In Ireland the name Canter was very rare. Combining all of the records I can find in Ireland, the Canters were almost certainly a single family living in and near Limerick City from ca 1700. While some events listed in the IGI are in Dublin, it seems likely that these were also members of the Limerick family. Their most likely origin in Ireland was as Williamite settlers / soldiers / administrators, arriving in Limerick ca 1690-1700.
The neighbours of the Palmers in Laois included the Whites (subsequently the Earls of Bantry), Priors and Barringtons who we will come across again in marriages to the Canters.
A near neighbour of the Palmers at Castlewood, on the banks of the Nore was Henry French Barrington, a brother of Jonah Barrington. Jonah's autobiography (in 3 volumes) of 1845, "Personal Sketches of His Own Times", is a fascinating account of life in Ireland from the late 17th C. The book is written anecdotally and is extremely readable. It can also be downloaded from Google Books.
More circumstantial evidence that they arrived in Ireland in the late 17th C. is the Census of Ireland for 1659 which lists the "Tituladoes Names", the names of the largely English gentry. If the Canters were in Limerick at that time, given their social status in the 18th C. directories, I would have expected that they would have appeared in this Census as Tituladoes. However, apart from a possible misprint "Carter", they are not included.
In the next sections it will be seen that in the 18th & 19th centuries the family continued to live near Limerick and remained a small group. For example "The Irish Ancestors" 3 website (using the 1846-64 valuation), while underestimating the number, lists only seven Canter families in all of Ireland, all in Limerick.
Apart from Limerick, the family was closely associated with the place names Ballyvarra, Coolbreedeen and Killeengarriff. Ballyvara and Coolbreedeen are adjacent townlands in the Parish of Killeengarriff, now on the eastern boundaries of Limerick City. As usual the complex nature of Irish districts must be understood to make sense of the records, see the table opposite.
|Poor Law Union||?|
|Roman Catholic Parish||Castleconnell in Killaloe Diocese|
|Today||? District Council|
Warning - this is highly speculative
The following table shows the relevant Canter records from the IGI and early Trades Registers (also see the full list of Canters in Ireland from the IGI), which is sorted by date:
|ca 1700||John Canter||Birth at Ballyvara, Limerick||IGI, member|
|ca 1721||John Canter||Marriage||IGI, member|
|ca 1732||Jane Canter, dau of John||Birth at Ballyvara, Limerick||IGI, member|
|ca 1737||James Canter||Birth at Dublin||IGI, member|
|ca 1734||Alice Canter, dau of John||Birth at Ballyvara, Limerick||IGI, member|
(also shown as b. ca 1745)
|ca 1753 |
(see note 3 below table)
|Jane Canter||Marriage to Mathew Barrington|
son of Benjamin Barrington & Anne Waltho
|13/10/1760||James Canter||Attorney||Freemen of Limerick 1746-1836 5|
|ca 1762||James Canter||Marriage to Catherine Connor,|
St Audeon, Dublin
|31 May 1764||Mr John Canter||Marriage "to the agreeable Miss Wakely"||Freeman's Journal Dublin|
|bef 1765||Jane Canter||Death||IGI, member|
|29/5/1765||John Canter||Gentn., the Younger||Freemen of Limerick 1746-1836 5|
|ca 1765||Alice Canter||Marriage to Benjamin Barrington|
son of Benjamin Barrington & Anne Waltho
(see note 2 below table)
|James and Richard Canter||Solicitors, Main St., Englishtown||Ferrar|
|born ca 1787 |
(see note 1 below table)
|born ca 1775 |
(see note 4 below table)
|John Canter||Ordinary Seaman||Royal Navy, HMS Minotaur, 1804|
|13/10/1794||James Canter||Gentn., Ballyvara||Freemen of Limerick 1746-1836 5|
Thus, the first two generations of the family were possibly like this:
Canter the settler|
(c.1670 - )
(c. 1700 - )
= c. 1720
( - )
( - )
(ca 1732-ca 1765)
= ca 1753,
(ca 1717-ca 1765)
(ca 1734- )
(ca 1732-ca 1765)
( - )
Unfortunately the IGI evidence is from member supplied information rather than church records and so must be treated with care.
The Canter's association with the Barrington family confirms their social status as 'gentry'.
The following may indicate that the Barringtons and Canters remained in contact into the 19th C.:
Two letters to Matthew Barrington, Esq. from Walker, John, civil engineer on proposed southern railroads in Ireland with an introductory letter to the Right Hon. Thomas Spring Rice, M.P., Chancellor of the Exchequer... and an explanatory map. Goldsmiths' Library, University of London Limerick, printed by R.P. Canter, 1837 Ireland.
|ca 1766||James born||IGI shows his birth as ca 1766 in Dublin (was this actually a baptism at St Audeons?)|
|13 Oct 1791||James (from Ballyvara, Limerick) m. Francis||IGI shows marriage to Fanny Palmer ca. 1791 in Dublin|
|ca 1796||Richard Palmer Canter born|
|ca 1795||Joseph Palmer Canter born, Diocese Of Killaloe (IGI)||The Palmer name probably means he is their son.|
|ca 1815||Peter Palmer Canter born||The Palmer name probably means he is their son (ref Kent Jaffa)|
James (ca 1766- )|
= 13 10 1791
|G5||Richard Palmer Canter|
=3 5 1817
|Joseph Palmer Canter|
|Peter Palmer Canter|
Lease, manuscript on parchment. Indenture; lease of 4 plots of land in the St. Francis Abbey area, by Edmond Sexten Pery to Simon Kent, tanner, dated 11th November 1780. Properties are described in relation to Henry Holland's holdings, widow Creaghe's holdings, Butt and Leaders's holding, Mr John Canter's holding and John Sutherland's holding; mention of street leading to County courthouse, the lane leading to the Hospital, Sir Hartstonge's Mall. Written on one side, with bottom edge folded up and fastened together at two points with red tape. Red wax over tapes at front of document, both with same seal of a shield inside a diamond; left has signature of Edmond Sexten Pery around it, right Simon Kent. Four plans are held in place by the left tape; each plan is drawn in ink on white paper and shows an outline of the plot with neighbouring landholders named; they have subsequently been numbered 1 to 4 in pencil and the cardinal points have been added to each plan also in pencil. Each sheet of paper is watermarked with parallel line, in addition two have a crowned garter surrounding the Royal Coat of Arms, and one has "JS". At top left is affixed stamp duty stamp, faded grey paper, embossing difficult to decipher but contains a harp; brown on white stamp, crown over GR, on reverse. Circular black rubber stamp "22/ Pence" below paper stamp. On reverse signatures of witnesses, Patrick Arthur and John Dowdall Hammond. Folded twice, then from both ends to centre, then in half. Outside annotated with contents. On same side "4/12" in pencil "No 4/8" in brown pencil, and rectangular rubber stamp with ms additions "Barrrington & Son/ 10 Ely Place/ Strong Box/ Box / No. [1b]". 1997.0234-236 held together by red ribbon.
Assignment, manuscript on parchment. Deed of assignment of part of the lands of Coolbrideen between Simon Kent of Limerick eldest son of Simon Kent of St. Francis Abbey, tanner, deceased and John Barry of limerick stationer, dated 21st October 1809. Refers to deed of 7th July 1792 between Earl of Clanbrassil, 1st part, James Canter of Ballyvarra in Liberties of Limerick, 2nd part, Simon Kent of St. Francis Abbey, Co. Limerick, 3rd part and George Halloran Limerick 4th part, John Canter indebted to John Kennelly, chandler deceased, William Crilley of Limerick Merchant, John Hayes administrator of John Canter, part of land of Coolbreedeen held by Ewer Benn and the other by John Harty. Written on two sheets of parchment, the lower indented across top edge and turned up at bottom and fastened to upper at sides with strips of parchment; at bottom centre two strips of pink tape, with red seals on front. Seal matrices unclear, signatures of the two parties to left of seals. At bottom of page a receipt signed Simon Kent and witnessed John Boyse and James Dwyer. Witnessed on reverse by John Boyse and James Dwyer; note that the deed entered in Registry signed by John Griffin. Single blue embossed paper stamp duty, with lead strip at centre, on upper and lower leaves; on lower in rectangle "Geo III" over crown over harps over "Two Pounds", on upper Crown over rectangle with Harp over "Ireland" inside over "V Shillings"; paper stamp on reverse of both, brown on white, crown over "GR". Below embossed stamps on both leaves a circular black stamp, "2 Sh/ 6 Pen". Folded from top and bottom to centre and folded in half, then from either end to middle and in half. Annotated on outside as to contents, with "John Boyse/ Agent" at bottom.
This raises a number of interesting questions and possibilities:
Mortgage, manuscript on paper. Copy of Mortgage of Coolbreedeen, dated 8th March 1837. John Benn of the city of Limerick, 1st part, Richard Kane of Whitehall of Co. Clare and Elizabeth Hayes Kane, otherwise Barry, his wife, 2nd part. Recital of previous deeds etc. relating to the property; reference to earlier indenture of 1714 between George Evans of Carass, Co. Limerick and Ralph Wilson of Boher, re lands of Coolbreedeen and Yeoghleys set to Maurice Fitzgerald and bounds traced with Edward Power; renewal of 1756, James Canter of Ballyvarra in Co. of City; 1764 set to David Fitzgerald; renewal became vested in John Benn of Raheen in Co. of City; renewal became vested in John Barry of Limerick; became actually vested in George Freke Evans; vested in John Lord Carbery; three lives of William Gabbett, Ralph Westropp Junior and Richard Deane Kane; part of lands of Coolbreedeen formerly in the hands of Mathew Dayre. Signed by the parties and witnessed by John ???? and C.? Delmege. Written in black ink on both sides of 7 pages; held together at top left by a pin and at top left of centre by a parchment strip passing through the pages and a piece of re-used parchment passing round the top edge. Folded in half twice and inserted into a separate paper wrapper, of lined paper, annotated on outside with content. Watermarks on wrapper a posthorn in a cartouche and the Prince of Wales feathers, both with "LABM?" in monogram form under
The story continues with the Generation 5 families, in particular Richard Palmer and Joseph Palmer where we are on more solid ground.
|From||Cuffesborough, Queen's Co.|
|Date||13 Oct 1791|
|James Canter||ca 1766||Birth at Dublin||ca 1791||m. Fanny Palmer|