Papers of the Murray family of Broughton, Wigtownshire, and Cally, Gatehouse-of-Fleet, Kircudbright, c. 1625-1918. Receiving a Plantation grant of land in 1610, the Murray family were important landowners in south-west Donegal holding in excess of 40,000 acres by the late 18th century. As such, their papers relate principally to the family estate and to associated issues.
The collection comprises legal papers relating to disputes of title, particularly with Lord Conyngham; survey material, including a detailed survey by Thomas Addi of Donaghadee, Co. Down, 1731; rentals and other estate papers including an early 17th century transcript of a Royal Patent securing the family’s holdings in the two manors of Castlemurray and Ballyweel; and correspondence running from the late 17th to the late 18th century. Of the correspondents represented in the archive who are of interest in their own right include William (Speaker) Conolly of Castletown, Co. Kildare, General Henry Conyngham of Slane, Co. Meath (d.1706), Conyngham's widow, Lady Shelburne, and Conyngham's descendant, William Burton Conyngham (d.1796), a founder of the Royal Irish Academy and of the Kildare Street Club, Dublin, and the developer of Burton Port at The Rosses, Co. Donegal. The correspondence is also notable for letters from Robert Spence of Donegal town, Capt., Thomas Knox, James Hamilton of Mount Charles, Co. Donegal, Andrew Patton and Henry McDowell, successive estate agents, which contain many shrewd comments on the development of the estate. The collection also includes some early papers (c.1625-1699) relating in whole or in part to family estates in Scotland.
The papers' principal significance lies in the light they throw on economic conditions in a remote area of Ulster, particularly in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. The survey material is especially noteworthy.
Approx. 1,000 documents occupying 9 PRONI boxes
See PRONI reference D/2860 for catalogue of the papers. The catalogue available for consultation in PRONI's Public Search Room.
See also http://www.proni.gov.uk/records/private/murray.htm for a more detailed introduction to the collection.