Scotch-Irish-L Archives

Archiver > Scotch-Irish > 2000-05 > 0957279409

From: Linda Merle <>
Subject: Re: Northern Ireland Baptists?
Date: Tue, 02 May 2000 07:56:49 -0700
In-Reply-To: <018c01bfb3e1$37d9d720$36db56d1@pavilion>

Hi Bonnie, Falley "Irish and Scotch-Irish Ancestral Research" has a whole
chapter on them, though they must share with the Congregationalists. That's
because, according to her, both arrived en masse at about the same time.
There is little mention of them in records before 1649. The Baptists and
Congregationalists largely originated in England (and beyond), not Ulster. So
you don't find them in numbers that are significant. They arrived in strength
in Cromwell's army and then ran Ireland throughout the Protectorate. These folk
were among the extremists of the time (Ranters, Quakers, Muggletonians,
and others being REALLY out there), and to stabilize politics in England,
Cromwell liked to ship them off to Ireland, apparently hoping the Irish would
eliminate a few for him or at least keep them out of his hair. Just what poor
Ireland needed -- more antipapist Protestants in charge, running things.
After the Restoration things changed -- the high church Anglicans were back
in charge, and a general purging of the Cromwellians occured.

The soldiers who were granted lands in return for their service attended the
local parish church. In Cromwell's day, that church tended to be Congregational
or Baptism in leanings -- in the days of Restoration it was high
church. In the
meantime, soldiers without women....well....they found wives among the Irish
and most of their descendents consider themselves Gaelic Irish and are
Catholics. Many a fine Irishman is descended from a Cromwellian soldier. After
the Restoration these early Baptists did not survive as a separate church.
Their records are in the Church of Ireland records.

Falley says if the ancestor manifests in the colonies before 1655 or soon
after, most likely they were soldiers in Cromwell's army in Ireland. Many of
these sold their land to their officers, who wanted large estates, and
emigrated to the colonies. She says those who left later in the century were
the sons and grandsons of the first proprietors who had been deprived of
some of their lands as well as most of their religious freedom (as Baptists
and Congregationalists) by the Restoration. By the 1660's they were dispersed.

Then a second wave arrived in the 18th century -- converts. Some Scots
Presbyterian ministers converted to Baptist -- so ethnic origin is no guide to

Long chapter with lots of mention of records.

Each of the groups you mentioned has its own history -- and usually a chapter
in Falley. It is also a good book to lookup surnames in. She mentions some
folk in a "History of County Down" by Alexander Knox. William HAWKINS
is one of the fellows who received a grant. He was an Alderman of London.
His descendents include a Robert HAWKINS, who assumed the name of
Robert Hawkins-Magill. His daughter Theodosia married Sir John MEADE,
who was created Earl of Clanwilliam in 1776. A list of Cromwellians who
settled in the area of Nenagh in Tipperary is included.

She tells us that the expulsion of the Baptists and Independents from power
was not as immediate as in England. However in 1661 the government broke
up meetings of Papists, Presbyterians, Independents, Baptisms, and Quakers
and fined them for non attendence of the Established Church. Non conformist
ministers -- Presbyterians and Catholics -- were imprisoned for conducting
services and this continued till 1689 and the Act of Toleration. After that
Protestant dissenters were not persecuted but they were subject to civil
and legal disabilities: Penal Laws, Test Act, etc.

Can any one expand on Falley? Her book was written in the 1960's. It is
still the "definitive source" and so it's in your local library.

>I'm not sure when the Baptists arrived in 1649 that they did much kissing
of the shores. That was a good one! I almost fell off my chair at the mental
picture. Nope, they arrived to clean up Ireland's act and extract revenge,
but apparently in the long run, Ireland won and embracing them, gave their
descendents a long kiss.

Linda Merle

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