Commission from Enniskillen to Hamilton and Cathcart

From Derry and Enniskillen in the Year 1689 by Thomas Witherow

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To all Christian people to whom these presents shall come, "We, Gustavus Hamilton, Esq., elected Governor of Enniskillen, in the County of Fermanagh, and Kingdom of Ireland, together with the Inhabitants of the said town, and a select number of Protestants united to them, send greeting in our Lord God everlasting. Forasmuch as we have drawn and signed an Address of Thanks, to be presented to His Royal Highness the Prince of Orange, for his being the happy instrument under God of our delivery from Popery and arbitrary power; now know ye, that we the said Inhabitants of Enniskillen aforesaid, for divers causes and considerations us thereunto moving (but more especially that they have been eminent in concurring with us, and influencing the country against the designs the Lord Tyrconnel had against this place), have nominated, constituted, and appointed our well-beloved friends, Mr. Hugh Hamilton and Mr. Allen Cathcart, to solicit His Highness for arms and ammunition for this place. We also desire that credit may be given to these our deputies, both for our trust to them as also in their charactering this country.

Given under the hand and seal of the Governor, this sixteenth day of January, One thousand six hundred eighty and eight [nine], by unanimous consent of the Inhabitants of said Town.

Gustavus Hamilton.1

1 Hamilton's Action, p. 56.

« Appendix 13 | Contents | Appendix 15 »

Derry and Enniskillen in the Year 1689

Thomas Witherow's thoroughly researched and well-annotated work is a classic account of the Siege of Derry, from the shutting of the gates against the Jacobite forces by the thirteen apprentice boys to the relief of the city by Major-General Kirke's fleet in July 1689. The defence of Enniskillen and the counteroffensive actions of the Enniskilleners is also ably documented.

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Fighters of Derry

William R. Young’s Fighters of Derry has for decades been one of the most overlooked works on the Siege of Derry and as a local genealogical resource. First published in 1932, the book was the product of ten years’ research into identifying participants at the siege which the author undertook when suffering from ill-health in the latter part of his life.

The book is essentially divided into two parts: the first contains 1660 biographical entries relating to the defenders of Derry, tracing, where possible, the family lineage; and the second part includes 352 entries on the Jacobite side. Apart from individual accounts of eminent protagonists in the siege, such as David Cairnes, Rev. George Walker, the Duke of Schomberg, Patrick Sarsfield, etc., there is also background given to many of the most influential families involved in the conflict.

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The Actions of the Enniskillen-men

While the epic siege of Derry is usually accorded its proper place in history, the contemporaneous exploits of the Enniskillen men are often overlooked. This is manifestly unjust because the Enniskilleners demonstrated bravery and heroism in battle at least equal to that of the defenders of Londonderry. Some, of course, rate the actions of the Enniskillen men more highly. As far as Revd Andrew Hamilton, the Rector of Kilskeery and author of A True Relation of the Actions of the Inniskilling Men (1690), was concerned ‘The Derry men saved a city but the Enniskilleners saved a kingdom.’

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