June 21, 2024
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Shirley began by contacting the IrelandXO Message Board in August 2015 here. Elwyn was the first to respond to that inital query and was delighted to meet Shirley again 9 years later in her ancestral hometown. 

Reply from Elwyn, local volunteer

You ask for more information about the Beattie & Trotter families.

I looked up to see where the Trotter family lived. In the Valuation Revision records (on the {PRONI website), John Trotter is listed as having plot 2 in Mullyleggan It was around 37 acres, and leased from the Earl of Dartrey. That farm today is up a lane off the Blackwatertown Rd. It’s still a working farm though the buildings from the 1800s have been demolished and replaced by modern buildings.

You mention that the family was heavily involved with the Methodist church and that John Wesley may have stayed with the family. His diaries are on-line and contain mentions of his visits to Ireland, so you might want to check them. In addition, you could contact Robin Roddie, the historian at Edgehill Theological College in Belfast. A retired Methodist Minister he is very knowledgeable and may be able to provide you with additional background information. Indeed, you might want to visit the College library in Belfast. It might be helpful if I explain a little about the history of Methodism in Ireland as it affects the records you should search. In contrast to England and other, locations, Methodists in Ireland were reluctant to breath away from the Church of Ireland and it was around 1816 before they started to conduct their own baptism and about 1835 before they started to conduct their own marriages. Even then many circuits were slow to start and many continued to use the Church of Ireland for baptisms and marriages for years. It was the 1870s before they all routinely did their own baptisms and marriages. So, if there are no Methodist marriages or baptisms in a particular area, search the Church of Ireland records instead. I can tell you that in Clonfeacle there are 2 Methodist meeting houses. One in Blackwatertown and another in The Moy. Neither ha sany baptisms before 1874 and the earliest marriages are from 1863. So for earlier records you would normally focus on Clonfeacel Church of Ireland. There are 3 churches in the parish (Clonfeacle, Derrygortreavy & Moy). Unfortunately, all 3 lost all their early records in the 1922 fire in Dublin, and they have nothing before the 1880s now. So researching earlier generations will be very hard going.

Tradition was to marry in the bride’s church (after which she’d usually attend her husband’s). In the case of Alfred Beattie and Sarah Trotter, they married in 1886 in Armagh Methodist church. (Wesleyan Methodists). That church has baptisms for 1845 & 1846 then none till 1872. Marriages start in 1863. So the Trotters probably used the Church of Ireland before that.

The Will of Anne Trotter late of Mullyleggan in the County of Armagh Widow deceased who died 23 July 1866 at same place was proved at Armagh by the oaths of Robert M'Mullan of Tullydooey (Blackwatertown) in the County of Tyrone and David Rolston of Killymaddy (Benburb) in said County of Armagh Farmers the Executors.

Probate of the Will of Hamilton Trotter late of Mullyleggan County Armagh Farmer who died 18 April 1902 granted at Armagh to Tobias Orr Farmer and Frances Trotter Widow

Trotter Mary of Mullyleggan county Armagh widow died 26 March 1919 Administration Belfast 14 August to Hamilton Trotter farmer. Effects £357 14s. 2d

PRONI has a lease dated 9.1.1794 D3879/3

Lease of property at Mullyleggan, Blackwatertown, Co. Armagh, from the same, to Anne Trotter of Mullyleggan, Co. Armagh.

Also COM/1/7/85Y dated 1865

Tenancy Agreement for John Trotter at Tireagerty, Co. Armagh.

Trotter marriage in 1852:

5412807.pdf (irishgenealogy.ie)

1860 marriage:

5474142.pdf (irishgenealogy.ie)

I can see John Beatty listed in Griffiths Valuation (1864) on plot 3 in Tireagerty. Again about 37 acres and leased land. It is still a working farm today, again down a lane off the Balckwatertown Rd, Hard to tell if any of the original buildings still survive from the satellite image.

Letters of Administration of the personal estate of Sarah Beatty late of Tyregarty County Armagh Widow deceased who died 14 July 1865 at same place were granted at Armagh to James Beatty of Blackwatertown in said County the Son and a Next of Kin of said deceased.

Probate of the Will of Isabella Beattie late of Tyregarty County Armagh Spinster who died 13 January 1892 granted at Armagh to James M. Beattie of Blackwatertown said County Merchant.

Beattie James M. of Blackwatertown county Armagh retired merchant died 20 February 1919 Administration (limited) Belfast 10 December to David Kerr law clerk. Effects £80

Probate of the Will of John Beattie late of Tyregarty, Co. Armagh, Farmer, who died 16 April 1920 granted at Armagh 25 January 1921 to James Trotter and James Thompson, Farmers, the nephews. Effects: £625 15s 6d.

Probate of the Will of Margaret Beattie late of Tyregarty, Co. Armagh, Spinster, who died 18 May 1921at Moneyleggan said County granted at Armagh 23 June 1921 to Hamilton Trotter, Farmer and William J. Frazer, J.P, Effects: £900 12s 6d.

Most of the pre 1905 wills are on-line on the PRONI wills site. You can read them there. For later ones you need to go to PRONI and order them up (or pay someone else to do that).


Elwyn Soutter

21st March 2024        


Meet and Greet IrelandXO

The photo shows the Beattie ancestral farm, house and buildings.. From left is my recently discovered 5th cousin Gloria, Elwyn, myself ( John Beattie) and my wife Shirley.

Feedback from visitor John Beattie

Hi Elwyn,

Once again thank you very much for your time spent with us today. Your knowledge and information provided was very helpful to me and I appreciate it considerably.

It was wonderful to get some background on the way life was during the mid 1800s as well.

I am very grateful to you and Irelandxo, you are providing a wonderful forum and service.

God bless

John Beattie