Pynnar's Survey 1619

1619Nicholas Pynnar was a surveyor, he came to Ireland apparently in May 1600 as a captain of foot in the army sent to Lough Foyle under Sir Henry Docwra On 31 March 1604 his company was disbanded, and he himself assigned a pension of four shillings a day. In 1610 he offered as a servitor, not in pay, to take part in the plantation of Ulster, and in 1611 lands to the extent of one thousand acres were allotted him in co. Cavan. But he did not proceed with the enterprise, and on 28 Nov. 1618 he was appointed a commissioner ‘to survey and to make a return of the proceedings and performance of conditions of the undertakers, servitors, and natives planted’ in the six escheated counties of Armagh, Tyrone, Donegal, Cavan, Fermanagh, and Londonderry. He was engaged on this work from 1 Dec. 1618 to 28 March 1619.

His report was first printed by Walter Harris (1686–1761)in his ‘Hibernica, or some Antient Pieces relating to the History of Ireland,’ in 1757, from a copy preserved among the bishop of Clogher's manuscripts in Trinity College, Dublin. It has been frequently referred to by subsequent writers, and was again printed by the Rev. George Hill in his ‘Plantation of Ulster.’ But there seems to be no particular reason why it should be called specifically ‘Pynnar's Survey,’ and its importance has been probably overestimated, for a fresh commission of survey was issued only three years later, the return to which, preserved in Sloane MS. 4756, is far more valuable for historical purposes. Pynnar prepared in 1624 some drawings of rivers, forts, and castles in Ireland

In 1618, a second commission was issued to Captain Pynnar and others, to ascertain how far the settlers located in Ulster in the intervening period had fulfilled the terms of their agreement. It is somewhat remarkable that, although the inquisition names five baronies, three only are noticed in Pynnar's survey; those of Armaghe and Toaghriny being omitted, probably because they contained no forfeited property.

Pynnar's Survey listed 57 British families in the Clanbrassil/Lurgan area. William, after the death of his father was now in possesion of the 2 manors. The survey stated that there was a strong stone house in Ballynemoney and at Doughcoron a fair house of stone and brick with a bawn of timber and earth. There was then a very fair town consisting of 42 houses, all inhabiting English families. There were also two water-mills and a windmill all for corn and a store of arms in the manor. Pynnar also stated that there were 100 men with arms available.

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