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Griffith's Revision Books & Maps RURAL EXAMPLE Townland of Forttown Parish of Ballymoney Co. Antrim. W. Macafee October 2013. Using the townland of Forttown , Ballymoney as an exemplar, this PowerPoint presentation should give you some guidance on how to -

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Griffith's Revision Books & Maps

RURAL EXAMPLE

Townland of Forttown

Parish of Ballymoney

Co. Antrim

W. MacafeeOctober 2013


Using the townland of Forttown, Ballymoney as an exemplar, this PowerPoint presentation should give you some guidance on how to -

access the Revision Books online;

"read" and interpret the pages within the Revision Books;

match the information in the books to the six inch and large scale valuation maps;

match the house numbers and names in the Revision Books with the house numbers and names in 1901 and 1911 Census Returns;

There is a separate presentation for urban areas, where Church Street in Coleraine is used as an exemplar.


Before going near the Revision Books I would do the following - Consult the printed Griffith’s Valuation for the Poor Law Union of Ballymoney and look at the Index pages. The relevant page containing Forttown is shown below. It shows that, within Ballymoney PLU, the Townland of Forttown was part of the Parish of Ballymoney, Barony of Dunluce Upper, and was also part of Seacon Electoral Division [DED].This information is sufficient for working with the Revision Books until 1921 when Forttown became part of the new DED of Kirkmoyle. Note that this index page also gives the relevant Six Inch Sheet numbers for each townland.


Before looking at the Revision Books I usually have a look at the Printed Griffith’s Valuation c.1860 [see the Forttown page below [pages 130 & 131] in the Union of Ballymoney Book dated 16th January 1861. Incidentally the townland was actually valued in September 1859 [VAL/2/B/1/35A]. I would also look at the accompanying Valuation Map – see next slide.


Strictly speaking the map that matches the Printed Valuation is VAL/2/A/1/12B [c.1859] held in PRONI – see copy of part of that map below. Saying that this map is difficult to read is something of an understatement. Nowadays I use the valuation maps at the askaboutireland website – see next slide. However, using a magnifying glass I always try to match this map with the askaboutireland.ie map.


Click here is VAL/2/A/1/12B [c.1859] held in PRONI – see copy of part of that map below. Saying that this map is difficult to read is something of an understatement. Nowadays I use the valuation maps at the askaboutireland website – see next slide. However, using a magnifying glass I always try to match this map with the askaboutireland.ie map. to go to the askaboutireland.ie website. Below are some screenshots showing you what to do when you reach the site.

When you reach the site the default search is a Family Name Search – Click on the Place Name Search button to switch to a placename search – then type in Fort-Town in the Mandatory Box and choose Antrim from the Optional Region Box. Note that I was only able to get Forttown when I typed in Fort-Town as it appears in the Printed Griffith’s page. When searching for a townland, sometimes, you will have to try different spellings. If all else fails, type in an adjacent townland. A word of warning - the numbering and lettering on askmap aboutireland.ie maps do not always match in the numbering and lettering in the Valuation Books.


The map that you see at the askaboutireland website will be something like the one below.

c.1860 Valuation Map of the Townland of Forttown, Parish of Ballymoney[This map is based on the PRONI: VAL/2/A/1/12B [c.1859] & VAL/12/D/1/12C [c.1895]


Now we are ready to begin our search of the Griffith’s Revision Books that contain the townland of Forttown.

Click on the Search Valuation Revision Books link to start your search.

Note that this page also contains an introduction to the Revision Books plus links to Further Information. Certainly worth reading.


This Search Box will then appear on your screen. Revision Books that contain the townland of Forttown.

If you want a townland in the countryside, in most cases, typing in the name of the townland in the placename box is often sufficient.

If you are having difficulty with the spelling of a townland or street have a look at the Search hints and tips on the PRONI website. My tip - it is well worth looking at the exact spelling of “your” townland in the Printed Griffith’s Book – as you will see later.

You can narrow the search by selecting the County and the Parish in which your townland is situated. Certainly in the case of streets in a town you will usually need to select at least the County and the Parish – particularly if it is a street name like Church Street – see Urban Example. With villages - the name of the village usually produces a positive result.

If all else fails and you are familiar with DEDs, you can type in the PRONI reference e.g. VAL/12/B/4/23A. The books in PRONI are actually organised by PLU and DED.

Remember if you want adjacent townlands they will be in the same book, providing they are in the same DED.

Finally click on Search. See example of a search on the next slide.


Here is an example. I have typed in Fort Town which is in the Parish of Ballymoney. Incidentally, I was born in this townland. When I first typed in Fort Town I typed in Forttown - the modern spelling - and did not select a County or a Parish. I got a different result - the townland of Forttown in the Parish of Urney in Co. Tyrone. I never knew it existed. Even if I had included the County & Parish it would still have been a nil result. I remembered that the townland was often spelt Fort Town in earlier documents so I typed it in and also selected Co. Antrim and the Parish of Ballymoney as shown in the screenshot below. The result of the search is shown in the next slide.

Before you move on to the next slide – click here - to go to the PRONI website and do this search. You will then be able to “follow” me online as you read the rest of the slides in this presentation.


The results of the Fort town search are shown in the screenshot below. Note the spelling of Fort Town with space between the two parts of the townland name. The last column on the right contains the PRONI Refs. for the books that cover the period 1864 to 1929. You can choose whichever book you want and simply click on the link. Note that the final book refers to Kirkmoyle DED which is not online yet - hence it appears in black type. The other books refer to Seacon DED. If you want the Kirkmoyle Book you will have to visit PRONI.

I then clicked on Book VAL/12/B/4/23C covering the period 1867-1885 and the next screenshot shows the result. You do the same.


This screenshot shows the Image Results page. This is where you “get at” the books and the pages. Note that you can use the Search Results button and the Search Page button to return to these pages.

Click on the Index Image button to find the first page number of Forttown in this particular book.

You can click on any of these links to access related books.

When you click on one of these links the book will open in a separate window or tab.

Note that the Related Books pages do not contain this list of links. You will have to come back to this page each time that you want to see another Book.


If you click on View you will get a much larger picture of the Index page that you are viewing and “one that stays still”.

When you are finished – click on the Back Button in your browser to return to this page.

*

The Index page shows that the pages covering Fort Town begin on page 7. I have added a * to show its position on the index page. Use the Next Image button to navigate to page 7. Note that if you had to go, for example, to page 76 you would use the Forward Ten Images button to speed up the process.

See page 7 in the next slide.


As you can see page 7 is fairly uneventful – the only event recorded - a change in the immediate lessor [the landlord] from John Cromie to Lord Robert Montague in 1876. There were no changes in the tenant farmers. You might have had difficulty in reading this change on the page below. A larger page can be had if you click on View. You should still be online so click on View. See explanation of what is on this page in next slide.


The only change is in plot No. 1 where the tenant farmer, James Boyd, was renting a house & office [outbuilding] valued at £3 & 10 shillings [£3.50, modern money] plus 75 acres and 1rood of land valued at £56 & 10 shillings [£56.50 modern money]. The landlord or immediate lessor was John Cromie who lived in Cromore House near Portstewart. Here you can see John Cromie’s name clearly stroked out in purple and the name Lord Robert Montague written above it, also in purple. In the last column of the page there is a 76 written in the same colour. This denotes the date when the valuer recorded this change. I know that John Cromie died on the 17th of January 1875 and Lord Montague was his son-in-law. Clearly the valuer was visiting a year or so after Cromie’s death.


This is a screenshot of page 9 for Fort Town. You should still be online so you will have a clearer view of this page. Click on View to see a larger image. Alternatively, I would save this page as a jpg and any other pages in a sequence that I am using – then open them in a Picture Viewer. I have put a copy of the jpg that I saved in the next slide. I tend to right click to save the jpg. I find it gives me more control over how I save the image and where I put it on my hard disk.


This is a copy of the jpg file that I saved. Note that there are changes recorded for the years – 68, 69, 73, 76 and 79. In 1868 there are Reps. for Robert Forsythe, both as a tenant of John Cromie and the immediate lessor of a house to Robert Fullerton. In 1869 William B. Forsythe took over Robert Forsythe’s properties. In 1876 Lord Montague became his landlord. In Lot 5 in 1873 Samuel Pinkerton must have been dead [hence the Reps.]. By 1875 the property was taken over by Sheriff & John Pinkerton and the following year they had a new landlord. All of this is difficult to read off this slide but you should be looking at it online.


At this point, since you are online, you should be able to follow the “story” of what happened on plots 4 and 5 in Book VAL/12/B/4/23D [1885-1896] and Book VAL/12B/4/23E [1897-1911]. This will take you to the 1901 and 191 Census Returns where you should be able to match the names and numbers in the Valuation Books with those in the Census Returns.

No changes are recorded in Book 23D but in Book 23E covering the years 1897 to 1911 there are considerable changes.

The next two slides showing pages 9 & 10 from Book 23E record changes in No. 4 to William B. Forsythe’s cottier houses. c.1901 Samuel Moore and Patrick Kelly were replaced by Charles McFall and James Parkhill. House 4d is vacant by 1909 with Parkhill gone.

During the visit of the valuer in 1907 the following changes were recorded in No. 5

There appears to be a new occupant, Samuel McLean replacing Sheriff & John Pinkerton. Also No. 5 is divided into 5A & 5B. 5B is a small plot of land of just over half an acre [2 roods and 10 perches]. Note that this amount is deducted from 5 to create 5A and the valuation amended. An RDC [Rural District Council] labourer’s cottage is built on 5B occupied by a new arrival to the townland, William McAfee.

The two cottier houses on 5A were unoccupied by 1907 and both were “down” by 1910.

Two further RDC cottages were built in the townland c.1911 and were occupied by William Lee and Samuel Semple new arrivals to the townland.

Compare this information with the later slides showing the 1901 & 1911 Census Returns.


VAL/12/B/4/23/E [1897-1911] follow the “story” of what happened on plots 4 and 5 in Book VAL/12/B/4/23D [1885-1896] and Book VAL/12B/4/23E [1897-1911]. This will take you to the 1901 and 191 Census Returns where you should be able to match the names and numbers in the Valuation Books with those in the Census Returns.

9


VAL/12/B/4/23/E [1897-1911] follow the “story” of what happened on plots 4 and 5 in Book VAL/12/B/4/23D [1885-1896] and Book VAL/12B/4/23E [1897-1911]. This will take you to the 1901 and 191 Census Returns where you should be able to match the names and numbers in the Valuation Books with those in the Census Returns.


The Form B1 [1901 Census] shows the houses in the townland at that time plus the heads of households and “owners” of the land on which each house was located. The red numbers are the numbers from the Griffith’s Revision Books. Note that all of the cottier houses are on the land of the farmers.

5c

5b

5a

4a

4d

1a

2C

1b

1e


This page was vital in determining the location houses on the 1901 Form B1 on the land of John Boyd.

VAL/12/B/4/23E [1897-1911]


The Form A [1901 Census] shows the family of Sheriff Pinkerton . Here are we can see the Sheriff and John Pinkerton listed in the Griffith’s Revision Books from 1873. Clearly they are brothers. It appears that John never married. Jeannie, Sheriff’s daughter, will marry Samuel McLean later in the year. The McLean family is shown in the 1911 Census below.


The Form B1 [1911 Census] shows the houses in the townland at that time plus the heads of households and “owners” of the land on which each house was located. The red numbers are the numbers from the Griffith’s Revision Books. Notice the difference between 1901 and 1911 as far as cottier houses are concerned. In particular the tenats of these houses are no longer renting from farmers. These three houses will not be shown in the earlier Valuation Mpa. The next slide shows their location in a later map.

7a

7b

5B

5A

4a

1a

2C

1c


At the moment I do not have any of the later Valuation Maps to hand. Instead I have used the map shown below - a copy of the OS map of Forttown dated 1934. On it I have marked the three RDC cottages that were built in the early twentieth century.

7a

7b

5B


Particularly for later revisions the askaboutireland.ie maps can be misleading. Often towards the end of the nineteenth century, due to consolidation of farms and the fact that an increasing number of cottier houses were “down” or “in ruins”, properties were often renumbered and/or relettered – and in this townland new RDC cottages were built at the beginning of the twentieth century.

This new numbering, etc. only appear in the later revised maps. Unfortunately these are only available in PRONI. You can use the PRONI eCatalogue to identify these maps but you will have to pay a visit to PRONI to see them.

The next slide shows the results of an eCatalogue search for the VAL/12/D/1/12* Valuation Maps that cover Forttown for the years 1859 to 1935. I am interested in the maps up c.1911.

Note that the 1 in this PRONI Ref. is vital. It denotes the County - Antrim, 2 = Co. Armagh, 3 = Co. Down, 4 = Co. Fermanagh, 5 = Co. Londonderry and 6 = Co. Tyrone.

The 12* is the sheet number and the asterisk is vital because it means the search will bring out all of the relevant sheet 12s.


Searching the eCatalogue for VAL/12/D maps for Sheet No. 12 Co. Antrim

Results of the Search

Note that these maps cover townlands within the Poor Law Unions of Ballycastle, Ballymoney and Coleraine. It can be difficult, sometimes, to select the correct map to match the Revision Book with which you are working. I have just been to PRONI and I have looked, carefully, at maps 12A, 12B, 12C, 12D & 12E covering the period 1859 to 1914. Sheet 12A only shows numbering of houses and holdings in parts of two townlands in Coleraine Poor Law Union in the top NW corner of the sheet - see next slide. Sheet 12B only shows some townlands in the Ballycastle Poor Law Union in top NE corner of the sheet. In both maps the townlands in Ballymoney PLU are not valued. Sheet 12 C has all of the townlands in all of the PLUs showing valuation numbers plus the layout of holdings and plots of land. This is probably the map that you can see on the askaboutireland.ie website. Sheet 12D is very similar to 12C. Sheet 12E is a later map [1895-1914] and here you can see the division of holding No. 5 into 5A & 5B plus the new labourer’s cottage in 5B. It also shows the two labourer’s cottages 7a & 7b as well as the stroking out of houses 5b & 5c plus 4b, 4c & 4d.


Searching the eCatalogue for VAL/12/D maps for Sheet No. 12 Co. Antrim

Note that the townlands in Coleraine PLU became part of Ballymoney PLU after the County Council Act of 1898.

You might also be interested in a map showing the boundaries of the Baronies and Parishes on Sheet 12 – see next slide.


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