Alcock family genealogy

Arms: Ar. a fesse betw. three cocks’ heads erased sa.

Tradition says that the first of this family in this country came to Ireland with Henry II., from Surrey, in England, and settled at Downpatrick; but we are not aware that any persons of this name are now living in or near that town. Three branches of the family are, however, located in Munster: one branch at Ballynoe, county Carlow; another, at Wilton Castle, county Wexford; and another, at Dunmore, county Waterford.

The Waterford branch of the family is descended from the Very Rev. Alexander Alcock, Dean of Lismore, who, when nineteen years of age, entered Trinity College, Dublin, as a pensioner, on the 2nd July, 1684; and whose father was, we learn from the Entrance Book of Trinity College:

“ Filius Joanis Alcock de Downpatrick in com. Duensi.”

The Dean of Lismore[1] (d. 1747), married Miss Mason, daughter of Sir John Mason, of Waterford (and sister to Aland John Mason, M.P., county Waterford, who in 1739 mar. the Countess of Grandison.—See Lodge’s Peerage), and had three sons, the youngest of whom was:

  1. The Venerable Alexander Alcock, Archdeacon of Waterford, who mar. Miss Jocelyn (sister to the then Lord Chancellor of Ireland, who subsequently became “Baron Newport,” and finally the “Earl of Roden”[2]), and had a large family, the youngest son of whom having been:
  2. Rev. Mason Alcock, who mar. Miss Jones, dau. of Edward Jones, of Drombeg, county Cork, and had issue.
  3. Alexander M. Alcock, of Waterford: eldest son of Rev. Mason Alcock; mar. Miss Morris, of Harbour View, county Waterford, and had:
  4. Edward H. Alcock, of Grove House, Dunmore East, Waterford; living in 1887.

See also Alcock addenda.


[1] Lismore: The mother of the Very Rev. Alexander Alcock was, tradition says, the widow of the Rev. Mr. Poe. The eldest brother of this Alexander was William Alcock, who was the head of the Wilton Branch, county Wexford. He had a son (also named William) who married (the sister-in-law of his uncle, the Dean) Miss Mason, and had a son, Colonel Wm. Alcock, who married the daughter of the then Lord Loftus (the ancestor of the present Marquis of Ely); and Colonel Wm. Alcock’s sister married — Snow, Esq., Waterford.

The Colonel’s son Henry married, first, Miss Chinerex, daughter of the then Bishop of Waterford. She died young; and he then married Miss Usher, daughter of — Usher, M.P., co. Waterford. This Henry had several children, among them William Congrive Alcock, M.P., co. Wexford, who was a man of historic notoriety. He voted against the “Union;” and fought the most celebrated electioneering duel of the time, when he shot Colclough of Tintern. He never married, and the property, etc. of Wilton Castle fell into the hands of his brother and successor. This brother, who was named “Harry,” married Miss Savage, of the co. Wexford; they were the father and mother of the present Lieut.-Col. Harry Alcock, of Wilton Castle, living in 1887.

There is no relationship, that we can find, between the above-named Alcocks and those of Kilkenny, who can claim descent from the Rev. Nathaniel Alcock, who, A.D. 1628, was Rector of Ferns, county Wexford; and who is worthily represented by Surgeon-Major Nathaniel Alcock, now (1887) living at Ballybrack, county Dublin. It is asserted that this branch of the family originally came from Lancashire; while the Carlow, Wexford, and Waterford branches originally came from Surrey. In confirmation of this tradition it may be worth while to here insert the following anecdote; Some thirty years ago, Thomas Alcock was M.P. for Surrey, and happening one day to be in conversation with his namesake, the M.P. for Waterford, the English gentleman asked the other if he had ever met any of his name in Ireland. His answer was “Yes;” that there were some of them in Waterford. Indeed! said the other; that confirms a tradition in our family, that a branch of us went over to Ireland with Henry II., and then settled somewhere in Ulster; further adding: “There is also a curious tradition in our family that we are descended, by a morganatic marriage, from Charlemagne.” It is strange, that this tradition has always existed in the Waterford branch of the family, as well. We find that the oldest death register in the Cathedral of Waterford was that of “Charles Alcock, Merchant,” who died circa A.D. 1650.

There are other families of Alcock in Ireland, some of whom came over with Sir Walter Raleigh. A Quaker family of the name is, or lately was, located in Cork, but we are at present unable to trace their descent.

[2] Roden: Lodge’s Peerage having been published, a.d. 1754, could not have the creation of Baron Newport as Earl of Roden, which took place in 1771.