Presented by the Last Gerrard Of Gibbstown County Meath 1935

RDS URN Presented by the Last Gerrard Of Gibbstown County Meath 1935


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I have yet to establish the exact meaning of “Last Gerrard Of Gibbstown”.

Gibbstown Demesne Estate owned by the Gerrard Family.The family were resident at Gibbstown, near Navan, county Meath, from the late 17th century. I cannot find out what happened to them but I suspect that much if not all of the estate was taken over by the Land Commission and distributed to poor farmers relocated from the West of Ireland.

The Baile Ghib (formerly Gibbstown) Gaeltacht was founded in 1937, when Irish-speaking families were moved from Gaeltachts on the west coast of Ireland under the Land Commission. Baile Ailin (formerly Allenstown) was established nearby at the same time as Baile Ghib, but proved less successful, with most of its inhabitants moving away. Each family received a house, 22 acres, farm animals and farm implements in exchange for land and property in their native county. Baile Ghib was eventually given official Gaeltacht status, along with Ráth Cairn, in 1967.

Extract from Government Records:

“Captain Giles: asked the Minister for Lands if he will state why Edward Smith, Oristown, Kells, County Meath, who worked for 25 years on the estate of Major Collins-Gerrard, Gibbstown, County Meath, until it was divided by the Land Commission in 1927, was refused a holding, and whether, in view of his apparent suitability for such, he will have him allotted a holding in the vicinity.”

“Mr. Derrig: On the division of the estate of Major Gerrard, County Meath, Edward Smith, of Orristown, applied for an accommodation plot of five Irish acres near the board of health cottage in which he lives. The board of health cottage is, however, situated at a distance of one-and-a-half miles from this estate and it was accordingly decided to consider this application for an accommodation plot when untenanted land becomes available for division in the vicinity of his residence.”

“The Gerrard family were resident at Gibbstown, near Navan, county Meath, from the late 17th century. In 1822 John Gerrard of Gibbstown married Marcella Netterville. The process whereby Marcella Gerrard eventually came to inherit a large estate in county Galway is well recorded by Charles Synnott. As Marcella Gerrard appears to have died intestate in 1865 there were many claimants to her large real and personal estate, including members of the Davies, Netterville, Lawrence and Fallon families who were all related. The courts eventually decided to divide her county Galway estate into three portions which passed to Arthur James Netterville (8th Viscount), John Fallon and Sir Samuel Bradstreet, descendants of the three sisters of Edmond Netterville. In the 1870s they are recorded as owning 1,713, 2,594 and 2,496 acres respectively in county Galway.”
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