| French (Huguenot)
Connection: Huguenots in Ireland
The name Guerin(sic) is of French origin. Huguenots refugees
left France in four waves.
The first three waves of 1572, 1628 and 1685 came from the business and
landed classes; most likely these would have been the most highly educated
of the Huguenots. In addition the 1685 wave had a high military content
as many of the Huguenots serving in the French army of Louis XIV were
attracted to the Protestant cause under William III and they formed a
large contingent of William’s army at the Boyne, Aughrim and Limerick.
The fourth and final wave were driven out by the persecution of 1745-54
and were principally from the peasantry, small farmer and small manufacturing
classes who had lacked the wealth or opportunity to escape as their richer
co-religionists had done earlier.
As early as 1662 the Duke of Ormond introduced into the
Irish Parliament “An Act for Encouraging Protestant Strangers and
Others to Inhabit Ireland.”
- The ports of Dublin (4 French Churches), Waterford (1 French Church)
and Cork (2 French Churches) were centres where the Huguenots established
themselves as entrepreneurs of business and commerce (import/export
of wines and other goods, goldsmiths, spinners/weavers, glassmakers).
The permanency and relative size of these settlements can be gauged
from the numbers of their own French Churches, which these refugee
settlements were able to support.
- Portarlington (1 French Church) was a new model town built to host
those army officers, from the French(Huguenot) regiments of William
of Orange, who were pensioned off at the close of the war in Ireland(1691).
Subsequently it was also home to pensioners from those same regiments
who went on to serve in Marlborough’s army on the continent.
“The (Portarlington)settlers, who were of varied
origin, coming from Normandy, Languedoc, Saintonge and Dauphiny, were
mainly military in profession, and were nearly all aristocratic in rank.”
- Youghal, Co. Cork had a similar but much smaller military pensioner
- Lisburn, Co. Down. Spinning and weaving of flax; manufacture of
linen. This was to grow into the successful linen industry of the
North of Ireland.
Other lesser settlements and their activities (some short-lived)
- Innishannon, Co. Cork. Cultivation of silk worms and silk weaving.
- Clonmel/Carick-on-Suir, Co. Tipperary. Spinning and weaving of
- Kilkenny City, Wexford. General trading.
- Dundalk and Collon, Co. Louth. Linen manufacture and farming settlements
- Belfast. Some military pensioners; however in contrast to the aristocratic
pensioners of Portarlington and Youghal those of Belfast were made
up of the rank and file of Schomberg’s army.