Report by Sandra Millsopp
He was given land in the Welsh Marches. The County and town of Montgomery bear his name. The family later moved to Scotland and many of the Irish Montgomerys are descendants of the Scottish settlers.
Hugh was the son of the Laird of Braidstane. He became a teacher and an agent in Dublin for James VI of Scotland. He planned Con O'Neill's escape from Carrickfergus Gaol and secured Con's pardon. His reward was to be half of Con's land but another Scottish supporter of James - James Hamilton - intervened so the land was divided between the three of them. Montgomery founded Newtownards, restored the Priory and built the Market Cross. He established the sea route between Donaghadee and Portpatrick in Scotland.
Montgomery became a Member of Parliament (MP) and was made Viscount Montgomery of the Great Ardes. His second son, James, settled at Rosemount in 1629 and built the first house there. It was burned by native Irish in 1648.
A new house was started immediately. Some stones from the ruined Abbey were used in its construction. It was burned accidentally in 1758 and the third, and present, house was started soon afterwards. Since then it has been altered in several ways. The entrance hall was changed when the driveway was relocated. In the 1840s a Hugh Montgomery married a Miss Herbert from the Welsh Marches. She had the roof raised to allow the addition of extra bedrooms for her eight children. The dining room was altered in the 1820s by the architect Vitruvius Morrison. A century later the intellectual wife of General William Montgomery added a small block at the back for a bathroom to enable the men to change after hunting.
The rooms at the back have a good view over the ha-ha to the ruins of the Abbey.