CASTLE-CAULFIELD, a village, in the parish of DONAGHMORE, barony of DUNGANNON, county of TYRONE, and province of ULSTER, 3 miles (W.) from Dungannon; containing 212 inhabitants. This town was founded by Sir Toby Caulfield, afterwards Lord Charlemont, to whom James I. granted the lands called Ballydonnell, or the town of O'Donnell, in 1610. Sir Toby, in 1614, began building a mansion-house in the Elizabethan style, which afterwards acquired the name of Castle-Caulfield, and around which he located 41 British families, and mustered 30 men at arms. The second Lord Charlemont added a large gatehouse with towers, and a keep or donjon. In Pynnar's Survey it is described as "the fairest house in all these parts;" it is now a stately ruin, the gables and clustered chimneys producing a fine effect. The village is situated in a fertile valley, on the road from Dungannon to Omagh, and consists of one small street containing about 50 houses; the inhabitants are generally engaged in agriculture and the weaving of linen; a daily penny post to Dungannon has been established. Limestone and coal are found in the neighbourhood; and fairs, held on the second Monday in every month, for the sale of live stock, are numerously attended. A court for the manor of Castle-Caulfield is held by the seneschal; and petty sessions are held every alternate Saturday. Besides Castle-Caulfield, the seat of the Earl of Charlemont, here are several elegant houses, enumerated in the article on Donaghmore, which see. The parish church is in this village, and was built in 1685: it is a large and handsome edifice, in the Grecian style of architecture, except the south windows, which are in the later English style, and were brought from the old church of Donaghmore, which was destroyed in the war of 1641.

A neat mural monument, in memory of the Rev. George Walker, was erected on the south side of the altar, by his widow, in 1703. This distinguished man, while residing here in 1688, raised a regiment of infantry at his own expense, to act against the adherents of James II., and proceeded to Londonderry, in the defence of which he had the principal share, and subsequently, on the death of Major Baker, became sole governor of the city. After the siege was raised, he resigned the command of the garrison, came to England, where he was most graciously received by their Majesties, and in Nov., 1689, received the thanks of the House of Commons, having just before published an account of the siege. A letter, written by Archbishop Tillotson, is extant, in which he says, " the king, besides his first bounty to Mr. Walker, hath made him bishop of Londonderry, that so he may receive the reward of that great service in the place where he did it." He returned to Ireland with King William, and having resolved to serve a campaign before he took possession of his bishoprick, was killed at the head of his regiment at the battle of the Boyne, on the 1st of July, 1690. In the village is a chapel belonging to the Seceding Synod, of the first class. Near the church is the male and female parochial school, capable of accommodating 300 children; it is endowed with two acres of land and £5 per annum from the rector, and was built in 1823 at an expense of £253, with apartments for the master and mistress. The ruins of the castle, and a very large and perfect fort near Parkanour, are the only vestiges of antiquity; but tradition points out the site of a friary, near the latter, although no remains are visible.

Search Topographical Dictionary of Ireland »