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RG4242.AM:  Horace Curzon Plunkett, 1854-1932

Letters, etc.:  1917-1953

Dublin, Ireland and Weybridge, Surrey, England:  Rancher, Reformer and Leader of Cooperative Movement

Size:  0.5 cu.ft.; 1 box


Sir Horace Curzon Plunkett, third son of the 16th Baron Dusany, was born on October 24, 1854, in County Meath, Ireland.  He attended Eton and Oxford and shortly after his graduation arrived in Nebraska where he hoped that a strenuous frontier life would improve his physical condition.  In 1879 Plunkett settled in the Powder River country of Wyoming.  For several years he drove bull teams in western Nebraska, Wyoming, and Colorado.  Developing an interest in ranching, Plunkett organized the Powder River Cattle Company.  He also organized a real estate company and acquired considerable amounts of property in Nebraska and Wyoming.

Returning to Ireland in 1890, Plunkett was determined to put his plan of agricultural cooperation to work.  Sir Horace became best known for his establishment of agricultural cooperative societies.  He was also closely identified with the Irish movement for self-government and was an original member of the Irish Free State Senate and the chairman of the Irish Dominion League.  Sir Horace Plunkett died on March 26, 1932, at his home in Weybridge, Surrey, England.  At the time of his death, observers of the Irish political scene claimed that no man of his generation had done more to promote the material welfare of Ireland.


This collection consists of one box of manuscript material arranged in two series:  1) Correspondence, 1917-1953; and 2) Miscellany.  This collection relates primarily to the American financial interests of Sir Horace Plunkett.  Additional material relates to Sir Horace’s estate and his property interests in Omaha and Wyoming as managed by Conrad H. Young, Omaha real estate agent.

The bulk of this collection is comprised of the correspondence, 1917-1953, which appears in Series 1.  Nearly all of the letters are written to Conrad H. Young, Omaha realtor, who served as Sir Horace Plunkett’s land agent.  Young looked after Plunkett’s ranch land and Omaha land investments from the late 1800’s until Plunkett’s death in 1932.  Plunkett’s letters to Young discuss his financial concerns over the Nebraska-Wyoming Development Company and the Wheatlands Industrial Company, companies Plunkett organized during his years of residence in Nebraska and Wyoming.  Plunkett also describes the changing political conditions in Ireland and his efforts to promote co-operative agricultural societies.

With Sir Horace’s death on March 26, 1932, letters sent to Young were written by Henry Fitzgerald Heard, executor of Plunkett’s estate.  Heard’s letters relate to the estate left by Sir Horace and efforts to liquidate and realize assets on those holdings.  Young became president of the Nebraska-Wyoming Development Company after Sir Horace’s death and managed the estate’s property interests in Wyoming and Omaha until the estate was settled.

The Miscellany of Series 2 includes Sir Horace Plunkett’s Will; newspaper clippings about Sir Horace; and young family materials.

Note:  See the library for several publications about Sir Horace Plunkett.


Series 1 – Correspondence, 1917-1953

Box 1


  1. 1917

  2. 1918-1919

  3. 1924-June 1930

  4. 1931, July – 1932, Mar.

  5. 1932, Apr. – 1934

  6. 1939-1942

  7. 1943-1944

  8. 1945-1946

  9. 1947-1953

Series 2 – Miscellany

  1. Will and Codicil of Sir Horace Plunkett

  2. Newspaper Clippings

  3. Young Family material


Subject headings:

Heard, Henry Fitzgerald, 1889-1971


Nebraska-Wyoming Development Company

Plunkett, Horace Curzon, Sir, 1854-1932

Wheatland Industrial Company

Wyoming Development Company

Young, Conrad H., 1874-1962


AIP/pmc                  10-13-1987