Hi, it is the boy from Barrystown, charming, charismatic, inspiring, comedic, erudite, scholarly, describable only in superlatives and—wily; a historian supreme and one of the Barrystown children ever recipients of gold and silver! I suppose that I should add in the extra adjective “famous” to the above list but my humility ever stands out.

From The Bannow and District Notes in the People August 6th 1955:–

“Wheat Midge—The wheat crop is suffering from a heavy attack of the midge probably due to the very warm weather.”

From The Bannow and District Notes:–

“Home From U. S. A.—Mr Michael Boyse U. S. A. is at present spending a holiday with his sister Mrs T. Walsh, Bannow. He is accompanied by his daughter and mother-in-law Mrs Curtis.”

From The People August 7th 1898—report of meeting of the Board of Guardians of Wexford Poor Law Union:–

“Mr Samuel Browne wrote:–“Acting on your orders as conveyed by your relieving officer I have examined the pump at Ballymitty. I have to report for the information of your board the well requires to be cleaned out and that a top stick is also required. I likewise recommend that the surface of the well be covered with concrete. This will prevent the water of the well being contaminated by surface water, etc, a thing that frequently happens now.

Mr J. Murphy said he considered the best course would be to carry out Mr Browne’s recommendations. He suggested a committee consisting of Rev. J. Busher C. C. Ballymitty; Messrs Nicholas Byrne, Patrick Gorman, be appointed to look into the matter. Chairman—With yourself, and be allowed to incur an expenditure of £5.”

From The People October 10th 1912:–

“A meeting of the Ballymitty Branch of the Irish National Trade and Labour Benefit Society was held on Friday evening of last week. Mr Michael Waters, president, occupied the chair. There was a full attendance and the principal business was the collecting of stamped cards. A good number were handed in and it was decided to hold a general meeting on this Friday evening to collect the remainder of the cards. All employers in this district are said to be stamping cards. A number of members applied for transfer from other societies and a half dozen new members were enrolled.”

Report in July 1898 of Land Commision Court to determine fair rents:–

“James Harpur, Ballymadder, tenant; Major Boyse, landlord; area 97 acres 1 rood, 18 perches; rent £106 5 shillings, valuation £105 10 shillings; former rent £134 8 shillings. Mr O’Connor for tenant, Mr Huggard for landlord. The tenant complained that he exchanged some of his land with Major Boyse for a shed and cellar but he never got the latter. Mr Huggard—He would not use it. The tenant gave lengthened evidence as to the improvements he had effected on the farm. On the last occasion he was in court he, and a tenant, named Sinnott, who had been evicted, had the right confined to both of obtaining seaweed from a reserved strand but he had lost that right as he could not berth the seaweed and as a consequence the seaweed was not of as nearly much value to him. Mr Boyd promised him to make the road down to the place all right but he had not done so. He could not draw along the road now, as it was all sunk. He could get seaweed, also, off a place called The Lake, but he only got one-fourth of the amount on The Lake, as he did at Ballymadder. Chairman—What you call a right is not a right at all but the privilege of getting seaweed with the consent of the landlord. To Mr Huggard—The strand at Ballymadder adjoined his holding for about a quarter of a mile and no one could go and take seaweed from there except himself and Major Boyse. Mr Lett, who had been the arbitrator on the former occasion, said that 5 shillings had been put on the rent for seaweed. Mr Huggard in reply to the Chairman, said they were prepared to give ten the right of taking seaweed from all the Bannow strands. Mr Huggard (to tenant)—If the landlord were to gather the seaweed and draw it from you, would that satisfy you? I would not thing it a great compliment (laughter). Thomas Flanagan, Coolherin, valued for the tenant. He allowed 1 shilling and 6 pence an acre for the seaweed and his net valuation was £53 10 shillings 10 pence. Wm H. Lett, Balloughton House, valued for the landlord at £100 1 shilling and 6 pence, of which £5 was on the buildings and £11 (at the rate of 4 shillings per acre) for the right of seaweed. At the former fixing of the rent he was arbitrator and the amount put on them for seaweed was £5. The land was fairly managed but not at all so well as at the time it was held by the tenant’s father. To Mr O’Connor—He would not be surprised to hear that what he had put on the place was higher than what Major Boyse is demanding. If the tenant swore that Ballymadder strand was no use to him witness would not believe him, although he was a near neighbour of his.

Andrew Devereux, Bannow Island, tenant; Miss Colclough, landlord; area 16 acres 1 rood, 12 perches; rent £10; valuation £10 15 shillings. Mr Colfer for tenant and Mr Thompson (for Mr Norris Goddard) for the landlord. Bridget Devereux, sister to the tenant, proved that she always managed the place for the tenant. The rent was raised in Mr Beatty’s time from £7 to £10. The tide surrounded the farm and for portions of the day the place was cut off. James Martin valued for landlord at £9 1shilling and 7 pence.”

From The Free Press June 21 1952:–

“The newly formed Rhubarb City (Wellingtonbridge) football team travelled to Longraigue on Thursday of last week (Corpus Christi) to meet Clongeen in a challenge match. After a spirited struggle the local team emerged winners by the narrow margin of one point. The final scores were: Clongeen, 2—5; Rhubarb City, 2—4.

Feature of the game was the fine display of the White brothers for the losers. Other Rhubarb City players to shine were the Fardy brothers, Wade, Ferguson, Bent and Duffin. Clongeen were best served by Eustace, Fanning, White, Cullen and Murphy.

Clongeen—R. Doyle, T. Fardy, M. Eustace, M. Duffin, M. Fanning, M. Doyle, A. Stafford, T. Dunne, D. Murphy, R. Cullen, T. Purcell, J. White, S. Sullivan, S. Miskella, J. Cullen. Subs—J. Franklin, S. Sane and T. Wall.

Rhubarb City—B. Doyle, E. Conlon, T. Fardy, H. White, T. Byrne, S Hillis, J. Wade, S. Kelly, J. Ferguson, P. White, L. Fanning, P. Fardy, E. Duffin, N. Bent, M. Jolly. Sub.—J. Quigley.

Mr J. Kent was a capable referee.”

This report is confounding and astounding as I had thought that the Corah Ramblers was the first and only attempt at a separate football team in Wellingtonbridge in the 1950ies. The Rhubarb City was a well used alternative name for Wellingtonbridge in the first half of the twentieth century but I do not know what it refers to or how it came about. Maybe Rich Howlin could enlighten me on this matter; I again get a Wellingtonbridge team playing Clongeen in the summer of 1953. Did the Corah Ramblers represent a change of title of this Rhubarb team? I could not get any representative from the Rhubarb City Club at the Co. Convention in 1952.

From The Free Press August 30th 1952:–

“Bass fishing by line-men is yielding good results on the Bar of Lough river and Cullenstown. It has attracted a big number of fishing enthusiasts these past few weeks and quite good catches have been landed. Big shoals of mackerel have made their appearance off the south coast and good catches have been reported. There is a keen local demand as it is only about this time of year that many people living in close proximity to the coast get fish other than the canned or salted varieties.”

The People on June 22nd 1898 reported on the Duncormick Petty Sessions; it began:–

“William Roche summoned Edward Neville, junior, for assault, pulling him about, etc. it was said a charming young lady was the cause of the row. At any rate when the case was called plaintiff did not answer and the case was marked “no appearance”.

Road Nuisance

Acting Sergeant Currid had James Fanning, Coolishall summoned for wandering asses; and Mary Stafford had to answer for the same charge, only it was a jennet was loose. Fined 1 shilling each and costs, with strict orders not to be up again.”

At the Duncormick Petty Sessions in July 1896 District­-Inspector France sued Patrick White for keeping and exposing for sale intoxicating drink without a license. Mr Malone (of Messrs O’Connor & Co.) asked for an adjournment to next court day, as his firm were engaged in the case and no representative could attend owing to the assizes. Mr France said he would not object.

Mr Edward Neville said he understood the police took some seventy bottles of porter or more on White, and it mattered not whether the police or White won the case, the porter would be all bad against next court day, as it was well known porter would not keep long in bottle and he would move that it be given to the poor and if the poor would not be able to get through it all, he would guarantee to get them assistance in the matter (laughter).

The magistrates said they could not interfere in the case and as Mr Neville thought it would be useless to ask the police, he would consent to withdraw his application.”

Two comments on the above. Firstly, however strange this may seem, in that era young men occasionally fought with each other for the favour of young girls. Secondly it is not clear from the above if Ned Neville was a customer of Mr White or a partner in business with him. I incline to the latter view; why else should he appear in court in support of Mr White.

My little dictionary defines spiritualism as a belief that the spirits of the dead can communicate with the living. A writer in London in 1868 claimed that Anna Maria Hall and her husband Samuel Carter Hall were believers in spiritualism. Her short stories certainly raise that suspicion.

Charlie Shudall was coast officer at Bannow from 1792 to 1820; he was 60 years of age when he received superannuation of £32 6 shillings on February 5th 1820. The evidence from a court case in Kilmore is that the Coastguards were extremely unpopular—the feelings towards them were visceral and atavistic. My presumption is that they deterred and impeded smuggling; they may also have prevented prisoners and criminals escaping the jurisdiction.

I will conclude with a bit of pure pathos. From the report of the second meeting in April 1868 of the Board of Poor Law Guardians of Wexford Union:–

“Anne Stafford applied for re-admission [to the Workhouse]. She had been formerly charged on Ballymitty.

Mr Devereux objected to her admission on Ballymitty as she had no claim on it. She had been charged to Ballymitty when there was no guardian to represent it.

Under these circumstances she was charged to Bannow.”

Each pauper in the Workhouse was a charge on the electoral district that he or she came from it; in other words an increase in the poor law rent for that area.