CONOLLY, William (d.1754), of Stratton Hall, Staffs. and Castletown, co. Kildare.
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Family and Education
s. of ?Rev. John Conolly1 and nephew of Thomas Conolly, Speaker of the Irish House of Commons 1715-29. m. 1733, Lady Anne Wentworth, da. of Thomas, 1st Earl of Strafford, 1s. 4da. suc. to estates of his uncle 1729.
M.P. [I] 1727-d.
P.C. [I]; cursitor in Chancery [I] 1721-d.
In 1729 William Conolly inherited the estates of his uncle, Thomas Conolly, Speaker of the Irish House of Commons, reported to be the richest man in Ireland. In 1733 he married the daughter of Lord Strafford, on whose interest he was returned for Aldeburgh in 1734, though Strafford was a Tory, while Conolly describes himself in a letter to his father-in-law as ‘an incorrigible Whig’, adding:
Neither the outcry against the excise, standing army etc., could change my thought, without the hope of place or pension, which is attributed to be the only excuse of people’s steadiness at present.2
Voting consistently with the Government, he was classed in 1746 as Old Whig. He decided not to stand for Aldeburgh in 1747,3 when he was returned for Petersfield. He died 2 Jan. 1754, ‘possessed of an estate of £15,000 p.a.’4