Re: St. Mary-- LA TOUCHE / Catnott / Francis / Lovelock / Pink / Reid
In the early 19th Century, Robert La Touche (d. 1844) and his business partner, Patrick Marcus Lynch (1785-1864), were the joint-owners of both Konigsberg and Cape Clear Estates in St. Mary, Jamaica. These gentlemen were both absentee proprietors then living in Ireland. The Lynch family had originally settled in Jamaica in 1726 and founded Belfield Estate in St. Mary, where several 18th Century tombs of the Lynch family can still be seen. The La Touche family were originally French Huguenots who had fled France and settled in Ireland in 1690, where they established a Banking dynasty in Dublin. La Touche Bank was to make the La Touche family one of the wealthiest in Ireland and David La Touche III (1729-1810)later became the first Governor of the Bank of Ireland. The partnership of Lynch and La Touche, West Indian Merchants in Dublin, continued to own Cape Clear Estate until the 1830s, when it passed into the possession of Sir Edward Hyde East(1764-1847). Sir Edward had a legal claim on the plantation through his sister, Amie Ann East, who in 1789 had married Patrick Lynch II (1760-1817) of Belfield and Cape Clear Estates, St. Mary. After a long drawn-out lawsuit in the Court of Chancery he finally inherited Cape Clear Estate and the plantation remained in the possession of the East family until they eventually sold it to Sir John Pringle in 1880. The 18th Century Cape Clear Great House is still standing, although it was later enlarged and remodelled by Sir John Pringle between 1903 and 1906. It is now owned by the Government of Jamaica and operated as a Reform School for Girls.