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The history of the Redmond family name and coat of arms

From a search of my geneology and family history I have traced my Redmond ancestors back to Wexford, Ireland. The ancient Redmond family of Ireland shares with the FitzGerald family, a common ancestor in Otho, a Norman nobleman living in England before the Norman Conquest. Tradition says that this nobleman's family originally came from Italy, being descended from the Gherardini family of Florence. The Redmond name is a corruption of Raymond, of the family to reach Ireland, coming with the Anglo-Norman invaders in 1170.


defenders used sacks of wool to block up breaches in the walls created by enemy cannon

BBC's: The Story of Ireland 2 of 5 - Age of Conquest

With Henry II of England's backing, Dermot MacMurrough petitioned the Anglo-Norman lords for assistance in invading Ireland. It was at this time that the Earl of Pembroke, Richard de Clare, later known as 'Strongbow', agreed to lead an army to Ireland. -- ireland-information.com/articles/dermotmacmurrough-strongbow.htm

(Above: BBC's: The Story of Ireland 2 of 5 - Age of Conquest, 9 min 32 sec)

Further research indicates the Redmond name likely comes from the first name of Raymond FitzGerald. Raymond FitzGerald led the French (Norman) invasion of Southern Ireland on the 23rd of August, 1170, and later Dublin. As a Norman, he would have decended from the Vikings.

The family became established in Wexford (see Wexford pictures) where the family lands were located until confiscated about 1652, during the Wars of Cromwell. There were still many Redmonds in Wexford in 1851 when my Great-Great Grand-father was born.

The Redmond family built the original Redmond Hall in about 1350 during the time of the Black Death. It replaced their original castle at Houseland near Portersgate. For about 300 years, between the 1350s and 1652, the Redmond family home was Redmond Hall, in Wexford. On the coat-of-arms, Redmond Hall is depicted by the castle with two towers upon the red shield of Redmond. In each of the three corners of the shield is a golden wool-pack. These are sometimes described as cushions, which in early days were merely sacks stuffed with wool or straw.

The official Redmond family pedigree alleges that Alexander Redmond had to defend the Hall one or even two more times against soldiers of Oliver Cromwell in the Autumn of 1649. There is a tradition that the defenders used sacks of wool to block up breaches in the walls created by enemy cannon. These woolsacks and a representation of the Hall can be seen in the coat of arms issued to one of their members in 1763. It is alleged that Alexander Redmond received favourable terms from Cromwell and died in the Hall in 1650 or 1651 after which his surviving family were evicted. The Hall became the property of the Loftus family in the 1650s as a result of the Cromwellian confiscations and this was confirmed after the Restoration of King Charles II of England by the Act of Settlement of 1666.

 

"In 1170, Raymond Le Gros landed at what is now known as Baginbun called so after his two ships La Bague et La Bonne, where he was to fight an important battle to safeguard the arrival of Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke, to Ireland. He acquired land in the area in County Wexford, upon which he built a castle known as Houseland Castle." wikipedia.org

"Houseland Castle is an early Norman tower-house dating back to the late 12th or early 13th century. Two storm events in the early and mid 20th century tore it down to its foundations." geograph.ie

"The Redmond family replaced their original castle with another in about 1350, during the time of the Black Death. This second castle was also known as "The Hall" or Redmond Hall." wikipedia.org

 

"The Redmond Family, which goes back 700 years, replaced The Hall with a new mansion they called Redmond Hall and built it on a limestone promontory on the Hook peninsula in 1350. The mansion had panelled walls, large dreary rooms, a Tapestry Chamber and three levels." historygoesbump

 

Modern day Lofus Hall built on the site of the 1300's Redmond Hall, was an English Victorian manor in the 1800's, a convent and then a hotel in the 1900's.

"Henry Loftus, who was the owner in the 17th century, built high stone walls around the gardens and planted new fruit trees." historygoesbump

The Loftus Hall that exists today was built between 1870 and 1871 by the 4th Marquess of Ely, when it "underwent a major renovation that was conducted by then owner, the 4th Marquess of Ely. Most of the building was demolished. The new mansion was built on the foundation." historygoesbump

"The 4th Marquis of Ely, was certainly something of a lunatic; it was he who blew up the family seat in Fermanagh (Ely Lodge) & tossed all the rubble into Lough Erne - to avoid having Queen Victorian to stay!" facebook

"Loftus Hall was abandoned by the Loftus family in the early years of the twentieth century." facebook

In 1917 Loftus Hall was bought by the Sisters of Providence and turned into a convent and a school for young girls interested in joining the order.

In 1983, it was purchased by Michael Deveraux who reopened it as "Loftus Hall Hotel", which was subsequently closed again in the late 1990s.

It was privately owned by Deveraux's surviving family untill late 2008.

Houseland Castle 1
Houseland Castle 1
Houseland Castle 2
Houseland Castle 2
Location - Redmond Hall, the Hook peninsula in county Wexford Ireland
Location - Redmond Hall, the Hook peninsula in county Wexford Ireland
Location - Wexford
Location - Wexford
Loftus hall - Built on the location of Redmond hall
Loftus hall - Built on the location of Redmond hall
Loftus hall
Loftus hall
Loftus Hall 1
Loftus Hall 1
Loftus Hall 2
Loftus Hall 2
Loftus Hall 3
Loftus Hall 3
Loftus Hall 4
Loftus Hall 4
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Loftus Hall 5
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Loftus Hall 6
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Loftus Hall 7
Loftus Hall 8
Loftus Hall 8
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Loftus Hall 9
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Loftus Hall 10
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Loftus Hall 11
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Loftus Hall 12
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Loftus Hall 13
Loftus Hall 14
Loftus Hall 14
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Loftus Hall 15
Loftus Hall 16
Loftus Hall 16
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Loftus Hall 17
Loftus Hall 18
Loftus Hall 18
Redmond coat of arms
Redmond coat of arms
The Cromwellian forces attack upon Redmond castle, on the Hook peninsula in county Wexford Ireland, July 1642
The Cromwellian forces attack upon Redmond castle, on the Hook peninsula in county Wexford Ireland, July 1642
 

"A part of our common vernacular is the statement "by hook or by crook" and it was inspired by a vow made by Oliver Cromwell that he would take Waterford by Hook that was on the Wexford side of the estuary or by the village of Crook on the Waterford side." historygoesbump

 

As part of the Disney Insider series, author of the Artemis Fowl book series, Eoin Colfer, took them back to Loftus Hall and explained that it was "a place where Eoin worked in his youth, which inspired Fowl Manor in the books and film." laughingplace.com

 

"Over the last nine years, Quigley estimates the family has invested $1.76 million in saving the house and opening it up to the public ... Quigley said he's trying to find an owner that will keep Loftus Hall open to the public ... first tour was July 2012, last tour November 13, 2020." insider.com

  • Floorspace: 2,179 sqm.
  • Bedrooms: 22.
  • Baths: 14.
  • Land: 63 acres.
  • Includes a private beach.
  • Visitors per year: 80,000.
  • Asking price: USD $2.9 M. insider.com
  • Website: loftushall.ie
  • Charged €75 per head. irishtimes.com
  • Annual cost of upkeep was USD $300K. thetimes.co.uk
  • At your service Season 11, episode 3 estimated that the full repairs would cost GBP 20 M. "Whoever buys it will need deep pockets. To replace the windows could cost over €350,000 Quigley estimates while hotelier Francis Brennan, who visited the house for his RTÉ TV show At Your Service, put the overall renovation cost at €20 million." irishtimes.com
  • "A three storey non-basement mansion, nine bays to the front with a balustraded parapet. One of it’s main features was a magnificent oak staircase, hand carved by Italian craftsmen." facebook
  • "Loftus Hall is probably the windiest house location in Ireland - it is said that the front door was never used, as it was impossible to close it, once opened." facebook
  • "Hook Lighthouse, Co Wexford’s most popular visitor attraction, which drew over 250,000 visitors last year." irishtimes.com
 
Years between Year Event Source
911 A group of Vikings are allowed to settle in Normandy, France (from Denmark or Norway). wikipedia.org
+155 1066 Norman invasion of Britannia (landing at Pevensey, UK). wikipedia.org
+104 1170 Raymond FitzGerald (Raymond Le Gros) leads the French (Norman) invasion of Southern Ireland, landing at Baginbun. wikipedia.org
+0 1170 Raymond built the Houseland Castle, at Houseland near Portersgate. historygoesbump
+180 1350 The Redmond family replaced their original castle with Redmond Hall, 30 minutes walk south, on a limestone promontory. wikipedia.org
+180 1350 Robert and Walter Redmond built the castellated mansion known as "Redmond's Hall" in the early fourteenth century. The family became known as the "Redmonds of the Hook and the Hall". johngrenham.com
+292 1642 Captain Aston (90 men) attacks Alexander Redmond in Redmond Hall (10 men), but are saved by Irish Confederates under Captain Rossiter. wikipedia.org
+7 1649 Alexander Redmond has to defend Redmond Hall two more times, and used sacks of wool to block up breaches in the walls created by enemy cannon. wikipedia.org
+0 1649 Oliver Cromwell lands in Dublin to re-conquer the country on behalf of the English Parliament. wikipedia.org
+0 1649 Oliver Cromwell's Parliamentarian army sacks Wexford, killing about 2,000 soldiers and 1,500 townspeople and burning much of the town. wikipedia.org
+1 1650 Cromwell was unable to take Waterford, but the town eventually surrendered after prolonged sieges in 1650. wikipedia.org
+2 1652 Cromwellian Act for the Settlement of Ireland punished Irish Catholics and Royalists for fighting against the English by the wholesale confiscation of their lands and property. wikipedia.org
+10 1662 Act of settlement. Irish Catholic landholding fell from 60% before the Irish Confederate Wars to 8–9%. wikipedia.org
+4 1666 Henry Loftus, son of Nicholas Loftus took up residence in the Hall. loftushall.ie
+14 1680 To establish the new name of his property Henry Loftus placed the entrance inscription: "Henry Loftus of Loftus Hall Esq. 1680". wikipedia.org
+4 1684 The Redmond family had disputed the claim of the Loftus family in court but without success. The Redmond family were compensated with lands in the Barony of Ballaghkeene. wikipedia.org
+79 1763 The woolsacks and a representation of the Hall can be seen in the coat of arms issued to one of their members. wikipedia.org
+12 1775 Legend of Anne Tottenham and the mysterious devil visitor. wikipedia.org
+97 1872 Heavily renovated by the 4th Marquess of Ely, John Wellington Graham Loftus. Unfortunately the Loftus family were left with a massive debt following all of the works. loftushall.ie
+45 1917 Loftus Hall was bought by the Benedictine order of nuns who resided at the Hall for 18 years. loftushall.ie
+18 1935 Taken over and run by The Sisters of providence as a school for girls. loftushall.ie
+48 1983 Purchased by Michael Deveraux who reopened it as "Loftus Hall Hotel" which was subsequently closed again in the early 1990s. loftushall.ie
+25 2008 The Loftus Hall is sold for $1.95 M. irishcentral.com
+3 2011 Purchased by Aidan Quigley for USD $730K and marketed as a haunted house which hosted guided tours. wikipedia.org
+9 2020 Quigley family closes Loftus Hall after making a loss, and puts it up for sale for USD $2.9 M. insider.com
 
  1. Ethan Redmond (my 1st son, born 2003 — born 18 years ago)
  2. Craig Redmond (me)
  3. David George Redmond (my father — born 85 years ago, West Ham, 18 Nov 1936)
  4. Alfred George Redmond (my grandfather — born 117 years ago, Luton, 05 Aug 1904)
  5. Michael David Redmond (my great-grandfather — born 142 years ago, Lancashire, 1880)
  6. Edward Redmond ( my great-great-grandfather — born 171 years ago, Wexford, 1851)

-- Craig Redmond, 2009-2021

© 2003–2022 The Redmond Family. All rights reserved.
www.redmondfamily.com/Family_resources/The_history_of_the_Redmond_family_name_and_coat_of_arms/