KILMURRY HIDDEN GEMS TOUR NOTES
‘The man who knows his own half-acre knows the world’
Grotto – 11.05am
The grotto was built in 1954 for the The Marion Year, a year of special devotion to the Blessed Virgin. The site chosen is that of Sceach an tSagairt which means The Priest’s Bush. Tradition has it that a number of priests or monks attached to the medieval church in the old graveyard went on the run during penal times. They hid out on Cnoc an Tobair but were captured there and were hanged from a tree on this particular site. It has been said that up to fairly recent times, 4 or 5 burial mounds could still be seen on Cnoc an Tobair where they were buried.
The limestone steps came from Greenville House, the home of G. S. Sweete who is registered as owning 3,094 acres in 1871. The Sweete’s estate was said to contain lakes with great numbers of swans and waterfowl. There was also a rath (ring fort) on the lands in which copper coins were found. The house had been attacked by the Whiteboys in 1822.
Cnoc an Tobair – The Hill of the Well
Cnoc an Tobair is 590 feet above sea level, overlooking Lissarda. As the name suggests, it literally means Hill of the Well. In the townland of Ballymichael, the well itself is located on the north west of the hill, in an area of scrubland, thin soil and rocky outcrops. The immediate surrounding landscape is of fertile agricultural land and Cnoc an Tobair is unique within this landscape as a small area of virtually unspoilt nature reserve.
Tobair Muire translates as Mary’s Well and is therefore associated with the Blessed Virgin. The well’s construction is corbelled dome which covers a natural spring in a sandstone outcrop. The dome of the well is constructed with large sandstones and intermingled with these slabs are small quartz like stones and pebbles which are regularly found at ancient sacred sites. A large quartz like boulder is used as the boulder on a burial site just south-west of where we now stand in the same townland of Ballymichael. Another Boulder Burial and radial stones are sited to south of us in the townland of Clomacow.
The traditional feast day associated with this holy well is the 8th September, the birthday of the Blessed Virgin. In previous decades, this day was marked by a constant stream of pilgrims from morning until late evening, making their way from a number of directions through the surrounding fields to do the ‘rounds’. Tradition tells us that Saint Finbarr was baptised there, brought here from his birth place at Garranes in Templemartin. Considering St. Finbarr was born c. 550, we are talking about a site already in existence 1500 years ago.
A field trip to Cnoc an Tobair is taking place on Sunday 10th September, leaving the Museum at 2pm. You are all welcome to join us in walking the pilgrim route.
Sean Crowley, local historian and author, tells us that Cnoc an Tobair can be seen from his hillfort at Gurranes, which is a site of significant archaeological importance and is the subject of continuing research and excavation by Professor Billy O’Brien and his archaeology students at UCC.
There is a field trip to Cnoc an Tobair on the 10th September at 2pm and everyone is welcome to join us on the day when we play just a small contribution in keeping the tradition alive and not allow such a sacred and special place in our parish be forgotten
There is a field trip taking place to Garranes on Sunday 24th September, led by Professor O’Brien if you would like to attend. 11am outside Cloughduv Church.
Ballymichael House – 11.10am
Because anti-Treaty soldiers had blocked and mined roads, many of the country’s main routes were not navigational, on the morning of the 22nd August 1922. Michael Collins convoy, travelling from Macroom, was fronted by a motor cyclist, followed by the Crossley tender containing 15 men, followed by the Leyland open Touring Car with its two drivers and with Collins and Dalton in the back seat. The Slievenamon armoured car, crewed by 5 soldiers was at the rear of the convoy. The circuitous route brought them by narrow roads through the Forge Cross, Toames and Doonisky, along the Beamish’s Line and took the small side road off Ballymichael Bridge, up Farran as it is locally known. The armoured-car faltered unable to take the steep hill. Deirdre Bourke’s grandmother at an upstairs window and her grandfather working in the yard saw the soldiers get out of the tender and push the armoured car up the hill. At the top of the hill, the convoy turned right into Kilmurry, driving through the village and down into Bealnablath where on the return journey at nightfall, Collins would meet his death.
Warrenscourt 11.15am – 11.45am
This building is a detached square-plan single-bay four-stage ornamental tower, built in circa 1840 (as present on 1842 OS map) with Rubble stone walls having corner piers and square-headed openings. This tower is recorded as a folly in the national inventory of architectural heritage. It was built by Charles Beamish of Delacour Villa Lissarda. It is often mistaken for a tower house. The building is on the site of an old church and graveyard (Aghado Dunisky) of which no trace remains. Griffith’s Valuation of 1852 shows Charles Beamish as the owner of a large portion of land in Dunisky parish. Local legend states that the building was created as a mausoleum “for his three wives” but he only had one spouse and she outlived him! Charles Beamish died in 1867 and is rumoured to have been placed in the mausoleum. In 1896, the Ordnance Survey twenty-five-inch map describes Beamish’s tomb as a ‘mausoleum’. According to the monumental records for west Cork it is ‘likely therefore that Charles Beamish, a noted eccentric built the tower as a folly beside his house. The tower used to be a noted symbol on Beamish Beer bottles.
The Cork/Macroom Railway 11.50am
The line was officially opened on 12th May 1866 for this parish at Crookstown on the Castlemore Road and at Doonisky. Richard and Kitty Brown’s house is the site of the Doonisky Station and Corkery’s house on the Crookstown/Castlemore road is the site of Crookstown Road Station. It was a single track, 5 ft 3 in gauge route with few earthworks or other major engineering features; the largest bridge was a wooden structure spanning the River Lee between Dooniskey and Macroom. The original train service provided three workings each way on weekdays and two on Sundays. The new railway was an instant success, its initial operating ratio of 58 per cent making it potentially one of the most profitable in Ireland. The line was immediately popular among daily commuters who were able to live in the country and travel to and from Cork on a regular basis, while at the same time the Cork& Macroom route attracted tourists and leisure travellers wishing to visit Blarney Castle or other local attractions. Coaches began running between Macroom and Killarney shortly after the opening of the line and the railway company was soon advertising the delights of ‘The Tourist route to Blarney’.
Traffic receipts on the newly-opened railway were surprisingly good, 81,763 passengers being carried in the first six months of operation. Goods traffic developed at a more modest pace, although revenue increased considerably as the company established cattle loading docks and other necessary facilities at Macroom and the intermediate stations, and a healthy dividend of five per cent was soon being paid to investors.
Crookstown Road was the scene of a fatal accident that took place on Friday 8 June 1866 when a ‘ ballast train’ ran into a ‘lorry’ (presumably a ganger’s vehicle) that had been parked on the line, smashing it to pieces and killing two people and injuring several. On the evening of Sunday 8 September 1878, the 7.15 pm service from Macroom stopped at Dooniskey to pick up several passengers who were returning from a day in Kilmurry. The 8th September was an annual fair day in Kilmurry and it was also a centuries old pilgrimage day to Cnoc an Tobair. Due into Cork at 8.30 pm, the train was involved in a serious accident at Curragheen, about a mile to the east of Ballincollig station. The train had departed from Macroom a little later than usual, and it was at first suggested that the driver, James Rattray – who had driven the very first train some twelve years before – was attempting to make up time. Ballincollig was left at 8.12 pm, and the train quickly gathered speed for the last stage of its journey to Cork Albert Quay. Sadly, the driver and two passengers were killed instantly, while the fireman and one other passenger died later, bringing the final death toll to five. The closure came into effect from Tuesday 1 December 1953 and, in February 1954; The Railway Magazine reported that ‘part of the abandoned line would be flooded under the Lee hydro-electric scheme’. The railway bridge can still be seen emerging from the water at Dooniskey.
Old Forge – Kate O’Callaghan – 11.55am
This is the site of the Murphy’s blacksmith. The Murphy’s were to take a major role in the War of Independence when Matthew joined the local IRA at about 16 years of age. It was the Murphy sisters though who were quite extraordinary women. Very well educated for the time, three of them because lecturers at Mary Immaculate College in Limerick and another sister qualified as a doctor.
Kate married Michael O’Callaghan of Limerick whose family had a tanning industry. Both Kate and Michael were strong nationalists, he joining Sinn Féin and she Cumann na mBan. Michael became Lord Mayor of Limerick and the following year was succeeded by George Clancy. On the night of the 7th March 1921, both men and an IRA volunteer named O’Donoghue were murdered by secret Crown forces. Michael was killed in the presence of Kate. These murders happened within days of the murder of Tomás MacCurtain, Lord Mayor of Cork who was succeeded by our own Terence MacSwiney whose ancestors, down to his grandfather are buried in the old cemetery in Kilmurry.
Kate stood as a Sinn Féin candidate in the first Dáil, one of only 6 women elected, including Countess Markievicz,, Mary MacSwiney, sister of Terence, Padraig and Willie Pearce’s mother, the widow of Count Plunkett and Kathleen Clarke. Kate also won a seat to the Second Dáil but that time stood as an Anti-Treaty candidate. Síle Murphy, the current occupant of Old Forge is a niece of Kate and daughter of Mattie.
When we get back to the museum, do take the opportunity to visit the exhibition where you will see a beautiful Celtic design costume which Kate wore. This costume was repaired and restored at considerable expense to the organisation but it is one of our prized possessions.
Lissarda Creamery – 12 noon
Lissarda Creamery was originally built by the Fitzgerald family as a stop for horse drawn coaches. However, the advent of the Cork-Macroom Railway caused this business to decline and it was subsequently leased and then purchased by the Lissarda Co-Op Creamery in 1892. It was one of the first co-ops in the country, later merging with Muskerry Co-Op, and then becoming part of Ballyclough Co-Op before closing in the mid 1980s.
It was purchased by George and Mary Lehane who converted it into a restaurant known as Butterfingers. George and Mary sold the premises to the Jennings family, trading as McGregors Furniture Store who initially leased the restaurant to the Crowley family trading as The High Fort (i.e. Lissarda) and later it traded as a Chinese restaurant which it still does today.
A well known landmark on the N22 Cork to Macroom road, the original building was designed for the Fitzgerald family by J W Barnard who also designed their residence, Carrigdarrery House. J W Barnard was Clerk of Works during the building of St. Patrick’s Bridge in Cork City and his name is inscribed on the bridge.
Currently, Larry and Jackie are researching the history of Mae Fitz’s so if anyone has information, they can pass it on to them please
Warrensgrove – 12.15 to 12.30 pm
Aidan and Síle to decide on salient points….
Warrensgrove was burned during the week of 6-13 June 1921. After the burning of Warrensgrove, the Big House was abandoned, and instead the substantial courtyard buildings were developed as a residence in the Neo-Tudor architectural style. The original, ‘Big House’ was not very old, late 18th century. Originally this house had a connection with the Rye’s of Ryecourt. George Rye (born in 1772 and brother of John Rye heir of Ryecourt) married Catherine Warren daughter of Sir Robert Warren of Warrenscourt House. As part of the marriage settlement she received a large dowry 5,000 acres covering Warrensgrove and Kilcondy. They changed the name of the estate to Ryemount but according to J.F. Collins this name did not stick. They had no family. This house then was the home of John Borlase Warren who succeeded his brother Sir Augustus Warren as 4th Baronet. He is recorded as being resident in 1837 and at the time of Griffith’s Valuation when he held the property from Sir Augustus Warren. The buildings were valued at £48. The Land was then let by Augustus Warren to John Godsil for 12 years. Godsil claimed in court at Cork Quarter Sessions in 1891 in that the holding was agricultural and that he was entitled to a fixed and fair rent under the 1881 land act. The judge dismissed the petition of Godsil owing to the land letting arrangement being temporary in nature.
Between 1919 and 1923, some 275 Big Houses were destroyed. The Big House, seat of the Protestant Ascendancy, had come to symbolise a despised regime. It wasn’t just the houses that were destroyed – their libraries, art collections and papers were destroyed too, obliterating whole chunks of history. Local agitators might have felt they had good reason to attack Warrensgrove due to the military pedigree of the inhabitants. The fifth baronet, Augustus Riversdale Warren, was a British army major who fought in the Crimean War, before going on to help put down the Indian Mutiny of 1857. At the time of the burning it belonged to Augustus Digby Warren, the seventh of the Warren baronets. Sir Augustus George Digby Warren, 7th Bt. was born on 23 October 1898.He was the son of Sir Augustus Riversdale John Blennerhasset Warren, 6th Bt. and Agnes Georgina Ievers. He died on 20 January 1958 at age 59, unmarried. He was educated Harrow and RMC Sandhurst. Being the 7th Baronet he was a U.K. Life Peer.1 He was Lieutenant 7th Hussars WW I, Major 17th/21st Lancers WW II. He was Member, Order of the British Empire (M.B.E.) in 1945.
In a letter to the Cork Constitution of 30 May 1861, John Borlaise Warren writes about the unusual topic of good quality tea! Dear Mr Newsom, I am in receipt of a letter from my son Liet. J. B. Warren HMS Actsson at Shanghai, dated Jan 22, 1861, and I think it only kind to you, as an old friend, to send you one paragraph. In answer to my request to bring me some genuine tea, he writes – “you think that by coming to China you get good tea; I have never tasted tea in China to equal that sold by Mr. Newsom in Cork, however you shall have your wish and I will ask some of my friends on shore to get me a few pounds of the best tea that can be had in China”. Yours sincerely, J.B. Warren. Warrensgrove, March 30, 1861.
Petty Sessions – Shandangan
Info?? Sile’s notes…..
Crookstown House – 12.45pm
There is a record of Thomas Crooke taking part in the plantation of Munster and founding an English Colony in the fishing village of Baltimore (which Barbary pirates captured the inhabitants in 1631. A descendant of his, Thomas Crooke married Ellen, daughter of Tiege Mac Dermod McCarthy (Lord of Muskerry) He built a large fortified house with a fish tank on roof at Crookstown. Thomas Crook was granted land here in 1666 (parish histories and place names of West Cork – Bruno O’Donoghue, Cork City Library.
In 1714 another descendant Thomas Crooke married Ellen, sister of Robert Warren, Kilbarry (Warrenscourt). The first mention of the village of Crookstown is in 1751, previously it was known as Incharahill. The mother of Robert Warren, 1st Baronet, was Anne Crooke and this house may have got its name from her. In 1770 William Crook sold his lands to Robert Warren. Crookstown house was the home of a branch of the Warren family from the late 18th century, occupied by the Reverend E. W. Warren in 1814, by the Reverend R. Warren in 1837 and in the early 1850s. The Reverend Robert Warren held the property in fee and the buildings were valued at £48. It was burnt in June 1921 during the War of Independence when it was the residence of Robert Warren.
Lissarda Ambush Monument – 12.50pm
More info ? Aidan or Louise about the ambush itself……..
In the aftermath of Lissarda Ambush, the day that Michael Galvin was shot, when the danger had passed and his comrades were able to retreat. The late Pake Sheehan carried the body of Michael Galvin on his back up through here where they laid his body down and waited until cover of darkness before carrying the body down into the village and burying it behind St. Mary’s Church where it lay for a period of six weeks until it was safe to exhume the body and reinter it in the Galvin plot in the old cemetery in Kilmurry. The tri-colour which draped Michael Galvin’s coffin and his Roll of Honour medal were donated recently to Kilmurry Museum.
As a result of Michael Galvin’s death, the IRA changed their policy and no longer allowed married men to go on active service.
Lissarda House – approx. 1pm to 1.15pm
Refreshments Served and Brian Mahony gives talk and brief walk through house.
Stage Cross – 2.20 pm
Given its name from the days of the stage coaches. These were 4 wheeled vehicles pulled by horses along designated routes. In the vicinity of this cross roads, the coach would stop to pick up passengers. Sometimes it would be necessary to change horses or to feed and water them.
Clodagh Castle is a square tower house which stands 4 storeys high. On the 4th floor there are several nice mullioned windows. dates back to the 16th century, as there is said to be a fireplace on its 4th floor which bears the date 1598. The castle was the main seat of the MacSweeney family. The MacSweeneys were military commanders under the MacCarthys, who, in the thirteenth century, were celebrated as chiefs under the O’Donnells of Donegal; and hence the head of the clan was styled MacSuibhne-na-dTuadh or MacSweeney of the Battle Axes. In Munster, the MacSweeneys had the parish of Kilmurry, in the barony of Muskerry, and had their chief castle at Clodagh, and had also Castlemore in the parish of Moviddy
Crookstown – 2.25pm
Tadgh Cronin Haulage operated from the yard for several decades up to 1993 when it closed. Another local business was Goodstuffs which was owned by the Mill, Fred Down and Tadgh Cronin.
The fish yard started in 1985, where fish were processed for sale. The business closed around 2000. It gave a lot of local employment, with up to 25 or 30 people at busy times.
A forge was operated out of Oliver Lucey’s place just over the bridge by Twomey’s who also owned the shop where McSwiney’s are now. Pete O’Riordan bought the forge from Twomeys, apparently, purchasing it for £100 in the 1960s.
When we look back at the Tithe Appointment books (1823-37 which contain a record of valuations assessed for each rural parish by the parochial commissioners) many of the surnames of current residents are the same as those listed in 1823. In Upper Bellmount we have Dromeys, Desmonds, Cunninghams, Walls, Longs, Lynch and Murray. In Lower Bellmount we have Herricks, Walls, Riordans and Murphy’s.
Guy’s city and county almanac 1921 describes Crookstown as a thriving commercial centre and a hive of activity. It contained a post office and telegraph office under the postmistress—Mrs Horgan Crookstown is described as having a train station with four trains to and from Cork daily and the Stationmaster is given as Timmy Buckley. In terms of businesses we have:
- Burke grocer and carpenter
Timothy Crowley, tailor
Mrs M, Donovan vintner, Bellmount
D Horgan, vintner, Bellmount lower
Mrs D Horgan, draper, grocer
J Keane, draper and tailor
Jeremiah Lynch, limestone and marble yard, Scart lower
Mrs McSweeney, carriage works and saw mills
Jermh O’Regan, DC, victualler, draper and general merchant, Bellmount lower
Peter Twomey, seed, manure, hardware and general merchant.
Bellmount flour mills owned by Patrick Howard and managed by Peter Twomey.
A local resident remembers 25 businesses in Crookstown in his lifetime.
Howard’s Flour Mill/Bellmount Mills
The flour mill was built in 1810 and was operational until 2001. Thomas Herrick was the proprietor of Bellmount in 1837 along with a large flour mill. The mill and house were in the possession of Patrick Howard at the time of Griffith’s Valuation and held from John E. Herrick. The house was valued at £18 and the mill at £65 (the primary valuation of Ireland or Griffith’s Valuation – carried out between 1848 and 1864 to determine liability to pay the Poor rate (for the support of the poor and destitute within each Poor Law Union). In March 1850, the mill was offered for sale by Thomas Herrick estate upon his death. It was described at the time as being situated in the midst of splendid corn country with a new kiln and 30 acres. The machinery is described as follows: “the machinery and the magnificent over shot wheel and capable of working 15,000 barrels of wheat in the year with an abundance of water even during the driest summer”. In 1940 In 1914 Patrick Howard is listed in Guy’s directory as being the manager of the mill. Howard Bros donated the land on which Crookstown hall is now built. The mill was sold to Boland’s’ a member of the Irish Agricultural Wholesale Society in 1988, at the time it had a turnover of £3million according to the Irish Press Newspaper.
Moviddy – 2.30pm
Síle pick out the salient points
St Helen’s Graveyard
Moviddy has locally been hidden from the local population in Crookstown and apart from it being a mixed graveyard little was known about the church and its history. The graveyard itself gives us an insight in to the historical development of the village through the people buried there. Before 1870 the Church of Ireland was established as the state church. Occupiers with agricultural holdings over one acre had to pay a levy or tithes to the Church of Ireland. The place name Moviddy means “the Plain of the Reeds”. In 1837 Lewis’ Topographical dictionary of Ireland described Moviddy as a parish, in the barony of East Muskerry, 16 miles from Cork, on the road from Macroom to Bandon; containing, with the post-town of Crookstown, 2718 inhabitants. About 80 children are educated in three public schools, of which the parochial schools are principally supported by the rector; a sewing-school, built by Mrs. Rye, is supported by her and other ladies; the other is a national school in the chapel-yard. The Duke of Devonshire pays the curate of Moviddy a stipend for performing the parochial duties. The tithes amount to £750, but have not been paid for forty years.
- The history of St. Helen’s Church:
First we will focus our attention on the ruined building behind us. The last service was held in 1961 and the rood removed by Mr Hornibrook in 1968. There are records of a previous structure in 1699 as follows “Moviddy church in repair. Sermon every Sunday. Sacrament three times a year. As you can see beside me we have the ruinous remains of freestanding double-height Church of Ireland church, built c.1820. Papers relating to the established church in Ireland in 1820 describe a church in Moviddy, and give an over view of the rectory “there was an old thatched residence in Moviddy unfit for residence. The rector is to build immediately, glebe 80 acres annual salary £75. In 1834 the protestant population in Moviddy was 85. The Catholic population 2,758. The church itself is a small, but very neat, edifice, in the early English style, for the repairs of which the Ecclesiastical Commissioners granted £224 towards repairs in 1837. In 1833 Hume Babington became rector of Moviddy and carried out improvements totalling £242 in his time (€166,766 in today’s money) as rector. At this time the church was capable of accommodating 120 people. The sacrament was administered monthly. According to the Cork Examiner of the 13 June 1849 there was a serious theft from the church. “The church of Moviddy was entered at a late hour on the night of Wednesday last, by some persons who have not been detected and the communion cover with some other articles to the value of about 2 guineas taken. The robbery of Protestant Churches and occasionally Roman Catholic Chapels appears to have lately become an object of particular attention to the burglars of this county”.
In 1860 the church and the glebe house were being described as being in good order. The average communicants were 9. Divine service was held on Sunday evenings during summer. There was no school at this time and the protestant population was 47. In August 1867 there was a further fundraising drive with a Bazaar held at Ryecourt to fund church repairs under the patronage of the following ladies: Mrs R T Rye, Mrs Babington and Mrs Herrick. The Cork Constitution of 20 August 1867 gives the following description: This bazaar, the proceeds of which are to be applied to the required repairs of Moviddy church went off satisfactorily. No exertion was wanting on the part of the ladies to induce visitors to purchase the varied articles both ornamental and useful. The company from cork were not numerous although a special train was given for their accommodation by the liberal company of the Cork and Macroom railway. In the 1890’s the church was completely remodelled. We get an interesting visual as to what the church looked like when it was used. In 1903 JH Cole noted that: “Moviddy church was recently improved by substituting very handsome stone mullioned windows for the old plain wooden frames. The old plaster ceiling was replaced by an ornamental one of pitch-pine. The chancel has been raised, and tiled with handsome mosaic, with red marble steps; and other substantial improvements have been carried out, based on designs by W, H. Hill, Esq., C.E. (who designed Cork Courthouse on Washington Street). A very beautiful carved oak pulpit and prayer desk have been dedicated by Mrs. R. R. Warren, of Dublin, in memory of her husband, the late Judge Warren, who was such a generous benefactor to the Church of Ireland. In July, 1903, the Bishop dedicated, in Moviddy Church, a new Holy Table, which was presented by Capt. R. Tonson Rye, D.L., of Ryecourt, in memory of his wife; and, at same time, a very handsome lectern, presented by Somers Payne, B.L., J.P., as a memorial of his father, John Warren Payne-Sheares., D.L. The church itself has a rectangular nave to which was added a semi-circular apse at the east end and a rectangular porch which was entered through a door in the north wall which is now blocked up. The door surround has a rounded arch with a prominent keystone, jambs and arch stones. The base and capital on each side appear reused. The work of skilled craftsmen is visible in its finely carved window and door surrounds.
- Interesting connections:
You may not be aware that where we stand had a connection to Scott’s Antarctic expedition in 1910; the same one Tom Cream was involved in. In fact one of our own parishioners was on it! Let me explain more. Captain Robert Falcon Scott’s final expedition to the Antarctic was the Terra Nova expedition, 1910-1913. 65 accompanied him on that journey and 59 returned. Robert Forde Petty Officer, Royal navy was born in Moviddy, Ireland in 1875. His father’s name was George and his mother’s was Charity (née Payne). He had joined the Royal Navy at the age of 16, rising to the rank of Petty Officer 1st Class. He joined the Terra Nova expedition as Petty Officer on May 30, 1910, at the age of 35. He was part of a group which headed out from Cape Evans in January 1911 to explore the polar caps. Forde and his companions had the responsibility of examining the area around Ross Island and the Polar Plateau. Temperatures dropped as low as -62C leaving Forde to return home due his hand being severely frostbitten. By March 1912 Forde was suffering so badly that he was ordered to the Terra Nova by Captain Scott. His hands were saved and he was brought back to New Zealand in April 1912. As a result, he did not participate on the final and fatal attempt on the South Pole. He was missed deeply by his team. Scott’s logs of the expedition stated that he missed Forde when he was gone – “no one who could replace him,”. He is remembered by the naming of Mount Forde, a monumental peak of over 1,200 metres at the head of the Hunt Glacier in Antarctica in his honour.
- Notable clergy:
The clerical and parochial records of Cork, Cloyne and Ross were compiled by W Maziere Brady, rector of Clonfert Cloyne and chaplain to the lord lieutenant in 1863 and give us a good indication of how Moviddy was perceived prior to disestablishment. The first mention of a Protestant presence in Moviddy that I can find goes back to 1591 where a Nicholas O’Flynn is listed as vicar of Moviddy. He was succeeded by a William Healy in 1615 and remained rector to 1632 where he was deprived of his post or resigned. I cannot find a reference to a physical church building prior to 1697. Brady mentions that Moviddy church underwent repair in 1697 John Wentenhall was archdeacon and rector and the sacrament was received there three times a year with services on Sunday. Seven or eight protestant families were recorded in attendance. In 1694 it was recorded that “some papists married to Protestants bred their children papists”. Moviddy was very forward thinking before penal laws were enforced a year later in 1695. A penal law regarding intermarriage with Protestants was repealed in 1778.
One other interesting rector from this period was Tom St Lawrence. According to Fraser’s magazine for town and country vol 8. July to December 1833. He was listed in 1818 as rector of Moviddy with a protestant population of 31. TG Lawrence held 507 acres at Moviddy, 208 at kilbonane and 379 at aglish. He was known as Mr Tom. It was noted that Mr. Tom preaches six or eight times in a year in Desertmore. Now this gentleman was the eldest son of Dr St Lawrence who was bishop of Cork. This fact will become significant as the story unfolds. According to records the vicar was described as a pleasant fellow, had a sweet voice, a tenacious memory and abounding wit. His fame as a preacher was not confined to his own dioceses having levied in Marseilles and Geneva, He married Miss Grant the daughter of Lady Colthurst Blarney by her 2nd husband. It is stated that this pleasant man finished his life miserably. For the last few unhappy years of his life he lived at Moviddy. His health was bad and his spirits utterly broken. The close of his life darkened by the sorrows of grief.
We find out that this was because of a belief that he got his position out of favouritism or nepotism and that his father created Moviddy Union of Parishes to generate an income for him in 1818. This is highlighted in John Wade, The Black Book: An Exposition of Abuses in Church and State, 1835 it was stated that there were ten promotions of the St. Laurence family. However in the case of Tom this was not the case. A review of the correspondence between the earl of Mount Cashel and the bishop of ferms highlighted the position with St Laurence. The correspondence shows that Lord Mountcashel (Stephen Moore later to sit on the House of Lords) was at once willing to believe any statements that showed the Established church in an unfavourable light and gave them publicity under the sanctions of his name. He stated in relation to unions of parishes: “it was not uncommon to see four, six, aye, seven parishes in the hands of one rector; and why this was so? Because some bishop who has a son, unmindful of the meritous efforts of many ill paid clergy, considered that two or three parishes would not do the young gentleman, but he must get half a dozen”.
He was inclined not to investigate in to the truth of the incident I will describe below which led to the fall of a man’s good name. It was left to the Bishop of Ferns to defend the matter. “Your lordships words signify that the bishop of Cork made that union in that year for his son. Now the fact is that he never made it at all. It appears from returns to parliament in 1806 that the union of Moviddy, Aglish and Kilbonane had existed from time immemorial. The rector also held the parish of inniskenny by episcopal union made in 1768 and the bishop discontinued that union by giving Iniskenny to William Meade. Thus instead of making a union for his son, he broke one that had been made long before and gave part of it to a stranger. Rev Lawrence suffered for the remainder of his time in Moviddy because of the allegations of Lord Mountcashel.
Canon William Thomas Grey He was Rector of Moviddy (Cork) (1921-6). A good sportsman, he is also remembered as the person who introduced Hockey to Japan,
It appears that the may be continuous occupation of Moviddy pre-reformation. In July 1938 a young Tom Callaghan of Bellmount recorded the following observations as part of the schools folklore project. “Many years ago there was a Catholic church and monastery in Crookstown where the present church now stands. In Moviddy graveyard there are the remains of a watchouse. It is here the Protestants at the time forced the Catholics to keep watch when a protestant came to be buried for fear the body might be stolen”
The earliest noted headstone in the graveyard is dated 1764. There is a roofless mausoleum to the East of the church contains a classical wall plaque dated 1719. This is the Bailey vault.
Rev. Hume Babington
According to J.H. Cole, Records of Cork, Cloyne and Ross 1903 the Rev. Hume Babington whose tomb we are standing beside (who came of an old North of Ireland family) married in 1836, Esther, daughter of Richard Nettles, of Nettleville. She died in 1878, Revd. Hume Babington, having been Rector of Moviddy for 53 years, died on the 23rd of January, 1886, aged 81 years. Hume was a very forward thinking individual. In fact he was part of a new wave of idealism in the 1800’s towards non-secular education. In 1866 a progressive booklet called a declaration in favour of united secular education in Ireland was produced by some members of the united Church of England and Ireland. Hume Babington signed it. “We entirely admit the justice and policy of the rule which protects scholars from interference with their religious principles and thus enables members of different denominations, to receive together in harmony and peace, the benefits of a good education”.
Counteracting this was an interesting incident which came to be known as the Crookstown letter. The southern reporter, Cork Examiner and the Cork Commercial Courier covered the incident on 23 December 1843. Usually there were good relations between both Protestestant and Catholic communities in Crookstown until the Rev Hume Babington published the contents of a threatening letter he received in the Cork Constitution under the heading of ‘the Crookstown notice’. Basically the letter supposedly was written by a Catholic resident of Crookstown and it threatened Hume Babington, John Warren and other protestants with murder if they did not become repealers (of the act of union 1801) as well as making a bonfire of fine hay in Hume Babington’s farm yard if he did not show the notice to John Warren.
In response to the letter’s publication the parish priest Fr Daly and parishioners met in Cloughduv church to refute the allegations on the following grounds:
- They were taken aback and disgusted with the allegations made.
- They stated that we must declare it to be our solemn and decided conviction that no Roman Catholic wrote said notice but that on the contrary, we believe it to be the invention of an enemy and a most false and calumnious fabrication.
- They believed the writer to be a local protestant who wrote on the battlements of Crookstown Bridge the words ‘repeal or die’.
- JB Warren one of the magistrates offered to carry out the investigation with the parish priest and the curate. But Hume Babington refused to hand the original letter over.
- “That after such refusal we cannot hesitate to pronounce it’s instant publication in the newspapers on the part of Hume Babington to be prejudiced, premature and defamatory of the character of the people whose industry he derives his income”.
- Based on all the evidence the parish priest declared it to be a forgery.
Hume Babington stated that in publicising the letter he had no intention of offending the parish priest Mr Daly or any of the Roman Catholic parishioners of Moviddy with who he had always been on friendly terms. He was pushed to publish it by some influential magistrates. Suspicion fell on a member of his own congregation but on investigation it was groundless so that led him to believe the writer was Catholic. Hume continued as rector for another 43 years following this incident.
The Herrick family residence was based in Bellmount house. Here we have a tomb dedicated to Frances Herrick, Edward Herrick and Louisa Herrick. Edward Herrick of Bellmount held 669 acres in county Cork and 703 acres in counties Tipperary and Queen’s County combined. He was a magistrate in 1875-76 and served as justice of the peace. The Herrick’s were instrumental in establishing the practice of weasel hunting in Ireland. John Herrick of Bellmount, Crookstown, has been Secretary of the Muskerry Hunt since 1889, the eldest son of: the late Captain Edward Herrick, J.P., of the 12th Foot Regiment, he was born on January 28th, 1862, at Crookstown House, county Cork. He joined the south Cork militia in 1881 and became captain of same, resigning in 1895. He resided at Bellmount house and married Emily Holmes, daughter of Mr. J Holmes, Carrigmore, Co. Cork.
Over here we have a very unusual rectangular building, now inaccessible. This is the Bailey Mausoleum. There is a connection between the Baileys and the Ryes of Ryecourt which I will explore in a moment. The Bailey grave is the oldest in Moviddy dating to 1719. This monument was erected by Mrs. Anne Bailey, widow of John Bailey of Castlemore esq who died the 15th of June 1719. He was a gentleman who always had a true interest of his country at heart. At the revolution he served in person in the wars of Ireland till the kingdom was reduced to peace and quietness, then quitting the wars he returned to his wife and children and shewed himself as good an husband as indulgent a father and he was a true subject. Being honoured with the commission of the peace, he always administered justice so uprightly that he never blemished his commission and died lamented by all good men who knew him”.
In Smith’s ‘the ancient and present state of the County and City of Cork’ We are told that Castlemore Castle 1815 is now in the estate of Mr Rye whose father Colonel Rye married the daughter and heiress of Mr Bailey.
There is a separate grave for the Rye family in Ryecourt but they are also members of the family supposed to be buried here in a vault of which their descendants cannot locate.
There is a William Crooke listed as being buried in Moviddy on 28 June 1817 in the Agabollogue parish records. The table top tomb is to the left of the Bailey Mausoleum. Thomas Crooke d 1768 married Elizabeth Warren and had issue William Crooke. His ancestor took part in the creation of a Plantation in Munster, Cork. He founded an English colony in Baltimore and set up a fishing industry. Thomas Crooke, married Ellen, daughter of Tiege Mac Dermod MacCarthy (Lord of Muskerry) He built a large fortified house, with a fish tank on roof at Crookstown. Smith records Mr Crook of Crookstown in 1751: a mile west of Ryecourt is Incharahill alias Crookstown an old improvement, good gardens and large orchards of cider fruit. To the westward of the house are fine groves of fir. It is now the estate of Mr Crook. The mother of Robert Warren, 1st Baronet, was Anne Crooke and this house may have got its name from her.
A Wilson Crook of Tennessee wrote to a Mrs Hill and indicated the origins of the Cook pedigree. “We are Danes. The ancient family name in Old Scandinavian appears to have been Kruk, meaning “barbed spear” and/or fishing trident. Eventually in the Germanic/Teutonic countries the double-dots became a double-“o”, and today there many listed in the Copenhagen telephone book as Krook; in Malmo, Sweden, across-the-way there are presently 10 listings of Krook; in Germany, there is Krook, Kroock, and Krok (no dots); in the Netherlands you have Krook and Van der Krook. Rollo (or Rolf”) and his crew took Normandy in 896 A.D.; since the King of the Franks couldn’t run him off, he made him Duke of Normandy and mixing with the Franks and absorbing their Roman-derived culture, they people became “Normans”. As they moved into the Latin-influenced cultural arena, there were problems in spelling a name with two “k’s” in an alphabet that had no such. In Belgian Flanders, the name became Crook and along the present French coast it is Croocq/ le Croque. As “Normans” the Crooks came to England in 1066 A.D. In the Domesday Book one is listed as a landholder in “Hanks” (Hamptonshire…today “Southampton”) in SW England; some went to Cornwall and Wales in SW England; a number settled…or later re-concentrated as modern England developed… around London and west towards and around Oxford; there was early a concentration in N England in Westmoreland, Northumberland, and York Cos.–town of Crook today in Durham Co., just below Northumberland; and present town of Crookstown In County Cork of SW Ireland”.
Here we have the grave of Sarah Payne Sheares. The same Sheares that the street in Cork is named after. Erected by her children, in loving memory of Sarah, widow of JW Payne Sheares and eldest daughter of The Rev Robert Warren of Crookstown died 14 November 1907 aged 87. We learn that Mr John Warren Payne Sheares has been appointed to the vacancy on the Board of Directors of the Great Southern and Western Railway, caused by the death of the late Mr J W Murland. 9 July 1890 Cork Constitution involved in plans under architect Hill to re furbish the courthouse. He was also appointed a trustee of the Cork butter market in 16 March 1895. Payne Sheares was chairperson of the cork and Bandon Railway Company. He went for election to parliament in 1898, involved with passage west petty sessions.
Inside the church building where it is not advisable to go is a remaining wall plaque that was not removed which is dedicated to the Warren family. Warren Plaque: RT Hon Robert R Warren, in loving memory, erected by his wife Mary R Warren daughter of Charles Perry Cork 1897 Annual Report of the Poor Law Commissioners for England and Wales, Volume listed as a magistrate. 1911 Robert Warren is listed at incharahilly as being a farmer aged 40, married to a Maria sumley with 2 children, Gladys and Augustus. In 1901 his father Robert is listed as civil engineer, justice of the peace and landowner.
There is a connection between Moviddy and the flight of the earls in 1607. Information on the links to Moviddy are given in Princes of Tyrone From Irish Pedigrees; or the Origin and Stem of the Irish Nation by John O’Hart.
Art O’Neill, alias “Payne:” son of Henry; hereditary Prince of Ulster; born in 1687; was made The O’Neill on May Eve, 1709, at Aileach; and married Kate O’Toole, daughter of Garret O’Toole, of Power’s Court, county Wicklow. This Art lived a roving life, partly in Tyrone, Wicklow, and Cork, and kept large deer-hounds; died in co. Cork, 1732, and was buried. In St. Helen’s, Moviddy, whence his remains were taken to Ardstraw, by his son. Ardstraw is a small village, townland and civil parish in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, three miles northwest of Newtown Stewart. The Moviddy connection is likely because of association with the MacCarthy Mór’s.
Nial: hereditary Prince of Ulster was on the eve of 1st of Nov., 1847, was made Prince of Ulster, he died unmarried in 1859. Soon after some of the Irish in Paris and New York proceeded to elect his successor; and we learn that Mac Carthy Mór and James Talbot took Richard, to London, where he was acknowledged as the future Representative of his Race; and we learn that on May Eve, 1862, in the ruined fort of Aileach, the white wand was put into his hand by Daniel O’Connor, of Manch, and the old Pagan ceremonies were performed, as they were some hundreds of years before, when the chieftains elected “O’Neill.”. This Nial lived in the western part of the county, and in the City of Cork; lived an extravagant life; took a leading part, under various disguises, in political events; sold out to his trustees the remains of the tribe lands in Ulster. The penal laws being in force, his possessions in the South of Ireland were held in trust for him by Protestant friends, many of whom eventually ignored his right, and, taking advantage of the Law, excluded him and his heirs from the head rents. Then he engaged in manufacturing pursuits, by means of the remnant of his property, which proved abortive; finally, he died in 1772, and was buried in Moviddy. In 1780, his remains were removed by his son to Ulster. His successor was his son Richard, was duly elected “The O’Neill,” on May Eve, 1766, and was inaugurated in the old Rath of Tullaghoge, west of Lough Neagh, in Tyrone, by the O’Hagan. This Richard (or Roderic) lost the remainder of the “head rents” of those lands in Co. Cork, which were granted to Henry. He moved to East Carbery, where he died, in 1817, and was buried in Moviddy. He was, during the most part of his life, the rallying point of all the Celtic princes and chieftains of Erinn, as his elected position indicated. His son Robert succeeded him; having married Eleanor Baldwin married into the Baldwin’s of Bandon. Died at Mount Pleasant, and was buried at St. Helen’s, Moviddy, Co. Cork. Robert: second son of Robert; born 1816; m. Jane Anne, daughter. of Richard Wall, of Ardnaclog (Bellmount), parish of Moviddy, county Cork, by his wife Jane “Welply,” or more correctly, Jane Mac Carthy, daughter. of William Mac Carthy Mór, alias “Welply,” of Clodagh Castle. This Richard and his wife Jane had an only daughter Jane- Anne (d. lst July, 1863, aged 41 years), who, in 1840, in the Aghina parish church, married Robert O’Neill (alias ” Payne”). This Jane-Anne was buried at St. Helen’s, Moviddy; and left two sons and two daughters. This Robert died in New Jersey about 1851.
Welpy – MacCarthy Mór
The treaty of Glanmire occurred in 1118, dividing the kingdom of Munster into Desmond and Thomond. The MacCarthy’s were an old Irish clan who held a stronghold which was consolidated with the arrival of Henry 11 in Ireland by whom Tadgh MacCarthy upon his submission was acknowledged as king of Desmond, comprising parts of the modern counties of Cork and Kerry.
For almost five centuries the MacCarthy’s dominated much of Munster, with four major branches: Cormac MacCarthy king of Desmond founded kilcrea abbey in 1465 for the Franciscans and is the burial place of the MacCarthy’s who lived in Blarney castle. The next stronghold was Castlemore and Clodagh. Each of these families continued resistance to Norman and English encroachment up to the seventeenth century when, like virtually all the Gaelic aristocracy, they lost almost everything. An exception was Macroom Castle, which passed to the White family of Bantry House, descendants of Cormac Láidir Mac Cárthaigh.
At the time O’Sullivan Mór always presided at the meetings of the Munster chiefs, even when MacCarthy attended and it was he whose voice made MacCarthy the MacCarthy Mór. The MacCarthy’s continued resistance to Norman and English encroachment up to the seventeenth century when, like virtually all the Gaelic aristocracy, they lost almost everything. During this time they wanted to consolidate their position and a protestant family, the Welpy’s entered the equation.
The 1659 census shows Joseph Welpy owning land near Bandon; John O’Hart in his reports says that Joseph Welply or Guelph arrived from Wales. This may be true and we know from the History of Bandon that there were Welply’s at Bandon, 1597. Dela Welpy married Cormac William McCARTHY [c.1680-1761] in 1710. Dela was the daughter of Joseph Welply; and an heiress. During early Penal times Catholics were not allowed to own property so Cormac, of the McCarthy clan changed his name to Cormac Welply adopting his father in law’s surname and his religion to Protestant in order to get his hands on his wife’s inheritance. Welpy had previously received lands that were under MacCarthy control.
John Mac Carthy (alias Welpy) son of Cormac married Elizabeth Minheer (of a Flemish family) with whom he had three sons and eight daughters. The sons were William, Joseph and John of Bengour who married a Miss Norwood. The daughter’s one married a Sir John Crowe and another to a Walter Philips of Mossgrove. We are going to focus now on William son of John as he is buried here. William now the MacCarthy Mór married Anne Harris of Bandon and on the death of his parents he move to a farm known as Crahalla and later to lower bellmount where he died and died in 1833 aged 91. It is stated he was divested of nearly all of his property. His wife died in 1836 aged 81. Both are buried here in St. Helen’s Moviddy. They had three sons and six daughters one of whom Marmaduke – Duke is also interred here in Moviddy. Marmaduke Welpy 1798-1864 was the second son of William married Jane Uncles of Carbery in 1834 lived in Cork City and is buried in Moviddy.
Due to the inaccessibility of much of the graveyard there are many people’s stories that will never be told. There are some unusual links with our parish to the wider world from Japan to Antarctica! It is very interesting to see that there are descendants of some of the family’s still with us. Found this 17th century rhyme when doing my research. It a reflection as to how the landed classes enjoyed life…
“He that goes to bed, and goes to bed sober,
Falls as the leaves do, and dies in October —
But he that goes to bed, and goes to bed mellow,
Lives as he ought to do, and dies an honest fellow”
Bellmount House – 2.45pm
Síle to decide on salient points……
Bellmount House was known locally as the home of the Herrick Family. It is now home to the Lucey family.
Detached double-pile three-bay two-storey house, built c.1840 according to the national inventory for architectural heritage (but may be considerably earlier going by historical records), having gabled half dormers to front (north). T Herrick esq is described as living there in 1837. Bellmount House has retained many of its notable features and as a result, much of its historic character. Combinations of varied finishes including exposed roughly dressed limestone walls and finely cut limestone window surrounds add textural variation and subtlety enhance the design. In addition to the house, a group of stone outbuildings and the remains of an ornate gate lodge add to its setting and context and are reminders of the scale and grandeur of the estate in the past.
Bellmount House was the residence of Reverend James Crowley in 1814. By 1837 the house was in the ownership of Thomas Herrick who owned Bellmount Mill in Crookstown village. According to an original lease this Thomas Herrick leased land at Gurranamuddagh for a period of 23 ½ years to William Wall on 29th September 1813 for the sum of £84 and 15 shillings per annum.
Following the plantation of Munster the Herricks were granted Roche lands adjacent to Kinsale and Inishannon, County Cork, in the seventeenth century. Herrick was among the names of the adventures for land and Beecher’s settlers who came to the Bandon area at the end of the 16th century, and A Census of Ireland 1659 locates John Herrick at Lissheda, in the Co Cork parish of Leighmoney. Taylor & Skinners 1778 Maps of the Roads of Ireland shows Herrick Esq, at Shippool, also in the parish of Leighmoney. The five listed Herricks in the 1814 Leets Directory are all in Co Cork: at Crookstown Castle, Macroom; at Farnalough, Bandon; at Goldenbush, Innishannon, and at Shippool. According to the Southern Reporter and Cork Commercial Courier of 25 January 1825, John Edward Herrick of Bellmount Barrister at law married Mary, third daughter of the late Thomas Wallis Waterford in Christchurch Cork (now the Triskel arts centre). They were married by the Reverend Christmas Paul Wallace.
On 2 January 1850 on the death of a Thomas Herrick on the instructions of the executor Henry Herrick Inishannon, Pennington’s auctioneers offered the household contents of the highest including a piano and livestock for sale including 40 in calf heifers. There were two farms, one called high heart run as a dairy in Clodagh and the other Knuckenarue, Bellmount.
In the Irish Ecclesiastical Gazette of 23 November 1870 we note that on 27 October 1870 in Moviddy church, Anne Babington eldest daughter of the Rev. Hume Babington married the Rev. George Herrick Esq, the eldest son of Henry Herrick Upper Bellmount. The bride’s brother Richard Babington conducted the ceremony. He became the incumbent of Iniscarra while still living in Bellmount and subsequently married an Ada Wall from Queens County (Laois) on 10 October 1879.
In 1876 Henry Herrick, Bellmount, Cork, had 703 acres in Co Tipperary and Capt Edward Herrick, also at Bellmount, had 677 in Co Cork, according to Owners of Land of One Acre and Upwards. The other six listed Herrick holdings were also in Co Cork. Topping them was the 3,389 acres of Thomas B. at Shippool, Bandon. Henry Herrick and John E. Herrick (both buried in Moviddy) held land in the barony of East Muskerry parishes of Inchigeelagh, Kilbonane and Moviddy. Edward Herrick of Bellmount held 669 acres in county Cork and 703 acres in counties Tipperary and Queen’s County combined. He was a magistrate in 1875-76 and served as justice of the peace. In April 1938 as part of the schools folklore project, Denis Bradfield gives the following account of the Herricks: “George Herrick was the landlord for the tenants in Upper Bellmount; he was a bad landlord for he evicted a poor woman and her son off their land because they could not pay their rent. A hut was put up front for them by the land league party and it was called the land league house”.
Closely associated with the Muskerry Hounds, was John Herrick, Crookstown, who had been Secretary of the Hunt since 1889, the eldest son of: the late Captain Edward Herrick, J.P., of the 12th Foot Regiment, he was born on January 28th, 1862, at Crookstown House. Beginning to ride in 1874, he joined the Muskerry Hunt under the then Master, Captain Woodley. He was educated at Galway Parsonstown Grammar school and Trinity College, leaving in 1883. He married Emily Frances, daughter of Mr. J Holmes, of Carrigmore Co Cork. After his marriage he moved into Bellmount house. He joined the South Cork Militia in 1881, becoming its captain and resigning in 1895.Whilst in the Herrick ownership (to the 1940’s) the estate was home to the Muskerry Hounds. The lodge housed the Muskerry pack of hounds and the original kennels adjoin the courtyard. Now I know many of you are used to hearing about drag hunts but how many of you heard of a weasel hound? In country life magazine from May 1911 the unusual contribution of Herrick to the Irish hunting scene is noted. “Packs of weasel hounds are so rare in their existence is but little known and mention of them causes general surprise. The one of which I now write of called the Bellmount beagles was formed in 1897 when fox hunting was stopped in the Muskerry country of county Cork. The first were established originally from an existing pack belonging to Captain Sarsfield at Cork. The Bellmount Beagles were a private family pack, the master of whom was Captain Herrick, taking no subscription and the kennels being close to his house in Crookstown County Cork. They are indeed of a diminutive and engaging appearance and to make pets of them must be practically irrestible”.
In the Highland light infantry chronicle circa 1910 consternation was caused by two army officers in the UK who wanted to use their annual leave to attend a weasel hunt in Bellmount. In this magazine weasel hunts were described as follows: “Great consternation in the orderly room was caused and a record created in the leave book by two officers applying for leave for the purposes of weasel hunting. In the Muskerry country and owned by the secretary of the fox hunt is a pack of small beagles who during summer and autumn months hunt stoats. The meets are advertised and generally a field of 25 men and women turn out to meet the 10 couple weasel pack. The hunt lasts 3 hours.”
In the 1901 census the following occupants are listed in Bellmount House:
John EH Herrick aged 39, Church of Ireland Landowner and farmer
His spouse Frances E Herrick aged 39, Church of Ireland, no occupation
Margrette Herrick, aged 65 – John’s mother
There are only 3 servants listed:
John Carroll aged 41, Church of Ireland, servant, groom and coachman
Hannah Desmond aged 20, Roman Catholic, cook and domestic servant
Kate Leary aged 18, Roman Catholic, servant and parlour maid.
In March 1843 Emily Fanny Herrick widow, sold the land to Thomas Wilson, Farmer, Bellmount. On 11 December 1883, John Herrick was to assume the land at Bellmount which was held in trust for him as a marriage settlement by his mother Margretta until the solemnisation of his marriage to Emily Holmes. As part of the settlement, if Emily was to outlive him (and she did) she was to receive a yearly rent charge of £200 subject to the use of the land by and surviving sons and subsequent daughters. Margretta Herrick died on 8 October 1911 and John Edward Henry Herrick died on 24 November 1924 leaving only his wife Emily and his brother Robert Warren Herrick his heir. Robert Herrick did not execute his claim over the land and since there was no quarrel with the validity of the marriage she assumed title to the land.
Bellmount Gate lodge
The gate lodge was originally built as a mill house on the banks of a small river. It was later redeveloped as a gate lodge for the nearby Bellmount House.
The lodge is a detached gable-fronted three-bay two-storey over basement gate lodge, date 1837, having three-storey elevation to rear (south). Single-storey extensions to side (west) elevation. Now ruinous. Roof now missing, having tooled limestone gable copings with carved limestone finials, inscribed date to front (north) finial. Although now in a state of ruin, this fine gate lodge is still highly visible and impressive. Its Gothic-Revival character is apparent in the oriel windows and carved finials. It adds to the setting and context of Bellmount House and is an attractive roadside feature.
A painting of Bellmount Gate Lodge was painted by the watercolour artist Robert Lowe Stopford (1813-1898) in 1855. This is now in possession of the Lucey family and hangs in Bellmount House. According to the reverse of the painting “Bellmont had belonged to the same family. Their house was in the old cattle sheds. When they heard that Cromwell’s soldiers were coming they dug a huge hole, buried their wonderful silver. They knew the butler who helped them might tell people about it so they shot him, buried him with the silver. They gave very valuable old communion silver to Moviddy Church.” The communion silver is still in Moviddy union of Parishes – St Mark’s Aherla.
This was the site of the Rectory for Moviddy Parish which was demolished c. 1970s. Prior to the stone Rectory, there was a house with thatched roof.
A soup kitchen was set up at this cross during The Famine period.
Derives its name from the pound which existed here for holding farm animals for the fairs.
This castle was built by Norman settlers the DeCogans who built a fortress at Castlemore prior to 1187. This was on the site of an earlier settlement Dundrinane (Draighnean’s Fortress).They populated the eastern half of the Lee valley and also had a fortified stronghold build at Carrigrohane. This castle was the main stronghold of the MacCarthy-Mórs having previously been held by the MacSweeneys (the same family which held Clodagh Castle). This castle was also known as Dundrinan came in to the possession of the MacCarthys in the 15th century and became one of their main seats in Muskerry. MacSweeneys were listed as its chief warders in the 16th century. Charles Smith in the Antient and present state of the county and city of Cork in 1774 states that as a result of the 1641 rebellion the castle and lands were forfeit by Phelim Owen McCarthy and by the late 1600s the castle was now the residence of John Bayly (buried in the Bailey vault in Moviddy cemetery Crookstown). In the late 1700’s the castle was described as being in repair and was inhabited by a Mr Travers. It previously belonged to John Bailey and is now the estate of Mr Rye whose father Colonel Rye married the daughter and heiress of Mr Bailey. There was supposed to be a church at Dundrinane but this name and evidence of same is not present in the visitation books after 1639.
**The Irish Rebellion of 1641 began as an attempted coup d’état by Irish Catholic gentry, who tried to seize control of the English administration in Ireland to force concessions for Catholics. The coup failed and the rebellion developed into an ethnic conflict between native Irish Catholics on one side, and English and Scottish Protestant settlers on the other. This began a conflict known as the Irish Confederate Wars. The roots of the 1641 rebellion lay in the failure of the English State in Ireland to assimilate the native Irish elite in the wake of the Elizabethan conquest and plantation of the country. Unfavourable economic conditions also contributed to the outbreak of the rebellion. The Irish economy had hit a recession and the harvest of 1641 was poor.
Castlemore Quarry has functioned as a limestone quarry for at least 400 years and likely for centuries before that. It has been operated during the past four centuries by the Bayley and Rye families until the late 1950s when it closed for a short period before being reopened in the early 1960s by Con MacSwiney and Terry Lynch who operated the business for the next four decades until it became part of the Roadstone Group who operate it today.
The limestone in Castlemore is renowned for its quality and the vein of limestone is believed to run all the way to Cork City and includes the caves at Ovens and Carrigrohane.
A temporary exhibition on the Stone, Sand & Gravel Industries of the Bride Valley is taking place at Kilmurry Museum and being officially opened by Mr. Richard Wood on Saturday 7th October at 2pm and every Sunday for the month of October from 2pm to 5pm. We hope you can come along to what promises to be a very interesting exhibition on the social and industrial history of the Bride Valley.
Ryecourt – 3.15pm to 3.30pm
Síle to pick out salient points…..
The history of the Rye family and Ryecourt is recorded in an unpublished document by Mr Eudo Tonson Rye now deceased and buried here at Ryecourt. The Ryes believe they are of Norman descent. Although the descent has not been proved with certainty, it does seem possible. William the conquer was warned that his enemies were near and prepared to kill him. Leaping on to a horse William rode off alone, till he came to the hamlet of Rye where lived Hubert Rye and his family. The pursuers were foiled and ever afterwards William seems to have greatly favoured Hubert and his family. Hubert‘s four sons fought at the Battle of Hastings and the name Rye appears in the roll of Battle Abbey. Hubert‘s eldest son became Governor of Nottingham Castle and held 36 manors, including Whitwell in Derbyshire. The family continued to own and live in the manor of Whitwell until 1583 when Edward Rye sold the property. It is thought Edward‘s son John appeared in Youghal in 1590.
The Ryes were not Cromwellian settlers but came under the protectorate of Richard Boyle Earl of Bandon. Ryecourt is described as the seat of the Rye family in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. Charles Smith in the Antient and present state of the county and city of Cork in 1774 describes Ryecourt as ‘a handsome house and improvement of the late ingenious Colonel George Rye and is now inhabited by his son. A John Bayley settled in Castlemore in 1667 and his daughter Anne married the aforementioned George Rye who had been mayor of Cork and Castlemore passed into the hands of the Rye Family when her father John Baily died in 1719 (buried in Baily vault Moviddy, she was his only surviving child). George built a 3 storey Georgian house nearby. They had one son John in 1720 a barrister, who published a book called ‘considerations on agriculture’. Besides good gardens and orchards. John raised and planted many thousands of oaks and other forest trees within a few years and was a great improver of several branches of agriculture. In the garden are fine arbutus trees which bear fruit” (according to Lewis 1837) of this John Rye it was believed that his wife Elizabeth Meade was an illegitimate daughter of Lord Riversdale and had no relationship to the Revd. Percy Meade whose name she bore. Tonson was the name of the Riversdale family. John married Elizabeth Tonson Meade of Kinsale in 1758. Her wedding to John Rye was widely reported. The London papers remarked that it was unusual that neither the bride‘s father or mother was present at the wedding, and that she was given away by Lord Riversdale, who gave her a wedding present of £10,000. When her first son was born she insisted that the name Tonson be added, so the Ryes have been Tonson Ryes ever since.
John Rye also established the Muskerry hounds. The first record of foxhunting in the province is contained in a letter dated January 12, 1742, from John Rye, of Rye Court, to Benjamin Sweet, of Greenville, saying what a good day’s hunting he had had on the 11th, and would Mr. Sweet please dine with him on the 13th. It is also established that Mr. John Tonson Rye kept hounds at the family home from 1780 to 1797. John using the wealth Elizabeth brought with her purchased Kilcrea land and abbey in 1773 and enlarged the settlement at Ryecourt. He had two sons, Richard Tonson Rye in 1770 and George in 1772. Richard was a solider with the 3rd dragoon guards in Clonmel and took over Ryecourt in 1776.
The son of John Tonson Rye, Richard, married Mary Baldwin. ―He had been educated privately and at home and went to T.C.D. but left without obtaining a degree. From an early age he showed a great addiction to horses and hunting and was soon a most accomplished horseman. When he was in his teens his childless uncle George, the owner of a large property called Kilcondy, promised to leave him this property provided he could ride over a certain line of country within a laid down time and do it alone. He completed this test without difficulty and in due course received the property. Richard Rye inherited 15,000 acres from his uncle at Ryemount and Kilcondy and in addition he inherited a vast property profile from his father including the “North Liberties of Cork, Kilcrea and Ryecourt”. Mary Baldwin married a larger-than-life character, Capt. Richard Tonson Rye of Rye Court on 30 December 1845. In a marriage settlement Henry Baldwin gave his daughter Mary ―the sum of £750 part of £3080 charged on lands of Granshoonig or Mossgrove. It is stated that 250 members of the families of labourers employed on the Rye Court Estate sat down to a very good substantial dinner given by their benevolent master Capt. Richard Tonson Rye on his marriage to Miss Baldwin of Mount Pleasant, Bandon. All kinds of good cheer abounded. A huge bonfire blazed all day before the principal entrance to the mansion. All present prayed for the happiness of their benefactor and his beautiful bride.
At the age of 21Richard Tonson Rye became Joint Master of the Muskerry Hounds and in 1843 became Sole Master and hunted the country at his own expense for the next 35 years. As a person he was autocratic and hot-tempered. He had acquired his military title in 1860 by founding the South Cork Militia, and he was known throughout SW Cork as ‘The Captain’. His autocratic and hot-tempered ways were not resented by the local peasantry among whom he was very popular. Never once during all the agrarian troubles did he ever evict a tenant. He was High Sheriff of Cork in 1853. At the time of Griffith’s Valuation Richard Tonson Rye’s estate was in the parishes of Aglish, Athnowen, Kilmurry and Moviddy, barony of East Muskerry. In the 1870s he owned 3,412 acres in County Cork. He devoted a significant amount of time to the management of his estates, which became renowned as “the main centre of hunting between the Bandon and Bride Valleys”. The period before the land war in the 1880’s was “regarded by some as the golden age of Ryecourt”. A large contingent of sportsmen hunted with the Muskerry and other packs in Co. Cork, and Irish hunters were at a premium on both sides of St. George’s Channel. A year later hunting was impossible there. The Land League had stepped in and with the rise of agrarian crime and tensions in the locality it was noted that in December 1881 “hunting became impossible and the entire pack of hounds sold and expelled to France “by Capt. Tonson Rye in order to save them from ‘the brutalities of hired mobs from the city of Cork’.
When quite an old man he got into trouble through shooting in the leg a man who was trespassing on his property and who argued with him. At the height of the land war in West Cork, in the midst of an atmosphere of boycotting, widespread evictions and agrarian agitation an extraordinary event occurred, an event which gained notoriety in both the local and national media. The event in question was the shooting of a labourer Jeremiah Corcoran by Captain Richard Tonson Rye, Member of Bandon Board of Guardians, Justice of the Peace, Captain of the South Cork Militia and Deputy Lieutenant for Cork County. How Captain Tonson Rye, himself a bastion of law and order and a person of perceived impeccable moral standing found himself in this position is a matter of debate. Jeremiah Corcoran returning home at 5 pm that evening was availing of a short cut though the Ryecourt Demesne when he was stopped by Capt. Rye bearing a shotgun. Corcoran alleged that Capt. Rye confronted him and threatened to shoot him with the utterance “by – I’ll shoot you”, and he responded by stating “Oh don’t sir, it’s bad to shoot anyone; for God’s sake don’t shoot me”. According to Corcoran’s statement he proceeded to run and Captain Rye shot him in the back, he continued to run but a subsequent discharge from the rifle lodged in the back of his knees and rendered him lame. A few years earlier a £5 note would have settled the affair but now it was the 1890s and Home Rule was in the air. The man took him to Court and the Captain was sentenced to a month in gaol which he served in Cork. He lived in prison in some style, having his meals sent in from a hotel and receiving a host of visitors. He was even seen at the Theatre in the company of the Governor of the prison. The Cork Constitution stated in 1890 “his presence was sadly missed on Sunday last at Moviddy Church where he reads the lessons every Sunday in a most impressive and effective manner and a deep feeling of sorry manifestly pervaded the entire congregation”. He received early release as the governor was concerned for his health. His wife Mary died in 1898, aged 70, but, active till the end, the Captain lived until 1907 when he died aged 88.There is a memorial tablet in Templemartin Church dedicated to both of them. Ryecourt then fell to his son John Baily Tonson Rye known as Jack who married a Madeline dancer in 1876. It is stated that on moving to Ryecourt in 1907 on the death of the Captain, they purchased a motor car and installed three bathrooms! They had three sons Richard, Reginald and Hubert.
The eldest, Richard, was a professional soldier who was in the South Cork Militia; Reginald was a Major in the Supply Corps while the youngest brother, Lieutenant-Colonel Hubert Tonson Rye served in the Royal Munster Fusiliers. Reginald died of Spanish flu in 1919 before his return home. Reginald and Hubert married and had a son each. John was only 9 when his father and grandfather died. His mother returned home to Bath afterwards. He moved to Cork aged 21. Ryecourt was burnt on 6 June 1921 during the War of Independence the same week that Crookstown, Warrenscourt and Macroom castle were destroyed.
The entrance gates to Ryecourt date from circa 1800 These gates, railings, piers and lodge are superbly designed and executed, and are indicative of the grandeur of the estate within. The classical motifs, particularly seen in the gate lodge and piers, demonstrated the taste of the owners and their awareness of contemporary architectural fashions. The craftsmanship involved in cutting, carving, and finishing is considerable and displays the skill of talented craftsmen. The pediment gable is repeated in the breakfront of the outbuildings.
A farmyard complex which forms an interesting group of buildings that are of fine architectural design. Formerly associated with the now demolished Ryecourt House, they are indicative of the grandeur of the main house which they served. Architectural design and detailing elevates these buildings above ordinary outbuildings, and though now in poor condition, they retain much of their original character. Together with the surviving entrance sweep, they are reminders of the scale and wealthy of Ryecourt House in the past.
Cloughduv and the Michael Collins Connection
Collins convoy followed straight on rather than taking the Kilmurry route at Beal na Blath. They intended travelling to Crookstown where Dalton would try and get a priest. Taking a right turn they wound their way until they reached the outskirts of a village which they thought was Crookstown. It in fact turned out to be Cloughduv.
They knocked on Fr Tim Murphy’s door; the curate came as far as the railings and took a look at the body of Collins. Dalton shouted out, ‘Michael Collins has been shot; I want you to help us’. The priest turned his back to walk away. As he did so, O’ Connell pointed the gun at his back, released the clip and discharged. Dalton tilted it skyward the shot discharged. Had Dalton not jerked the gun, the priest would have been shot.
Dalton and O’ Connell had believed that the priest sympathies lay with the anti-Treaty side. The priest in fact turned his back to retrieve his oils to perform the last rites. Years later Emmet Dalton and his brother Charlie went back to Crookstown to find the church, but what they found was all overgrown. In the confusion and shock on the night Collins was killed, his men still thought the church had been in Crookstown. It was Moviddy Church they visited but they should have gone to Cloughduv.
Old School Cloughduv
Built in 1887 at a cost of £800, receiving a grant of £533 from the Board of Education. The school opened on the 14th May 1887. The first Headmaster was William Leahy who received an annual salary of £53 and the first Headmistress was Mrs. Anne Lynch with an annual salary of £37. So gender inequality in pay is not a new phenomenon! Enrolled in 1887 were 117 boys and 87 girls. A beautifully engraved silver trowel which was used to lay the foundation stone of the school was presented to Kilmurry Museum by Rosaleen Rye whom we are very glad to welcome on our tour today.
Kilbonane and St. Mark’s Church Aherla – 3.40pm
In 1903 in Cole’s records of the Diocese of Cork, Cloyne and Ross, Capt. R. Tonson Rye, D.L., of Ryecourt, is described as the owner of the rectorial tithes of Kilbonane parish, his title dating back to the year 1667, and noted as the landlord of the glebe lands of the parish. Proposed plans for a new church in Kilbonane were published in the ‘Irish Builder’ journal of September 1897.
In the Cork Constitution of Wednesday August 19, 1896 a description was given of a garden fete and Bazaar organised in the grounds of Warrenscourt house with the purpose of fundraising for the replacement of Kilbonane Church. The event was opened by the Countess of Bandon. The constitution stated ‘the object of the Bazaar is one that must appeal to all classes in the community”. The original church at the time following Episcopal Visitation by Bishop Meade was seen to be unsuitable for worship. The original building cost £60 in 1834 and was built by way of public subscription. The bishop noticed that a handsome modern church at Aglish nearby was closed for a number of years and suggested that the church be taken down and re-erected near the site of the present church at the time. The parishioners carried out his wishes and held a two day bazaar to fundraise.
On the 26th of June, 1901, the Bishop of the diocese Edward Meade consecrated a new church in the parish of Kilbonane, in Moviddy Union of Parishes. It was built partly on the site of the old one (which was built in 1834), which was taken down, being unfit for worship. The cut limestone of the late Aglish church was used in the erection of the new church at Kilbonane, which was described as a very pretty structure, after the design of W. H. Hill, Esq., (he same individual who designed cork Courthouse) built mainly by the generosity of Thomas. Clarke, Esq., J.P., of Farren House, and Allerton Hall. Liverpool, the foundation stone having been laid about a year before by Mrs. Clarke. A handsome carved oak pulpit, in memory of the late William. Clarke, Esq., was presented by his grandchildren; and the remainder of the church furmiture and requisites were donated by Mrs. Clarke.
War memorial: The war memorial we have to Richard Webb Barter is the only one we have in our parish. Elizabeth J Barter was born circa 1861 in Co Cork, she married Richard H Barter circa 1886, and she was listed in the 1911 census living at Aherla Beg, Kilbonane, County Cork. She gave birth to one surviving child: Richard as per the census of 1901 and 1911 respectively. Richard’s father, Richard H.Barter also leased land from Robert Atkin Rogers at Aherla-Beg, Kilbonane. The Barters are listed on the 1901 census as Richard 45 land proprietor, wife Lizzie 40, son Richard 10 and Aunt Eliza Madras. They had one domestic servant Margarat Conner. Richard was a substantial landholder as he is listed as landlord to 6 families on the house and buildings census return form. In 1911 the 20 year old Richard Jr. is listed as a farmer’s son.
Richard’s obituary in the Cork Examiner of 15 October 1915 states “On Oct. 9th, in France from wounds received in action, Richard Webb Barter. Irish Guards, only son of the late Richard Hayes Barter and Mrs. Barter, Annesgrove, Aherla, Co. Cork”. Richard was not the only person to lose his life in WW1, there was a total of 16 from this parish.
According to the source documentation “The Committee of the Irish National War Memorial Ireland’s Memorial Records 1914-1918” and Rudyard Kipling’s “The Irish Guards in the Great War vol 2” Richard is listed as being killed in action at the Battle of loos while serving as private with regimental number 7463 in the 2nd battalion of the Irish guards. According to British military records he died serving in France and Flanders and originally enlisted in Macroom Co. Cork. He was awarded the British War Medal and Victory Medal. He is listed as having died in France at 33 on 8 October 1915 having served in the rank of Private. Richard was only 24 at the time of his death. He is buried in Bethune Town Cemetery in France. Grave IV E 99. It was noted in the Irish Independent; July, 1916; The Churchwardens and congregation attached to Kilbonane Church, Cork, have decided to place a memorial tablet in the building to the late Mr Richard Webb Barter, killed in action in France. He is recorded in the National Roll Of Honour 1914-1921
According to Rudyard Kipling whose son served in the Irish Guards Regiment. “Officially, the formation of the 2nd Battalion of the Irish Guards dates from the 15th July 1915, when it was announced that His Majesty the King had been “graciously pleased to approve” of the formation of two additional Battalions of Foot Guards—the 4th Grenadier Guards, and the 2nd Battalion Irish Guards, which was to be made up out of the personnel of the 2nd (Reserve) Battalion. By summer of ’15 the tide of special reserve officers was towards its flood, and the 2nd Battalion was largely filled by them. They hailed from every quarter of the Empire, and represented almost every profession and state of life in it, from the schoolboy of eighteen to the lawyer of forty odd. Just where the Battalion lay, our front line was two hundred yards from the enemy—too far for hand-bombing, but deadly for artillery and machine-gun work. Our artillery was declared to be more numerous and powerful than the German, which generally showered our supports and reserves with shrapnel, while machine-guns kept down the heads of the front line with small-arm fire. No one really thought that they would be attacked, possibly for the reason that such a thing had not happened to them personally before. “You see, we had lost count of time—even of the days of the week. Every day seemed as long as a year, and I suppose we considered ourselves like aged men—prisoners of Chillon, you know. We didn’t think anything could happen.”Three were killed and 19 wounded in Richard’s battalion in the three days surrounding his death.
Síle speaks about the Barters