Charles Edward PENNEFEATHER / Josephine SPARLING

Charles Edward PENNEFEATHER / Josephine SPARLING

Husband : Charles Edward PENNEFEATHER

Male Born : 01 MAY 1849at : Dublin, Ireland
Married : at :
Died : 04 DEC 1904at : Rathsallagh, Wicklow, Ireland
Father :
Mother :
Spouses : Mary SPARLING , Josephine SPARLING
Notes : [1222]

Wife : Josephine SPARLING

Female Born : abt 1876at :
Died : 1903[1467] at : Carlow, Ireland
Father : William SPARLING
Mother : Johanna LANNON
Spouses : Thomas KEATING , Charles Edward PENNEFEATHER

  • CENSUS: 1901, Rathsallagh Demesne, Rathsallagh, Wicklow, Ireland
  • REFERENCE: Jn I F 2 f


Female Born : 1901at : Rathsallagh, Wicklow, Ireland
Died : at :
Spouses :

  • REFERENCE: Jn I F 2 f i


[1222] Another of Parnell's contemporaries was Charles Pennefather of Rathsallagh, a son of Edward Pennefather, QC, and grandson of Chief Justice Pennefather, born on May 1st 1849. In his youth, Charles purchased a commission with the prestigious 4th Queen's Own Hussars and rose to the rank of captain. In 1890 he stood as High Sheriff for County Wicklow. Captain Pennefather inherited Rathsallagh, together with other lands in Sussex, following the death of elderly father in February 1895. He was reputed to be something of a ladies man and father of many an unexpected child. On account of his lustful reputation, the family was refused permission to bury him in the local cemetery when he died on 4th December 1904. He was instead buried in an unmarked grave at Rathsallagh, between the Larch Wood and the Gate Lodge (by the 2nd tee box). His virile ghost still roams the parklands of Rathsallagh today, sporting a silk top hat and riding boots. For all that, Lil Moore recalls "an old woman who knew him and said the half of the them weren't his at all; they belonged to the smart boys who lived in Dunlavin but he was blamed and had to pay for them".

There is a school of thought that Captain Pennefather subsequently eloped with a maid, most likely called Mary, and was "cut off" from the family. His daughters by this union were Christina and Josephine. Josephine died early but Christina survived until 1977 when she passed away aged 81. It seems that Mary also died young for Christina was made a ward of the court as a child, with the Bishop of Liverpool acting as her Governor. The Pennefather estate allocated her a trust from which she received an annual income until her death. Christina stayed in Liverpool until her coming of age circa 1917 when she returned to Ireland to seek her mothers' family. She subsequently became a governess to one of Ireland's top banking family. She married James O'Neill (known as 'Neal' in Ireland) and had ten children. This information came from Christina's granddaughter, Debby Royds, who lives in England

As Captain Pennefather had no legitimate children, he was succeeded by his only surviving brother, Frederick (Fred) William Pennefather. Born in 1852, Fred Pennefather followed family tradition by taking up a career as a barrister at Lincoln's Inn and the King's Inn in Dublin. He moved to Adelaide, Australia, in the 1890s, leaving in 1896 to spend a brief period in New Zealand when appointed a Judge of the Supreme Court [of New Zealand]. Between 1900 and 1903 he drafted the Criminal Code for South Australia, a code never enacted but nonetheless of considerable interest to legal historians. He returned to England in about 1902 and to Rathsallagh following his brothers' death in 1904. He resided at Rathsallagh for the remainder of his life and took a great interest in the upkeep and improvement of his land. One year his cattle were infected with brucellosis. While others rushed off in pursuit of medical drugs, Fred refused to do anything, believing that, in time, the disease would burn itself out. Although he did lose some calves, his prognosis that Mother Nature knows best ultimately proved correct.

- Rathsallagh, County Wicklow: A Potted History of 5000 Years; Turtle Bunbury 2003;

[1467] SepQtr1903 (Carlow 3 263]


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