The House that Robert Built
The story of Lissan House begins with an adventurous and enterprising young barrister, Thomas Staples, born at Yate Court near Bristol. He left London in around 1610 and made his way to Ireland, here to make a new life for himself. He built the first Staples home at Lissan on the site of an even more ancient house in around 1620, using timber, stone and handmade bricks. He set up an ironworks, felling great oaks for charcoal to smelt the ore.
In recognition of his industry and effort to civilise the local population, King Charles I created him 1st Baronet of Lissan and Faughanvale in 1628. His descendants lived here through times of poverty and prosperity, conflict and peace over four centuries. In about 1660, Thomas’ youngest son Robert, the 4th Baronet, constructed much of the house which we see today, though it has been much adapted, refashioned and embellished by subsequent generations. Over the centuries, the Staples family grew and flourished as well, contributing significantly to the local community, the Church, the law, business and to the Crown.
Unlike many Irish estates, Lissan survived the ravages of 19th and 20th century decline and, bearing witness to the trials and triumphs of 400 years of human endeavour, it now enters a new era at the heart the community.
It is a unique and fascinating place.