Saturday, 27 July 2013

A Famine Walk and Sad Memories in South Donegal, Leitrim and Fermanagh

On Monday 5th August 2013 at 2.30 p.m. I will be leading a Famine Walk from the Paupers' Graveyard to the Workhouse in Ballyshannon. The meeting point is the Abbey Centre in Ballyshannon and I hope you can make it as part of the Ballyshannon 400 Week. On the Famine walk we will hear stories, songs and verses from the Great Famine of the 1840s and recall the suffering endured by our ancestors in this area.

The workhouse at Ballyshannon housed people from:

  • The  Belleek area as far as Churchill, Devenish and Boho in County Fermanagh 
  • Kinlough, Glenade and Tullaghan areas in County Leitrim 
  • Ballyshannon, Bundoran, Ballintra and Rossnowlagh areas in County Donegal.     

If you know anyone from the areas above please invite them to come along to remember people from their area who are forgotten today, some of whom would be buried in the Paupers’ graveyard. The walk will be at a leisurely pace. All welcome.




                                                                                                                                    Anthony Begley


This week's blog recalls earlier famines and an outbreak of cholera where some of the dead were interred in what later became the Pauper's Graveyard. 


Early Famines 1816-1822

There was widespread poverty in the Ballyshannon area with frequent failure of the crops which caused great hardship long before the Great Famine. The failure of the crops in 1816 was not severely felt until the spring of the following year with serious scarcity of food in the summertime. People collected nettles, wild mustard and any other edible plants or herbs. In the seashore around Ballyshannon marine plants were collected to eat and the poor regularly collected cockles, limpets, mussels or even putrefying fish they found on the shore. This food gathered from the seashore kept many families alive. In desperate times seed potatoes were eaten but this was eating their future crops and merely postponed the evil day. Blood was drawn from cattle in the fields and was mixed with oatmeal, when this was available, and this was some families’ means of survival.

Christian Ladies Assist the Poor in the Ballyshannon Area

A  local group of Christian ladies assisted the poor by providing gainful employment for them in their own homes. Donations of clothing were received from the Ladies Association in London to enable the poor to spin cloth. By the 23rd of February 1822 there were over 120 spinners being supplied and the number was on the increase. The local ladies took in yarn, paid for the spinning and distributed flax and clothing. They also visited the poor in their own homes to encourage them to send their children to school and they also checked on the levels of hardship. In the days before the welfare state the provision of meaningful employment had a double advantage as it enabled people to earn money and to have the dignity of work.

Cholera brings Fear and Death to the Locality in 1832

Cholera was believed to have spread to the town from Bundoran where it had arrived on board a ship in August 1832. In early September 1832 a young man called Gallagher, a cart maker, had left Ballyshannon to avoid cholera but died of the disease at Brownhall near Ballintra. He was buried in the Abbey graveyard. Cholera continued to spread in the community and a Cholera Relief Fund raised £45-8-6 to help the victims and their families. 

Fear of cholera was rife in the area and a poor woman called Magrath who lived in the Cloghan contracted cholera. The Cloghan is just beyond Bishop Street on the road to Rossnowlagh. She refused to go to the hospital or to take the prescribed medicine and she died. Sadly her infant child also died of cholera in the hospital. A neighbouring woman called Grace Gallagher, aged 70, also died of cholera. The early weeks of September saw the death of a man called Daly and another man called Edwards from the Abbey, both of whom were taken to the graveyard in the same cart. Edwards’s father also died at this period. William Ellis of the Main Street died, Arthur O’Neill, a shop keeper of Mill Street died, a child named Sergeant died and an old lady named Highland died of cholera in the Port, having refused to go to the hospital.

Death of a Journeyman called Hume

By the 21st of September the Ballyshannon Herald was still reporting on sad individual cases of sudden death from cholera. A man called Hume worked as a journeyman for Mr. Wilson who was a cabinet maker in the town. He had been out walking on a Sunday morning and was at Mr. Wilson’s house where a girl offered him breakfast. Mr. Wilson was away from home at the time. Hume started to feel sick before breakfast and left to go to his lodgings in the Port. There he paid his landlord for three weeks lodgings which he owed and he also settled his bill with the washerwoman. On returning to Mr. Wilson’s house he shook hands with the girl who had offered him breakfast earlier and he walked down to the hospital on the Donegal Road. He died later that night.

The Sad Case of Mrs. Flaherty of the Port

Three other recorded deaths in September 1832 were of a man called Meehan who fled the disease in the Cloghan but died in the Port, a butcher named Mc Crann who took ill, refused to go to hospital and died, and the unusual case of a woman from the Port called Flaherty. Her husband Daniel Flaherty, a pilot on the ships, thought that his wife was dead and went to the hospital for a coffin and the dead cart was sent to the house to collect her remains. On arrival at the house Mrs. Flaherty had recovered somewhat and the cart returned empty. However the story didn’t have a happy ending as her condition deteriorated and she died at eleven o’clock that night. The cholera epidemic affected the business life of the town and shops in the Back Street and the Port were nearly deserted. Crops and markets were still good but the poor were in want.

Newspaper Suggested a Scourge from the Almighty?

By October 5th 1832 the local paper recorded that some people paraded the town, accompanied by music, in celebration of a clearance of cholera from the area and a feeling that the worst was over. The editor reflecting on the cholera outbreak felt that “the disease was a scourge from the Almighty for our numerous transgressions”. The parade was led by the band of the 4th Dragoon Guards who played “God Save the King”, “Patrick’s Day” and many lively tunes. However the local military in the Barracks at the bridge were not immune from attacks of cholera and, despite the optimism, a soldier of the 4th Dragoons took ill in October and died within six hours. Sergeant Major Smith of the Donegal Regiment who had apparently recovered from an attack of cholera had a relapse and died.

Tragic Death of Local Priest but End in Sight

By October 19th only one death was reported in the previous week and that was of Fr. O’Donnell who would have been vulnerable to attack as he attended the sick and the dying in their final moments. His death was mourned by people of all creeds and his remains were brought to the graveyard accompanied by a huge crowd of friends and parishioners. By mid October the worst appeared to be over and a day of thanksgiving for their deliverance from cholera was arranged by the Established Church. The shops of all Protestants were closed throughout the day and at twelve o’clock divine service was held in St. Anne’s Church.  

Mr. Neal O’Neill a shopkeeper died of cholera in Ballyshannon in November 1832. Also in the same month Mrs. Bird wife of Richard Bird, a grocer and seed merchant, in Main Street and Mr. Purcell of the Ballyshannon Distillery also died. Surgeon Crawford died of cholera in November. In December Miss Mary Britton a daughter of Captain Britton of the Whitehill died of cholera. Ballyshannon was free from the ravages of cholera by January 1833 but upwards of one hundred people had died from the disease with at least a further 230 people having contracted the disease.

People in the Ballyshannon area felt some relief when the cholera epidemic abated but more devastation was around the corner as in the next decade the Great Famine of the 1840s began.

P.S Check the archive for November 2012 for a blog on the closure of the workhouse 90 years 

Next Weeks Blog

3rd August  "Cures of Bygone Days.

Lots Happening for Ballyshannon 400 Gathering and Other Events




A New Local History Book suitable for those at Home and Away

A new book entitled: "Ballyshannon. Genealogy and History"  reveals newly researched history and genealogy of the town, extending as far as the Rossnowlagh, Cashelard, Corlea, Clyhore, Higginstown and Finner areas. Includes the parishes of Kilbarron and Magh Ene.

The genealogy material provides detailed guidelines for anyone tracing their roots in the area or anywhere in County Donegal or Ireland. 

The book contains 500 pages and is richly illustrated with stunning colour, aerial photography, original illustrations and rare photographs of the area not seen before.

Topics include: How to go about Tracing your Roots/The first settlers in the area/ Newly researched history of the town of Ballyshannon and the townlands in Kilbarron and Mágh Éne parishes/ Records of the first travellers and tourists to Ballyshannon, Bundoran, Belleek, Rossnowlagh and Ballintra/An aerial guide to place names along the Erne from Ballyshannon to the Bar/Flora and Fauna of the area/ A history of buildings and housing estates in the locality/Graveyard Inscriptions from the Abbey graveyard, St. Joseph’s and St. Anne’s /Rolling back the years with many memories of the Great Famine, Independence struggle, hydro-electric scheme, Gaelic games, boxing, handball, Boy Scouts, soccer, mummers, characters, organisations, folklore and lots more.

Book Available from Anthony Begley West Rock Ballyshannon. anthonyrbegley@hotmail.com  Enquiries welcome for postal and other details. Also available at The Novel Idea Bookshop Ballyshannon, Ballyshannon and District Museum, Ballyshannon Tourist Office, The Four Masters Bookshop Donegal Town.

The blogs are original and are not taken from the book above.

Ballyshannon Musings:  Good to hear that people from the Ballyshannon area enjoyed the blog worldwide and the site received thousands of hits. The site is called Ballyshannon Musings and there are a number of back issues available on the internet. Copy this link and it can be googled at  http://ballyshannon-musings.blogspot.ie/



Friday, 19 July 2013

Local Customs for Special Days

People long ago had great faith in customs and traditions which were handed down through the generations. People were also very much in tune with the seasons and had customs to go with particular times of the year. Certain times of the year such as Halloween, Bonfire Night, New Year’s Day and May Day had their own special customs in this area.


New Year’s Day

  • Never pay out money on New Year's Day
  • Water whether dirty or clean or ashes should not be thrown out.
  • The floor should be brushed towards the hearth, not out the door.

Lent

The custom in the 19th century was to have dancers and fiddlers performing in the house on Shrove  Tuesday with neighbors gathering in for the fun before Lent began. The 40 days of Lent were then spent in fasting and prayer as was the custom until recent times.

For St. Patrick's Day people in the Ballyshannon area made crosses which they wore on their garments as far back as the 1840s and probably much earlier. 

May Eve 

  • Yellow flowers like buttercups from the meadows were collected on the eve of May day. They were made into wreaths and hung over doors. These flowers were supposed to bring good luck all the year round to those who passed under them. (A modern version of this custom has, for many years, been carried on by the McNamara family at West Rock who place buttercups. on their neighbours' window sills and doorways. No doubt other areas have similar customs).
  • On the evening before the First of May ashes were put on the doorstep and in the morning, if a footprint was turned inwards in the ashes, it was a sign of a marriage in the house, but if the footprint pointed outwards it was a sign of a death in the house.
  • If you got up before the sun rose on May morning and washed your face in the dew you would be good-looking for the rest of that year.

Bonfire Night

  • The night of St. John’s Day was bonfire night and before leaving the fire the mother followed by the family walked around the fire and said three Our Fathers and three Hail Marys in honour of St. John. The father of the house then put some of the coal in a bucket and dropped one in the cornfield, one in the potato field and so on, to bring good luck to the crop. 
  • Another version of the Bonfire custom was to spread the dying embers on crops for good luck and to drive the cattle through the bonfire.
  • Bonfire night has always been one of the highlights of the year when local communities came together to play and mark the seasons. In June 1844 the people looked forward to bonfire night but the morning was stormy however it calmed down later and there was a beautiful evening. In 1844 Mary Anne Sheil, who lived in College Street, in the house now occupied by the HSE at the entrance to St. Patrick's Church car park, counted 21 bonfires from the skylight window of her home.
In the 1930s there were bonfires all over town in places like Milltown, The Cornmarket, Erne Street, Falgarragh, The Kiln Well, The Rock and the Port.

    Halloween Night

    On Halloween night it was the custom that the girls of the house turned their petticoats inside out and left them in front of the fire. The first man to enter the house turned one of the petticoats. The daughter that the petticoat belonged to would marry that man. 


    Another custom was that after the fire was raked the girls put a bowl of water on the hearth and the first man that moved it was a husband of the girl who had left the water.

    Old Halloween

    This was celebrated on the 11th November in the 19th century. Halloween as we know it was called New Halloween. Parlour games played in Ballyshannon included placing apple peels over the door to see who would come under each family members peel. A future marriage a possibility! 

    A lottery with a difference was also held again with a view to marriage. Names were written down of famous national and well known locals and again great fun  and discussion in seeing what marriage matches it threw up. 

    Wedding Custom

     A wedding custom was that on the night of the wedding there nearly always was a dance in the house of the bride. Strawboys came to the house and the bridegroom was supposed to go out and give the boys a treat and some money. Then they went away dancing and singing and wishing the bride and groom luck. 

    The bringing home or the hauling home was another custom with a party for the wedding couple lasting all night.

    Date for Your Diary

    Famine Walk Monday 5th August 2013

    On Monday 5th August 2013 at 2.30 p.m. I will be conducting a Famine Walk from the Paupers' Graveyard to the Workhouse in Ballyshannon. The meeting point is the Abbey Centre in Ballyshannon and I hope you can make it as part of the Ballyshannon 400 Week. On the Famine Walk we will hear  stories from the Great Famine of the 1840s and recall the suffering endured by our ancestors in this area. All welcome. The pace will be leisurely.The workhouse at Ballyshannon housed people from:

    • The  Belleek area as far as Churchill, Devenish and Boho in County Fermanagh 
    • Kinlough, Glenade and Tullaghan areas in County Leitrim 
    • Ballyshannon, Bundoran, Ballintra and Rossnowlagh areas in County Donegal.     

    If you know anyone from the areas above please invite them to come along to remember people from their area who are forgotten today, some of whom would be buried in the Paupers’ graveyard.  



                                                                                                                                        Anthony Begley


      
    Lots Happening for Ballyshannon 400 Gathering and Other Events



    A New Local History Book suitable for those at Home and Away

    A new book entitled: "Ballyshannon. Genealogy and History"  reveals newly researched history and genealogy of the town, extending as far as the Rossnowlagh, Cashelard, Corlea, Clyhore, Higginstown and Finner areas. Includes the parishes of Kilbarron and Magh Ene.

    The genealogy material provides detailed guidelines for anyone tracing their roots in the area or anywhere in County Donegal or Ireland. 

    The book contains 500 pages and is richly illustrated with stunning colour, aerial photography, original illustrations and rare photographs of the area not seen before.

    Topics include: How to go about Tracing your Roots/The first settlers in the area/ Newly researched history of the town of Ballyshannon and the townlands in Kilbarron and Mágh Éne parishes/ Records of the first travellers and tourists to Ballyshannon, Bundoran, Belleek, Rossnowlagh and Ballintra/An aerial guide to place names along the Erne from Ballyshannon to the Bar/Flora and Fauna of the area/ A history of buildings and housing estates in the locality/Graveyard Inscriptions from the Abbey graveyard, St. Joseph’s and St. Anne’s /Rolling back the years with many memories of the Great Famine, Independence struggle, hydro-electric scheme, Gaelic games, boxing, handball, Boy Scouts, soccer, mummers, characters, organisations, folklore and lots more.

    Book Available from Anthony Begley West Rock Ballyshannon. anthonyrbegley@hotmail.com  Enquiries welcome for postal and other details. Also available at The Novel Idea Bookshop Ballyshannon, Ballyshannon and District Museum, Ballyshannon Tourist Office, The Four Masters Bookshop Donegal Town.

    The blogs are original and are not taken from the book above.

    Ballyshannon Musings:  Good to hear that people from the Ballyshannon area are enjoying the blog worldwide and the site has received thousands of hits. The site is called Ballyshannon Musings and there are lots of back stories available on the archive on the site. Copy this link and it can be googled at:



    Next Week' Blog on Saturday 27th July "Cholera and Famine in the Ballyshannon Area"





    Sunday, 14 July 2013

    Kildoney Fishermen's Victory

    No more on pleasant evenings we'll saunter down the Mall,
    When the trout is rising to the fly, the salmon to the fall.
    The boat comes straining on her net, and heavily she creeps,
    Cast off, cast off - she feels the oars, and to her berth she sweeps;
    Now fore and aft keep hauling, and gathering up the clew.
    Till a silver wave of salmon rolls in among the crew.
    Then they may sit, with pipes a-lit, and many a joke and 'yarn'
    Adieu to Belashanny; and the winding banks of Erne!


    William Allingham in his poem “Adieu to Belashanny,” written in the 19th century, regretted that due to emigration, many local people would no longer be able to sit beside the Erne at Ballyshannon to view the sight of  salmon trying to leap the spectacular Assaroe waterfall. Another memory the emigrants would have carried with them would be that of watching the fishermen in the Pool hauling in the salmon in their nets. No doubt many local people carried this picture with them to their new homes far from the winding banks of Erne. Today Allingham's poem is still a poweful image of what was  one of the finest salmon fishing rivers in these islands. 

    Background to the Court Case

    There was another side to the idyllic image of fishing on the Erne at Ballyshannon and that was that the fisheries were privately controlled originally by landlord and later by business interests.Crucially for the fishermen who took the court case, it was established that in  the 12th century the Cistercian monks at Abbey Assaroe had  fishing rights on the Erne and the native Gaelic chieftains the O’Donnells who had a castle at Ballyshannon were known as ‘the kings of the fishe.’ No exclusive fishing rights prevented local people from fishing at that period. 

    The Plantation of the 17th century saw the dispossession of the native owners and the introduction of planters who took not only  land but the rich fishing grounds on the Erne. The Folliotts who gained control at first, sold their title to the Conolly estate. Eventually fishing rights were passed on to Moore and Alexander of the Erne Fishery Company who were to become known as the Derry Company.

    Local Fishermen Unable to Fish on the Erne

    The salmon boxes located above the Assaroe Falls were emptied regularly for the Derry Company and the warehouse buildings (which still survive as the Mulligan building today) were used to cure and store the fish. In earlier times an ice house overlooking the Assaroe waterfall was used to store the fish.The Derry Company did employ some locals to fish for them and they also regularly hauled in the salmon in their nets at the Pool and further down the shore.

    Most local fishermen could not afford to fish on the Erne. These local fishermen were disappointed as they were deprived from fishing their native waters to earn a livelihood. Yet who would have the courage to do anything about it? Who would take on the system and assert their rights to fish unhindered in the waters which were visible in some instances from their homes? The answer lay with the fishermen from Kildoney who were joined by sympathetic fishermen from a wide area. Matters reached a head in June 1925.

    Kildoney Boat Sunk by Motor Boat in Channel. Crew Saved. Cleary.

    In June 1925 a telegram with the above sensational contents was sent by John Cleary, Cashel, to Frank Gallagher, solicitor, who happened to be in Dublin at the time. Gallagher was the solicitor for the Kildoney fishermen. On an early June morning in 1925, a chosen crew of local fishermen; John Cleary, Hugh Gavigan, Red Willie Goan, Mickey Mc Carthy, Willie Morrow and William Phillips, launched their small tar-and-canvas boat, out into the Erne between the Assaroe Falls and the Bar at Ballyshannon. A crowd had gathered at the Mall Quay to witness their challenge to the Fishery Company, including two members of the local Garda Siochána, who had been notified by the fishermen of their intentions.

    When the fishermen shot their net the Erne fishery motorboat appeared on the scene, rammed and sank their boat, seized their nets and accompanied them to the Mall Quay where the fishermen were greeted with acclaim. The fishermen and their legal team of Frank Gallagher and James Mc Loone  now faced court proceedings, which they had envisaged when they commenced their actions.

    Legal Arguments

    The District Court, The High Court and the Supreme Court had to adjudicate on the merits of the legal arguments on both sides. Indeed an appeal was subsequently made to the Privy Council in England which was to place the case in an international setting. (The Irish government abolished this right of appeal to the Privy Council  at the time).

    Local people in Kildoney and the surrounding Ballyshannon area were to become legal experts, as they discussed the merits of the Magna Carta, the Brehon Laws and the Privy Council. No other incident in our history provoked such legal debates and discussions with the history of Ballyshannon and the Erne Fisheries being examined and discussed.  It was established that at the time of the death of Henry 11 in 1189 Donegal was an unconquered Gaelic stronghold and as such exclusive fishing rights should not subsequently have been recognised. The Brehon Laws also backed up this claim.

     Victory for the Local Fishermen

    The courts found in favour of the Kildoney fishermen after protracted legal arguments. Great celebrations followed on the Mall Quay on the evening of 5th August 1933. 

    Frank Gallagher spoke passionately of their struggle:

    By our magnificent fight, we have righted a grievous wrong, a wrong that has root  three hundred years and more. No longer would native fishermen have to trawl the open ocean for fish in canvas boats while all the river-mouths around the coast were in the hands of foreigners with their spurious fishing rights. 

    The legal challenge was brought by the following men who will be commemorated on the memorial on 4th August 2013:
     

    John Cleary, Francis Coughlin, Patrick Coughlin, John Daly, Michael Daly, Richard Davis Jnr, Alex Duncan, Charles Furey, James Furey, Hugh Gavigan, John Gavigan Snr, Gerard Gillespie, James Gillespie, John Gillespie, Patrick Gillespie, Charles Gallogley, James Gallogley, John Goan, Patrick Goan, Willie Goan Snr, Joe Grimes, Patrick Haughey, William Hilley, Bernard Holland, James Keenan, Joseph Keenan, Michael Kennedy, William Kennedy, Alex Mc Cafferty, John Mc Cafferty, Patrick Mc Cafferty, Red John Mc Cafferty, John Mc Carty, Michael Mc Carty, Darby Mc Groarty, Frank Mc Neely, Tom Mc Neely, Michael Mc Phelim, Hugh Mooney, William Morrow(Legs), William Morrow, William Phillips, James Scanlon. Frank Gallagher, Master Keegan and Frank Gettins will also be commemorated on the memorial.

    Memorial to be Unveiled Sunday 4th August 2013

    The courageous campaign led by the Kildoney fishermen revealed that local people had rights to the natural resources of the river. It is appropriate that  80 years later, an impressive memorial to the memory of all who supported this fight will be unveiled by Cis Daly, Kildoney, at the Mall Quay on Sunday 4th August 2013. The event is being organised by their descendants, neighbours and the wider community. All welcome.

    Farewell to  you, Kildoney lads, and them that pull  an oar,
    A lug -  sail set, or haul a net, from the Point to Mullaghmore
    From Killybegs to bold Slieve-League, that ocean-mountain steep,
    Six hundred yards in air aloft, six hundred in the deep,
    From Dooran to the Fairy Bridge, and round by Tullen strand,
    Level and long, and white with waves, where gull and curlew stand;
    Head out to sea when on your lee the breakers you discern!-
    Adieu to all the billowy coast, and  winding banks of Erne!
    William Allingham



    Further details from Paddy Donagher Abbey Lane Ballyshannon, paddydonagher@gmail.com Telephone 00353 719851815. Tom McNeely, Kildoney and Joe Roper, Corker. Full details of week-end events on website  
    Date for Your Diary


    Famine Walk Monday 5th August 2013

    On Monday 5th August 2013 at 2.30 p.m. I will be conducting a Famine Walk from the Paupers' Graveyard to the Workhouse in Ballyshannon. The meeting point is the Abbey Centre in Ballyshannon and I hope you can make it as part of the Ballyshannon 400 Week. On the Famine Walk we will hear  stories from the Great Famine of the 1840s and recall the suffering endured by our ancestors in this area. All welcome. The pace will be leisurely.The workhouse at Ballyshannon housed people from:

    • The  Belleek area as far as Churchill, Devenish and Boho in County Fermanagh 
    • Kinlough, Glenade and Tullaghan areas in County Leitrim 
    • Ballyshannon, Bundoran, Ballintra and Rossnowlagh areas in County Donegal.     

    If you know anyone from the areas above please invite them to come along to remember people from their area who are forgotten today, some of whom would be buried in the Paupers’ graveyard.  


                                                                                                                                        Anthony Begley

    Upcoming Blogs July
    20th July “Local Customs for Special Days”
    27th July "Cholera and Famine in the Ballyshannon Area."
    Blogs for August 2013 will be listed next week.

    Lots Happening for Ballyshannon 400 Gathering and Other Events


    A New Local History Book suitable for those at Home and Away

    A new book entitled: "Ballyshannon. Genealogy and History"  reveals newly researched history and genealogy of the town, extending as far as the Rossnowlagh, Cashelard, Corlea, Clyhore, Higginstown and Finner areas. Includes the parishes of Kilbarron and Magh Ene.

    The genealogy material provides detailed guidelines for anyone tracing their roots in the area or anywhere in County Donegal or Ireland. 

    The book contains 500 pages and is richly illustrated with stunning colour, aerial photography, original illustrations and rare photographs of the area not seen before.

    Date for Your Diary


    Famine Walk 5th August 2013

    On Monday 5th August 2013 at 2.30 p.m. I will be conducting a Famine Walk from the Paupers' Graveyard to the Workhouse in Ballyshannon. The meeting point is the Abbey Centre in Ballyshannon and I hope you can make it as part of the Ballyshannon 400 Week. On the Famine Walk we will hear  stories from the Great Famine of the 1840s and recall the suffering endured by our ancestors in this area. All welcome. The pace will be leisurely.The workhouse at Ballyshannon housed people from:

    • The  Belleek area as far as Churchill, Devenish and Boho in County Fermanagh 
    • Kinlough, Glenade and Tullaghan areas in County Leitrim 
    • Ballyshannon, Bundoran, Ballintra and Rossnowlagh areas in CountyDonegal.     

    If you know anyone from the areas above please invite them to come along to remember people from their area who are forgotten today, some of whom would be buried in the Paupers’ graveyard.  


    Anthony Begley
    Topics include: How to go about Tracing your Roots/The first settlers in the area/ Newly researched history of the town of Ballyshannon and the townlands in Kilbarron and Mágh Éne parishes/ Records of the first travellers and tourists to Ballyshannon, Bundoran, Belleek, Rossnowlagh and Ballintra/An aerial guide to place names along the Erne from Ballyshannon to the Bar/Flora and Fauna of the area/ A history of buildings and housing estates in the locality/Graveyard Inscriptions from the Abbey graveyard, St. Joseph’s and St. Anne’s /Rolling back the years with many memories of the Great Famine, Independence struggle, hydro-electric scheme, Gaelic games, boxing, handball, Boy Scouts, soccer, mummers, characters, organisations, folklore and lots more.

    Book Available from Anthony Begley West Rock Ballyshannon. anthonyrbegley@hotmail.com  Enquiries welcome for postal and other details. Also available at The Novel Idea Bookshop Ballyshannon, Ballyshannon and District Museum, Ballyshannon Tourist Office, The Four Masters Bookshop Donegal Town.

    The blogs are original and are not taken from the book above.

    Ballyshannon Musings:  Good to hear that people from the Ballyshannon area are enjoying the blog worldwide and the site has received thousands of hits. Please let people with an interest in Ballyshannon and surrounding areas know about this site, particularly people who are not living locally and those who are abroad. The site is called Ballyshannon Musings and there are a number of back issues available on the internet. Copy this link and it can be googled at  http://ballyshannon-musings.blogspot.ie/ The site can be located on the internet (or by connecting to my Facebook page). New items will be posted every week on Ballyshannon Musings during 2013the year of “The Gathering”.