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INISHCALTRA

In 1868, the parish of Inishcaltra contained the following places:

"INNISCALTHRA, a parish, partly in the barony of TULLA, county of CLARE, and province of MUNSTER, but chiefly in that of LEITRIM, county of GALWAY, and province of CONNAUGHT, 4 miles (N. E.) from Scariff; containing 2198 inhabitants. It takes its name from the celebrated island in Lough Derg (above described), by which it is bounded on the south and east; and comprises about 9000 statute acres, of which 2500 are arable, 4500 pasture, 1900 bog and waste, and 100 woodland. Much land has been reclaimed since 1820, and there is a large portion of the mountain land under pasture. Iron exists, which makes some of the springs chalybeate, and very fine limestone and sandstone are found at Sallarnane. The principal seats are Wood Park, the residence of P. Reade, Esq.; and Kilrateera, of E. Reade, Esq. Petty sessions once a fortnight and fairs are held at Whitegates, in the vicinity. It is a vicarage, in the diocese of Killaloe, united in 1803 to the vicarages of Moynoe and Clonrush, and in the patronage of the Bishop; the rectory is impropriate in the representatives of G. Tandy, Esq. The vicarial tithes amount to £23, and of the union to £119. 8. 5½.

There is a glebe-house, with a glebe of 12 acres in the parish of Clonrush. The church, in Mount-Shannon (which see), is a neat building, and was erected by aid of a loan of £390 from the late Board of First Fruits, in 1789, and repaired by a loan from the same Board in 1831. In the R. C. divisions it forms part of the union or district of Clonrush, and has a chapel at Mount- Shannon. There is also a meeting-house for Wesleyan Methodists, and a place of worship for Baptists. About 110 children are educated in a public and 20 in a private school. Near the shore is a circular Danish fort; and silver coins of King John's reign, minted at Waterford, have been found in Wood Park bog."

"INNISKELTAIR, (or Holy Island), an island, in that part of the parish of INISHCALTRA, which is in the barony of TULLA, county of CLARE, and province of MUNSTER, 4 miles (E.) from Scariff. This island, which is also called the "Island of the Seven Churches," is in Lough Derg, between the counties of Clare and Galway. St. Camin, who died about the middle of the seventh century, founded an abbey or church here, which was afterwards called Teampul Gamin. In 834 the island was ravaged by the Danes from Limerick, and in 1027 the great Brien Boroimhe rebuilt the church. St. Cumin, the founder of the abbey, is said to have written a commentary on the Psalms, which he collated with the Hebrew text. St. Coelan wrote a life of St. Bridget iu Latin verse; and Corcran, the most celebrated ecclesiastic of Western Europe for religion and learning, was abbot, in the early part of the eleventh century. Here are the remains of seven small churches, which display considerable elegance of design. Here is also an ancient round tower in very good preservation, which is likewise called the Anchorite's Tower, from St. Cosgrath, an anchorite, having lived and died in it in the tenth century. This island is still a favourite burial-place, and is much visited by pilgrims. It contains about 25 acres of very rich land, and in its vicinity are Red Island and Bushy Island."

[Transcribed from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland 1868]
by Colin Hinson ©2018