Rynn in the 1700s
The arrival of the Clements family
The Clements family in Ireland has its origins in the Cromwellian campaigns in the mid-1600s, when Daniel Clements was granted lands in County Cavan.
The association with Lough Rynn began in 1750, when Nathaniel Clements acquired about 10,000 acres in the Mohill area, though no Clements settled on the estate until 1832.
The Clements family's association with Lough Rynn began in 1749, when Nathaniel Clements bought about 10,000 acres in the Mohill area from Francis Seymour Conway, Lord Conway, 1st Marquess of Hertford and at the time, the Viceroy or Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.
The Clements family had lived in Cavan since the mid-1600s when Daniel Clements, a junior ranking officer in Cromwell's army, was granted lands near Cootehill during the Plantation. The lands had been confiscated from the ruling O'Reilly Clann, and were given to Clements in lieu of back-pay. Daniel went on to become High Sheriff of Cavan in 1674 and Justice of the Peace in 1675.
When James II, the Catholic King of England, arrived in Ireland, Daniel's son Robert was accused of treason and stripped of his lands. He fled back to England but was given back his lands after the accession of William III. He returned to Ireland as early as 1691, just a year after William defeated James at the Battle of the Boyne. On regaining his land, Robert immediately re-established himself in political and economic society. He held the positions of High Sheriff of Cavan and in 1711 was one of the original trustees of the Linen Manufacturers of Ireland. He was Member of Parliament for Newry between 1715 and 1722. He was also Teller of the Irish Exchequer. This latter position helped him to establish close links with the government and society leaders of the day. As significantly, it enabled him to demonstrate a strong financial acumen that he would pass down to his descendants.
Clements was clearly known to Jonathan Swift, author and Dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin. In 1712, Swift wrote that Lord Anglesea, the Vice-Treasurer, thanked Swift for recommending Clements to him, saying he was “twenty thousand pounds the better for knowing Clements”. No wonder Robert Clements was, according to Swift “mightily in Lord Anglesea's favour”. Robert married well: his wife, Elizabeth Sandford of Maynooth extended the couple's holdings to include the Killadoon estates in County Kildare, where the Clements family eventually settled.
Daniel's father, Richard was a substantial Leicestershire yeoman who emigrated with his family to America in 1642 and was amongst the first wave of English emigrants to settle in New England. One of Daniel's brothers remained there and became a Deputy to Massachusetts General Court and trial judge. Daniel, however, returned to England and then moved to Ireland to serve in Cromwell's army at bases in Belfast and Drogheda. By 1657, Daniel Clements was paying tithes on more than 1,000 acres at Rathkenny. The lands were confirmed under the Act of Settlement in 1667.