Drumconrath

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Drumconrath or Drumcondra (historically Drumconra, from Irish: Droim Conrach, meaning "ridge of Conrach")[1] is a small historic village situated in north County Meath, Ireland. The parish borders County Louth and is also close to the borders of Counties Monaghan and Cavan.

The parish has a population of 2,967 while the village itself has 420 people. The area of the parish is 7,566 acres (30.62 km2).[1].

There has been a settlement here since before 200BC evident through the ancient pathways and ringforts at Corstown and Drumsilagh. The battle of Ballyhoe (1539AD) between the O'Neills and the English,[2] took place nearby of which folklore says that a treasure was thrown into the lake during the battle and when a true Irish Gael on a white horse comes he will swoop into the lake and take it.

It was literally "Beyond the Pale" being the first Gaelic Settlement you meet leaving the Pale from Ardee. It was a hostile place for the English who left the safety of the Pale and frequent battles took place in the village.

The remains of a monastery on Church Hill destroyed because of Henry VIII's Dissolution of the Monastery Act, overlook Lough Braken lake. Here,views of the Mourne Mountains in one direction and the Dublin Mountains in the other can been seen quite clearly.

During the 1798 rebellion, five parishioners were killed by the Louth Miltia for refusing to allow them entry to the Church in the village. The area had strong Ribbonmen support (a forerunner to the Irish Republican Army) and six men from the area were hung for their part in the infamous burning of the Wildgoose Lodge Murders nearby.[3] The village kept its Republican ideals and many of the local men fought in the Tan War and the Civil War with nearby Kingscourt Brigade, the families of the Hickeys, Keenans featuring prominently. In fact, it is recorded that this Brigade fired the last shot of the Tan War at 11:20 on 11 June 1921, twenty minutes after the truce.[4]

Set in forested drumlin countryside and surrounded by small lakes, it is a long-established angling centre with many picturesque walking areas. Lough Bracken and the smaller lakes of Corstown and Balrath, and the River Dee are situated in this area.

The village offers many services including a GP, a post office, beauty salon, pharmacy, butchers, primary school, a grocery store and a B&B within an old store. There are 2 housing estates bordering the village, De Valera Park on the Road to Nobber and Hillside View on the road to Carrickmacross. The former was built in the early 1970s and the latter during the boom era. Night life in the village centres on 3 pubs in the village, The Thatch, Fay's and Muldoon's. There is a large community centre in the village where bingo and other activities are regularly attended, including a large pitch & putt course to the rear.

There are two churches in the village. Saint Peter's ( Church of Ireland ) now closed and Saint Peter & Paul's Catholic Church. There are some burial graves surrounding Saint Peter's Church which are mostly abandoned and overgrown but the village has two other cemeteries on the Ardee road, one Catholic and one Protestant.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Placenames Database of Ireland (see archival records)
  2. ^ reepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~callahan/part3.htm
  3. ^ http://www.fourcourtspress.ie/product.php?intProductID=772
  4. ^ The Royal Irish Constabulary and the Black and Tans in County Louth 1919-1922 / Stephen O'Donnell

Coordinates: 53°51′N 6°39′W / 53.850°N 6.650°W / 53.850; -6.650