Theresa, Lady Londonderry Papers

Repository: Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

Identity Statement

TitleTheresa, Lady Londonderry Papers
Archive ReferenceGB 0255 PRONI/D2846
Web Link to this Entry
Creation Dates1772-1920
Extent Mediumc 4,600 papers + 15 volumes


Creator(s): Stewart, Theresa Susey Helen Chetwynd, 1856-1919, Marchioness of Londonderry Vane-Tempest-Stewart, Charles, 1852-1915, 6th Marquess of Londonderry Vane-Tempest-Stewart family, Marquesses of Londonderry

  • Administrative History ↴

    Lady Theresa Susey Helen Chetwynd Talbot, who married the 6th Marquess of Londonderry when he was Lord Castlereagh, was born on 6 June 1856 at Ingestre, the Talbot family seat in Staffordshire. Her father, then Viscount Ingestre, MP, succeeded his father as 19th Earl of Shrewsbury and 4th Earl Talbot in 1868. The Talbots were among the oldest families in the country, an ancestor, Richard de Talbot, being mentioned in Domesday Book, while the Earldom of Shrewsbury, dating as it did from 1442, ... made Theresa's father the Premier Earl of England. ... Lady Theresa Chetwynd Talbot and Lord Castlereagh were engaged to be married in the summer of 1875. The match was arranged in the sense that their respective families approved of it; ... it is doubtful whether they were deeply in love with each other. ... [Following their marriage in October 1875], the Castlereaghs took Kirby Hall at Bedale in Yorkshire as a country house and also a London house at 76 Eaton Place. Their first child, a girl called Helen Mary Theresa, but always known in the family as "Birdie", was born on 8 September 1876 ... . On 13 May 1878 the Castlereaghs had a son, Charles Stewart Henry, who was born in Eaton Place. Shortly afterwards, the Castlereaghs acquired a house called The Hall at Langham, near Oakham, in the Cottesmore country. Here their second son and last child, Charles Stewart Reginald, was born on 4 December 1879. It was rumoured at the time, and it has been generally acknowledged since in the family, that Reginald's father was not Lord Castlereagh, ... but his wife's brother-in-law, Lord Helmsley [who died young in 1881]. ... Lord and Lady Londonderry in politics and society [Lord Castlereagh's succession to the Marquessate of Londonderry in 1884] naturally involved his taking his place in the Upper House, where he sat as Earl Vane, although he was customarily referred to by the superior title of his Irish peerage. Then, just as his father had added the surname Tempest to that of Vane, so the 6th Marquess by Royal Licence dated 3 August 1885 further added the original name of Stewart to that of Vane-Tempest for himself and his children, thus becoming Vane-Tempest-Stewart, although his brothers remained Vane-Tempest. ... - Extracted from a full account of Lady Londonderry and her papers in the PRONI catalogue:
  • Archival History ↴

    The papers were acquired by the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland under two separate deposits. D2846/1 was deposited in August 1972, while D2846/2-3 were subsequently desposited with PRONI in August 1976. Deposited by the Londonderry family.
  • Immediate Source Acquisition ↴


Content & Structure

  • Scope & Content: Stewart, Theresa Susey Helen Chetwynd, 1856-1919, Marchioness of Londonderry Vane-Tempest-Stewart, Charles, 1852-1915, 6th Marquess of Londonderry Vane-Tempest-Stewart family, Marquesses of Londonderry ↴

    The Theresa, Lady Londonderry Papers comprise c.4,600 papers and 15 volumes of diaries, scrapbooks, etc, 1858-1919, mainly of Theresa, Marchioness of Londonderry (1856-1919), wife/widow of the 6th Marquess, but including some papers of the 6th Marquess himself, of and about his mother, Mary Cornelia, widow of the 5th Marquess, and of his brothers Lords Henry and Herbert Vane-Tempest.
    The D2846/1 section of the archive begins with 158 letters to Theresa, Lady Londonderry from Sir Edward Carson, afterwards Lord Carson, 1903-1919, many of them about the opposition to the Third Home Rule Bill.
    There follows: 36 miscellaneous Unionist papers of Theresa, Lady Londonderry, 1910-1935. There follows a quantity of letters to Theresa, Lady Londonderry from Ulster and Irish Unionists. The first category comprises 55 letters from various Irish Unionists, 1912-1919, arranged alphabetically, there are also numerous letters from various women Unionists, 1912-1919, arranged alphabetically
    D3846/2 Are box-files of correspondence numbered, 1-36 in Lady Londonderry’s original filing-system. (1874-1919) (c.2400 items)
    The final section of the collection, D2846/3, consists of letters and papers of the 5th Marquess of Londonderry and his wife and leading political figures and also other members of the Londonderry family. The collection also contains letters and papers of and about the 6th Marquess of Londonderry, Theresa, Lady Londonderry’s husband including a volume containing bound-in and indexed telegrams, May 1878, concerning the stormy election of Viscount Castlereagh, later the 6th Marquess, for Co. Down, vice William Sharman Crawford and in opposition to William Drennan Andrews; a volume containing newspaper cuttings on the same subject, May-July 1878; letters, 1886-1912, to the 6th Marquess from Queen Victoria, the Prince of Wales, A.J. Balfour, Joseph Chamberlain, the Marquesses of Salisbury, Lansdowne, Ripon and Crewe, the Duke of Devonshire, J.S. Sandars and others, about the Viceroyalty of Ireland and the other major political offices held by the 6th Marquess, Tory party politics, Home Rule, tactics in the House of Lords, etc; papers about the 6th Marquess’s will, 1881-1921; 3 envelopes of newspaper cuttings and other printed matter, February 1915, about the death of the 6th Marquess; and a volume containing newspaper obituaries of the 6th Marquess, February 1915.

  • Appraisal Destruction ↴

    Permanent Retention
  • Accruals ↴

    No further accruals expected.
  • Arrangement ↴

    D2846/1 has been arranged into coherent groups according to either writer or subject matter. Those items which constitute D2846/2 were already arranged according to a scheme of Theresa, Lady Londonderry’s devising. This arrangement has been preserved. However, there is so much overlap between the two that, if a correspondent or topic occurs in either D2846/1 or /2, it is next-to-certain that he, she or it will also occur in the other.
    The contents of D2846/3, although papers not of Theresa, Lady Londonderry, but of other members of the Londonderry family, were part of the second deposit. The arrangement is as follows:

    D2846/1 Letters to Theresa, Lady Londonderry from names or classified correspondents. (1874-1940)(c.600 items)
    D2846/2 Box-files of correspondence numbered, 1-36 in Lady Londonderry’s original filing-system. (1874-1919)(c.2400 items)
    D2846/3 Letters and papers of members of the Londonderry family other than Theresa, Lady Londonderry. (1772-1920)(822 items)

Conditions of Access & Use

Access Conditions The collection can be consulted in the reading room in PRONI in accordance with PRONI's rules and regulations.
Conditions Governing ReproductionItems may be copied for personal research use only. If a researcher wishes to publish any documents from this collection, a request must be submitted in writing to the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland.
Creation Dates1772-1920
Extent Mediumc 4,600 papers + 15 volumes
Material Language ScriptEnglish
Finding Aids A full descriptive list is available online at: Archive Web Link →

Allied Materials

Related MaterialFurther related material is held by PRONI: D654 Londonderry papers D665 Blessington papers D714 Letters and Papers relating to Rev. John Cleland and the Provincial Committee of the Society of United Irishman D3232 Additional Cleland papers D1088 Papers of Rev. Mark Cassidy, Newtownard, Co. Down D2977 Earl of Antrim Estate papers D3030 Castlereagh Papers D3084 H. Montgomery Hyde Papers D3099 Papers of the 7th Marquess of Londonderry and his wife Edith Helen D4137 Stewart-Bam papers D2784/19 Additional Stewart-Bam estate papers
Publication NoteH. Montgomery Hyde's The Londonderrys: A Family Portrait (London, 1979)

Descriptive Control Area

Archivist NoteWesley Geddis
Rules/ConventionsISAD(G): General International Standard Archival Description. 2nd ed. Ottawa: International Council on Archives, 2000.
Date of DescriptionsJune 2013, Revised March 2014