Townlands in Claregalway parish

Cathair Ghabhain nó Páirc an tSamhraidh (Fort of the blacksmith or calves)

Cahergowan is unusual in that it had two official names, Summerfield and Cahergowan. Both are used but Cahergowan would be used more frequently. This townland is large and has always been heavily populated. The river Clare separates it from the townland of Claregalway and it stretches along the N17 as far as Pollaghrevagh and on the western side it adjoins Montiagh South.

Clogher or Clochár is an old name that indicates a monastic settlement. The Taylor and Skinner road map of 1777 shows Summerville Blake Esq. as the occupant of the big house. At the back of the ball alley there is an old ruin of a church and this was used as a burial ground until recently. There are two pubs and three shops in Cahergowan. The land is mainly arable with some outcrop of rock and hazel and some low-lying land that is liable to flooding. There is also some bog but no turf is cut there now.

Near Hessions shop, an old mile stone stands which is engraved with the figure ‘5’, indicating that this spot is five Irish miles from Eyre Square, Galway.

  • Area 841 acres 0 roods 25 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £384 13s 0d
  • Landlord Lord Clanmorris
  • Population in 1851 472 people in 89 houses
  • Family names Boyle, Burke, Clanmorris, Cody, Cogwell, Conor, Corcuit, Cullinan, Donoghue, Duffy, Duggan, Egan, Fahy, Flaherty, Flesk, Ford, Fox, Gobbobs, Hession, Holland, Hughes, Joyce, Kelly, Lenihan, Lynskey, Moloney, Moran, Murphy, Prendergast, Tully, Walsh and Wren
  • Placenames Clogher, Casuala, Carrow Keel, Páircín na bPoll, Poll na gCapall, Tobar Padraic*, Cnocán Droighnean, Cúinne na Sceach, Cnocán Lurghan and Garaide an Uisce

*Tobar Padraic refers to an actual tobar or spring well that was located behind Dunleavy’s shop

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Cathair Líath (The grey fort)

Caherlea is one of the smaller townlands and it adjoins Lisheenavalla (which is in the Lackagh parish). Land is mainly good and suitable for all kinds of farming. Taking the Irish translation of Cathair Líath to be a grey stone fort would indicate that there was some ruins or fortress in the area at one time but no visible evidence has been found.

  • Area 147 acres 3 roods 36 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £39 0s 0d
  • Landlord H. Lynch
  • Population in 1851 44 people in 6 houses
  • Family names Collins, Duggan, Fox, Kerrigan and Melody

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Cairn Mór (Great heap of stones)

Carnmore is at the extreme eastern side of the parish adjoining Athenry along the Monivea Road where Johnny Greaney now lives. The land is mainly good.

The boundary between the Barony of Dunkellin and the Barony of Clare went through the east end of Carnmore (about where Greaney Glass is now). Farmers who had their land in the Clare Barony were counted as being in Carnmore West, those whose land straddled the boundary and had some in each Barony were counted as being in Carnmore East while those who had all their land in the Barony of Dunkellin were counted as being in just Carnmore.

  • Area 180 acres 3 roods 24 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £19 10s 6d
  • Landlord Valentine Blake
  • Population in 1851 12 people in 2 houses
  • Family names Kenny and Rabbitt
  • Placenames Gortaleasa

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Cairn Mór (Great heap of stones)

Carnmore is at the extreme eastern side of Claregalway parish adjoining Lackagh and Athenry parishes. The land here is of mixed quality. There is a turlough in the area and remains of a small lisheen. Some stone tools were discovered in this area a few years ago.

There were traces of an old village in Foxes land near Hynes house and on the night of the big wind in 1839 the storm played havoc with the houses and a few years later the Famine put an end to what houses remained.

  • Area 221 acres 3 roods 25 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £7 18s 0d
  • Landlord Valentine Blake
  • Population in 1851 24 people in 5 houses
  • Family names Fox, Hynes, Rooney and Veitch
  • Placenames Sean Bhaile Beag and Lochán Buí

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Cairn Mór (Great heap of stones)

Carnmore West is the largest townland in the parish, stretching from the airport to Greaney Glass and lies between Glenascaul and Lydacan. In this townland is the airport, school, community centre, and GAA pitch. The land is of good quality. There is a souterrain in the area and a number of ringforts.

There is also a lisheen within the townland, in Eddie Hanley’s field, and was used as a burial ground for adults as well as children until about 1950. The lisheen is sited within a ringfort. There was also a Mass rock in this field but it was moved many years ago. While Mass was being said in secret during Penal times, there used to be a man on guard to look out for the authorities. This field is one of the highest points in the parish from which there is a marvellous view. According to the old people if you had good eyesight you could see seven counties from that point—presumably on a clear day.

The remains of Cloch Maol castle can still be seen. There are burials around this castle where according to local tradition Seán agus trifichead Seán are buried. There is also a monument of stones similar in form to a fort nearby.

  • Area 2041 acres 3 roods 29 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £359 12s 6d
  • Landlord Valentine Blake
  • Population in 1851 348 people in 63 houses
  • Family names Beatty, Behan, Burke, Butler, Carr, Cavanagh, Collins, Costello, Egan, Fahy, Finnegan, Ford, Fox, Grealish, Hanley, Higgins, Holland, Holmes, Hynes, Kelly, Kenny, Lardner, Linskey, Mahon, Morris, Quinn, Rabbitt, Rooney, Ruane, Rushe, Small and Walsh
  • Placenames Bearna an tSalann, Boithrín Tobar Nua, Caher, Clais Bhrein, Cloch Maol, Cnocán Dorethy, Cuinne Geal, Gortaleasa, Páirc Garbh and Páirc na Rásaí

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Baile Chláir (Town of the plain)
Once known as Clare-yn-Dowl

The Claregalway townland stretches from the Claregalway bridge to the Garda barracks and westward along the river as far as Gortcloonmore. The village of Claregalway itself does not lie within this townland. The parish name was taken from this townland possibly because the original church was located on the grounds of the 13th century Franciscan Friary, one of the main landmarks in the area. Claregalway’s present-day graveyard surrounds the ruins of the Friary. A short distance from the Friary stands Claregalway Castle, overlooking the Clare River. The Nine Arches bridge also lies within the Claregalway townland. A new landmark is the SMA House opposite the Friary.

Cloonbiggen is a better known name for part of Claregalway townland. A reference exists in an article about the Friary in 1837 when six acres of land in Cloynbiggan were given to the friars.

There is also a small river, which rises from a spring near Loughgeorge, and it flows through Cloonbiggen into the Clare River. There are some spring wells in this area also. One is known as Tobar Dubh. The land is mainly good but some of it is low lying and liable to flooding in winter.

The origin of the name Claregalway is not clear. Variations used in the past include ‘Baile an Chláir’ meaning ‘Town of the Plank,’ (used for crossing the river) and ‘Town of the Plain.’ Baile Chláir na Gaillimhe is a direct translation of Claregalway and has been in use for the last eighty years.

  • Area 585 acres 0 roods 0 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £228 0s 0d
  • Landlord Lord Clanmorris
  • Population in 1851 133 people in 19 houses
  • Family names Allen, Byrne, Casserly, Duggan, Finnerty and Ryan
  • Placenames Cloonbiggen, Móinín Ríbeach, Léana, Cúinne Cam, Bóithrín Ó Kane and Bóithrín Lachach

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Clochán (Stepping stone)

Cloughaun townland is the smallest townland in the parish. In reality the townland is divided between the parishes of Claregalway and Lackagh. The roads to Liscananaun and Baunmore from Baunmore Cross divide the townland and parishes. The land here is of mixed quality. There are no traces of any historical monuments in the townland in the present day.

  • Area 11 acres 1 roods 39 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £9 10s 0d
  • Landlord James S Lambert
  • Population in 1851 21 people in 4 houses
  • Family names Golding, Nolan and Rabbitt

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Cluain (Meadow)

Cloon is situated two miles from Claregalway village on the west side of the N17. It lies between the townlands of Cloonacauneen and Pollaghrevagh, which are separated by a byroad, with Cloon lying to the left as you go into the area. Most people living along the boundary however, would use Cloon as their address.

The land within Cloon is classed as 233 acres being bog-land and the remaining 207 acres is fertile land suitable for all types of farming.

  • Area 440 acres 3 roods 7 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £100 4s 0d
  • Landlord James Ffrench
  • Population in 1851 187 people in 27 houses
  • Family names Concannon, Connor, Davock, Earner, Fahy, Feeney, Flesk, Garvey, Higgins, Kelly, Mannion, Moran, Reilly and Wall

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Cluain Mhic Cáinín (Meadow of the dust specks)

There is another townland of the same name in the Castlegar parish and both join at the top of Holmes’ Hill. There is only one house there now. The land is of mixed quality. It lies next to the Cloon townland and the N17.

  • Area 29 acres 0 roods 16 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £13 5s 0d
  • Landlord Robert Faire
  • Population in 1851 41 people in 5 houses
  • Family names no records
  • Placenames Holmes’ Hill

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Creig Buí (Yellow rock)

Baile Fanach (Bally Faunagh) is an old name for Cregboy and there is evidence of it being used in 1847. It was used by the teachers of Claregalway School up until 1960. There are several definitions in the dictionary for ‘fanach’ such as ‘aimless’, ‘wandering’ and ‘futile’. Gort na Guailliní is the old name of the part of Cregboy that joins Lydacan. It is defined as ‘fields with triangles’.

Cregboy is situated off the N17 and extends from the Claregalway/Oranmore road as far as the Kiltulla road. The land is of mixed quality. Some very good and dry, suitable for all kinds of farming and some rocky out-crops with hazel.

The first milestone in the Parish was standing near Ruane’s house, near the Kiltulla road, but was removed from there by the County Council. It was re-erected in 1998 at a different location nearby. This stone is inscribed with the figure ‘4’, indicating four Irish miles from Eyre Square, Galway.

  • Area 676 acres 0 roods 8 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £222 6s 0d
  • Landlord James Galbraith
  • Population in 1851 176 people in 31 houses
  • Family names Boyle, Burke, Casserly, Tully, Hession, Corenit, Maloney, McDonagh, Morris, Murphy, Quinn, Samways, Daly, Heany, Moran, Long, Giles, Connolly, Wade, Kearns and Kelly
  • Placenames Baile Fanach, Gort na Guailliní

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Crusheen was the property of Mr Bingham, Co Mayo. It is almost altogether a pasture farm, about ⅓ of it is subject to a turlough flood during winter. Crusheen was named from small crosses being placed over the graves of some individuals who were buried there, but there are no appearances of graves at present.

  • Area 141 acres 0 roods 38 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation no record
  • Landlord Lord Clanmorris
  • Population in 1851 no record
  • Family names Burke

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Gort an Dúaigh (Black field)

Gortadooey lies between Waterdale and Claregalway off the Mullaghruttery road. Gortadooey got its name from the land in the area because when it was dug it was blackish in colour. Land there is mainly of good quality although some is liable to flooding.

There was supposed to be a well in the area that had a dark dye which, when mixed with other material substances, made a type of ink. It is said the friars in Claregalway used it for writing. James Greally was the herdsman for the landlord and his descendants lived in the same house until about 1980.

  • Area 229 acres 2 roods 26 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £42 0s 0d
  • Landlord James S Lambert
  • Population in 1851 108 people in 15 houses
  • Family names Collins, Concannon, Cassidy, Duggan, Grealy, Glynn, Fahy, Henegan, Lambert, Lenehan, Moloney
  • Placenames Ceann na Gairde, Crochan na Creithe, Tolan Ruid and Cappagh Eoghan

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Gort an tSléibhe (Field of the mountain)

There was a pub in this townland in the past, across the road from Walshs. Most of the land is of good quality and is suitable for all types of farming, but also has some low-lying land, which is liable to flooding. Gortatleva is situated next to Lydacan.

  • Area 336 acres 2 roods 27 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £106 13s 0d
  • Landlord Andrew H Lynch
  • Population in 1851 89 people in 15 houses
  • Family names Bodkin, Cavanagh, McDonagh, Qualter, Walsh, Williams, Hughes, O’Brien, Carr and Murphy
  • Placenames Garraigh Raven

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Gort Cluain Mór (The big meadow)

Gortcloonmore adjoins the Waterdale River on the north side and Montiagh North at the other end. Gortcloonmore is mainly low-lying but has a mixture of land ranging from good grazing pastures to bog. Turf is cut there and in the past it supplied many households in the parish with winter fuel.

It has a small population today, with one family house inhabited, another not in everyday use and the Autistic Society/Health Service Executive have a house and farm there as well. During the early 20th century, when the Waterdale Estate was divided, some Gortcloonmore families moved to land they got in the division.

  • Area 517 acres 2 roods 39 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £50 10s 0d
  • Landlord James S Lambert
  • Population in 1851 64 people in 13 houses
  • Family names Duggan, Feeney, Greally, Noone and Qualter
  • Placenames An Loch Bheag

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Cill Tróg (Tróg’s Church)

Similar to Cloughaun, the Kiltrogue townland is also a strange division. The townland is split into land that is in the Claregalway parish and the remainder is in Lackagh. Of the land in Claregalway, the area is in two parts, both of which are fully surrounded by the Lackagh part of Kiltrogue.

The land is good and suitable for all kinds of farming. Kiltrogue got its name from St. Tróg who had a church there, only the bare remains of which survive to this day. A lisheen is also close by. Kiltrogue Castle, which is still in good order, lies in Lackagh parish.

  • Area 98 acres 0 roods 0 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £49 14s 0d
  • Landlord Lord Bishop of Cashel
  • Population in 1851 76 people in 12 houses
  • Family names Currane, Duffy, Egan, Greaney, Kelly, Kenny, Kyne, Moylan, O’Dea and Ryan
  • Placenames Tonn na Cnoic

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Cill Tullach

Kiltullagh is located west of Lydacan and South of Cregboy. It is bounded on the North and East by the parish of Claregalway, on the South by Oranmore townlands Glanrevagh and Ballantampul, and on the West by the parish of Oranmore in the Liberties and part of the Claregalway Parish.

Kill alone is the name of more than a score of places in various counties: in most cases it stands for cill, a church: but in some it is for coill, a wood.

  • Area 446 acres 0 roods 20 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation no record
  • Landlord Lord Clanmorris
  • Population in 1851 no record
  • Family names Persse, Shaughnessy, Molloy, Kearney

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Cinn Uisce (Water’s head / River mouth)

Kiniska adjoins the Clare River and Kiltrogue. The quality of the land is mainly good with some low-lying land beside Kiniska River, which rises, as the name would suggest, at Bun an Uisce and joins the Clare River about one mile away. There is a lisheen not far from Bun an Uisce and the last children were buried at the turn of the century. There is a souterrain or cave near the village.

Lord Clanmorris retained 18 acres for his own use for hunting. It was described as a ‘fox cover’ in the Griffith’s Valuation of 1855; that area may have been the wood that was on Pat Duggan’s land until about 1953 when it was cut down. The herdsman at that time was Patrick Nalty.

  • Area 505 acres 0 roods 22 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £192 5s 0d
  • Landlord Lord Clanmorris
  • Population in 1851 155 people in 33 houses
  • Family names Burke, Casserley, Commins, Connell, Kelly, Long, Nalty and Shaughnessy
  • Placenames Bun an Uisce, Carraun / Carán, Pollanrumpa and Tón an Cnoic

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Cnoc Tuadh Mór (Hill of the big axe)

Knockdoemore is situated to the east of the N17. The land is mainly very good with some rocky outcrops. Knockdoemore is at the base where the famous Battle of Knockdoe was fought in 1504.

Tinkers Lane runs through Knockdoemore from the N17 to the Roscommon road. Baile Uí Chonaill has been associated a lot with the O’Connell families. Thomas Browne was the herdsman for the landlord in 1855.

  • Area 269 acres 1 rood 30 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £86 11s 0d
  • Landlord William Burke
  • Population in 1851 61 people in 11 houses
  • Family names Bane, Browne, Comer, Connell, Lardner and Pearse
  • Placenames Tinkers Lane and Baile Uí Chonaill
  • Historical sites Enclosure and Ringfort

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Radharc na Locha

Lakeview is the name of the townland where the present church, school and community centre lie. The old post office, which was owned by the Cahill family until 1927 was also in this townland. This was situated across the road from Dunleavey’s Bar, not far from the Nine Arches bridge. Local knowledge tells us of a church situated in the same area in the past but very little is known about it.

Most of the land is of good quality with some low-lying land near the river which floods in very wet weather when the Clare River floods the surrounding land, hence the name ‘Turloch Briege’ (false lake). ‘Droim na Gaoithe’ is the name on the Ordnance Survey maps. Radharc na Locha is a direct translation of Lakeview.

  • Area 352 acres 3 roods 18 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £157 7s 0d
  • Landlord James Galbraith
  • Population in 1851 61 people in 12 houses
  • Family names Hession, Galway, Commons, Duggan, Cordial, Morris, Lynch, Small, Murphy and Giles
  • Placenames Droim na Gaoithe, Turloch Bréige and Bóithrín de Burca

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Leath Ceathrú Mór (Big half quarter)

Lecarrowmore is on the left after you pass the Garda Barracks on the Mullaghruttery road. Land is mainly good. Up to the last century, a ‘ceathrú’ represented a unit of measure of about sixteen acres and was commonly used in describing sizes of farmlands.

  • Area 47 acres 1 roods 20 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £17 10s 0d
  • Landlord Lord Dunsandle
  • Population in 1851 16 people in 3 houses
  • Family names O’Brien, Cassidy and Kirrane

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Lios a Rula (Ploughed fort)

Lissarulla lies between Lydacan and Caherlea. Lissarulla is the official name on the Ordnance Survey maps covering Ballymurphy and Ballinacreg but is not used by locals as often as the unofficial ones.

Ballymurphy or Baile Uí Mhurchú got its name from all the Murphys who lived there. It is also the more commonly used name by locals to this day. Ballinacreg or Baile na Creige is not an official townland either but it is on the Ordnance Survery maps as a recognised village name. There is a ruin of an old castle near Ballymurphy and also the ruins of an old settlement cluster.

  • Area 305 acres 3 roods 20 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £118 7s 0d
  • Landlord Andrew H Lynch
  • Population in 1851 101 people in 15 houses
  • Family names Murphy, Hanley, Qualter, Finnerty, Culkeen and Cunneer
  • Placenames Ballymurphy and Ballinacreg

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Leacht Seoirse (George’s stone)

Loughgeorge is located along the N17. All the land is good and while the local Garda Barracks is not in Loughgeorge itself, the Garda District is known as Loughgeorge. There is a well known pub and restaurant named Malachy Kellys here, and a GAA pitch. The third milestone is standing in this townland and is inscribed with the figure ‘6’, indicating six Irish miles from Eyre Square, Galway.

‘Leacht Seoirse’ means ‘George’s stone’ and it is believed that a man named George fell from his horse, was killed and is buried under a large stone in the area. The Cimín is the name of the field across the road from Malachy Kellys. It was reputed to have been used as a cattle pound in the past.

  • Area 31 acres 3 roods 38 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £20 15s 0d
  • Landlord Director of Alliance Insurance Company
  • Population in 1851 36 people in 3 houses
  • Family names O’Brien and Scully
  • Placenames Cimín

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Lideacáin (Small triangular fields)

This townland is unique within the parish in that it was once a parish itself with a church. One feature of the area was the landlord’s house, known as Lydacan Castle. The house was burned in 1922, and the occupants, the Greated family, moved away and bought a farm in Co. Wexford. Their land in Lydacan was divided among the local farmers at the time. Also beside the Lydacan Castle was a constabulary hut. The land is mostly fertile with some acres of rocky outcrops and has hazel growing there.

Cnoc na Leacht is the Irish name for Lydacan Hill. It got its name from an old custom of building small heaps of stones inside the wall while a corpse was being taken to the church.

Cnocán Aoibeann is the name of the fields owned by John Fahy and is situated at the back of the commercial truck garage.

Geata na Geann was the name of the gate that was at the back entrance to Greated’s Castle. This gate was given to Canon Moran to be used at the entrance to the old Claregalway Church and were to be seen there until 1974 when the church and walls were knocked.

Tonruadh ‘Tonroe’ is the part of Lydacan between Carnmore and Lydacan. The area gets it name from the red ferns to be seen locally.

Cathair na Finneoige is the Irish name for the old fort beside the Rock Road at Lydacan.

Páirc an Asail is the name of the field beside Lydacan Castle where the Greateds kept a few donkeys.

  • Area 852 acres 2 roods 26 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £280 7s 0d
  • Landlord Andrew H Lynch
  • Population in 1851 122 people in 18 houses
  • Family names Collins, Fahy, McDonald, Malony, Cullinan, Walsh, Gardiner, Glynn, Flesk, Flynn, Dillon, Kemple, Sheridan, O’Dea and Qualter
  • Placenames An Fheilm, Cathair na Finneoige, Cnoc na Leacht, Cnocán Aoibeann, Geata na Geann, Gort na gCuailíní, Páirc an Asail, Rock Road and Tónruadh
  • Historical sites Ringfort, Lisheen, Castle and Souterrain

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Móinteach Thuadh (House of turf)

The Clare River separates Montiagh North from Montiagh South. The land is low-lying and floods in the winter but it is good pastureland in summer. There is also a bog there and part of the cut away bog (200 acres) was acquired by the Forestry in 1960 and planted. It is now a large wood. Turf is still cut in the remaining bog. Montiagh North adjoins Curraghmore to the west and Gortcloonmore to the north. There hasn’t been anybody living there for the past hundred years.

  • Area 454 acres 2 roods 17 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £48 0s 0d
  • Landlord Lord Clanmorris
  • Population in 1851 5 people in 1 houses
  • Family names Duggan

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Móinteach Theas (House of turf)

The townland of Montiagh is located along the Clare River between Cahergowan, Cloon and Pollaghrevagh and at the extreme westside it adjoins Sylaun in the parish of Castlegar. As in the parish of Claregalway, Irish was the spoken language, but it survived more so in Montiagh than in other parts of the parish.

There was a hedge school here as well in the past. Tomásín was the name of the teacher and his reward for the teaching of the pupils was vegetables and groceries. There was also a lisheen there, but no child has been buried there since the 1930s.

As the river is so close to the village, boats were very important in the past for the transporting of turf, hay and other products. They were also used for shooting and fishing. The type of boat that was used was a flat bottom boat, which was suitable for travelling over flooded land.

There are none of those boats in use now, only the standard lake boats. Fishing was a very important part of the lifestyle in Montiagh in the past. Salmon were very plentiful then and the catch would be transported to hotels in Galway City, hidden in cartloads of turf.

The land is mainly low-lying except where the village is situated, and in winter is liable to flooding. Most of the land is good pasture. There is also some bog, and turf is still cut there.

  • Area 331 acres 2 roods 23 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £84 5s 0d
  • Landlord Lord Clanmorris
  • Population in 1851 238 people in 43 houses
  • Family names Burke, Collins, Duggan, Glynn, Heavey, Lenihan, Moran, Noone, Thorpey, Keany and Wall
  • Placenames Leana, An Barlan, Garraí Bán, Garraí Beag, Gort Clúain mBuilan, Oileán na mBad, Oilean Fada, Bearna Bhuí, An Cheibh, Garraí na Móna and Bóithrín na Blathaí

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Mullach Otraigh (Hill of the red cat)

It is told in a story from Irish folklore that the name Mullacuttra originated from Mullach a ‘Chait Rua’ which was a Great Red Cat that guarded a treasure buried in the area in olden times.

Land is arable, suitable for grazing and tillage. Mullaghruttery is on the right as you go to Corrandulla. It adjoins Peake. A feature of the area is the striking stone walls dividing the fields.

  • Area 180 acres 0 roods 16 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £74 11s 0d
  • Landlord James S Lambert
  • Population in 1851 55 people in 8 houses
  • Family names Connell, Glynn, Golding, Herwood, Hogan, Keane, Hughes, Lambert and Lyons

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Péic (High point)

Peake is situated on the left as you go to Tuam after passing Loughgeorge. Land is arable and suitable for grazing and tillage. There are very nice stone walls dividing the fields here.

  • Area 220 acres 2 roods 0 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £85 0s 0d
  • Landlord William Burke
  • Population in 1851 22 people in 5 houses
  • Family names Browne, Carthy, Forde and Griffin

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Pollach Ríabach (Rough hallow)

Pollaghrevagh lies between Cahergowan and Cloon off the N17. Most of the land is fertile, and there is also some woodland and bog. Locals seldom use the name Pollaghrevagh.

  • Area 417 acres 3 roods 28 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £92 3s 0d
  • Landlord James Ffrench
  • Population in 1851 29 people in 4 houses
  • Family names Ffrench, Hardiman, O’Brien, Nohilly, Nolan, Wall, Moran

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Leach na Coille

Rockwood is situated on the left as one travels into Galway from Claregalway. It begins at Kiltulla road and ends at the top of Holmes’ Hill. The only house in this area in 1851 was the landlord’s house. This is the last remaining landlord’s house in the parish to this day. In recent times the house went into disrepair for some years until the Divilly family bought it and restored it to its former glory.

  • Area 41 acres 0 roods 34 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £45 0s 0d
  • Landlord John Galway
  • Population in 1851 4 people in 1 houses
  • Family names Galway
  • Placenames Holmes’ Hill

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Ruadh an Mhór (Large area of red ferns)

Rooaunmore is situated on the Roscommon road adjoining Kiniska, Loughgeorge and Knockdoemore. In the past there were very few houses in the area as the landlord retained all the land because of its good quality. Due to the size of the fields, horse races were held there in the early part of this century.

Here in Rooaunmore is the only remaining forge to be found in the parish. It has been in the Smith family since the last century. Presently Michael Smith is the owner and he continues with this trade to this day.

Claregalway Museum is situated in Rooaunmore just off the Roscommon road, alongside the N17.

  • Area 220 acres 2 roods 0 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £72 11s 0d
  • Landlord Lessor
  • Population in 1851 35 people in 7 houses
  • Family names Hughes, Gaynor, Mooney, O’Brien, Smith, McGrath and Clancy

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Eochaill (Yew wood)

The old name Eochaill meant ‘yew wood’ and bears no resemblance to the English name Waterdale, which was given to the area by the Anglo-Normans who owned the land. There is another name for part of Waterdale known as Leana Clocha; the Keaney family live in that area now. In the past, many families lived in Leana Clocha but when the land was divided among the tenants, some built new houses in Waterdale.

Waterdale townland was once one whole estate owned by Lady Lambert. She lived in Waterdale House. There was a church beside the house. The land was divided in 1908 when Lady Lambert left. There are very good examples of an old ring fort and also a lisheen. Over half the land is of good quality with the remainder being bog or low-lying land liable to flooding.

The fourth milestone in the parish is situated near the entrance to Waterdale village. This stone is inscribed with the figure ‘7’, representing seven Irish miles to Eyre Square, Galway.

  • Area 679 acres 3 roods 0 perches
  • Poor Law Valuation £225 12s 0d
  • Landlord Lambert owned 610 acres 1 rood 34 perches, Blake owned 69 acres 1 rood 0 perches
  • Population in 1851 105 people in 22 houses
  • Family names Blake, Carley, Cullinan, Duggan, Glenane, Keaney, Moran, Walsh and Golding
  • Placenames Leana Clocha, Baile na Móna, Páirc na Ceartan and Waterdale River
  • Historical features Aill an Ára Thiar / Nalhear (cliff), Abhainn Eochalla / Waterdale River, Carraig Fhuathach / Carrickooagh (rock), Tobar Chiaráin / St. Kieran’s Well, Loch Phort Chorrúch / Portcowrugh Lough, Loch Phort Eochla / Oghil Lough


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Claregalway Parish, as we know it today, covers a total area of over 12,000 statute acres. Historically, Ireland was divided into counties, which were subdivided into Baronies. Baronies were formed in the 16th century, and used for administrative purposes up until the late 19th century. The majority of Claregalway (7,080 acres approximately) lies in the Barony of Dunkellin and the remainder is contained within the Barony of Clare.

Claregalway itself is divided into 30 official townlands, used for present day administration. Townlands vary in size and most do not contain a town, indeed some lack inhabitants. Natural features such as the Clare River or manmade structures such as the N17 (Galway to Tuam) main road sometimes define their boundaries. The official townland names may not always be used, as locals may still use the older Irish townlands and placenames. As is in the case all over Ireland, our local placenames are derived from various sources. Most are very old and have been passed down through the centuries by word of mouth or manuscript. These factors and the anglicised versions of Gaelic names have led to some placenames being lost or bearing little or no resemblance to the present features. Names such as Curraghmore (large boggy place) or Gortatleva (field of the hill) have changed only in spelling over the years.

In the listings here we have described Claregalway using the official townlands, along with some facts and local features. We have attempted to include as many local names as possible and have had to pick the most common spellings for some names. Included under each townland is the total area and its value under the Grifftith’s Poor Law Valuation of 1855. Also included are the family names that appear in that same Valuation.

Area is given in acres, roods and perches where 1 acre=4 roods=160 perches

Value is given in old pounds, shillings and pence where £1=20s=240d