The Rundles of Drogheda







The Rundle Family coat of Arms
The Motto "Tenax Propositi" meaning  
   "Firm of Purpose".
















On this page we tell the stories of The Rundle Family at Clogherhead near Drogheda, County Louth. On other pages on this site you will find the story of Edmund Rundle and his wife Eliza Jane Martin ( see links at the bottom of this page)
Now we come to their children. There were eleven children in the family, but so far, we have a sketchy story of some, and fuller stories of others.

We start with two of the Rundle boys who gained international fame in 1885 and became the talking point at Ireland's firesides as a result of an escapade that almost cost them their lives. 
In the summer of that year three of the Rundle boys aged 8, 11 and 13 went to the beach at Clogherhead (known locally as "Clogher") on a monday evening in August and spotted a punt (a type of row-boat). Two of them, Joseph and Edmund decided to become sailors like their father, Edmund Snr.,  and pushed the boat out to the water and jumped in. The youngest boy didn't join them. 
However, weather conditions at the time caused this light vessel to drift to sea outside of their control and they lost an oar. The youngest brother went back home and told the story of what had taken place, and very quickly a search party put to sea in search of the young navigators. The search lasted only a short while because darkness fell and windy conditions prevailed. It was presumed that the boys were drowned because they could not be seen by seasoned fishermen-sailors, one of whom had a brass extendable telescope.
One can only speculate about the sorrow in the Rundle household on that night but it must have been a strained, sleepless night.
On the next day, the search continued and resumed on the wednesday until weather conditions forced an end to to navigations and any hopes of finding the boys alive.

On that same day a telegram arrived in the Rundle household saying that the two Rundle boys had been rescued alive between 12 midnight and 1 a.m. on tuesday by a Belfast Steamship "Cloch" which will shortly put in to Waterford port.
Here is a report in a newspaper of the dramatic rescue:

Waterford, Wednesday

"On arrival of the Clyde Shipping Company’s steamship Cloch from Belfast, Captain Tate reported that on the previous day, between twelve and one o’clock while twenty miles east of Clogher Head, off the east coast, he observed at a distance a small boat, and by the aid of his glass he saw that it contained something like a form of a man. The sea was running heavy at the time, but he bore down in its direction. On approaching the boat he saw that it contained two little lads who were lying in it clasped tightly in each other’s arms either asleep or dead. He at once had one of his boats lowered and the lads conveyed on board his vessel. So insensible were they that it was some time before they recovered consciousness. When they did he interrogated them, and they stated that their names were Joseph and Edmund Rundle; that their father was a coastguardsman, residing at Clogher Head, off Drogheda, that on Monday evening they were playing in a punt, in which there was one oar, and that it was drifted out by the tide. They screamed for help, but the boat kept drifting out into the Channel. AT nightfall it was blowing very hard, and their little boat was knocked about by the tide like a cork. It then commenced to rain heavily, and fearing that one of them might be washed away, they resolved to clasp each other tightly and lie in the bottom of the boat. The sea sprayed kept rushing in on them until they were drenched to the skin, but they still lay tightly clutching each other’s arms, and so they were tossed about until, wet and cold, and fatigued from exhaustion, they fell asleep, and in that state Captain Tate found them as described. He at once had restoratives administered, and this morning they were so far recovered that he was able to hand them over to Mr. Jacob, agent at Waterford for the Shipwrecked Mariner’s Society. Captain Tate states that Monday night was a dirty night at sea, a strong wind, equally, and heavy rain, and to him seems miraculous how the frail boat in which they were might escape from being capsized by the fury of the storm. The brave little chaps this morning were cheerful, and told their stormy adventure to Mr. Jacob in a manner suggestive of how little they seemed to realize the wonderful escape they had. The fact of their resolving to die in each other’s arms, when it became known in the city, made them the object of the greatest curiosity, and all morning Mr. Jacob’s premises were visited by hundred anxious to get a glance at and hold converse with the brave little fellows".




Three of the four  "Flowers"

The four Rundle daughters were Louisa, Annie, Margaret and Eliza Junior. They were, by all accounts, glamourous, lively and ebullient young ladies. They were know better by the pseudonyms as "The Four Flowers of Clogherhead" because of their glamour and each had an alternative name (a Rundle trait). They were respectively known as "Violet", "Daisy", "Rose" and "Lily". They were very talented in dressmaking and millnery (hatmaking) which they learned from their mother who had great skills with needle and thread.



            Annie,      Margaret and     Louisa Rundle

Louisa "Violet" Rundle was born in Clogherhead, Drogheda on the 21st. March 1885. She left Ireland in 1913 and headed off to Canada. Seemingly, on the way there, she met a man called Harry Williams and they fell in love and got married on the 14th. October 1913. On sept. 14th. 1915 she gave birth to twin boys, Edmund James, and Harry (who was popularly known as "Marty". Could this have a connection to his Grandmother's maiden name?).
A terrible tragedy struck the new young family. Louisa got an infection in her leg after the births and died at the young age of 30, on 7th. October less than a month after the birth of her sons. This family story takes a most unusual turn here. 
Annie "Daisy" Rundle who was born (Annie Pauline Rundle) on 1st. March, 1887 decided to emigrate to Canada to help look after her sister's children. She encountered some difficulties in getting permission to travel as there were severe travel restrictions in place during the war, and as it was 1916, there was serious political unrest in Ireland as an insurrection was taking place. Eventually she got to Canada (at the age of 28) and some time later, she too, married Harry Williams on 16th. January, 1919.  This marriage also produced two more children, daughters, Dorothy and Olga.


Harry Williams


Harry Williams (pictured left) was born in Hampstead, Middlesex, England on 30th May, 1882. He died on 3rd. August 1962, Annie (Daisy) lived on until 1970, Olga (Johnston) died in 1980. Eddie Williams passed away in February 10th. 2006, exactly 100 years after his Grandmother Eliza Rundle. Marty Williams is living in Outlook, Canada.

                               Annie  "Daisy"  Rundle






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