Pdf Rev. Dubourdieu, John. Statistical Survey Of The County Of Antrim, With Observations On The Means Of Imrpovements; Drawn Up For The Consideration, And By The Direction Of The Dublin Society. Dublin: Graisberry and Campbell, 1812
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Statistical Survey Of The County Of Antrim by Rev. John DuBourdieu (1755-1839) was published in 1812 and is one of a series of surveys of Irish counties in the early 19th century on behalf of the Dublin Society (later the Royal Dublin Society). The survey describes the geography, topography, agriculture, industry, religion, language, living conditions, system of government and economy of County Antrim .

After the defeat of the Gaelic Irish at Kinsale in 1602, the Earls of Tyrconnell and Tyrone and their followers fled to Europe in 1607. James I of England who was also James VI of Scotland began to settle the province of Ulster with English and Scottish Protestant settlers in 1609.

Approximately 100,000 settlers arrived between the early 17th century and the early 18th century. The most staunchly Gaelic and Catholic region of Ireland in time became the most staunchly British and Protestant. The counties of Antrim and Down in particular would be dominated by an industrious and fiercely devout Presbyterian population motivated by the Protestant work ethic.

After the religious wars of the 17th century both Catholics and Presbyterians to a lesser extent were subjected to a series of penal laws that discriminated against them religiously, politically, economically and culturally. In the late 18th century discrimination was gradually lifted and some radical Presbyterians united with Catholics during the ill-fated United Irishman rebellion. Protestant rebels led by Henry Joy McCracken suffered a bloody defeat in Antrim town while another force led by Henry Munro in County Down was also crushed.

Subsequently the Protestant loyalist and fiercely anti-Catholic Orange Order, named in honour of the late 17th century Protestant King William III of Orange or 'King Billy' who defeated the Catholics forces of James II at the Boyne in 1690, grew in influence. Successive British governments, especially the Conservatives, came to see Ulster Presbyterians as their allies against the majority Catholic population to the south who sought greater political independence. Also Ulster Protestants who had once harboured republican sympathies increasingly came to see their interests bound up with union with Britain .

By the beginning of the 19th century the north east of Ireland was beginning to prosper as the British industrial revolution took off and by the turn of the 20th century the city of Belfast would briefly be the largest city in Ireland . Ulster Protestants retained their strong religious and cultural links with Scotland which also prospered during this period. The most successful and famous industries associated with Belfast were linen, rope making and shipbuilding. The principle towns of Antrim in the early 19th century were Antrim, Ballymena, Carrickfergus, Larne, Lisburn (which later had city status)and Newtownabbey and were themselves important industrial centres.

However the rest of Ireland remained economically under developed characterised by an Anglo-Irish Protestant Ascendancy who lived in luxury and an illiterate Catholic underclass of tenants and landless peasants who lived in abject poverty. The great Irish Potato famine of the 1840s which devastated most of Ireland claiming approximately a million lives and forced a million more to emigrate did not affect the Protestant north east as badly. Less than 5% were in need of food relief and Lord Antrim established soup kitchens for those who were hungry.

The late 19th and early 20th century witnessed the increasing militancy of Irish Catholic dominated movements such as the Fenians, the Land League and the Irish Parliamentary Party. Ulster Protestants especially in Antrim fiercely opposed Home Rule and responded by creating the Ulster Volunteer Force in 1913. After the Irish War of Independence and Irish Civil War, six counties of Ulster including Antrim with an Unionist and Protestant majority remained in the United Kingdom forming the state of Northern Ireland with its own assembly at Stormont outside Belfast. Poverty, emigration and the power of the Catholic Church in the 26 county Free State and later Republic of Ireland convinced Ulster Protestants of the wisdom of remaining in the United Kingdom after 1922.

Rev. John DuBourdieu (1755-1839) was a clergyman based in Annahilt, Co. Down who was also a statistician and surveyor of note. His son Francis Rawdon Hastings DuBourdieu (1784-1855) was a soldier, businessman, engineer and architect.

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