Miscellaneous Torrens Family Documents
Following notes (4 pages) are part of Kernoghan's notes to JST. Pencilled on
the top is the date 8.3.20.
Hearth Money Rolls of Co. Londonderry, preserved in MS in Public Record Office,
Dublin, show in the whole country:
None in Tamlaghtfinlagan, Banagher, Dungiven, Balteagh or Boveva parishes. But
in Aghadowey Parish, townland Caheny is Hu. Torrance
Desertoghill ' ' Culneman is Hu. Torrance
Synod of Ulster Records:
Vol II p. 67, 1724 A.D. in Antrim Presbytery there appeared at Synod meeting,
with the minister of Ballyclare, Co. Antrim James Terrance. Ballyclare is near
Vol II p. 1, 1721 A.D. in Colerain Presbytery appeared at Synod meeting, with
Math. Clerk, minister of Kilrea and Garvagh District, Sam. Torrence.
(Pencilled in margin is note "John Torrence of Georgia named eldest son
Session Book of Aghadowey Presbyterian Congregation (1701-Mar. 10, 1761) has
several references to Torrens. No Register of Baptisms and Marriages exists
till 1845 (marriage) and 1855 (baptismal). No Kilrea or Garvagh Book exists for
18th century. Garvagh Book of baptisms and marriages begins 1808.
From Aghadowey Book I take the following:
May 16, 1704. A malicious charge was made before the Session against Archibald
Torrence, but it was not proven, and withdrawn as being done "through
Feb. 19, 1705/6 Arch.d Torrence and Arch.d McPheadrice (modern McFetrige) were
appointed collectors for a part or "quarter" of the congregation; no
May 25, 1708. John Torrence's name mentioned.
July 20, 1714. Hugh Torrence was cited to appear at meeting of Session, but did
not appear. Subject related to a matter in which the Bishop's Court was
concerned. Subject is obscure. The Bishop's Ecclesiastical Court was active at
this time in prosecutions of Presbyterians.
Apr. May 1728 Samuel Hog was made an elder, or member of Session.
Nov. 16, 1739 "At a Session .... and Alex.r Torrence who was chosen since
our last" (Oct. 27 1728).
May 3 1743, The signature of "Alex Torranc" appears. He was treasurer
of the Congregation.
Mar. 10 1761 (when book ends) Alex.r Torrance was still treasurer.
The Ironmonger's estate, whose lands covered the district where the Torrens
families resided, has a few Rent Rolls extant, chiefly 19th Century. In a paper
connected with a law suit about the Estate tenants names are given
p. 2 .....................................................................
1740 Protestant Householder's List was sent in my first letter.
Boveva Old Book. no Torrens appears in this record of the Presbyterian
Congregation of Boveva, except in a marriage Register (1761 - 1767). They are
really proclamations of Marriage, and the marriage itself is to be presumed, as
it is not stated.
"1761 March 8 Sam.l Haslet in con.n
Elizebeth Torrens in ye p.h of Bovidie"
Hazlet was a member of Boveva Congregation, while the bride was in Boveedy
Congregation. There was no Parish of Boveedy. The reference is to the parochial
district which was equivalent to the congregational area or district. See above
(p.1) where Sam. Torrence appears as elder with the minister of this
An old printed book of 1796 giving names of persons awarded premiums for
growing flax, the premiums being spinning wheels and looms.
Parish of Aghadowey - James Torrence (2 wheels)
Balteagh - John Torrance (1 wheel )
Banagher - James Torrance (1 wheel )
Tamlaghtfinlagen - John Torrance (1 wheel)
Rent roll of Ironmonger's Estate 1823
The townland of Drumbane, 350 acres, all mountain, was let to Mr. J. Torrens
for £17 per an. 40 years before the rent was £13.13.0
Drumstaple James Torrens 8 Acres
Claggan Thomas Torrens 13 acres
Mullahinch James Torrens 13 "
" Alex. Torrens 13 "
Rent roll (1814) of Mercer's Estate shows Wm. Torrens, with 11 acres in Carnroe.
MS. Records of Garvagh Presbyterian Church, which was attended by Torrens
families, begin as follows:-
Stipend account, beginning 1795
Stipend list beginning 1807
Baptisms from 1808
List bearing date 1829, and others
1796 Under Mayoghill, 1796 19th January occur seemingly as one family.
p. 3 .....................................................................
1796 Another family in same townland, Mayoghill, is given, but the names are
1796 Another family, Colleyman:- Another family (Colleyman)
Samuel Torrance Hugh Torrance
Mary Ann Torrance Ester Torrance
Alexander Torrance Alexander Torrance
Andrew Torrance Jean Torrance
James Wilson Torrance John Torrance
Thomas Torrance Cooleyman (Culnaman) and Moneydig
Margrat Torrance are in Desertoghill Parish
Samuel Torrance Mayoghill is in Aghadowey Parish.
1796 Another family, Colleyman:- But in Moneydig townland 1796:-
John Torrance Thos. Torrance
Elizabeth Torrance Margrat Torrance
Susanna Torrance Easter Torrance
John Torrance An 1818 visitation list gives in
Alex.r Torrance Mayoghill
Martha Torrance Hugh Torrance
Agnes, his wife
Garvagh 1st Presbyterian Church Graveyard.
1. William Torrans, who died 14th Aug. 1841, aged 24 years.
Saml. Torrans, 28th May. 1868 75
John Torrans 8th Aug. 1824 1 year
2. To memory of
Mary Ann Torans dau. to James Wilson Torans of Coolnaman who died Jan.
22, 1837, aged 23 years.
The mother Margaret Torans died 26th March 1867 aged 74 years.
The father James Wilson Torans died 27th October 1873 aged 92
Desertoghill Parish Graveyard, which, no doubt, has the remains of Culnamen and
Moneydig families of Torrens shows no monuments of them.
Interments in Garvagh 1st Church ground only begin in 19th century.
Desertoghill Episcopal Parish Register (which would have the Presbyterian
interments begin 1835 only. Earlier lost.
Same of Aghadowey began 1808.
Presbyterian Records of Aghadowey begin Baptismal 1855, Marriage 1845.
A few printed sources:-
Journal of the Association for Preservation of Memorials of Dead, Ireland, 10
vols. shows Rev. J. Torrens D.D. buried in Dublin.
p. 4 .....................................................................
Bolton's "Scotch Irish Pioneers", only Hugh Torrance of Aghadowey
Hannah's "Scotch Irish in America", only two Scotch references as
Register of Derry Parish Church, no Torrens before 1700.
Morrison's Windham, N.H. no Torrens.
Leslie's Armagh Diocese Clergy, only the Dungiven family.
Glasgow University Matriculation Album. 1727-1857, has:-
A.D. 1776. No. 3593
"Henry Torrens natus in Hybernia filius nates minimus Roberti
agricolae in comitatu Tyronne et Parochia Banacher."
Banagher Parish is in Co. Londonderry.
" Jacob Torrens filius unicus Samuelis Torrans agricolae in parochia
Ballykelly in comitatu Londonderry in Hibernia."
Ballykelly is not a parish, must mean Tamlaghtfinlagan parish.
A Rev. Robert Torrens was minister of Churchtown Presbyterian Congregation,
Tamlaght O'Crilly, Co. Londonderry for a long period from 1839. His two sons
are ministers of congregations now, Alfred in 2nd Ramelton, Co. Donegal, and
Fredk in Fannet, Co. Donegal.
By a record in the Royal Academical Institution I find the Rev. Robert, their
father, was from Culnamen. He entered the Institution in 1832, and got his
general certificate in 1836. Another Torrens, now an old man, recently retired
from the ministry, was born in Tamlaght which is not far from Garvagh.
Search in Public Record Office, Dublin.
Enclosed are results of general search in wills, land index, &c. I am getting a
few wills abstracted. All entries in land index for Co. Derry have been
searched. There is no index of usual kind (dictionary order).
Nocarah - I have now found this place, from which the letters are addressed
(see copies), it is an old denomination of a part of Culnamen.
"Belfast News Letter" has an advt. of 1762, April 5, from which I
abstract the foll. as it shows something of a description of Culnaman where
your ancestors were.
" Coolnaman in Desertoghill parish - part of estate of John Blair, Esq.
divided into 3 separate parts, commonly called Coolnaman, Knockheeragh, and
Drummen, containing in whole about 200 acres of land, arable, pasture, meadow
and turf bog - whole well watered - to be let. Said lands are very improveable
and are situated in heart of linen country, within 2 miles of Garvagh, two from
Kilrea, four from Ballymoney, and seven from Coleraine, all considerable market
towns. Proposals to said John Blair at Ballydevitt by 1st July. Highest
proposals given the preference by that time so as proposer may get his firing
for the winter.
So that Nocarah (Knockheeragh) is present Culnamen."
Page's Author: Richard Torrens
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