The following Geographical from the Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, by Samuel Lewis., transcribed & compiled by Teena.
ARBOE or ARDBOE
a parish, partly in the barony of Loughinsholin, county of Londonderry, but chiefly in the barony of Dungannon, 5 miles (E. N. E.) from Stewartstown; containing 8,148 inhabitants. A monastery was founded here by St. Colman, son of Aidhe, and surnamed, MUCAIDHE, whose reliques were long preserved in it: it was destroyed in 1166, by Rory Makang Makillmory Omorna, but there are still some remains.
The parish is situated on the shore of Lough Neagh, by which it is bounded on the east, and comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 33,504 statute acres, of which 21,000 form part of Lough Neagh, and 56 are in small islands. The greater portion is under tillage, and there are some tracts of good meadow, about 50 acres of woodland, and 1000 acres of bog. The system of agriculture is improved; the soil is fertile, and the lands generally in a high state of cultivation. There are several large and handsome houses, the principal of which is Elogh, the residence of Mrs. MACKAY. The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Armagh, and in the patronage of the Provost and Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin: the tithes amount to £507. 13. 10½ . The church, a neat small edifice, was erected in the reign of William and Mary, on a site 2 miles westward from the ruins of the ancient abbey. The glebe-house is a handsome building and the glebe comprises 212 acres.
The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church; the chapel, a spacious and handsome edifice, is situated at New Arboe and there are 2 altars in the open air, where divine service is performed alternately once every Sunday. There is a place of worship for Presbyterians in connection with the Seceding synod. There are 4 public schools, in which about320 boys and 240 girls are taught; and there are also 5 private schools, in which are about 140 boys and 50 girls, and 5 Sunday schools. On the western shore of Lough Neagh are the ruins of the ancient abbey, which form an interesting and picturesque feature and the remains of an old church, of which the walls are standing. Near them is an ancient ornamented stone cross in good preservation.
ARDSTRAW or ARDSRATH (Ardstra)
A parish, partly in the barony of Omagh but chiefly in that of Strabane; containing, with the post-town of Newtown-Stewart, 21,212 inhabitants. This place was distinguished, under the name of Ardsrath, as the seat of an ancient bishoprick, over which St. Eugene, or Oen, presided about the year 540. At a very early period a small stone church or chapel existed here and the names are recorded of several bishops who presided over the see, which, in 597, was removed to Maghera and finally to Derry, in 1158. This place suffered repeatedly by fire and appears to have been destroyed about the close of the 12th century.
The parish, which is situated on the road from Dublin to Londonderry, comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 44,974¼ statute acres, of which 537¼ are covered with water. The surface is pleasingly diversified with hill and dale and enlivened by the rivers Struell, Glenelly and Derg, which, after flowing through the parish, unite in forming the river Morne, which abounds with trout and salmon and also with several large and beautiful lakes, of which 3 are within the demesne of Baron’s Court.
The land is chiefly arable, with pasture intermixed and the soil in the valleys is fertile, but there are considerable tracts of mountain and several extensive bogs. Limestone is found in several places at the base of the mountain called Bessy Bell, the whole of the upper portion of which is clay slate; on the summit of another mountain, called Mary Gray, it is found with clay-slate at the base and round the southern base of the former are detached blocks of freestone scattered in every direction. There are also some quarries of limestone at Cavandaragh; the stone is raised in blocks, or lamina, from ¼ of an inch to 3 feet in thickness. The mountains within and forming a portion of the boundary of the parish are Bessy Bell, Douglas and Mary Gray, which present beautiful and romantic scenery, particularly in the neighbourhood of Newtown-Stewart and the view from the high grounds, including the lakes and rivers by which the parish is diversified, is truly picturesque.
There are 5 bridges; 1 at Moyle, of 3 elliptic arches; a very ancient bridge at NewtownStewart, of 6 arches; another of 6 arches at Ardstraw and a modern bridge of 3 arches on the Derry road. The principal seats are Baron’s Court, the residence of the Marquess of Abercorn; Castlemoyle, of the Rev. R. H. NASH D.D.; Woodbrook, of R. M.TAGERT Esq.; Newtown Stewart Castle, of Major CRAWFORD; Coosh, of A. COLHOUN; and Spa Mount, of E. SPROULE Esq. There were formerly several bleach-greens in the parish, but at present there is only 1 in operation, which is at Spa Mount, on the river Derg and in which about 16,000 pieces are annually bleached and finished, principally for the London market.
The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Derry and in the patronage of the Provost and Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin: the tithes amount to £1094. The church is a large and beautiful edifice with a handsome spire and is situated in the town of Newtown-Stewart; a grant of £478 for its repair has been lately made by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. A new church, or chapel of ease, is about to be built at Baron’s Court, or Magheracreegan, for which the late Board of First Fruits granted £600, now in the hands of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. The glebe-house has a glebe of 681 acres attached to it, of which 461¾ are in a state of cultivation. The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church, but is divided into East and West Ardstraw; there are chapels at Newtown-Stewart, Dragish (Dregish) and Cairncorn. There are 5 places of worship for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster, at Ardstraw, Newtown-Stewart, Douglas Bridge, Clady and Garvetagh; that of Ardstraw is aided by a 2nd class grant and those of Newtown-Stewart, Douglas-Bridge, and Clady have each a 3rd class grant. There are also 2 places of worship for Presbyterians of the Seceding Synod, 1 at Drumligagh of the 1st class, and the other at Newtown-Stewart of the 2nd class and there are a meeting-house for Primitive and 2 for Wesleyan Methodists. The parochial school at Newtown-Stewart is aided by an annual donation from the rector and there are 15 other public schools in different parts of the parish and 17 private schools; in the former are 1600 and in the latter about 780, children: and 35 Sunday schools. The poor are supported by voluntary contributions, aided by the interest of £100 in the 3½ per cents, being a sum due to the parish, which was recovered about 20 years since by process of law and by act of vestry added to the poor fund.
There are numerous interesting remains of antiquity in the parish, the most ancient of which are those of the monastery and cathedral of Ardsrath, near the village, consisting chiefly of the foundations of that part of the building which was formerly used as the parish church, the remains of some very beautiful crosses of elaborate workmanship, and several upright stones and columns richly fluted; but the churchyard, which was very extensive, has been contracted by the passing of the public road, in the formation of which many remains of antiquity were destroyed. Nearly adjoining is a ruin which tradition points out as the bishop’s palace and which was occupied as an inn when the Dublin road passed this way. About 3 miles above Ardstraw Bridge and situated on a gentle eminence, are the picturesque ruins of Scarvaherin abbey, founded by Turloch Mac Dolagh, in 1456, for Franciscan friars of the 3rd order, and on its dissolution granted by Queen Elizabeth to Sir Henry PIERS and near Newtown Stewart is the site of the friary of Pubble, which appears to have been an appendage to Scarvaherin and was granted at the same time to Sir Henry PIERS; of the latter, nothing but the cemetery remains. In Newtown-Stewart are the extensive and beautiful remains of the castle built by Sir Robert NEWCOMEN, in 1619; it is in the Elizabethan style, with gables and clustered chimneys. Jas. II. lodged in this castle, on his return from Lifford in 1589 and by his orders it was dismantled on the day following; with the exception of the roof, it is nearly perfect.
At the foot of the mountain called Bessy Bell are the ruins of an ancient building called Harry Ouree’s Castle, concerning which some remarkable legends are preserved by the country people; they consist of 2 circular towers, with a gateway between them and some side walls, which overhang their base more than 8 feet. Near the end of the bridge at Newtown-Stewart is a large mound of earth, evidently thrown up to protect the ford, which in early times must have been of importance as the only pass through the vast range of the Munterlony mountains. There was a similar fort on the ford of Glenelly, near Moyle Castle and another at the old ford at the village of Ardstraw. On the summit of Bessy Bell, or Boase-Baal, on which in pagan times sacrifice is supposed to have been offered to Baal or Bel, is a large and curious cairn; there are also cairns on the summit of Mary Gray, and more than 30 forts in the parish, nearly in a line from east to west, which were designed to guard the passes on the rivers of Glenelly and Derg, About a mile below Newtown-Stewart, in the bed of the river, is a single upright stone, called the “Giant’s Finger” and lately “Flinn’s rock” respecting which many strange traditions are preserved in the neighbourhood.
A village, in the parish of Ardstraw, barony of Strabane 3 miles (W. N. W.) from Newtown-Stewart: the population is returned with the parish. This place, formerly Ardsrath, is of high antiquity and was distinguished for its ancient and greatly celebrated abbey, noticed in the preceding description of the parish of Ardstraw. The village is situated on the river Derg, which is here wide and rapid and is crossed by an ancient stone bridge of 6 arches, over which the old road from Londonderry to Dublin formerly passed: it contains 32 houses, some of which are well built, but several of them are old and in a neglected state. There were formerly 6 fairs held in the village, which were large and well attended, but they have been discontinued for some time. There is a place of worship for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster and a public school.
ARDTREA or ARTREA
A parish, partly in the barony of Dungannon, county of Tyrone and partly in the barony of Loughinsholin county of Londonderry; containing, with the district or perpetual curacy of Woods-chapel and the greater part of the market and post-town of Moneymore, 12,390 inhabitants, of which number, 7471 are in the district of Woods-chapel. During the rebellion of the Earl of Tyrone, in the reign of Elizabeth, this place was the scene of numerous conflicts and in the parliamentary war in 1641, it was involved in many of the military transactions of that period. In 1688-9, a sanguinary battle took place here between the adherents of Jas. II., who were in possession of the forts of Charlemont and Mountjoy and the forces of Wm. III., commanded by Lord BLAYNEY, who, having possession of Armagh, was desirous of assisting the garrisons of Inniskillen and Derry and for this purpose determined to force a passage to Coleraine, which he accomplished, after defeating a detachment of the enemy’s forces at the bridge of Ardtrea. The parish, which is also called Ardtragh, is situated partly on Lough Beg, but chiefly on Lough Neagh and is intersected by the Ballinderry river and by numerous roads, of which the principal are those leading respectively from Armagh to Coleraine, from Omagh to Belfast and from Stewartstown to Moneymore. It contains, according to the Ordnance survey, 20,962¾ statute acres, of which 18,679¼ are in the county of Londonderry, including 2181½ in Lough Neagh, 317½ in Lough Beg and 26½ in the river Bann.
The soil is very various; the land is chiefly arable and is fertile and well cultivated, especially around Moneymore, on the estate belonging to the Drapers’ Company and on that belonging to the Salters’ Company round Ballyronan. There are several extensive tracts of bog in various parts, amounting in the whole to nearly 3000 acres and affording an ample supply of fuel. Freestone of every variety, colour and quality is found here in abundance; and there is plenty of limestone. At a short distance from the church, on the road to Cookstown, is an extraordinary whin-dyke, which rises near Ballycastle in the county of Antrim, passes under Lough Neagh and on emerging thence near Stewart Hall, passes through this parish and into the mountain of Slievegallion, near Moneymore. Spring Hill, the pleasant seat of W. Lenox CONYNGHAM Esq., is an elegant and antique mansion, situated in a rich and highly improved demesne, embellished with some of the finest timber in the country. The other principal seats are Lakeview, the residence of D. GAUSSEN Esq.; Warwick Lodge, of W. BELL Esq. and Ardtrea House, of the Rev. J. Kennedy BAILIE D.D. The farm-houses are generally large and well built and most of the farmers, in addition to their agricultural pursuits, carry on the weaving of linen cloth for the adjoining markets. There is an extensive bleach-green, which, after having been discontinued for some years, has been repaired and is now in operation. The primate’s court for the manor of Ardtrea is held at Cookstown monthly, for the recovery of debts under £5 and its jurisdiction extends over such lands in the parishes of Lissan, Derryloran, Kildress, Arboe, Desertcreight, Ardtrea, Clonoe, Tamlaght, Ballinderry and Donaghendrie, as are held under the see.
The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Armagh, and in the patronage of the Provost and Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin: the tithes amount to £738. 9. 3¾ . The church, an elegant edifice in the later English style, was erected in 1830, near the site of the ancient church; the principal entrance is a composition of very elegant design and, from its elevated site, the church forms a very pleasing object in the landscape. The glebe-house is a large and handsome residence, built of hewn freestone by the late Dr. ELRINGTON, then rector of the parish and subsequently Bishop of Ferns, aided by a gift of £100, and a loan of £1050, from the late Board of First Fruits: the glebe comprises 115¼ acres. The district church, called Woods-chapel, is situated at a distance of 10 miles from the mother church: the living is a perpetual curacy in the patronage of the Rector. In the R. C. divisions the parish is the head of a union or district called Moneymore, which comprises this parish and part of that of Desertlyn and contains 3 chapels, 1 at Moneymore, 1 at Ballymenagh, and the 3rd at Derrygaroe. There are 2 places of worship for Presbyterians at Moneymore, 1 for those in connection with the Synod of Ulster, of the 1st class, built by the Drapers Company at an expense of £4000; and 1 for those in connection with the Seceding Synod, of the 2nd class, built by subscription on a site given by the Drapers Company, who also contributed £250 towards its erection. There are 3 schools aided by the Drapers Company and 1 at Ballymulderg the whole affording instruction to about 170 boys and 170 girls and there are also 2 pay schools. An ancient urn very elaborately ornamented was found in a kistvaen, (tomb) on opening a tumulus in the townland of Knockarron, in 1800 and is now in the possession of John LINDESAY Esq. of Loughry.
AUGHALOO or AUGHLOE
A parish, in the barony of Dungannon; containing, with the post-town of Caledon, 10,140 inhabitants. This parish, which is the most easterly in the county, is bounded on the east by the river Blackwater and is situated on the mail coach road from Armagh to Aughnacloy; it contains, according to the Ordnance survey, 19,583¾ statute acres, of which 140 are under water. The surface is pleasingly undulated and well planted and watered; the lands are in a high state of cultivation, the system of agriculture is greatly improved and there is little waste land and only a small portion of bog. There are several gentlemen’s seats, of which the principal are Caledon Hill, the seat of the Earl of Caledon; Crilly, of R. PETTIGREW Esq; Rahaghy of N. MAYNE Esq.; and Drummond, or Cottage Hill, of H. MOORE Esq.
It is in the diocese of Armagh and is a rectory and vicarage, forming part of the corps of the archdeaconry of Armagh and the union of Carrenteel; the tithes amount to £609. 4. 7. The church is situated in the town of Caledon. A perpetual curacy was founded here in 1807, by the archdeacon, who endowed it with £50 per annum and 26½ acres of glebe; it has also an augmentation from Primate Boulter’s fund and is in the gift of the Archdeacon. In the R. C. divisions this parish is the head of a union or district, comprising the parishes of Aughaloo and Carrenteel; the chapel is at Caledon. There are 3 places of worship for Presbyterians, at Minterburn, Crillig and Caledon, the last in connection with the Seceding Synod and of the 2nd class; there is also an Independent meeting-house, but no regular service is performed in it. The parochial school is at Caledon; there are male and female schools at Ramakit, Curlough Minterburn and Dyan, built and chiefly supported by the Earl of Caledon; a school near the demesne was built and is supported by the Countess of Caledon, in which 40 girls are clothed and educated; and a school at Rahaghy is under the National Board. These schools afford instruction to about 580 boys and 370 girls and there are also 5 private schools, in which are about 100 boys and 150 girls, and 14 Sunday schools. Close to a stream that separates the union of Carrenteel from the parish of Errigal Kerogue is a sulphuric spring, resembling in its properties the Harrogate waters, but wanting their purgative quality: it has been enclosed in a small house erected over it by an individual who had received benefit from the use of the water. At Glenarb are the remains of a monastery with a burial-ground and numerous stone crosses have been discovered.
A market-town (formerly a parliamentary borough), in the parish and barony of Clogher, 2 miles (N. E. by E.) from Clogher, and 75¼ (N. N.W.) from Dublin; containing 726 inhabitants. Of the origin and early history of this place but very little is known. In the reign of Elizabeth, Lord Deputy Mountjoy placed in it a powerful garrison to defend the pass through the valley in which it is situated, that retained possession for some time, constantly harassing the army of the Earl of Tyrone till his final surrender at Mellifont. From this place the queen’s army marched when it crossed the mountains to give battle to the earl at Magheralowney, where that chieftain’s principal magazine was taken, in June 1602.
At the time of the English settlement of Ulster, by virtue of a decree by James I. in 1611, Sir Thomas RIDGWAY Knt., Treasurer at War for Ireland, received, in 1613, a grant of 315 acres of land in the barony of Clogher, under an agreement that he should, within 4 years, settle on a parcel of land called Agher 20 Englishmen or Scots, chiefly artificers and tradesmen, to be incorporated as burgesses and made a body politic within the said 4 years and should set apart convenient places for the site of the town, churchyard, market-place, and public school; he was likewise to assign to the burgesses houses and lands and 30 acres of commons. Sir Thomas received also, in 1611, the grant of a market and 2 fairs to be held here and in 1613, the town and precincts, with the exception of a fort and bawn called Spur Royal castle, which had been erected, were created a borough. Besides the 315 acres of land on which he was to found the borough, Sir Thomas received a grant of 2000 acres called Portclare and according to Pynnar’s report in 1619, it appears that, besides the fort and bawn, he had built 16 houses of stone in the town, which were inhabited by English artificers who were burgesses and had each 2 acres of land and commons for their cattle. In 1630, Sir James ERSKINE Knt., then proprietor of the manor, received a grant of 2 additional fairs. On the breaking out of the war in 1641, a garrison was stationed here by Col. CHICHESTER and Sir Arthur TYRINGHAM and the castle was gallantly defended against the insurgent forces, who, in an attempt to take it by storm, were repulsed. This defeat so exasperated their leader, Sir Phelim O’NIAL, that in revenge he ordered his agent, MacDONNEL, to massacre all the English Protestants in 3 adjacent parishes. Sir James ERSKINE dying without male issue, the extensive manor of Portclare, which in 1665 was confirmed in the family by Chas. II., under its present name of Favour Royal, was divided between his 2 daughters, who married into the families of RICHARDSON and MOUTRAY and the respective portions are still in the possession of their descendants, of whom the present proprietor of Augher castle has assumed the additional surname and arms of BUNBURY. The castle was finally dismantled by order of parliament and continued in a state of dilapidation and neglect till 1832, when it was restored and a large and handsome mansion built adjoining it by Sir J. M. Richardson BUNBURY Bart. The ancient building consisted of a pentagonal tower surrounded by a wall 12 feet high and flanked by 4 circular towers: the wall has been removed, but 1 of the round towers has been restored and the entrance gateway has also been removed and rebuilt on an elevated situation commanding some fine views, in which the remains of the old castle form an interesting object: the mansion is situated in a well-wooded demesne of 220 acres and upon the margin of a beautiful lake.
The town is situated on the river Blackwater, over which is a bridge adjoining it and in a fertile valley between 2 ridges of lofty mountains clothed with verdure to the summit, of which the highest, Knockmany, is covered on its south side with thriving plantations. It consists of 1 principal street, from which another branches at right angles on the south leading to Clogher and has a penny post to Aughnacloy. Several new roads have been lately formed and not far distant is an excellent bog. The lands in the neighbourhood are well cultivated. Besides Augher Castle, there are several gentlemen’s seats near the town, described in the article on the parish of Clogher. The market is on Monday and has lately become a good market for oats and fairs for the sale of cattle, sheep, pigs and other commodities, are held on the last Monday in every month, in the market-place set apart under the original grant at the bottom of Clogher street; the market-house is the only public building in the town. The collection of tolls and customs has been discontinued by the proprietors of the manor. Here is a chief station of the constabulary police.
The charter granted in 1613 incorporated the inhabitants under the style of “The Burgomaster Free Burgesses and Commonalty of the Borough of Agher” with the privilege of holding a civil court of record with jurisdiction to the extent of 5 marks and of returning 2 members to the Irish parliament, which they continued to exercise till the Union, when the £15,000 compensation money for the abolition of its franchise was awarded to James, Marquess of Abercorn. Since that period no corporate officers have been appointed and the town is now entirely within the jurisdiction of the county magistrates, who hold petty sessions irregularly. The seneschal of the manor holds a court here every 3rd Monday, for the recovery of debts to the amount of 40s., the jurisdiction of which extends into the parishes of Errigal-Kerogue, Errigal Trough, Ballygawley and Clogher and a manorial court leet is held once in the year. Divine service is performed in the market-house every Sunday by the officiating clergyman of Clogher. A school for boys was built on part of the Commons Hill, or Fair Green,granted by the proprietors of the manor to the deans of Clogher, in trust for a school-house and with funds provided from the “Lord-Lieutenant’s School Fund” it is supported by private subscriptions and by a weekly payment of 1d. from each pupil and a school for girls is supported in a similar manner. (Population in 1861, 494)
A market and post-town, in the parish of Carrenteel, barony of Dungannon, 16 miles (S. E.) from Omagh and 75½ (N.N. W.) from Dublin; containing 1742 inhabitants. This place, which is on the confines of the county of Monaghan, is situated on the river Blackwater and on the mail coach road from Dublin to Londonderry. The town was built by Acheson MOORE Esq. who also erected the parish church and it is now the property of R. Montgomery MOORE Esq., his descendant: it consists of 1 principal street of considerable length, from which 3 smaller streets branch off, and contains 365 houses, of which the greater number are thatched buildings, although there are several good houses of brick roofed with slate and in the immediate neighbourhood are several gentlemen’s seats, which are described in the articles on their respective parishes. The market is on Wednesday and is very well attended and fairs for live stock are held on the 1st Wednesday in every month. There is a convenient market-house. A constabulary police station has been established here and petty sessions are held every alternate Monday. The church, a spacious and handsome edifice was erected in 1736. There are a R. C. chapel and places of worship for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster and for Primitive and Wesleyan Methodists. The parochial school is supported by the archdeacon and there are 3 other schools. At Garvey, 1 mile distant, is a very valuable mineral spring, which has been found efficacious in dyspeptic and cutaneous diseases; it is enclosed within a large building and near it is a house affording excellent accommodation to those who frequent it for the benefit of their health. Dr. Thomas CAMPBELL, author of Strictures on the History of Ireland, was a native of this place. (Population in 1861, 1532)
A parish, in the barony of Strabane, 8 miles (N. N. E.) from Armagh; containing 7024 inhabitants. This place is situated on the Munterlowney Water and is bounded on the north by the Spereen (Sperin) mountains, which are the highest in the county and among which the mountain of Mullaghcairn rises to a very considerable height above the rest; its summit, according to the Ordnance survey, being 1778 feet above the level of the sea. The base of this mountain is a vast accumulation of sand and water-worn stones, rising to an elevation of 900 feet and in it is an extraordinary fissure called Gortin Gap, through which the road from Omagh leads to the village of Gortin. The parish, according to the same survey, comprises 47,921¾ statute acres (including 178½ under water) of which the greater portion is mountain and bog, but the former affords good pasturage and the latter an abundance of fuel: the vale of Gortin is fertile and well cultivated. Through the range of mountains opposite to Mullaghcairn is a pass called Barnes Gap, in which various indications of copper ore have been discovered. In these mountains is Beltrim, the handsome residence of A. W. C. HAMILTON Esq., proprietor of the principal part of the parish and in a large bog is the ancient fortress of Loughnacranagh, where the Earl of Tyrone sheltered himself from the British troops under Lord Deputy Mountjoy, who despatched Sir Henry Dockwra from Omagh, in June 1602, to give battle to the Irish prince, whom he defeated.
The inhabitants are principally employed in agriculture and in the breeding of cattle and the weaving of linen cloth is carried on in several of the farm-houses. The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Derry, separated from Upper Badony by order of council in 1706 and in the patronage of the Bishop: the tithes amount to £750. The church, situated in the village of Gortin, is a small neat edifice with a campanile turret at the west end. There is neither glebe nor glebe-house at present, but a house is about to be built on a glebe of 30 acres of land granted for that purpose by Mr. HAMILTON. The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church and contains 2 chapels, 1 at Ruskey, the other at Greencastle. There is a place of worship for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster. The parochial school is supported by the rector and Mr. HAMILTON and there is a school at Ruskey under the trustees of Erasmus Smith’s charity and others at Liscable, Winneyduff, Caronhustion, and Broughderg. These schools afford instruction to about 180 boys and 120 girls: there are also 11 private schools, in which are about 450 children and 8 Sunday schools.
A parish, in the barony of Strabane, 4 miles (N. N. E.) from Newtownstewart; containing 5715 inhabitants. A monastery for Franciscans of the 3rd order was founded at Corrick about the year 1465; it continued to flourish till the dissolution and in the reign of Jas. I. was given, with all its possessions, to Sir Henry PIERS, who soon after sold it to Sir Arthur CHICHESTER; it was subsequently granted to the HAMILTON family, whose descendant is the present proprietor. There are some highly picturesque remains of this abbey, affording an idea of the original extent and elegance of the buildings. Here was also a strong castle or fortress, of which there are some remains. The district appears to have been distinguished at an early period as the scene of various important battles and in the fastnesses of its mountains the lawless and daring found a secure asylum. In the reign of Elizabeth O’NIAL was defeated here with the loss of all his baggage, plate, and treasures, and compelled to make his escape across the river Bann to his castle of Roe.
The parish comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 38,208¼ statute acres, including 150½ under water: nearly three fourths are mountain and bog and the remainder, with the exception of a small portion of woodland, is arable. The state of agriculture is progressively improving; extensive tracts of mountain have been recently enclosed and brought into cultivation and great portions of bog and mountain may still be reclaimed. Part of the Sawel mountain is within its limits and according to the Ordnance survey, rises to an elevation of 2235 feet above the level of the sea. Most of the farmers and cottagers unite with agricultural pursuits the weaving of linen and great numbers of cattle and horses are bred and pastured in the extensive mountain tracts. Fairs are held on the 16th of every month for the sale of cattle, horses, and pigs and are in general numerously attended. A constabulary police force has been stationed here. A manorial court is held monthly, at which debts under £2 are recoverable and a court of petty sessions is held every alternate week at Gortin.
This parish was formerly much more extensive than it is at present; an act of council was obtained, by which it was divided into the parishes of Upper and Lower Badony and a church was soon afterwards built for the latterm at Gortin. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Derry and in the patronage of the Bishop: the tithes amount to £396. 18. 6. The church is an ancient structure, in the early English style, for the repair of which a grant of £108 has been lately made by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. The glebe-house, a handsome residence, was built in 1821, by aid of a loan of £225 from the late Board of First Fruits; the glebe comprises 195 acres, of which 86 are mountain. The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church; there are 2 chapels, of which one, near the foot of the mountain, is a spacious building. There are places of worship for Presbyterians of the Synod of Ulster and of the Seceding Synod; the minister of the former officiates also in the adjoining parish of Lower Badony. The parochial male and female school is aided by a small annual payment bequeathed by the late C. HAMILTON Esq., but is chiefly supported by the rector. There are 2 schools situated respectively at Castledamp and Clogherney; a school at Corrick, supported by ? GARDINER Esq.; a male and female school at Glenroan, built and supported by Major HUMPHREYS and a school at Plumb Bridge, supported by subscription; there are also 4 pay schools and 2 Sunday schools.
BALLYCLOG or BALLYNECLOG
A Parish in the barony of Dungannon, 2 miles (N.) from Stewarts-town, on the road to Moneymore containing 2786 inhabitants. This place formed part of the lands granted by Jas. I. to Sir Andrew STEWART and with the exception of the lands belonging to the primate, which are in the manor of Cookstown, is wholly included within the manor of Stewarts-town. The parish is situated on Lough Neagh, and comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 7796¾ statute acres, of which 3092¼ are in the lough. The lands are chiefly under tillage; there are about 15 acres of woodland and 20 of bog; the system of agriculture is in a highly improved state and there is not a single acre of waste land in the parish. Coal, limestone, freestone, basalt, and quartz prevail and many rare plants grow here, which are not found in any other part of the country. Among the gentlemen’s seats the principal are Steuart Hall, the residence of the Earl of Castlesteuart; Belmont, of A. T. BELL, Esq.; and Drumkirn, of E. H. CAUFIELD, Esq. The lands of Belmont are an original freehold held by the BELL’s and DARRAGH’s for more than 300 years by allodial tenure, being the only lands in the country held by that title.
The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Armagh and in the patronage of the Lord-Primate; the tithes amount to £184. 12. 3¾. The church is a small plain ancient structure with a tower and spire and in the churchyard are the family vaults of the STEUARTS of Steuart Hall, and the BELLS of Belmont, to whom some handsome monuments of freestone have been erected. The glebe-house was built by aid of a gift of £100 from the late Board of First Fruits, in 1792: the glebe comprises 97 acres, of which 7 are exhausted bog and altogether unprofitable. In the R. C. divisions this parish forms part of the union or district of Steuart’s-town: the chapel is situated at the northern extremity of the parish. The Presbyterians have a place of worship at Brae. There is a school under the Trustees of Erasmus Smith’s Charity; also 3 schools, situated respectively at Upper Back, Eirey and Ochill, aided by annual donations from the Countess of Castlesteuart and a school at Drumkirn supported by Mrs. CAUFIELD. These schools afford instruction to about 230 boys and 200 girls and there is also a private school of about 30 children at Drumbanaway. A considerable rivulet in this townland disappears beneath a hill and appears again on the shore of Lough Neagh, at a distance of 3 miles and in the townland of Brae is aspring of excellent water issuing from between the basalt, freestone, and limestone strata, producing 990 gallons per minute and ebbing and flowing at the new moon.
A market and post-town and a parish, partly in the barony of Clogher and partly in that of Dungannon, 13 miles (S.E.) from Omagh and 74 miles (N. W. by N.) from Dublin; containing 4428 inhabit ants, of which number, 972 are in the town. The lands and manor of Moyenner and Balegalle were granted by Jas. I. to Capt. William TURVIN, but he neglecting to comply with the conditions of the grant, they were afterwards granted, in 1614, to Sir Gerard LOWTHER, who erected on the bank of a small river a very extensive castle, which he enclosed within a bawn of stone and lime and made a place of great strength. This castle was destroyed in 1642, by the insurgents under Sir Phelim O’NIAL: the walls and 2 towers of the bawn, with part of the castle walls, are still remaining; and a modern house has been recently erected on the site. The town is situated on the mail coach road from Dublin to Londonderry and consists of 3 streets and a market-place; it contains about 250 houses, some of which are large and well built and is the property of Sir Hugh STEWART, Bart., whose handsome mansion, Ballygawley House, is about 2 miles distant from the town. Innismagh, the seat of Col. VERNER; Anahoe, of H. CROSSLE Esq.; and Martray, of Mervyn STEWART, Esq., are within the parish. A small manufacture of gloves is carried on in the town, which, from the goodness of the materials and the neatness of the workmanship, are in general demand. There is an extensive brewery, that has acquired celebrity for the quality of its ale and a large distillery of malt whiskey has been established. The market is on Friday; it is amply supplied with provisions of all kinds and every alternate week a large quantity of linen cloth is exposed for sale. Fairs are held on the second Friday in every month, principally for the sale of cattle, sheep, and pigs. A constabulary police force has been stationed here; petty sessions are held once a fortnight and as the head of the manor of Moyenner or Ballygawley, manorial courts are held in the town for the recovery of debts not exceeding 40s.
This district was constituted a parish in 1830, by an order of council under the provisions of an act of the 7th and 8th of Geo. IV., when 18 townlands were separated from the parish of Errigal-Kerogue, in the barony of Clogher and 12 from that of Carrenteel, in the barony of Dungannon and formed into the parish of Ballygawley. These townlands are situated near the mountains and contain some good land, particularly on the north-east, where the soil is good and well cultivated.
The living is a Perpetual curacy, in the diocese of Armagh and in the alternate patronage of the Rectors of Errigal-Kerogue and Carrenteel. The curate’s income is £70 per annum, contributed in moieties by the rector of Errigal-Kerogue and the archdeacon of Armagh, as incumbent of Carrenteel. The church is a small but handsome edifice, in the later English style, erected at an expense of £1000, of which sum, £900 was a gift from the late Board of First Fruits. There is a place of worship in the town for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster, of the 3rd class; also a Baptist meeting-house in the parish. A boys school is supported by Sir Hugh STEWART and there is a school at Knockany, together affording instruction to about 130 boys and 130 girls; there is also a private school at Lisgonnell of about 70 boys and 30 girls.
BENBURB or BINBURB
A small village, in the parish of Clonfeacle, barony of Dungannon, 53 miles (N. N.W.) from Armagh; the population is returned with the parish. The first notice of this place under its present name occurs during the rebellion of the Earl of Tyrone, when the Lord-Deputy BOROUGH’S crossed the river Black water at Bean-Bhorb, at the head of the English forces, in June 1597 and being seized with a sickness of which he died a few days after at Newry, was succeeded in the command of the army by the Earl of Kildare, between whom, and the Earl of Tyrone, a severe engagement took place, in which the English were defeated, the Earl of Kildare mortally wounded and his 2 foster brothers slain; many of the English were killed in battle and numbers perished in the river. Sir Henry BAGNALL, with 4500 foot and 400 horse, marched against the Earl of Tyrone’s army, with which he had a severe conflict; many of the English cavalry were dreadfully mangled by falling into pits dug by the enemy and covered with branches of trees; but after surmounting these and other obstacles, BAGNALL made a vigorous attack upon the right wing of the Irish army commanded by the earl himself and on the left under O’DONNELL of Tyrconnell; a dreadful carnage ensued, the 2 armies being wholly engaged; but just when victory seemed to incline towards the English forces, BAGNALL was shot by a musket ball in the forehead and fell dead on the field. The English, thrown into confusion by the loss of their leader, were defeated and in their retreat to Armagh, many were trodden down by the Irish cavalry. This triumph of Tyrone was but of short duration; the Lord-Deputy Mountjoy defeated him in several battles and had driven him back to the camp at Bean-Bhorb, where, on the 15th of July 1601, a battle was fought, in which Tyrone was totally defeated and his army compelled to retreat in confusion to his chief fortress at Dungannon.
On the plantation of Ulster, Sir Robert WINGFIELD received from James I. a grant of 1000 acres of land at Benburb, by a deed dated Dec. 3rd, in the 8th year of that monarch’s reign and previously to the year 1619 he had erected a castle on these lands, built the present church and founded the village, which at that time contained 20 houses. This new establishment continued to flourish till the breaking out of the war in 1641, when the castle was surprised by order of Sir Phelim O’NIAL, on the night of the 22nd October, and the whole of the inmates put to death. On the 5th June, 1646, this place became the scene of a battle between Sir Phelim O’NIAL and Gen. MONROE; the former, with a large body of men, took up a position between 2 hills, with a wood in his rear and the river Blackwater, at that time difficult to pass, on his right. MONROE, with 6000 foot and 800 horse, marched from Armagh and approached by the opposite bank of the river, where, finding a ford, now called Battleford Bridge, he crossed and advanced to meet O’NIAL. Both armies were drawn up in order of battle, but instead of coming to a general engagement, the day was spent in skirmishing, till the sun, which had been favourable to the British, was declining, when, just as MONROE was beginning to retreat, he was attacked by the Irish, who made a furious onset. An English regiment commanded by Lord BLAYNEY fought with undaunted resolution till they were cut to pieces and their leader slain; the Scottish horse next gave way and the infantry being thrown into disorder, a general rout ensued. More than 3000 of the British forces were slain and their artillery and stores taken, while, on the part of O’NIAL, not more than 70 were killed.
The castle was soon after dismantled and has ever since remained in ruins; it was the largest in the county and, though weakly built, occupies a remarkably strong position on the summit of a limestone rock rising perpendicularly from the river Blackwater to the height of 120 feet. In the village is a small ancient out-post strongly built and probably forming an entrance to the castle, which on every other side was defended by natural barriers. Near the village are Tullydoey, the seat of J. Eyre JACKSON Esq., where also is the residence of T. EYRE Esq.; and Castle Cottage, of Capt. CRANFIELD. There were formerly very extensive bleach-greens near the village, and the mills and engines are still remaining; but the principal part of the business is carried on at Tullydoey, where large quantities of linen are finished for the English markets; the weaving of linen is also carried on to some extent. The Ulster canal, now in progress, passes on the eastern side of the river and village and is here carried through a hill of limestone, which has been excavated to the depth of 80 feet and is conducted longitudinally over the mill-race by an aqueduct of considerable length.
A court is held on the 1st Friday in every month for the manor of Benburb, which extends over 47 townlands and comprises 9210 acres, for the recovery of debts not exceeding £2. The parish church is situated close to the village, in which is also a place of worship for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster. The ruins of the castle are extensive and highly picturesque and near the walls was found a signet ring bearing the arms and initials of Turlogh O’NIAL, which is now in the possession of Mr. BELL, of Dungannon. The O’NIAL’s had a strong hold here of greater antiquity than the castle erected by Sir R. WINGFIELD. – See Clonfeacle
BEREGH (BERAGH) or LOWRYSTOWN
A market-town, in the parish of Clogherney barony of Omagh, 7 miles (S. E.) from Omagh, the population is returned with the parish. It is situated on the road from Omagh to Dungannon and consists of 1 long wide street containing about 70 houses, most of which are well built, though rapidly falling into decay. The former residence of the BELMORE family, proprietors of the town, an elegant and spacious mansion, is now in ruins and the town exhibits every appearance of neglect. The inhabitants are principally employed in agriculture, with which they combine the weaving of linen cloth. The patent for the market and fairs was granted under the name of Lowrystown; the market is on Wednesday and fairs are held regularly on the 1st Monday in every month for cattle, sheep, and pigs. A constabulary police force is stationed here and petty sessions are held every alternate week. One of the chapels for the R. C. parish of Clogherney is situated in the town.
A market and post-town, in the parish of Aughaloo, barony of Dungannon, 7 miles (W.) from Armagh and 70 miles (N. N. W.) from Dublin; containing 1079 inhabitants. This town, which was formerly named Kennard, as it is still frequently called by old people, although its manor, markets, and fairs, are all known by the modern name of Caledon, appears to have been more anciently called Aghaloo, it being the head of the parish of that name and the site of its venerable church, which was destroyed in the insurrection of 1641. It appears to have been an important military post from a very early period, having been the property and principal residence of one of the princely sept of O’NIAL. The 1st direct mention of it, is in 1498, when the Lord Deputy Kildare marched against Mac Art O’NIAL and having defeated and driven him from his strong hold in Kennard, presented the fortress and territory to the British ally, Tirlagh O’NIAL, whose descendants seem never to have been found in arms against England, until Sir Phelim O’NIAL headed the insurgents in 1641; for, in the settlement under Jas. I., Tirlagh O’NIAL had a grant of Kennard, with 4000 acres. Tirlagh built here a bawn of lime and stone, some time prior to 1619, near which he erected a castle. This was afterward the residence of Sir Phelim, from which he sallied on the evening of the 22nd October, 1641, having invited himself to supper with Lord Caulfield, at Charlemont. While at the supper table he made Lord Caulfield a prisoner and having separated his lordship’s family and the garrison, carried them prisoners to Kennard, in the castle of which he put his lordship to death. Sir Phelim, who had been educated as a Protestant in England, soon found himself at the head of 30,000 men, and waged a sanguinary warfare against the English. The whole of the county of Tyrone remained in the possession of the insurgents till 1646, when Gen. MUNROE, at the head of 6000 foot and 800 horse, marched against the Irish under Owen Roe O’NIAL. Having passed through Armagh, MUNROE, on the 6th June, crossed the Blackwater at the ford near Kennard, and fought the battle of Benburb, or, as it is here called, Batterford Bridge, in which he was defeated and many British officers and men were slain.
This town, which is situated on the river Blackwater and on the road from Armagh to Omagh, was, before 1816, a mean village, but is now, through the exertions of the Earl of Caledon, one of the best built towns in the North of Ireland; it contains 226 houses, nearly all of which are built of stone. The neighbourhood presents gentle swells and fertile vales, producing abundant crops. Close to the town are extensive flour-mills, erected by Lord Caledon in 1823, where above 9000 tons of wheat are ground annually, all of which is grown in the vicinity, where scarcely an acre of wheat was sown at the beginning of the century. The Ulster canal, now in the course of formation, passes through the Earl of Caledon’s demesne, a little to the westward of the town.
The market is on Saturday and is well attended and a fair is held on the 2nd Saturday in every month. A constabulary police force has been stationed here and there are barracks for the militia. A court for the recovery of debts under 40s. is held in the market-house, on the 1st Monday in each month, for the manor of Caledon, which extends into the parishes of Aughaloo and Clonfeacle, in the county of Tyrone and of Tynan, in that of Armagh and petty sessions are held in the town once a fortnight. There are several large and elegant houses in the neighbourhood, the principal of which is Caledon Hill, the seat of the Earl of Caledon, which stands in a richly ornamented demesne of 650 Irish acres, extending beyond the Blackwater into the county of Armagh. Not far distant are Tynan Abbey the residence of Sir James STRONGE Bart.; Glasslough, of Mrs. Wynne LESLIE; Crilley, of R. PETTIGREW Esq.; Rahaghy, of N. MAYNE Esq.; Annagh, of C. RICHARDSON Esq.; Drummond, of H. MOORE Esq. And the glebe-house, of the Rev. E. A. STOPFORD; besides several large and good houses in the town.
The living was made a perpetual curacy in 1807 and 20 acres were then added to the old glebe, which consisted only of 6½ acres, it is in the diocese of Armagh and patronage of the Archdeacon. The income is £100 per annum, arising from a salary of £50 paid by the archdeacon £15, the estimated value of 26 ½ acres of glebe land and £35. 2., paid by the trustees of Primate Boulter’s augmentation fund. The present church occupies the site of the ancient building and is the parish church of Aughaloo: it was erected by Primate ROBINSON, in 1767, during the incumbency of the Rev. C. W. CONGREAVE; the spire was built by the present Lord Caledon, by means of a bequest by his late father and the church was enlarged and otherwise improved by his lordship. It is a large and handsome edifice, in the later English style of architecture, comprising a nave, chancel, and south transept and for repairing it the Ecclesiastical Commissioners recently granted £175.8. 11. There are a R. C. chapel and a place of worship for Wesleyan Methodists. The parochial school is situated near the church: it was built in 1776 by Mr. CONGREAVE and is endowed with 3 acres of land and 3 tenements given by Primate ROBINSON and also with £8 per annum by Lord Caledon. Schools at Ramakit, Curlough, Dyan, and Minterburn are principally supported by Lord Caledon; there are national schools at Rahaghy and Mullinahorn and near the demesne is a female school built and supported by the Countess of Caledon, in which 40 girls are clothed and educated. Here is a dispensary and a mendicity association was established in 1829, to which Lord Caledon subscribes £100 per annum. Among the charitable bequests is £100 left by Alex. PRINGLE Esq. and vested in the funds, in the name of Lord Caledon; the interest, with that of several smaller sums, is applied to the relief of the poor.
Two extensive lakes existed here formerly, one on the north and the other on the south side of the town, with an island in the centre of each; that on the south has been drained and brought into cultivation; the north lake remains and the island in it, which borders on the glebe is beautifully planted. Almost the last vestiges of the ancient castle of the O’NIAL’s were removed a few years since and a clump of trees planted to mark the entrance into the courtyard; some of the flooring of the castle was subsequently discovered, about 4 feet beneath the surface of the ground, in forming the new road to Aughnacloy. Some old swords and other military instruments have been found in the neighbourhood and are preserved at Caledon Hill. Caledon gives the titles of Baron, Viscount and Earl to the family of ALEXANDER, in which the proprietorship of the town is vested. (Population in 1861, 823)
A parish, in the barony of STRABANE containing, with part of the town of Strabane, 6570 inhabitants. This parish, which is situated on the old road from Dublin to Londonderry and on the river Morne, comprises, according to the Ordnance survey (including 20¾ acres in Lyons island) 7505¾ statute acres, of which 103¾ are water, about 4540 are arable and pasture land and the remainder mountain and bog; 6743 acres are applotted under the tithe act and valued at £3078 per annum. The land, although in some places rocky, is generally very fertile, producing abundant crops, particularly in the vale of Morne.
The inhabitants combine the weaving of linen with their agricultural pursuits. The principal houses are Milltown Lodge, the residence of Major HUMPHRIES and the glebe house, of the Rev. J. SMITH. The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Derry and in the patronage of the Bishop the tithes amount to £468. The church is in the town of Strabane and is a large and handsome edifice, for the repairs of which the Ecclesiastical Commissioners have recently granted £184. 4. 2.; it was originally built as a chapel for the new town of Strabane, by the Earl of Abercorn in 1619, and has been used as the parish church since the destruction of the mother church, about the middle of the 17th century. The glebe-house was built by aid of a gift of £100 and a loan of £800 from the late Board of First Fruits, in 1832, upon the townland of Bierney, which constitutes the glebe, comprising 300 acres and is more than 3 miles from the church.
In the R. C. divisions the parish is the head of a union or district called Clonleigh and Camus, and comprising both those parishes: there are 2 chapels in the union, of which that of Camus, in the town of Strabane, is a large plain edifice. There is a large meeting-house for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster, of the 1st class and there are places of worship for Wesleyan and Primitive Methodists. The parochial school, on the glebe of Bierney, is supported by the trustees of Erasmus Smith’s charity and the master has a rent-free residence and 2 acres of land. At Milltown is a school for boys and girls, erected by the Marquess of Abercorn, a large and hand some building, with a separate residence for the master and mistress, each of whom receives £20 a year from the Marquess, who also aids a school established at Edymon and there is a national school at Strabane. About 160 boys and 100 girls are educated in these schools. Prior to 1829 a blue-coat school existed here, with an income of £30 per annum, which sum is now applied to clothing 12 boys. Near Milltown school are the dispensary and fever hospital belonging to Strabane; they are large and well ventilated buildings, admirably arranged for their purposes. The ruins of the old parish church are situated on the banks of the Mourne, it was founded by St. Colgan in 586 and destroyed during the insurrection of 1641.
A parish, partly in the barony of Omagh but chiefly in that of STRABANE, 2 miles (N.) from Omagh; containing, with the district parish of Mountfield, 13,589 inhabitants. This parish, according to the Ordnance survey, comprises 37,670½ statute acres, of which 34,626¾ are in Strabane and 3043¾ in Omagh; the applotment under the tithe act embraces 16,097 acres and 266¾ are water. The greater part of the land is reclaimed bog or mountain and about 1500 acres are woodland; in some places the land is remarkably good, particularly in the eastern part of the parish but not more than ¼ is cultivated. Part of the mountains of Bessy Bell, Mary Gray, and Mullaghcairn are in this parish, and afford good pasturage for cattle to their very summits. The inhabitants combine with agricultural pursuits the spinning of flax and weaving of linen. There is abundance of freestone, with limestone of inferior quality and several indications of coal are met with. Gortin gap, through which a road runs from Omagh to Gortin, is a deep ravine stretching in a northern and southern direction through Mullaghcairn or Cairntogher, which is the highest mountain in the county.
There are several handsome houses in the parish, the principal of which are Mountjoy Cottage, the residence of C. J. GARDINER Esq.; Mount Pleasant, of the Rev. C. CREGGAN; Facary Lodge, of Sir W. M’MAHON Bart.; Mountfield Lodge of the Rev. Mr. STACK; Lislimanahan of Capt. HILL; Lisanally, of G. NORRIS Esq.; Millbank, of H. PEEPLES Esq.; Mullaghmore, of R. BURGES Esq; and Ergennagh glebe-house, of the Rev. H. H. HARTE. The improvements made during the last 50 years are very extensive; the late Lord Mountjoy commenced planting the demesne of Rash, now called Mountjoy Forest in 1780 and much of the timber is large and very promising. The late Sir W. M’MAHON built a very handsome house, surrounded by extensive plantations, at Facary, and also laid out a town at Mountfield, where markets and fairs will be held. A new road has been opened through the parish, direct from Omagh to Belfast.
The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Derry and in the patronage of the Provost and Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin; the tithes amount to £1000. The church is a large and handsome edifice, in the Grecian style, with a lofty and beautiful octagonal spire; it was erected in Mountjoy Forest in 1768, at the sole expense of Dr. GIBSON, then rector. The glebe-house is being rebuilt upon an enlarged scale; the glebe consists of 57 acres, about ½ mile from the church and of 2 other portions containing 999 acres, making a total of 1572 acres, only 410 of which are under cultivation. There is a chapel of ease at Mountfield, 4 miles from the church; it is a small but very beautiful edifice, with a lofty spire, standing on the south side of a high mountain and was built at an expense of £1000 by the late Board of First Fruits in 1828; the living is a perpetual curacy, endowed with £25 per ann. from Primate BOULTER’s fund and in the gift of the Rector. Divine service is also performed, every 2nd Sunday, in the school- houses of Calkill, Carrigan, Castletown, Taercur and Mayne.
The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church and has 2 chapels, one at Knockmoyle, the other at Killyclogher. There are places of worship for Baptists and Presbyterians of the Synod of Ulster, the latter of the 3rd class. The male and female parochial schools are situated on the glebe and are supported by the rector, who has given the master a house and 3 acres of land. Mountfield male and female schools were supported by the late Sir W. M’MAHON; a school at Knockmoyle was founded under the will of John M’EVOY, who endowed it with £16 per annum, for the gratuitous education of the poor children in Mountjoy Forest and vested its management in the Rector forever. There are also schools at Carrigan, Taercur, Killynure, Common, Crevenagh and Lislap; 6 under the National Board at Castlerody, Killyclogher, Carrigan, Tetraconaght, Beltony and Rathcarsan and other schools at Edenderry, Calkill, and Drummullard. In these schools are about 770 boys and 450 girls and there are also 4 private schools, containing about 90 boys and 40 girls and 6 Sunday schools. The ruins of the old church are scarcely discernible but the cemetery is much used. There are several forts on Mary Gray mountain, close to each other.
A parish, in the barony of Dungannon containing, with the post-town of Aughnacloy, 7459 inhabitants. This place formed part of the manor of Portclare, a very extensive district granted to Sir Thomas RIDGEWAY in 1611, by Jas. I., by whose order a fortress called Lismore Bawn was erected here in 1619, of which there are extensive ruins. During the war in 1641 this parish was visited by the contending parties and the church was destroyed; some vestiges of it may still be traced in the ancient cemetery adjoining the village. The parish is situated on the river Blackwater, and on the mail coach road from Dublin to Londonderry including twelve townlands forming part of the district parish of Ballygawley, it comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 13,431¾ statute acres, of which 13,080 acres are applotted under the tithe act and 61 are water; the land is chiefly under an excellent system of cultivation and produces good crops. The northern side of the parish is mountainous and contains a tract of bog; and there are extensive quarries of limestone and freestone of very good quality.
The seats are Storm Hill, that of R. Montgomery MOORE Esq.; the Bawn of E. MOORE Esq.; Millview of S. SIMPSON Esq. And the glebe-house, the residence of the Rev. Archdeacon STOPFORD. The inhabitants, in addition to their agricultural pursuits, employ themselves at home in weaving linen and cotton. Fairs are held in the village on the first Wednesday in every month, chiefly for cattle and horses. By order of council under the provisions of an act of the 7th and 8th of Geo. IV., twelve townlands were separated from this parish, in 1830, to form part of the district parish of Ballygawley.
The living is a rectory and vicarage, in the diocese of Armagh, united by charter in 1637 to the rectory and vicarage of Aghaloo, together constituting the union of Carrenteel and corps of the archdeaconry of Armagh, in the patronage of the Lord-Primate. The tithes amount to £406. 3. 1., and of the union to £1015. 7. 8. It is recommended by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners to dissolve this union on the next avoidance and to make each parish a separate benefice. After the destruction of the church of Carrenteel, in 1641, a churchwas erected at Aghaloo, but it was taken down after the erection of the present church at Aughnacloy, which was built in 1736, at the sole expense of the late Acheson MOORE Esq. to which, in 1796, his daughter and heiress, Mrs. MALONE, added a tower surmounted by a lofty octagonal spire and to the repairs of which the Ecclesiastical Commissioners have recently granted £190. 18. The glebe-house, about half a mile from the church, was erected in 1790 and £2000 has been expended on its repair and improvement; the glebe comprises 1046 statute acres, valued at £969 per annum. The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church and is called Aughby; there are chapels at Aughnacloy, Caledon and Killin.
There are two meeting-houses for Presbyterians, one in connection with the Synod of Ulster, of the 2nd class and the other with the Seceding Synod and places of worship for Wesleyan and Primitive Methodists. The parochial male and female school is wholly supported by Archdeacon STOPFORD and there are 4 other schools; in these about 240 boys and 150 girls are instructed, and there are also a private school of 60 boys and 20 girls and 5 Sunday schools. At Garvey are the ruins of an extensive and elegant castle, erected by the late Col. MOORE which, very soon after its completion, was suffered to fall into decay; they are situated near those of Lismore Bawn. In this townland, which is about a mile from Aughnacloy, is a very valuable mineral spring; the water contains sulphur, nitre, magnesia, and steel held in solution with carbonic acid; it has been found efficacious in cutaneous diseases and in dyspeptic complaints; a large room has been erected over the spring and the water issues from a fountain of marble in the centre. Near it is a good house for the accommodation of persons frequenting the spa.
CASTLEDERG or DERG-BRIDGE
A market and post-town, in the parish of Skirts, barony of Omagh 8 miles (S.) from Strabane and 107¼ (N.) from Dublin; containing 575 inhabitants. The town is indebted for its origin to Sir John DAVIS, attorney-general for Ireland to Jas. I., to whom a grant of 2000 acres of land, then called Garertagh, was made in 1609, on which Sir John, prior to 1619, built a castle and established 16 British families, he also erected a stone bridge over the river Derg, adjoining the castle, which being the 1st built over that river, gave the town the name of Derg-Bridge, by which it is still frequently called. Sir John had another grant of land at Claraghmore, upon which he built a castle, called Kerlis and constructed a causeway, 7 miles long and 8 feet wide, in a straight line over mountains and through bogs, from one castle to the other. Several parts of this road are still traceable, but others have been broken up to make the road from this town to Drumquin. In the war of 1641, Sir Phelim O’NIAL besieged the castle of Derg and although he was driven away with disgrace and considerable loss of men, horses, and ammunition, yet he so greatly injured it that it was never afterwards repaired and remains a noble pile of ruins on the northern bank of the river. The bridge erected by Sir John DAVIS remained till 1835, when it was taken down and a handsome bridge of hewn stone, of 4 arches, has been erected.
The town, which is also called Castle-Derrick and Churchtown, is situated on the road from Newtown Stewart to Pettigo and on the new line of road from Londonderry to Enniskillen, between which places two coaches running daily pass through it. It consists of one principal and 2 smaller streets, containing 105 houses, many of which are large and well built and has much improved under the patronage of Sir R. A. FERGUSON Bart., its proprietor, who has lately built a very handsome inn. The market is on Friday and is large and well attended; a fair is held on the first Friday in every month. A constabulary police force has been stationed here; petty sessions are held on alternate Saturdays; a court for the manor of Hastings every 3rd Saturday, in which debts under 40s. are recoverable and a monthly court for the manor of Ardstraw, for debts to a similar amount. There was anciently a church in the town, which was in ruins in 1619, when it was rebuilt by Sir John DAVIS; but being destroyed by Sir Phelim O’NIAL in 1641, there was no church till 1731, when the present neat edifice was built by Hugh EDWARDS Esq. of Castle-Gore and was much improved in 1828. There is a national school for boys and girls, and a dispensary. Hugh EDWARDS Esq. in 1735, bequeathed an acre of land on which to build a school-house and £24 annually for the support of a master, to teach 8 poor boys but the school was not built; it is now, however, about to be erected and endowed. Not far from the town are the ruins of Castle-Gore, formerly the residence of the proprietors of the Manor Hastings estate. See Skirts
A village, in the parish of Urney, barony of Strabane, 3 miles (S. S. W.) from Strabane; containing 176 inhabitants. It is situated on the road from Londonderry to Sligo and on the river Finn, comprising one irregularly built street containing 44 houses, mostof which are old. Fairs for the sale of cattle, sheep, and pigs are held on Aug. 1st and Nov. 16th. Close to the village is a handsome bridge of 7 arches over the Finn, connecting Claudy with the county of Donegal. Prior to the erection of this bridge, there was an important ford here, which was contested with great slaughter by the partisans of William and James, in 1688 and at the time of the siege of Londonderry it was a strong post under Col. SKEFFINGTON, who was driven from it by the Duke of Berwick, a short time before Jas. II. Crossed the Finn at this place. See Urney
An incorporated market and post-town, a parish and the head of a diocese (formerly a parliamentary borough) in the barony of Clogher, 7 miles (W.) from Aughnacloy and 82½ (N. W. by N.) from Dublin; containing, with the towns of Augher and Five-mile-town and the village of Newtown-Saville (all separately described) 17,996 inhabitants, of which number, 523 are in the town. This place is said to have derived its name from a stone covered with gold, which in pagan times is reported to have made oracular responses. The Clogh-or, or “golden stone” was preserved long after the abolition of paganism; for M’GUIRE, canon of Armagh, who wrote a commentary on the registry of Clogher, in 1490, says “that this sacred stone is preserved at Clogher, on the right of the entrance into the church and that traces of the gold with which it had been formerly covered by the worshippers of the idol called Cermaed Celsetacht are still visible.” There is still a very ancient stone lying on the south side of the cathedral tower, which many believe to be the real Clogh-or. It appears to have some very ancient characters engraved on it, but is evidently nothing more than the shaft of an antique cross of rude workmanship, of which there are several in the ancient cemetery.
Clogher is called by Ptolemy ‘Rhigia or Regia’ and according to some authors, St. Patrick founded and presided over a monastery here, which he resigned to St. Kertenn when he went to Armagh, to establish his famous abbey there but according to others, it was built at the command of St. Patrick in the street before the royal palace of Ergal, by St. Macartin, who died in 506, and from its vicinity to this palace both the abbey and the town appear anciently to have been called Uriel or Ergal. In 841, the abbot Moran MacINRACHTY was slain by the Danes. In 1041 the church was rebuilt and dedicated to St. Macartin. In 1126 the Archdeacon Muireadhach O’CUILLEN was killed by the people of Fermanagh. Moelisa O’CARROL, Bishop of Clogher, in 1183, on his translation of the archbishoprick of Armagh, presented to this abbey a priest’s vestments and a mitre and promised a pastoral staff; he also consecrated the abbey church. Bishop Michael MacANTSAIR, in 1279, exchanged with the abbot the episcopal residence that had been built near the abbey by Bishop Donat O’FIDABRA, between 1218 and 1227, for a piece of land outside the town, called Disert-na-cusiac, on which he erected another episcopal palace. His immediate successor, Matthew MacCATASAID, erected a chapel over the sepulchre of St. Macartin. In 1861 the plague miserably afflicted Ireland, particularly the city of Clogher and caused the death of the bishop. In April 1395, while Bishop Arthur MacCAMAEIL was employed in rebuilding the chapel of St. Macartin, the abbey, the cathedral, 2 chapels, the episcopal residence and 32 other houses, were destroyed by fire; but the bishop applied himself with unwearied diligence to the rebuilding of his cathedral and palace. In 1504, another plague ravaged Clogher and caused the death of the bishop. Jas. I., in 1610, annexed the abbey and its revenues to the see of Clogher, by which it was made one of the richest in the kingdom. Between 1690 and 1697, Bishop TENNISON repaired and beautified the episcopal palace and his successor, Bishop St. George ASH, expended £900 in repairing and improving the palace and lands, two-thirds of which was repaid by his successor. Bishop STERNE, in 1720, laid out £3000 in building and other improvements of the episcopal residence, £2000 of which was charged on the revenues of the see.
The town is situated on the river Blackwater, the source of which is in the parish and consists of one row of 90 houses, the northern side only being built upon. Some of the houses are large, handsome and well built with hewn stone and slated. The episcopal palace is a large and handsome edifice close to the cathedral, on the south side of the town and consists of a centre with two wings: the entrance is in the north front by an enclosed portico, supported by lofty fluted columns. It is built throughout of hewn freestone and standing on elevated ground commands extensive views over a richly planted undulating country. Its erection was commenced by Lord John George BERESFORD, Primate of Armagh, while Bishop of Clogher and completed by Lord Robert TOTTENHAM, the present bishop, in 1823. Attached to the palace is a large and well-planted demesne of 566 acres, encircled by a stone wall and within it are the remains of the royal dwelling-place of the princes of Ergallia, a lofty earthwork or fortress, protected on the west and south by a deep fosse, beyond this, to the south, is a camp surrounded by a single fosse and still further southward is a tumulus or cairn, encircled by a raised earthwork.
The market is on Saturday; the market-house was built by Bishop GARNETT. Fairs for live stock are held on the 3rd Saturday in every month. The market was granted to the bishop by letters patent dated April 20th 1629 : he was also authorised to appoint 2 fairs and receive the profits of the market and fairs. The old fairs, which are supposed to have been granted by the charter, are held on May 6th and July 26th. At the solicitation of Bishop SPOTTISWOOD, Chas. I., in 1629, directed that, “for the better civilizing and strengthening of these remote parts with English and British tenants and for the better propagation of the true religion, the lord-lieutenant should by letters patent make the town of Clogher a corporation.” This was to consist of a portreeve and 12 burgesses, to be at first nominated by the bishop, the portreeve was after-wards to be elected on Michaelmas-day, by and from among the burgesses. No freemen were created and the bishops appear to have connected a burgess-ship with each of the stalls in the cathedral. Prior to March 29th 1800, the bishops had nominated the members of parliament for the borough without opposition and the seneschal of their manor had been the returning officer but at that time the Irish House of Commons resolved that the limits of the borough were co-extensive with the manor and as the freeholders of the manor had tendered their votes in favour of 2 candidates, they were declared by the Irish parliament to be duly elected and the bishop’s nominees were unseated.
At the Union, the £15,000 granted as compensation for abolishing the elective franchise was claimed by the bishop, the dean and chapter, and prebendaries of the cathedral and the Rev. Hugh NEVAN, seneschal of the manor, but their claim was disallowed and the money paid to the Board of First Fruits. By the charter a grant was to be made to the corporation by the bishop of 700 Irish acres near the town, for which a rent of 8d. per acre was to be paid. Out of the profits of 200 acres of this land the corporation was, within 2 years, to erect a school-house and maintain a school-master, with a servant, for a grammar school. English was to be taught by the master, who was always to be appointed by the bishop. The portreeve was to have 200 acres of the grant assigned for his support while holding the office and for the payment of a steward and serjeant or bailiff and the profits of the remaining 300 acres were to be divided among the burgesses. This grant appears not to have been made. The charter granted a civil court of record to the corporation, with a jurisdiction extending to a circle of three miles in every direction round the cathedral and to the amount of £5 English, with a prison for debtors. Since the death of the last seneschal, about 1823, this court has not been held. Quarter sessions are held here twice a year in the sessions house, alternately with Dungannon, for the baronies of Dungannon and Clogher and there is a bridewell.
The parish is of great extent and comprehends the manors of Augher, in which is the town of that name; Clogher (granted by Chas. I. to the bishop), in which is the town of Clogher; Blessingburne, in which is the town of Five-mile-Town; Mount-Stewart and part of the manor of Killyfaddy, granted to Sir Wm. COPE and the rest of which is in the adjoining parish of Donagheavy: there are 8 townlands of the manor of Clogher, called abbey lands, which are tithe-free. It contains 49,761 statute acres, according to the Ordnance survey, of which 30,000 are good arable and pasture land, 213¼ are water and 19,761 are waste heath and bog, the greater part of which is, however, highly improvable; of its entire surface, 43,754 acres are applotted under the tithe act. The land in the vicinity of the town is remarkably fertile and well cultivated, freestone and limestone are abundant and there are indications of coal and lead ore. Clogher is situated on a lofty eminence, in the midst of a rich and diversified country encircled by mountains, which on the south approach within one mile and on the north within two miles of the town and the highest of which is Knockmany. Slieve Beagh, on the southern border of the parish, rises to an elevation of 1254 feet above the level of the sea. Besides the episcopal palace, the parish contains several fine residences. The deanery or glebe-house, which is about a quarter of a mile west of the cathedral, is a handsome house in a fertile and well-planted glebe. Not far distant from it is Augher Castle, the splendid residence of Sir J. M. Richardson BUNBURY Bart.; Cecil, the seat of the Rev. Francis GERVAIS; Corick, of the Rev. Dr. STORY; Killyfaddy, of R. W. MAXWELL Esq.; Blessingburne Cottage of Col. MONTGOMERY, Daisy-hill, of A. MILLAR Esq.; Fardross, the ancient seat of A. Upton GLEDSTANES Esq.; Ballimagowan, of A. NEWTON Esq.; Waring Bank, of J. M’LANNAHAN Esq.; and Corcreevy House, of Lieut.-Col. DICKSON.
The living is a rectory and vicarage, in the diocese of Clogher, constituting the corps of the deanery of Clogher, in the patronage of the Crown, the tithes amount to £850 and the income of the dean, including tithes and glebe, is £1374.17.3. The cathedral, which is dedicated to St. Macartin and from time immemorial has been used as the parish church, was built in the ancient style of English architecture by Bishop STERNE, in 1744, at his own expense, but was remodelled in the Grecian style by Dean BAGWELL, in 1818, who erected stalls for the dignitaries and a gallery for the organist and choir, also galleries in the 2 transepts and about the same time the whole was newly roofed and ceiled. The Ecclesiastical Commissioners have recently made a grant of £197 for repairs. It is a large and handsome cruciform structure, with a lofty square tower rising from the west front, in which is the principal entrance; the throne, which is very beautiful, occupies the western angle of the south transept and the whole of the interior is handsomely fitted up. There are several elegant monuments, among which are Bishop GARNETT’s, who died in the year 1783 and Bishop PORTER’s, who died in 1819. The chapter-house is near the entrance, on the right.
There are 2 chapels of ease in the parish, one at Five-mile-Town or Blessingburne and one at Newtown-Saville, and divine service is regularly performed every Sunday in the market-house at Augher, in several of the school-houses in distant parts of the parish and also at Lislie during the summer. The glebe-house, or deanery, is about a quarter of a mile from the cathedral. The glebe comprises 556a. 1 r. 24p. statute measure, of which 100a. 1r. 28p. are annexed to the deanery and 455a. 3r. 36p. are leased, at a rent of £337. 15. 64. and renewal fines amounting to £20. 7. per annum. The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church and there are chapels at Aghadrummond, Escragh and Aghentine; there are also places of worship for Presbyterians at Longridge and Aghentine. The free school in the town is under the patronage of the Bishop; the master’s salary is derived from the proceeds of a bequest of £420 by Bishop GARNETT, which the existing bishop augments to £40 per annum. The school-house was built in 1780, by Bishop GARNETT at an expense of £300. At Beltany there is a male and female school, on Erasmus Smith’s foundation, endowed with 2 acres of land by the Rev. F. GERVAIS, who, in conjunction with the trustees of that charity, built the school-house, at an expense of £658. 19. 6. There are a female school at Cecil, built and supported by Mrs. GERVAIS and schools for both sexes at Escragh, supported by Capt. MAXWELL at Five-mile-Town, supported by Col. MONTGOMERY and at Ballyscally, supported by J. TRIMBLE Esq. all under the National Board; there are also 4 other schools. In these schools are about 490 boys and 330 girls and there are 17 private schools, in which are about 540 boys and 350 girls and 13 Sunday schools. A dispensary is maintained in the customary manner. At Lumford Glen is a deep ravine, in which a small stream of water flows through a cleft in the rock and forms a beautiful cascade. A carriage drive, edged with fine plantations, has been made to this waterfall. (Population of Clogher Town in 1861, 389)
CLOGHERNY or CLOUGHENRY
A parish, in the barony of Omagh, 6 miles (S. E.) from Omagh; containing 785 inhabitants. This parish, anciently Donaghaneigh, is situated on the road from Dungannon to Omagh and contains according to the Ordnance survey, 17,791½ statute acres (including a detached portion of 2368½ acres) about 8000 of which are arable, mostly under a good system of cultivation. There is a market at Beregh on Wednesday and a fair on the 1st Monday in every month and fairs are also held at Seskinore, on the 2nd Monday in every month, for live stock. The principal seats are Gortmore, the residence of J. GALBRAITHE Esq.; Mullaghmore of R. BURGES Esq.; Seskinore of Mrs. PERRY and Somerset of the Rev. J. LOWRY.
The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Armagh and in the patronage of the Provost and Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin, who purchased the advowson in 1830, the tithes amount to £692. The church is a large and handsome edifice, built about 1746 and enlarged and much improved in 1773. The glebe-house was built in 1774, about which time the parish was disunited from Termon: it is large and handsome and is on a glebe of 154 acres; there is also a glebe at Upper Clogherny, comprising 422 acres and another called Mullaghollin, in the parish of Termon, comprising 508 acres, making a total of 1084 acres of arable land, besides about 850 acres of mountain and bog. The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church and is called Beregh; there are chapels at Beregh, Liskmore, and Brackey. At Dervethroy is a meeting-house for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster, of the 3rd class and at Seskinore is one in connection with the Associate Synod. The parochial school, situated near the church, is a large and handsome edifice, built by the inhabitants, at a cost of £800, and is supported by the rector and there are 11 other schools in the parish, also 4 Sunday schools. About a mile from the church are the ruins of the old church of Donaghaneigh, in a large townland, which is extra-parochial and belongs to the Bishop of Clogher.
A parish, partly in the barony of Armagh and partly in that of O’Neilland West county of Armagh but chiefly in the barony of Dungannon, 5½ miles (N. N. W.) from Armagh; containing, with the districts of Derrygortrevy, Moy, and Blackwatertown (each of which is separately described) 19,547 inhabitants. This place was distinguished at a very remote period as the seat of a religious establishment of great reputation, of which St. Lugud or Lugaid, was abbot about the year 580. It was soon after vested in the Culdean monks, whose chief establishment in Ireland was at Armagh, and with it this house became united about the middle of the 10th century. The Culdees kept possession of the church and several large tracts of land in the parish, till the Reformation when the whole became forfeited to the Crown and were granted by Jas. I., on the 13th of May, 1614, to Primate HAMPTON and his successors for ever, under the denomination of the “Termon, or Erenach lands of Clonfeicle” together with the church and rectory, which latter has since passed from the Primate and is now vested in the Provost and Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin. During the Irish wars and more especially in the rebellion of the Earl of Tyrone, this district was the scene of numerous sanguinary battles, the details of which are given in the article on Benburb.
The parish is intersected by the river Blackwater, over which are several large and handsome stone bridges and comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, 26,218 statute acres, of which 21,582 are in Tyrone and 4636 in Armagh. The surface is diversified by several small and beautiful lakes, the principal of which is Lough Curran, on an artificial island in which have been discovered the remains of buildings and warlike and domestic implements and near it is the old camp of the O’NIAL’s, now Fort Magarrett. The land is chiefly arable; the soil is light but generally fertile, producing excellent crops; the system of agriculture is improved and there is no waste land, except a tract of bog or marsh, about 400 acres in extent. Limestone and freestone abound in the parishl there are extensive and valuable limestone quarries at Benburb. The Ulster canal passes for 3 miles through the parish, on the Armagh or eastern side of the Blackwater. At Benburb a rock has been excavated to the depth of 86 feet and the canal carried longitudinally over a mill-race for a very considerable distance, by a handsome aqueduct. The scenery is pleasingly diversified and beautifully picturesque; the glen through which the Blackwater flows is highly romantic and the canal, when completed, will add to the interest of the landscape.
The principal seats are Dartrey Lodge, the residence of W. OLPHERTS Esq.; the Argory of W. McGeough BOND Esq. and Tullydoey, of J. Eyre JACKSON Esq. at which place is also the residence of T. EYRE Esq. The weaving of linen is carried on extensively by the farmers and cottiers at their own dwellings and at Tullydoey is an extensive bleach-green. The living is a rectory and vicarage, in the diocese of Armagh and in the patronage of the Provost and Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin, the tithes amount to £1030. The glebe-house is a good building, the glebe comprises 532a. 3r. 17p. of good arable land. The church was destroyed during the rebellion of Tyrone, since which time, the village of Clonfeacle has been neglected and now forms part of Blackwater-town and in the same rebellion, the church of Eglish was destroyed and that parish has ever since been included in the parish of Clonfeacle. The present parish church is situated close to the village of Benburb, on the confines of the counties of Armagh and Tyrone, was built by Sir R. WINGFIELD in 1619 and repaired and enlarged in 1815, by a gift of £800 from the late Board of First Fruits; the Ecclesiastical Commissioners have recently granted £526. 11. towards its further repair. There are also a church at Moy and one at Derrygortrevy; the latter stands near the site of the old church of Eglish. In the R. C. divisions the parish is called Upper and Lower Clonfeacle and includes the whole parish of Eglish; there are chapels at Eglish, Moy, and Blackwater-town. There is a place of worship at Benburb for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster of the 2nd class and one at Crew in connection with the Associate Synod and at Blackwatertown is a place of worship for Wesleyan Methodists. The parochial school, near the church at Benburb, was built in 1832, by the Rev. Henry GRIFFIN, the present rector, by whom it is principally supported; there are also schools at Blackwater-town and Derrycrevy and near the old churchyard at Clonfeacle is a national school. At Benburb, Gorestown, Drummond, Mullycarnan, and Carrowcolman, schools were built and are supported by funds arising from a bequest, by Lord POWERSCOURT, of £2000 for charitable uses, and are conducted under the moral agency system. The sum of £4 per annum is paid to the poor of this parish from Drelincourt’s charity, and 2 children are eligible to the Drelincourt school at Armagh. A bequest of £100 was made to the poor by a person whose name is now unknown.
The ruins of Benburb castle, situated on the summit of a limestone rock overhanging the river, have a very picturesque appearance and near them was found a silver signet ring, bearing the arms and initials of Turiogh O’NIAL, which is now in the possession of Mr. BELL of Dungannon. Several interesting relics of antiquity have been found in various parts; a large well-formed canoe was found in the bed of the river at Blackwater-town in 1826 and is now in the garden of C. MAGEE Esq.; it is scooped out of an oak tree and is in good preservation. The same gentleman has also some very perfect querns, an altar of rude construction, several stone hatchets and the horns of an elk, which were found a few years since at Drumlee. At Tullydoey are some inconsiderable vestiges of an ancient fort.
A parish in the barony of Dungannon, 2 miles (S. by E.) from Stewartstown, on the road to Lurgan, containing 5555 inhabitants and comprising, according to the Ordnance survey, 19,070¾ statute acres, of which 29½ are part of the Blackwater, and 2940¾ are part of Lough Neagh (called Washing bay), by which the parish is bounded on the east. A large tract of marshy ground and bog extends from the shore of the lough to the Blackwater and the remainder is good arable and pasture land. Near the north-western extremity of the parish are the extensive ruins of Mountjoy castle, built by the Earl of Mountjoy, when lord-deputy of Ireland, in 1601, to check the Earl of Tyrone. This castle, which was built of brick made on the spot, is situated on a gentle eminence close to the shore of the lake and was thought of so much importance on the plantation of Ulster, that Jas. I. made this place a corporate borough and granted 300 acres of land for its support and 300 acres more to maintain a garrison. In the war of 1641 it was taken by Turlogh O’NIAL, who kept possession of it till his total defeat by Gen. MONROE in 1643; it was dismantled by order of parliament in 1648, since which time it has been in ruins. The Earl of Tyrone built a strong castle on the shore of Lough Neagh, towards the close of the 16th century and called it Fuith-na-gael, or the “Abomination of the Stranger” but it was soon after taken by the English, and no traces of it remain.
The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Armagh and in the patronage of the Provost and Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin; the tithes amount to £461.10.94. The glebe-house was built by aid of a gift of £200 and a loan of £550 from the late Board of First Fruits; the glebe comprises 78 acres. The church is a small ancient edifice; it was repaired in 1699 and the Ecclesiastical Commissioners have recently granted £197. 6. for its further repair. The R. C. parish is co-extensive with that of the Established Church; there are 2 chapels, one at Clonoe and one at Mountjoy; the latter was built in 1835. The parochial school is aided by the rector; a manor school is supported by A. ANNESLEY Esq. Lord of the manor, at whose expense a large and handsome school-house was erected; there is also a school at Aughamullan. In these schools are about 170 children and there is a pay school, in which are about 70 children. The late Dr. E. SILL bequeathed his estate, called Barn Hill, at Stewartstown, together with all his real and personal property, to build and support an hospital in this parish, at Washing bay, near the influx of a stream called the “Holy River” into Lough Neagh; the funded property exceeded £3000 and the lands produce more than £100 per annum, but no hospital has yet been built.
A village, in that part of the parish of Tamlaght which is in the barony of Dungannon, 3 miles (S. by E.) from Moneymore containing 393 inhabitants. This place formed part of the estate granted to the Hon. Andrew STEWART by Jas. I., in 1612 and confirmed by Chas. I. in 1630. A battle took place here at the ford of the river in 1641, when the chapel of Tamlaght was destroyed by the parliamentarians and in 1688, Jas. II. crossed the river at this place on his march to the siege of Derry. The village, which in 1831 consisted of 76 well-built houses, is pleasantly situated on the road from Magherafelt to Stewartstown, in a fertile vale, about 2 miles from Lough Neagh and on the river Coagh or Ballinderry, over which is an ancient narrow bridge of stone of 6 arches. It is the property o William Lenox CONYNGHAM Esq., in whose family the estate has remained since the year 1663 and was erected about the year 1728, by George CONYNGHAM Esq., who obtained for it a charter for a market and 4 fairs, which have been changed to a market held on the 1st Friday in every month, for the sale of linens and provisions and to 12 fairs held on the 2nd Friday in every month, for horses, cattle and agricultural produce. The market-house, a spacious and commodious building, was erected in 1828, by the present proprietor, who also built a good school-house and supports a school for male and female children. The linen market is very considerable and the fairs, which are toll-free, are numerously attended. It is a constabulary police station and has a penny post to Moneymore. There is a place of worship for Presbyterians in connection with the Synod of Ulster. See Tamlaght
A post-town, partly in the parishes of Donoghenry and Clonoe, but chiefly in that of Tullyniskan, barony of Dungannon, 3 miles (N.E.) from Dungannon and the population is returned with the respective parishes. This flourishing trading village is situated in the centre of the Tyrone coal field, on the roads from Dungannon to Ballinderry and from Lurgan to Stewartstown: it comprises 184 houses, which are generally well built with stone and covered with slate and has a sub-post-office to Dungannon. The coal district extends from Mullaghmoyle, on the north, to Dungannon on the south, a distance of 6 miles, with an average breadth of two. Great difficulty is found in working it, owing to the softness of the bed on which it rests and the dangerous state of the roof, unless expensively propped. At present the mining operations are confined to Drumglass, in the neighbourhood of Dungannon and the vicinity of Coal Island; the collieries at the latter place are on a small scale and principally worked by manual labour but are moderately profitable.
Coal Island originated in the formation of the Tyrone canal, which was begun by Government in 1744 and was intended to intersect the entire coal-field of Tyrone but was not carried beyond this place. The canal is not more than 3 miles in length from the river Blackwater, which it joins near Lough Neagh, to Coal Island, but it has been commenced and partially completed in several places westward; bridges have been erected over the line; an aqueduct of 3 large arches was to have conveyed it over the Terren; and a rail-road was to have connected it with some of the minor collieries, for which purpose a viaduct, here called “the Dry Hurry,” was thrown over the Cookstown road, 2 miles from Dungannon. All these edifices are of hewn freestone, handsomely finished and in good preservation; but in many places the canal is filled up and cultivated, so that in a few years the line will not be traceable. This is now a place of considerable trade and has 35 large lighters, or barges, which frequently make coasting voyages to Dublin and sometimes across the channel to Scotland. Extensive iron works, forges and plating-mills were erected here in 1831, and there are others at Oghran and New Mills for the manufacture of spades, edge-tools, &c.
Here is also an extensive establishment for the manufacture of fire-bricks and crucibles, commenced in 1834 by two gentlemen from Stourbridge, in Worcestershire. Most of the manufactured articles are sent to London or Liverpool. Near this is a pottery and there is also a flour-mill, where 2000 tons of wheat are annually ground for the Belfast market. Bleach-greens have been established at Derryvale, Terren Hill and New Mills, where 20,000 pieces of linen are annually finished for the English market. Several warehouses, granaries, yards and other conveniences for carrying on an extensive trade are placed round a small but convenient basin, and in the village and its vicinity are the residences of several wealthy merchants. The exports are coal, spades, shovels, fire-bricks, fire-clay, crucibles, earthen ware, linen cloth, wheat, oats, flour, &c.; the imports are timber, deals, iron, salt, slates, glass, &c. The village being in 3 parishes, has three churches within 2 miles of it and a district church is about to be erected for its use. The R. C. chapel for the parish of Donoghenry is not far distant.
A market and post-town, in that part of the parish of Derryloran which is in the barony of Dungannon, 20 miles (E. N. E.) from Omagh and 86½ (N. N.W.) from Dublin, by the mail road, but only 79 by the direct road; containing 2883 inhabitants. This place derives its name from its founder, Allan COOK, who had a lease for years renewable under the see of Armagh, upon whose land the old town was built, about the year 1609. It is situated on the mail coach road from Dungannon to Coleraine and consists of one wide street more than a mile and a quarter long, with another street intersecting it at right angles, containing 570 houses, many of which are large, well built with stone and slated. The present town was built about the year 1750, by Mr. STEWART, its then proprietor and is advantageously situated in a fine and fertile district, which is well wooded and watered and abundantly supplied with limestone. A patent for a market and fairs was granted to Allan COOK, Aug. 3rd 1628. The market is on Tuesday for grain and on Saturday for linen cloth, flax, yarn, cattle, pigs, and provisions. Fairs are held on the 1st Saturday in every month, for general farming stock. The market-place consists chiefly of merchants stores and shops. At Greenvale is a large establishment for bleaching, dyeing and finishing linens for the English markets; there are others at Wellbrook and at Ardtrea, besides 2 large ones at Tullylaggan. A constabulary police force has been stationed in the town. A manorial court for the primate’s manor of Ardtrea is held here once a month, for the recovery of debts under £5: its jurisdiction extends into the parishes of Lissan, Derryloran, Kildress, Desertcreight, Arboe, Ardtrea, Clonoe, Ballyclog, Tamlaght, Ballinderry, and Donoghenry. Petty sessions are held on alternate Fridays. Close adjoining the town is Killymoon, the residence of W. STEWART Esq. proprietor of the town and of the land immediately adjacent; it was built from a design by Mr. NASH, in the pure Saxon style, and is situated in an extensive demesne, containing some uncommonly fine timber. Not far distant are Loughry, the residence of J. LINDESAY Esq. and Lissan, the seat of Sir T. STAPLES Bart. The former is in a demesne of about 200 acres, finely wooded and watered by the river Loughry; the estate was granted, in 1604, by Jas. I. to Sir Robert LYNDESAY, his chief harbinger and has ever since been the residence of the senior branch of that ancient family, which is among the claimants of the earldom of CRAUFURD and LYNDESAY. The other seats in the vicinity are Oaklands, the residence of Capt. RICHARDSON; the glebe-house, of the Rev. C. BARDIN D. D. and Greenvale, of T. ADAIR Esq.; besides several other handsome houses in and near the town.
The parish church of Derryloran, in the southern part of the town, is a large and handsome cruciform edifice, built of hewn freestone from a design by Mr. NASH, in the early English style of architecture: it has a tower and lofty octagonal spire and the interior is fitted up in the Saxon style. Near the centre of the town is a large and handsome Presbyterian meeting-house, in connection with the Synod of Ulster and also one in connection with the Associate Synod, each of which is of the 1st class and has a manse for the clergyman. A second meeting-house in connection with the Synod of Ulster was built in 1835 and there are places of worship for Wesleyan and Primitive Methodists and, at a short distance from the town, a large R. C. chapel. An infants school was established in 1834, by Mrs. HASSARD and other ladies, for which a house is now being built and a parochial school-house is also being erected, on land given by Mr.STEWART; near the town are several other schools. Here are also a news-room and a dispensary. Close to the town are the ruins of the old church of Derryloran and not far distant are 2 large forts, one circular, the other square. In Killymoon demesne are the ruins of an old meeting-house, at Drumcraw is the site of a church, and at Loughry a fine cromlech. * (Population in 1861, 3,257)
*Cromlech = A prehistoric monument consisting of a group of megaliths, sometimes arranged in a circle or in concentric circles from the Free Dictionary https://www.thefreedictionary.com/