Following on from our post earlier this week about publications focusing on the 17th century which are now all back into print, today I wanted to highlight the Ulster Plantation section of our website

In the early seventeenth century Ulster, the northern province of Ireland, witnessed huge changes as a result of various waves of settlement and schemes of plantation.

From 1606 onwards, many migrants came to the settlements in north-east County Down established by two Ayrshire Scots, Sir James Hamilton and Sir Hugh Montgomery. Others settled in County Antrim on the lands of the MacDonnells and others such as Sir Arthur Chichester, Hugh Clotworthy and Fulke Conway.

The most far-reaching of the schemes was the Plantation of Ulster. Over two years in planning, the Plantation came to embrace six counties in Ulster – Armagh, Cavan, Coleraine (renamed Londonderry in 1613), Donegal, Fermanagh and Tyrone (collectively known as the escheated counties).

Plantation lands distribution map

This section of our website contains information, resources and links that will help you understand more about the Ulster Plantation.

Within this FREE section you will find articles on the 'Movement of British Settlers into Ulster in the 17th Century' (by Bill Macafee), 'Plantation People', 'Plantation and Reformation' 'Plantation Archaeology' (including Plantation Castles and Churches) and 'Monuments and Tombstones'.

There are also lists of recommended reading and details of primary sources including scans of some original records for this period such as George Carew's 1611 Survey and Nicholas Pynnar's 1618/19 Survey (which were later printed in publications) so there is plenty to explore as you dig deeper into each part of the Plantation section.

Monea Castle cropped

This section also highlights some of the challenges those who were granted land encountered: "Some undertakers granted lands in less favourable areas found it virtually impossible to induce tenants from Britain to settle on their lands. In east Tyrone Bernard Lindsay’s proportion lay ‘towards the mountains and is extremely rough and scarcely habitable’. When Scottish settlers arrived there ‘at the first site of the barrenness thereof [they] made their instant retreat’!!!"

Finally should you wish to find out more, we would recommend R.J. Hunter's collection of publications on the Plantation and 17th century Ireland which are now all available for the first time in several years: