18th Century Ulster
Rev William Henry of Killesher parish Fermanagh, stated he could differentiate between the local inhabitants by their characteristics. He noted that the English were neat, and their plantings reflected this. This was also noticeable regarding their houses and tree plantations. The Scots while less fastidious were great believers in soil improvement.
Isaac Butler noted, while travelling through Fermanagh in 1840 that Scots in the Enniskillen via Lisnarrick spoke with a Scots accent, while Lord Edward Wiles circa 1760 noted in the County of Antrim the inhabitants spoke “the broad Lowland Scotch” and used colloquialisms akin to Scotland. There are two trains of thought whether Ireland was populated by Scots or vice versa.
My Bells came from Derryvullan Co. Fermanagh, and documents prove that these Scots were part of the Ulster plantation. I also have another faction of the family McEwan who inhabited both Scotland and Ireland. Family lore tells of my great-great-grandfather born in Derry, Ireland, of Scottish descent. He returned to Glasgow before immigrating with his wife and son to Toronto, Ontario in the mid-nineteenth century. My great-grandfather while born in Glasgow, called himself a Scot of Irish descent as his father was born in Ireland.
The Anti-Catholic Laws in Ireland
- Exclusion of Catholics from holding public office such as Judge MP solicitor Jurist or barrister, a civil servant, sheriff, or town councillor.
- Catholics could not vote or hold office.
- Catholics could not own land.
- Catholics could not lease land for longer than thirty-one-years, and the rent was to equal two-thirds of the yearly value of the land.
- Catholics could not hold arms nor be members of the armed forces nor own a horse worth more than £5.
- If a Catholic landholder died, the eldest son would not inherit the land unless he confirmed himself as Protestant. If he remained Catholic the land was shared by all the surviving sons.
- A ban imposed upon intermarriage between Catholics and Protestants.
- Catholic could not be an orphan’s guardian.
- Many Provincial towns banned Catholics from living there.
- Catholic clergy required to take an oath of loyalty, and then registered, but it was an exile for friars, monks, hierarchy and Jesuits.
- No cleric could wear distinguishing clothes.
- Places of worship could not have a steeple nor display a cross.
- Catholics and dissenters paid tithes to the Anglican Church of Ireland, which was the Established Church
- Catholics could not establish schools or send their children abroad for education.
There was concern over this departure as the Scots in Ulster were fervent weavers and their fear the industry would suffer. This did not prove the case. Immigration all but stopped with the War of Independence in 1770, but once peace was signed it again resumed.
Continuing unrest was continually discernible in Northern Ireland and in 1791 the Society of United Irishmen was founded in Belfast and later in Dublin and elsewhere. The Belfast faction was predominantly middle class Presbyterians. The efforts to suppress it caused it to become a secret club and a plan for rebellion was born.
Rebellion of 1798
The uprising occurred in May 1798 in Leinster and soon spread to Ulster lasting scarcely a week. It was followed by a series of executions, one most notably, the Ulster rebel, Henry Joy McCracken.
An act of union passed in 1800, was something that would define Irish history but at the time was ignored by most Ulster people.
Bell Ancestor files
and should repost my findings soon.