Edward Mansel (Splendid Ned) Townsend (401)

Date of Birth: bap 23 Jul 1727
Date of Death: ca 1806
Generation: 4th
Residence: Whitehall (1), Co Cork
Father: Samuel Townsend [400]
Mother: Mansel, Dorothea
  1. Becher, Helena
  2. Baldwin, Anna
    • Dorothea [407]
    • Samuel [405]
    • Edward Mansel [406]
    • Anna [408]
See Also: Table IV ; Scrapbook ; Lineage ; Ancestors' Tree ; Descendents' Tree

Notes for Edward Mansel Townsend (Splendid Ned)

Alumni Trinity College Dublin from Co Cork and Kerry 1593-1860 in Dr Casey's Collection records that Edward was taught by Mr Spiller before he entered Trinity College, Dublin, on 3 April 1745 aged 17 as a pensioner who paid a fixed sum annually for his studies. Mr Spiller also tutored Edward's cousin, Richard Townsend [301], before he entered the University in 1742. http://irishdeedsindex.net/mem.phpMarried 1st 1752, Helena Becher (2) was the only daughter of John Becher (2a) of Creagh,(2b) Skibbereen, by his wife Mary Townsend [121]. See 1976 Edn Burke's Irish Family Records - Becher. See also ‘A Guide to Irish Houses’ by M. Bence-Jones, London, 1988 – “SKIBBEREEN cor Creagh. Becher 1820+”. Married 2nd 2 October 1762. Anna Baldwin was the only daughter of Henry Baldwin of Mount Pleasant,(2c) Bandon, Co Cork. Anna's niece, Mercy married Edward's son, Samuel Townsend [405]. See 1958 Edn Burke's Irish Family Records - Baldwin. See also ‘A Guide to Irish Houses’ by M. Bence-Jones, London, 1988 – “BANDON cor Curravordy. Baldwin 1740+. Seat of the Baldwins. Derelict. Later called Mount Pleasant.”

According to his great grandson, Samuel Nugent Townsend [432], Edward was commissioned on 15 October 1756 and appointed Adjutant of the County Cork Militia Dragoons, commanded by Colonel Richard Townsend [213] (3). These were troubled times in Co Cork and Samuel records that "he had plenty of work of a non agricultural nature to attend to, as anyone reading the Irish history of that day can easily enough see."

Elected a Freeman of Youghal on 28 July 1760 along with his kinsmen Richard Townsend [213], John Townsend [214], Richard Townsend [301], and Philip Townsend [500], Edward was admitted a Freeman of the City of Cork on 9 August 1782 (4). The Council Book of the Corporation of the City of Cork 1690-1800 by Richard Caulfield records on page 975 “9 August 1782. That ….. Edward Mansel Townsend Esq …..be admitted freemen at large”.

The list of Freemen and Freeholders who voted in the election of 13 August 1783 for two members to sit in Parliament for the City of Cork shows that Edward and Cornelius Townsend [139] voted for Augustus Warren and John Bagwell; Richard Boyle Townsend [219], Richard Townsend [213] (or possibly [6A00]) and Rev Horatio Townsend [5D00] all voted for John Hely Hutchinson and John Bagwell. John Hely Hutchinson and Richard Longfield were duly elected.

Forced to give up hunting in his later years, Edward became a great agriculturalist and horse breeder. In his book 'Statistical Survey of the County of Cork' (3) Horatio Townsend [5D00] paints a slightly confusing picture. Discussing horticulture on page 640 he wrote - "Samuel Townsend Esq. of Whitehall is greatly proficient in this style of gardening. When hounds became a subject of heavy taxation, he wisely exchanged the pleasures of the chase for those of the garden. This he superintends himself with care as well as con amore, and for, I believe, a smaller expense than that of dogs, hunters, and their appendages, finds a constant source of very substantial gratification. His grapes in particular exceed any I have seen both in size and flavour." There is clearly confusion here in Horatio's writing. Edward's son, Samuel Townsend [405], was not interested in horticulture and Horatio appears to have ascribed Edward's work to him. It is easy to see how this confusion arose for Edward assigned Whitehall and all his property to Samuel [405] in 1794 (the year of Samuel's marriage) but reserved for himself a life annuity and the right to live at Whitehall.

“Edward Mansel Townsend of Whitehall Esq” is shown as a subscriber to the book ‘The State of The Protestants of Ireland under the late King James’s Government' by William King, Lord Archbishop of Dublin and published by Phineas Bagnell, Cork, in 1768. “In which their carriage towards him is justified, and the absolute necessity of their endeavouring to be freed from his government, and submitting to their present Majesties is demonstrated.” Other members of the family who subscribed to this book include Richard Townsend [213], John Townsend [214] or [303], Philip Townsend [304], Captain Thomas Townsend [502], Rev Horatio Townsend [600] Rev Edward Synge Townsend [601] and Richard Townsend [6A00].

The Registry of Deeds Index Project Ireland contains two memorials that refer to Edward. Memorial 144451 dated 26 October 1762 concerns the entitlement of Margaret Bowen, Grace Bowen and Sarah Bowen to £200 each from the estate of John Bowen 'including lands of Killbraker and Ahauren, Co Cork'. Edward's wife, Anna, and cousin John Townsend [303] are also shown as Party 3 in the deed. Memorial 389356 dated 2 December 1805 records that Edward was a trustee of the marriage settlement of Walter Baldwin and Margaret Hutchinson.

Edward was godfather to William Townsend [504] and all his children, except Dorothea, were by his second wife, Anna.

An entry in the Church of Ireland Parish Records of Ross Cathedral 1690–1823 records on page 34 under the heading 'Christenings' - "1763 7br 11th Robert son of Mr Edward Jones of Droumbeg received into the Congregation. Mr Edward Townsend, Mr Thomas Hungerford, Mrs Mary Sealy and Mrs Baldwin sponsors." This presumably refers to Edward rather than Edward Townsend [202] who would have been 78 in 1763. Drombeg, 1.5 miles east of Glandore, is one of the most visited megalithic sites in Ireland.

'The Post Chaise Companion or Traveller's Directory through Ireland 3rd Edition 1804' page 334 records "Half a mile beyond Newcourt, on the R. is Cree (Creagh), the seat of John Becher, Esq." And further on page 495 - "Four miles and a half from Kilmory (Kilmurry), on the L. is Curravordrie, the seat of Walter Baldwin Esq."

In his autobiography (5) Edward Mansel Townshend [630] describes Whitehall as he saw it when he visited in 1882. “Whitehall, is a delightfully romantic old House, looking out to Cape Clear, from a Cove of Roaring Water Bay, amid ‘Carbery and its Hundred Isles’, The rooms are almost palatial in size, all of them 15 ft., high, on the ground floor, and the Drawing Room and Dining Room, each 25 ft., long, by about 18 ft., wide, preceded by an Ante room, about 15 ft. square and as high."

' Cork and Ross Wills 1548-1800' records that the will of 'Anne Townesend' was proved in Cork in 1778. Does this refer to Edward's second wife, Anna?

(1) The entry for Whitehall in the National University of Ireland (NUI) Galway https://landedestates.ie/property/2600Landed Estates Database records "Edward Townsend held this property in fee at the time of Griffith's Valuation, when it was valued at £22. Lewis noted it as the residence of S. Townsend in 1837. In 1906 it was owned by the representatives of Samuel R. Townsend and valued at £21. Bence-Jones indicates that it later became the property of the Alleyne family." Horatio Townsend [5D00] describes Whitehall on page 342 of his book 'Statistical Survey of the County of Cork' - "Whitehall, the seat of Samuel Townsend, Esq. stands on the east side of Rincolisky, or Roaringwater Bay. It enjoys every advantage of land and water, but from the nature of its situation is unfavourably circumstanced for the growth of trees. The upper part of the ground commands one of the grandest prospects to be found any where, an immense expanse of water extending from Cape Clear on one side to the Mizen-head upon the other. The depth of this great bay is proportioned to its breadth, its shores are diversified by many jutting points and headlands, on several of which are ruined castles, and its ample bosom is inlaid with a great number of verdant islands, of different sizes and shapes. The cape forms a fine termination to the land view on the left, and the rocky summit of Mountgabriel appears to great advantage in the back ground on the right. Some of the islands are large, and contain a great many inhabitants; others small, and used only for summer feeding, are remarkable for the richness of their pasture. Exclusive of these considerations, they are extremely useful in breaking the force of the sea, and forming many secure stations for vessels." The property was sold out of the family in the early 20th century by Piers Townsend Hughes-Townsend son of Charlotte Frances Townsend [422].

(2) Helena was born ante 1739 and died ante 1772. The Preston Collection IE CCCA/U195 in Cork City and County Archives has an entry in section 'D: Marriage Settlements, 1758 – 1873' - "21 Feb. 1772. Acknowledgement of Edward Maunsell Townsend, [White Hall], Co. Cork, by Bishop Gemmett Browne of Cork and Ross, as administrator of the goods, credits and chattels of his deceased wife, Helena Townsend. Witnessed by James Woodroffe."

(2a) The entry for Becher in the University of Galway Landed Estates Database records "Burke's ''Irish Family Records'' and Smith both indicate that the Beechers were originally a Kent family. Fane Becher was granted over 12,000 acres in county Cork during the reign of Elizabeth I. Henry Beecher was granted land in West Carbery in 1669 and is recorded as the purchaser of land from Lord Kingston and Sir William Petty. In 1778 Mary daughter of John Townshend Becher of Creagh and Annisgrove, county Cork, married William Wrixon of Cecilstown, county Cork. She succeeded to the estates of her brother Henry Becher of Creagh. Their eldest son William Wrixon of Ballygiblin assumed the name of Becher and was made a baronet in 1831. He married an actress Miss O'Neill and had a number of children. Griffith's Valuation records Sir William Wrixon Beecher holding an estate in the parishes of Castlemagner, Clonfert, Kilmeen, Knocktemple and Subulter, barony of Duhallow, county Cork. Sir Henry Becher, who succeeded his father in 1850, was among the principal lessors in the parishes of Castlehaven, Aghadown, Creagh and Tullagh in the barony of West Carbery, county Cork. Sir William Becher also held land in the parish of Kilvellane, barony of Owney and Arra, county Tipperary. The estate of Sir Henry Wrixon Becher of Ballygiblin amounted to 18,933 acres in county Cork and 358 acres in county Tipperary in the 1870s. Michael A Becher held townlands in the parish of Kilmeen, barony of East Carbery and in the 1870s Michael R. A. Becher of Ballyduvane, Clonakilty owned over 2,000 acres in county Cork. In 1854 lands and mining interests, the property of Edward Baldwin Becher, were offered for sale in the Encumbered Estates Court, and includes a report on the mines of Coolaghmore and Coolaghbeg. In the 1870s the Becher estate in Cork (a combination of the Wrixon and Becher estates) amounted to over 18,000 acres while he also held lands in Tipperary. The estate of the representatives of the late John Beecher amounted to over 1600 acres in the 1870s. At the time of Griffith's Valuation, Edward and George Beecher were among the principal lessors in the parish of Kilcoe while Richard Beecher was the lessor of townlands in the parish of Skull. Eliza Beecher held several townlands in the parish of Kilgarriff, barony of Ibane & Barryroe, at the same time. In October 1851, 17,000 acres, the estate of Richard H. Hedges Beecher, was offered for sale in the Encumbered Estates Court. Lot 1 included the owner's house at Hollybrook. A sale of the remaining lots took place in February 1852 and included the house at Lakelands, leased to Richard O'Donovan Beecher. In April 1858, the house and demesne at Hollybrook were again offered for sale. An extensive family history of both the Becher/Beecher and Wrixon families is given by Grove White and published in the ''Journal of the Cork Historical and Archaeological Society'' (1907) under Ballygiblin. The spelling Becher and Beecher are used almost interchangably thoughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries."

(2b) The entry for Creagh House in the University of Galway Landed Estates Database records "Wilson, writing in 1786, refers to Cree as the seat of John Becher. At the time of Griffith's Valuation, Sir H. Becher was in possession of Creagh House, then valued at £25. In 1894 and 1906 it was owned by Sir John W. Becher and valued at £30 15s. It is still extant and the well-known gardens are sometimes open to the public. "

(2c) The entry for Baldwin Mount Pleasant (Curravordy) in the University of Galway Landed Estates Database records "Henry Baldwin was among the principal lessors in the parish of Templemartin, barony of Kinalmeaky, county Cork, at the time of Griffith's Valuation. The representatives of William Baldwin held townlands in the parish of Kinneigh, barony of East Carbery at that time. In October 1857, lands in the barony of Kinalmeaky, originally part of the estate of Henry Baldwin, were offered for sale in the Encumbered Estates Court. In June 1862, lands at Lisnagat, barony of Kinalmeaky,owned by Herny McCarthy, were offered for sale in the Landed Estates Court. The original lease was from the Baldwin estate. In the 1870s, the representatives of James Baldwin of Mount Pleasant, owned over 3000 acres in the county. The representatives of Samuel Baldwin held over 300 acres."

(3) To date (2007) no record has been found of this unit.

(4) 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.

(5) 'A Protestant Auto-Biography by the Rev E Mansel Townshend'.

For other Becher connections see Horatio Townsend [104], Mary Townsend [121], Richard Townsend [201], Barbara Townsend [306], Samuel Townsend [412] and Anne Townsend [417].

For other Baldwin connections see Katherine Townsend [245], Barbara Townsend [312], Samuel Townsend [405].

Much of the information on the Becher Family has been provided by Jenny Stiles from Australia who is a descendant of John Becher (b. 6 Apr 1700 d. 1738) of Creagh and Mary Townsend [121] through their son Michael (b. ca 1735 d. Aug 1778).

'An Officer of the Long Parliament' Ch X p.233-34 refers.