Twiss leads way for Pardon for Poff and Barrett

On Thursday 16th December 2021, formal application was submitted to the Department of Justice in St Stephen’s Green, Dublin, for the Presidential Pardon of Sylvester Poff and James Barrett.  As with the recent Posthumous Pardon of John Twiss, application was made to the Department by Castleisland District Heritage, formerly the Michael O’Donohoe Memorial Heritage Project,…Continue Reading

Purcell’s Castle: An Earlier Chapter in the Unending Tale of the Colleen Bawn

A copy of The Colleen Bawn (2018) by Patrick T Fitzgerald has been added to the archive of Castleisland District Heritage.  It synthesises over two hundred years of research and literature relating to the mysterious and tragic tale of Ellen Hanly, better known as ‘The Colleen Bawn.’[1]   In 1819, a badly decomposed corpse bound…Continue Reading

Unholy Christmas! The Tale of the Priest and the Presbyterian

My Irish-preaching was very successful at first, but greatly opposed afterwards   In 1863, Rev Henry MacManus, the first Irish Missionary of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, published Sketches of the Irish Highlands.[1]  He discoursed on the development of spreading the gospel in the Irish tongue in pre-famine Ireland:   Preaching…Continue Reading

Parknageragh: A Tale of Two Houses

Parknageragh House, Castleisland, dates to pre-Famine times.  It was built by the Thompson family.[1]  Early records show that in 1823, one Alexander Thompson Esq of Parknageragh was summoned to the jury panel.  In May 1828, Mrs Thompson, wife of Mr William Thompson, a lady ‘much esteemed,’ died at Parknageragh after ‘a lingering illness.’   On…Continue Reading

An Overview of the McMorran Collection

Castleisland District Heritage has recently acquired a selection of papers from the collection of the late historian, Russell McMorran, courtesy his brothers, Chris and Clare McMorran.  The material, which has been added to the Castleisland District Heritage archive, includes photographs, journals, Financial Reports of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland (1957) and a copy of the…Continue Reading

A Tale of Two Fountains

A mid-nineteenth century altercation between two civil engineers casts an historic light on one of Castleisland’s famous landmarks.  In the Famine year of 1846, the construction of two fountains – one in Tralee and one in Castleisland – to supply a ‘sufficient and unfailing supply of water to the poorer classes of townsfolk’ was being…Continue Reading

In Praise of Presentation Convent Castleisland, 175 Years on

In October 1843, during a Repeal Banquet at the Rotunda, Daniel O’Connell spoke about ‘the growing spirit of religious observances, moral conduct, and practical piety’ that was distributing itself ‘throughout the land’:   I see it in the youthful females of Ireland, educated under the sacred care of the religious ladies who in every town…Continue Reading

Tullig House, Castleisland: ‘The Small Mansion’

Tullig, a townland a few miles outside Castleisland, was part of the extensive Herbert estate.[1] The building of Tullig House in 1750 is attributed to the landlord’s agents, the Saunders family.  In 1786, Tullig was the seat of ‘Mr Sandes.’  Thomas Saunders was in residence in 1814.[2]   The genealogy of the Tullig branch of…Continue Reading

A Note on the Seigniory of Tarbert

From Laois to Kerry (2016) is Michael Christopher Keane’s study of Patrick Crosbie’s early 17th century plan to transplant seven Septs, namely the Moores, Kellys, Dowlings, Lawlors, Dorans, Dees and McEvoys, into North Kerry:   In 1607, Patrick Crosbie persuaded the government to agree to a remarkable proposal that he be granted the 4,000 acre…Continue Reading