Doctor Richard Hungerford Townsend (5A02)

Date of Birth: 19 Sep 1845
Date of Death: 30 Jan 1922
Generation: 7th
Residence: Cobh, Cork
Father: Reverend Thomas Uniacke Townsend [5A00]
Mother: Carr, Elizabeth
  1. Denny, Arabella Jane
  2. Fox, Martha Dimmick
    • Doctor Thomas Henry Denny (Pa Willy) [5A10]
    • Commander Richard Herbert Denny [5A11]
    • Canon Henry Denny [5A12]
    • Sophia Elizabeth [5A13]
    • Helen Agnes (Joan) [5A14]
    • Kathleen (Audrey) [5A15]
    • Eileen Blanche [5A16]
See Also: Table VA ; Scrapbook ; Lineage ; Ancestors' Tree ; Descendents' Tree

Notes for Doctor Richard Hungerford Townsend MB LRCSI

Richard was born in Arnestown, Co Wexford.

Married 1st 16 February 1874. Arabella Jane Denny (1) was the daughter of Rev Henry Denny (1a) of Church Hill House,(1b) Co Kerry and Rector of the Union of Ballinahaglish, Clogherbrien and Annagh, Co Kerry. See Burke's Peerage - Denny. Married 2nd 15 November 1911 in Cobh (2). Mrs Martha Dimmick Fox. The service was taken by the Reverend Henry Allen.

Richard attended a school in Crewkerne, Somerset following which he was admitted to Trinity College, Dublin. The TCD Graduation List Volume II records that he qualified BA in Winter 1866 and MB in Summer 1869. Henry FitzJohn Townsend [260] and Thomas Courtenay Townsend [5B02] were undergraduates at Trinity at the same time, whilst Rev Richard Townsend [337] was teaching at the university.

Having qualified as a doctor, Richard spent his whole life practicing medicine in Queenstown (Cobh). He was a visiting surgeon at the General Hospital & Dispensary, Spy Hill, Queenstown and Port Officer of Health. In this latter capacity he 'cleared' the Titanic when she called in at Queenstown on her fateful maiden voyage in 1912.

Francis Guy's City and County Cork Almanac and Directory for 1884 records that he was also Dispensary Doctor and Registrar for Births, Marriages and Deaths in Queenstown East, was a Member of the County and City of Cork Medical and Surgical Society and lived at 13 Westbourne Place, Queenstown. In addition Guy's City and County Cork Almanac and Directory for 1907 shows Richard as the physician for the 'Refuge and Penitentiary for Destitute Females, Sawmill Street, Cork'.

Guy's City and County Cork Almanac and Directory for 1913 shows Richard still practicing medicine at the age of 68.

Busy though he was professionally, Richard was an excellent fisherman and spent much of his time fishing in Killarney. He was also a keen sailor, joined the Royal Cork Yacht Club in 1877 and was still a member in 1905. The club records show that in 1898 he owned the yacht 'Linda' (12 tons) - cutter rigged, 42 feet long, with a beam of 11 feet 8 inches and registered in Colchester. Lloyds Yacht Register 1900 in the RCYC shows "Townshend Capt W. Tower. Myross Wood, Leap, Cork. 'Linda' (12 tons)" so Richard must have sold it to his cousin William Tower Townsend [535].

‘Slater’s Royal National Directory of Ireland, 1894’ records under the heading ‘Munster Parishes - Queenstown. Private Residents’ - “Townsend Richard H. MB 13 Westbourne place.” The other entries for Richard in the Directory show that he was the “Visiting Surgeon” at the General Hospital & Dispensary, Spy hill Queenstown, physician ‘Cork Union. Queenstown, East dispensary district’ and ‘Registrar of Births, Deaths & Marriages - District No. 1 (Eastern), Harbour terrace, Queenstown.’

Richard was living at ‘Ardeevin’, Queenstown in 1876. The April 1901 Irish Census records that, aged 55, he was living at 11 Westbourne Terrace, Queenstown, a substantial 13 roomed house with his wife, their son, Henry Denny Townsend [5A12], their three daughters, his cousin Gertrude Mary Townsend [555] and two domestic staff. The 1911 Irish Census of Ireland shows he was living as a widowewr in the same house with his sister, Maria Devereux [5A08], his daughter, Kathleen Audrey Townsend [5A15], daughter in law, Ethel Mary Townsend [5A10], and three female domestic staff.

A paper written by Richard and entitled a 'Case of triamus, following a lacerated wound of the scalp: erysipelas of the head and face; recovery' can be seen in The Dublin Journal of Medical Science, Vol. LXI, pp. 578-581, June, 1876.

Richard is buried in the old cemetery, Queenstown, alongside his father Thomas Uniacke Townsend [5A00].

This Youtube footage of a street scene would have been very familiar to Richard Cork 1902

Seven members of the family practiced medicine in Cork and Queenstown during the 19th and early part of the 20th centuries. Richard Townsend [517] 1800-1843; Edward Richard Townsend [6C00] 1800-1878; Richard Newman Townsend [530] 1835-1877; Edward Richard Townsend [6C04] 1838-1897; Richard Hungerford Townsend [5A02] 1845-1922; Normnan Ian Townsend [6C18] 1869-1921 and Thomas Henry Denny Townsend [5A10] 1876-1952. In addition 'Townsends' from another family practiced at roughly the same time; notably Dr William C Townsend and Dr Horace R Townsend.

(1) Arabella was born in 1844 and died on 13 June 1908. Page 554 of The Calendar of Wills and Administration 1858-1922 in the National Archives of Ireland records that Administration of the estate of "Arabella Jane Townsend late of Westbourne Terrace Queenstown County Cork", who died on 13 June 1908 at Gillingham Kent, was granted at Cork on 2 September 1908 to "Richard Hungerford Townsend Bachelor of Medicine the Husband". Effects £1,309 16s 6d..

(1a) The entry for Denny in the University of Galway Landed Estates Database records "Smith indicates that the first Sir Edward Denny was granted over 6000 acres in county Kerry after the Desmond Rebellion. Sir Arthur Denny was granted an estate in 1666 following the Acts of Settlement. At the time of Griffith’s Valuation Sir Edward Denny owned several townlands in the parish of Annagh, barony of Corkaguiny, parish of Killorglin, barony of Iveragh and the parishes of Ardfert, Clogherbrien, Ratass and Tralee, barony of Trughanacmy. Collingwood Denny leased several townlands in the portion of Annagh parish in the barony of Trughanacmy. Rev. Robert Denny was the principal lessor in the parish of Killorglin, barony of Magunihy, at the time of Griffith’s Valuation. In 1864, lands at Ballymacgegoge, barony of Trughanacmy, leased by Richard Jeffcott from the Denny estate, were offered for sale in the Landed Estates Court. In 1867, property in Iveragh barony which had been leased by Rev. Robert Day Denny to Michael Lynch was offered for sale in the Landed Estates Court. In the 1870s the Denny estate in county Kerry amounted to over 21,000 acres. A junior branch of this family held land in the parish of Colman, barony of Middlethird, county Tipperary and in counties Fermanagh and Monaghan. Anthony Denny married Sarah Jane daughter of the Reverend G.P. Lockwood and their son was the Reverend Edward Denny (born 1853) of Moorestown, county Tipperary. In the 1870s the trustees of the late Anthony Denny held 1,988 acres in county Tipperary and estates in counties Fermanagh and Monaghan."

(1b) The entry for Church Hill House in the University of Galway Landed Estates Database records "At the time of Griffith's Valuation, Rev. Henry Denny was leasing Church Hill from Sir Edward Denny when it was valued at £27. According to Bary the house was in the hands of the Denny family for much of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries until it passed to the Neligans, possibly in the 1880s. In 1906 it was owned by William Neligan and valued at £27. It is still extant and occupied."

(2) The wedding was announced in the New York Times of 25 November 1911. (Scroll down to 'Townsend-Fox Wedding'.) It was also published in 'Fox Family News' Vol 1 No 1 of January 1912 which records "they have been travelling in England but will reside at No13 Westbourne Place, Queenstown."