Landed Estates
NUI Galway

Forster (Blake Forster)


Name Description
Thorngate The Thorngates were originally from Gosport in England. Griffith's Valuation shows that James Thorngate and his brothers bought some of the estate of the Blakes of Doonmacreena in the parishes of Crossboyne and Kilvine, barony of Clanmorris, county Mayo and some of the Abbeyknockmoy estate, county Galway of the Blake Forsters. P. Lane writes that the Thorngates also bought portions of the estates of Geoffrey Davies in the barony of Killian and Edmond Concannon in the baronies of Dunmore and Dunkellin. By far their biggest purchase was in 1851 when James Thorngate purchased the Castle Ffrench estate and lived there until the 1860s. The estate was sold, after Thorngate's death, to James Crooke, for whom Daniel Churcher acted as agent. William E. Churcher and George Churcher of Southampton were the trustees of the estate of William Thorngate and much of the Thorngate estate appears to have been in Churcher possession by the 1870s. At the time of Griffith's Valuation James Thorngate is recorded as a land holder in the parish of Rahara, barony of Athlone, county Roscommon.
McNevin Emily Blake Forster married Daniel McNevin and they resided at Clooneene (Ashfield) in the 1830s. Daniel McNevin is recorded as the proprietor of lands in the parish of Beagh in the mid 1830s but with an address at Middle Gardiner St. Dublin. His agent was Mr. Darcy of Rickfield. Daniel and Emily's son was Thomas McNevin who was associated with the Young Ireland movement. Lands from the McNevin estate were offered for sale in the Encumbered Estates court in December 1853. The owner was Daniel McNevin, a minor. Ashfield later came into the French family.
Forster (Blake Forster) The Forster family were of English origin who first acquired property in Galway in the 1640s. The progenitor of the family in county Galway was Francis Forster who was the son of Thomas Forster of Hunsdon, Hertfordshire. He obtained the Clooneene/Ashfield property by Royal grant from Charles II dated 18 Aug 1677 and chose to live there from then on. Francis married Mary O'Donnellan, daughter of Sir James O'Donnellan. The family also had houses at Rathorpe and later at Fiddaun as well as in county Clare in the parishes of Kilfenora and Drumcreehy. Francis Forster, who inherited the estate in 1752, married Anastasia Blake of Menlough and the family became known as Blake-Forster. The estate at Ashfield passed from the Blake Forster family in the 1830s. The Abbeyknockmoy estate situated in the baronies of Tiaquin and Athenry, county Galway, also belonged to the Blake Forsters. Samuel Lewis writing in the 1830s refers to a grant of Abbeyknockmoy by James I to Valentine Blake in 1629. This estate of almost 4,000 acres was offered for sale in Oct 1851. A newspaper cutting with the rental in the National Archives records the purchase of the unsold portions of the estate by Dominick Donnellan and Richard C. McNevin, a relative and agent to the Blake Forsters. By the time of Griffith's Valuation, a few years later, Donnellan and McNevin's purchases were in the possession of Martin J. Blake of Ballyglunin and James Thorngate. In the 1870s Captain Francis Blake Forster owned 3,593 acres in county Galway and 1,308 acres in county Clare, while Robert Blake Forster of Corofin, county Clare, owned 572 acres in county Galway. In 1906 Marcella Blake Forster owned over 250 acres of untenanted land and a mansion house at Corr, in the barony of Longford. An offer from the Congested Districts Board on a small acreage owned by Miss M. L. Forster was accepted sometime after 1909. see / For McNevin and Blake Forster marriage see