Henry Cary and South Falkland
When William Vaughan's Welsh colonists abandoned Renews in 1619 he
subdivided his lands, which were themselves only a portion of the
original Newfoundland Company grant. He sold off a narrow strip,
south of Aquaforte, to a prominent man in the court of James I --
Sir Henry Cary, who became Viscount Falkland the next year.
Cary in fact obtained control over two of the subdivided Newfoundland
lots: as well as "South Falkland", which included Fermeuse and
part of the harbour of Renews, he also claimed the Bonavista Peninsula
as "North Falkland".
North and South Falkland.
Map shows the lands
controlled by Henry Cary in the 17th century.
Illustration by Duleepa Wijayawardhana, 1998.
Richard Whitbourne promoted these areas for colonization in the second
edition of his Discourse and Discovery of Newfoundland (1622), and
another colonial propagandist identifying himself as "T.C." did
the same in A Short Discourse of the New-Found-Land (Dublin 1623).
Falkland was at this time Lord Deputy of Ireland. In his colonial schemes
we can see intersecting Irish and Newfoundland connections, as there were in
Sir George Calvert's Colony of Avalon at Ferryland.
Falkland's colonial promoters made generous offers of land to those who would
settle and work in the fishery. No one attempted to colonize Falkland's grant
in Trinity Bay in this period. But according to Vaughan, in The Newlanders
Cure (1630), in 1623 Sir Francis Tanfield founded a colony in South Falkland,
at Fermeuse. Tanfield was probably a cousin of Falkland's wife. We do not know who
the settlers were, nor how long the colony lasted as a sponsored settlement:
Probably no longer than the nearby Colony of Avalon, from which the Calverts
withdrew in 1629. Settlement at Renews seems to have been continuous from this
period and, if it was, then South Falkland was not a complete failure as a
colonial effort, even if it failed to turn a profit for its aristocratic backer.