Author Topic: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?  (Read 609 times)

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“Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« on: March 31, 2020, 11:55:50 AM »
i have returned to these 2 photographs on more occasions than I have had hot dinners and to date I‘ve been unable to trace the man concerned. Due to him working on the Garron Tower Estate there are more than likely 3 places where he may have lived, within the Estate, in the nearby town land of Nappan or the town land of The Warren. It is unlikely for him to have lived further afield.
With nothing much to go on there may be a very very slim chance that he could be Patrick Harvey.
http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1901/Antrim/Ardclinis/Warren_Village/996760/

The age could be about right and it’s interesting to see him as a Farm Labourer and not of a Farmer as most of his neighbours are.

As you see from the plates, the book authors have no knowledge of him other that what the photographs tell.

Would be interested to have your views.

I do have a degree of knowledge of present day people with that surname within this area of the Glens and I try not to associate their facial image with the photos BUT.  !!!




CMcG

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2020, 10:11:36 AM »
Is there any indication of the date that either photograph was taken?  George Porteous' reported age at death indicates birth c. 1830, the man holding the shotgun doesn't look to be anything older than middle aged...
 
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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2020, 10:34:54 AM »
Thanks for the reply CMcG,
Plate 21 is from the “Holden Collection”
Plate 22 is from the ”Porteous Collection”

As you see from the photo below Holden was a GP at Glenarm from 1867 to 1872 so one could presume that would be a reasonable timeframe for plate 21.

Porteous died 1912 in Belfast aged 82 (if that is an accurate d.o.b.) would give him a birth year of 1830ish. Plate 22 as you say looks like a middle aged man (say 45 to 55 ish) and would therefore put the plate in the 1875 to 1880 era.
All guesswork however.
https://civilrecords.irishgenealogy.ie/churchrecords/images/deaths_returns/deaths_1912/05367/4496729.pdf




CMcG

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2020, 12:02:15 PM »
Yes, I'm guessing 45-55 for George in the 2nd photo and well into 60s for Pat in the 1st photo (and quite elderly in the 2nd photo).  In terms of location, I wondered about nearby Galboly Clachan, I know there was a Patrick Murphy there in 1901, and I wondered if he was related to the Patrick Murphy who died a bit north in Galbolly Upper in 1886 (ie. could this latter Patrick be the Watcher):

https://civilrecords.irishgenealogy.ie/churchrecords/images/deaths_returns/deaths_1886/06253/4790724.pdf (note the informant)

But I'm just taking potshots.  Presumably the PRONI holding of letters and estate reports might contain a reference somewhere...

If there are any images posted above that are important to you, take your own copy - I cannot guarantee they will appear indefinitely.

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2020, 01:00:15 PM »
Murphy could be a good shout but my reservation hangs on one thing only.... if a large house had servants, in the main they would live in or very close by (granted upper Galboly is) but if a farmer had to look after his own farmland, crops and animals then i’m Unsure that he could hold a job within a large estate house like Garron Tower.
Patrick Harvey is the only one in the age bracket of “Pat the Watcher” (1901 Census) who is a a Farm Labourer, all other men listed in the town lands of similar age are Farmers or other professions.
But hey, he very well may have died pre 1901.

Family records for The Tower in PRONI May reveal the mystery.

Wouldn’t have liked to bump into Pat on a dark night... looks a bit scary.😳

CMcG

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #5 on: April 01, 2020, 04:29:14 PM »
Am I seeing the wrong Patrick Harvey in the 1901 census?  As in this one, who isn't in the right age bracket:

http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1901/Antrim/Ardclinis/Warren_Village/996760/

I had assumed that 'watcher' wasn't his full time job... for it rarely was.  Rather, a watcher was a local person (invariably a smallholder / farmer / agricultural labourer in his 'day job'), who knew the land in the vicinity like the back of his hand and was well placed to suss out poachers for a shilling a night.  And if reliable, used time and again. 

So for example, if you search for 'watcher' in the 1901 census (fair enough 1901 is quite a bit later), you only get 29 hits back, and only 4 of them are (ie. full time) game watchers.

If there are any images posted above that are important to you, take your own copy - I cannot guarantee they will appear indefinitely.

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2020, 05:04:18 PM »
Yes, on reflection what you say makes sense. If plate 21 was taken in Holden’s last year, 1872, and gauging Pat to be a conservative 42 then similar to Porteous that would give Pat a d.o.b. Of 1830ish and therefore kick into touch Patrick Harvey at 56 ( and we both know that at time the age is a guesstimate) in the 1901 Census.

I’ve already done the newspapers but i’ll Give them another try just in case.

Thanks for your thoughts & efforts

Bigali

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2020, 05:38:14 PM »
Yes, I'm guessing 45-55 for George in the 2nd photo and well into 60s for Pat in the 1st photo (and quite elderly in the 2nd photo).  In terms of location, I wondered about nearby Galboly Clachan, I know there was a Patrick Murphy there in 1901, and I wondered if he was related to the Patrick Murphy who died a bit north in Galbolly Upper in 1886 (ie. could this latter Patrick be the Watcher):

https://civilrecords.irishgenealogy.ie/churchrecords/images/deaths_returns/deaths_1886/06253/4790724.pdf (note the informant)

But I'm just taking potshots.  Presumably the PRONI holding of letters and estate reports might contain a reference somewhere...

Just as a wee aside , I  rented a wee cottage for a weekend getaway about half a dozen times near Galbolly and Ardclinis , which apparently had been gifted to Winston Churchill from the Londonderry family although whether he ever stayed in it was a matter of some debate. Although the clachan had long been abandoned by farming tenants there was a hermit priest/monk who still lived in one of the cottages in the clachan and by all accounts he lived a fairly bleak existence.

I met him briefly once on a wild stormy day when the waves were pounding the rocks below the cottage and sending spume flying when I went to retrieve the bin after the bin lorry had passed before it took off into the sea , he came striding along the road wearing a long black plastic Mac tied with twine and we passed a few words . He had a wild haunted almost demented look about him and I thought at the time he was a strange wee man . That would have been at least twelve years ago and I don’t know if he’s still there or even still living.
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CMcG

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2020, 11:10:20 AM »

Another perspective on this is that when you look at the maps that accompany the Griffith's Valuation pages on the 'askaboutireland' website (local survey conducted c. 1860), the geography indicates that this is a 3 horse race in terms of townlands where Pat the Watcher likely lived - Nappan, Galboly Lower and Galboly Upper. When I conducted a 'placename' search on these townlands, only two names with the forename Patrick came back, Patrick Murphy (I think there's 2 of them, one in Galboly Upper and one nearby in Galboly Lower) and Patrick Gillian(s), all living about a mile from Garron Tower.  The interesting thing about the Patrick Murphy and Patrick Gillian(s) in Galboly Upper is that while both have a smallholding (house and several acres), they are also listed as the lessees of the mountain itself...



If there are any images posted above that are important to you, take your own copy - I cannot guarantee they will appear indefinitely.

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2020, 09:36:16 AM »
Just as a wee aside , I  rented a wee cottage for a weekend getaway about half a dozen times near Galbolly and Ardclinis , which apparently had been gifted to Winston Churchill from the Londonderry family although whether he ever stayed in it was a matter of some debate. Although the clachan had long been abandoned by farming tenants there was a hermit priest/monk who still lived in one of the cottages in the clachan and by all accounts he lived a fairly bleak existence.

I met him briefly once on a wild stormy day when the waves were pounding the rocks below the cottage and sending spume flying when I went to retrieve the bin after the bin lorry had passed before it took off into the sea , he came striding along the road wearing a long black plastic Mac tied with twine and we passed a few words . He had a wild haunted almost demented look about him and I thought at the time he was a strange wee man . That would have been at least twelve years ago and I don’t know if he’s still there or even still living.

He’s no longer around.
Was it Fallowvee that you rented... coming from Garron Point towards Waterfoot it is the 1st house on the right?

Bigali

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2020, 09:41:28 AM »
He’s no longer around.
Was it Fallowvee that you rented... coming from Garron Point towards Waterfoot it is the 1st house on the right?

Yes that’s it Fallowvee Cottage , I did give some serious thought at one time about making an offer on it but enquiries revealed that the owners weren’t interested in selling , I loved it there . Have you stayed there yourself ?
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seanog

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2020, 11:25:44 AM »
Landlords were in the habit of using outsiders as gamekeepers.  Understandably, tenants did not tolerate them, especially if they happened to be local.  The residents of Galboly had talents in many fields including traditional music but they could speak with their fists.  Therefore, the gamekeeper dwelt some distance away up on the plateau.  It would have been an arduous walk for the numerator in 1901.

seanog

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2020, 04:08:05 PM »
Pat the Watcher was Pat McKeown from Glenravel who lived on the edge of the Garron Plateau.
Seanog.

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2020, 04:16:21 PM »
Pat the Watcher was Pat McKeown from Glenravel who lived on the edge of the Garron Plateau.
Seanog.

Great Sean, dare I ask where the confirmation was sourced?
Thank you

seanog

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Re: “Pat the Watcher”. Who was he?
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2020, 04:57:09 PM »
Garron Tower by Paul Magill published 1990 -