The Campbells of Aughalane
Today there is only one burial site surrounded by tall iron railings (No. 56), at least it is the only one surviving now. It consists of one upright headstone, which is the newest stone, and two flat slate stones, one level with the ground, the oldest stone, and the other resting on top of it sitting on four small pedestals. This is the burial site of the Campbells who lived in Aughalane House, which was situated in the townland of Aughalane, east of Plumbridge, just off the B47 road.
The first named on the oldest stone is Hugh Campbell who was born about 1669 and died 27th July 1756. He had two sons, John and Andrew. John of Letterbratt, which is a townland northwest of Plumbridge, married Margaret McFarland of Leardin, which is east of Corickmore. He owned land in the townlands of Letterbratt, Aughalane, Oughtboy, Glenrone, Glencoppagagh, Eden and Beragh. He had three sons – Hugh, Andrew and John. Hugh and Andrew are buried in this grave. Andrew died 21st December 1796. Hugh was born about 1738 and died on the 2nd November 1810. Hugh married twice – first to Catherine Denny and second to Elizabeth Buchanan. By Catherine it has been established that he had one son, John, and five daughters. Only John is named on the headstone. By his second wife Elizabeth Buchanan, who is also buried in this grave, there were four boys and two girls. Although many of Hugh Campbell’s descendants emigrated to the United States of America and Canada, the two best known for their exploits in the nineteenth century are his sons Hugh and Robert. His other two sons, Andrew and James Alexander, and his two daughters, Ann and Elizabeth are buried in the grave, along with Andrew’s wife, Elizabeth Boyle and their daughter-in-law, Jane McFarland, who was the wife of their son, Robert Boyle Campbell. Robert Boyle Campbell’s name is not mentioned on the headstone, but he died 14th May 1900 in Glasgow. Other Campbell descendants buried in Corrick include Elizabeth McIwaine (No. 12) and family, and Annie McFarlane (No. 50). It is likely there are more family members buried here, but either their names were not recorded on the Campbell headstone, or the headstones do not now exist or are illegible. It can be noted that several of the Campbell wives are not mentioned on the stones.
The second Hugh Campbell mentioned on the stone, who died 2nd November 1810 aged 72, and married twice, erected Aughalane House in 1786. This is quite a large building, a stage up from being a cottage, and a stage below being a Georgian farmhouse. Two inscribed stones were set into the wall above the front door. The first, on the right, says “Hugh Campbell built this house in the year of Our Lord 1786.” The second, on the left, is a carving of Campbell Arms along with the words “The most Noble Duke of Argyle” and a Latin inscription translated as “I scarcely call these things our own.” The family name of the Duke of Argyle is Campbell.
The Campbells lived in the house until at least 1876 when the house was bought by Charles Dunn of Lisnascreaght, Plumbridge, whose brother, “Big” Robert Dunn, had married Jane Campbell, daughter of the Andrew Campbell who died in 1868. The last Dunn to live in Aughalane House was William Samuel Dunn who died 10th October 1976. By this time the house had become derelict and was inherited by the Reaney family. It was about to be demolished in 1985 when it was acquired by the Ulster American Folk Park. It was dismantled and re-erected in the Folk Park and opened to the public in May 1992.
One of the reasons for the house being moved to the Folk Park was because it was the birth place of the brothers Hugh and Robert Campbell. Hugh, who was born January 1st 1796, emigrated to the United States of America aboard the “Phoenix” in June 1818. He set up business as a merchant in Milton, North Carolina and Virginia, before becoming one of Philadelphia’s most prominent merchants. Then he moved to live in Washington Avenue, St. Louis, Missouri, in 1859 and entered into a partnership with his brother. Hugh wrote a journal recounting his journey from Londonderry to America, and his early days in the United States of America, describing in great detail all his hair-raising adventures. Hugh died on the 4th December 1879. He made one visit home in December 1835 when it was reported in the Derry Journal that bonfires were lit, guns were fired and a warm welcome was given to him.