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James Bowles of Silvermines, co. Tipperary

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James Bowles and his wife Elizabeth Barber moved their family to the town of Silvermines by 1823.  Elizabeth may have been from here as we find another Barber holding land at Silvermines at the time.

Barbers of Silvermines and Nenagh

The Tithe Applotment taken in this area in 1828 doesn't list a Bowles but John Barber held an 1a 3p lot on the Ballygown side of Silvermines.  After that there are no further references to him in Silvermines but there are frequent references to a John Barber, dyer, on William Street in Nenagh which is just about 6 miles to the north of Silvermines and is the main market and administrative center for this region.   In 1838 the Petty Session at Nenagh heard a complaint from James Sullivan that John Barber had 'refused to return a piece of stuff given him to press'.  On Feb. 27, 1840 the same court heard a complaint against John Barber by a Brigitte Hogan although I can't make out the nature of the complaint. Slater's National Commercial Directory of Ireland for 1846 lists a John Barber, dyer, on William Street in Nenagh and again under the heading Druggists and Oil and Colourmen with a shop on Castle Street in Nenagh. John Barber appeared again in the Petty Sessions of Nenagh in 1847 complaining that Margaret Brennan stold his cabbage plants and that Edward Coffy had bought such cabbage plants knowing it to be stolen and a Thomas Ryan charged him with trespass.  When the Griffith team visited in 1848 John Barber was still on William Street in Nenagh and he appears there in the Valuation printed for Nenagh in 1852. 

James Bowles at Silvermines

James and Elizabeth may have been living at Silvermines as early as 1823.  The town was part of Henry Prittie Lord Dunalley's Kilboy estate.  Elizabeth Bowles is listed as being 'of Kilboy' when she was the teacher at Kilboy School in 1823 and 1824.  These are the only references I can find online for the Kilboy School but a Mrs Bowles was holding the Kilboy School at Lisnageenly under Lord Dunalley in the Griffith Survey published in 1850.

Note that Silvermines was a town but it wasn't a townland, in fact it was divided at Main Street with the buildings on the west side of Main Street being in the townland of Cloonanagh while those on the east side were in Ballygown South townland.  See James Bowles References in the Griffith Valuation work books For Silvermines 1846-48 and the published Valuation Report of 1852 for images of the actual documents mentioned in the following. 
The Tipperary Emigration Index shows that James and Elizabeth's son William emigrated to Australia in 1840 along with seven other young people from Silvermines at which time Robert was already listed as a shoemaker 'of Silvermines' in one entry and 'of Kilboy' in another.  When the first Griffith Valuation team visited Silvermines in 1846 there is no mention of James Bowles and his family in their workbook notes.  Which is strange as either the owner or the tenant's name was listed for every house in Silvermines.  I believe the Bowles were living in Martin Byrne's house on which the valuators made the note "there are two roomkeepers in this house". 
On their next visit in 1847 James is listed as holding a portion of  Robert Young's lot in rural Cloonanagh and with a second landholding on Dublin Road, some land sub-divided from Thomas Delany's house and office, but there still isn't a house listed for him.  In this visit they did not record the size of the landholdings and only the landholder is listed so this visit was not too helpful for us.
Finally in the 1848 visit the Griffith team found James and his family resident in Silvermines.  In fact we learn from their notes from this visit much more about his two landholdings that were listed in 1847 and that he had acquired rather a substantial house since then.   
He still held the portion of Robert Young's lot north of town, now described as a small 1 acre garden with no structures on it.   This was probably just for growing his own family's food.
The lot on Dublin Road which James held in the 1847 survey was now held by a James Deegan.
However, James seems to have acquired George Byrne's estate.  In 1848 four of these were occupied by James' tenants and by the time the town's valuation was published in 1852 all eight of his house lots were tenanted.  His tenants and their houses were as follows.  Many of his tenants were the same ones who had lived there before James acquired the lots: 
Lot 20 - Catharine Shanahan was resident on this lot in 1846 with 3 houses which she had sub-tenanted but she had since died and two of her houses had been combined as one 33'x19' one story house (9 1/2' high) which was now occupied by a Morgan Gleeson.  It is described as an older thatched house with stone walls and was in good maintenance;
Lot 21 - Same tenant.  Dr Quinn of Nenagh ran a dispensary from here.  It is described as a 32'x18' thatched house with stone walls of medium age (about 25 years old) and slightly decayed but in good repair;
Lot 22 - Same tenant.  Michael Cane; This was a 25'x19' thatched house in a similar condition to the dispensary but more in need of repair;
Lot 23 - Same tenant.  Judith Learney;  This was a smaller 8'x19' thatched house about the age of the dispensary and in good repair;
Lot 24 - John Horan occupied this house in 1846 but it was since tenanted from James by Terence Mahoney.  It was a 18 1/2'x21' thatched house of medium age and in good repair;
Lot 25 - The occupant of this house in 1846, George Byrne, was now deceased and his widow was now James' tenant.  The house was 12 1/2'x21' similar to the previous ones in condition;
Lot 26 - Same tenant.  CatherineLeahy; a 20'x19' house similar to the others;
Lot 27 - Same tenant.  James Cane; a 16 1/2'x19 house similar to the others;
Lot 28 - This was the strip of land behind the above 8 houses
While he doesn't seem to have emigrated to Australia himself, it looks like many of his childen did.  In their immigration paperwork he is described as “James Bowles of Kilboy” and "James Bowles, Gent." and his occupation is given as a shoemaker. 
Silvermines is in North Tipperary in the parish of Kilmore 4 miles south of Nenagh.  Kilboy was the name of a mansion about 1 mile from the village of Silvermines.   It was the seat (i.e. home but also the center of administration for the lands which he held) of Lord Dunalley the owner of the mines at that time.  The statement that James was 'of Kilboy' doesn't mean that he lived at the mansion, just that he lived within the Kilboy estate which included the Kilboy Demesne (estate lands) as well as much of the surrounding land including the towns of Silvermines, Cloonanagh, Ballygown and others. 
Emigration records show that in 1840 his son William migrated to Australia with 7 others from Silvermines in his party.  See the reference below.  They were Judith Daly, Dennis Hanley, Bridget Ryan and two of Bridget's brothers and their wives, Timothy (Alice) and Patrick (Mary).  His reference was a William Hardy but James Bowles acted as reference for three of the others and a Edward McGrath parish priest at Trath (probably Tannersrath near Clonmore) vouched for the last.  William was specifically stated to be a Protestant while the others were Catholic.  All were 19 to 21 years of age.  They were transported to Australia on the ship Alfred by John Marshall who ran a business under a bounty system paid by the government finding and taking emigrants to Australia to help settle the country.
From a discussion on  genealogy-specialists.com we find that several of James' children followed their brother William to Australia: son James Bowles Jr. in 1853, and three daughters Jane and her husband Joseph Winnett, Sarah and her husband William Hardy and Mary Anne all in 1857.
James Bowles was still in Silvermines in the 1850's as we find several records for him in the Silvermines area in the Griffiths Survey.  He held a substantial amount of land.
According to the Griffith Valuation printed for this area in 1850, James Bowles held Lot 8 in Cloonanagh townland just north of Silvermines. 

Parish of Kilmore
James Bowles held a 1 acre plot of land in Cloonanagh townland.
From the same source, right in the town of Silvermines James held a row of 8 houses under Lord Dunalley which he had sublet to tenants.  They must have been more substantial than the standard Irish cottage as they were each worth around 1£ income annually.  Doctor Quinn had his dispensary in one of them.
Griffith's published report also lists a Mrs Bowles occupying the school house at Lisnageenly about 2 miles SE of Silvermines.  That was probably James' wife as The Accounts and Papers Relative to Schools and Education in Ireland for 1824 shows that an Elizabeth Bowles of Kilboy was paid £5.

Reference for William Bowles' Emigration to Australia

An extract from:



Surname    First          Year   Age     Native Place     Parents-names & location      Relations in the Colony      Ship of Arrival &

   other details


BOWLES     William   1840   20       Silvermines       James / Elizabeth                         Father is a shoemaker.       Ship = Alfred

 A Protestant. Known to Wm HARDY, Lothn ??  


DALY           Judith       1840   20      Silvermines         James / Bridget  HOGAN          Father = a farmer at S.         Ship = Alfred

                                                                                                                                                        Known to James Bowles, gent.


HANLEY     Dennis      1840   19        (Tipp)                  Dennis / Catherine                   Father = a farmer.                    Ship = Alfred

                                                                                                                                                         Known to James Bowles, gent.


RYAN         Bridget      1840   19       (Tipp)                   Frank / Judith                            Father = a labourer.                 Ship = Alfred

                                                                                                                                          Known to James Bowles of Kilboy

RYAN      Timothy    1840  21     (Tipp)               Francis/Judy    KENNEDY    Father=a farmer Tim=a shoemaker Ship = Alfred
                                                                                                                        Known at Trath (?)  wife = Alice
RYAN       Alice        1840  19     (Tipp)             Daniel FOGARTY/Mary          Father=a Tailor   husband=Tim   Ship = Alfred
RYAN       Patrick      1840  21    Silvermines       Frank/Judy                        Father = a farmer Pat=a tailor    Ship = Alfred
                                                                                                                       Known at Trath (?)  wife = Mary 
RYAN       Mary         1840  20    Silvermines       Malachi CARR/Mary             Father = a farmer                     Ship = Alfred
Then there is a general discussion of the Bowles of Silvermines on genealogy-specialists.com
From my research above and information that we can pick out from the above discussion we have:

The Bowles of Silvermines Family Tree

James Bowles (a shoemaker) of Silvermines
m. Elizabeth Barber 1812  ref.
(Elizabeth seems to have been a teacher as an Elizabeth Bowles of Kilboy was granted a gratuity by the Society for Promoting the Education of the Poor in 1823 and was paid £5 by the Dept. of Schools and Education in 1824. The Griffith's Survey of 1850 listed a Mrs Bowles occupying the schoolhouse at Lisnageenly about 2 miles SE of Silvermines.
They may also have had an older son Walter born about 1815, who was probably from Tipperary, whose marriage certificate states that his father was a James Bowles, bootmaker, and who named his eldest daughter Elizabeth (which by Irish naming custom would be his mother's name).  See Walter Bowles the Gardener of Wales, Tipperary, Carlow and Dublin
1.  William b. ca. 1820 possibly at Silvermines (Parish or townland?)
emigrated to Australia in 1840
2.  James Bowles
emigrated to Australia in 1853
3.  Jane Bowles
m. Joseph Winnett Sept. 13, 1849 Kilmore church, Silvermines
(dowry agreement dated Sept, 12, 1849 witnessed by John Barber)
children: Richard, Ellen and Elizabeth Winnett
family emigrated to Australia in 1857
4.  Sarah Bowles
m.(1) Robert Hardy May 13, 1845 Ballynaclogh, Tipperary
4.1  Robert
m.(2) William Hardy ca. 1856
family emigrated to Australia in 1857
5.  Mary Ann Bowles (emigrated to Australia in 1857)
6.  Elizabeth Bowles b. ca. 1834 Silvermines
m. Edward Miles (sometimes Myles) Mar. 17, 1851 Kilmore church, Silvermines, co. Tipperary
children: Edward William, Eliza, Kate, James, Jane, Adelaide and John Miles
Edward d. 1888 Avoca
Eliza d. 1890 Avoca

This site was last updated 03/18/21