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Ever since Lord and Lady Carlow came to reside at Emo Park, the stately mansion has more than once been the scene of brilliant festivities. It will be remembered that on the occasion of their first visit they were received in Portarlington and Emo with considerable enthusiasm, and the evidence of good will and welcome which were then displayed have since frequently been the cause of considerable happiness amongst the tenantry on his lordship’s valuable property.

On Friday evening, the 8th inst., his lordship and her ladyship gave a grand ball to their household, and the event must be regarded as the beginning of a series of a similar character in the county, as on this occasion all the houses of the gentry were well represented, and the number of invitations issued left no doubt that any could be omitted.  Emo House on Friday night could not fail to bring to memory the many happy reunions which took place within the demesne walls in the days of the late Lord Portarlington, when each season had its annual institution; and this present occasion must be described, comparatively speaking, as in every respect worthy of its predecessors. 

A large portion of the house was nicely decorated with wreaths, and appropriate mottoes were to be seen on every side, those in particular wishing “Long life to Lord and Lady Carlow” and “Peace, happiness and prosperity to Emo Park”. On entering the long hall a signal of “Welcome” greeted those who came to brighten the proceedings of the evening, and the ballroom itself was a vision of light and gaiety. The decorations reflect credit on the pains taken by Mr M’Leod (the gardener) and his assistants, whilst to Mr Bennett, Mrs Slater, Miss Hellyer, and the host of ladies and gentlemen who assisted, every possible praise must be given, as they had everything, so far as refreshments and supper were concerned, in apple-pie order.

The front hall and dining-room, with their finely polished oak floors, were converted into a spacious ballroom, and the saloon, with its lofty conical ceiling and arched entrances, formed a very comfortable and favourable position for the band of the Scots Greys, which played a lengthy programme, there being altogether twenty-six pieces. Three popular solos were given on the cornet, “Home, Sweet Home”, “The Last Rose of Summer”, and “Annie Laurie”, which were highly appreciated. 

The refreshments, which were looked after by Mr Brown, were had in his lordship’s billiard-room, whilst supper was served in most recherche style in the servants’ hall, the latter being elaborately fitted up. Particular attention was devoted to the comfort of those who engaged in the dances, as some of the rooms and passages were thrown open to any who desired a little recreation, and the “nooks and corners” were so very beautiful and comfortable that their happy occupiers seemed loath to leave them, even when the sound of the music proclaimed that another dance had begun.

Ten o’clock was the hour at which dancing was announced to commence, and by that time there were quite fifty couple present, besides a number of those who did not take part in the pleasures of the gliding valses, polkas etc. Just as the band was about to strike up, his lordship and her ladyship entered the room, and were most appropriately received. They were followed by their two children, the Hon, Lionel Damer and the Hon Aline, M Dames Esq, Captain Hayworth ADC, Mr Jeffrey Smyth, Mr FitzHerbert, Mr, Mrs and Miss Hallyburton Campbell, and Miss Ruddock. His lordship, replying to the greeting they had received, welcomed everyone to his house, and hoped that all would enjoy themselves.  Lord Carlow was not long in the ballroom until he had succeeded in making the guests at home, and, with Mr Dempster as master of ceremonies, the dancing was opened with a quadrille, in which the Viscountess and her visitors joined, the following the “couples” for the initiatory dance: - Lady Carlow, Mr Bennett, butler; Lord Carlow, Mrs Slator, housekeeper; Miss Hellyer, Mr Thorp; Miss Dorks, Mr Dames; Miss Skeffington Smyth, sergeant Major Duncan; Miss Ruddock, Captain Hayworth, Aide-de-Camp; Mrs Hallyburton Campbell, Mr Jeffrey Skeffington Smyth; Mrs Heming, Mr Cobbe.

It must not be omitted to state that the dresses worn by the fair sex were not alone charming and varied, but most becoming and striking.  Lady Carlow looked very pretty in a dress of black velvet, with valuable old Brussels lace, tiara, and a necklace of diamonds. The children were extremely happy, and looked bright and airy in the costume which they donned at the fancy dress ball given at the Viceregal Lodge on the previous Tuesday, the Hon Aline representing a daffodil, and her brother, the Hon Lionel Damer, a page.  By request of Lord Carlow, Mr Molloy and Mr Holmes gave an Irish jig. 

After a couple of hours Lord and Lady Carlow and their honoured guests retired, and dancing was continued with much fervour by the household and their visitors till an early hour the following morning. Prior to separation, the necessary votes of thanks were proposed and passed in the most cordial manner, and then came the snatches of farewell, and the expressions of hope that once again they should meet under similar auspices.

The house party included Lord and Lady Carlow, Captain Hayworth, ADC; Messrs Dames and B FitzHerbert, Miss Ruddock.

The party from mount Henry included – Mrs and Miss Hallyburton Campbell, Miss Skeffington Smyth, Mr Jeffrey Skeffington Smyth etc.

From Killeen – Mr and Mrs Pearson, Mr Leatham, Mrs Cuningham, Miss Goddard, Miss Gordon, Mr and Mrs Dixon Holmes, Mrs Ballandier, Mr Bailey.

From Moore Abbey -  Mr Groom, Mrs Bulmer, Mrs Jelf, Miss Murray, Miss Wilford, Miss Perths, Miss Abercrombie, Miss Vesey, Miss Parker, Mr Stock, Mr Donovan, Miss White.

From Newbridge – Reg. Sergeant-Major and Mrs Hayhoe, Troop Sergeant Hardy, and Troop Sergeant Duncan