The Catholic Clergy of Great Britain and Ireland published in 1838 listed among the Chapels of Ferns—Carrig, Ballamitty. Brother Tom Mc Donagh in the C. B. S. in Enniscorthy back in 1965-68 told us that often in spoken Irish there is an invisible “a” between two syllables. It is possible that this pronunciation is derivative of an older Gaelic idiom. Conversely an English editor may have made a mis-print!
This is a report of a football match between two national school teams in July 1936:–
“On Friday evening of last week the replay of the Schools Football tie between Tullicanna and Ballymitty V Clongeen and Newbawn. The replay was the result of an objection by the last named team on the grounds of age and both teams agreed to a replay. On Friday evening the Tullicanna and Ballymitty team were decidedly, with a couple of exceptions, much the lighter team whilst Clongeen and Newbawn were vastly improved and from their display should take some beating in the League.
Tullicanna won the toss and playing with the wind attacked but a free to Clongeen brought the play back and getting a free close in the latter sent wide. An attack by Tullicanna resulted in a point. A free to Clongeen was returned and Tullicanna moved in but sent wide. Kelly, Waters, Donnelly and Doran were prominent but ill-luck followed their attacks and wides were the only result of their efforts. Clongeen attacked and drew level before the interval, when the scores were—
With the wind in their favour on the change over Clongeen had matters much their own way and soon scored a point. The three Eustaces, Casey and Kelly dominated the situation and soon two goals were registered to be quickly followed by a couple of points and the game ended in an easy victory for Clongeen on the final scores—
Clongeen and Newbawn, 2 goals, 4 points;
Tullicanna and Ballymitty—1 point.
Clongeen and Newbawn—John Eustace, Martin Eustace, R. Eustace, John Casey, J. Kelly, Thomas Banville, James Dillon, James Butler, Michael Casey, William Foley, John Carty, Martin Sullivan, Nicholas Chapman, Martin Carty.
Tullicanna and Ballymitty—
Pat Hogan, Pat Waters, Jack Galavan, Jem Crosbie, Jack Donnelly, Jack Kelly, Jem Mc Cormack, Bill Kelly, Mike Kelly, Eric Gilbertson, Joe White, Bill Doyle, Mike Byrne, Aidan Doran, and Bill Cooper.
Mr T. Walsh N. T. Bannow, refereed.”
The Carrig-on-Bannow branch of the Land League published its Balance Sheet for 1883 in the People on January 19th 1884.
The amount of subscriptions handed in to the Treasurer was £27 13 shillings and 6 pence. To balance the book the committee subscribed £1 4 shillings and the total was £37 17 shillings and 6 pence.
The Disbursements were:–
By cash remitted to Central Branch….£20.
Flag and Staff presented to St Peter’s Fife and Drum Band, Ballymitty….£2 10 shillings
Cost of bills of sale of Mr N. O’Hanlon Walsh’s auctioneering account….14 shillings and 6 pence
Conveyance of band to County Meeting, refreshments etc…£3 8 shillings
Cost of printing voting papers, collectors cards, posters and advertising in People….£1 17 shillings and 6 pence
Cost of labourers forms of application received from Messrs M. H. Gill and Son, Dublin….7 shillings and 6 pence.
It was signed by J. E. Mayler of Harriestown, President, Nicholas Furlong, Treasurer and Nicholas Moore, Secretary.
In 1835 the Municipal Corporations in Ireland Report from the House of Commons was published and it had this to say of Clonmines—
“Clonmines is situate near the upper extremity of a small bay in the southern part of the county of Wexford. There is no house at or near the place, except Mr Sutton’s; from him we learned that there was formerly a town here, which returned members to Parliament before the Union. In former times ships came up to the town but the port has been since stopped up by a shifting bar at the entrance. In Mr Sutton’s opinion a moderate sum would restore the harbour and render it again fit for shipping; and if restored it would be very beneficial to the neighbourhood which is a populous one.
The population of what was once a Borough consists merely of the family of this gentleman.
Mr Sutton said there was no corporation, nor had he heard of one in the Borough.
We have not discovered any charter of Clonmines. Several inquisitions post mortem in the reigns of James I and Charles I, mention the seisin of certain persons in burgages in the town. The borough seems to have been held of the King in free burgage. These records make no mention of a corporation.
It appears from the returns of the Irish Union Compensations that a sum of £15, 000 was awarded on account of the loss of the representative franchise of this borough to Charles, Earl of Ely and Charles Tottenham, Esq.
Inquiry held on 17th September 1833.”
Tom Broaders who worked in the Barriestown mines in 1913 spoke of his experiences there to the Folklore research for the National Schools project in 1938. He said they were re-opened in “my time in the year 1913.” They were looking for silver and lead which are found usually in conjunction with each other. He told of working in a new shaft in James Howlin’s field opposite Carton’s lane. They sank to a depth of 55 or 56 feet from the surface.
I am puzzled by this location of mine shafts. I think that Jim Carton’s farm was later owned by Aidan Kenny. Circa 1959 John Kenny lived there and I remember him as a most friendly man. If this information is correct and I have no doubt it is then the mine pits on the bit of land my father had may not have been sunk in 1913 but at a much earlier date, perhaps, in, circa, 1842.
Mr Broaders said that there was considerable local speculation “when the present government got into power” there would be further surveys to ascertain if further expenditure on re-opening the mines at Barriestown. The present government was that of Mr de Valera and his Fianna Fail party.
This is a quotation from the biography of Fr Philip Doyle O. S. A., the native of Maudlintown:–
“In the year 1888, I was in the infants’ class in Carrig school and I can see the tablet on which the master chalked day and month under the big heading 1888. The schoolhouse was a slated building of one room, lighted well enough to the south but facing close to the cemetery wall, only a few yards away between them to the north and west. In that one room there were 150 boys and girls up to fifteen years of age. How the master and mistress could spend the long hours in the close atmosphere of that room would be a mystery if it were not much the same story in the whole country at that time and for many years later.
As soon as Canon Sheridan, the parish priest, could prevail on the Commissioners to help him, he built the present fine schools and I was not only in the last batch of scholars of the old school but I was put in charge of one of my father’s horses to draw bricks for the new school from Wexford town. The brick kilns of Wexford are not so entirely out of memory. They were down a lane almost opposite the present technical schools, that is, to the right as you go uphill towards the Mercy convent. They were of a very good quality.
The master during my time was William Murphy, a native of the parish of Davidstown, Of low size, somewhat deformed, he always dressed in sombre black with snow-white linen and wore a skull cap and a gold dangling watch-chain with seal. At all times a severe man, he was an excellent teacher. His predecessor (of whom I only heard tell) was a Mr Ryan who was keen on mathematics and also taught navigation. Our master was more intent on good hand-writing and English grammar. Dictation and parsing were his strong points. Irish language or Irish history—no not a word did we ever hear of either….”
From The People June 26th 1920:
“A daring raid on the coastguard station at Bar of Lough, Cullenstown, was made on Saturday night. Shortly before midnight a party of armed men, estimated to number fifty, surrounded the residence of the chief of the coastguards, which is situated at a distance of about 600 yards from the building where the men are stationed. They apprehended one of the men who was leaving the station, bound him and forced him with levelled revolvers to seek admission to the chief’s residence. The chief answered the knock and becoming suspicious fired several shots to which the attackers replied with a hot fire, lasting for about twenty minutes. During a lull in the firing he was informed that the building was mined and would be blown up unless he surrendered within five minutes. Shortly afterwards the raiders entered his residence. Meanwhile a party of the coastguards from the station hearing the shots, endeavoured to reach the scene. They were seized by the attacking party and bound with ropes. The raiders then searched both houses and carried off five Webley revolvers and a quantity of ammunition. They were, also, proceeding to remove the rockets used as signals and in connection with the life saving apparatus; but on being informed of their use, they satisfied themselves by taking only one. Since raids for arms commenced the coastguards in this country have been deprived of all arms except their revolvers. They gained entrance to the various rooms and out-buildings without damaging the doors or locks; but there are several bullet marks on the outer door of the chief’s house. Private property was not interfered with and one of the raiders informed a coastguard that any man found pilfering would be shot. The raiders treated the wives and children of the coastguards with the greatest courtesy and the chief and the men at the station praise the gentlemanly manner in which the raid was carried out. They state that the attacking party was most considerate. The raiders ceased their search at about half-past two and the fifty men engaged at the chief’s house marched off in military formation. Before the raid took place the telegraph wires were cut and several people were held up by men armed with revolvers, questioned, and escorted to their homes, by detachments of the raiders. These wore no masks and were complete strangers to the locality. It is believed that in all taking into account the sentries and outposts there were at least 150 men in the raiding party and on Sunday morning numbers of those who had been engaged in the attack were heard marching through Duncormack and Carrig and others are stated to have moved off in the direction of Bannow.”
Men would have to come from a long distance away not to be known by somebody or other. The army of the Dail Eireann were unpaid and the query must arise: how could such men spend long periods at undertakings of this kind without any means of providing for themselves. I am also puzzled as to how they travelled the long distance to Cullenstown—could the authorities not pick up an army of marching men?
A book published in 1834 related:–
“Mr King of Barristown, who has resided among the people during a long life, with the exception of one excursion to England, although not in the commission of the peace, has for the last forty years settled half of the disputes in the parish:–such are the advantages of a resident gentry, when kind and benevolent to those around them.”
The people in that era was obsequious and deferential to the highly placed men about them. Old Jonas King did not become a magistrate, a Justice of the Peace, and therefore did not have any authority as such to intervene in disputes and rows but because of his position as a landlord the local peasantry and labourers deferred to him and probably accepted direction from him. As the nineteenth century went on the courts were increasingly used as the means to resolve rows, disputes and perceived wrongs. The courts proceeded on the basis of statute law, as enacted by Parliament and written down in statutes—the courts also, were guided by principles of natural justice—at least to some extent.
The younger Jonas King an indirect descendant of the old Jonas became a magistrate but seriously over-estimated his powers; he felt that he had a natural prerogative to impose order and enforce law, beyond the proceedings of the courts. In Taghmon he arrested Martin the Enniscorthy butcher for failed payment for a cow bought from Jonas. The butcher sued Jonas for wrongful arrest and the courts decided that Jonas had no function, as a magistrate, in the matter of a civil debt. The only legal option available to him (as indeed to all other citizens) was to prosecute Martin for the debt in the courts. Jonas was ordered to pay Martin £50 for unlawful arrest.