Waterford history

Sapperton: Where cometh a name

Sapperton: Where cometh a name

Niall C.E.J. O’Brien

 

In the parish of Kilwatermoy in west County Waterford there are two townlands bearing the name of Sapperton: Sapperton North and Sapperton South. This name is not your usual Irish place name yet it must have some meaning. Canon Power in his book, The place-names of Decies, offered no meaning to the name and just referred people back to the entry relating to Moorehill townland. In the Moorehill entry, Canon power says “Moorehill and Sapperton are really subdivisions of the old Irish-named townland”, i.e. Ballyshonicke, also spelt as Ballymacshonocke. This in Irish is Baile Mic Seónaig which means Jennings’s homestead.[1]

The place-name of Sapperton is clearly not original to the area and has no Irish meaning. Thus where cometh the name of Sapperton and what does it mean? This paper hopes to go some way to answering these questions.

Old place-name

Before the name Sapperton was used the place-name of Ballyshonicke covered the area of the modern townlands of Glennawillin, Moorehill, Sapperton North and Sapperton South. Ballyshonicke was the name used in 1640 and for an unknown time before that year. It is also the name used in 1660 for the area.[2] The application of the word Sapperton clearly came after 1660.

In 1640 the townland of Ballyshonicke was held by the heirs of the late Edmond Fitzgerald of Ballyshonicke. A certain Mr. Ward rented the property in 1654 for the use of the government.[3]

English places called Sapperton

The name of Sapperton appears in a number of places in England such as in the Counties of Lincoln and Gloucester. Baddeley at first offers “the enclosure of sapling pear-tress” as a meaning for the word. This is taken from the word Soepp for sap and Pere for pear joined with the word ton for town or enclosure.[4] In an Irish context cider-ton would be a better meaning for the name. Cider growing was big business along the River Blackwater in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Valentine Greatrakes of Affane and Francis Drew of Mocollop feature highly in the trade.

Yet Baddeley dismissed the sap of the pear-tree meaning for sealt as in salt. The main salt producing area was at Dromwich in Worcestershire but much of the traffic passed through Gloucestershire on its way to London or to the ports of the lower River Severn and Bristol. Thus you find such places as The Salt Box, Salt-ford, Salt-ridge, The Salt Way and Salt-well.[5]

Salt in Kilwatermoy

Was salt produced in Sapperton to give it its name in the Kilwatermoy context? Another local townland incorporates the word salt in its name. The townland of Salterbridge in the parish of Lismore is given the Irish name of Sál Tiobparoe. Canon Power says meaning is uncertain. He offers the story of a saint leaving his heel print beside a well and thus the “well of the heel”.[6] In 1640 the townland was owned by the Earl of Cork and rented in 1654 by Abraham Hill.[7] In the 1630s the Earl of Cork purchased an estate in England called Salterbridge. Therefore the present day name of Salterbridge in the Lismore parish is the coming together of two Irish words and an English imported place-name to create the modern form. Thus the name of Salterbridge does not convey any connection with salt from an Irish context.

Baynard and Sapperton

But there is a connection between west Waterford and Sapperton of Gloucester. About the year 1540 Edward Baynard of Lackham, Wiltshire married Mary, daughter of Leonard Poole of Sapperton, Gloucester as his first wife.[8] The couple had no children and Edward married again but also had no children by his second wife who died in 1559. Edward Baynard married a third time and Elizabeth Warneford of Sevenhampton, Wiltshire brought him ten children.[9]

The fifth son was Giles Baynard who was baptised in January 1569.[10] In the 1590s or in the first decade of the seventeenth century Giles Baynard moved to Ireland. At a military review at Tallow, Co. Waterford on 30th August 1611 Giles was one of five captains of the foot soldiers.[11] Giles Baynard was still living in Ireland in 1623.[12] Giles Baynard got married and was still living in 1635. His son Robert Baynard was living in 1636.[13] We do not know what happened to Robert Baynard after 1636 but even if he left no descendants in Ireland another Baynard member may have left Irish connections.

The seventh son of Edward Baynard of Lackham, also called Edward Baynard, came to Ireland about the same time as his brother. This Edward Baynard was baptised in April 1573 and was one of six captains of the horse at the same military review held in Tallow, Co. Waterford on 30th August 1611.[14] Edward Baynard got married and died shortly before 1636 leaving a son called Edward Baynard who was living in 1636.[15]

The surname of Baynard seems to have disappeared from Ireland by 1660[16] and does not appear in the index of will abstract in the Genealogical Office, Dublin.[17] The possibility of Baynard giving Ballyshonicke the name of Sapperton is very real but the hard evidence to say for certainty is not yet available.

Foulke and the heiresses

Colonel Digby Foulke was a long standing tenant of the Earl of Cork and Burlington at Youghal. He first entered the Earl’s service in the 1660s as a land agent. He continued to serve as an agent in the early decades of the eighteenth century. He fought in the Williamite wars in Ireland. He served as a justice of the peace from 1684 and was High Sheriff in 1695.[18]

The Foulke family originally came from Gonstan in Staffordshire. Yet they may have been relations of Bartholomew Foulke from Gloucestershire who was M.P. for County Tipperary in the 1660’s.[19]

Digby Foulke acquired much of the area of Kilwatermoy that was later held by the families of Smyth of Headborough and Moore of Moore Hill. Digby Foulke left a son and two daughters but the son died without an heir and thus Digby’s lands was divided between the two daughters. At an unknown date William Smyth married Elizabeth, daughter and co-heiress of Digby Foulke. This William Smyth was High Sheriff of County Waterford in 1734 and was the son of Percy Smyth, who was grandson of Sir Percy Smyth of Ballynatray. William and Elizabeth Smyth had no children and William was succeeded by his nephew Percy Scott who took the name of Smyth.[20] Thus Percy Scott Smyth came to own the lands of Headborough and the adjunct townlands.

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Sapperton House 

Foulke and Moore

The other heiress, Anne Foulke, married William Moore, third son of Stephen Moore, 1st Viscount Mount Cashell of Kilworth, County Cork. William Moore came to live on part of the old Irish townland of Ballyshonicke which he renamed Moore Hill and died in 1810. William’s eldest son, Stephen Moore built his own house closer to the River Bride in an area of old Ballyshonicke which came to be called Sapperton. Stephen Moore died unmarried in September 1838 and Sapperton passed to his younger brother, William Moore of Moore Hill. This William Moore thus held both Moore Hill and Sapperton and was succeeded by his son William Moore in 1849. This William Moore held Moore Hill and Sapperton at the time of Griffith’s Valuation. In August 1845 he married Jane Goodden but died in 1856 without any children. Moore Hill and Sapperton were inherited by his sister, Helene Anne, wife of Robert Perceval-Maxwell of County Down.[21]

Sapperton and the surname of Sapperton

The name of Sapperton may not have come from the place called Sapperton but from a surname called Sapperton. In the 1620’s Corporal William Sapperton was a member of an army troop belonging to Sir William St. Leger, Lord President of Munster. In July 1628 Corporal Sapperton was directed to take the troop to Youghal and stayed there until the town had paid the overdue taxes levied on towns to fund the army. Corporal Sapperton stayed in Youghal until December 1628 when the overdue taxes were paid.[22] It may be that Corporal Sapperton liked the area around Youghal and decided to stay. By such he may have given his name to the townland formerly known as Ballyshonicke.

The first appearance of Sapperton

In 1712 the area of Sapperton was still known by its old Irish name of Ballyshonicke. In 1735, when the area was then held by Digby Foulke and family, the name of Sapperton first appears in print. The name may have been in use for some years before 1734 but was still not fully recognised as the old name of Ballyshonicke was written beside it to help all readers to identify the place. By 1841 the name of Sapperton was fully recognised and needed to Irish name beside it to help readers of the first Ordnance Survey maps.[23]

The long gestation period is not unusual. Near Ballyduff the townland of Marshtown was known by that name from the 1730s but was still called by its old Irish name of Ballygomeashy in the Tithe records of the 1830s and then not become fully recognised as Marshtown until the 1841 Ordnance Survey map. The work of making the first Ordnance Survey maps established the place-names of Ireland, be they in Irish or English form, and we still use those 1841 names today.

As for Sapperton the jury is still out on where the place-name came from and by whom it was introduced. This article offered suggestions but did not find the conclusive proof to establish certainty – work for another day.

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End of post

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[1] Canon Patrick Power, The place-names of Decies (Cork University Press, 1952), p. 29

[2] Robert C. Simington (ed.), The Civil Survey A.D. 1654-1656 County of Waterford (Stationery Office, Dublin, 1942), p. 19 ; Seamus Pender (ed.), A census of Ireland circa 1659 (Irish Manuscripts Commission, Dublin, 2002), p. 338

[3] Robert C. Simington (ed.), The Civil Survey A.D. 1654-1656 County of Waterford (Stationery Office, Dublin, 1942), p. 19

[4] W. St. Clair Baddeley, Place-names of Gloucestershire (Gloucester, 1913), p. 135

[5] W. St. Clair Baddeley, Place-names of Gloucestershire (Gloucester, 1913), pp. 133-4

[6] Canon Patrick Power, The place-names of Decies (Cork University Press, 1952), p. 55

[7] Robert C. Simington (ed.), The Civil Survey A.D. 1654-1656 County of Waterford (Stationery Office, Dublin, 1942), p. 7

[8] Edward Kite, The Baynard monuments in Lacock Church (Devizes, 1857), pedigree chart of Baynard family. Baynard’s brother-in-law, Sir Giles Poole served as Member of Parliament in the time of Queen Mary and was appointed provost marshal of Ireland in 1558. = http://www.historyofparliamentonline.org/volume/1509-1558/member/poole-sir-giles-1517-89 accessed on 28 August 2013

[9] Edward Kite, The Baynard monuments in Lacock Church (Devizes, 1857), pedigree chart of Baynard family

[10] Edward Kite, The Baynard monuments in Lacock Church (Devizes, 1857), p. 8

[11] J.S. Brewer & William Bullen (eds.), Calendar of the Carew Manuscripts preserved in the Archiepiscopal library at Lambeth (Kraus reprint, 1974), p. 89

[12] Edward Kite, The Baynard monuments in Lacock Church (Devizes, 1857), pedigree chart of Baynard family

[13] George S. Fry & Edward A. Fry (eds.), Abstracts of Wiltshire Inquisitions Post Mortem in the reign of King Charles the first (British Record Society, London, 1901), p. 331

[14] J.S. Brewer & William Bullen (eds.), Calendar of the Carew Manuscripts preserved in the Archiepiscopal library at Lambeth (Kraus reprint, 1974), p. 88

[15] George S. Fry & Edward A. Fry (eds.), Abstracts of Wiltshire Inquisitions Post Mortem in the reign of King Charles the first (British Record Society, London, 1901), p. 331

[16] Seamus Pender (ed.), A census of Ireland circa 1659 (Irish Manuscripts Commission, Dublin, 202), p. 654

[17] P. Beryl Eustace, ‘Index of Will Abstracts in the Genealogical Office, Dublin’, in John Grenham (ed.), The Genealogical Office, Dublin (Irish Manuscripts Commission, Dublin, 1998), p. 104

[18] Stephen Ball (ed.), Lismore Castle Papers at the National Library (National Library of Ireland, 2007), p. 235

[19] ‘M.P.’s in County Tipperary’, in the Tipperary Historical Journal, 2004, p. 143

[20] Burke’s Irish Family Records, 1976 (reprint, 2007), p. 1039

[21] Burke’s Irish Family Records, 1976 (reprint, 2007), pp. 820, 821

[22] Richard Caulfield, The Council Book of the Corporation of Youghal (Guildford, 1878), pp. 594, 595

[23] www.logainm.ie/Iomhanna/151%20PL%20c.a.m&c.b/50160agus50159 accessed on 23 August 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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