County Down, named after its county town, Downpatrick, is one of six counties that form Northern Ireland, situated in the northeast of the island of Ireland. Adjoined to the southeast shore of Lough Neagh, It is one of the thirty-two traditionalMoreCounty Down, named after its county town, Downpatrick, is one of six counties that form Northern Ireland, situated in the northeast of the island of Ireland.
Adjoined to the southeast shore of Lough Neagh, It is one of the thirty-two traditional counties of Ireland, lying within the province of Ulster. More than 9000 years ago, the first settlers arrived on the shores of Strangford Lough in County Down. St Patrick is said to have waded ashore at the mouth of the Slaney River, near Strangford Loughs entrance. It was from the area around Strangford Lough that Patricks followers spread Christianity throughout Ireland.
Many of the protestant planters brought to Ireland, may not have been there of their own choice. To get a grant of land you first of all had to be well connected to the rulers of the time. During the Ulster Plantation in 1600, you had to undertake to plant the land with a given number of people and build a fortified house or castle. These people became known as Undertakers. They were for the most part people, who already had estates in England, so they would have said to some of their tenants there, I am going to Ireland would you like to come with me and I will rent you some land on which to build a house, you can then start a new life there as a tenant of mine?
If they said, No, they would probably have been told to move on. The first known Stockdales in Northern Ireland and the earliest known with this surname were three brothers from Yorkshire, north of England in late 1600s- one brother moved to County Tyrone, next brother settled in Ballyculter area and third brother settled in Downpatrick area.