These are the surnames of the leading septs (clans) of Laois who, under sentence of death if they returned to their home county, were transplanted in the 1600s as tenant farmers to the estate of Patrick Crosbie, who had come to own much of North Kerry.
Written by Michael Christopher Keane, a native of Tarbert in Co Kerry and retired lecturer from University College Cork, From Laois to Kerry is presented in two parts. Part I explores the origins of these Laois septs and their transplantation to Tarbert and its surroundings, and traces the strong surname presence of their descendants in Kerry on a century by century basis down to the present day.
Part II concentrates on the remarkable lives of Patrick Crosbie and his son Sir Pierce Crosbie. The father was a leading figure in Irish history during the plantation period, posing as an English imposter while in reality being a MacCrossan, bards to the O’Moores of Laois. His son was landlord to the septs in Kerry, led regiments in a number of wars and was both Cupholder and Gentleman of the Kings’ Bedchamber to both King James I and Charles I. He lost and then regained his estates and was closely associated with a notorious scandal in which his stepson the Earl of Castlehaven was executed for sexual depravity.
The 130-page softback costs €20 and is available at kennys.ie, omahonys.ie or direct from the author – email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.