Captain Henry Townsend (215)

Date of Birth: b ante 1742
Date of Death: dunm Feb 1788
Generation: 4th
Residence: Dunbeacon and Ballintona
Father: Richard Townsend [201]
Mother: Becher, Elizabeth
Spouse: Unmarried
Issue: None
See Also: Table II ; Scrapbook ; Lineage ; Ancestors' Tree ; Descendents' Tree

Notes for Captain Henry Townsend RN

Henry's father died in 1742 when he was an infant and his mother, Elizabeth, died the following year. Under the terms of his father's will, should Elizabeth die before his brother Richard Townsend [213] came of age then his uncles Samuel Townsend [400], Philip Townsend [500] and Horatio Townsend [600] were appointed guardians of all the children. Under the terms of his mother's will Henry inherited the lands of Dunbeacon, Ardra and Ballintona. His eldest brother Richard inherited the entire Castletownshend estate and his elder brother John Townsend [214] inherited the lands of North and South Aghills (Shepperton), Drishane and Farrendagh, East and West Myross and Glannafoyne (near Loch Ine).

Page 285 of The Ancient & Present State of the County and City of Cork published in 1750 records "Towards the bottom of the bay is Dunbeacon, another castle of the Mahonys; it was purchased from Mr Michael Apsley, by Sir Richard Boyle, Dec. 9 1602. Near it is a good house of Mr Driscoll; and it is now the estate of Mr Townsend a minor". This extract is reproduced in Henry's 'Scrapbook'.

Nothing is known about Henry other than the fact that he was in the Royal Navy and what can be extrapolated from his will which is listed in Swanage Wills; which does not show him as a Captain. (Scroll down to his entry.)

Henry drew up his will on 30 December 1785 and thus sometime prior to that he moved to Whitecliff, Isle of Purbeck; it is not known whether he was still serving the the navy at this time. Amongst the provisions of the will there is one in which his brother John Townsend [214] was to receive the rents from his properties in Ireland which were to be held in trust for John's children until they reached the age of 21 at which time they were to pass to the children. In fact Henry's estate in Ireland passed 'in toto' to his nephew Richard Townsend [221].

Henry must have known that he was close to death for he drew up a codicil on 19 February 1788 in which his brother John was charged with ensuring that certain people received their due on his death. Amongst these is 'Mary the housekeeper at Whitecliff' (£20), 'Timothy Chinchen, apothecary' (£20), 'John Smith agent in Ireland' (£50) and 'Robert Atkins of Salisbury Street, Westminster' (£50). He must have died a short time after because his will was proved on 29 February 1788. It it is interesting to note that his 'good friend' William Moody was replaced as executor by Henry's distant cousin James Townsend [311] who was a barrister.

It would appear Henry was a Freeman of the City of Cork. Between 1710 and 1841, when the power of admitting Freemen only by birth or right ceased, a total of thirty three members of the Townsend family were admitted as Freemen.