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Title: Arthur Savage Nugent, Leamington to G.F.S. Armstrong.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileSavage Nugent, Arthur/99
SenderSavage Nugent, Arthur
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationunknown
Sender Religionunknown
OriginLeamington, England
Destinationprob. Co. Wicklow, Ireland
RecipientArmstrong, G.F.S.
Recipient Gendermale
Relationshippenfriends (Mr Savage provides information
SourceD/618/259: Presented by Major R. Savage-Armtrong, J.P., Strangford House, Strangford, Co. Down.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, N. Ireland.
Doc. No.9809094
Partial Date
Doc. TypeLET
LogDocument added by LT, 11:09:98.
Word Count1014
Transcript[To?] G.F.S.Armstrong.
[From?] Arthur Savage Nugent.

Quinton Lodge,

August 24 1884

Dear Sir,
I regret very much that I am
unable to assist you in your
search relative to those
tomb stones you have mentioned
in your letter. It is so long
since I left my home at
Portaferry & my visits there
are rare. I have forgotten
almost everything I know
of the different localities
& the land marks have been
[----?] obliterated, particularly
at Ardkeen, though often
while shooting about the [Hill?]
in old times I have visited
the graveyard & inside of the
old Church I never remarked
those stones, which in my opinion
must have been [built?] in the
wall of the Chancel & [referred?]
to some of the bodies which were
found in the Vault underneath
Some years ago I attended
the funeral of the late Francis
Savage of [Ghest--y?] son of the
Revd. Henry Savage - he was
buried in a tomb alongside
his Grandfather old
Frank Savage as he was
called by the old folk
Charles Coulter was the sexton
& caretaker of the Park
& place for the late [Wm?]
[William?] Forde of Seaforde
- told me that he was in the
Vaults opened at the time I presume
for the reception of the body
of the late Francis Savage
of Holly [Mount?] & that
there were 9 Leaden Coffins
in the Vault which is
under the Chancel
I am sorry for the [-----?]
of the Ards - to relate to you
that some years ago when
on a visit to my brother
I heard that some miscreants
had broken a hole down to
the foundation of the old
church & had got access to the
Vault - I on hearing
this went with my brother
Major Nugent - & crept
into the Vault by the hole,
& certainly it was a sad
sight - there were several coffins
in a wonderful state of preservation
with the cloth & other fragments
of [V-e-?] [----?] which is usual
on those melancholy events but no
sign of lead - it was such
a painful thing to witness
we both hurried out of the
place & did not make a
[short?] examination of the
place or [form?] of the Vault.
The church was used as a
place of worship in my younger
days - and was only allowed to go
to Ruin during the incumbency of
the late Mr. Bullock - who when
Mr Harrison bought the property
took the demesne from him,
cut down every tree on the
farm, fine old ash hedge [----?]
& large thorns & large plantation
along the [bank?] facing North - a
good orchard of old apple &
pear trees - levelled the old
family Mansion where I conclude
his reverence hoped to find
treasure but was rewarded
for this ruthless destruction
only by a bottle of wine in the
cellar - he not only did that
but levelled the outline of
the old Castle on the hill - it
was not more than a foot high
still it marked the site of the
Castle : My Father who was a
friend of Francis Savage of [Hollymount?]
told me that when a very young
man he [Dined?] with old Mr. Savage
in that old house & he must have
been about the same age as
your grandfather - for he was
alive & living at [Glastry?] when I
was a young man - therefore the
Castle must have been a ruin
a long time ago - certainly not
inhabited when your grandfather
was a child - the peasants in
those days called all gentlemen's
houses Castles - the Portaferry
Castle was given up by my great
grandfather about the middle of
the last century - I am sorry
I cannot give you any information of
Henry Savage who died in 1655
or of Hugh Savage who died in 1723
but should say that both were placed in
the vault already alluded to. It was
a great misfortune that the Ardkeen
Estate was sold & that Bullock [----?] [----?]
the farm - he destroyed what was a
[pretty?] feature in that [barren?] [----?]
I should think that who ever built the
house must have made the park
which was famous for its venison I
killed the last deer more than 35
years ago - Another piece of Vandalism
perpetrated by Sir John [Boscanter?]
Savage to save window tax he
pulled down the house of [Ball-----?]
a much better one I have heard than
that at Arkdeen with pretty lake
which I have seen covered with wild
fowl - a plantation round [it's?] the hedge [--?]
[-------?] [----?] & a fine brick walled
garden. The lake [drained?] by the late
[Wm?] [Ek---?] of [Rh-----?] not a
vestige of what I [--------?] [a?] very
pretty gentleman place
The old parish church of
Ardkeen was behind the demesne
Wall of [Ballygulgit?] on one side of
the hill called Knockdhu - its name
was Shankill - Many years ago when
I guided Dean Reeves through that
part of the Ards I showed him
the green sward with the appearance
of graves - he pronounced it as
Shankill - and the old farmers
when Ardkeen became a burial
ground & the other [was?] [disused?]. The
families brought the earth of
the old family graves from it
to Ardkeen - As to the vaults
of the above - I wrote at the time
to Mr. Bullock to remonstrate with
him & such a scurrilous affair
& to beg him to have the
hole built up which he has
done at my request & I also wrote
to the Meredith family at [Kilkenny?]
but they took no notice of my
letter they did not seem to care
much for their ancestors.
I regret much cannot help
you much in your valuable work
having forgot all the old traditions
I used to hear from those curious
old folk. I enclose to you
a circular that I received the
other day.
believe me
dear sir
Yrs [Yours?] very truly

Arthur Savage Nugent