Shronell

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Shronell, Shrone Hill, or Shronel is a townland near the villages of Lattin and Emly. It is situated 3 miles South West of Tipperary, Ireland on the R515 regional road.

Origin of name[edit]

The word "Shronell" is an English version of the Gaelic placename "Srónaill" (Srón=nose / aill=cliff), therefore Shronell means "nose shaped cliff".[1] It is called this probably due to a steep hill ledge north of the cemetery. Shronell is historically divided into Shronellbeg (from the Irish beag, meaning small) and Shronellmór (mór, meaning big). These divisions can be seen on ordnance survey maps.

History[edit]

Joseph Damer, (1630–1720), an officer in Oliver Cromwell's New Model Army was granted lands in Shronell in 1662.[2] There were concerted efforts made by the Damer family to introduce Protestant workers from the northern counties, and by 1766 there were eighty-two Protestant families in Shronell.[3] In 1837, the parish, (sometimes spelled Shronehill) in the barony of Clanwilliam, contained a total of 1006 inhabitants and encompassed the townlands of Ballinglanna, Ballycohy, Ballyconry, Barronstown (Ormond), Shronell Beg and Shronell More. It consisted of 2,747 statute acres (1,113 hectares), some of which was cultivated but mostly in pasture. 'Ballinard' was the residence of W. Chadwick.. Other notable residents were Clement Sadler, 'Damerville', Austin Cooper 'Chadwickand' and Rev. M. Clarkethe of the glebe house. The Protestant Parish was in the diocese of Cashel.[4]

Geography[edit]

The area encompasses fertile pasture land (used almost exclusively for dairy farming). The Galtee Mountains are visible from most of the area. The townland is in the parish of Lattin/Cullen and the school's Gaelic Athletic Association and religious affiliations are concentrated in Lattin. The townland itself contains no retail shops or commercial outlets, the nearest shop being in Tipperary Town.

Buildings[edit]

The area comprises a mixture of large and small modern houses, along with some old 19th century buildings that date from famine times.[citation needed] The Protestant church was built about 1808, and the tower added in 1818. There was a school-house, though not in use, partly built by Caroline Damer, who also endowed it with an acre of land. The recklessly extravagant Damer's Court was built in the mid 18th century by John Damer behind the present National School and its ruins can still be seen today.

Folklore[edit]

There are many local tales about Damer, both fact and fiction, but all contribute to the persona of the man who once held these lands.

In one of these tales, it is said that the local Filioch (poet), Liam “Dall” O Heifernann wrote in one of his poems, that the Damer family would never survive in the area surrounding Shronel but that the O Heifernann (Heffernan) clan would. To this day there are Heffernan’s in the surrounding area but no Damer descendant remain.

It was also alleged that there was a secret tunnel built from his home in Mount Bruis to the site of his new house in Shronel but the Shronel residence was never finished. It is said locally that it was destroyed by those angry at Damer’s misery at being surrounded by the poor of West Tipperary.[5] What remained of the family fortune passed to Lady Caroline Damer, his daughter and sole heir, and later to the Earl of Portarlington. The mansion, which was a large and magnificent building, was demolished in 1776,[6] and by the mid 19th century, little remained but the offices, which were by then in a state of dilapidation.[7]

Sources[edit]

  • Griffiths Valuation of Ireland – Shronell, County Tipperary
  • Shronell National School
  • From Tipperary to Taranaki: A Family History of the Bourke Families of South Taranaki: John Bourke of Shronell, Tipperary. 2005 ISBN 978-0-473-10601-0
  • Denis G. Marnane (1985) A History of West Tipperary from 1660 – Land and Violence
  • William Nolan & Thomas G. McGrath (1985) Tipperary History & Society
  • Arthur Young (1780) A tour in Ireland
  • Patrick Heffernan M.D. (1940) The Heffernans and their Times
  • William Hayes & Art Kavanagh (2003) The Tipperary Gentry Vol.1 pp79-87

References[edit]

  1. ^ Anon. (1914). The Chadwicks of Guelph and Toronto and their cousins". Toronto: Davis & Henderson. pp. p48. 
  2. ^ O'Sullivan, Sean; Richard Mercer Dorson (1999). Folktales of Ireland. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 978-0-226-63998-7. 
  3. ^ Power, Thomas P. (1993). Land, politics, and society in eighteenth-century Tipperary. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-820316-2. 
  4. ^ "Shronell". rootsWeb. Retrieved 14 June 2009. 
  5. ^ Colt Hoare, Richard (1807). Journal of a tour in Ireland, A.D. 1806. W. Miller. 
  6. ^ Heffernan, Patrick (1940). The Heffernans and their times: a study in Irish history. J. Clarke & Co., Ltd. 
  7. ^ "Shronell". rootsWeb. Retrieved 14 June 2009.