Memorandum Book of the Irish Courtof Claims

Scope and Content

The volume is properly entitled An abstract of such Grantsof Lands as have passed the greate Seale of Ireland uppon Certificates ofthe Commissioners of the Courte of Claymes. However an enclosed notesigned by W.H. Hardinge states that: 'I conclude theVolume to be a Chief Secretary's Office Memorandum Book to guide the Chargeand Discharge of the Fees, etc.' On the first folio is also writtenin an 18th-century hand: 'V. Simpson, John KingEsqr Witnesseth that this Book was in Lord Lanesborough hand.'

Administrative / Biographical History

The Irish Court of Claims was set up as a result of the Settlement Actof 1662 to determine whether Irish Catholic landowners who had been dispossessed during the previous twenty years were innocent of the charges of rebellion and so entitled to a restoration of their property. Catholic claimants presented their case to the Commissioners of the Court of Claimswho then decided upon their innocence. In 1665 a new Act of Explanation was brought in to stem the flow of claimants and change the redistibution process so as to favour the Protestant landowners.

George Lane, 1st Viscount Lanesborough (1620-1683), was clerk to the English Privy Council (in 1656), clerk of the Irish Parliament, and protonotary and clerk of the Crown in Ireland towards the end of the interregnum. In 1662 he was returned, at a by-election, to the Irish House of Commons as knight of the shire for Roscommon. In 1663 he was made Secretary to the Council of War in Ireland and Keeper of the Public Records in Ireland. Lane was later accused of removing documents without proper authority.

Custodial History

Kelly Collection No. 10, purchased by D.H. Kelly at the sale of King of Ballylinn's effects [probably Rev. Henry King of Ballylinn (1799-1857)].