Richard Palmer Canter & Mary Travers
1800 to 1900
Having speculated on the origins of the Canters, at the G5 generation we now find ourselves on firmer ground.

The Canters listed in the Limerick Trades Register are shown here. Where relevant the ID number from this register is included in brackets after names below.

Limerick City Trades Register 3, 4 & 11

IDNameTradeReg YearAddressDirectory
22856Canter JamesSolicitors1769Main Steet, EnglishtownFerrar
22857Canter RichardSolicitors1769Main Steet, EnglishtownFerrar
21046Canter Richd.Printers (Letterpress)182412 Francis StreetPigot
25022Canter M.Booksellers & Stationers1838Patrick StreetDeane
25482Canter J. P.Nobility, Gentry & Clergy1838Clare Street CottageDeane
26456Canter Mrs.Printers1838Patrick StreetDeane
28955Canter MaryBooksellers, Stationers & Printer184043 Patrick StreetTriennial
28956Canter WilliamBooksellers, Stationers & Printer1840122 George StreetTriennial
28370Canter MaryPrinters (Letterpress) & stationer184643 Patrick StreetSlater's Munster
28371Canter WilliamPrinters (Letterpress) & stationer184650 William StreetSlater's Munster
22412Canter MaryPrinters (Letterpress)185643 Patrick StreetSlater
22413Canter WilliamPrinters (Letterpress)1856Roches StreetSlater
31419Canter R.P.Printers186742 Patrick StreetHenry & Coughlan
33143Canter JosephPrinters (Letterpress)1870Patrick StreetSlater
52956Canter J.Hay & Straw Dealers18866 Lock Quay & 4 Charlotte QuayGuy
56142Canter J.Hay & Straw Dealers18916 Lock QuayAshe
54291Canter J.Hay Dealers18914 Charlotte QuayAshe
Note that George Street was renamed O'Connell Street c. 1900.

Limerick City 1837 Electoral List 11

Surname Forename Description/Trade Residence
Canter Francis Gent. Grange
Canter Joseph Gent. Clare Street
Canter Peter Printer Clare Street
Canter William Gent. Grange
GV for Grange Lower,Killeengarriff (18??)
This details holdings of Canters. They appear to have been middling farmers by standards of the time,rather than a landed gentry family.Only five holdings listed:

George Gough: 67 acres, in fee, no house (G.G had extensive holdings around area)

William Canter: 40 acres with house and offices. Rateable value of house suggests a farmer, 3 and 7 shillings. Leased from G.G.

Mary Gleeson: House sublet from Wm C.
Patrick Ryan: House sublet from Wm C.

Francis Canter: 19 acres with house and offices. Rateable value 2 and 2 shillings. Leased from G.G.

Griffith's Valuation of Limerick City, 1850 11

Surname Forename Street No. Parish Description Notes
Canter Francis Chapel Street 7 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter Francis Chapel Street 1 St. John's House lodgers
Canter Francis Chapel Street 8 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter Francis Chapel Street 9 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter Francis John's Gate 33 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter Francis John's Gate 34 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter Francis John's Gate 35 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter Francis John's Gate 32 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter Joseph New Clare Street 40 St. John's House, office & yard
Canter Mary Patrick Street 20 St. Michael's House & office
Canter William Chapel Street 2 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter William Chapel Street 3 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter William Chapel Street 4 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter William Chapel Street 5 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter William Chapel Street 6 St. John's House & yard lodgers
Canter William Roche's Street 42 St. Michael's House printing
Richard Palmer Canter & Mary Travers
Richard was a printer and publisher. The business is listed as: See footnote on the Francis Street area. Presumably the area had declined in the 50 years since the Canters lived there? Today the area is a modern shopping center (Arthur's Quay) and modern government office blocks.
abt 1796Richard born, son of James Canter & Francis Palmer
3 May 1817Richard & Mary married
1823founded the Canter printing works, Limerick
17 Sep 1834Richard died
abt 6 Jun 1867Mary died
From the IGI and other records their children were:
G4 Richard Palmer Canter
(ca 1796-1834)
= 3 5 1817
Mary Travers
( -1867)
G3 Frances Canter
(14 2 1820- )
= 10 9 1845
John Barry
Richard Canter
(24 3 1822- )
James Canter
(11 12 1823- )
Mary Anne Canter
(10 9 1826- )
= 15 12 1853
Francis Guy
Catherine Letitia Canter
(30 3 1828- )
= 12 5 1863
Joseph Guy
Margaret Canter
(30 3 1830- )
Richard also published the 'Observer' Newspaper (from Pigot's Directory of Ireland, 1824 8):

Observer, published Wednesday and Saturday, Francis street by Rd. Palmer Canter, John O'Driscoll, esq, proprietor.

While I have not established the link, it is fairly certain that Mary Travers was a member of the Cork Travers family who married into the Steward family in Great Yarmouth. William Thomas Locke Travers, who emigrated to New Zealand was a member of this family. He was an early explorer and amongst other things named the Travers Range and the Spenser Mountains (after the poet Spenser who had married a Travers) in Nelson.

Frances Canter married John Barry, John was the son of John Barry who was probably the John Barry, Stationer referred to in the Canter History page (see Item 43445 from the Limerick Museum on that page).

Mary Anne Canter's story is continued in "Francis Guy".

Catherine Letitia Canter married Joseph Guy, Francis's brother. From the IGI

02 MAY 1817 Saint Michael, Limerick, Limerick, Ireland
Batch No.: M700571

Christenings at Cathedral St Mary
Limerick City, Limerick, Ireland
Batch No.C700561
Communication with Larry Walsh, curator, Limerick Museum:
The Canter firm was established at 12, Francis St. by Richard Palmer Canter about 1823. He was the son of James Canter and Frances Palmer, who were married in 1794. He died on 17 September 1834, and the business was carried on by Mrs Mary Canter, presumably his widow, who moved 43 Patrick St and is listed there in 1838 and 1846. In 1867 and 1870 (when it seems to have closed) it is listed under Joseph Canter.

From TIARA obits:
Name CANTER, Mary CANTER, Mary
Age 80 ---
Where From/Died Limerick LIM IRL Limerick LIM IRL
Newspaper Cork Examiner Cork Examiner
Date Published 1867-6-8 1867-6-6
This must have been Mary Canter (nee Travers). Note that it fits with her disappearance from trade register.

From the IGI:

Marriage: 01 SEP 1841 Saint Michael, Limerick
Batch No.: M700571
Joseph Palmer Canter & Elizabeth White
ca 1795/99 Joseph born. Son of James Canter & Francis Palmer (?)
13 Dec 1820 Joseph and Elizabeth married
1838 Probably the J.P. Canter listed in Deanes Directory as "Nobility, Gentry & Clergy"
1850/60s moved to Liverpool
1867-1870 running the Canter printing works, Limerick.
18 Jan 1876 Joseph died, Liverpool
From the IGI records their children were:
G4 Joseph Palmer Canter
(ca 1795-1876)
=13 Dec 1820
Elizabeth White
(ca Oct 1793- )
G3 Benjiman White Canter Sarah Canter
(25 8 1826- )
Joseph Henry Canter
(13 3 1828- )
Elizabeth Francis Canter
(ca 1834/35- )
Charles George Townley Canter
(18 3 1834-1913)
Matilda Canter
(ca 1843- )
From Kent Jaffa:
  • Joseph Palmer Canter's wife was Elizabeth White.
  • Joseph Palmer Canter died in Liverpool in 1876
  • Joseph Palmer Canter and some of his children immigrated to Liverpool, Lancashire, England in the 1850-60s
  • Kent excludes two children listed in the IGI but they may also be Joseph and Elizabeth's children:
    • Charlotte Anne Canter (11 1 1836)
    • Matilda Catherine Canter (12 4 1832)

From the IGI:

Marriage: 17 SEP 1839, Saint Michael, Limerick
Batch No.: M700571
Peter Palmer Canter & Elizabeth Heath
G4 Peter Palmer Canter
(ca 1814-1860)
=ca 1838
Elizabeth Heath (ca 1814- )
G3 Francis Canter
(ca 1839- )
Anne Elizabeth Canter
(ca 1841- )
... and others ...
From Kent Jaffa:
  • Peter Palmer Canter and his wife Elizabeth Heath also immigrated to Liverpool.
  • In the 1851 British census, Peter's age is 37 and his occupation is printer compositor and he was a journeyman printer on his death certificate in 1860.
  • The census also lists his wife Elizabeth (37), son Francis (12, Scholar) and daughter Anne Eliza (10, at home) all born in Ireland
William Canter, printer (not yet linked to the family)
ca 1820William borndate based on business ownership, son of ?
bef 1841William married to ?
bef 1841Mary bornm. 5 May 1862, William F Joseph Canter
William Canter, farmer (not yet linked to the family)
ca 1820William borndate based on children's birthdate, son of ?
bef 1837William married to ?
ca 1837Francis bornm. 23 Jan 1861 George Tate
bef 1841William F. Joseph bornm. 5 May 1862 Mary Canter
bef 1844Peter bornm. 6 Nov 1865, Marcella Powell
ca 1845Mary bornm. 9 Feb 1864, Daniel Murdoch
Wife of William Canter
Canter - May 27, at Mount St. Vincent, Amelia, widow of late William Canter. Esq.

Death notice from the Limerick Chronicle newspaper, 4th June 1881 (ref 9).

While there is no record of it being used as a hospital, Mount St. Vincent would appear to be the Sisters of Mercy convent in O'Connell Avenue, Limerick City. It is possible but unlikely however that it was the name of William Canter's farm in Killeengarriff.

Griffith valuation - Limerick (not yet linked to the family)
Map RefNameStreet, Townland, ParishLeased to/from
(6)3.a Canter, Francis Grange Lower, Killeenagarriff40 acres, Ho Offs & Ld, from George Gough
(6)2.a Canter, William Grange Lower, Killeenagarriff19 acres, Ho Offs & Ld, from George Gough
Canter, William Grange Lower, Killeenagarriffto others
Canter, Eliza Knockane, Monagay from the Trustees of the Earl of Devon
Canter, Francis Irishtown, St John's to lodgers
Canter, William Irishtown, St John's to lodgers
Canter, Joseph Monamuck, St. John's from Miss Matilda Bowles
(5)1.42 Canter, William Roches St, Prior's-Land, St Michaels Ho & Printing Off, from Thomas O'Donnell
(5)1.20 Canter, Mary Patrick St., Prior's-Land, St Michaels Ho & Off from David L Arthur Esq
Killeenagarriff Parish is east of Limerick city
Monagay Parish is in the SW of Limerick
From the Irish Civil records (from Kent Jaffa)
Year Name District Vol:pg., FHL Certif.
1845 Canter,Francis Limerick 6:455, 101241 FHL 101269
10 Sep 1845, Francis Canter, full age, spinster, res. Patrick Street
Father Richard Canter, printer
To John Barry, full age, ??? broker, res. Seixtain?? Street
Father John Barry, occ. spirit??
By license in the parish church of St. Michaels, City of Limerick
Witnesses - Jos Canter, James Hewson
1853 Canter, Mary Anne Limerick 6:652, 101244 FHL 101347
15 Dec 1853, Mary Anne Canter, full age, spinster, Patrick Street
Father Richard Canter, printer
To Francis Guy, full age, bachelor, gentleman, res. Cork
Father Richard Feltham Guy, Royal Navy
By license in the parch church of St. Michaels, City of Limerick
Witnesses - Joseph Canter, James Hewson
1861 Canter, Francis Limerick 6:614, 101248 FHL 101427
23 Jan 1861, Francis Canter, age 24, spinster, res. Castle ??
Father William Canter, farmer
To George Tate, age 25, bachelor, res. Feskle C of Clare
Father Thos. Tate, farmer
By license in the parish church of Stradbally
Witnesses Robert Keays, Peter Canter
1862 Canter, Mary Limerick 6:655, 101248 FHL 101437
1862 Canter, William F. Joseph (same as above)
5 May 1862, William F. Joseph Canter, full age, bachelor, draper, res. Procliss?? Street, St. Michael Parish, Limerick
Father William Canter, farmer
To Mary Canter, full age, spinster, same address
Father William Canter, printer
By license in the Registers Office, City of Limerick
Witnesses William Canter, Percy ?eaulan
1863 Canter, Catherine Letitia Limerick 6:619, 101249 FHL 101447
12 May 1863, Catherine Letitia Canter, full age, spinster, Patrick St
Father Richard Palmer Canter, printer
To Joseph Guy, full age, bachelor, Engr??, res. Cork
Father Richard Guy
By license in the parish church of St Michael, City of Limerick
Witness - Carolina Shirley??, Eliza Canter
1863 Canter, James Dublin South 5:401, 101249 FHL 101446
10 Sep 1863, James Canter, full age, bachelor, Civil Service, 20 Essex Quay, parish St. Johns, City of Dublin
Father William Canter, agent
To Agnes Kane, full age, spinster, same address,
Father Daniel Kane (deceased), Engraver.
By license at Register's Office, City of Dublin, District of Dublin South.
Witnesses - Francis Kane, Frances Kane.
1864 Canter, Mary Limerick 5:439, 101249 FHL 101456
9 Feb 1864, Mary Canter, age 19, spinster, res. Craufe, parish of Killeenagarriff,
Father William Canter, farmer
To Daniel Gilchreest Murdock, full age, bachelor, farmer, res. Kilcuff Sulla ??, County Clare,
Father William Murdock, farmer.
By license at Castle ??, parish church of Stradbally, County Limerick.
Witnesses Wm Walson, Peter Canter.
1865 Canter, Peter Limerick 20:235, 101249 FHL 101486
6 Nov 1865, Peter Canter, full age, bachelor, farmer, res. Parish of Castle ??
Father William Canter, farmer
To Marcella Powell, full age, spinster, res. Parish of O'Briensbridge
Father Thomas Powell, farmer.
By license at parish church of O'Briensbridge, County Clare.
Witnesses Robert Garrison, Henry Powell.
20th Century Canters
Surprisingly, given the number of males in these families and the reasonable certainty that there were other Canter families in Limerick, by the 20th century the Canter family seem to have either moved away or the Canter name had largely died out. The records found are below. (Ref 11)

It is interesting to note that the only family found were still living at Killeenagarriff.

The 1901 census of Grange Lower, part of enumeration district of Ballyvarra:

Susan Canter, 42, widow, farmer, born Co Tipperary. Children:
Marcella, 25 (daughter)
Francis, 16 (son)
Elizabeth, 14 (daughter)
Richard, 9 (son)
All born Co Limerick and members of the Church of Ireland-Anglican.

The 1911 census of Grange, Lower Ballyvarra, Limerick:
Susan Canter, 53, Farmer, b. Co Tipperary, Church of Ireland, Read and write, Head of Family, Widow
Marcella Canter, 33, Farmers Daughter, b. Co Limerick, Church of Ireland, Read and write, Daughter, Single
Frank J Canter, 25, Farmers Son, b. Ballyvarra Limerick, Church of Ireland, Read and write, Son, Single
Elizabeth Canter, 22, Farmers Daughter, b. Co Limerick, Church of Ireland, Read and write, Daughter
The only other Canter in the census is probably not a member of the Limerick branch:
T Canter, Henry Place, Dock Ward, Antrim, 23, born England

The county border must have moved - check when.

The 1930 census of Brooklyn, New York, USA:
Richard Canter, 39, head, b. Ireland, Policeman NYPD
Teresa Canter, 38, wife, b. NY
Richard, 13
Peter, 11
Francis, 9
Joseph, 6
Marcella, 4
Una, 2
Kevin, 1 mnth
Mary McGoldrick (?sp), 65, Mother [of Teresa?], b Ireland
All not noted otherwise were born in New York
Richard migrated in 1908 and, given the age and children's names he is almost certainly the Richard from the 1901 census above.
Canter Printers: Examples
Canter example 01
Sermon - printed by Richard Canter in Limerick in 1823 (from Limerick Museum)

Canter example 02
Pamphlet - printed by Richard Canter in Limerick (from Limerick Museum)

Notes & References
  1. Unless otherwise noted this information is from communications with Martyn Guy and Kent Jaffa.
  2. International Genealogical Index
  3. Ferrar's Limerick Directory of 1769
  4. Limerick Trades Register, a compilation of directories published between the years 1769 and 1925.
  5. Irish Ancestors
  6., The Irish Times
  7. FREEMEN OF LIMERICK 1746-1836
  9. Limerick Museum OnLine Catalogue
  10. From The Limerick of Angela's Ashes [see the website to view the photos] :
    ....swing left onto Arthur's Quay, which also fronts onto the park.

    This stands on the site of the most derelict tenements in Limerick. It is said that these buildings were not demolished, that they fell down of their own accord. In this photograph probably from the 1920s you can make out several lines of washing drying along the quayside. Imagine how decrepit the buildings had become by the forties.

    Somewhere here was the home of Paddy Clohessey. Even Angela had warned Frank not to go there - the people down there were wild and ye could get robbed and killed. Frank's description of the access to the Clohessys' single-roomed home gives us some idea of the state of the place - some of the steps are missing and there is shit on the ones that are still there. There was only one privy and that was in the back yard.

    The scene of distressing poverty described by Frank is borne out by several old people who lived in Arthur's Quay and the neighbouring Francis Street. For the people who existed there times were really tough. Hunger was the order of the day, and clothing consisted of whatever rags could be picked up in the trash-cans of the Ennis Road and the North Circular Road. Food came from charity. It was commonplace for people to go to the convents with a penny and a bucket to get soup or boiled potatoes to try to feed their families.

    This photograph is of Arthur's Mews, a dismal narrow lane which cut through the houses of Arthur's Quay and was home to dozens of starving families like the Clohesseys. And despite the poverty, hundreds survived and rose above their misery to make better lives for themselves after the Second World War.

    We will continue along Arthur's Quay, and turn right into Francis Street. The intersection at the end of this street goes left into Rutland Street and right into Patrick Street. Both of these streets lie on a straight line extended from O'Connell Street.

  11. Limerick Records which include at the date this was last updated:
    • 1901 Census - Limerick City
    • 1911 Census - County Limerick
    • 1911 Census - Limerick City
    • 1837 Electoral List
    • Griffith's Valuation of Limerick City, 1850
    • 1923 Register of Electors
    • Obituaries & Funeral Notices from the Limerick Chronicle newspaper
    • Limerick City Trades Directories, 1769 to 1920
    • Local Studies Books & Journals
    • Who's Who of Limerick
    • Newspapers Collection
    • Limerick City Trades Register Online
    • The Seamus O Ceallaigh GAA Collection at Limerick City Library
    • The Mayors of Limerick, 1197-2006