The Milford Buildings Preservation Trust is delighted to announce that it has recently purchased a five arm brass and cut glass chandelier made by the General Electric Company in 1900. The acquisition was made possible through a generous grant from Northern Ireland Museums Council Acquisition Grant and funds raided by the Trust. The chandelier is extremely important as it matches one of the set of our lost from Milford House Co. Armagh, which is famous the first private residence in Ireland to have hydroelectricity. As such the electric light fittings in the house were absolutely unique. The chandeliers in the Drawing Room were supplied for the house by the General Electric Company.

Important chandeliar

Milford House is the former seat of the Mc Crum family one of Ulster’s leading industrial families who revolutionised the linen industry and world of sport. The family fortunes were badly hit by the Wall Street Crash and in the 1930 great auction of contents of Milford House most of the contents were dispersed including the large chandelier from the Dining Room. However the four large chandeliers in the Drawing Room were not sold off and can be seen in the 1938 and 1940s photographs of the room when it was the Recreation Room for Manor House School. There are no photographic records or descriptions of the other original light fittings in the house. Unfortunately when in 1966 the Northern Ireland Hospital Authority purchased Milford House these chandeliers along with many original features were removed to bring the house up to standard. It is unknown what happened the chandeliers and others fittings removed by the Hospital Authority.

Margaret Mc Manus Chairperson of Milford Buildings Preservation Trust explained: “It is the Collections Development Policy of the Trust which owns the collections, that in absence of lost original contents and features of Milford House to acquire items which closely match those items lost from Milford House using photographs, auction advertisements and the Manor House School inventory. This is to ensure that the rooms open to public portray as accurate as possible how Milford House looked at different periods in its history when it was a family residence and when it was a private girls School. While it is not one of the four Milford House Drawing Room chandeliers, it is identical to photographic records. Furthermore this chandelier is made by General Electric Company the same company who made the original Milford House chandeliers. The acquisition of the chandelier for the museum Drawing Room provides opportunity to help more accurately convey the style in which the Mc Crum family lived, and the story of electricity at Milford. The Trust is very grateful to the Northern Ireland Museums Council and all who supported the Trust in raising funds to secure this important item”.

The acquisition of the chandelier is part of a major project of representation of the collections which the Trust is working on to make the heritage of Milford House, the Mc Crum family and Manor House School more accessible. The chandelier is due on permanent public display later in 2015. The Trust appeals to anyone who knows of anything of the lost contents of Milford House to contact them. More information is available at