The High Sheriff of Louth was the Crown's representative for County Louth, a territory known as his bailiwick. Selected from three nominated people, he held his office over the duration of a year. He had judicial, ceremonial and administrative functions and executed High Court Writs.
The office of High Sheriff is the oldest under the British crown. It was established in Louth in 1227 and remained first in precedence in the county until the reign of Edward VII, when an Order in Council in 1908 gave the Lord-Lieutenant the prime office under the Crown as the Sovereign's personal representative. In the United Kingdom, the High Sheriff remains the Sovereign's county representative for all matters relating to the Judiciary and the maintenance of law and order. The office of High Sheriff of Louth was abolished in 1922 when the Irish Free State became largely independent.