background information to the land valuations has been contributed by
Land was measured by statue acre, rood & perch; a statute acre
contained 4840 sq yards reguardless of its shape, a rood was one- quarter of an acre of 1210 sq yards, a perch was
one-fortieth of a rood containing thirty (30) sq yards.
A local tax levied on the occupiers of land (Owner and tenant) to finance
the operation of the grand jury.
These are small areas of land such as family farms or a group of farms. The Townland
is the smallest of the administrative divisions. The average townland size is 350 acres - the smallest
townland is a little over an acre while the largest is over 7,000 acres. Townlands frequently take
their name from physical characteristics of the area, from ruins of churches or forts, and from
The Published Townland Valuation for county Fermanagh was released in
The Tenement Valuation for county Fermanagh was completed between
1861-July 4, 1863.
The boundaries of parishes are always boundaries of townlands; that is
to say, one townland cannot be contained in two parishes; It sometimes
happens that an estate may lie on both sides of the boundary of a parish,
and that the townland in each parish is called by the same name, and is
considered to be one townland, but in such cases I have always divided the
townland, and added the word (Upper or Lower, East or West) to the original name, to serve to distinguish
As each parish will be separately
assessed, it is necessary that no confusion should arise as to the
boundaries of any denomination or division belonging to it, consequently in all cases the
boundary of a parish must likewise be the boundary of a townland as far as that parish or the
county assessment is concerned.
This statement clears up a
misunderstanding of separate places/townlands named upper/lower, east/west.
i.e. one townland, one parish, but in different estates for tax purposes.
Often the laborer paid his rent by working on the
landlord's land at 5 to 6 pence a day rather than paying with hard cash.
Five acres or less of inferior soil were rented to
these occupiers to raise food for their families, since landlords were often unwilling to let good
land to a laborer
An occupier holding between five and thirty acres
was considered to be a "small" or "medium" farmer who usually paid his rent in cash. Small
farmers frequently rented "from Year to Year", while medium farmers often had a lease for better
An occupier who held thirty or more acres was a
"strong" farmer or grazer of livestock who held a favorable lease on the land.
The majority of leases for a stated period of time
were either for thirty-one years or a "lease of lives". A lease of lives set its length by the number
of years remaining in the lives of three individuals named in the lease and agreed upon by the
landlord and the tenant. Although not required, the three lives usually included the lessee, his youngest child and a third
person. It was not unheard of for the third person to be the reigning
monarch or a royal child. The lease remained in force and the rent
agreement unchanged until the death of the last person named.
Explanation about the different units of measurement used in
various land valuations HERE