WRIGHT, Rev. William Ball. The Ussher Memoirs; or, Genealogical Memoirs of the Ussher Families in Ireland (WITH ALS FROM THE AUTHOR)


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(With Appendix, Pedigree and Index of Names), compiled from public and private sources. With six photographic portraits and two coats of arms (one coloured). Dublin: Sealy, 1889. Small quarto. pp. xi, 306, 2 (list of subscribers and publisher’s list). Original blue cloth gilt over bevelled boards, with the Ussher coat of arms in gilt and red on the upper cover. Recased, new endpapers. Previous owner’s bookplate on front pastedown. Loosely inserted is an autograph letter signed (two pages octavo) from the author, dated Sept. 12, 1898. A very good copy. Extremely rare.
COPAC lists only 6 copies. WorldCat 3.
The Usshers are an old Anglo-Irish family. They were prominent in the civil, military and ecclesiastical service of Ireland. Sir William Ussher of Donnybrook was one of the leading gentry of County Dublin at the close of the sixteenth century. His father was mayor of Dublin in 1561. The family were also identified with County Armagh and County Waterford. The most remarkable was the Most Rev. James Ussher (1581 1656), Archbishop of Dublin, whose library formed the nucleus of the famous library at Trinity College, Dublin. His name stands second on the list of those admitted to Trinity when first opened on January 9th 1593/4. This extensive work traces the origin of the family in Yorkshire and deals at length with the Usshers of Santry, Cromlin, St. Nicholas’ Parish, Ussher’s Quay, Mount Ussher, Eastwell, Clontarf, Kilmeaden & Ballintaylor (Co. Waterford), Balsoom (Co. Meath). The appendix contains fourteen pages of genealogical charts. With just over sixty subscribers the edition in all probability was limited to only 100 copies. The letter is on East Acklam Rectory, headed paper to a Mr Challenor Smith and relates to the author having discovered the possession “Phobe Challoner als Ussher’s portrait by Leby” and continues with notes on Ussher genealogy. Rev. William Ball Wright (1843-1913) was the son of Thomas Nisbet Wright, Esq of Foulksrath Castle, Co. Kilkenny and Jemima, daughter of Robert Ball of Rathfarnham. The obituary in the RSAI records his death ‘under sad circumstances’. Ser. 6, Vol. IV, p. 90, 1914.


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