In December 2015 The Presbyterian Historical Society published a booklet entitled Anne Jane Carlile 1775-1864 Temperance Pioneer. The booklet was officially launched at a talk on the life of Anne Jane Carlile and the Band of Hope Movement in First Monaghan Presbyterian Church Hall on April 20th 2016.
Available from the Presbyterian Historical Society or from the author, Leslie McKeague. Priced at £3 (sterling) or €4 (Euro). http://www.presbyterianhistoryireland.com/2016/01/anne-jane-carlile-new-phsi-publication/
The Ulster History unveiled a Blue Plaque on Trinity Church on Friday May 8th 2015. A Blue Plaque was unveiled at Trinity Church Bailieborough by the Ulster History Circle in honour of Anne Jane Carlile, Temperance Pioneer. The unveiling was performed by Heather Humphreys Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. The plaque was funded by the Ulster-Scots Agency.
Above Images: Left: Heather Humphreys TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht unveils the Blue Plaque.
Centre Left: Blue Plaque image
Centre Right: Attending the Blue Plaque unveiling, L/r Rev. David Nesbitt; Chris Spurr, chairman of the Ulster History Circle; Minister Heather Humphreys; Derek Rainey, Ulster-Scots Agency and Leslie McKeague.
Right: Ulster History Circle members with Minister Humphreys, L/r: Mairead Ferguson, Chris Spurr, Leslie McKeague and Alan Boyd.
Some details about Anne Jane’s Carlile’s life: Anne Jane Carlile – A Pioneer of Temperance (1775-1864) Anne Jane Hamill was born in 1775, her father David Hamill, was a linen merchant, he lived in Rooskey House, near Monaghan town. The Hamill’s originated in France and as Huguenot refugees, having settled in Ulster they joined the Presbyterian Church. In 1800 Anne Jane married the Revd Francis Carlile who was described as a poor Presbyterian Minister. He was son of Francis Carlile a small land owner from the townland of Tirnaneill near Monaghan town. The Carlile’s originated in the north of England, close to the Scottish border. Anne Jane’s husband began his ministry to the joint congregations of Corraneary and Second Bailieborough, (Urcher) Co. Cavan, in 1795. The happiness of their marriage lasted but a mere eleven years, when on February 1st 1811 the Revd Francis Carlile after a short illness passed away. He was buried in Urcher graveyard close to the wall of his church. One son and six daughters were born during their marriage, but now Anne Jane was alone to provide for her seven young children. Many tragedies were to follow, their seventh child who was born shortly after the death of her father, died in infancy. Her second child Martha, aged 8, died in June 1812 and in February 1814 her eldest child Mary, died aged 11. It is quite evident that despite all her trials and hardships Anne Jane had a deep faith and rather than be angry with God for her children’s deaths she thanking Him for their time on earth. It was not long before Anne Jane departed from Bailieborough with the remainder of her family and settled in Londonderry. Even before Anne Jane left Bailieborough she was taking an interest, and supporting foreign missions. In 1822 the Carlile’s were on the move again, this time to Dublin where Anne Jane became involved in prison reform, visiting prisoners and making representations on their behalf to improve their welfare. She became a member of the Female Gaol Committee and visited all the gaols in Dublin. This was prior to Elizabeth Fry’s visit to Ireland in 1827 when she accessed the state of asylums and prisons. Anne Jane’s only son Francis, eighteen, while on a day out to Powerscourt Waterfall slipped on the wet surface of the rock at the top of the cliff, he plunged to his death on the rocks below. Anne Jane bore the loss with her usual fortitude, she believed that God would not inflict this injustice on her willingly, she believed he had rescued Francis, ‘‘from an evil to come’’. She devoted the share of her estate that would have been his to maintaining a missionary teacher in India for thirty years. After the tragic death of her son, Anne Jane became involved in temperance work. From her prison visits she realised just how many inmates were there because of the misuse of alcohol. In 1830 she formed a temperance society in Poolbeg Street in Dublin, this was an area frequented by sailors. The misuse of drink was not confined to cities, some years later while visiting her sister Catherine Jamison in Cootehill she set up a temperance society there. As Anne Jane stated: ‘‘men of rather respectable class meet in the evenings to have a ‘social glass’, which ‘glass’ generally increased to half a dozen’’. Some years later in Dublin’s Newgrange Prison she met some of the most wretched women who were all there due to their drinking of whiskey. She invited them to attend her temperance meetings in Poolbeg Street upon their release. One of them replied: ‘‘Thrue for you ma’am the whiskey brought us here, but you can afford to drink your wine and we cannot’’. After this encounter Anne Jane signed a teetotal pledge. Even beyond her eightieth year she made many trips to the North of Ireland, Scotland and England, promoting the temperance movement. As well as Dublin, and Belfast she addressed prisoners in Glasgow and Edinburgh goals. The south of Ireland she left to the crusade of the Irish teetotalist reformer Father Mathew, with whom she was on excellent terms.
Anne Jane was gifted at telling stories to children; holding a large room full’s attention as she related her stories, she believed it was important to warn them of the dangers of drink at an early age. She is best remembered as a co-founder of the Band of Hope, in Leeds, U.K., in July 1847. At a large crowd of boys and girls in South Parade Chapel, organised by Rev. Jabez Tunnicliff, he asked “what name shall we give this society”, and she exclaimed “they’re a band of hope”, and so Band of Hope was established. The organisation still exists today and is known as Hope U.K. She lived the latter years of her life with her daughter in Dublin. Physically active in her old age she took a cold bath every morning, always wore handsome black dresses, and white lace caps trimmed with satin. Anne Jane Carlile died on March 14th 1864 aged 89 years, some 53 years after the death of her husband, the Revd Francis Carlile. She is buried in Mount Jerome Cemetery, Harold’s Cross, Dublin. Her headstone inscription reads: In Memory of Anne Jane Carlile, who with Rev. Jabel Tunnicliffe founder, of the Band of Hope in the year 1847, in the city of Leeds. Widow of The Rev. Francis Carlile, Presbyterian Minister of Bailieborough and Coronary, Died 14th March 1864 Aged 89. “They Rest From Their Labours & Their Works” A canvas portrait of Anne Jane Carlile hangs in Trinity Presbyterian Church Hall, Bailieborough, Co. Cavan.
Bibliography: Anne Jane Carlile, A Temperance Pioneer, by Frederick Sherlock (1897). The Children of Edmondstown Park – Memoirs of an Irish Family by Denis Hayes Crofton (1980)
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