Saturday, June 9, 2007

History of Killymoon

VON STIEGLITZ, FREDERICK LEWIS (1803-1866), pastoralist, was born on 13 October 1803 in Ireland, the eldest son of Baron Heinrich Ludwig von Stieglitz and Charlotte, née Atkinson, and grandson of Christian Ludwig von Stieglitz who had been created a baron of the Holy Roman Empire in 1765.

In 1802 the family moved from Pilsen, Bavaria, to a property known as Lewis Hill in Ireland and after nine years to Cookstown, County Tyrone. When the baron's death in 1824 left the family of six sons and two daughters poorly provided for, they decided to emigrate to Van Diemen's Land. Frederick Lewis, Francis Walter and Robert William von Stieglitz arrived at Hobart Town in the Lion on 7 August 1829.

Frederick, an active and intelligent young man in the lieutenant-governor's opinion, received 2000 acres (809 ha), which he took up near Fingal and named Killymoon. In 1830 he married Catherine Christiana McNally, who owned an inn at Kempton*. He bought a further 3000 acres (1214 ha) near Fingal and in the next decade built Killymoon House in stone in the style of Killymoon Castle, County Tyrone.

Killymoon Castle, Cookstown - County Tyrone

In 1841 he was appointed a justice of the peace and in 1846 became a nominee in the Legislative Council on the resignation of the Patriotic Six. For some years he was a member of the Avoca Road Trust and in 1856 was elected to represent Fingal in the first elective assembly. After his wife's death in 1857 he sold Killymoon to Thomas Ransom, his stepson, returned to Ireland, assumed the title of baron, and became a justice of the peace for the Counties of Armagh and Down. In 1859 he married Hester Anna, the daughter of George Blacker and Anne, née Sloane. He died without issue on 14 May 1866.

Killymoon remained in the Ransom family ownership until early 1990's, although sub divided in to several properties.

The house is reputed to have been constructed by the builders of 'Clarendon'. Special features of the building include a two storey three sided bay with portico, projecting end bays, unique central stair-hall and raised terrace. It is complemented by a unique coach house and fine stables and has a powerful setting in the landscape. The building is essential to the heritage of Tasmania.

*RANSOM, THOMAS (1759-1829), boat builder and publican, was convicted at Middlesex England, on 9 September 1789 and sentenced to transportation for life. Ransom moved to Green Ponds where he had been granted 400 acres (162 ha) in 1817. He spent some £1500 improving this property and in building the Royal Oak Inn. Ransom died at his inn on 6 February 1829 and was buried at Green Ponds. His property was bequeathed to his friend, Catherine Christiana McNally, who married Frederick von Stieglitz on 22 January 1830 and died in 1857 at Killymoon.


stieglitz said...

Dear Rhodes'
gratulate to your fine blog. Here some Supplements: The father from F.L.v.St. Henry Lewis came 1802 from Saxony, Leipzig to Lewis Hill Co.Armagh. Pilsen is the home of his ancestor, who had to flee from Bohemia to Saxony in the 30years war. Interesting: his yr. brother Francis Walter married Anne Ransom, adopt.daughter of Thomas Amos a. Catherine McNally.
B.W. Leo von Stieglitz, Tübingen

David Clement said...

I live at St Marys, close to Killymoon.For the past 20 years, Catherine Christina NcNally has been my ongoing ,but not full time, local history interest, as her story encapsulates so much of early colonial history. I believe that Anne Ransom may in fact have been the adopted daughter of Catherine and Thomas Ransom, but the natural daughter c 1819 of Thomas Amos , solicitor of Sydney, and Ann Cummings, the absconding wife of Captain Cummings of Port Dalrymple. Can you elaborate on the suggestion that Catherine was in fact her mother. Amos died in Sydney before Anne was born and may even have been unaware of the result of his visit to Hobart Jan-March 1819. Also I have been searching for Catherine's origins for all these years- any information ,however slight, you may have on her before 1819 would be very much appreciated.

David Clement

Carol said...

Hi Will, I was very impressed by your little red dachshund - having one myself, called Miranda, and another black and tan, called Rupert - I'm besotted by both.

I'm also very interested to read your information on Killymoon, the gardens and the Von Stieglitz history. I'm researching that family for an exhibition we will be having at the NMA in 2013. I would really like to be able to email you, and perhaps visit during a trip to Tasmania that I will shortly be making. Hope we can be in contact, Best, carol

Jim Haas said...

Hi Will,
Well done on your blog. "Killymoon" and, indeed Frederick von Stieglitz is an important part of the history of the Fingal Valley.
I am a member of the St Patricks Head & Esk Valley Historical Society Inc. and we are dedicated to researching, preserving and teaching the history of the Fingal Valley. We always welcome information from people like yourself who wants to share what they know about the history of our little part of the world.
You may like to have a look at out website (
If you would like to submit an article on "Killymoon" I would be happy to ad it to the site.
My email is
Keep up the good work!!

Cheers, Jim Haas

Patricia said...

Hullo Will

I have found your blog so interesting, particularly as I am a great great granddaughter of Thomas Ransom the convict.
We believe that Killymoon was built with Catherine McNallys money, left to her when Thomas died at Green Ponds. And Thomas the son paid a large amount of money (33,000 pounds I believe) when he bought Killymoon. We have letters between he and Frederick referring to how much Thomas needed to pay when agitating sheep on Killymoon. Frederick did a fine job building that home.
I live in Sydney but when in Tasmania, stop at the gate for yet another photo, and my children have just been to the Cullenswood cemetery to see the family graves.
I see these past blogs are from some years ago, so hope,this reaches you.
Best wishes Barbara Spooner
May 15 2017

traci said...

Hi all,

interesting stuff. I'd love to find out more and was hoping someone could point me in the right direction. I am a Genders. My grandmother Constance Crisp was raised at Lewis Hill and one or both of her parents lived at Killymoon. My father Neil Genders went there when he was young and Killymoon still had a moat around it at that time. The moat was eventually filled in as the water was seeping through the earth and affecting the foundations.

Constance married Geoffrey Genders and moved to Glenwood in Relbia (where my father was raised and then raised us there as well)

I'm new to this research so would appreciate any advice on where to head!



Unknown said...

Hi, i am not so fit in English, sorry. What i read is, that Frederick vS selled Killymonn to Th. Ransom, is that right? Thanks, Leo