Tenants in Naas and Mauricetown, Co. Kildare in 1753-73

Small Sources 52: This is a list of 44 tenants on the Estate of George Lattin in the area of Naas and Mauricetown (or Morristown), Co.Kildare in the period 1753 to 1773.  Morristown is in the Civil Parish of Old Connell, and close to the town of Naas.  The original document is in the National Library of Ireland (NLI Ms. 9636).  It is a bound hard-cover rental in the Debit/Contra style   (see our article on Rentals for an explanation)  with additional loose-leaf papers inserted.  The account for each tenant lists the rent due, and the payments made.  An example of a ‘credit’ page from the account of Martin Nowlan is below showing how he paid his rent of 10 shillings (on a plot of bog-land).  In 1764  he paid in the form of ‘4 loads of straw’; in 1765 by cash; and in 1766 and 1767 by ‘drawing’ or hauling turf on behalf of the landlord.  Such ‘in-kind’ payments are very common in rentals.  In 1770 the holding was transferred to Walter Nowlan (possibly a son)   who paid in cash up to 1772.    The images below were created by Ancestor Network and are reproduced courtesy of the National Library of Ireland.  We have also published other blogs of Kildare interest.  See the list at the end.

The Lattin family were Catholic, which was unusual among estate-owning families in the Ireland of the time, and were patrons of many local Catholic institutions and causes.  A detailed study of the family and their tenants is in the book “Morristown Lattin, County Kildare 1630-1800: the estate and its tenants” by Emma Lyons.  It is available from Four Courts Press.  Turtle Bunbury’s website also includes an article on their history and some of their colourful members. In addition to a small estate with rental income, they were also successful merchants in the area.  An account of the great divide in lifestyles between landlords and their tenants is in our blog entitled ‘Eye-witnesses to our ancestors‘ which summarises the accounts of travellers to Ireland in the period covered by this document.

Some uncommon abbreviations are used including Rd. = Roderick?; Timy. = Timothy; Lau. = Laurence; as well as the more common Wm. = William, Chas. = Charles; and Mich. = Michael.  There is also Ob. whose meaning is unclear.

If you are interested in information on the specific families listed,  some may be included in our e-book title ‘Sources for Irish Family History 2021  which lists 6,500  books and articles on over 2,500  Irish families.  The sources listed contain a wealth of information in the form of articles and books. The full details are described in one of a blog.

Several old Irish personal names are also included including Ferral and Darby.  Note also that several tenants are listed as ‘Esq.’ an abbreviation of  Esquire, which was a title of respect for men of higher social rank, e.g. landed gentry above the rank of gentleman.

Ancestor Network will offer 1 free hour of research by a professional researcher to conduct further research on these individuals, or on other tenants of the estate. We can also obtain images of the original documents. Click here and quote ‘KildareSS52’ in the subject line. We also publish ‘A Guide to Tracing your Kildare Ancestors‘ co-written by eminent local historians Mario Corrigan and James Durney, and by genealogist Karel Kiely.

Figure 1. Sample page from a tenant account showing the payments made by Martin Nowlan for his holding.

Tenant Names 

Chas. White

John Cormack
Thos. Flood / Peter Mohan
Martn. Nowlan, set to Walter Nowlan
John Byrne
Rd. McGuire
Mr. John Gale
Mr. Jon. Mangan
Mr. Wm. Rose
Darby Duggan
Walter Nowlan
James Hussy
John Kennedy Esq.
John Loyns   Mercht.          (Probably a form of Lyons) 
Francis Ludford
David Flood
Timy. Loyns                         (Probably a form of Lyons) 
Richd. Archbold
John Wolf Esq.
Lau. Misset
Thos. Burgh Esq.
Ob? Eustace
Bar. Barnwell                 (possibly Barnabas ?)
Andrew Delany
Richd. Martin
Esqrs. Pat Dunn: Donnelly
Esqrs. Rd. Eustace
Esqrs. Mich Beaghan
Thos. Keaghan
Esqrs. John Cahill
Esqrs. Cathn. Neil, Jon. Kelly
Mich. Cosgrave
Pat Doyle
Wm. Willson
Mr. John Mangan
Patrick Murphy
Richd. Lyons
Ferral Cormick              (mentioned in account of Martn. Nowlan)

The tenants below are on a separate loose sheet in the ledger headed ‘Tenants in Naas on George Lattin’s Estate‘  (see original below).

Terens Dun                   (a form of Terence)  
Edmond Bourk
Thomas Murphy
James Reilly
James Eustace
Michael Magra              (Probably McGrath)

Figure 2. Extract from a loose page in the Rental ledger with list of tenants.


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Further General and Kildare articles in our series on Irish Family History sources include:


Kildare Sources