This family is not sprung from any of the ancient Irish houses of Butler; but from George Butler, of Fenny Drayton, in Cambridgeshire, and of Tewin, in Hertfordshire.
This George, living in 1575, son of Edward Butler, was said to be descended from John Butler, living at Waresley, Huntingdonshire, in 1376.
SIR STEPHEN BUTLER, Knight (descended from John Butler, of Waresley, Huntingdonshire, living in 1376),
settled in Ireland in the reign of JAMES I, being an undertaker in the plantation of the province of Ulster, and having obtained a grant of 2,000 acres of land in County Cavan, erected a baronial castle of great strength.
Sir Stephen and his co-undertakers of the precinct of Loughtee commenced, according to their agreement, the plantation of a town at Belturbet; and in his time thirty-five houses were erected, all inhabited by British tenants, most of whom were tradesmen, each having a house and garden plot, with four acres of land, and commons for a certain number of cattle.Sir Stephen married Mary, daughter and co-heir of Gervais Brinsley, of Brinsley, in Nottinghamshire; and dying in 1639, was succeeded by his eldest son,
JAMES BUTLER, of Belturbet; at whose decease, without issue, the estates devolved upon his brother,
STEPHEN BUTLER, MP for Belturbet, who wedded Anne, daughter of Sir James Barry, 1st Baron Barry of Santry, and was succeeded at his decease, in 1662, by his eldest son,
FRANCIS BUTLER, MP for Belturbet. This gentleman bore arms in the royal cause during the civil wars.
He married Judith, daughter of the Rt Hon Sir Theophilus Jones, of Osberstown, County Kildare; and was succeeded at his decease, in 1792, by his eldest son,
THE RT HON THEOPHILUS BUTLER (c1669-1723), of Belturbet, County Cavan, who was elevated to the peerage, in 1715, as Baron Newtownbutler, with remainder, in default of male issue, to the male descendants of his father, having previously represented County Cavan in parliament and being called to the Privy Council.
His lordship espoused Emilia, elder daughter and co-heir of James Stopford, of Tara, County Meath; but leaving no issue at his decease, the title devolved upon his brother,
BRINSLEY, 2nd Baron (1670-1735), Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod, and colonel of the battle-axe guards, who was created Viscount Lanesborough in 1728.
His lordship married Catherine, daughter and co-heir of Neville Pooley, of the city of Dublin, by whom he had no less than twenty-three children, five only of whom, however, survived infancy, namely,
HUMPHREY, 2nd Viscount;His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,
Thomas, Governor of Limerick;
Robert, MP, captain of the battle-axe guards;
John, MP for Newcastle;
Judith, m to B J Cramer.
HUMPHREY, 2nd Viscount (1700-68), who wedded, in 1726, Mary, daughter and heir of Richard Berry, of Wardenstown, County Westmeath, by whom he had an only son.
His lordship was created EARL OF LANESBOROUGH, in 1756, and was succeeded by his son,
BRINSLEY, 2nd Earl (1728-79), who wedded, in 1754, Jane, only daughter of Robert, 1st Earl of Belvedere, and had issue,
ROBERT HERBERT, his successor;His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,
Mary; Catherine; Charlotte;
ROBERT HERBERT, 3rd Earl (1759-1806), who married Elizabeth, eldest daughter of the Rt Hon David La Touche, by whom he had two sons,
BRINSLEY, his heir;
The titles expired following the decease of the 9th Earl in 1998
- Brinsley Butler, 4th Earl of Lanesborough (1783-1847)
- George John Danvers Butler-Danvers, 5th Earl of Lanesborough (1794-1866)
- John Vansittart Danvers Butler-Danvers, 6th Earl of Lanesborough (1839-1905)
- Charles John Brinsley Butler, 7th Earl of Lanesborough (1865-1929)
- Henry Cavendish Butler, 8th Earl of Lanesborough (1868-1950)
- Denis Anthony Brian Butler, 9th Earl of Lanesborough (1918-98)
LANESBOROUGH LODGE, County Cavan (otherwise known as Quivvy Lodge), sat very close to the border with County Fermanagh.
It was adjacent to Lord Erne's land at Crom estate.
It was a two-storey Tudor-Revival house of ca 1810, comprising a main block and a lower, two-storey service wing.
The house was extended to the rear in 1846.
There were gables, mullioned windows, and a corbelled oriel.
The house is now derelict and ruinous, having been burnt in the 1920s.
The importance and scale of the estate is indicated on historic maps by the related structures that are marked, including a yacht house, boat house, boat slips, a landing place, an engine house, various outbuildings, ice-house, and a walled garden.
Though now ruinous, Lanesborough Lodge retains much of its historic character and form.
I have unearthed this entry from a publication of 1852:
Since this justly admired nobleman and his amiable Countess returned to their estates in Cavan, the tenantry have had one unbroken scene of rejoicing. To-day a large party, numbering uupwards of 1,000, dined at Lanesborough Lodge, Belturbet, on the invitation of the Earl and Countess. We will give the particulars in our next. It is to be regretted that these reunions are not more frequent generally, as they would tend to break down prejudices and unite landlords and tenants in all struggles for their mutual advantage and the benefit of the common weal.There is an old estate school on the way to the Lodge and beyond are the remains of a laundry and the steward's house.
The family also owned Inish Rath Island on Upper Lough Erne, County Fermanagh. The island is located north-west of Crom estate.
The Victorian-Tudor style house on the island (above) was built in 1854 by the Hon Henry Cavendish Butler-Danvers (1811-91), a half-brother of the 5th Earl of Lanesborough.During the early 20th century, the house was used for boating parties etc.
Inish Rath remained in the ownership of the Butlers for a hundred years and then, in the 1950s, was sold.
The island went through continuous change of ownership for about thirty years, when it was bought and sold.
At the height of the Northern Ireland Troubles, in 1982, property prices slumped in this border area.
A group of Hare Krishna monks, led by a German follower, Prithu Das, pooled their resources and took out a bank loan to buy Inish Rath, a perfect setting for a Hare Krishna centre.
The Hare Krishna temple was established in the west wing of the house with a magnificent gold altar at one end of the long room and a life size representation of Swami Prabhupada at the other.
Oriental arches frame the windows and polished pine floors add to the overall feeling of light and space.
SWITHLAND HALL, Leicestershire, was held by the family of Danvers until 1796, but after the death of Sir John Danvers (the last male of his line) it passed to his son-in-law, Augustus Richard Butler, 2nd son of the 2nd Earl of Lanesborough, who adopted the surname of Danvers-Butler. The current hall was partially completed in 1834 and finished in 1852 by the 6th Earl.The Lanesboroughs owned the following residences:
Other seats ~ Lanesborough Lodge, County Fermanagh; Swithland Hall, Leicestershire.
Town residence ~ 8 Great Stanhope Street, London.
First published in July, 2013. Lanesborough arms courtesy of European Heraldry.