Marble fireplace at Lissaroon

Lissaroon, the Oldest Fanning Property and Homestead

Lissaroon Co Tipperary Ireland
Lissaroon on the day we visited April 2012

Another highlight of my stay in Co Tipperary was meeting Fanning relatives and  visiting Lissaroon. We were taken there by my fourth cousin Delia, her husband Timmy and son Willie. We were also shown around Ballycahill Cemetery and Church, Loughmore Cemetery and various other related Fanning sites around Thurles as well as calling in on the Lisdonowley Fanning family.

There are photos of Lissaroon and more information and stories in the post “Lisaroon the Home of William and Sarah Fannin These are some photos of the back of Lissaroon which I don’t think I have already posted.

Lissaroon Co Tipperary Ireland (3)

Lissaroon is a townland just north of Thurles in Co Tipperary North. This property is the earliest Fanning site I have been able to find. It was I have been told settled by Fannins in 1741. I don’t as yet know where they moved from. I was told they came from France which may mean Normandy and that they were an Anglo-Norman family.

There are records of William Fannin living there and he is buried in Ballycahill Cemetery. His birth date about 1731. His wife Sarah Ryan is also buried there as are many other member of their family. But William and Sarah are the earliest Fanning ancestors. Lissaroon was their home and property. They rented from the Trant Family of Dovea. Eventually with changes in the Land Acts the Fanning family came to own Lissaroon as freehold land. They were well off and prospered in the region. My cousins told me that all the other Fannings in the area can trace their roots to William and Sarah Fannin.

What struck me was the refinement in design of the fittings in the house dilapidated as it is. I was surprised as I expected a practical farmer’s house. The inside of the house is falling down which is a shame. But there is an elegant corner cupboard and original wooden table and chairs as well as the remains of a beautiful coloured marble fireplace. On the walls there are remanants of flowerey wallpaper. Some of the other walls were brightly painted. A lot of evidence of a feminine influence.

Lissaroon Wallpaper Co Tipperary Ireland (2)
Detail of remaining wallpaper at Lissaroon Homestead Co Tipperary Ireland
Lissaroon Co Tipperary Ireland Detail of Marble Mantlepiece (2)
Detail of Marble Mantelpiece Lissaroon Co Tipperary Ireland

The house itself apparently had a portico with coloured glass like that at Dovea House.

Dovea House Co Tipperary Ireland
Portico of Dovea House, The Big House, owned by the Trant Family who the Fanning family would have paid rent to

I have seen quite a few photos of Lissaroon but actually being there was very different. It is quite close to the road and used for grazing cattle. No one has lived there since 1926. Unfortunately it is deteriorating.

It was fascinating hearing about the place from Willie who used to visit as a child. He said it was origianlly thatched and surrounded by a beautiful garden of fruit trees and flowers. He can remember picking the flowers. The trees had to be cut down as they had become dangerous.

Lissaroon Interior Original Chair Co Tipperary Ireland
Chair at Lissaroon. Note wallpapered or painted wall behind
Lissaroon Inside Co Tipperary Ireland
Interior with Corner Cupboard Lissaroon

A family called Meehan rented Lissaroon for a number of years. They wanted to get public housing and could only be eligible if their present dwelling was condemned. So they, much to the horror of the Fannings, had Lissaroon condemned. It took a lot of calling in of favours to have it reinstated and not pulled down.

3 thoughts on “Lissaroon, the Oldest Fanning Property and Homestead”

  1. I believe the Fannings go back much farther than the mid eighteenth century in Tipperary and the surrounding areas. I am a descendant of Edmund Fanning and Ellen Butler Fanning, who came to Stonington, Connecticut, in 1653. There is a two-volume genealogy of the Fanning family that has as a preface a deeply researched history by Walter Brooks, a Fanning descendant. He found some records going back to the twelfth century. One Fanning, Dominicus, was mayor of Limerick and was beheaded by Cromwell. He was considered for sainthood by Pope Leo (XII? I forget the number) but rejected because it wasn’t clear if he was executed for religious or political reasons. It’s an amazing history.

    1. I have read Brooke’s History of the Fanning family and I also found it fascinating.
      The Fannings were Anglo Normans so originally from Normandy.

      My direct ancestors apparently came to Lisaroon in Co Tipperary about 1741. But from where I have yet to discover. They may have come across from nearby Limerick or from Ballingarry in Co Tipperary. I have not come across any Fannings named Dominick which makes me suspect that my branch came up from Ballingarry. But I have no proof.

      My brother took the DNA test and we are related to Edmund Fanning of Connecticut as well. But as my ancestors lived in Ireland we have to be descendants of a related family who stayed there. If that makes sense.

      There are quite a few mentions of Fannings in medieval times in Co Tipperary and neighbouring counties but no records until, at the earliest 1800, so a gap in between.

  2. I am also a descendant of Edmund Fanning, my father is Floyd William Fanning III. I have read parts of the Fanning book and I love reading all the way back to 1100 AD. My children are also enjoying the history lesson.

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