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The families of NICHOLSON-JACKSON and CLELAND seem to be more than geographically close. There are several connections of either intermarriage and/or property. I suspect I only know the half of it. These letters as well as other documents that I hope to see in the near future should help us to connect more of the dots of the early JACKSON years in Co. Down. A particular curiousity of mine concerns Anne JACKSON (1724-1814) who married a BLACKWOOD and is buried in the Abbey Graveyard at Bangor.See Also: Bangor Abbey as well as The Dufferin Papers at PRONI
Sharon Oddie Brown, August 20, 2010.

 

This transcription is thanks to the kindness of Linda Leonard. NOTE: The 1711 will of James JACKSON may also help to understand the context of these letters. The annotations and any errors are mine.

 

D1071 B/B/10/1  3 x Jackson / Blackwood[1] letters 1735-1739

 

A couple of outline family trees may be helpful. Firstly, these JACKSONs are outlined in the third tree on The Jacksons of Co. Down. These letters helped to corroborate some of the hunches in that tree. Other connections can be followed in the descendants of John BLACKWOOD:

 

Descendants of John Blackwood

                                       

 1   John Blackwood b: 1591 in Scotland  d: 22 May 1663 in of Bangor, Co. Down

..  +Janet Clerke  

........ 2   John Blackwood   d: 1698 in of Ballyleidy, Co. Down

............  +Anna Wauchope  

................... 3   John Blackwood  

.......................  +Ursula Hamilton   d: 12 Sep 1741

............................. 4   Robert Blackwood b: 05 Nov 1694  d: 1774

.................................  +Joyce Leeson  

........................................ 5   John Blackwood b: 1722 in of Ballyleidy,Parish of Bangor, Co. Down  d: 27 Feb 1799 in of Ballyleidy, Parish of Bangor,Co. Down

............................................  +Dorcas Stevenson b: 1726 in of Killyleagh, Co. Down  d: 08 Feb 1808

............................. 4   James Blackwood  

............................. 4   Ursula Blackwood  

................... 3   Isabell Blackwood   d: 12 Oct 1738

.......................  +Alexander Hamilton b: 1648  d: in owned several properties in town and surrounding estate; lived in a manor house near the castle; vested with the patronage of the boroughc. 1790

............................. 4   Anne Hamilton  

.................................  +Hugh Whyte   d: in of Ballyree, Co. Down

........................................ 5   Mary Whyte   d: 29 Oct 1787

............................................  +William Nicholson b: 23 Oct 1699  d: 17 Jun 1740 in of Ballow, Parish of Bangor, Co. Down

.................................................. 6   Hugh Nicholson   d: 1743

.................................................. 6   William Nicholson of Ballow House, Co. Down. b: 1728  d: 05 Apr 1793

......................................................  +Agnes Cleland   d: 11 Jul 1775

.................................................. 6   Robert Donaldson Nicholson   d: 05 Sep 1803

.................................................. 6   Susanna Nicholson b: 1729  d: 14 Nov 1775

......................................................  +Hugh Jackson b: 1716 in of Ballywooley  d: 17 Dec 1800

............................................................. 7   Sarah Jackson b: 1760  d: 30 Jan 1842

.................................................. 6   Margaret Maxwell Nicholson  

......................................................  +Robert Gawen Steele  

............................................................. 7   William Nicholson Steele b: 05 Apr 1772 

.................................................................  +Isabella Hancock  m: 27 Feb 1807

........................................................................ 8   Robert Steele Nicholson b: 22 Jul 1809 

............................................................................  +Jane Nangle b: in of Kildalkey, CO. Meath m: 16 Feb 1841

........................................  *2nd Husband of Mary Whyte:  

............................................  +Patrick Cleland   d: in of Ballymagee

............................. 4   Alexander Hamilton He owned several properties in town and surrounding estate; lived in a manor house near the castle; vested with the patronage of the borough. 1790                   

 

First letter: James Jackson[2] to James Blackwood[3] July 5th 1735

 

Honoured Sir

Last time you was in this Contrey I was not able to wait upon you by reason of the Ague of which I was very bad. I desire you may bring along with you whenever you come to this Contrey my Deeds of Ballywoolly[4] and you shall have under my hand for a declaration of trust with Mr Stevenson’s[5] discharge & I don’t think it unreasonable I should want my Deeds.any longer. And I defigh to pay no Rent to Mr Stevenson untill such time as I get my Deeds. You complain yet he has not satisfyd you for what trouble you were at. He desires you to draw your Bill & he will pay you. I think it very unreasonable that my Deeds should be kept back from me upon his deficiency you also complain to your Brother[6] yet that I had not satisfyd you. I gave you one Moyder in Downpatrick & another in Mr McKartny’s which I think sufficient for what trouble you were at upon my account – Shurely I was always willing to put in your way any money I possibly could which is all from your very humble servant. 

 

                                                                                          James Jackson

Ballywolly

July 5th 1735

 

Addressed to : James Blackwood  Counselor at Law in Stafford Street Dublin

 

 

Second letter: Gilbert Jackson[7] to James Blackwood April 14th 1737

 

Honoured Sir

I did not think you would have left Ballyleedy[8] so soon else I would have given you (?)

Draught sooner. However I suppose it will answer without I beg you’ll doe what you can towards procuring a proper receipt from Mr Stevenson & Mr ?rice[9] for your purchase money and I expect to see you after the Assizes to be informed what Mr Stevenson says in respect to this (?) and of the most proper way to get all things duly settledin respect of said purchase which is all needful

 

from

                                               your very most Humble servant

                                                       Gilbert Jackson

 

Ballywoolly

April 14th 1737

 

On outside of letter : note ; Gilbert Jackson to James Blackwood about Draft.

 

 

Third letter : Gilbert Jackson to James Blackwood October 27th 1739

 

Honoured Sir

Some time ago I sent you a copy of the deeds of Ballywooly and also a copy of the will. I hope you will take care to get my business finished with all possible expedition, as to my stepmother’s[10] contract I expected to have got a copy of it, but she would not give it till she would consult Mr Echlin[11] but I read its two of the most material circumstances I think contained in it, are that she is to have six pounds per annum and that the children by her should be made equal in fortune to the children of my mother me only excepted. Your diligence in these affairs will very much oblige your very Humble Servant

 

                                                                                          Gilbert Jackson

Ballymisca[12]

October 27th 1739

 

 

On outside of letter: to James Blackwood Esq  Counselor at Law ( ?) Mary’s Abby  Dublin[13]

 

 



[1] An assortment of tangential references:

1.      The Hon. Sir James Stevenson Blackwood of Ballyleidy, Co. Down (of the one part); and Catherine Reid, widow, of Birch Hill, Co. Down. Mortgage for £3157 11s 6d. 10 January 1806 D1071/A/H/2/82/12

2.      Documents of title relating to Drummatticonner [Drumnaconagher, parish of Kilmore], including probate copy of will and administration of James Trail of Tolikin [Tullykin], Co. Down, 1663; copy royal grant to Mary and John Trail, [1673]; mortgage by Mary Trail of Killyleagh to Robert Blackwood of Ballyleidy, with bond, release, etc., 1761; lease of Marybrook to Rev. Moses Neilson, 1770; reconveyance by Blackwood and final concord between Alexander Stewart of Newtownards and Rev. Hamilton Trail and wife, 1775; mortgage by Stewart to Samuel Jackson, 1810. [11 items].  D1825/B/1

3.      21 Sep. 1754 Letter from Robert Blackwood, Ballyleidy, to Charles Brett, Bangor.His tenant, Samuel Montgomery's horse has been distrained "for being on Todds Moss" and he asks "that you as Senechall won'd grant to said Samll. Montgomery a repleivin out of yr. court for said horse". He offers to be security for costs and damage.(p.42)   ...

4.      27 Nov. 1755 Letter from A. Blackwood, Bangor, to Mr Justice Ward, Dublin.She writes about collecting the May rents and an overpayment for the last November rent. "Mr Cochran has given me notice that he will leave Ballyvernan Allsts. next ... the houses and farm are both greatly out of repair ... Mr Blackd. of B:leidy has given me notice now that I must pay him wthout delay £400 that my husband owed him ... My husband left a townland to be dispos'd of for the paymt. of his debts, wch. I was advised not to sell untill the leases were expiring ... I have drudg'd near these six years paying intert. and now I am told money is scarce, and lands are falling ... therefore I beg my Lord you will give me yr. advice, and relieve me of Mr Bd. till I get the land sold ..." She has sent "a memorand sign'd by my husband and bror., shewing wt. bonds they join'd in, and wt. was due by each".(p.52) D2092/1/8

5.      14 Oct. 1800 Sir James Blackwood and Mrs Jones (Sir James Blackwood's sister, formerly Mrs Ryder) are again put back. D3030/T/4

6.      Killyleagh borough Sir John Blackwood bt. Has a large property; of presbyterian family, and has generally opposed; a decent, respectable country gentleman; has property of this borough. Is re-elected.Robert Blackwood Esq. Son to Sir J. Blackwood; returned and guided by him, and will be re-elected. Is re-elected. PRONI T3035/1

7.      [c.August 1783]Copy of a Castle list of the Irish house (mentions of JACKSON)

8.      Anne BLACKWOOD: died 30 Jan 1814 aged 90; nee Jackson; buried Bangor Abbey graveyard. NOTE: I would love to learn more! http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~rosdavies/SURNAMES/B/Bl.htm

9.      1726 Margaret BLACKWOOD of Bangor als PATERSON will probate.

10.   1749 James BLACKWOOD of Bangor will probate.

[2] James JACKSON d. 1738. I suspect that he was related to the James JACKSON who wrote the will of February 18, 1711. He died three years after this first letter. His son Hugh married Susannah NICHOLSON. Her 2nd great-grandfather was John BLACKWOOD (d. 1698) who in turn was the grandfather of James BLACKWOOD.

[3] James BLACKWOOD would have been the younger brother of Sir Robert BLACKWOOD, 1st Baronet of Ballyleidy. Co. Down

[4] Ballywooley.

[5] Mr. STEVENSON. It is likely significant that a James STEVENSON was the father of a Dorcus STEVENSON who married John BLACKWOOD and they were related to the NICHOLSONs who married into both the JACKSON and CLELLAND families who were all connected with the lands in question.

[6] Sir Robert BLACKWOOD (1694-1774) was the older brother of James BLACKWOOD.

[7] Gilbert JACKSON was a son of James JACKSON of Ballywooley and brother-in-law of Susanna NICHOLSON who married his brother Hugh JACKSON of Ballywooley. I suspect that Gilbert carried on the trade of tanning that had been in the JACKSON family for at least the previous generation.

[8] Ballyleedy aka Ballyleidy, Parish of Bangor, Co. Down - home of the  BLACKWOOD family.

[9] Mr. PRICE. NOTE: This was transcribed as: Mr ?rice but given the fact that the PRICE family had land dealings in CO. Down with these families such that a subsequent BLACKWOOD family member assumed the PRICE surname, I think this is a worthy hunch.

[10] Elizabeth HUTCHON was the stepmother of Gilbert JACKSON. She was the second wife of his father James JACKSON.

[11] Mr. ECHLIN. There are so many ECHLINs and some in law, so I can’t say which one except that it is likely that he was one of the lot who came from Echlinville.

[12] Ballymisca, Parish of Dundonald, Co. Down. This townland is right beside Ballyreagan, the townland for hundreds of years of other JACKSONs. It is one of the townlands cited in John Spenser Bassett Life of Andrew Jackson 1911 as a townland where relatives of President Andrew JACKSON lived.

[13] Note: there is a Mary Street and an Abbey Street in central Dublin just off O’Connell Street

 

 

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