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A government census was taken of the all of Ireland in the years 1821~1831~1841~1851~1861~1871~1881~1891~1901 and 1911. Unfortunatly 1821~1831~1841 and 1851 were almost compleetly destroyed in 1922 in a fire at the P.R.O. (Public Record Office). Even worse the census records for the years 1861~1871~1881 and 1891 were completely destroyed earlier, by government order.
What this means is that the earliest surviving compleet census records are for 1901 and 1911. The original 1901 and 1911 Census can be consulted at the National Archives of Ireland. A microfilm copy of the 1901 census is available at the LDS Family History Library in Salt Lake City or at a LDS Family history Center.
Wicklow Census Substitutes
1641 ~ Book of Survey and Distribution. Available at the National Library of Ireland.
1669 ~ Hearth Money Roll. Available at the National Archives of Ireland.
1745 ~ Poll Book. Avalable at the Public Records Office Northern Ireland.
1746 ~ List Of Wicklow Ireland Noblemen. On Line At Ancestors At Rest.Com
1766 ~ Parishes of Drumkay, Dunganstown, Kilpoole, Rathdrum, Rathnew. Available at the Wicklow Heritage Centre.
1798 ~ Persons who suffered losses in the 1798 rebellion. Available at the National Library of Ireland.
1823,37 ~ Tithe Books. The Tithe Applotment books were compiled between 1823 and 1837 in order to determine the amount which occupiers of agricultural holdings should pay in tithes to the Church of Ireland. There is a manuscript book for almost every parish, giving the names of occupiers, the amount of land held, and the sums to be paid in tithes. There are copies in the National Archives of Ireland.
1842,48 ~ Emigrants list. Available at the National Library of Ireland.
1852,53 ~ The Primary Valuation (also known as Griffith's Valuation) was published between 1847 and 1864. There is a printed valuation book for each barony or poor law union, showing the names of occupiers of land and buildings, the names of persons from whom these were leased, and the amount and value of the property held. These records are now available on microfiche at the National Archives of Ireland.
The town of Fitzwilliam was named by the colonial governor, John Wentworth, in compliment to his kinsman, Earl Fitzwilliam of England and Ireland, and given its royal charter by George III in 1765. In stately phrase it is granted "by the advice of our trusty and well-beloved John Wentworth, Esq., Governor, and hereby declared to be a Town Corporate by the name of Fitzwilliam, and to have Continuance forever."
The town was organized by a group of men in Massachusetts who had bought the rights from the original holders of the Masonian Grants, and the region was known as Monadnock No.4. It was six miles square, and the land was laid out in lots of 100 acres each, those set aside for the meeting house and the minister's house being in the exact center. By the terms of the royal charter, the grantees were expected to build fifty houses, "each with one room at least 16 feet square," and within five years to build a meeting house and "to have constant preaching there." There were two other conditions in the charter. The lots were to be sold "to such Persons as would engage to settle and improve the same," and "All the White Pine Trees are Reserved for the Use of the Royal Navy."
But as early as 1762 the pioneering spirit of the age had brought the first settler. Benjamin Bigelow and his wife Elizabeth had made their perilous way from Lunenburg, Mass., into the wilderness which was Fitzwilliam, and on May 10, 1762, began the town's story with the birth of their baby, under the shelter of the oxcart which had brought them thither, and which, tipped up against a tree, was their first home.
It took determination and hardiness to come to Fitzwilliam in those days. Most of the pioneers were from the comparatively settled regions of central Massachusetts, and here was primeval forest. There were only two roads, one the military road, dating back to French and Indian war days, which came in from the south and crossed the town in a roughly diagonal line, and the other the "Great Road," along the easterly line of the town, now known as the Fullam Hill Road.
At first, the settlers came in slowly. In 1767, five years after the Bigelow family came, the total population was only ninety people. Elizabeth Bigelow used to say in her old age that for years she was the handsomest woman in town, because she was the only one. It was not until 1770 that there were enough people settled here for them "to provide Stuf," and set about building a meeting house. According to New England tradition, it was built on a hill. It was a plain, square building, with the burying ground adjacent. It must have stood where the present road now passes the burying ground, and no trace of it remains, though the ancient grave-stones of the men who built it, and the monument of its first minister, are still there. The first schoolhouse stood opposite, near the present school. The meeting house was the center of the town, not only geographically but in importance, the one place where the people could get together from their far-scattered clearings for worship, town meetings, and as Revolutionary days came, to have their war meetings.
The first inn was built by James Reed, the only one of the original proprietors to live here. It was the first framed building in town and was two stories high. It stood near the route of the old military road to the north, on what is now the Upper Troy Road. Most of the homes of the first settlers were built of logs, and of them no trace remains. The two oldest houses in the town today were both built in 177l. One, in the village, was built by Jonathan Locke, a notable example of its type, now the home of Mr. and Mrs. Francis C Massin; the other, on the Rindge Road, was built by Samuel Kendall, and is the home of Mr. and Mrs. Otis Rawding, and called "the most photographed house in town." Its side door is the one out of which Mrs. Kendall stepped and came face to face with a bear, but "she shook her apron at him and he went back into the woods."
By 1775 the population of the town had risen to 250 people. The houses were still scattered over a wide area, only a little of the land had been cleared and they had just established the town government; but with the outbreak of the Revolutionary War, patriotism rose above all other claims, and Arnold's expedition against Canada, Bunker Hill, Bennington, Saratoga and Ticonderoga are names in Fitzwilliam's history. Forty-three Revolutionary soldiers lie in the old burying ground on the hill.
By the beginning of the 19th century the town had sawmills, gristmills, tanneries, taverns, stores, twelve schools and a singing school. It had also the Rev. John Sabin, for forty years arbiter, and on occasion, autocrat. Of him, many stories survive. A visiting minister once asked him where the people got the stones for their miles of stone walls. Mr. Sabin said, "They get them off the surface of the ground." And the guest exclaimed, "Why, it doesn't look as if one had ever been picked up!"
Fitzwilliam was a busy place in those days. Five coach roads connected it with the outside world. While most of the men were farmers - it is an old story that on one occasion there were gathered on the Common 100 yoke of oxen - the women, besides spinning and weaving the materials for their clothes, braided palmleaf hats, a business so profitable that Mr. Sabin once commented drily, "The dress of the assemblies shows it." Later on, woodenware was manufactured in such quantities that fifty travelling salesmen were employed. At one time Fitzwilliam was known as "The blueberry town of the world," and in the season 100 bushels were shipped daily to Boston. The price was five cents a quart.
About the year 1840, the rocks of Fitzwilliam, which Mr. Sabin once said "were not very frightful when you were accustomed to them," began to prove valuable economically, and the granite industry which arose then became the important business of the town. Fitzwilliam was one of the three principal granite centers of the state. The building of the Cheshire Railroad, in 1848, provided transportation, and the industry reached its peak from l9l5 to 1918, when it had brought in nearly 400 new residents as workmen and their families.
With the years came the gradual changes of a New England town - from farming to many small business enterprises, town improvement, cultural societies and the growth and influence of the churches. Fitzwilliam did its part in each of the six wars of the period, with its quotas of men, the Women's Relief Corps, the Red Cross and Veterans' Societies. The mid 20th century brought new industries and many young families, changing the picture of the town. With this young element has also come a new phase, for an increasing number of people find Fitzwilliam an ideal retirement place. The Rev. Mr. Sabin had a phrase for it, "We have a pleasant village, and so it strikes travellers who pass through it."
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Archaeological sleuthing has also led to the discovery that wine was imported in barrels as well: silver fir does not grow in Denmark, yet well-linings of this wood have been found at Hedeby and Dorestad, the wood having originated as barrels filled with wines, then imported from the Rhine into Denmark (Hagen, p. 220; Roesdahl, p. 122). Accordingly, wine would have been reserved for the wealthy and powerful. This is illustrated in Ælfric's Colloquy, where after the novice has answered that he prefers to drink ale, the questioner asks him, "Does he not drink wine?" The novice answers, Ic ne eom swa spedig þæt ic mæge bicgean me win; ond win nys drenc cilda ne dysgra, ac ealdra ond wisra ("I am not so wealthy that I may buy myself wine; and wine is not the drink of children or fools, but of the old and wise").
The exact recipes and methods that Viking Age Scandinavians used to produce öl are unknown. However, some brewing experts think that certain surviving ale-brewing practices in rural western Norway may preserve Viking Age techniques:
In the remote rural region of Voss most of the farmers make their own beer. When a new brew is underway, the smoke and rich odours tell everyone in the neighborhood that beer is being made and the go to the farmhouse to help out and then sample the finished brew. Jackson went out with farmer Svein Rivenes to collect juniper branches. Rivenes sawed sufficient branches to fill the 700-litre [about 185 gallons] bath-shaped tank in his cabin that acts as both the hot liquor vessel and the brew kettle. He feels, just as the medieval monks recorded by Urion and Eyer felt about the hops in their bière, that the juniper branches, complete with berries, helped him achieve a better extract from his malt as well as warding off infections.
His water source - a stream tumbling down the hillside outside his cabin - has a double use. It is his brewing liquor and he also immerses sacks of barley in the stream where the grain starts to germinate. A neighbor has turned his garage into a kiln, powered by a domestic fan heater, and there barley is turned into malt. In the brewing process, when hot liquor has been added to the malt, the mash is filtered over more juniper branches to filter it. The berries give flavor to the wort - just as they do to gin and other distilled spirits - but Rivenes also adds hops when the wort is boiled. The yeast used in the Voss area has been handed down generation to generation and Rivenes thinks it may date back to Viking times. The farmer-brewers in Norseland start fermentation with a "totem stick" that carries yeast cells from one brew to the next.
The beer brewed by Svein Rivenes was, according to Michael Jackson, around nine or ten per cent alcohol and had a rich malt character, with a syrupy body, a pronounced juniper character and was clean and appetizing. Jackson brought a sample of the yeast back to Britain... The Viking yeast was classified as a traditional ale yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, but was different in several ways to a modern ale yeast. It had different taste characteristics. It was multi-strain whereas most modern ale yeasts are single or two-strain. Modern yeasts have been carefully cultured to attack different types of sugar in the wort and, where a beer is cask conditioned, to encourage a powerful secondary fermentation...
It is unlikely that a genuine Viking ale was brewed from pale malt: until the industrial revolution and commercial coal mining, malt was kilned over wood fires and was brown and often scorched and smoky in character, though the habit in Scandinavia of drying malt in saunas may have made it paler. (Protz, p. 25-26)
As well as juniper, Germans and Scandinavians were known to add a variety of herbal agents or gruits to their ales to produce bitterness or add other flavors, to disinfect and thus extend the "shelf life" of the product, and to add medicinal qualities to the drink in some cases (Protz, p. 20, La Pensée, pp.128-144). Hops was one such additive, being used in Viking Age Denmark and in tenth century Jorvik (modern York, England) and probably elsewhere in Scandinavia during the Viking Age (Hagen, pp. 210, 211; Roesdahl, p. 119). Hops, when boiled with the wort in the process of making ale, releases bitter acids, which both bitter the brew and add antibiotic properties that allow for better preservation of ale. Other herbal additives included alecost (Chrysanthemum balsamita), alehoof (also known as ground ivy, Glechoma hederacea), bog myrtle (also known as sweet gale, Myrica gale, especially used in Denmark, northern Germany and in England), horehound (Marrubium vulgare, called Berghopfen or "mountain hops" in Germany, where it was used as a hops substitute), yarrow (Achilea millefolium) and others (La Pensée, pp.128-144, Hagen, p. 212).
The drinking of ale was particularly important to several seasonal religious festivals, of which the Viking Scandinavians celebrated three: the first occurring after harvest, the second near midwinter, and the last at midsummer. These festivals continued to be celebrated after the introduction of Christianity, although under new names. Historical records show that ale consumption at these festivals, even in Christian times, was quite important: the Gulaþing Law required farmers in groups of at least three to brew ale to be consumed at obligatory ale-feasts on All Saints (November 1 - Winternights), Christmas (December 25 - Yule), and upon the feast of St. John the Baptist (June 24 - Midsummer). More ordinary festivities, celebrated even today, are so closely associated with beer that they are known as öl ("ale") and include Gravöl (a wake, or "funeral ale"), Barnöl (a christening, or "child-ale") and taklagsöl (a barn-raising, or "roofing-ale") (Nylén, p. 57).
In Hákonar saga Góða (The Saga of King Hákon the Good) in Heimskringla, it is quite evident that Hákon, who practiced his own Christianity in secret, was beginning through legislation to move the traditional holiday ale-feast as part of a campaign to eventually convert the country:
Hann setti það í lögum að hefja jólahald þann tíma sem kristnir menn og skyldi þá hver maður eiga mælis öl en gjalda fé ella og halda heilagt meðan öl ynnist.
[He had it established in the laws that the Yule celebration was to take place at the same time as is the custom with the Christians. And at that time everyone was to have ale for the celebration from a measure (Old Norse mál) of grain, or else pay fines, and had to keep the holidays while the ale lasted. (Heimskringla, Chapter 13)
Brewing was usually the work of women in medieval Iceland, and probably in the Viking Age throughout Scandinavia as well:
Requiring fire and the warmth of the kitchen, brewing was allowed even during the Christmas holiday. Traditionally, women have been associated with this work and it remained a female task throughout the medieval period. In one of the heroic sagas a king resolved the jealousy between his two wives by deciding to keep the one who presented him with the better beer on his return from war. As late as the end of the fourteenth century a laysister was superintendent of brewing in Vadstena, a Swedish monastery that accommodated men and women. Describing a brewing in honor of Bishop Páll, a vignette states specifically that the housewife was in charge. On important farms the physical work needed for large quantities may have demanded male help, as suggested from a brief glimpse of the farm at Stafaholt where the female housekeeper (húsfreyja), assisted by the male manager (ræðismaðr), replenished the stores of beer depleted by the visit of fourteen unexpected guests. Consumed at the alþingi, beer was commonly brewed on the spot, but there the quantities demanded and the scarcity of women made it a male task. Mentioned rarely in the sagas, brewing was a difficult process and occasionally required divine assistance mediated through miracles credited to Icelandic bishops (Jochens, p. 127).
Perhaps the most expensive and least available fermented beverage of the Viking Age was wine. Almost no grape wines were produced in Scandinavia, and only a very small amount of fruit wines, which by the Middle Ages was exclusively reserved for sacramental use. Birch-sap might also have been used to make limited quantities of wine (Hagen, p. 229). Instead, grape wine was exported from the Rhineland, which may have used the market towns of Hedeby and Dorestad as the export outlets for wine (Hagen, p. 220; Roesdahl, p. 120). Remains of wine amphoræ have been found at Dorestad and at Jorvik: these amphoræ varied in size from 14-24" tall and 12.5-20" in diameter (Hagen, p. 220).
The staple grain cultivated during the Viking Age and medieval period in Scandinavia was barley, and it may have been the only grain grown in Iceland up through the point at which the mini-Ice Age of the 14th century made it impossible to grow grain in Iceland at all. Most of the barley was used to brew ale, which was the staple beverage of all classes. Even children drank ale daily, especially in urban areas. (Skaarup, p. 134). The Old English didactic work Ælfric's Colloquy shows just how ale was regarded in early Northern Europe: when the novice is asked what he drinks, he replies, Ealu gif ic hæbbe, oþþe wæter gif ic næbbe ealu ("Ale if I have it, water if I have no ale").
Early Northern Europeans were quite familiar with alcoholic beverages made from the fermentation of grain. In 77 A.D., the Roman encyclopaedist Gaius Plinius Secundus (Pliny the Elder) recorded in his Historia Naturalis that beer was known to the various tribes of Northern Europe under many different names.
It should be noted that while the modern words "beer" and "ale" are today almost interchangeable, there is good evidence that shows that the two drinks were very different in early Northern Europe. It is clear from Old English and Old Norse sources that ale (Old English ealu, Old Norse öl) was produced from malted grain. However, literary analysis shows that Old English beor and Old Norse björr are terms used for sweet alcoholic beverages. Until the last ten years or so, philologists thought that beor and björr were derived from the word for barley, and it is only recently that it was realized that the term almost certainly referred to cider (whether from apples or pears) during the Viking Age (Hagen pp. 205-206; Roesdahl, p. 120). English translations of the sagas will translate both öl and björr interchangeably as beer or ale, and so are not a good guide to the actual terminology being used in the original Old Norse text. To sow further confusion, in the Eddaic poem Alvíssmál verses 34 and 35, a variety of Old Norse terms related to fermented beverages appear and are implied to be synonyms:
These are the words of the great god Óðinn, cautioning against drunkenness and unrestrained drinking. And yet the drinking of alcoholic beverages was a prominent feature of Scandinavian life in the Viking Age.
Unfortunately, while there are many passing references in Old Norse literature and occasional bits of evidence in the archaeological record, there is far from a complete picture of Viking Age brewing, vintning, and drinking customs. In the course of this article, evidence from several Germanic cultures will be presented to help fill out the evidence and provide a more complete view of this topic. Although the culture of other Germanic peoples was not exactly like that of the Norse, many similarities exist. In the case of drinking and rituals associated with drinking, the Old English materials seem to present the best detailed view of this activity, which further enlightens the materials surviving from Norse culture.
Many pieces of related evidence survive, even from the earliest records of the Germanic peoples. There are significant similarities that suggest the fundamental structure of drinking as a formal ritual activity was established in the early Germanic tribes before the Migration Age split the Germanic peoples into their familiar nations of the modern day.
Drinking and drinking customs among the Germanic tribes were recorded by Romans such as P. Cornelius Tacitus in his Germania:
"The examination of skeletons from different localities in Scandinavia reveals that the average height of the Vikings was a little less than that of today: men were about 5 ft 7-3/4 in. tall and women 5 ft 2-1/2 in. The most extensive recent anthropological study was carried out in Denmark, but the situation must have been similar elsewhere. Skeletons of people as tall as 6 ft 1/2 in. have been found, and those in richly furnished Viking graves - belonging to high- ranking people - were on average considerably taller than those in the more ordinary graves, undoubtedly because of better living conditions. A double grave on Langeland in Denmark contained two adult males, typically, the smaller one had been decapitated, and had probably had his hands tied behind his back, while the other was interred with his spear in the normal fashion - obviously a case of a slave (measuring 5 ft 7-1/4 in.) who had to accompany his master (5 ft 9-3/4 in.) in death. However, the skeleton found in Jelling church, thought to be that of King Gorm of Denmark (later known as Gorm the Old), was only of average height. This man was 5 ft 7-3/4 in. tall, with heavy, robust features, but not heavily built."
The Vikings were very similar to most of European people in terms of their life and the way they lived. When the Vikings were at its peak, men had to protect his king or local chieftain in order for him to 'deserve' his lands.
Fortunately for the Vikings, they very seldom had any attacks directly into their lands. Nevertheless, the strong weather made them very skeptic about their faith and thus; they sought to conquer new land.
Viking women had to work the land, milk the cows and prepare clothing for the rest of the family. Females could not take any roles in political affairs and were restricted to work at home and take care of the children.
The children, on the other hand, would not study and they would help their mothers with the house labors including farming. When they were very young, they would stay inside mostly because most parents prevented them from going outside because of the weather (unless it was warm, of course).
Children learnt History from stories and to become an adult, a child had to be over 16 years of age and sometimes when he reached the age, his family would take him for a ceremony and have a celebration while thanking the gods.
Like during the Viking times was very hard mainly because of the frozen weather which would sometimes render farming useless and subsequently kill many farm animals including cows.
Vikings loved to wear jewelry. Jewelry was worn mostly by the rich, but in the case of the Vikings, even the poor could seldom afford to have their own - more likely after a battle when it was taken from the defeated army.
Women used to wear head scarfs for the cold since the weather is terrible most of the year in Scandinavia. Men would very frequently wear a Fur Cloak on their back to give them additional protection against the cold.
Both men and women would use leather shoes which were both good against the cold and easy to produce. It was common for Vikings to wear animal skin without any preparation or washing due to the need of being warm. Gloves were used when possible since they were scarce and hard to produce. Subsequently, Vikings would sometimes fight each other for clothes as they were very expensive.
Leather belts were also very common mainly for warriors who would employ them both to prevent snow from contacting their body and as a place to hang their swords or whatever they pleased.