The Dobbs Family

The Dobbs family are still prominently involved in the affairs of the town, borough and county

John Dobbs arrived in Ireland in 1596 with the army of Henry Dockwra. After marrying Margaret, the only child of John Dalway of Ballyhill, Dobbs built a small castle on the land. His family prospered and took on an active role in the affairs of Carrickfergus, a service that continues to the present day through a line of sheriffs, town mayors, members of parliament, and lord lieutenants.

Arthur Dobbs, born in 1689, had a long and distinguished career, becoming mayor of Carrickfergus, an MP and surveyor general of Ireland. Regarded as an improving landlord, he was fascinated with the New World and with exploration. In 1753 he was appointed governor of North Carolina, where he was respected as a fine administrator who served his new state with great vigour. Dobbs was instrumental in encouraging the emigration of the Jackson family, whose son was to become one of America’s greatest presidents.

Castle Dobbs remains the home of the Dobbs family and its members are still prominently involved in the life of the town and the affairs of the borough and county.

Reproduced with kind permission of Carrickfergus Borough Council 2004