The Roden Collection

Repository: Louth County Archives Service

Identity Statement

TitleThe Roden Collection
Archive ReferenceIE LHA PP00069/
Web Link to this Entry
Creation Dates1611-1986
Extent Medium10 archival boxes, 2 outsize boxes + 1 outsize map folder


Creator(s): Earls of Roden and their agents

  • Administrative History ↴

    The town and lands of Dundalk, around 2,500 acres, were granted to Marcus Trevor, Viscount Dungannon, by Charles II in 1667. The third viscount, Mark Trevor, apparently was heavily indebted, and in 1692 the Dundalk estate was sold to James Hamilton of Tollymore, County Down. The son of this James Hamilton, also James, was created Viscount Limerick in 1719, and earl of Clanbrassil in 1756, before his death in 1758, upon which the estates passed to his son, and second earl of Clanbrassil, James, who died without issue in 1798. The estates then passed to the first earl of Clanbrassil’s daughter, Lady Anne Hamilton. The Jocelyns, earls of Roden, were originally based in County Tipperary. Robert Jocelyn was created first earl of Roden, of High Roding, County Tipperary, in 1771. In 1752 he married Lady Anne Hamilton, and on the death of the second earl of Clanbrassil, the earls of Roden succeeded to the Dundalk estate through this marriage. Although the first earl of Roden lived mainly in Tipperary and Dundalk, his grandson the third earl, Robert Jocelyn (1788 – 1870) was based at Tollymore. The Roden line continued through the sons of the third earl until the fifth earl, a younger son, died without issue in 1897. After this, the Roden title and estates reverted to the line of a younger son of the second earl of Roden, who had died in 1820. This line has continued down to the present tenth earl of Roden, Robert John Jocelyn, who currently resides in Doon House, Cashel, County Galway, the family estates in County Down having been sold in the 1940s. Several portions of the Roden Dundalk estate were sold off under auspices of the various land acts of the nineteenth century and early twentieth centuries, culminating in the Irish Free State government lands purchase acts of the 1920s. The residue of the estate, mainly freeholds and ground rents, were sold in 2006, thus finally severing the links between the earls of Roden and the town of Dundalk.
  • Archival History ↴

    The documents in this collection were created through the running of the Roden estate, which included the entire town of Dundalk and much lands around its environs. Most of the papers now held by the Louth County Archives Service were initially collected by members of the County Louth Archaeological and Historical Society, and deposited in the Archives Service in 2001 – 2010. Over 400 Roden leases were saved by Redmond Magrath, a member of the Society, after they were discarded from the Roden estate office during its move from Dundalk around 1920-1921. Of these, 290 have been so far abstracted and published in the County Louth Archaeological and Historical Journal. The majority of the Roden papers concerning Dundalk were sold at auction in July 2006. The buyer has remained anonymous, and these papers are currently (July 2007) held at the offices of Woods Ahern Mullen Solicitors, Dundalk, and are listed at PP00069/001/002/001-533. The Una Wilkie papers were donated to the Louth County Archives Service by Una Wilkie in 2006. The original accession numbers for the components of the collection are P/00022; P/00046; P/00055; P/00069; P/00102; P/00222; P/00226; P/00275; P/00297; and P/00299. See also related collection PP00139/ Dundalk Grammar School and PP00058/ Rampart River Dundalk.
  • Immediate Source Acquisition ↴


Content & Structure

  • Scope & Content: Earls of Roden and their agents ↴

    The Roden collection is concerned with the Dundalk estates of the earls of Roden, and consists essentially of three types of document: indentured leases from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, estate correspondence and papers from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and correspondence between the ground rent collector, Una Wilkie, and the tenth earl of Roden from the 1970s. It should be noted that the old street names in many of the leases do not correspond with today’s street names, eg the old Barrack Street includes Crowe Street, Jocelyn Place, Jocelyn Street, and today’s Barrack Street. Many of the leases are large parchment documents, and the estate papers include nineteenth century correspondence, estate accounts, rental books, and several detailed maps of properties in Dundalk, many of which are in an entire auction book (PP00069/002/001/13) of the estate. Sub-fonds PP00069/003/ are mainly typewritten letters from the 1970s. Due to the presence of financial details of individuals, this sub-fonds is closed for public access until 2023.

  • Appraisal Destruction ↴

    Permanent Retention
  • Accruals ↴

    Leases calendared in the County Louth Historical and Archaeological Society Journal in 2008 and 2009, and described in this descriptive list, were deposited in Louth County Archives Service in 2009 and 2010, and the descriptive list was revised in May 2010. The remaining Roden leases, currently held in the offices of Woods Ahern Mullen Solicitors and described in the sub-sub-fonds PP00069/001/002/, are not expected to come into the possession of Louth County Archives Service in the near future.
  • Arrangement ↴

    The collection is arranged in three main divisions, as described in the scope and content section. The Roden leases form one main sub-fonds (PP00069/001/). The estate papers are a more eclectic collection of documents that were acquired by the Louth County Archives Service at different stages; they have been arranged in chronological order, with two sub-sub fonds on specific topics. The Wilkie letters were acquired as and have been preserved as an organic sub-fonds of correspondence.

    Level Headings
    Fonds: PP00069/ The Roden Collection

    Sub-fonds 1: PP00069/001/ Roden leases 1707 – 1973
    316 items of which 1 item lists 533 items not held by Louth County Archives Service, however, these items are listed with the descriptive list

    Sub-sub fonds 1: PP00069/001/001/
    Roden leases held by Louth County Archives Service, 1707 – 1856, [1888]; descriptions taken from County Louth Archaeological and Historical Journal, numbers 10: 2 (1942), 10:3 (1943), 20:1 (1981), 22:1 (1989), 24: 2 (1998), 25: 3 (2003), 26: 4 (2008), 27: 1 (2009). Some leases were also found in accession P/297 from Louth County Library.
    315 items (PP00069/001/001/001 – 301)

    Sub-sub fonds 2: PP00069/001/002/
    Roden leases and papers held in the offices of Woods Ahern Mullen Solicitors, Dundalk, 1715 – 1973; list provided by Woods Ahern Mullen Solicitors, July 2007.
    1 item which lists 533 items held in offices of Woods Ahern Mullen Solicitors, Dundalk (PP00069/001/002/001 – 533)

    Sub-fonds 2: PP00069/002/ Roden papers, 1611 – 1986, 84 items

    Sub-sub-fonds 1: PP00069/002/001/
    Roden estate papers, 1746 – 1986
    68 items including duplicates (PP00069/002/001/001 – 040)

    Sub-sub-fonds 2: PP00069/002/002/
    Roden and Dundalk Harbour Commissioners papers, 1844 – 1980
    15 items (PP00069/002/002/001 – 012)

    Sub-sub-fonds 3: PP00069/002/003
    Listing of documents held by the earl of Roden at Doon House, Cashel, County Galway, 1611 – 1935
    1 item

    Sub-fonds 3: PP00069/003/ Una Wilkie papers, 1967 – 1973, c. 461 items

    File: PP00069/003/001
    File of documents relating to 47 and 51 Castletown Road, Dundalk, 1967- 1970
    13 items

    Sub-sub-fonds: PP00069/003/002/
    Correspondence regarding the collection of ground rents for the Roden Dundalk estate, mainly between Una Wilkie and Lord Roden, 1971 -1973
    98 items, 2 of which are duplicates (PP00069/003/002/001 – 096)

    Series: PP00069/003/003
    Series of rent dockets for the Roden Dundalk estate, 1971 – 1973
    c. 350 items

Conditions of Access & Use

Access Conditions Open access by appointment except PP00069/003/ closed until 2023.
Conditions Governing ReproductionReproduction of items depends on condition of individual items. Some items may be subject to copyright.
Creation Dates1611-1986
Extent Medium10 archival boxes, 2 outsize boxes + 1 outsize map folder
Material Language ScriptEnglish
Characteristics Tech ReqDeeds, leases and loose documents. Some may be difficult to read. Contact archivist for assistance. Careful handling required.
Finding Aids Descriptive list can be found on on-line catalogue available at Archive Web Link →

Allied Materials

Originals InformationWoods Ahern Mullen Solicitors, Dundalk, Co Louth: PP00069/001/002/
Copies InformationSome digitised documents may occasionally be found on
Related MaterialLouth County Archives Service: PP00139/ Dundalk Grammar School, 1856-96 Louth County Archives Service: DMC/ Dundalk Municipal Corporation, 1594, 1655 - 1674, 1822 - 1842 Louth County Archives Service: DTC/ Dundalk Town Commissioners, 1839 – 1900 Louth County Archives Service: PP00058/ Rampart River, Dundalk, 1900 - 1919, 1997

Descriptive Control Area

Archivist NoteKevin Forkan; Claire Allen
Rules/ConventionsISAD(G): General International Standard Archival Description. 2nd ed. Ottawa: International Council on Archives, 2000.
Date of DescriptionsJuly 2007, Revised May 2010