Estersnow (Roscommon)

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Foreground: Site of "Cloughnastookeen"
Foreground: Site of "Cloughnastookeen"

Teach an Chlocháin aka Rockmount House was one of a pair of neighbouring houses built in Tullyboy 1830. Prior to that, Tullyboy had not seen any plantation development. The only point of interest was "Cloghan" aka "Cloughnastookeen" (a large stochán or leaning stone) in the south corner of Tullyboy townland. 

In 1749, Tullyboy was home to 5 families, all Catholic: Peter Glynn, a blacksmith was the road-side resident (opposite what was to become Clogher RC Chapel following the relaxation of Penal Laws). The other residents, Bryan McDermottroe, Michael Carthy and Brian Healy, were all cottagers, save for Bartley Freeman, a shepherd. 

However, Tullyboy's proximity to other Protestant developments at Cavetown and Estersnow would have proven attractive to the discerning gentlemen farmer. 


In July 1830, the construction of a pair of Georgian Country Houses at Tullyboy, was near completion. "Tullyboy House" commissioned by Mr Robert Leland, and "Rockmount House" by Mr Edward Barlow Esq. were convenient to each other, and the road. [Roscommon & Leitrim Gazette - 17 March 1832]:

Leitrim Assises in which James McDonogh and James and Michael Colreavy were indicted for house-breaking and robbery. James McDonough, examined by Mr Blakeney: Knows the prisoner; witness is a relation of his; witness is a mason; was building a house for Mr. Barlow, quite convenient to Mr Leland’s; the prisoner worked for him; witness built both houses; is sure prisoner slept in his house that night; was in the house in the morning when he (witness) got up; has known him for a long time; his conduct with him has been very good. Cross-examined by Mr. Daniel—lt was not unusual for the prisoner to come to witness's house on Saturday night, go to prayers on Sunday, and return to his work regularly on Monday mornings. Direct examination resumed—ls sure he worked for him last July twelvemonth [i.e 1830; police evidence confirmed it took 12 months to apprehend the prisoner]; remained with him till the November following. John McDonough examined—ls son to last witness; knows the prisoner at the bar; recollects the 31st of July; the prisoner came home between ten and eleven o'clock; was not asleep spoke to the prisoner that night, and the next night; prisoner usually came to his father's house on Saturday night. No Cross-examination. Crosley Wm. Ireland, Esq. gave the prisoner a good character. Here the case closed when the Judge charged the jury at some length; they then retired and remained some time in deliberation, and returned with a verdict of not guilty for the prisoner.

Edward Barlow Esq. of Rockmount was a Lieutenant in the Roscommon Militia and a founding member of the Boyle Brunswick Club in 1828.

In September 1830, Mr Robert Leland, applied to the voters register with a freehold value of £20 for "a house and land at Tullyboy". Robert Leyland, Tullyboy was a tenant of Viscount Lorton.

In 1830, while Rockmount was under construction, Edward Barlow appears to have resided at the Hermitage Croghan:


From the FIRST DAY of MAY NEXT: For such Term may be agreed upon. The House, Offices & Demesne Lands of HERMITAGE, Situate between Elphin and Boyle, Carrick-im-Shannon and Frenchpark, all Market and Post Towns, about equal distance from each. The House and Offices are in perfect order, and the lands are so well known that they need no comment; The Demesne, contains about Seventy Acres, all in heart (sic). 

For particulars to Frederick Robertson, Esq., Abbey Boyle; to Edward Barlowe, Esq., on the premises; and to Owen Thomas Lloyd, Esq, 4, Harcourt-street, Dublin. (If by letter, postpaid.) who will close with a tenant, when the value is offered. January 27, 1831. [R&L Gazette]


The House & Demesne of HERMITAGE Will be let from the 29th day of September or 1st November next FOR SUCH TERMS AS CAN BE AGREED UPON. Proposals (in writing only) will be received by Owen Thomas Lloyd Esq. 2, Upper Charlemont Street, Dublin or by Edward Barlow, Esq. at Hermitage who will shew the premises and forward to Captain Lloyd. May 26. 1832.  [R&L Gazette] 

By 1839, "Rockmount" was occupied by Edward Barlow Esq. (valued at £10 14s), and Tullyboy" by Robert Leland (valued at £10). Both houses were identified on the first Ordnance Survey maps. They were gentlemen farmers ( and Cess-payers, eligible to sit on the Grand Jury of Boyle (and later, Boyle Board of Guardians). An Edward Barlow Esq. appears on the voters register with a freehold value of £20 for "a house and land at Blackfallow in the parish of Ardcarne. 

In 1840,  Edward Barlow Esq. of Tullyboy (alias Rockmount) is listed for the ballot to Boyle Grand Jury [Roscommon Journal - 28 March 1840] along with John Irwin of Camlin, John Barrett of Finnor, and his neighbours: John Duke of Clogher alias Moylurg, and Michael Forde of Estersnow. 

By January 1844, Barlow was in poor health and Rockmount was advertised TO LET.

TO BE LET, (From the 25th of March next, for such terms as can be agreed upon,) 

The House, Offices and Premises of ROCKMOUNT NOW IN THE OCCUPATION OF EDWARD BARLOW, ESQ, Together with 65 Acres of the LANDS OF TULLABOY. 

THE HOUSE Consists of 2 Sitting Rooms and 3 Bed Rooms, with the other suitable and usual requisites; Kitchen and Pantry, with Servants Apartments, Cellar, etc., etc. New Stables for Four Horses and a capital Coach House, with Potato House, etc., etc. The LANDS are all in prime heart, and it is unnecessary to state they are all of the best fattening quality. In consequence of Mr. Barlow's present state of health. Application to be made to John Duke. Esq., Moylurg, and John L. Hackett, Esq., Ardcarne, Boyle. [Roscommon & Leitrim Gazette - 6 January 1844 ].

In April 1844, Edward Barlow, Esq. Lieutenant Roscommon Militia, died at his residence, Rockmount, near Boyle.




Michael Forde of Estersnow (whose house was attacked in 1831) applied to the voters register with a freehold value of £20 for "a house and land at Eastersnow".  [Roscommon & Leitrim Gazette - 11 June 1831]. He was a member of Boyle Grand Jury up to 1844. The whole townland of Estersnow was split between John and Michael Forde Jr. (presumably his sons).

In 1856, John Ford of Estersnow, a Roman Catholic, was a member of Boyle Grand Jury and the new resident at Rockmount House [GV#2 Tullyboy]. John Forde (1817-1892) and Brigid Padden (1839-1910) of Rockmount baptised 7 children at Croghan from 1864-76, with Michael Ford (1829-1883) featuring twice as a godparent.  

In Griffith's Valuation 1857, John Ford is recorded as having 100 acres at [GV#2 Tullyboy] in addition to the adjoining 66 acres of land at [GV#2 Estersnow]. His bachelor brother, Michael Forde (1829-1883) had a house and 99 acres at [GV#1 Estersnow].  Their neighbour at Tullyboy House was Robert J. Peyton Esq. [GV#1].

In 1892, John Forde of Rockmount died, age 75, of a strangulated hernia. His son, Edward Forde (b. 1866) present at death. In his Will, John Forde of Estersnow, left effects of £754 to his wife, Brigid. 

In 1901 Rockmount House was still the residence of his widow, Brigid Forde who was living on an annuity. Her sons Patrick and Bernard Ford had also remained, helping on the farm. Rockmount was the property of Sarah Harte. Its 9 out-buildings included two stables, a harness room, a cow-house and calf-house, a piggery, and a fowl-house.  Brigid Forde died of old age in 1910 with her eldest son Michael Forde (b.1864) present at death. Michael, John and Joseph Forde were unmarried and residing at Rockmount at this time. 

In the 1911 Census, Rockmount House (the property of Sarah Harte) was recorded as a second-class house with 7 rooms occupied by 3 Forde brothers. Its out-buildings had reduced to two stables, a cow-house and turf-house. 

In 1923, Rockmount House was preparing for sale. It then became the residence of C.B. Monson. 

SALE AUCTION of VALUABLE FURNITURE MODERN AND ANTIQUE, at ROCKMOUNT, BOYLE, On Thursday, 17th May, 1923, Commencing at 11.30 o'clock sharp. For full list apply to PARNELL BEALIN, Auctioneer, Boyle. [Sligo Champion]


Rockmount house and farm are still extant today. Sadly, its standing stone (for which the house was named) had disappeared before the close of the 19th century. 





Ordnance Survey House Books 1839 [Barlow] Ireland VIEW SOURCE
Griffith's Valuation: Rockmount [Tullyboy #2] Ireland VIEW SOURCE
1901 Census: Brigid Forde of Rockmount Ireland VIEW SOURCE
1911 Census: Michael Forde of Rockmount Ireland VIEW SOURCE

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