This parish is situated on the south side of the bay of Bantry, and comprises 9793 statute acres, as applotted under the tithe act, and valued at £3716 per annum; 2562 acres are arable, 622 pasture, and 50 bog, the remainder being coarse land. The surface is very uneven, and in some parts rises into mountains of considerable elevation, but, although parts are rocky and bare, cultivation extends, and much of the waste land is reclaimable. The principal manure used is seasand, which is brought up the bay and landed at many little creeks on both sides of it. The bay is a remarkable inlet, extending from Sheeps-head to Four-milewater, a distance of 16 miles, and deep enough for the largest ships, which are occasionally driven in by adverse winds. A manor court for the recovery of debts under 40s. is held once a month; and petty sessions every fortnight. At Carrigboy there is a constabulary police station. The gentlemen's seats are Four-milewater Court, that of the Rev. Alleyn Evanson; Ardoguina, of R. T. Evanson, Esq.; O'Donovan's Cove, of T. O'Donovan, Esq.; Blair's Cove, of R. R. Blair, Esq.; Fort Lodge, of R. O'Donovan, Esq.; and the glebehouse, of the Rev. E. J. Alcock. The living is a vicarage, in the diocese of Cork, united in 1792, by act of council, with that of Kilcrohane, and in the patronage of the Bishop; the rectory is impropriate in the Earl of Donoughmore: the tithes amount to £350, of which £170 is payable to the impropriator, and the remainder to the vicar; and the entire tithes of the benefice amount to £415. There are two glebes, one in Durrus of 51a. 2r. 7p., the other in Kilcrohane of 5a. lr. 35p.
The church, near Four-mile-water, is a neat building, erected in 1792 by aid of a gift of £500 from the late Board of First Fruits; the tower was considerably raised and embattled in 1830. The R. C. union or district is co-extensive with that of the Established Church; there are three chapels, one of which is near Four-mile-water, another at Aghakisky, and the third in Kilcrohane. There is also a place of worship for Wesleyan Methodists. Here are five public schools, in which about 520 children are taught. The. only remains of antiquity are the ruins of Rossmore castle. Near Friendly Cove is a strong chalybeate spring efficacious in liver complaints.
from Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837.
The transcription of the section for this parish from the National Gazetteer (1868), provided by Colin Hinson.
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