court to that of his father. However, when he eventually succeeded to the throne in 1820 he developed Buckingham Palace as his seat, and Carlton House was demolished.
The pocket book may well have been a reward to Thomas Conolly for his support of the prince’s claim to be appointed regent when George III’s mental health deteriorated in 1788; in the event the King recovered and the crises blew over.More details ›
The Duchess of Marlborough and The South Sea Bubble
Manuscript: Marlborough (Sarah, Duchess of) A lengthy holograph letter of 6pp, dated 10th September 1720, and written from Blenheim [Palace] to Lady Cairnes of Monaghan. As a manuscript, w.a.f. (1)
Though unsigned, the letter is written by Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough, the brilliant, turbulent and self-willed wife of the Great Duke of Marlborough, statesman and military commander of genius. In it she invites her friend Lady Cairnes, wife of the Irish landowner, banker and MP for Monaghan Sir Alexander Cairnes, to come with her husband to stay at Blenheim. There is plenty of room, she assures her (the mighty palace was still unfinished), though she apologises for “the smoaking chimney in your bed camber” [sic] The Marlboroughs had only been in residence for a year, and as the Duke had suffered several serious strokes the Duchess was very much in charge.
The letter was written during the collapse of the South Sea Company, to which the writer alludes. This event, known as the South Sea Bubble, featured an illusory market, frenzied share purchasing, insider trading, bribes to politicians, the recycling of company money, and sheer incompetence (even the slave trade, the most straightforward source of profit, was mismanaged). Many investors were bankrupted, the national economy was severely damaged, politicians were disgraced, and profiteers were heavily fined (though they still remained rich). The Duchess had encouraged her friends to invest heavily – but just before the crash she persuaded the Duke to sell his shares, and the Marlboroughs emerged from the crisis having made a profit of £100,000.More details ›
First Hand News from the Battlefield of Waterloo, 1815
Manuscript: An important 4pp holograph letter endorsed ‘Susan’s letter 18th: an Account of the Glorious Victory at Waterloo June 20th 1815,’ 4pp, incomplete. As a m/ss, w.a.f. (1)
The writer is Susan (nee Charteris), whose husband Lt. Gen. Sir Henry Clinton commanded the Second Division at the Battle of Waterloo. His troops helped to defeat and pursue Napoleon’s Imperial Guard at the end of the battle. The letter is addressed to her mother, widow of the Scottish peer Francis Wemyss Charteris, Lord Elcho.
The Clintons were married in 1799. Unhampered by children, Susan was devoted to her husband and accompanied him on campaign. She records in this letter the march to the battlefield, confusion about the general’s baggage, and details of friends who were killed or wounded in the fighting. Sadly, Susan died a year later, and her heart broken husband became a reclusive invalid for the remaining thirteen years of his life.
* This is a most important first hand commentary on one of the world’s great battles written from a wife’s perspective.More details ›
Charles James Fox to Thomas Conolly
Manuscript: Important 3pp holograph from Charles James Fox, written from Cheltenham, and dated 27th August (year not given) to Thomas Conolly of Castletown House, Co. Kildare. As a m/ss, w.a.f. (1)
Fox was a leader of the Whig party in English politics during the last quarter of the 18th century. Colourful, idealistic and disorganised, he opposed the authoritarian policies of George III and his long-term prime minister William Pitt, spending most of his political life in opposition. In Ireland one of his principal supporters was Thomas Conolly, who was also his uncle (Fox’s mother Caroline and Conolly’s wife Louisa were two of the famous Lennox sisters). Conolly was MP for Londonderry from 1761 until the Act of Union.
In this letter Fox congratulates Conolly on his recent victory; praises him and Grattan for the manner in which they have defended him and the Duke of Portland against “very unfair attacks”, and welcomes the intention to propose Ponsonby rather than Foster for the (Speaker’s) chair.
While the year in which the letter was written is not stated, it may well have been 1783, in which a short-lived coalition government headed by Portland (First Lord of the Treasury), Fox (Foreign Secretary) and Lord North (Home Secretary) passed the Renunciation Act, which confirmed the independence of the Irish parliament from that of England.More details ›
Co. Monaghan: O’Rafferty (J.) A 3pp holograph letter from J. O’Rafferty to the 2nd Baron Rossmore, Lord Lieutenant of Co. Monaghan, and father of the Hon. Henry Westerna, one of the two MPs for the county.
The writer discussed the political state of the county, meetings held by the magistrates, the influence of O’Connell, and the apathy and haughtiness of ‘some shopkeepers and little merchants.’
* An important insight into local politics of Monaghan in the 1830’s.More details ›
The Petition and Lamentation of the Elms at the Cottage
Manuscript: A charming 58 line poem addressed to the Duke of Leinster, dated 23 May 1813, from Walterstown Cottage in which the elms remind the Duke that they were planted by his grandfather and have served the family with devotion; they now plead to be spared the threatened axe. Signed on their behalf by “Umbra, Devota, Virida”. As a m/ss, w.a.f. (1)More details ›
Co. Meath Regiment: A printed receipt from Edward Cane & Sons, Dublin Castle, addressed to Lord Longford (Thos. Pakenham, 2nd Earl of Longford) for the pay of the Demifore Cavalry (a yeomanry regiment in Co. Meath) for the month ending 27th December 1803. As ephemera., w.a.f. (1)More details ›
Manuscript – Rathfarnham, Co. Dublin: Copy of a deed dated 19th January 1741 (1742 new style) stating that John Bloomer had leased Woodtown (Rathfarnham) from William Conolly, now deceased, in 1727, for £210 rent; he has fallen considerably in arrears; now Bloomer agrees to surrender the lease, pay £100 towards the arrears, and make out a bond for the rest. One foolscap page, as a m/ss, w.a.f. (1)More details ›
Castletown House, Co. Kildare: Approx. 25 household and other bills sent to William Conolly, Castletown, mostly c. 1740 – 50’s they are from several suppliers, for poultry, game, wine, dairy produce etc, condition varied, as a coll., w.a.f. (1)More details ›
The Castletown Collection
Manuscript Catalogue: The Plate Book Castletown List of Plate belonging to Thos. Conolly, Esq. M.P. Castletown… County .. Kildare, Sm. 4to 1856 – 1861; May 1873; Sept. 30 1889; & Nov. 9th 1905. In all approx. 30 manuscript pages, with lists of silver & silver plate, and also with some incidental silver objet d’art, written in varied hands, original mor. backed marble boards, with mor. label on front cover. As m/ss w.a.f. An impressive collection. Unique. (1)More details ›
Manuscript Library Catalogue; Carton Library Catalogue, lg. folio c. 1815 cont. hf. calf, with decorated label on front cover. The catalogue consists of approx. 175 manuscript folio pages, of principally 18th Century volumes, but some earlier works, and with later items and early 19th Century works added by probably the hand of Lord A.F. Fitzgerald. The listing is divided into seven different categories, as follows:
A. History, Politics, Divinity
B. Lives and Memoirs
C. Poetry and Dramatics
D. Voyages and Travels
E. Philosophy, Fine Art & Science
F. Miscellaneous Antiquities
G. Novels and Reading
Each entry details where printed, when printed, size, number of volumes and identifies the case, and the shelf number where the volume could be found.
* A unique record of a highly important library, which was disposed over a series of sales, principally in the 1940 & 1960’s. (1)More details ›
Inventory of Carton
Manuscript Catalogue: Inventory of Furniture etc. of Carton House and Offices … 1818, Lg. Atlas folio, binding full reversed calf, with thick blind tooled borders, large mor. label on front cover and a label on spine. v. good and in the one hand.
Index of the different location and rooms 153 in all.
Example Room No. 4 in attic just states “Full of Paintings & Prints” the entire in exhaustive detail.
Housekeepers storerooms with the pieces of each service, counted and listed.
Likewise in the Harness Rooms everything in detail ‘7 feeding bags?”
Carpenter shop, “4 moulding planes, 10 buckets, 4 hods,” etc.
An entry for “Leinster House Linen?”
Inventory carried out after they sold Leinster House in 1814 to Royal Dublin Society.
Together with inventory of the different Gate Lodges, Grand Lodge, Carton lodge Gate, Kelly’s Town Gate Lodge, new Gate House, & Maynooth Gate House.
265 numbered pages. As a m/ss, w.a.f.
* Of Utmost Importance. (1)More details ›
Theatre: Bell’s British Theatre, Vols. 2 – 21, together 20 vols. 12mo L. 1776 – 1781. Engd. plates, ports. etc., cont. tree calf, gilt rope borders, tooled gilt spines, mor. labels, possibly Irish binding. (20)
* Ex Libris John James Diggis La Touche, with bookplate.More details ›
Knott (Mary John) Two Months at Kilkee, 12mo D. 1836. First Edn. add. engd. title, frontis & 5 engd. plts. & plans (some fold.), orig. cloth; Binns (Jon.) The Miseries and Beauties of Ireland, 2 vols. L. 1837, First, fold. map cold. in outline, 9 engd. plts. cloth, Vol. I spine dam. & loose. (3)More details ›
[Tachard (Guy)] A Relation of the Voyage to Siam Performed by Six Jesuits, Sent by the French King … in the Year 1685. 8vo L. 1688. First Edn., add. engd. title, & 24 engd. plts. (ex. 30) some fold., some browning, later calf, rebacked. (1)More details ›
De Vinci (Leonardo) Traite de La Peinture, 12mo Paris 1716. New Edn., Revu et Corrige, engd. add. title with portrait, 33 engd. plts. (5 fold.) later full calf, mor. label. (1)
* Ex Libris. Old Town, Naas, with de Burgh bookplate & stamped “Tha. Burgh’ front cover.More details ›
Story (George) An Impartial History of the Wars of Ireland, In Two Parts, sm. 4to L. 1693. Second Edn. Licence leaf & hf. title, & 14 fold. engd. maps etc., all v. clean, cont. blind panel calf, later re-back. (1)
* Ex Libris A.H. Smith Barry, Fota House.More details ›